That said, yeah, a lot of modern machines leave their predecessors in the dust, computationally. Chess algorithms
Two killers, i.e. 'making them so complex only
1/ Not having the time to clean stuff up. If it works, management generally wants you to move on to the next fire.
2/ Documentation oversights and assumptions. "Check the syslog for errors" doesn't cover what to do when errors arise. I'd reached the point of coding the automated sending of e-mails on errors - with the fix included - to the person running a job, on dozens of issues. Things that one just assumes after years of experience are complete show-stoppers to someone who doesn't have that same experience. And it only shows up when someone else does try and run something, per the documentation.
&, of course, 1.5, not having the time to do any documentation
I like automating the heck out of stuff, handing it off to some poor schlub to run as needed/scheduled, and moving on to the next problem. But I also recognize that it's done me out of a job a couple of times. Which really, truly sucks.
The best advice I received from a friend was "Don't make yourself indispensible. You won't get vacations."
It's a trade-off. I think I prefer being viewed as a valuable asset, getting new challenges, rather than the only guy who knows how to fix something.
That said, US law does support wrongful termination, in many states. Which, strangely enough, covers people quitting when their work is substantially changed
The legal fiction of firing, and then rehiring for the same position, at a lower wage, has been stomped on by the courts.
Although - and this is where things get interesting - I'm wondering if 10 weeks is long enough to get around the courts' interpretation of the prior precedent. That's slightly over two months, which far exceeds the previous cases.
The reason the courts originally jumped in was because this was used as a union busting tactic. A company's workforce goes union, the company lays them all off
But man, Circuit City? The company that even beats cable companies at the BBB for number of complaints? Buying there is idiotic enough (Go NewEgg!), working there about the same.