Congressman Complains That iPads Are Killing Jobs In The Paper Industry

from the what's-next,-that-automobiles-are-killing-jobs-in-the-buggy-whip-industry? dept

Incredible. Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. apparently decided to cement his position as a full-on luddite by going on the floor of the House to claim that the iPad was killing jobs in the paper, publishing and bookselling industries, while really just creating jobs in China. You can see the video here:
If you don't want to watch the video, here's the key part:
"A few short weeks ago I came to the House floor after having purchased an iPad and said that I happened to believe, Mr. Speaker, that at some point in time this new device, which is now probably responsible for eliminating thousands of American jobs. Now Borders is closing stores because, why do you need to go to Borders anymore? Why do you need to go to Barnes & Noble? Buy an iPad and download your newspaper, download your book, download your magazine. Chicago State University, in my Congressional district, in Freshman class, they're not being given textbooks any more. They're all being given iPads as they enter school. President Wayne Watson is hoping for a textbookless campus within four years, where this state university they no longer have textbooks! Well what becomes of publishing companies and publishing company jobs? What becomes of bookstores and libraries and all of the jobs associated with paper? In the not too distant future, these jobs simply won't exist."
Now, to be fair, I think he's trying to make a slightly different point than most are getting from this, but doing an incredibly bad job of it. This can certainly be read as a traditional luddite screed against iPads. Later in the speech, he admits that the iPad may have made life more efficient for Americans.

What is true is that disruptive innovation does shift around jobs. No one denies that, and I think that's the point he was trying to make, and then arguing that Congress should be helping those displaced workers. Of course, instead, it comes off as an anti-iPad screed. Separately, it comes off a bit as an anti-Chinese screed, because later in the speech he bitches about the fact that the iPad is made in China, so they get the "benefits" of it while Americans do not.

Of course, that's simply wrong. As Gary Shapiro points out in his article (linked above), the Chinese get very little of the value of the iPad, and the reason the jobs are there is because they're low cost jobs:
The Chinese believe their people only get a few dollars of the iPadís cost, as the profits, research and development, and many of the components are sourced from outside China. The Chinese only get paid for the lowest value assembly their workers provide. Most Americans do not want this type of repetitive assembly work Ė and if Apple used Americans to make their products, the products would be much more expensive and less accessible to most Americans. Yet, devices that access the Internet allow the poorest among us to have access to a wealth of education and information.
But the key point that Rep. Jackson appears to be totally missing is how the iPad and other technology innovations create a ton of new jobs in the US as well. Technology disruption does that sort of thing. Automated phone switching was supposed to be horrible in that it would put all those human operators out of work... but it also enabled the internet, which now certainly accounts for much greater employment opportunities.

Rather than complaining about the iPad, or saying that it's killing jobs, why isn't Jackson encouraging more such innovation which creates new jobs?


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Jon B. (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:04am

    "But the key point that Rep. Jackson appears to be totally missing is how the iPad and other technology innovations create a ton of new jobs in the US as well."

    This is absolutely true, but those jobs are probably further separated from the manufacture of durable and non-durable goods than the manufacture of the iPads themselves, and I do think that's a problem. Of course, Mr Jackson is probably not arguing the best economic ways to bring the manufacture of iPads to America ... It would be awesome to have BOTH the core manufacturing jobs and the support jobs stay here, but that's a whole different subject that Mr Jackson very much the wrong person to debate.

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:05am

    I know a way to create more jobs. Since IP is becoming the primary product of the Western economies (as manufacturing decreases), why not protect IP?

    Oh right. In order to that we all have to become slaves in a dystopian 1984 horror story. Why? Because this website says so.

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:06am

    Job security is not the governments job. It's called free market capitalism.

    and if the U.S. wants the IPad to be produced in the U.S. then abolish the patents that prevent it from being so.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:07am

    Re:

    Why would you need support jobs for iPads here? They can be manufactured overseas. Most of this stuff is just disposable if it breaks. Phone tech support if needed can be done by phone from India.

     

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    Chuck, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:09am

    Lots less paper

    Means there will be a lot more trees out there eh?
    Can't see the harm in that.

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:10am

    Re:

    "free market capitalism"?

    No such thing. Not on this planet anyway. Antitrust, regulatory bodies, bailouts, police ...

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:10am

    Re:

    So, because others do innovate and we don't, we should use IP as a means of preventing others from innovating?

    IP is not a product that does anyone any good. It's just a claim to a monopoly privilege. Your argument is akin to

    "Since we can't innovate, lets start claiming monopolies on what others do".

    If anything, your argument points out that IP is not needed, innovation occurs in other countries without it. and the U.S. already protects IP while these other countries do not, how is that working for us? Who's innovating and who's stalling?

    and don't tell me that they're their innovation is a result of them copying all of our ideas that we come up with and never implement.

     

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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:13am

    Re:

    It's not the patents.. It's simple competition. The U.S. has to compete with China for these jobs and China is providing what the companies want: low cost production.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:14am

    Mr Jackson needs to actually understand how tech works and is made. Progression of technology is a way of life. Every generation sees the fall of an older industry and the rise of a new one.

    the fact that the current industries that are being phased out (newspapers mainly)have not really done too much to accept tech is their own failings. News is news, its has no value except the media its printed on; imo it has become right to get our news for free. you can't have an exclusive story since we all are reporters with twitter, facebook. our local stations in mpls, mn have embraced social media and use it to help get news tips and stories and do investigative reports on. the newspapers need to take this approach more. just my usual .02

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:15am

    Re: Re:

    IP maximists have this idealistic viewpoint,

    "The U.S. comes up with all of these ideas, we never implement any of them, but other countries who never come up with any ideas of their own simply copy and implement all of our ideas instead and they end up benefiting from all of our ideas without compensating us."

    Get real.

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:16am

    Re: Re:

    "because others do innovate"

    This iPad post isn't about about innovation. It's about how Western labor will never be competitive again for manufacturing compared to 3rd world factories. Even for tech support, Western workers are not competitive. That has nothing to do with IP law whatsoever. It is strictly a fact of industrialization.

    As a result, IDEAS are about the only thing of high value the West can still produce, and those are being ripped off.

     

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    MrWilson, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:19am

    The distinguished gentleman from Illinois should consider the decrease in debt that students will emerge from college with due to the decrease in textbooks costs.

    What good is getting a low paying manufacturing job building more expensive ipads on American soil if it won't pay off the tens of thousands of student loan debt you have?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:19am

    wow... I have met him. From what I have seen he seemed at the time to be way on top of tech (as far as being a gadget person) This honestly surprises me.

     

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    Steve R. (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:19am

    No Wonder a Balanced Budget Can't be Passed

    If Mr.Jacksons' rant is indicative of the critical thinking skills of the rest of our Congress people, no wonder our country is in deep trouble.

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:19am

    Re: Re:

    One of the problems is that China puts high tariffs on U.S. imports to China. While I'm generally very against tariffs, the U.S. needs to be stronger on this front and threaten with tariffs of its own if China doesn't reduce its tariffs.

    While I'm no fan of Donald Trump for president, I think he's right about this one.

     

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    Jon B. (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:26am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I can't tell if you're serious or how much.

    The point of my point was that America very well COULD be competitive in manufacturing and other jobs if we wanted to be.

    You can't have an economy built on "ideas".

     

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    Wiggs (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:27am

    Re:

    "...consider the decrease in debt that students will emerge from college with due to the decrease in textbooks costs."

    A nice thought, but currently not the case. My school is offering e-book versions of a lot of the textbooks. The publisher is still requiring them to charge about the same price as a used copy of the printed book for this electronic version... maybe $25 less than a new copy.

    This is, unfortunately, not going to save anyone any student loan debt unless publishers wise up and realize that e-book versions should not cost as much as the 'dead-tree' version.

     

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  18.  
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    Jon B. (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:27am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Exactly this, on both point.

    Trump should be secretary of something. The problem is, I don't think he wants to be anyone's secretary.

     

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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:32am

    Re: Re: Re:

    So what? Do it then. Threaten all you want.

    China can set their policies however they want just like the U.S. can. The bottom line is the U.S. wants what China supplies more than China wants what the U.S. supplies.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:33am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    These people seriously think that Americans should do nothing besides sit around and come up with ideas all day for others to simply copy and pay us for, as if those others can't come up with ideas of their own and they need us to do nothing besides sitting around and coming up with their ideas for them.

    I mean, seriously.

    Imagine if someone told their boss that he shouldn't work because he should just sit around and come up with ideas all day for other employees to simply copy and he should get paid for only doing that? and, furthermore, he should get paid more than the other employees. As if those other employees can't come up with any ideas of their own and need him to do nothing else. That's not how the real world works. Now get to work.

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:33am

    Yes, we are not trying hard enough to win the race to the bottom!

     

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  22.  
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    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:36am

    Yeah! Why isn't anybody hauling around stone tablets anymore?

     

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  23.  
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    Rich, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:46am

    Re: Lots less paper

    That a myth. Most paper products come from tree farms, not deforestation.

     

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  24.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:46am

    Re: Re:

    plus you can't resell your ebook version at the end of the semester.

     

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  25.  
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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:49am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Why not? Should be covered under the first sale doctrine.

     

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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:51am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    heh, take away the ideas part and thats how the real works :)

     

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  27.  
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    Chosen Reject (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:53am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Oh please no. Please read The Wealth of Nations. Adam Smith spent a good portion of that book explaining how tariffs are bad for the country they're implemented in, as well as the debunking the whole "balance of trade" ridiculousness.

    Tariffs are a way of trying to make a nation more wealthy by increasing the costs of things. It's utterly asinine. If the Chinese can make something cheaper, let them make it cheaper. The Americans that use those things (either as an end to itself, or in the manufacture of other things) will save money by buying it from them. The Americans who can't compete with the Chinese in those things so put their capital to use in something they can do better at than the Chinese. Tariffs do nothing but increase the profits of a few local manufacturers, while decreasing the profits of a nation and the rest of its citizens.

     

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  28.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:53am

    Re: Re:

    For two countries to be able to benefit from trade, the only thing either of those countries needs to have is a comparative advantage. It doesn't matter if one country has an absolute advantage or not, it doesn't matter which country has an absolute advantage, if one country has a comparative advantage compared to another country, both countries benefit from trade.

    Us "competing" with them is fine, but even if they produce many things better than we do, we can produce some things comparatively better than they do and we can both benefit from trade in opposed to not trading.

    Both countries are better off freely trading than not trading, but one of the problems is the high tariffs that China imposes on the U.S. that keep us in debt. What does China buy with our debt? If it's U.S. property, maybe we need to put higher export tariffs on titles to U.S. property. If the Chinese want us to pay them their debt back then they need to allow us to sell them stuff so they can give us our money back in return. Money is just a means of transferring goods, if we're in debt to them that means we owe them all these goods and services. But they have all these high tariffs which makes it harder for us to pay them back. So then how do they benefit from our debt? They get all this worthless money (or IOU's) and we get all these valuable goods? No, not quite.

     

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  29.  
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    sidewinder, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:54am

    Competitive with 3rd World Factories

    Who wants to be "competitive" with $2/day?

    Why not just re-institute slavery? And make it voluntary?

    I can just hear it now - "Nobody forced you to take this job."

    Meanwhile, wealth concentrates at the top & the American middle class evaporates. What's the biggest market for iPhones? China. Not Chinese assemblers either.

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:56am

    Gutenberg and his stupid printing press...

    Putting thousands and thousands of scribes out of work!

     

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  31.  
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    P3T3R5ON (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:58am

    Evolve

    Evolve, adapt, overcome or die.

    Their problem, not the tax payers problem... stop wasting my tax dollars by opening your mouth about such pitiful discussion points!!!

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 11:59am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Adam Smith spent a good portion of that book explaining how tariffs are bad for the country they're implemented in, as well as the debunking the whole "balance of trade" ridiculousness."

    I completely agree, but it's also bad for a country when other countries implement them against us. I'm against tariffs, but tell that to China.

    But how is China benefiting from our money? How do they benefit from the tariffs? Because it creates jobs for them? Well, jobs aren't an end of themselves. They're producing all this stuff for us (which does benefit the U.S.) in return for .... worthless paper or IOU's (debt) and they're not letting us sell them anything in return because of their tariffs. How do they benefit when they give us stuff and they get nothing in return? Or are they buying something in return? Is is title to U.S. property? If that's what it is, and if the U.S. is afraid of losing too much of its property to China as a result, maybe higher export tariffs to U.S. property tariffs are in order? How exactly does China benefit from this debt?

    I think part of it is that, sure, it makes the U.S. lazy and so we get to have all this stuff without working while the Chinese advances and works hard for what they have. Well, how exactly does that benefit China again? Giving us stuff in return for nothing benefits them nothing neither in the short term nor the long term.

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:01pm

    Re: Competitive with 3rd World Factories

    "Meanwhile, wealth concentrates at the top & the American middle class evaporates."

    That's what we already have. The Chinese, on the other hand ... (not that I support doing what China is doing either).

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:02pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    err...

    maybe higher export tariffs on U.S. property titles are in order?

     

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  35.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:03pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "You can't have an economy built on "ideas"."

    Sure you can. The software industry is built on ideas. The movie industry is built on ideas. The pharmaceutical industry is built on ideas.

    Cumulatively, those alone represent hundreds of billions a year to Western economies.

    But of course, restricting ideas with monopolies is "wrong", so that should all be stopped, right? That way, Chinese factories can legally pump out generic clones at a fraction of the price, right?

    You can't compete directly with sweat shop labor. The only way to compete is to focus on your strengths, and for the West, those are in ideas.

     

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  36.  
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    KeithV (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:06pm

    Re:

    True or not, he might as well argue that the lightbulb is destroying the candle-making industry.

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:08pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "You can't have an economy built on "ideas"."

    Sure you can. The software industry is built on ideas. The movie industry is built on ideas. The pharmaceutical industry is built on ideas.

    Cumulatively, those alone represent hundreds of billions a year to Western economies.

    But of course, restricting ideas with monopolies is "wrong", so that should all be stopped, right? That way, Chinese factories can legally pump out generic clones at a fraction of the price, right?

    You can't compete directly with sweat shop labor. The only way to compete is to focus on your strengths, and for the West, those are in ideas.

     

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  38.  
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    Chosen Reject (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:11pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I completely agree, but it's also bad for a country when other countries implement them against us. I'm against tariffs, but tell that to China.
    If you agree that a tariff hurts the country that implements it, then you agree that China's tariffs hurt China. And you want America to inflict itself with tariffs in retaliation to them hurting themselves? That makes no sense.

     

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    jjmsan (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:14pm

    Re: Re:

    It sure is amazing what a real free market can do.

     

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    Will Sizemore (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:16pm

    This reminds me of when I was a young soldier, refusing to put any effort into get promoted in the Army. I ended up working for morons like these people and said, "Damn. If I can do better than these guys without even trying, imagine what I can do if I invest some effort into it. Fine, First Sergeant, you win. I'll go to your promotion board."

    I didn't get promoted until I went to the board again, years later, but I certainly stepped up and helped inspire a new generation of junior leaders.

    Mike, I'm serious. When I eventually start campaigning, I want to speak with you. Any tech-savvy politician who doesn't value this blog is missing a HUGE opportunity.

     

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  41.  
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    chuck, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:17pm

    Re: Re: Lots less paper

    I said a lot more trees not where they came from.
    Does a tree in a tree farm produce less oxygen for the atmosphere (or remove less CO2 for that matter) than one in the forest?

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Maybe the moral of the story is that the U.S. being in this "state of debt" isn't that big of a deal. We'll pay China back when they let us. We'll pay them back when they remove their tariffs and allow us to sell them stuff in return. Then we'll start getting to work and allowing them to get back what we owe them in the form of products that we give them in return for reducing what we owe them.

    Or, if they want us to pay them back in the form of investments in U.S. property/title to land, that's fine too, but we'll put huge export tariffs on that. We'll charge them an extra premium for it when they ask.

     

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  43.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:19pm

    Re: Re:

    He essentially was, and then saying that the government should help the displaced candle-makers.

    He just said it badly.

     

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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:41pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    He also said, essentially, "Don't trust the merchants." So take their recommendations with a grain or two of salt.

     

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  45.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:43pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Imagine that my name is the U.S. and your name is China. We both agree that poker chips should be a currency of exchange between us. So, produce and give you 1000K in poker chips and you work to make and give me my IPad, you work to make and give me my shoes, etc... Now I have all these things and all you have in return ... a bunch of poker chips. You never ask me to do anything in return for all of your hard labor, you never give me any poker chips for me to do any labor for you, but I benefit from all your labor.

    But, if and when the time comes, when you do ask me to do stuff for you, is when I'll get to work. and when that time comes, I'll charge whatever amount of poker chips that I want for my labor as well. We'll negotiate how many goods I will provide you for in return for a given number of chips.

    China is doing all this work for us, giving us all of these products, and they don't ask for anything in return (because of their tariffs). So what? The day China decides to remove its tariffs and their citizens start to ask us for things in return for money, we'll provide.

     

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  46.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 12:44pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    So, I produce and give you 1000K in poker chips *

     

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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Now that sounds like sound advice to me!

     

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    Lyle, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:04pm

    They weren't too damned concerned when the paper factories were being shut down en masse and being shipped overseas. Where's the tears for the hundreds (if not thousands) of people who were laid off who had absolutely nowhere to go in the job market. It's not like the demand for factory work has gone up in the last 20 years and most of those factories were the only thing sustaining small towns across the northeast. The textbook salesmen can get a job selling something else.

     

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  49.  
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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:06pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Thats fine, then I'm selling all these chips for dirt cheap to whoever wants em. Anyone who want's any of the U.S.'s poker chips, I'll sell you some for 1/10th whatever they are asking for em.

     

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  50.  
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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:17pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    The dotcom bubble all over again.

    Anyway, you are skipping a step somewhere. China has it's own laws so whatever laws you set up in your country have no effect on whether the clones China pumps out are legal or not.

     

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  51.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    and what's wrong with that? When those others get that money, they will ask us for goods in return. That will create U.S. jobs when we produce them those goods. If they ask for land in return, then we'll charge them a premium for it via export tariffs.

     

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  52.  
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    Greevar (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:19pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    No, the software industry isn't built on ideas. It's built on the labor of thousands of people executing ideas. Ideas are worthless. What's valuable are people capable of making those ideas happen. Did the Wright brothers just "think" of the idea of a plane and it just happened? No, they labored, tested, and refined the design until it worked. Their original idea probably didn't look anything like what they finally built.

    "That way, Chinese factories can legally pump out generic clones at a fraction of the price, right?"

    Yes, they should. Why not? They put in their time and labor to create the product, why shouldn't they be able to sell it? Again ideas are worthless without the labor to execute them. Nobody has the right to claim an idea as their property nor do they have the right to bitch when someone else implements the same idea.

    "But of course, restricting ideas with monopolies is 'wrong', so that should all be stopped, right?"

    Yes it is, when you realize that it takes labor to create these things, placing monopolies on the results of that labor make no sense when they can be paid for making it rather than thinking of it.

     

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  53.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:25pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    and if China really wants to take all of my poker chips in return for all of these goods and services that she provides me and then turn around and practically give those poker chips away to others for almost nothing, what good does that do China? It doesn't do her much good so she has little incentive to do that. What she should want are goods and services in return for the goods and services that she provides me.

     

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  54.  
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    Shawn (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    bwaahhaha whoo afternoon coffee out the nose!!

    Oh wait you are serious! Oh I agree they SHOULD be but it does not work that way in the e-book world.

     

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  55.  
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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Good luck with that. I'm still trying to sell these chips even at 1/10th the price now that everyone knows they aren't honoured without some ridiculous catch. Anyway, I aint taken any more chips. You're on your own.

     

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  56.  
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    Overcast (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:39pm

    One of the problems is that China puts high tariffs on U.S. imports to China. While I'm generally very against tariffs, the U.S. needs to be stronger on this front and threaten with tariffs of its own if China doesn't reduce its tariffs.

    While I'm no fan of Donald Trump for president, I think he's right about this one.


    Why not a simple policy...

    We match tariffs country by country. If China charges "X%" - then we do the same. Kinda simple and fair.

     

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  57.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:43pm

    in other news, citizens Complain That Congressmen are Killing Jobs.

     

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  58.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:43pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "The software industry is built on ideas. The movie industry is built on ideas. The pharmaceutical industry is built on ideas."

    Many of those pharmaceutical drugs are funded with tax dollars. That those drugs are patented is a tragedy.

    and just because monopolists benefit from monopolies doesn't mean that those monopolies should exist. Yes, an industry can consist of a monopoly, but industries can exist without monopolies as well. It's not the govt imposed monopoly that creates industries, industries will exist regardless, they just won't be as centralized.

    The lack of monopolies, on the other hand, produces more aggregate output, and the purpose of having an industry to begin with is to produce things for consumers.

    "The only way to compete is to focus on your strengths, and for the West, those are in ideas."

    Yes, the West is somehow granted with the unique ability to come up with ideas. We're special like that. Nobody else can do it or, if they can, we're somehow better at it.

     

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  59.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:54pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "The only way to compete is to focus on your strengths, and for the West, those are in ideas."

    I guess the main problem with your line of thought is that it goes something like this.

    The government grants monopolies on almost everything.

    Those monopolies produce big centralized industries.

    Because those industries are big, and hence their size makes them well known, they are a success.

    The U.S. is successful at producing these types of goods.

    But that kinda logic isn't good. First of all, people in other countries are probably much more aware of the movie (and product) producers in their country than the ones in our country, and people in the U.S. are more aware of our movie/product producers. Just because we have movie/product producers that are well known to us doesn't mean that they don't have ones that are well known to them.

    It might also be possible other countries are more open to the cultural products of others than the U.S.

    Secondly, just because other countries may have less centralized art/product creation than the U.S, and hence it's more difficult for a single producer to gain widespread notoriety, doesn't mean that they produce less of these products than we do and are worse at producing these things than we are.

    and I'm not really sure that ideas are a strength in the West. How do you measure the strength of our ideas vs the strength of theirs (and please don't say number of patents)? I think the best measurement is in who does better in the market place. Since they are doing better in the market place, maybe it's because they have better ideas than we do. At least they have a better idea of how to compete.

     

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  60.  
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    Qritiqal (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:57pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Manufacturing and tech support jobs went overseas as a result of our SUCCESS, which caused our average wages to far exceed those of some other countries.

    If you want those jobs to come back, the only way that will happen is when the USA is a third world country. Your beloved President is well on his way to making that happen.

     

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  61.  
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    Overcast (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:57pm

    Yes, the West is somehow granted with the unique ability to come up with ideas. We're special like that. Nobody else can do it or, if they can, we're somehow better at it.

    Not so much - but in tyrannical, dictatorial, socialist and communist governments - you see little of it and why would you bother?

    If you are going to make "X" amount of money regardless of what you do - why bother with anything above the minimum to get by?

    I mean - seriously; how many 'new ideas' come out of China? North Korea? Iran?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_science_and_technology_in_China#Scientific_and_tech nological_stagnation



    ....

    How many come out of Ireland? UK? USA? Japan? Germany? France? Countries that since the Industrial Revolution have mostly been 'free to innovate', obvious exceptions depending on the time frame, of course.

    http://www.greatachievements.org/?id=2984

    http://corporate.britannica.com/press/inventions.ht ml

     

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  62.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 1:58pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You're apparently smarter than China.

     

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  63.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:01pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    But isn't that kinda the point. Now China has incentive to give us back those chips in return for something. We're perfectly willing to produce stuff for them in return for those chips and if China wants to give/sell those chips to other countries in return for stuff, that's fine too. We'll produce for those other countries in return for those chips (which will create U.S. jobs just as well). Or if China wants to lower its tariff barriers and allow its consumers to buy from us so that we can produce things for them in return, that's fine too. It's not that the U.S. is unwilling to do stuff for China in return for the chips. When the time comes, we will, so those chips still have value. We may not give them exactly what they want (ie: cheap land), but we'll produce cars for them. It's that China simply isn't asking for anything. Their loss.

     

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  64.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:02pm

    What The Fuck? This guy must be joking.

     

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  65.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:07pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Great, so China should just be free to strip copy protection from software and sell it as their own?

     

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  66.  
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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:13pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I don't know about China, but I personally hate it when people try to scam me with bait and switch crap like that. Also, if you had something I felt would be in my best interests to buy I would already be spending my chips on it.

     

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  67.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:14pm

    Standard operating procedure

    In the world of tomorrow democracy doesn't provide solutions it provides the rabble rabble rabble rabble of the south park variety. Because CSPAN needs ratings dam it!

     

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  68.  
    identicon
    Geoffrey in London, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:27pm

    All those American jobs

    Are we surprised when our congressman make statements, speeches, or effect policy without knowing the facts? I used to work for a publisher so let's break down all those jobs lost.

    Authors. Yes mostly American or Western, but more often than you think factual research is being body shopped overseas. But it's not like they lose out.

    Typesetters. Guess what? Modern typesetting for book printing is another industry dominated by India.

    Printers. Think books are printed in the US? Think again. Made in China. Though personally I have no clue about the paper.

    Design. While this is hit and miss, more and more work is finding their way overseas.

    Editors/proofreaders. Depending on the topic/sector, this is either entirely overseas or still here at home. But like with authors, it's not like iPad books don't need spell checking right?

    The only thing he may have a point on is newspaper publishing. That is still entirely local. But saying the iPad is killing the newspaper industry is like saying the guy who jumped off the building was killed by those dangerous sidewalks.

     

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  69.  
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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:41pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Money isn't just a means of transfering goods, it is also the lifeblood of your country's economy. I think actually they don't want to buy anything they just stockpile it to use as leverage.

     

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  70.  
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    Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:48pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Great, so China should just be free to strip copy protection from software and spread ideas and content?

    FTFY. I think you confused this discussion with some other discussion about a different subject.

    You ask the question like its a bad thing. What exactly is wrong with copying good ideas? What exactly is wrong with improving on them and spreading them?

     

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  71.  
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    crade (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:50pm

    Re: Re: Re: Lots less paper

    the farm is only there because they need it to make paper. Without the need to make paper, new farms wont be made, and old farms will be sold to make parking lots.

     

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  72.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 2:58pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "but I personally hate it when people try to scam me with bait and switch crap like that. "

    But that's not what the U.S. is doing. We're buying stuff from them in return for money that we will produce stuff for. It's China's fault for not buying stuff back, not our fault for not selling stuff back in return. In trying to "scam" us, China is really just scamming itself. But that's not our faults.

     

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  73.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 3:05pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Sounds like about every large corporation I've ever worked for...

     

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  74.  
    identicon
    thelonelybit, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 3:38pm

    hey, if the paper industry can't compete, then it SHOULD go out of business. Trying to prop up a failing industry will do much more harm to the economy than the loss of jobs will.

    If your really so concerned about losing jobs overseas, than you should work on making America a viable place for companies to produce products by cutting inflation. If inflation wasn't so high, than people wouldn't need to be paid as much to maintain their standard of living, so products can be manufactured at more reasonable prices, with will allow the US to compete with other job markets.

    Unfortunately, the government's response has been to poor billions of dollars into the economy, causing massive inflation, which causes wages to go up and making businesses less viable in the US. Great job guys. You would think a basic economics course would have been required for these polititions to graduate college, but I guess not.

     

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  75.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 4:18pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Even for tech support, Western workers are not competitive."

    So the U.S. has a competitive advantage on ideas, yet when it comes to tech support (which is sorta the communication of ideas), we don't have a competitive advantage?

     

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  76.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 4:33pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    (also, a lot of U.S. phone company regulations seek to restrict competition in the telephone / long distance arena as well. Long distance is expensive in the U.S. compared to other countries, and it's possible that artificially higher communication prices contributes to our inability to compete)


    ie: see (though this one relates to broadband)

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100826/17381010788.shtml

    (U.S. phone companies have been known to push for regulations that keep competitors out of the market. Long distance calls, especially for business lines, is very expensive in the U.S. and tech support forums would require business lines)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  77.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 4:33pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    (also, a lot of U.S. phone company regulations seek to restrict competition in the telephone / long distance arena as well. Long distance is expensive in the U.S. compared to other countries, and it's possible that artificially higher communication prices contributes to our inability to compete)


    ie: see (though this one relates to broadband)

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100826/17381010788.shtml

    (U.S. phone companies have been known to push for regulations that keep competitors out of the market. Long distance calls, especially for business lines, is very expensive in the U.S. and tech support forums would require business lines)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  78.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 5:02pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    (despite everything I said above, I'm still in favor of pressuring China to remove their tariffs with the threat of retaliatory tariffs if they don't).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  79.  
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    bernadette (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 9:18pm

    jesse jackson jr. against ipad tech

    This is not about whether jjjr. is against ipads and/or technology. Follow the money. He sees a history of prosperity in the paper industry as a format to launch a campaign against a financially solid technology. And he's right. Technology has already overcome many industries. But the question is "who's to blame?". The paper industry has had thirty odd years to see the writing on the wall (or on the computer). If the paper industry had been as intelligent and willing to see their inevitable demise as they were to destroy forests, they would have acted appropriately. They would have put their main finacial assets into the up and coming technology while still keeping a small holding in the paper business. It could have been a win/win situation for them. But greed was their downfall. I don't feel terribly bad for the CEO's, however the employees deserve some reflection. This shows how important employees are to any business and business decisions. But, that takes us into another area of discussion.

     

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  80.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 21st, 2011 @ 9:44pm

    Re: jesse jackson jr. against ipad tech

    It's really about complacency. These people are happy with the pay they get for the (little amount of) work they do and competing in a free and changing market creates uncertainty. They may have to work harder for their money, they may lose their jobs, can't have that. Must run to big brother for protection.

    Unfortunately, that's where everyone runs to these days for job security. and, for the most part, it works.

     

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  81.  
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    Will Sizemore (profile), Apr 21st, 2011 @ 9:49pm

    AC 80, that just about sums it up.

     

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  82.  
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    Michael Long (profile), Apr 22nd, 2011 @ 1:01am

    Re:

    I guess that depends on what you mean by "further separated"?

    Are there not hundreds, if not thousands of Americans at Apple and elsewhere who create and design the iPads and tablets and write the system software for them? Right here, in the US?

    Are there not hundreds, if not thousands of Americans running online stores like iTunes and the App store and Amazon and so on?

    Are there not thousands of Americans busy writing iOS and Android and Windows 7 apps and software? Creating cases and accessories?

    Are there not thousands, if not millions of American workers creating the books and music and articles and web sites we consume daily using these devices?

    The ripple effects here are wide and deep.

    iPads and tablets are disruptive technologies, true. But the horse breeders and saddle and buggy whip makers probably said the same thing about the automobile.

     

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  83.  
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    bdhoro (profile), Apr 22nd, 2011 @ 7:09am

    OBSOLETE

    Isn't it good when new technology makes old behavior obsolete? Doesn't that free up incredible amounts of man hours for working in jobs that people actually still need?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  84.  
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    bdhoro (profile), Apr 22nd, 2011 @ 7:14am

    Should have been 1 post

    Like doesn't everybody see that now that there is an iPad and such that all the man hours spent doing things the old, slow way, printing and delivering papers and books etc, are a complete waste and now contribute essentially nothing to society? These industries are becoming dead-weight and the quicker they're gone the better.

     

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  85.  
    identicon
    Anon, Apr 27th, 2011 @ 8:21pm

    Re: Re:

    Yeah, because "police" are incompatible with capitalism.

     

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  86.  
    identicon
    vdeogmer, May 21st, 2011 @ 9:18am

    I don't see how the iPad is killing Jobs, he seems to be able to afford plenty of turtlenecks.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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