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Monday, October 02, 2006

Grow up, biatches

So what? (Score:5, Insightful)

by DavidinAla (639952) Alter Relationship on 10:48 Monday 02 October 2006 (#16273245)

If good people in other countries can do certain things better than Americans, they ought to get the work. It's up to us to compete with them (and each other) instead of whining about the competition. Globalization is helping everyone in the long run. Competition can always be painted as nasty and brutish, but it's the way we get progress. Everyone benefits from it, even if it causes job changes in the short run.

When the Japanese auto manufacturers started sending their vehicles to the United States, nobody took them seriously at first. Then American consumers realized that the Japanese were making better cars, so they started buying them in increasing numbers. The U.S. carmakers (and their unions) simply whined about the competition instead of DOING enough about it. If they had actually competed by producing products that were better than the Japanese products (in reliability, styling and a whole range of issues), they could have fought off the competition. Instead, the unions demanded that they keep their arcane work rules that saved useless jobs in the short run, but which lost a LOT more jobs in the long run. The managements remained in denial that they were that much worse than the Japanese. Even when they DID start improving, it was too little, too late. The culture in Detroit couldn't compete with the rate of change (and improvement) given to us by Honda and Toyota. American consumers benefitted from this competition. The stockholders and employees of the U.S. companies COULD have benefitted, too, but they were both too shortsighted to learn and compete.

U.S. IT is in the position that the U.S. auto industry about 30 years ago. It leads the world, so it doesn't see the need to innovate as much as it did even 10 or 20 years ago. They're arrogant and fat and happy, it seems. Now the rest of the world is starting to catch up to us. Foreigners are learning to do the same things we've been doing, but less expensively. So what's the response? The companies and the employees whine about competition. If you can't see the continued pattern (and what to do about it), you're going to have no one to blame but yourselves.
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