Friday, November 13, 2009

Everybody Knows

(Very Special Thanks to the Amazing Leonard Cohen)

Silicon Valley -- Everybody knows. Wander around the halls of this valley's once great corporations and VC funded, neo-frat boy start-ups and you will find all you need to know about the causes for rising rates of American unemployment and underemployment. Whether it's Sun or Adobe, these "best and brightest" bean-counter powered executives have sold out the livelihoods of US engineers along with product/service quality for a quick cash-out to India under the ruse of a US skilled great labor shortage. And yet, US cheap labor junkies are STILL heading for the Hill to buy off another round of politicians to supply them with their fix while Obama  plans a summit on job creation next month.

LWOH readers know that  yours truly has written extensively on the wholesale sell-out of US white collar jobs and has provided the solutions with which to correct the problem of rising unemployment/underemployment by reforming CEO cheap labor lobby practices. It's not rocket science. Sometimes, my dear, a banana is just a banana...

In this excellent 2007 article by Alison Overholt at Fast Company entitled The Labor Shortage Myth, the author debunked the thesis that "When boomers start to retire, the theory goes, we'll see a job boom" by asserting "Too bad it won't happen." Overholt suggests that CEOs have manufactured the myth of a US labor shortage where none will exist, and cites this Wharton study by Peter Capelli, as yours truly has previously discussed:

"The labor-shortage alarmists underestimate the capability of younger generations. Peter Cappelli, another Wharton professor and director of the school's Center for Human Resources, notes that even though boomers outnumber busters overall, "the cohort of college grads didn't shrink. We've just pulled more kids up into the system," he says. Some 930,000 bachelor's degrees a year were conferred at the height of the boomers' run through college -- while the smallest graduating class for busters produced 1.16 million grads. Now college-educated members of the "Echo Boom," a group close in size to the boomers themselves, are starting to enter the workforce. No evidence there of a shrinking skilled labor pool."

In addition to Capelli's thorough research, he has been one of the most consistent yet dismissed scholars on the war on America's educated middle class. Overtholt references the following quote:

"But the coming labor shortage? The job boom? They're myths, kept alive mostly because they allow employers easy solutions. "A lot of companies got whacked around in the 1990s when the economy heated up and the labor market tightened. They learned it's easier to lobby for more Indian engineers on H-1B visas than to address their own retention policies and training programs," Cappelli says."

(Note that "easy" solutions = "cheap imported labor.") Fast forward to post ARRA 2009, and the promised jobs stats don't shake out, either.

Everybody knows. Millions of educated Americans are now unemployed and underemployed due to the flood of imported cheap workers that do not need to be here. We have been played by cheap labor junkies and it's time to throw them out. The H-1B temporary work visa program has kept workers in the US when they should have been sent back years ago. Now, Compete America, the cheap labor lobby (see above link)  wants MORE of them? What is the matter with the people of this country? This is nuts.

Overholt's article inspired the visionary scenario into what CEOs across the country might do to bring back the millions of professionals they kicked to the curb by sending back the millions of temporary visa holders whom our unemployment statistics prove corporate America no longer needs. She queries the "pro-worker" reality that educated boomers (and their kids) need those jobs back here:

"With retiring age being pushed off and Social Security at risk, will labor conditions turn pro-worker at any point in the future?"

How to heal this problem? Like the crack whore it is, Corporate America and their lusty political enablers are addicted to imported cheap labor like a sex rehabilitation client is to a daily quickie with the Swedish therapist. Sending millions of temporary work visa holders home so that our citizens can get back to work may not be a sexy topic,  but it can no longer be ignored or swept under the carpet as "politically incorrect." As yours truly reported here, in 2007 Bill Greider also predicted that the US would have to  ostensibly stop the great American jobs giveaway:

"At the moment, there's a great yawn about all this, but one day when everything collapses, people will ask: Why didn't we do anything about this?"

Indeed, Overholt got it right about corporate America's dependencies on "demographic crutches":

"The real solution, of course, is more difficult. It requires companies to invest in the right technologies and in their own employees in order to stay ever more productive. It's not as sexy as a demographic crutch. It just happens to be the right answer."

So let's help Obama with his jobs summit next month by demanding that the cheap labor junkies detox from their fixes of imported labor by sending them back and getting educated Americans back to work again. This H-1B/green card  visa scam has been propped up by the lie of an American skilled labor shortage myth. Now we are in a depression, and US citizens  need jobs. This is no longer a secret.

Everybody knows.


Chip Coltan said...

Don't you love how corporate Amerika keeps running that whole "America is the land of Immigrants" BS up the flagpole in order to sell this country's idiots on slave labor?

Inviting workers to come here and take jobs from experienced U.S. citizens in order to drive down wages (that is the only thing this H1B program is used for) has become obvious to everybody who isn't a knuckledragger or some delusional dope. H1Bs were supposed (hahahaha) to temporarily fill “skilled labor shortages” but instead clogged up our corporations and communities with so many ineffective, subpar grifters who don't seem to be bothered by the fact that they put local citizens out of jobs.
Here in Seattle, the laid off H1B Microserfs brought here on the temporary visa think they have every right to stick around anyway to scab themselves to other companies in front of American citizens for those openings.

Obama's summit should assign a labor task force to get every last American citizen back to work first. Afterwards, if there are any openings, bring in these so called “skilled” H1Bs.That will shake out the myth like you say of a “labor shortage” and fix the unemployment problem, real fast.

2Truthy said...

Nice city, Seattle...You really have to wonder how up there, Gates and his bean countery, surprisingly anti-intellectual tech lieutenants live with themselves, knowing they are screwing the locals, many of the older ones who helped to make the SW industry what it is. It will be interesting to see exactly what this summit will cough up. If anything other than more phlegmish excuses to KO this country's middle class.