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Thursday April 29, 2004

TORAW presentation Monday night

TORAW is holding a Public Awareness Presentation Monday, May 3 in North Haven CT.

Guest Speakers will be US Congresswoman ROsa DeLauro and CT Attorney General Richard Blumenthal.


If you are looking for companies that are not using cheap labor, check out the list TORAW has compiled.

07:50 pm
Thursday April 29, 2004
posted by gmminks

Nice Press on the IBM protest from Sheila Lennon at the Providence Journal.

05:22 am

posted by gmminks

Outsourcing bad for Indian employees

We know outsourcing is bad for American workers, but there is more and more evidence that the Indian workers who replace us are not treated very well either.

According to an this article in, Indian call center workers routinely put in 10 - 12 hour shifts. Many call center workers suffer from "BOS" (Back Office Sickness). Major complaints from the workers are:

  • No correlation between aptitude, aspiration and opportunities
  • weird work schedules
  • monotony and social isolation
  • fatigue

The workers have to work in the middle of the night in India to care for customers in the US (so much for the whole "follow the sun" business model!)

And you have to think that the high attrition rate....35 percent in non-voice and 45 percent in voice call centres....will eventually show up as a cost to the customer.

05:18 am

posted by gmminks

Remembering Kevin Flanagan

Kevin Flanagan was a programmer for the Bank of America out in California.

He survived several rounds of layoffs, watching BOA shift the jobs to cheaper labor overseas. He helped train the Indian workers (Tata employees) that would eventually perform his duties.

Last April, his pink slip finally came as well. He gathered his things, walked out to his car, and">shot himself.

If you are a Fleet customer, consider the price that American workers have paid that allowed BOA to grow and buy up banks like Fleet. Understand that your data will go to India to be manipulated.

Think about if you want to develop a relationship with a bank that treats workers the way Kevin Flanagan was treated.

Most of all, take some time to remember Kevin.
05:09 am

posted by gmminks

Wednesday April 28, 2004

People are finally getting it.

This author of -> this article <- is an immigration attorney and he says pretty much
what we have been saying all along-- The H-1B and L-1 programs have caused
thousands of US tech workers to lose their jobs.

"What Americans need to understand is how complicit the U.S. government has been in
helping large corporations secure cheap foreign labor, and the impact that has had not
just on American workers, but on the foreign laborers doing their jobs for a fraction of
their wages."

10:45 pm
Wednesday April 28, 2004
posted by rickrob

Indian Press gloats over job gains

Man, these guys are so arrogant.

According to The Economic Times, "Credit Suisse First Boston plans to shift over 100 financial analyst and research jobs, Nokia’s setting up a CDMA research and development unit, Unisys plans to invest $180-m in a software & BPO subsidiary, Logica is scouting for engineers — 400 this year and 500 next year. HSBC is set to double headcount to 1,000 at its Pune software centre""

yeah, this is producing jobs in the US.

Governor Romney, when are you going to do YOUR job and bring some employment opportunities back to the Commonwealth?
06:23 pm

posted by gmminks

Tuesday April 27, 2004

Complain to lawmakers who took a trip on NASSCOM

Washtech has an action alert about some of our Congressional Leaders who took an all-expense paid trip courtesy of NASSCOM (India's software lobbying arm)

NASSCOM sent for the senators to educate them about outsourcing

USE THIS FORM to complain to these senators.

For fun, read NASSCOM's Report on the future of the American Worker

Why do they get a say in it? Oh yeah, they are the ones paying off our leaders.

07:33 pm
Tuesday April 27, 2004
posted by gmminks


According to the CWA Blog,
"This Wednesday night, April 28, you'll see CWA's President on the hit TV series The West Wing for the second week in a row fighting the offshoring of good American jobs.

This week, you'll see the real President Morton Bahr in a CWA-sponsored commercial spotlighting the outsourcing issue and inviting viewers to go to CWA's action website for tech workers, .

This Wednesday night, April 28, you'll see CWA's President on the hit TV series The West Wing for the second week in a row fighting the offshoring of good American jobs.

This week, you'll see the real President Morton Bahr in a CWA-sponsored commercial spotlighting the outsourcing issue and inviting viewers to go to CWA's action website for tech workers, .

In last week's West Wing episode, CWA was featured prominently in the plotline as our President battled to save thousands of computer programming jobs from going overseas, and also raising our concerns over media concentration with the fictional White House staff.

It's rare for a union to get this kind of positive exposure on mainstream TV. CWA's starring role on this popular show is testimony to our union's political clout and reputation in Washington as a leading force for workers.

The commercial this Wednesday will appear in these 23 TV markets: Atlanta, Boston, Charleston, W.Va., Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dallas, Denver, Des Moines, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Portland, Ore., Raleigh, San Antonio, San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C.

With the loss of almost 3 million jobs during the Bush presidency, outsourcing is a huge issue in this year's campaign. Our candidate John Kerry has a plan and a commitment to create 10 million jobs. George Bush has a record of failure and no plan.

Tune in Wednesday night (9 p.m. Eastern time, check listings).

And let's work hard to put a pro-worker administration into the real West Wing next January."

04:38 pm

posted by gmminks

IBM Protest

There was a protest outside the IBM shareholder meeting in Providence today. To see pics in a raw sort of form, go here.

Some news coverage:

We are being called "Outsourcing Foes". Not sure what that is supposed to imply. And can I just say, IBM's CEO is a real jerk? He said, during the stockholder meeting:

""Most people recognize that you can't lock down jobs, businesses and skills, and you can't lock down nations," Palmisano said. And he warned that in managing an enterprise such as IBM, there can be "no emotional attachment to the things that don't represent your future."

That is the problem with this whole issue of outsourcing....there is no emotional attachment to people in your community. As one of the speakers at the protest put it, people used to be able to get a job, put down roots in the community to raise a family, but now people are expected to have roots that reach half-way across the world!

The Providence Journal has a nice article about the protest. (you may need to register first)

The Indian media was warning that our presence would "mar" IBM's meeting. The shareholders did vote to expense options,, but someone else should probably take a crack at explaining that.

04:11 pm

posted by gmminks

Wanna do something about offshoring?

Call your credit card company, bank, any account you have that has a toll free number. Ask the operator where they are physically located. If they say that they are unable to disclose that information, tell them you want to know how much of your private information is being manipulated beyond the protection that US law affords.

I did this last nite. It all started last Friday when I found out that if I want to talk to a live person about my student loan (which is handled by Sallie Mae...I only had federal loans), I have to talk to someone in India. Now, the lady in India was very nice and helpful. But that is not the point. The key identifier for that loan is my social security number. My bank information is tied to my loan. The people in India are not held to the same standards as people in the US are as far as respecting my privacy. And I was never informed by Sallie Mae, who is right now making a killing in interest off me (the reason for the call). As a consumer, am I not entitled to know where my information is at all times? The woman in India said she was not allowed to disclose where she was either, but I talked to her for a while and got it out of her. I hope she didn't get in trouble for telling me, a customer, the truth.

Saturday I found out the UPromise has outsourced 50% of its work to Bangladore. The workers in India handle web development and call center work. This really bothers me because for UPromise, a company that helps families save for college, the accounts have my childrens' social security number, my bank account information, my credit card, ALL of my frequent buyers cards. I was never informed that this information would be manipulated offshore. I am a customer...don't I have this right? Apparently, when the decision was made to send the work offshore it never occured to UPromise executives that their customers may not accept the idea that it's ok to send the development of webpages that capture sensitive information to a country that has no privacy laws.

So last night, I called my credit card company, just to see where the customer support was. I asked the lady where she was and she said she was not able to tell me. So I asked was she in the US, and she wasn't able to tell me. I asked if my private information is manipulated offshore and she couldn't tell me but she transferred me to a supervisor. The supervisor told me that the bank I had been doing business with had been bought by an offshore company, and that now they were privileged to be doing business in the US. That sorta left me with a bad taste in my mouth, so I said how much of my information is being sent offshore? She assured me it is all in a computer. Sigh. Sometimes I want to scream at non-geeks. I told her, look, quit reading me a press statement and talk to me. Her basic answer was that they are a global company and they can do whatever the hell they want with customer data and I am always welcome to close my account. So, I gather alot of my credit card info is going offshore as well.

I then called my bank, Citizen's Bank. They are not offshoring, nor do they plan on doing so. That should be the main thrust of their marketing campaign, it is definitly why I chose to them when I deciced I needed to leave Fleet. But they don't have a credit card. DAMN.

Does anyone know a credit card company that keeps work and information onshore?

In conclusion, call your banks and credit card companies. Ask who is looking at your private information. If enough of us do this....maybe they will see that it is something their customers are concerned about.
08:15 am

posted by gmminks

Monday April 26, 2004


The IBM protest is tommorow in Providence.

We are meeting at my house at 9:30 to get ready, and will leave shortly thereafter. If you need directions email me

Washtech members are urged to participate

Contact myself or Rick Roberts if you have any other questions.

05:22 am
Monday April 26, 2004
posted by gmminks

Sunday April 25, 2004

Max P. Michaels

Yesterday, at the outsourcing debate, the most exciting thing that happened was one member of our group became highly offended at one of the panel.
OK, all of us were offended but this particular person decided to demonstate.

Max P. Michaels distributed a document based on his business plan. a similar document can be seen here

Mr Michaels is a big proponent of Creative Destruction. Creative Destruction is that innovation creates economic growth and aides capitalism by creating competition and kiling off monopolies.

So, who is this Max P. Michaels? He is an MIT Sloan graduate. He own a venture capital firm named Cryztal Capital (go check out the looks about as big as this one!)

What does he do? His firm " focused on Management Buyouts in the outsourcing services marketplace

So, this man, who cannot respond when asked what the most highly trained citizens in the US should train for now that he has claimed all software jobs for India, is in the business of management buyouts in the outsourcing services arena.

This man, who in a moment of frustration and anger exclaimed that Americans should not think that they are entitled to a job just because they graduate from college, makes his money buying out service work to send to countries with cheap labor.

No wonder he wants people to focus on the good of outsourcing, and not the bad!

09:44 pm
Sunday April 25, 2004
posted by gmminks


Yesterday, several of us attended an event put on by the Indian American Forum for Political Education. The event was entitled "Outsourcing: Addressing the Social, Emotional, & Political Impact on Americans".

I am still trying to process what I heard. The one thing I heard that is still ringing in my ears is that the press is what is shaping this outsourcing debate. I think that is true. But for all the concern from the Indian American community about the way Indians are displayed, it doesn't seem to dawn on this same group that American tech workers are also being negatively portrayed in the media (although Sona Shah did refer to this in her opening comments).

It was amazing to hear such bitter comments from one panel member in particular who proclaimed that he does not understand why Americans think that they are entitled to a job just because they go to college.

Something needs to be done to eliminate the filters created by the media.

Some pictures of the event..

08:40 pm

posted by gmminks

Saturday April 24, 2004

Efunds and Utah welfare recepients

Efunds won the contract to provide customer service for Utah's Department of Workforce Services, specifically they "handles calls about the department's electronic Horizons welfare benefits cards." The cards provide 40,000 households in Utah electronic access to "food, cash and child-care assistance

"Atthe end of 2003, eFunds had more than 3,100 workers in its outsourcing business.95% of Efunds workers are in India" according to a report in the Pheonix Business Jounal.

For such a small workforce, eFunds uses alot of H1B visas:

  1. 2003

    5 Computer Programmer III's at a salary of $63,5000

  2. 2002

    20 Financial Analysts at a salary of $55K

    20 IT Consultants at a salary of $67K

    5 IT Consultant Level IIs at a salary of $48,963

    8 IT Consultant Level IIs at a salary of $42,765

    10 IT Consultant Level IIs at a salary of $48963

    5 IT Conultant Level IIIs at a salary of $55099

    1 Business Director at a salary of $95K

    20 Software Engineers at a salary of $79,500

    3 Computer Software Engineers at a salary of $76,500

    1 Sr. Project Mgr Projects at a salary of $99500
    2 IT Consultant Project Mgr at a salary of $57450

  3. 2001

    15 IT Consultant Level IIIs at a salary of $58,500

    15 IT Consultant Level IIIs at a salary of $60K

    15 IT Consultant Level IIIs at a salary of $72K

    30 IT Consultant at a salary of $58500

    35 IT 2 Consultants at a salary of $55K

    3 IT Consultants at a salaryof $73K

    15 IT Consultant Level IIs at a salary of $57,500

  4. 2000

    10 IT3 Consultants at a salary of $52K

    10 IT3 Consultants at a salary of $55K

    105 IT2 Consultants at a salary of $46K

    10 IT2 Consultants at a salary of $48K

    10 IT2 Consultants at a salary of $50K

    5 Application Systems Programmers at a salary of $46,500

    10 Software Engineers at a salary of $40K

    10 Software Engineer IIs at a salary of $73K

    These are just the statistics we can see, how many L-1 visa holders work for them? Do they hire Americans at all? They seem to be a pretty big government contractor.

    The contract is coming back to the US, at a cost of $63,000 a year.

    As of March, Utah's unemployment rate stood at 5.9% "Approximately 60,500 Utahns were unemployed in March 2004." Utah has seen tons of well paid high tech jobs leave the state.

    Efunds seems to playing nice to Utah legislators in offering to bring the jobs back because the company is being "beat up on a national level" over the outsourcing debate.

    06:06 pm
    Saturday April 24, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    World Bank wants unlimited movement of professionals

    The World Bank is all about outsourcing:

    "Greater access to developed countries’ markets for the temporary movement of natural service providers and commitments to maintain liberal policies towards cross-border trade through telecommunications networks would be both valuable in themselves and assist developing countries in pursuing beneficial domestic reforms, the World Bank said.

    Meanwhile, the movement of service-supplying personnel remains a crucial means of delivery even for the Indian software industry — close to half of Indian exports are still supplied through the temporary movement of programmers to the client’s site overseas, it added.

    The potential gains from successful liberalisation of trade in services are huge, it said. The US banking industry alone is estimated to have saved more than $ 8 billion over the last four years, and annual savings of the world’s top 100 financial institutions could be as high as $ 138 billion."

    If half of India's exports are from Indian techies delivering services on US soil, doesn't this make you wonder just how many of these jobs that outsourcing creates are available for US workers?
    05:31 am

    posted by gmminks

    Friday April 23, 2004

    Outsourcing Program at MIT tomorrow

    The Indian American Forum for Political Education, New England (IAFPE-NE) is sponsoring a debate on outsourcing tomorrow (Sat, April 23) at MIT.

    Some of us will be there.

    The speakers will be:

    Looks like the documentary people will be there.

    That site relays this information about this debate:

    "The format of the event will allow you to hear,
    first-hand—the opinions of first and second generation
    Indian Americans. Your analysis will inspire Indian
    Americans of all generations to begin this dialogue and
    carry it forward as the election nears. As both Indians
    and Americans, we especially feel the urgency to
    address the issues described above and believe the
    event on April 24th is the perfect place to start."
    09:55 pm
    Friday April 23, 2004
    posted by gmminks


    The IBM protest is Tuesday. We are caravaning from Milford.
    Let us know if you need more info!

    08:37 am

    posted by gmminks

    Tuesday April 20, 2004

    Although Thomas J Donohue, US chamber of commerce president, admits that "no one really knew for sure how many service jobs had been moved to India and other countries", he is sure that "many more are being created due to insourcing along with the US’s openness to the world economy,”.

    So the new word to use is insourcing. AKA foreign direct investment. Do a google news search on insourcing.

    Ok, great, lets bring jobs back to the US. But wait...which workers are being hired for these jobs? Remember, there are no limits on L-1 (transfer visas....they don't even have to pay L-1 workers American wages!).

    Did Mike Emmons make this phrase up to describe his experience at Seimens? Dang, if Trump can copyright "You're Fired", Mike surely should have rights to this phrase.

    Look, no matter what you call it, it's outsourcing. Stop acting like 8 year old kids trying to trick your mama into letting you have your way. What you are doing is immoral, and someone should make you go stand in the corner for telling half truths and being bad.
    08:16 pm
    Tuesday April 20, 2004
    posted by gmminks
    link lets you enter a zip code and see to which candidates your neighbors give money.

    Lots of Bush supporters in my town.

    thanks jn!
    08:02 pm

    posted by gmminks

    30 states are considering bills to keep work in US

    A reader sent this link in....

    Fox news is reporting that "30 states are considering bills that would ban state contracts from being sent abroad. Where bills are floundering, governors like those in Minnesota and Michigan are passing executive orders to keep contracts in-state. "

    Interesting is the list of states that "insource" (jobs supported by U.S. subsidiaries of companies headquartered abroad.)

    Rank - State - Total U.S. Subsidiary Employment
    1 California 713,500
    2 New York 480,800
    3 Texas 428,100
    4 Illinois 320,900
    5 Florida 303,300
    6 New Jersey 270,800
    7 Pennsylvania 267,100
    8 Michigan OFII 244,200
    9 Georgia OFII 243,800
    10 Ohio OFII 242,200
    11 North Carolina 237,700
    12 Massachusetts 220,800
    13 Virginia 171,300
    14 Indiana 163,000
    15 Tennessee 157,000
    16 South Carolina 136,700
    17 Connecticut 123,900
    18 Missouri 114,000
    19 Maryland 112,300
    20 Wisconsin 110,100

    Of course, I had to look at Florida's record...the big "insourcers" are : ABB Inc.; AEGON USA, Inc.; Alcon Inc.; Essilor International SA; Intrawest Sandestin Company LLC; Nestlé Waters North America; Reed Elsevier; Siemens Corporation; Sodexho Inc.; Unilever United States, Inc.; White Springs Chemical; and, Zurich North America.

    A side note, Intrawest Sandestin Company is the big resort I always talk about, they bring in tons of H2 hospitality workers from Russia. It freaks my friends out to be working with DOCTORS who now scrub toilets for the US upper class.

    I had to look at MASS too. The big insourcing companies here are Honda; Invensys Inc.; Manulife; Nestlé USA, Inc.; Novartis Corporation; Reed Elsevier; Saint-Gobain; Serono Inc.; Sodexho; and The Thomson Corporation.

    The reports make a big deal that the employees of these companies are "compensated" more than other companies' employees. But, how many US citizens are allowed to compete for these jobs? What do you mean by compensation? Does that include travel to and from the home country, housing, visa fees? If that is the case, why in the world wouldn't you use Americans?

    Is it because Americans know their rights as far as employment goes? We know that companies cannot legally work us to death?

    05:35 am

    posted by gmminks

    Customers like outsourcing

    According to an article in the Hindu Business Line says soon Indian companies will be able to stop pretending to be American, and fess up to being in India.

    "The time will come when this entire debate about outsourcing will vanish as customers in the US realise that they get better service from Indian call centres

    This quote made me laugh the most...

    "The Nasscom President, Mr Kiran Karnik, said a very small percentage of customers, if at all, would turn away if they realised that their call had been routed to India. "Any customer who wants some information or service is unlikely to hold the phone and listen to music for 15 minutes He would rather speak to somebody, wherever in the world, and get the job done," he said."

    He has obviously never had the pleasure of calling Dell for support.

    Also, I don't want my personal banking information to leave the country. I do not want to talk about my medical history with anyone who is not in New England, let alone another country.

    It's like NASSCOM wants to grab up all the business, and say you like it, you better like it cuz we're all ya got!
    05:21 am

    posted by gmminks

    Sunday April 18, 2004

    Is it really

    Free trade is defined as " an economic concept referring to the selling of products between countries without tariffs or other trade barriers."

    We hear more and more arguments from India, notable NASSCOM, saying that Americans are being hypocritical by trying to pass legislation to protect US jobs, especially since India has worked so hard to open their trade borders.

    Do these Indian businessmen have a point? Are we being hypocritical? Shouldn't we be allowing everyone a fair chance to compete for these high tech jobs?

    Yes, everyone should have a chance to compete for these jobs on an even playing field. So, are the Indian consulting companies (Wipro, Tata, etc) just better at providing IT services to the world? Or is something else at play here?

    Let's just look at Wipro for an example. This is an outsourcing/nearsourcing solutions provider who is doing very well in the market (they landed "35 customers and reported a 44 per cent rise in sales from technology services to $288 million" in the first three months of this year). "52 percent of its earnings from the US". Last year they had "$1.4 billion in revenue in fiscal year 2003-04".

    Are they proud of their client list? That is questionable, or maybe American companies are not proud of hiring Wipro. Their CEO, Vivek Paul, said because of the anti-outsourcing backlash "they might try to keep the deals under wraps for fear of being singled out by anti-outsourcing agencies."

    01:28 pm
    Sunday April 18, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    They have all the information right in front of them, and still can't see the forest for the trees.
    01:11 pm

    posted by gmminks

    Friday April 16, 2004


    We have been following the rhetoric and press releases of IT industry lobbying groups, big corporations, economists, etc over the outsourcing issue for about a year. It has been interesting seeing the argument framed lately in such a way that anyone who opposes the brand of outsourcing that these people endorse....a wholesale race to engage the cheapest labor in the branded a complainer. After all, can't you see that the economy is getting better???

    Propaganda is a great site. I will be using this site frequently as I post sites. People should read it, so we can start digging thru the crap that the "experts" are throwing at us.

    05:42 am
    Friday April 16, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    Wednesday April 14, 2004

    Republicans launch another attack on US workers

    Our elected officials have kowtowed to their corporate masters once again.

    I heard about HR 4166 or the "American Workforce Improvement and Jobs Protection Act" today, and how it plans to increase the cap on the H-1B program by adding new exemptions.

    Apparently, it allows a maximum of 20,000 exemptions for any H-1B who graduated from a U.S. University with a Masters degree or higher. The logic used for this bill is that taxpayers are wasting resources to educate these foreign students and then forcing them to go home.

    I say we are wasting resources paying people that sponsor bills like this one. This bill will not help workers in the United States that have an advanced degree that are currently employed or those looking for work.

    So tell me-- how is this a "Jobs Protection Act" , since this will help US companies get 20,000 more CLU's (Cheap Labor Units) ? Can I trademark CLU?

    The bill can be found here.

    The bill was introduced by the following Representatives:

    Lamar Smith (R-TX)
    John Carter (R-TX)
    Jeff Flake (R-AZ)
    Steve Chabot (R-OH)
    Bob Goodlatte (R-VA)
    Buck McKeon (R-CA)

    Note that a representative from Ohio sponsored this bill. Hasn't Ohio been hammered with job losses?

    Reps Chabot, Goodlatte and Smith have consistently voted to import workers by supporting the H-1B and L-1 programs.

    See for yourself at:

    Note to people of Ohio, Texas and Virginia: Vote these guys out.

    The IT industry has been devastated by the H-1B and L-1 programs, and these programs also directly assist in the displacement of US workers and the outsourcing of white-collar jobs overseas. This bill is nothing more than a gift to US companies to help in their never ending quest for cheap labor.

    I can not believe that our elected officials continue to introduce bills and support programs that harm US workers and take away their opportunities for employment.

    How much more pain does working America have to bear?
    07:49 pm
    Wednesday April 14, 2004
    posted by rickrob

    Tuesday April 13, 2004

    What we need is a 'Friends of US Workers' Caucus.

    Good news!- Now the Senate can help ship jobs overseas and displace workers too!

    WASHINGTON: A new bipartisan group called 'Friends of India' has been formed in the US Senate on the lines of the decade-old Congressional Caucus of India and Indian-Americans in the House of Representatives.

    This caucus is led by John Cornyn (R-TX) and co-chaired by Hillary Clinton (D-NY), both long-time supporters of outsourcing and H-1B. Cornyn has proposed a huge new guest-worker program -- a nonimmigrant visa called H-2A, and Hillary brought TATA to Buffalo, NY to "create jobs". (Yes, 10 jobs were actually created - which didn't go to US workers. They went to L-1 and H-1B visa holders)

    How about forming a caucus to stop the hemmoraging of jobs overseas? You could call it the 'Friends of US Workers' Caucus...
    11:04 am
    Tuesday April 13, 2004
    posted by rickrob

    Sunday April 11, 2004

    this is messed up

    By all accounts, there are less and less IT positions to go around in the US.

    Why is it then that "There are nearly 1,000 consulting firms dominated by Indians in the US, which sponsor Indian H1-B professionals. Each firm, on an average recruits 30 to 40 Indian professionals, says an industry source"???

    This is not free trade. If there is an overabundance of workers in the US, it's wrong to allow foreign companies to exploit our visa laws.
    07:01 pm
    Sunday April 11, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    Friday April 9, 2004

    Harris Miller is nuts

    In an article about states shipping state jobs overseas, he says:

    States under the gun to deliver services efficiently have naturally turned to places that provide cheaper help, said Harris Miller, president of the Information Technology Association of America.

    "Any procurement official has a responsibility to develop the best value for the taxpayers, assuming it doesn't hurt other state objectives," he said

    06:36 pm
    Friday April 9, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    Thursday April 8, 2004

    Framing the argument

    This article is gives the "buzzwords" that the outsourcing industry uses to describe outsourcing, so that customers can feel better about chasing cheap labor:

    "an IBM spokesperson recently told ComputerWire that IBM does not do "offshoring" because it is a global company and has always had operations in places such as India."

    "Cap Gemini Ernst & Young calls it "Rightshore"

    "Computer Horizons and EDS both use "Bestshore""

    BearingPoint calls it "Anyshore"

    The article also says that journalists are being barred from outsourcing conferences. If this is good for all of us, why are they so secretive?

    Read more here

    07:02 pm
    Thursday April 8, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    Indian engineering design firms can command a premium

    Weren't we told that these jobs surely would need to be done here?

    "GM, Ford, GE and Caterpillar already have virtual design centres here. India is headed in the right direction towards becoming a global engineering design hub."

    06:55 pm

    posted by gmminks

    Miller convinced DOL figures are wrong

    According to a report in The Business Gazette even though the most recent U.S. Labor Department report shows that 308,000 jobs were added across the country, the only IT sector shed 1,000 jobs in March.

    How does Harris Miller account for that, seeing as how his new report states that outsourcing has been creating jobs in the US?

    "That figure... should show an upward trend once the department revises the numbers...

    "The department's revised numbers for January and February showed more employment growth than those original reports," Miller said. "In talking with IT managers myself, they are hiring more. IT spending is also rising. ... I don't expect the dot-com bubble to come back as strong as it once was anytime soon, but we are seeing the numbers go up.""

    Yeah, and the Easter Bunny is bringing you a basket full of toys & candy too.

    06:41 pm

    posted by gmminks

    Americans do not like BPO

    According to, Outsourcing of US jobs to countries including India is very unpopular with Americans, but most agree that protecting unskilled and semi-skilled jobs is not good for economy, according a survey released on Wednesday".

    I just want to complain on the offchance anyone from the Indian press ever reads the blogs that link to them. PUT MORE INFORMATION ABOUT YOUR SOURCES IN YOUR ARTICLE All you need is a link back. Trying to figure out where you got things is a very time consuming game. Thank you.

    I could not find the survey on, although you can go to that website to register to be part of the surveys.

    I found the Yahoo News article that included the table data from the survey.

    Keeping in mind that Harris Interactive is itself involved in outsourcing, the questions seem to me to be quite skewed. For example:

    "A 68% to 16% majority of the public disagrees with the statement that "it is good for the U.S. economy when American companies use less expensive workers in countries like China and India to do work previously done at a higher cost in this country."

    but then...

    "However most people recognize that protecting unskilled or semi-skilled jobs is not the key to a successful economy. A 71% to 13% majority agree that "the long term success of the U.S. economy requires that we have a highly educated workforce who do highly skilled jobs here which cannot easily be done abroad.""

    OK, so people think that highly skilled jobs need to stay here, but does it necessarily follow that these same people think that the US should not protect unskilled or semi-skilled jobs? I don't think so....

    05:51 am

    posted by gmminks

    Wednesday April 7, 2004

    Harris Miller STILL doesn't get it

    "We've lost track of the 35- to 40-year-old white-collar person who needs to broaden his or her skill set," Miller said. "They've become the forgotten middle, and they need some help."

    So, Miller is still trying to convince everyone that the educated white-collar pros need retraining? Into which profession? After all, ITAA admits in their new study that outsourcing will not lead to new IT jobs.

    08:20 pm
    Wednesday April 7, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    DOS watching for L-1 visa fraud

    "There is no legal reason why aliens eligible for H-1B status cannot legitimately seek out other types of visas, including L. On the other hand, the inability of aliens to obtain H-1B visas can lead to increased fraud and abuse of the L and other categories, and posts need to be sensitive to this possibility."
    08:10 pm

    posted by gmminks

    US Congressman David Dreier supports outsourcing

    I believe outsourcing is important and positive part of overall trade
    08:03 pm

    posted by gmminks

    Tuesday April 6, 2004

    Bank of America cutting 12,500 workers at Fleet

    geez louise

    according to

    The total number of positions across the company that will be eliminated is about 12,500. We expect at least 3,500 of those positions to be accounted for through attrition or the elimination of open positions. Most of the reductions will come where we have overlapping processes or in corporate staff functions. The reductions will begin this month and continue throughout 2004 and 2005.

    switch to Citizen's Bank or ANYONE but Fleet/BOA.

    Remember Kevin Flannagan!
    07:39 pm
    Tuesday April 6, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    Sunday April 4, 2004

    Who is checking your tax return?

    Or maybe I should say, where is your tax return getting checked?

    There is a good chance it's being done in India

    Notes from the Economic Times [India]:

    • "Large accounting firms like Ernst & Young and KPMG also have captive units in India, and they may be outsourcing some data entry work to their Indian centres, though this could not be confirmed."
    • "The outsourcing of processing of tax forms to India is expected to rise four-fold this year compared to last year."
    • "The work done by Indian firms relates largely to data entry on tax forms, calculating the tax payable for individuals in US"
    • "Datamatics is now running three shifts daily processing tax forms"

    It is estimated that 100,000 to 150,000 tax returns will be processed in India. According to a report in the Palm Beach Coast Times, Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Mark Everson says "there is no requirement that it [sending tax returns offshore to be processed] be disclosed to taxpayers."

    The same article reveals the rational for sending the tax return offshore....a US tax preparer would bring in $3,000 a month, their counterpart in India would make $300. Do you think the consumer will ever see those cost saving passed on to him? Isn't this strange that companies lower costs at the expense of our privacy, and don't pass on the savings to us?

    If you are in Mass, "Xpitax Inc., based in Braintree, Mass., uses 80 workers in India to prepare tax returns".

    Ernst & Young have employees doing business tax returns in Bangladore.

    06:00 pm
    Sunday April 4, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    foreign call centers answer food stamp queries

    There is something fundamentally wrong about hiring call center workers for Food Stamp programs in the US. The foreign workers earn about $1 US an hour to assist the disenfranchised US citizens who depend on the food stamp program to eat.

    There have to be jobs and opportunitites for US citizens at home. The goal should be to get everyone working so that we do not have to fund food stamp programs. If we keep sending basic service jobs offshore because we can, we are going to end up having to pump more money into the welfare pools.

    Do not believe Harris Miller when he says that sending these jobs that provide customer support to food stamp programs are saving the taxpayer money. Do not believe him when he makes comments such as these:

    "Far from being an economic tsunami that washes away domestic IT employment as some believe, global sourcing helps companies become more productive and competitive.."
    "The savings produced through worldwide sourcing are invested in new products and services, in new market expansion and, most importantly, in creating new jobs and increasing real wages for American workers."

    10:00 am

    posted by gmminks

    Saturday April 3, 2004

    Scripts lab in FL

    I talked with friends about this in FL. I told them to watch ole Jeb, and watch how many Americans were able to get jobs.

    Well, I was right. The scientists are not coming over on H-1B visas, they are using J1 visas. Silly quote about how the J1 works better than the H-1B visa category from Scripps spokesman Keith McKeown:

    ""The distinction is the 'H' visa is for people coming here to work forever and ever. A 'J' visa is renewable," McKeown said. "He can switch to another kind of visa later and has other options."

    A visitor may remain in the states for three years under a "J" visa before it must be renewed, according to guidelines from Scripps for foreign researchers.

    Weissmann, who is in London conducting research on mad cow disease, could not be reached for comment. But he e-mailed confirmation to Scripps officials Tuesday that he and his wife had been cleared to come to Florida."

    Now, what is messed up is the H-1B was designed to allow global talent to comet to the US. I would think that a top molecular biologist would be someone with unique talent. As opposed to the sys admins and entry-level coders who grabbed up the 65K H-1b visas this year.

    It seems like lots of people who can't get their H-1B visas renewed are turning to the J-1 visas. For a great article about how the immigration law industry is planning for the future, check out this article

    But I would watch Scripps in FL. There was quite a bit of controversy opening that lab. It was promised to the locals this business would bring jobs. Let's watch who gets these jobs!
    10:43 pm
    Saturday April 3, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    If high tech spending is up, where are the jobs?

    "In the last year there've been big increases, double digit increases, in technology spending and there's been a continued decline in tech employment. Which suggests a substantial effect from offshoring." This according to Lee Price, research director at the Economic Policy Institute.

    Of course, ITAA disagrees. Their new report says the total opposite. No, really, it's true!
    10:11 pm

    posted by gmminks

    ITAA after Kerry

    “Senator Kerry has begun running a campaign ad that paints offshore outsourcing as a zero sum game,” said ITAA President Harris Miller. “As a study released by ITAA and Global Insight … clearly demonstrates, offshore outsourcing pushes the U.S. economy to perform at a higher level, creating more jobs and better real wages for Americans over the long run. We agree with Senator Kerry about the need to create more jobs in this country, but we are concerned that his approach may be more about building economic barriers and less about building the bridges needed to accomplish this goal.”

    Just because you say the study's name over and over again does not mean that the conclusions drawn by the study are correct, or even relevant.

    The curtain has been pulled back, and we can see the wizard for who he is, a sad, strange, little man.

    09:55 pm

    posted by gmminks

    "We have identified 127 critical data points"

    Do you really want a bank, credit card company, loan company, tax preparation service, food stamp worker to send your personal information to India?

    "We have identified 127 critical data points across the organisation. We are so conscious as any kind of leak can happen from any where."

    There are 127 different places where your personal information could be in jeopardy? YIKES!

    There are no laws in India that protect privacy of customer data. The state of California has set up a commission to study the implications of this.

    07:53 am

    posted by gmminks

    watch out if you are an IT worker in India

    We tried to warn you this was coming....

    A report by Mike Yamaoto saysthe growing US demand for offshore services from India is raising the cost of labour in the latter country, causing American firms "to begin eyeing China, Romania and other options."

    Workers from all countries need to come together and stop this crap. Big multi-national corporations are killing innovation in their quest for the lowest priced techies. Techies are the backbone of this modern information age. Right now we are overworked (or not allowed to work at all), and kept in a constant state of distress over the security of our jobs. We are set against each other by a false sense of competitive advantage. IT workers from all countries should revolt...make these companies stop treating us as slaves, and get back to the business of making information happen.

    07:42 am

    posted by gmminks

    T-Mobile in the UK may be moving support to India

    according to leaked documents of course, shhh its all secret you know

    "A spokeswoman for T-Mobile insisted that Zenta's proposal to move work to India had been rejected but she acknowledged that negotiations to sublet part of its site to Zenta were continuing.

    A decision to move any work to India would be controversial because T-Mobile currently occupies a publicly funded enterprise zone in Dearne Valley that is aimed at regenerating the former Manvers pit site, near Rotherham"

    07:29 am

    posted by gmminks

    Outsourcing under cover

    Speaking at a Nasscom event in Delhi, India, Norman J Ornstein spoke of how secretive American corporations are when it comes to outsourcing.

    According to

    "Squeezed between the economic sense of outsourcing, the business need to wriggle out of backlash and being seen as supporting people’s cause in the country, American MNCs are not only holding back their plans, they are keeping their existing outsourcing activities under cover.

    According to Resident Scholar of American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, Norman J Ornstein, many large companies are taking tactical decisions to hold back their outsourcing plans, particularly to destinations in the Asian region. "No big company wants to have a headline that throws light on big number of jobs being outsourced to other destinations," he said categorically.

    Here is my question, if outsourcing is good for all parties involved, why hide it? If you truly believe something is right, why not get on with what you are going to do and let the results prove what you are saying is correct.

    It is also interesting to me that now, instead of holding the Japanese auto industry up as the example for why this is going to happen, IT firms in India are being warned not to be too open and proud of what they are doing, lest the American people treat the Indian IT industry like we did Japanese auto industry.

    That is a messed up strategy...."shhh they can't see where this product is coming from, if y'all just hush we will send ya all the business".

    How low.

    07:25 am

    posted by gmminks

    Friday April 2, 2004

    Average age of WIPRO worker is 22

    "Walk into the Wipro Spectramind office in Delhi and the first thing that hits you in the corridor is a sense of déjà vu. Teenagers loitering in the corridor, colourful notice boards, echoes of laughter and chatter…. The fact that the average age of employees in the 10,000+ strong call centre is 22 years is probably why you are immediately reminded of student days."

    05:59 am
    Friday April 2, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    Stop blaming outsourcing!

    Harris Miller says we are blaming the wrong thing

    " American companies and consumers have benefited from the cost savings of outsourcing, resulting in new IT jobs, says Harris Miller, president of ITAA.

    Politics and the media have caused some people to scapegoat offshoring for the slow jobs growth, says Miller.

    "It's easier to blame foreigners, rather than looking at more abstract things like economic cycles, or the bursting of the dot-com bubble," he said. "Contrary to a lot of press and political hype, global competition and sourcing creates more jobs and better paying jobs for American workers, and it creates more IT jobs in the U.S."

    Obviously, we all need to hone our abstract thinking skills. Is this the equivalent of "If you build it....they will come"?? Harris, this is not a movie script.

    And please tell us, who are being hired into all these IT jobs being created in the US? It will be very interesting to see if the ITAA lobbies for more H1B visas this year. It's gonna take alot of I mean abstract thinking to understand why we still need more temporary foreign workers to come to the US for high tech jobs.

    Harris, the displaced techies want to be part of this global economy too!

    05:55 am

    posted by gmminks

    EU moves to protect privacy

    What is weird is they are doing this because Capital One pulled its call center from India (and Wipro) after agents got US customers to sign up for cards by offering bogus credit levels.

    Doesn't that make you wonder...why haven't we seen this in the news at all?
    05:50 am

    posted by gmminks

    Thursday April 1, 2004


    Are you out of work? Do you need a job? Are you in Massachusetts?

    The business owners on the Cape are going nuts. It is almost time for the summer season to start, and they do not have enough workers.

    Now, these are manual labor jobs. Washing dishes, feeding tourists, scrubbing boats. But they pay pretty well.

    I ask you, if the unemployment rate is still high in our state,, why are employers still needing to bring in foreign labor for jobs that do not require special skills?

    According to an article in the March 18, 2004 edition of Cape Cod Times Paul Avellar, owner of The Chatham Boat Company says "he prefers foreign labor anyway....Americans (complain) too much and they just want days off and they're not dependable. That's why the jobs are going overseas."

    So what do these employers want? They want the government to increase the tax on the H-2B visa. Here is a brief overview of that visa category:

    H2B visas are for temporary, seasonal workers.

    According to, to get the visa, the employer must prove that the work is:

    • "Recurring seasonal need

    • Intermittent need

    • Peak-load need

    • One time occurrence

    Second, the employer must establish that there are no unemployed U.S. workers willing or able to do the work. This is established through the states’ employment agency using a labor certification process. However, this process should not be confused with the labor certification process for permanent residency. The recruitment period here is only ten days and the recruitment efforts required are much less extensive."

    So the question is, are there unemployed US workers who are willing OR able to do this work? Are these employers expecting us to believe that there are no available workers in an area where the average annual income for service workers is $18,607 Why can't we find any job listings if these businesses are in such dire straits? There are not even listings on local college job boards.

    Joe Guzzardi points out the horrid work situation for teenagers. He says "the job market for 16-to-19 year- olds is as low as it has been since the government started tracking statistics in 1948". Can't these kids wash dishes? Clean boats?

    The employers on the Cape should stop whining and direct that energy into looking for people to fill these manual labor positions. There are so many people who do not have money to pay their bills. Make these employers abide by the spirit and indeed the letter of the H2B legislation.....fill these positions with unemployed Americans.

    07:44 pm
    Thursday April 1, 2004
    posted by gmminks

    India's software service export surplus

    Are these imports taxed?

    Shouldn't they be?

    "Data released by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Thursday showed the country's balance of payments (BOP) surplus widened in the October-December quarter to $7.2 billion from a surplus of $6.1 billion in the same period a year earlier, as foreign capital inflows into Asia's third-largest economy gathered pace."
    05:24 am

    posted by gmminks

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