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Are Silicon Valley's Glory Days Over? 335

Posted by timothy
from the this-too-shall-pass dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "Pete Carey writes in the Mercury News that there are 'clear warning signs' that Silicon Valley has entered 'a new phase of uncertainty' in which its standing as a tech center is at risk and that decisive action by business, government and education is needed if the region is to retain its standing as the world's center of technical innovation. 'It could be that Silicon Valley has a different future coming,' says Russell Hancock. 'It's not a given that we will continue to be the epicenter of innovation.' Among the troubling indicators in the Silicon Valley Index (PDF): 90,000 jobs lost in the last two years; the influx of foreign science and engineering talent has slowed; venture capital funding has declined; per capita income is down 5 percent from 2007; and the number of people working as contractors rather than full-time employees is rising. Adding to the valley's problems is a malfunctioning state government that is shortchanging investment in education and infrastructure."
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Are Silicon Valley's Glory Days Over?

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  • by Baldrson (78598) * on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:12PM (#31123848) Homepage Journal
    "90,000 jobs lost in the last two years; the influx of foreign science and engineering talent has slowed"

    I keep telling these idiots that the first option you should look at when jobs are declining is to increase the importation of foreign workers but do they listen?

    nnnnNOOOOOoooooooo....

  • by countertrolling (1585477) on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:16PM (#31123864) Journal

    Need that money for more prisons.

  • by unity100 (970058) on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:18PM (#31123874) Homepage Journal

    recent years have made working freely by contracting much more easier and feasible. in addition the respect for that kind of contracting and telecommuting increased as well. bright and capable people are now more and more working freely in contract fashion rather than being tied to some company by a salary. this can only increase.

  • by Attila Dimedici (1036002) on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:19PM (#31123886)

    Need that money for more prisons.

    We're talking about California, what money?

  • by Yergle143 (848772) on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:20PM (#31123904)

    The synergy of government, university, corporation in Silicon valley
    is glued there by one critical component -- the venture capital lives
    down the block and they like to see how their money is spent --
    daily. Perhaps others have more direct life experience but I've
    definitely seen it in biotech.

    As soon as the lure of big bucks goes away, tech will be a commodity
    to be found in any medium sized city's office park. The cost of life in
    CA is insane.

  • by DigiShaman (671371) on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:23PM (#31123916) Homepage

    We are all in a global recession. As such, there are no "Glory Days" for anyone anywhere. I wouldn't count Silicon Valley out just yet.

    My advice? Keep your current job if you can, and suck wind like the rest of us do.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:30PM (#31123950)

    #1. criticism on the poster or whoever came up with the Slashdot article title "Are Silicon Valley's Glory Days Over?" -- yes, catchy and attention getting, but jumps to conclusions.

    #2. what is this article about? It's from the business side of things. They spoke with:

    - chief executive officer of Joint Venture: Silicon Valley Network
    - chief executive and president of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation
    - chief strategist in San Jose's Office of Economic Development
    - Santa Clara County's budget director ...where's the techies? "decisive action by business, government and education is needed" -- what about technological innovation? That is the other side of the equation too other than those funding these operations.

  • by 0123456 (636235) on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:33PM (#31123978)

    Does this imply that continually electing right wing governors and the like has a little bitty teenie weenie something to do with economies falling into the toilet? Could it be?

    I believe you'll find it's bloated government spending that's bankrupt California. And I'd hardly call Arnie 'right wing', except perhaps by Hollywood's standards.

  • by cptnapalm (120276) on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:34PM (#31123988)

    It is hard to know how to respond to something so utterly ignorant. Where does one start? California has not gone to a Republican presidential candidate since 1988. That is 22 years since basic comprehension of reality is apparently beyond your grasp. The state's legislature is loopy leftist. The governor is a RINO.

    As the testbed of liberal ideas, California is going the same way as its 1970's predecessor, New York City, did: into bankruptcy.

  • by PCM2 (4486) on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:46PM (#31124066) Homepage

    We're talking about California, what money?

    Bad joke. If California were a separate nation, it would be the eighth largest economy in the world, right after Italy and before Spain, Canada, Brazil, Russia, India, and on and on. Australia is an entire continent, and its economy is less than half the size of California's. What Californians are pissed about is that we also have some of the highest taxes in the nation, and we have no idea where that money is all going.

  • by joe_n_bloe (244407) on Friday February 12, 2010 @11:48PM (#31124078) Homepage

    The obvious next step: Ban people who don't have H-1 visas from tech jobs. There's lots of jobs at Starbucks left for lazy overeducated white guys.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 13, 2010 @12:02AM (#31124146)
    Cite/evidence or it didn't happen. Crying "corruption" is a lazy person's way of avoiding thinking about the problems.
  • by Mr Thinly Sliced (73041) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @12:48AM (#31124404) Homepage Journal

    And what people seem to not understand is that Americans bring unique skills to technology.

    Whilst I'm sure America has great education and a skilled native workforce - this kind of superiority complex isn't really doing you any favours.

    I do agree with you that Governments are vaguely accountable for distoring the workforce markets at the behest of large corporations - unfortunately there isn't an easy fix for that as the deck is rather stacked against the private individual in most western economies.

  • by PCM2 (4486) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @12:55AM (#31124446) Homepage

    Part of the problem in Silicon Valley is that the venture capital community has become noticeably more risk averse than it was many years ago.

    Looking at some of the Web startups that got funded in the 90s, I wouldn't describe the VC community of that era as "less risk averse" so much as "plain stupid." No sane person should have believed some of those businesses would go anywhere, yet VCs were playing a shell game, hoping some bigger company would come along to buy up their stake before the whole thing fell apart.

    The role of venture capital should be to capitalize ventures, with the aim of creating wealth through innovation. Instead, VCs of that era were going for short-term profit, and many of them didn't seem to care what happened to their portfolio at all. As soon as they started getting impatient, they'd fire senior management and start dismantling the company in the most expedient way possible.

  • by turkeyfish (950384) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @12:56AM (#31124454)

    Finally, the GOP has wised up and has set out to systematically destroy Silicon Valley and all those liberal-minded programmers and their support for leftist educators that have nothing better to do than fill the minds of children with all sorts of thoughts.

    If jobs aren't outsourced to India, how can American corporations make enough money to pay executive salaries? If Silicon Valley can be broken, computer talent can be had at pennies on the dollar, so that once again we will be able to compete with India and China.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:00AM (#31124468)

    1: Silicon valley has nothing that Dubai, Beijing or Bangalore has. The US allowed people to get college educations on the taxpayer's dime with a higher priority than native citizens for tier 1 universities. Giving tax breaks for offshoring allowed India, China, and other nations to have the same tech, but without the cost of R&D.

    2: American companies lack of security, with the attitude of "security has no ROI" has resulted in no new stuff to be stolen by hackers and foreign intel departments.

    3: The US government has given the middle finger to R&D, while allowing banks to slurp at a trough. China, Russia, and even Iran actually realize where their future is, and are putting their rupees/yuan/rubles/other currency into this. No R&D funding means no cool stuff.

    4: Education. American high schools schools can teach someone how to strip a Cadillac in 30 seconds or that a 45 caliber is a better weapon than a 9mm for gangbanging, but basic knowledge for technology (calculus, differential equations) that is paid for by the government in other nations, costs 5-6 digits in student loans here.

    5: Education again. American students are told that science is for nerds and dweebs, and won't get you chicks. Instead, go law and the J. D. gets you a meal ticket for life. Or go get a MBA and be a ruler of a corporation. Scientists are viewed as grunts or slaves, a completely fungible resource. Same with IT workers.

    In short, the US is fucked, and Congress has absolutely zero interest in dealing with it.

  • by rjiy (1739274) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:06AM (#31124498)
    The H1B situation is mostly orthogonal to the silicon valley startup situation. Almost no startup will take the time or the effort to put people through the immigration process. So H1B's mostly only work for well established and safe companies at-least till they get a Green card (which nowadays takes more than a decade for Indians). They are competition only for Americans also wanting to work in well established and safe companies.
  • by blahplusplus (757119) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:08AM (#31124504)

    "What Californians are pissed about is that we also have some of the highest taxes in the nation, and we have no idea where that money is all going."

    That's because Californians and Californian companies are some of the greediest mofo's on the planet.

  • by ucblockhead (63650) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:26AM (#31124602) Homepage Journal

    It's a combination. It's a Democratic majority that refuse to cut any spending combined with a Republican minority that, given the California 2/3rds requirement, vetoes any tax increase. It's a deadly combo that guarantees the state will never be run in a fiscally responsible way. (i.e. insisting that inflows == outflows.)

    If either party were able to fully define both tax and spending levels, the state would be better off.

  • by PCM2 (4486) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:27AM (#31124606) Homepage

    That's because Californians and Californian companies are some of the greediest mofo's on the planet.

    I think you misunderstand me. I'm not saying we're mad because we have to pay taxes. We're mad because we seem to be paying taxes into a black hole.

    California has a higher gross state product than any other state. It also has the highest income taxes and state taxes. Simple math will tell you that means California's income is higher than any other state's. And yet we are cutting social services, slashing development budgets, and letting roads fall into disrepair. Our schools used to rank among the best in the nation; now they're at the bottom of the list. Meanwhile we're funding a prison industrial complex fueled by misguided laws and private interests. The problem goes far deeper than "liberal policies" or "Republican greed"... the whole state government is broken.

    I'm not the only one who thinks this, either. There is a concerted effort underway right now to call a constitutional convention to reform the state constitution. Californians will probably get to vote for it in November, and if they can, they will.

  • by hibiki_r (649814) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:35AM (#31124654)

    Come on, put some thinking into this: If you tax consumption, you get a different flavor of inequality: Saving money to spend it overseas is suddenly a tax break. A single man ends up paying less taxes if he doesn't marry or have children, because he has less expenses. Saving money becomes a tax break, which makes consumption drop like a rock, making the country dependent on exports.

    Blanket consumption taxes are probably the worst idea out there. Thankfully, they'll never pass, because if something like that ever comes close to legislation, it'll be really easy to show most people that, under that scenario, the large majority of the population would end up paying more, while those that end up paying less are the top half percent of earners, and immigrants who send their money home.

    Even a flat tax on income would be less regressive.

  • by Quiet_Desperation (858215) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:35AM (#31124658)

    Our per prisoner cost is astronomical due to the prison employee unions who seem to have stolen CIA mind control tech or something. Or they just buy outTheir pensions are ridiculous and the envy of the private sector suckers who pay for it all.

    And stop with the Prop 13 blame. It's BS. Jebus, even many progressive politicians here don't trot that one out anymore. Go back and look at what led up to Prop 13. It didn't form out of a vacuum. People were having to get *loans* to pay their property taxes. It is INSANE to tax people on unrealized gains!

    California pulls in PLENTY of revenue, and income tax revenues have risen 800% in the past three decades.

    http://www.sacbee.com/walters/story/2002341.html [sacbee.com]

  • FRAMING (Score:5, Insightful)

    by linhares (1241614) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:36AM (#31124662)
    Framing, dude. Framing.

    Policies that you can't argue against without putting yourself in an inferior position:

    Patriot Act-->Who wants to be labeled as unpatriot in a time of grave danger?

    Accounting by Fair Values-->Who wants to support "unfair" values?

    Tax Relief-->Who the hell can be against relief?

    etc; ad nauseam... The problem is that examples such as these are all complex laws with hordes of pages and technicalities, yet they sound FAIR, COMMONSENSICAL, HONEST, and with CA's direct democracy [wikipedia.org], Joe Average will be sucked into this type of framing trick.

    I for one have always thought that ThePirateBay.org should change its name to "OurSharedCulture.org", or "AllHumanCulture.org". I REALLY Want to see a politician screaming on TV "We gotta shut down those bloody criminals from "OurSharedCulture.org"!!

  • by hibiki_r (649814) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:45AM (#31124700)

    But the American EE competes directly with the Asian: And he makes a whole lot more. The reason outsourcing started is that the wage differentials were so massive that moving entire divisions overseas made sense: Just see how much R&D many big companies have moved to China, India, Russia and even Brazil.

    If you want engineers to have the top status, you can't just wish for doctor or executive salaries: In the US, those professions are extremely overpaid when compared to the rest of the world. It's their status that needs to go down to a reasonable level, precisely by seeing enough youngsters moving into those fields to bring the market back down. Late 90s salaries are not coming back, because they were an aberration. The salaries one can get today as an engineer in the midwest are still way higher than what people of similar positions make in Europe.

    Instead of protectionism, look for ways to make your country more competitive. It's the only thing that works in the long run.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:58AM (#31124764)

    I call bulls**t on this. Its like saying white Americans believe they are inherently superior to African-Americans. Most Indians working in the US are from urban India where caste matters very little. I've worked in India and nobody has ever dared ask anyone their caste at my workplace. While caste discrimination is still a legitimate concern, the impression that Americans have about it is extremely inaccurate. India had put in place measures similar to affirmative action [wikipedia.org] even before the US did. Hate Indians and H1-Bs as much as you want, but please don't rationalize your hatred by spreading lies and inaccuracies about them. On a side note, IMHO, the people who whine most about H1-B, Indians,Chinese etc are those who aren't good enough to get those jobs anyway. I work with many Americans who are awesome engineers and they don't give a crap about all this. The Americans I interacted with at school were smart as hell and had no problems getting 2-3 job offers even in a recession.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 13, 2010 @02:08AM (#31124806)

    this can only increase.

    Until those bright and capable people get a cough and discover that their insurance is now $1000/mo and if they leave it they'll never get insurance again.

    Then again, our company's group policy just increased another $100/mo (company pays half) to for a middle-aged male, excluding family. And to get that ONLY $100 increase, we had to raise our deductible and ER care now has a 50% coinsurance. 50%! Why am I paying for insurance if my first accident will drive me to bankrupty, when I could be spending that $225 on movies or something fun and just declaring bankrupty when I have an accident?!?

    Oh wait, it's because I have MS and need about $2000 worth of drugs a month to keep me a productive member of society. Thank God I was employed and insured when I was diagnosed with it, even though I'll probably never be able to switch jobs again and the insurance company will probably just keep raising the rates until the company fires me to get affordable insurance again.

    I'm sure contracting is great for young, healthy people. Just remember: you don't stay young and healthy for long. Enjoy it while you can.

  • by phantomfive (622387) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @02:20AM (#31124876) Journal

    What's really happened in Silicon Valley is that it's been hollowed out. Silicon Valley used to be a major manufacturing center.

    Whenever I hear people complain about America's dwindling manufacturing base, I always wonder, do these people WANT to work in a factory? I mean, it's great to have steel mills in your country, but they aren't very pleasant places to work. I am fine with the idea of building our manufacturing back up if that's what we want to do, but I'm sure not going to help build it up by working there.

    A major part of why the manufacturing base is leaving is because there aren't enough unskilled laborers here. Tons of people come from Mexico, China, and every other developing country; why not send the manufacturing to them instead if they want it so much? Then they don't have to leave their families and homes and make dangerous journeys to America (contrary to what some believe, not all foreigners in underdeveloped countries are desperate to come to America, and not all of them want to stay once they get here). It's win-win.

  • by haruharaharu (443975) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @02:36AM (#31124952) Homepage

    The governor is a RINO.

    From watching the antics of the Republican party, RINOs are actually the only ones that try to be republican. The rest are loony religious people trying to push their brand of god on everyone.

  • by linhares (1241614) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @02:45AM (#31125006)
    You are right on target; I had some serious money to invest in a startup in CA, but the sheer humiliation involved with the immigration process [tinypic.com] just made me sick. Couple that with a sad growing xenophobic hatred for immigrants, from people with no understanding of economic change, and a firm belief that anyone not born in sacred american soil must not be as smart as them, as deserving as them. It's like Google and Yahoo, founded by *those horrible people==immigrants* do not employ Americans. I don't think for a second that SV is sinking; it will float because of its sheer brainpower, money, and network-effects magnetism. But the USA is--you can't live on borrowed money and think that no troubles will happen, ever. China has, with its 2+ Trillion of greenbacks, bought the USA, and it's just waiting for the receipt. F**k everything; my money is now on gold while I wait for the dollar collapse.
  • by linhares (1241614) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @02:56AM (#31125034)
    Dude, take your pick. Either you'll have more HB1s inside America, or you'll have competition from abroad. This is a binary decision. But of course, all of those 5.700.000.000 people from outside America aren't as smart or deserving as real Americans...

    Now I am fully aware that this is a fine and dandy way to waste some good earned karma, but sorry, it's much closer to the truth.

  • by Daniel Dvorkin (106857) * on Saturday February 13, 2010 @03:25AM (#31125140) Homepage Journal

    My taxes went up, not down, when I moved from Massachusetts to California. Thanks for playing, though.

    The plural of "anecdote" is not "data".

  • by Lock Limit Down (1744502) <cplusoop@yahoo.com> on Saturday February 13, 2010 @03:43AM (#31125204)

    This is mostly true. "Protecting" American jobs is an entitlement mindset: "I was born an American so I deserve a job". Is that wrong? I don't know, but it essentially means you are whining that you can't compete with your foreign counterpart. Oh sure, they compete by working for less, but why are Americans competing for 20th and 19th century jobs? We have lost our technological lead so we are now fighting over the scraps left over from the inertia of the last 50 years of American dominance.

    Running companies has become so onerous here in the U.S., with just a lawsuit or two over "sexual harrassment" enough to bankrupt any small, innovative company (why is the company responsible for that anyway?) that it's better to ship your production overseas. For some reason the "Don't worry, be happy" generation thinks we have the luxury to save the rest of the world.

    Health Insurance, Government taxes and requirements, City, County codes make many people just say to hell with it. Millions of small business owners are tired of paying taxes so thousands of Federal bureaucrats can "earn" $170,000 a year (and pile up benefits the private sector can only dream about) and make sure Goldman Sachs employees (the "doing God's work" CEO is only worth $250 million, poor guy) can divvy up $16 billion in ill-gotten gains. And you wonder why companies are willing to put up with the hassle of outsourcing.

    When you ship your production to China or India guess what? You are also losing your Intellectual Property because those guys will learn it, mutate it into their own technology and come right back with product produced more cheaply without your patent.

  • by linhares (1241614) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @03:45AM (#31125208)
    You shouldn't be interested in their welfare. But stop daydreaming that they won't compete. If one in every TEN MILLION is capable of doing the next Skype or Infosys or Embraer, you'll have 570 foreign companies to worry about. Hone your skills and get ready for an even worse tidal wave of competition.
  • by timmarhy (659436) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @05:46AM (#31125544)
    how about you put some thinking into it!? given what we know about people, do you really believe people are just suddenly going to stop wanting things? sure stuff will go up in price, but they will have more in their pay check without income or captial gains taxes.

    and single man shouldn't pay as much tax either, he isn't the one using all the government services. he'll sink his money into goods and services rather then throwing it down a government black hole funding daft things like the iraq war.

    as for buying a car in canada to avoid tax... think real hard - there is already sales taxes on things now.

  • well (Score:5, Insightful)

    by unity100 (970058) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @06:32AM (#31125712) Homepage Journal

    then your problem is the draconian, almost near feudal insurance system in usa.

  • by Targon (17348) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @07:49AM (#31125994)

    There is a big misconception going on here that needs to be cleared up. The vast majority of Americans support LEGAL immigration, but the key is that most also do not want to see ghettos forming, or to have large FACTIONS in companies that are made up of immigrants. Basically, when you have large groups of non-English speaking people congregating together, rather than integrating into American society, that is when you have problems. Those who come to OUR country should learn the language of the land, and in the work force, American workers should NOT feel like they have to learn a foreign language just to work with other employees of the same company.

    Now, I feel the same applies for other countries, where if I went to another country that did not speak English, people who plan to work there should be able to communicate in the language of the country they plan to move to, BEFORE they move there.

    This is not an anti-immigrant attitude, but it is about making it where Americans are not kept out of the work force because immigrants DOMINATE a corporate environment. When you have too many Spanish speaking people in a company, you will drive out English speaking people. When you have a technical company with a majority of people from India, you will see Americans not feeling terribly comfortable. Basically, no one wants to feel like a minority, but when you intentionally move to another country, you accept that you will be in a minority, and in your own country, no one should feel like they belong to a minority. If there is a healthy mix of people, that is different than having one group dominate, and that is the root of the misconception.

    Take a group of 10 people, and if 2 are from India, 2 are African American, 3 are Latino, and 3 are Caucasian, that will work well. You make it so you have 6 from India, or 6 are Latino, and the cultural balance will be off. Note that a key is also what culture a person feels they belong to. Many people from a Latino background are Americans, and while they have a love for the culture their parents or grandparents come from, they speak English as their first language and they have their loyalty to the USA, not some other country.

    The problem is that too many people who have moved to the USA in recent years still feel that their OLD country is their home, because they have never accepted that the USA is their home. This is the problem, when immigrants not only take their experiences with them, but also keep their loyalty to their old country, and refuse to assimilate, it causes friction.

  • by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @09:23AM (#31126382)

    Either you'll have more HB1s inside America, or you'll have competition from abroad. This is a binary decision.

    Err, no.

    A 3rd way would be to scrap the H1B visa program and replace it with a visa that is officially an immigration visa, not a temporary worker visa. The way it is now, H1B visa holders are at the mercy of their employers if they want to immigrate because switching employers means restarting the green card process and the green card process generally works out to about the same duration as an H1B visa + renewal. So, switch employers more than once or after a couple of years and you are essentially guaranteeing that you won't get a green card. A fix to the system like that puts visa holders on an even competitive field with citizens which will serve to increase the bargaining position of all employees.

    Long-term, that's better for the country anyway. We need to encourage the brain-drain into the US to continue as it is now, we've become less hospitable to foreigners and at the same time their home countries have become a lot more hospitable to highly educated workers. Changing H1B into an official immigration-path visa would go a long way towards tilting the scales back in our favor.

  • by Teckla (630646) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @09:40AM (#31126474)

    Dude, take your pick. Either you'll have more HB1s inside America, or you'll have competition from abroad. This is a binary decision.

    Wow, this is so completely wrong that I'd think even Slashdot mods would see through the fallacy.

    It's not a binary decision. The U.S. will see fierce competition from abroad whether or not we import hordes of H1-B workers during an economic crisis when unemployment is already high.

    And if you think importing hordes of H1-B workers will "save" the U.S., you're a deluded fool. The main impediment to the U.S. competing is our cost of living, and no, importing a horde of H1-B workers won't help.

    But of course, all of those 5.700.000.000 people from outside America aren't as smart or deserving as real Americans...

    Ah, yes. You don't have a real argument, so you throw in an appeal to emotion.

    Now I am fully aware that this is a fine and dandy way to waste some good earned karma, but sorry, it's much closer to the truth.

    Good job, lock in your +5 with the old "I know this will get me modded down..." trick.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 13, 2010 @09:53AM (#31126548)

    "Whenever I hear people complain about America's dwindling manufacturing base, I always wonder, do these people WANT to work in a factory? I mean, it's great to have steel mills in your country, but they aren't very pleasant places to work. I am fine with the idea of building our manufacturing back up if that's what we want to do, but I'm sure not going to help build it up by working there."

    Working in a factory is a HELLUVA lot better than working at McDonald's, Wal-Mart, or whatever jobs are left in our current post-industrial wasteland. The factories used to provide decent jobs with real pay that could support a family. A lot of people simply are not cut out for intellectual occupations and for them these jobs were great. In the old days these people would have been carpenters, merchants, masons and all varieties of jobs but those jobs were killed by industrialization and now globalization is killing the decent factory job. All that's left is non-productive, garbage, "service-sector" jobs such as retail.

    "A major part of why the manufacturing base is leaving is because there aren't enough unskilled laborers here. Tons of people come from Mexico, China, and every other developing country; why not send the manufacturing to them instead if they want it so much? Then they don't have to leave their families and homes and make dangerous journeys to America (contrary to what some believe, not all foreigners in underdeveloped countries are desperate to come to America, and not all of them want to stay once they get here). It's win-win."

    The reason people were coming to America is because America paid better wages. In that way, America's economy lifted the world up by making global competitors compete for the labor by paying them higher salaries. Now, the bourgeoisie have discovered that they can simply move all the business overseas and go back to the good ol' days of corrupt, robber barren capitalism. Now instead of lifting the world up, we're being driven into the poverty of the rest of the world.

  • Re:No, not well. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by monoi (811392) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @11:12AM (#31127028)

    Secondly, if that 2k a year is not coming out of his pocket, then whose pocket is it coming out of, mine? So that's great, my dream of sending my son to college or even having a retirement just evaporated so I can foot the bill for someone else's problem.

    What a lovely country you live in, filled with wonderful human beings like yourself who would happily let a stranger suffer so that they could buy a bigger TV. How glad I am that I won't ever live there, and you probably won't ever leave. It's a great deal all round.

  • by walterbyrd (182728) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @01:56PM (#31128394)

    Kim Walesh, chief strategist in San Jose's Office of Economic Development, said the report "really nailed" the valley's increasing need for a healthy educational system. Because of post-9/11 restrictions on immigration and increased opportunities in India and China, the valley can't rely on foreign talent as it has in the past 25 years.

    Similar articles come out practically every day. They all have the same message: US education system is inadequate, we need the "best and brightest" from offshore nations. Funny thing: the "best and brightest" always come from nations where the average wage is about $1 a day. No smart people in the UK, Germany, or any 1st world nation.

    Strange how the country that build that IT industry is no longer capable of producing IT workers. No qualified IT workers from the country responsible for Cisco, Apple, Microsoft, IBM, Oracle, Yahoo, Google, eBay, Amazon, Intel, Dell, etc. No good scientists from a country where one top university holds more Nobel prizes in technology than the entire nation of India.

    Remember the massive tech layoffs from one year ago? Practically all the major tech companies fired Americans by the thousands, if not tens of thousands. Yet with all of those unemployed, yet highly qualifed, US techies we need more offshore labor to take even more US jobs. Even with the highest unemployment since the great depression.

    BTW: US restrictions on guest workers were a complete toothless joke, and US companies got all the H1Bs they wanted anyway.

  • by drsquare (530038) on Saturday February 13, 2010 @04:41PM (#31129702)

    Whenever I hear people complain about America's dwindling manufacturing base, I always wonder, do these people WANT to work in a factory? I mean, it's great to have steel mills in your country, but they aren't very pleasant places to work. I am fine with the idea of building our manufacturing back up if that's what we want to do, but I'm sure not going to help build it up by working there.

    You say that from the perspective of someone with a comfortable office job. I'd imagine there are millions of people either unemployed or stuck burger flipping who would very much like the sort of factory job their parents had that gave a lifetime of secure, well-paid employment. At least, before the destruction of the unions which lead to factories full of minimum-wage temp jobs.

    Factories may be unpleasant places, but I'd imagine that for a male breadwinner, an honest shift of hard labour in a steel mill or a mine gives them much more self-respect that wearing a uniform putting baked beans on the shelves of a supermarket.

Assembly language experience is [important] for the maturity and understanding of how computers work that it provides. -- D. Gries

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