Watch Out! Terminator Job In Offshoring Likely

Silicon Valley | Updated: Aug 26 2004, 05:30am hrs
Arnold Shwarzenneger may be popular in India in his avatars as the muscled Terminator and the bumbling father in Jingle All the Way. But if he signs, as California governor, a controversial Bill banning offshoring by state agencies, Bangalore will start calling him names like Conan the Barbarian and The Eraser.

He still has some time to grope for a solution. The California Senate has passed the Bill, sponsored by Assembly member Carol Liu, by 21 votes for and 14 against. Senators have suggested several amendments, so it will go back to the Assembly for a vote.

Pity the man caught in a cleft stick, as his state California is host to both Silicon Valley, home of the IT revolution, and Hollywood, which manufactures dreams bought all over the world. Both are his constituencies, in different ways.

The governors office, reporters were told, had still not taken a position on the Bill. Liu, however, has a lot to say. If this state wants to retain business and jobs in California, then we need to set an example by utilising domestic business rather than sending work overseas, she said. Jobs pump money back into the economy via income and sales tax revenue and reduce the number of people who need public assistance to survive. Offshoring may save money in the short term, but it will cost us more in the long run as more and more Californians find themselves jobless.

Liu has a soulmate in Lou Dobbs, a CNN commentator, who has become a leader of the anti-outsourcing movement. He recently came out with the book Exporting America with the theme-song: Look out, Silicon Valley! Bangalore is gaining on you!

Dobbs warned that offshoring companies were firing their own customers, because American workers would eventually find themselves unable to purchase the goods and services being exported to America by US companies.

PTI