Monday, October 18, 2010

Cheap: The High Cost of Discount Culture by Ellen Ruppel Shell

Outsourcing:

Shell discusses the outsourcing of jobs from the US to other countries. Because the US pays higher wages than many other countres, it is cheaper for companies to have their goods made outside of the US. This, in turn, reduces prices for American consumers, which is good in the short-term. However, it also puts many Americans out of jobs, which is bad in the long-term.

A previous poster notes that s/he always looks at the hidden costs. Outsourcing has hidden costs - the destruction of the American workforce and increased unemployment. Questions to consider:

  • why do American companies continue to outsource despite its negative effect on the US economy?
  • why do they continue to outsource customer service centers when so many Americans are unsatisfied with their experience with such centers?
  • Is it all tied to a growing lack of empathy in US society? See:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/michaeltomasky/2010/oct/18/empathy-deficit

  • does the desire for cheapness conflict with and stifle empathy?
Once again, let the debate begin.

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