Framing and Second Level Agenda Setting of the Issue of Outsourcing: Lou Dobbs and Thomas Friedman 2003-2004

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Framing and Second Level Agenda Setting of the Issue of Outsourcing: Lou Dobbs and Thomas Friedman 2003-2004
WESTERMAN, JOHN G. ( Author, Primary )
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Business structures ( jstor )
Cultural identity ( jstor )
Globalization ( jstor )
Indian culture ( jstor )
Journalism ( jstor )
Middle class ( jstor )
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Outsourcing ( jstor )
Political candidates ( jstor )
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Copyright 2005 by John G. Westerman


TABLE OF CONTENTS page ABSTRACT .......................................................................................................................iv CHAPTER 1. PURPOSE AND SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY...........................................................1 2. CONTRIBUTION TO EXISTING KNOWLEDGE.....................................................3 3. METHODS....................................................................................................................5 4. LITERATURE REVIEW..............................................................................................9 5. PRELIMINARY ANALYSIS.....................................................................................21 5.1. Lou Dobbs Tonight, CNN....................................................................................21 5.2. Thomas Friedman, New York Times...................................................................25 6. PRELIMINARY CONCLUSIONS.............................................................................29 7. IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS..............................................................................................31 7.1. Lou Dobbs............................................................................................................31 7.2. Thomas Friedman.................................................................................................41 APPENDIX A. DATA SAMPLE: THOMAS FRIEDMAN.................................................................51 B. DATA SAMPLE: LOU DOBBS.................................................................................53 LIST OF REFERENCES...................................................................................................56 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH.............................................................................................61 iii


Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts in Mass Communication FRAMING AND SECOND LEVEL AGENDA SETTING OF THE ISSUE OF OUTSOURCING: LOU DOBBS A ND THOMAS FRIEDMAN 2003-2004 By John G. Westerman May 2005 Chair: Marilyn Roberts Major Department: Journalism and Communications Framing and second level agenda setting theory examine the manner by which the media brings attention to, and attempts to influence awareness and cognition of, a newsworthy issue. This study looks at the manner by which two prominent agenda setting media figures construct their media messages using frames and second level agenda setting attributes. By approaching framing and agenda setting theory in terms of a process of design and delivery, this study contributes to the existing body of research with its in-depth analysis. The end goal of this study is to examine how the media attempts to set the public agenda for a given issue, and how they attempt to persuade the public towards a specific belief system concerning that issue . iv


CHAPTER 1 PURPOSE AND SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY The great fortunes so suddenly and so easily acquired in Bengal and the other British settlements in the East Indies, may satisfy us that, as the wages of labour are very low, so the profits of stock are very high in those ruined countries. – Adam Smith, Wealth of Nations While America’s attention focused on Iraq and terrorism in the months following 9/11, curious happenings were underway in India. Since the de-socialization of the Indian economy following the emergence of the Hindu Nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party in 1991, India invested in the future by opening itself up to international trade and educating its youth in the hard sciences. These actions brought a surge of intellectual capital in India, producing hundreds of thousands of computer scientists, engineers, and workers skilled in a multitude of industries including science, health, and engineering. Then, in the late 1990s, innovations in telecommunications and Internet technology brought India its next big break, opening the doors to a new, networked global economy. This enabled the outsourcing boom that began in the months following the dot com crash of 2000. As outsourcing to places like India, Russia, Singapore, and the Philippines picked up in the early 00s, a tremor of discontent overtook the United States when educated, experienced, and skilled American white collar workers began to see their jobs taken away from them and moved overseas. By the 3 rd quarter of 2003, the media began to pick up on domestic consternation brought on by outsourcing, and put the issue into the limelight. Media figures like CNN correspondent Lou Dobbs have been at the front of a 1


2 negative campaign against what he has called the “Exportation of America,” while others, like New York Times foreign affairs columnist Thomas Friedman, have praised and advocated globalization and outsourcing. This study intends to take a qualitative approach to analyzing the topic of outsourcing as more than just a political or economic issue discussed by the media – but as something that has been framed through the agenda setting functions of the media. Though opinions continue to be formed on outsourcing on a daily basis by people outside of the media who are directly affected by it, there is the rest of the world for whom it may seem a distant threat, or an elated opportunity. By taking into account the theories and postulations of framing and second-level agenda setting theory, the manner by which these two perspectives on the issue of outsourcing present an interesting case on the media in their efforts to not only tell the public what issues to think about, but how they should think about those issues.


CHAPTER 2 CONTRIBUTION TO EXISTING KNOWLEDGE Following the development of second-level agenda studies by scholars like McCombs and Shaw (1972), studies in agenda setting theory have developed from the original postulate that the media tells people what to think about but not how to think, to the postulation that the media tells people what to think about and how to think about it. Using a mixed method based on framing and agenda setting theories, second level agenda setting examines the attributes of a particular media message, and how these attributes are transmitted to personal cognition. As the receiver of the media message is alerted to an issue through the primary agenda setting function of the object, the second level of agenda setting engages in the construction of belief systems through the transmission of attributes to the receiver of the message. Two prominent voices involved in the media discussion on outsourcing are New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, and CNN news talk show host Lou Dobbs. These two journalists are polarized in their viewpoints on the outsourcing issue. Friedman is in favor of outsourcing, while Dobbs is against it. As Friedman and Dobbs have provided a significant amount of coverage to the issue over the past two years, they have framed the issue in a manner consistent with their personal viewpoints. This study intends to show that Friedman and Dobbs are highly opinionated in their coverage, and use their influence as prominent media figures as a platform for persuading their audience to follow their beliefs 3


4 The context of this study doesn’t necessarily focus on proving or disproving framing or first or second level agenda setting theory. Rather, this is an application of the framing and agenda setting theory on messages that have been conveyed by the media in an effort to provide additional insight on the agenda setting function of the media. By examining the content of media messages related to the outsourcing issue in the context of framing and second level agenda setting theory, this study will contribute to the greater body of framing and agenda setting research by providing some new insights into the nature of the media’s function as agenda setter, communicator, and oft-times demagogue.


CHAPTER 3 METHODS At the highest level of abstraction, the focus of this study served as a rhetorical analysis on the use of second-level agenda setting attributes in the context of the outsourcing issue. Primary data sources for the study were news coverage on globalization and outsourcing during 2003 and 2004, with two media personalities – Lou Dobbs and Thomas Friedman – as the focus. The first data source was a set of 30 transcripts from Dobb’s CNN series “Exporting America,” running from 2003 through 2004. The second source of comparison is a set of 12 transcripts of television and radio broadcast interviews with Friedman, 10 New York Times columns, and his New York Times/Discovery Channel documentary, “The Other Side of Outsourcing.” Thomas Friedman and Lou Dobbs were chosen as representative of the media elite due to their association with major news sources. Friedman is a columnist for the New York Times, a newspaper that previous research supports as being an agenda setter for other newspapers (Page & Shapiro, 1984, pp. 649-61; Hester & Gibson, 2003, p. 7). For this reason, Thomas Friedman may be considered a component of this same agenda-setting presence that the NY Times presents. Dobbs is an anchor for the Cable News Network, one of the most frequently watched cable news channels. His television show “Lou Dobbs Tonight” on which his “Exporting America” series runs, has an estimated household viewer ship of 472,000 households, with ad rates for his show among the highest for CNN. Because of his outspoken opinions on the issue and his high level of 5


6 viewership, Dobbs, like Friedman, can also be considered an agenda setter on the topic of outsourcing. Within the context of the primary object of outsourcing, second level agenda setting attributes such word choice, context, and rhetorical synthesis will be analyzed to determine intent of meaning and transmission of ideas. In this sense, the primary focus of the study could be considered a framing analysis integrating the examination of second level agenda setting attribution, as opposed to an agenda setting study that seeks to determine level of salience and transmission from the agenda setter to the public. As stated in chapter four of this thesis, theoretical concepts of agenda setting are not being tested here – rather, this particular aspect is a qualitative study of how the media implements its function as an agenda setter, with the precedents of framing and agenda setting research being applied as a tool of analysis. The difference between a frame and an attribute in the study is subtle yet distinct. A frame is a procedural construct moves the discussion along a certain direction or steers it in line with a certain agenda. An attribute on the other hand is a static unit that collectively provides the rhetorical data of the procedural framework of the discussion. Attributes may be words, phrases or individual sentences, while a frame would be the collective process by which an idea or is portrayed. A frame can be thought of as a procedure, while the attributes within a frame could be considered the individual building blocks of this frame. This concept of attributes as components of frames may depart slightly from the literature, in that agenda setting researchers may position the attribute more prominently than a frame. However, when considering levels of abstraction, it makes more sense to position the agenda setting object as the highest level of abstraction,


7 followed by any number of frames, followed by the individual attributes of the frame. The reason for this is simple. The agenda setting object is the primary issue of discussion, in this case being outsourcing. Beneath this parent object would be any number of sub-issues, which can be synonymously associated with frames. For example: the general idea relating to Lou Dobb’s argument that America is being “sold out” by those practicing outsourcing would be considered one sub-issue, or frame beneath the outsourcing parent object. Then, within this particular “selling out of America” frame, would be any number of individual attributes (words, phrases and sentences like “giving jobs away to cheap foreign labor markets” that, when taken collectively in their context, construct the higher level frame. It also must be noted that there is a many-to-many relationship between attributes and frames. Attributes may be shared globally among any number of frames. This does not insist that attributes are frames however, because an attribute is generally too small to be considered a frame outside of the context of a frame, though it is possible for some attributes to be succinct and concise enough in their own context to summarize a frame. As the study shows, the frames in the given object for a given media personality are a small number – no greater than 10 – though the attributes within these frames take on varied permutations over the extended time frame of the discussion. The data sampled for this study is by no means exhaustive of the greater public discourse, but is chosen for reasons relating to timing of the broadcast (e.g. an interview with Thom Friedman a day prior to the airing of “The Other Side of Outsourcing”), or due to the relevance of a topic (a September 2003 broadcast of “Lou Dobbs Tonight” titled “American Jobs Flooding Overseas”).


8 A potential issue with the data set concerns its cross-media nature. While the data set for Dobbs is strictly television, Friedman makes his presence in television, newspapers, radio and documentary film. This may imply that the immediacy of television and radio make for a comparable data set, while newspapers and documentary film provide a different, preconfigured context. While the Friedman documentary “The Other Side of Outsourcing” has differences and similarities with the “live” interviews shown in pre-recorded segments on Dobbs television series, they differ to the extent that Dobbs’ in-studio interviews are live, and conducted immediately after presenting the pre-recorded footage for discussion. Also, because they lack the immediacy of television interviews, Friedman’s column needs to be noted as providing an additional layer of forethought and control that is not present during televised or radio broadcast interviews, or even the interviews conducted for the documentary. Finally, the nature of a documentary such as “The Other Side of Outsourcing” may provide more flexibility and luxury in the editing room for selection of interview bites and footage than Dobbs’ program which is generally live. However, in spite of these differences that inarguably alter the effects of the media’s transmission mechanism, they are not expected to adversely affect the results of the analysis to any extent, as the analysis for this study is based on the makeup of the message, not the reactions of audiences to the messages. Still, it will be noted that print media and pre-recorded footage allows for an added luxury of creating a more intricate web of message construction.


CHAPTER 4 LITERATURE REVIEW In 1972, McCombs and Shaw established the foundation of agenda setting theory in their article, The Agenda-Setting Function of Mass Media. The summary concept of agenda-setting theory at this early stage was restricted to the concept that salience of an issue was determined by the extent to which the media selected and displayed the news (McCombs & Shaw, 1972). McCombs and Shaw’s theory was based in part on previous research done by Bernard Berelson, Kurt and Gladys Lang, Elihu Katz and Paul Lazarsfeld, Joseph Trenaman and Denis McQuail. Much of this previous research was considered inconclusive when considering changing attitudes, emphasizing instead on the aspect of learning, with “attention forced to certain issues” (McCombs & Shaw, 1972). In this sense, agenda-setting as a theory was intended to explain the perceived importance of an issue, excluding any attributes by which the media may or may not use to influence the public’s decision-making process concerning an issue. Salience was the effect of media exposure in the context of agenda setting at this point of time, and agenda setting theory would continue to revise through a number of evolutions over the next twenty years, presenting new dimensions to the original hypothesis. The most dramatic dimension includes the hypothesis that agenda setting theory, contrary to its original assertion, not only drew the public’s attention to certain issues, but also influenced the way in which they thought about the attributes of salient issues. 9


10 In 1976, Benton and Frazier introduced the concept of levels to agenda setting, with three levels: 1) general issue names, 2) sub-issues, including “problems, causes and proposed solutions” and 3) specific information about the sub issues (Benton & Frazier, 1976). Whereas previous agenda setting research had focused on the first level, Benton and Frazier sought out to look at what they called the second and third levels, which correlate to what would later be called attributes in the second level of agenda setting. Changes in the underlying theory of the media’s function as agenda setter are documented in Robert Entman’s 1989 article How the Media Affect what People Think: An Information Processing Approach. Based on a theory asserting that the schematics of cognition determine how an individual stores and links information, Entman states “the central assumption of the more recent agenda setting research has been that media do exert significant influence, but only in a narrow sphere (Entman, 1989). In 1993, McCombs analyzed the evolution of agenda-setting over the two decades that passed since the publication of their original research. McCombs and Shaw immediately began to revise their theory following its publication in 1972, when they began studying what they called the contingent conditions and psychological conditions affecting agenda setting (McCombs, 1993). Weaver, Graber, McCombs, and Eyal were credited as taking agenda-setting theory into its third phase with their examination of the 1976 election. Their research expanded the theory to two new domains – the agenda of candidate characteristics “reported by the media and learned by voters” and the “larger agenda of personal concerns on which all aspects of politics – issues, candidates, and so on – are but a single and usually minor, item (McCombs, 1993).


11 In the late 1970s, McCombs and Shaw introduced objects and attitudes to the first four phases of development of agenda setting theory (McCombs, 1993). The issue of salience remained a powerful characteristic of agenda setting theory, but now the theory included the sub-domain of attributes. Attributes of an object were not only emphasized by salience, but by the nature of their salience and the manner by which these attributes are presented. The public is informed on the issue, being the object, while the characteristics of the object fell into the attribute domain. Combining salience with attribute emphasis and framing, an object is brought to the public’s attention at the first level, and through the second-level, the media attempts to teach the public how to think about the issue. As McCombs says: Agenda setting is considerably more than the classical assertion that the news tells us what to think about. The news also tells us how to think about it. Both the selection of objects for attention and the selection of frames for thinking about these objects are powerful agenda-setting roles. Central to the news agenda and its daily set of objectsissues, personalities, events, etc. – are the perspectives that journalists and, subsequently members of the public employ to think about each object. (McCombs, 1993) In 1996, McCombs, Esteban Lopez-Escobar, and Juan Pablo Llamas conducted a second-level agenda setting study of the Spanish general election, to which they announced: “We advance the central proposition of agenda-setting theory – that elements prominent in the mass media’s picture of the world influence the salience of those elements in the audience’s picture – through the explication of a second level of agenda setting: attribute agenda setting” (McCombs, Lopez-Escobar & Llamas, 2000). The study, which focused on candidate images during the election, examined what McCombs et al. described as “two attribute dimensions – substantive and affective descriptors.” Candidate images were determined through a content analysis of newspapers, television news, and televised advertisements. These image descriptors were then compared to voter


12 responses to an open-ended question that asked how the respondent would describe a particular candidate. The findings showed that there was “a very strong relationship between what the media conveyed about each of the candidates and what the public deemed worthy of saying about them in response to the survey question” (McCombs, Lopez-Escobar, & Llamas, 2000). Two additional sets of relationships were identified in addition to those originally hypothesized, including the influence of other media in the agenda setting process (which they called inter-media agenda setting) and the influence of “these other media directly on the public agenda” (McCombs, Lopez-Escobar, & Llamas, 2000). As Ghanem states, the emphasis on second level attributes “does not negate the basic agenda-setting hypothesis, but rather builds on what already exists (Ghanem, 1997). First level agenda setting is concerned with the transfer of object salience from the media to the public, where an object is generally the central issue of a media message. The second level is then described by Ghanem as involving two specific hypotheses. The first is the way in which attributes are portrayed or emphasized in the news to affect the way the public thinks about an issue, and the second is the way attribute emphasis is used to affect the salience of the object (Ghanem, 1997). A generally accepted way of explaining how the media affects public interpretation of objects through its second level attributes is through framing. Interpretations on framing have varied among researchers like Nelson, Oxley, and Clawson; Iyengar and Simon; Entman, Hacket , Gitlin, Goffman, Tankard, Hendrickson, Silberman, Bliss, Mendelson and others, but they all share the commonality that frames are constructed, intentionally or unintentionally, to portray messages with a certain angle


13 and to communicate the meaning and importance of this angle to the audience (Ghanem, 1997). McCombs et al. (2000), Wanta, Golan, and Lee (2004), Ghanem (1997), and Kiousis et al. (1999) have taken framing theory and applied it to second level agenda setting attributes. For Iyengar and Simon, the difference is that the effect of first level agenda setting is rooted in salience of the issue, while the effects of second level agenda setting is the framing effect of attribute portrayal (Iyengar & Simon, 1993). In their study of public response to media portrayals of foreign nations, Wanta, Golan, and Lee (2004) explored their hypothesis that negative second-level agenda setting attributes in negative media coverage would cause the public to link these negative attributes to the nation as a whole. Similarly, Kiousis, Bantimaroudis, and Ban’s study of media portrayals of candidates provided evidence that individual perceptions of candidate personality and qualification traits corresponded to the second level agenda setting attributes portrayed in media coverage of candidates (Wanta, Golan, & Lee, 2004). Given its growing application and attention in the international sociopolitical sphere, business process outsourcing (BPO) can be viewed as a prototypal study of these eroding effects, not to mention a wide array of short and long term cultural effects. Though academic literature on BPO is lacking at the time of this writing, generalized theoretical models on globalization and transnational business have been developed in the fields of communications, sociology, business, political science, and information sciences. Examining and re-contextualizing these generalized models can shed some insight into BPO as a process of culture within the greater context of globalization.


14 The pragmatic motivator behind the BPO trend is economic in origin, driven by the necessity for multi-national corporations to remain competitive on a global scale. Globalization has not just created a global market for products; it has also created a global labor market where labor pools are no longer confined to local life-worlds but have expanded into a multinational and multicultural context (Schuerkens, 2003). It is argued that international business as we know it today is virtually unconstrained. Private global networks enable firms to “circumvent government disincentives whether embodied as taxes, rules, interest payments or capital restrictions” (Sussman, 2002). In turn, transnational BPO models have evolved with recent developments in information and communications technology, or ICT (Sassen, 2002). ICT’s contribution to the transnational business community, as well as the political and economic liberalization of nations like India (Desai, 1999), has enabled the emergence of new competitors into the global services market. ICT facilitates such developments in globalization, providing a method and means for bridging communications between disparate cultures and geographies through the establishment of an infrastructure; albeit virtual, it provides a sphere of existence that provides a common ground for social interaction. Though methods and tools available for participating in this evolving sphere of interaction have their limitations compared to rudimentary interpersonal communication (Korac-Kakabadse & Kouzmin, 1997; Chidambaram & Jones, 1993), they establish a working stage on which global and multicultural interaction may occur, even in its primordial capacity. The process of technology and economics has created a new sociological paradigm in which national boundaries are blurred as disparate cultures are brought


15 together through the interplay of identities within the sphere of international business and politics (Meyer, 2002). Still, surrounding these organizational and technical elements is a more tenuous and pervasive human element, whose derivative models an organic paradigm to which Malnight attributes the convergence of global industry and the opportunities and challenges presented (Malnight, 1995). As nations converge into the international society, BPO presents an effect on localized characteristics of nationality and culture that cannot be ignored. Langman postulates that the process of globalization creates two effects simultaneously: one that brings cultures together and another that differentiates between them. The interplay of these two effects creates a dialectic that compels change and adaptation through conflict and disparity (Langman, 2003). Stripping the flavor of homogeneity from Langman’s theory, Smelser argues that members of global cultures retain their sense of identity by becoming “local, national and global in their outlook,” taking it further to say that the world’s social structures have developed a three-tiered manifestation of identity, where the identity used is enacted according to the context on which the actor is presented (Smelser, 2003). However, Nederveen Pieterse argues that disparity functions as a precursor of “recognition,” where individuals converge first through the acknowledgement of differences; following recognition and the acknowledgement of differences, individuals would then adapt and modify these patterns of recognition into their own perceptions of identity, leading to a hybrid cultural identity (Nederveen Pieterse, 2001). Arguing against polarized philosophies, moderate theorists postulate that the cultural effects of internationalization and modernization may not be completely all-consuming. Considering that intermingling of culture in an international society may


16 have a less direct effect on the underlying makeup of cultural identity, what is defined as a “process of culture” would tend to smudge the boundaries isolating disparate spheres of locality, rather than annihilate them altogether (Gilroy, 2001). These spatial definitions of cultural boundaries would not be limited to the fringes of culture, but would span across various subtexts of society. In turn, social structures become “enacted, reproduced, and ultimately transformed by social actors, rooted in the social structure, yet freely engaging in connective social practices, with unpredictable outcomes” (Castells, 2000). Following this thought, Schuerkens’ concept of the universalizing process uproots itself by a dialogue of modernization, globalization, and cultural authenticization (Schuerkens, 2003) in which individual contexts of identity are retained, reshaped, and broadened to a level of new understanding. Multinational corporations tend to view multiculturalism in terms of a dynamic of cultural change (Korac-Kakabadse & Kouzmin, 1994). From this perspective, multiculturalism is a Sword of Damocles; it is considered a management issue that must be overcome through streamlined work practices, attitudes, and structured modes of communication. The philosophy is not entirely dictatorial, as the shift from a homogeneous to heterogeneous and then back into a homogenized, yet multi-ethnic, work culture requires efforts in perception and reinvention of both self and other (Berman, 1982; Foucault, 1986). In this context, multicultural implementation in business is often approached through methods that are “rooted in social engineering,” characterized by an “interventionist and managerialist discipline” (Nederveen Pieterse, 2000). This approach in turn becomes a method of determinism involving control and reconstruction (Nederveen Pieterse, 2000); by instructing the “other” in the ways and behaviors of the


17 dominant sociological paradigm in a sub-context of modernization and future thinking, a perceived listening balance is maintained to the idiosyncrasies of the other. To dispel any undertones of cultural imperialism that are often associated with globalization, metaphorical jargon such as “diversity,” “empowerment,” “participatory management,” (Nederveen Pieterse, 2000) in addition to capitalistic ideologies of opportunity enhanced by financial incentives are frequently used to create a bond of trust between actors in the developing multinational organization. These constructions of discourse are of no small importance given the natural tendency for suspicion and resistance that often characterizes sociopolitical spheres that are in flux (Nederveen Pieterse, 2000). Setting aside the cultural issues that arise in development, numerous logistical hurdles add to the difficulty in the setting of any organization that is undergoing change driven by economic and technological factors. Since employee acceptance of changing technology, even at a local level, is often met with great resistance due to the pace and complexity of technical and organizational change, the road ahead is predictably torturous. Add technological and logistical variants to the wider array of cultural, political, and communication hurdles that characterize globalization, and the situation becomes only more complicated (Veiga, Floyd, & Dechant, 2001). The premise that culture determines individual behavior in ways that can hasten or retard the implementation of change has been discussed widely in the literature (Veiga, Floyd, & Dechant, 2001). Resistance against globalization takes r oot in a sort of political and economic anxiety, characterized by fear of change with traditional racist undertones. The backlash against globalization couples with criticism against modernism and postmodernism, which becomes intertwined with pseudo-Marxist ideologies of


18 protectionism. In this sense, the discussion becomes political: the push for multiculturalism and diversity is perceived as a capitalist ploy to saturate labor markets and pressurize wages. This emerging conception of class struggle is viewed as more encompassing than prior history suggests, as proletarian occupations are no longer the sole victims of capitalist expansionism: educated, middle class professionals are now exposed to the same sense of insecurity that is common among blue collar workers. Regardless, this trend began two decades before international outsourcing was imagined with the explosion in mergers and acquisitions; only now, the scale appears more widespread and infectious, directly involves foreign labor, and forces a new kind of interaction across borders and cultures that is interpreted as usurping the prosperity of the American middle class. Globalization now meets opposition at two differing poles, with a new acceptance emerging at a third. The first pole of resistance can be characterized as that of developing nations into which free market expansionism has penetrated. This would include a great number of nations located in the geographic south, where development is often perceived as the “new religion of the West” (Rist, 1990). The second pole of resistance would be domestic, caused by displaced American blue and white collar workers whose jobs, and potentially their livelihood as it is feared, have been eliminated and replaced by cheaper, foreign labor. The third pole of acceptance surprisingly emerges from regions where different expansionist ideologies of the past, like British colonialism, once generated an overwhelming popular spirit of dissatisfaction against foreign agents (Desai, 1999). This third pole of acceptance is characterized by the rising of Asia as a whole, though one nation of particular importance is India. Over the past 15 years, India has


19 gone through many remarkable changes in its evolution from a post-colonial socialist state to a leading competitor in the global marketplace. The reason for this can be explained by recent history. In 1991, the Indian government, facing bankruptcy, had no alternative but to meet the demands of the International Monetary Fund’s structural adjustment program (Desai, 1999). A result of the IMF’s program was the elimination of the Indian government’s license-permit regime first imposed by Indira Ghandi during “the Emergency” of 1975, and a loosening of government policy that restricted international trade. The license-permit regime which followed the socialist policies of the post-colonial government, served the effect of maintaining the socialist concepts of planned economy; it also supported an isolationist stance with respect to international trade (Desai, 1999). Following the breakdown of post-colonial isolationist regulations, India underwent a number of political and social changes. Power shifted from the socialist Congress government to the Hindu Nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) which ran on a protectionist platform (Desai, 1999). Regardless of the protectionist leanings of the BJP, the Indian economy continued to grow and accept international business into its affairs. An important characteristic to note about the outsourcing boom in India is how it emerged from the protectionist political environment of the Congress (I) party. To understand how outsourcing has developed into the international sphere, it is essential to note the influence of international organizations like the World Trade Organization, the IMF, as well as the emergence of the Internet and other telecommunications technologies that enable businesses to operate jointly on opposite sides of the planet.


20 As a component of the globalization milieu, international outsourcing presents a curious example of social transformation in the arena of global and local actors. This emerging paradigm has brought new opportunities, not just to transnational corporations, but to individuals of developing societies by allowing for education, job opportunities, and upward mobility (Chan & MacIntyre, 2002) in nations like India and China which had been constrained by self-imposed isolationist policies (Desai, 1999). Understanding these different factors of influence will bring to light contradictions in the reaction of American politics and media, and the consequent reactions and agendas of the Indian media.


CHAPTER 5 PRELIMINARY ANALYSIS For the pilot analysis, two data sets were examined. The first is a November 2003 transcript from CNN commentator Lou Dobbs “Exporting America” series, and the second is a National Public Radio interview with NY Times foreign affairs columnist Thomas Friedman on the show “Fresh Air.” These two data samples were chosen for the preliminary analysis because the content of these two data sets were representative of the differing viewpoints of Dobbs and Friedman, and were expected to demonstrate distinct examples of framing and the use of second level agenda setting attributes. Analysis of permutations of attributes were saved until the comprehensive analysis. Lou Dobbs Tonight, CNN “Exporting America” Since 2003, Dobbs has been running a series titled “Exporting America” on his weeknight cable television show “Lou Dobbs Tonight.” The series has attacked outsourcing on what Dobb’s generically frames the “selling out of America.” As the title announces, the “Exporting America” series is consistently negative in its portrayal of outsourcing, with a running tally on the list of American companies who are sending jobs overseas. The outsourcing issue, by its own volition, has led to several public protests by American workers, and early in 2004, Congress considered taking measures towards limiting its progress. United States President George Bush likewise made several public 21


22 statements in early 2004 against outsourcing, stating that he would do everything possible to protect American jobs from being siphoned overseas. Based on the heavy amount of attention Dobbs has devoted his television show to outsourcing, it would seem he views himself as a mouthpiece for the victimized American middle class worker. On November 13, 2003, “Lou Dobb’s Tonight” ran two segments in its “Exporting America” series. The first segment addressed U.S. companies “bucking the offshoring trend.” The content of this segment included interviews with four CEOs of U.S. manufacturing and technology services companies who had made the decision to stick with U.S. workers. Dobbs praised the executives of these companies who asserted that quality, reliability and easier management were the positive elements of maintaining their grass-roots operating model. At the end of the segment Dobbs conducted an interview between Dobbs and Narayan Keshavan, Executive Director of the Indian Forum for Political Education. The interview, which took on the overtones of a debate between Dobbs and Keshavan, presented the opposing viewpoint in the pretext of balanced journalism. The two outsourcing segments ran that evening along with two segments related to the Iraq War – “Operation Iron Hammer” and “Neo-Conservatism will rise or fall based on success in Iraq” – and one segment on illegal aliens, part of another series titled “Broken Borders.” The prelude into the first outsourcing segment began with the leading sound bite: Exporting America tonight – fighting back against the massive outflow of jobs to cheap labor markets overseas. Casey Wian, with our special report on the companies trying to keep Americans on the job.


23 The second level attributes used in reference to the primary agenda-setting issue of outsourcing possess the expected negative overtones. For example: the adverbs “massive” and “tremendous” qualify the attributes of the quantity of exported jobs, whose permutations often utilize verbs like “migration” for effect; “devastated” is used to describe attributes relating to the effect of outsourcing on American manufacturing and technology industries; “risk” in reference to the attributes of operational logistics; “cheap” referring to attributes of cost and quality of overseas services; “counterintuitive” describing attributes of outsourcing ideology; “giving away” and “clever” insinuating a nonchalant attitude of executive decision-making; and lastly, “fools” and “idiots” as a attribute describing directors who pay “egregiously high salaries” to CEOs who “export U.S. jobs.” Dobbs begins the Keshavan interview with a statement that starts as an assertion and ends with a question: It is counterintuitive to say that outsourcing U.S. jobs overseas, whether to India, to the Phillipines, Ireland, that’s somehow good for the U.S. How is that? The “counterintuitive” nature of this attribute is reinforced with the cynical overtones emulated by the phrase bytes of “somehow good” and the question “How is that?” This immediately puts Keshavan in the position where he must justify what Dobbs frames as a fallacy. Keshavan responds to the question by appealing to one of the fundamental constructs of capitalism in the global market place: “wealth creation” and competition in the labor market become the positive attributes of Keshevan’s framing of the issue, where the best man – or woman – for the job gets the job. The attributes of Keshevan’s frame position the issue in a light where the world economy is benefited by


24 global capitalism, free market determinism, and the open trade of products, services, and labor. Though the interview takes on a combative tone, Dobbs displays a show of civility by emphasizing: “I love India. I love the Indian people. It’s a remarkable culture and society,” with “wonderful entrepreneurs” and “wonderful mercantilists.” He likely does this to curtail any overtones of racism that would undercut his argument. By emphasizing that the business practice is “idiotic on any basis,” he turns the blame from India to the greed of American executives and directors who are the instigators of a trend that he believes will eradicate the American middle class. Dobbs reinforces this message by admitting that Indian’s have played a significant part in the development of the American technology sector, but maintains the caveat that those who did were American citizens, maintaining his position that the argument against outsourcing is not an issue of race, but of national interest. Whether or not the device placates Keshavan is questionable, but it works to the effect that he returns the gesture by expressing sympathy towards American workers who have lost jobs. Nonetheless, Keshavan argues that more jobs would be lost and more American companies would go under if not for outsourcing. Dobbs counters this statement by using four examples to question the credibility of this statement – IBM, General Electric, McKenzie, and Dell computer, monstrous corporations which are unlikely to go under anytime in the near future.


25 Thomas Friedman, New York Times “The Great Indian Dream” Thomas Friedman’s viewpoints on outsourcing can be best described as the polar opposite to Lou Dobbs. Currently the foreign affairs columnist for the New York Times, Friedman has covered international affairs, trade, and economics since 1981 and won three Pulitzer Prizes. His perspectives are decidedly in line with the upper echelon of the business elite. He maintains a generally positive outlook on outsourcing, international trade and global economic convergence. On June 3, 2004, NPR’s “Fresh Air,” hosted by Terry Gross, broadcast an interview with Thomas Friedman on the outsourcing issue. Examining the language in the interview provides a different tone than the combative tone of the Dobbs interview with Narayan Keshavan. Still, Terry Gross does bring up the question: “How can this be good for America?” Friedman responds plainly, outlining a number of facts relating to outsourcing and addressing the concerns. He discusses the scope of what is currently being outsourced – call service centers, accounting, radiology, pharmaceutical research and development, and brokerage research, among others – and takes into account the fact that Americans are losing jobs in the process. Friedman also tries to emphasize that there is more to outsourcing than just cutting costs, with several aspects leading to its development. Part of this is the advancement in education in countries like India, where there is a heavy emphasis in the hard sciences. Also, when referring to costs, Friedman prefers to call it the “low wage” alternative – a neutral term in comparison to Dobbs use of the phrase “cheap labor” – insisting on the economic benefits derived from extending production and consumption into foreign markets.


26 Friedman’s framing of the issue attributes is more subtle and complex than Dobbs on many levels. His message construction and word choice at the second level is multifarious due to his extensive knowledge of the subject matter. Though the language he uses is simple, Friedman’s framework of ideas can be complicated, especially when he departs from his concrete examples and anecdotes into a discussion on the nature of globalization and outsourcing. For this reason, Friedman’s second level attributes are developed in terms of ideas or concepts, rather than singular word choices or the smaller phrase constructions that characterize Dobbs attribute selection. In the “Fresh Air” interview, Friedman positions the issue into four specific frames qualified by various permutations of attributes within the frames: 1) A brief introduction explaining the services and industries that are being affected by outsourcing; 2) A discussion of India and why it has become a center for outsourcing; 3) What globalization and outsourcing means to America, and what America needs to do to make itself more competitive in the emerging global economy; and 4) Why Thomas Friedman is interested in globalization and outsourcing. Each of these frames is presented in a manner that will best communicate Friedman’s agenda, with painstaking effort invested in constructing the frames through the use of carefully selected attributes. The first frame is presented rather quickly, as if Friedman is telling America to wake up and realize what is going on around them. It is not a wake up call of a reactionary, or protectionist nature as would be the case when Dobbs makes similar statements. Rather, it is a list of facts, that when put together, emphasize the rapid degree of change that is taken place in the world. The second frame discusses the rise of India in the outsourcing sector. It is a positive portrayal, explaining


27 how India has brought itself from being a third world, socialist nation to a thriving center for technology and a strong competitor in global markets. Friedman explains that this rise to success is attributed to India’s focus on education in the hard sciences, and its willingness to understand and adapt to Western culture when the demands of globalization call for it. Attributes like “Darwinian,” “competitive,” “educated” and “young” are used to construct the frames with an emphasis on how Indian culture has fostered this development. The third frame addresses outsourcing and what it means for Americans. This immediately follows the inevitable question posed by Terry Gross, in which she asks how Americans who are losing jobs can be enthusiastic about outsourcing. Friedman responds by stating: Well, you know, it's a really complicated issue, and you and I over the years have talked about globalization. And my mantra has always been if you think it's all bad or you think it's all good, you don't understand it, and outsourcing I would put in that very same category. Friedman’s thinking on this particular attribute of the issue – which holds a direct link to the primary agenda setting issue – is rooted in the underlying principles of capitalism. Outsourcing considered a natural development of the international economy, where supply and demand determines what is produced and who it is consumed by – where long term capital investment will compensate for a short term loss. Part of this is the concept that competition in all markets, including the labor market, is the lifeline of the economy. Friedman’s framing of this attribute states that outsourcing can’t be stopped it, it shouldn’t be stopped, and Americans better learn how to adapt and function with the changing global marketplace. He emphasizes that the solution for America is education, not protectionism, and that the government should use tax dollars to “cushion” those who


28 lose their jobs because of outsourcing through wage insurance and education to acquire them new skills for higher paying jobs. The fourth frame addresses Friedman’s interest in globalization, and can be best summarized with a direct quote: ... the one thing I know as a journalist is my job is not to sit back and, you know, fan the flames of either jingoism or Know-Nothingism; it's to really try to delve into this phenomena. That's why we went all the way to India, did that; that's why I want to write a book on it, because if I understand it, maybe I can contribute something to a sensible debate about it because the technology is here, and it is flattening the world.


CHAPTER 6 PRELIMINARY CONCLUSIONS Both Dobbs and Friedman’s framing of the outsourcing issue present strengths and weaknesses in their argument. Aside from their opposing viewpoints, the difference between their agenda setting methods can best be described terms of form, delivery and tone. Dobb’s tone is predominantly jingoistic, condemning, and appeals directly to the emotions,. Also, Dobbs appears to represent himself as a crusader and protector of the average middle class American whose livelihood is threatened by corporate greed and unscrupulous, foreign labor. Friedman’s agenda on outsourcing, on the other hand, is multi-layered. Friedman also appeals to emotion, but rather than appealing to the outrage and contempt expressed by Dobbs, he is framing the issue to appeal to the spirit of capitalism and entrepreneurship. His philosophy on globalization generally emphasizes a need for understanding and embracing, in spite of the obvious difficult short term moments in the progression towards its realization. Friedman’s attributes reflect this philosophy in the manner by which they are framed and presented, while his language remains generally inobtrusive. Perhaps the greatest difference between Friedman and Dobbs methods in persuasion is that Friedman relies on simple language to explain strategic and theoretical ideas, while Dobb’s relies on language that aims for an immediate emotional response. The findings within this preliminary conclusion implicate that within the greater body of the larger data set, there is evidence of agenda setting and framing for the purposes of persuasion by both Friedman and Dobbs. The in-depth analysis provides 29


30 further study into the makeup and construction of these frames and attributes, by taking a more comprehensive assessment on the quantity and qualitative aspects of the multitude of frames and supporting attributes in the discourse led by the two agenda setting media figures. By examining the greater body of work of both journalists, the complex nature of the construction of these frames and attributes can be better understood to provide insights into how the media, as an agenda setter, attempts to influence public cognition on issues.


CHAPTER 7 IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS Lou Dobbs Conclusions made during the preliminary analysis on Friedman and Dobbs framing and use of second level agenda setting attributes are supported by the analysis of the larger data set. However, layers of complexity are introduced deeper into the debate as it progressed towards the 2004 Presidential election. Though many of the attributes identified in the preliminary analysis pervade through the evolution of the discussion, these attributes assume various permutations, as new information, voices, and opinions are introduced through interviews, debates, and sound bites. For this reason, the major focus of the summary analysis will be identify and label the core attributes, analyze permutations and meaning, and take note of frequency within the primary agenda setting object, being outsourcing. Eight core frames were identified in the larger data sampling of Lou Dobbs’ discourse between September 2003 and December 2004. These eight frames are summarily labeled, in the words of the author, as: 1) “Exporting America” 2) “Outsourcing as a threat to national security” 3) “Don’t believe the hype” 4) “Blame Benedict Arnold CEOs” 5) “Blame the U.S. Government” 6) “Beware the outsourcing backlash!” 7) “Think your job is safe? Think again” and 8) “It’s the economy, stupid.” The first frame, labeled “Exporting America,” is taken from the name of the series. This is the most prominent theme of Dobbs’ discourse on the issue, and every segment broadcast has its tone set by this frame: before any facts or opinions are presented, the 31


32 title of the series sets the viewers expectation for what will be in the segment. Though permutations of attributes in the “Great American Giveaway” frame vary in rhetoric and direction, they all emphasize this idea that the backbone of the American economy – being working and middle class people – has been commoditized into a product that can be sold for a very cheap price – a price so low that it is being “given away.” The “Exporting America” frame qualifies American jobs lost from outsourcing with attributes like “lost,” “given away,” “disappeared,” “siphoned,” “hemorrhaged,” “fleeing,” and “churning.” Even taken out of context these words ooze with negativity. When put into context of outsourcing and displaced American jobs, the words provide multiple metaphorical meanings to the permutations of the “Great American Giveaway” frame: they make outsourcing look bad by implying a an irresponsibility on behalf of those who engage in the business practice, not to mention a fatalistic outlook on affected industries of the American economy. As stated in the preliminary analysis, Dobbs is aiming for the highest degree of emotional impact, and does his best when he takes the debate out of his studio, away from the economists and business strategists, and directly to disaffected workers. When put on film and played during a segment, the anger and frustration of endangered and laid-off blue collar and white collar workers can be seen and heard, whereas in the studio, the argument is largely based on rhetoric and theoretical hyperbole. One notable and heated example of this is a segment from the “Exporting America” series titled ,000 workers protest outsourcing of U.S. jobs.” The segment is partly pre-recorded coverage of an AFL-CIO strike with SBC communications in Connecticut, followed by an interview between Dobbs and the President of the Connecticut AFL-CIO,


33 John Olsen. Striking workers are shown on tape shouting “SBC, shame on you! SBC, shame on you!” while individual workers are interviewed making statements like: “We work here, this is where the jobs should be.” Words like “home,” “hometown,” or “community” are emphasized in the segment, taking the debate to a more granular level that is intended to resonate through Everytown, USA. Dobbs follows up the pre-recorded video with his interview with Olsen, over which they discuss the impact of outsourcing on SBC telecommunications workers. During the interview, Olsen states that his son was recently laid off. This provides Olsen with an added level of credibility when talking about the issue, establishing a direct correlation between cause and effect of outsourcing. By using a source who exemplifies such a degree of credibility, Dobbs adds a higher level of credibility to his own position on the issue, as well as providing a direct emotional feed to the attributes supporting this particular frame. Dobbs also solicits viewer mail on his series, facilitating his agenda through the selection and presentation of sources that are taken directly from the voice of the American public. These viewer comments are typically appended to an emotionally charged “Exporting America” segment, and express outrage, anger or disappointment in the outsourcing trend. Two examples from the ,000 workers protest outsourcing” segment are Faith Cagne of South Yarmouth, Massachusetts and “Bob” from Dallas, TX. Faith writes: "Bravo, bravo to the SBC employees who are walking off the job because of outsourcing. At last, a light at the end of a very dark tunnel," while Bob writes: "Lou, all of us who have downsized, processed, reengineered, and outsourced should make a sign and go join the SBC CWA strikers." Both are intended to be a snapshot of public opinion


34 – providing the little man/big picture perspective that reinforces the sense of injustice and outraged burdened upon the average, everyday American affected by outsourcing. The second frame “Outsourcing is a threat to America” takes the precedents and attributes of the previous frame to the next level, by asserting that outsourcing not only threatens American job security, but poses a threat to U.S. national security. In a segment titled “Jobs on the Line,” Democratic Senator Hillary Clinton of New York states on behalf of 1,200 workers in Syracuse, New York whose jobs are to be moved offshore by Carrier to Singapore, Malaysia, and China that “manufacturing is not a luxury. It's not an old-fashioned economic activity. It truly is core to much of what we need to do to maintain a strong economy and, I would argue, a strong national defense.” In another segment titled “Battle to Stop Exportation of Call Center Jobs,” guest host Kitty Pilgrim states in interview with now retired Democratic Senator Earnest “Fritz” Hollings of South Carolina: “In your mind, we’re risking our national security by exporting so much of this production overseas.” Hollings responds by saying “Oh, there isn’t any question about it Akio Morita head of Sony said that a world power that loses its manufacturing capacity will cease to be a world power.” The title of the segment is interesting to note in that it addresses call center jobs, yet the focus of discussion is directed towards manufacturing jobs. This is common within the “Exporting America” series, in that it rarely distinguishes between types of jobs or industries, but prefers to lump everything together in the effort of widening the scope and perceived impact of the issue. Also within the context of national security is the issue concerning classified and private information being sent off to and processed in foreign locations. An “Exporting America” segment titled “Bermuda based Accenture wins department of Homeland


35 Security contract,” condemns the U.S. Government’s awarding of a $10 billion dollar Homeland Security contract to Accenture, a former spin-off of the Arthur Andersen accounting firm. Accenture, whose major center of operations is located in Chicago for all practical purposes, incorporated in Bermuda when it became a public firm in 2001 (the incorporation in Bermuda was done for the purpose of avoiding U.S. corporate taxes). In the “Bermuda Based Accenture” segment, the company states that it would staff the project only with tax-paying U.S. employees. However, the offshore status of their watershed Bermuda headquarters provides Dobbs with the material for attacking the government on its reckless behavior in entrusting a “foreign” company with work of a highly sensitive and critical nature. The third frame (“Don’t believe the hype”), is a summary statement of Dobbs’ assault on those who are vocal proponents of outsourcing. Though he never brings Thomas Friedman to the table, the target of Dobbs assailing are usually high level business strategists and economic consultants, whose theoretical position is derived from strategic management think tanks the likes of McKinsey Consulting. An interview between Dobbs and James Glassman, resident fellow of the American Enterprise Institute, typifies the “Don’t believe the Hype” frame. Following a segment on the President George Bush’s dodgy statement “condemning” outsourcing, Dobbs debates with Glassman over an article Glassman wrote in February 2004 for “Capitalism Magazine,” in which Glassman says: “What's gotten into Lou Dobbs? Once a sensible, if self-important and sycophantic, CNN anchor, he has suddenly become a table-thumping protectionist.” Glassman attacks Dobbs’ viewpoint by saying that outsourcing is fundamentally derived from international trade – a fundamental part of economic growth.


36 Also, as Glassman adds, jobs come and go, and he cites the huge reduction of agricultural jobs that followed innovations in farming technology. After several minutes of heated bickering things come to a head when Dobbs retorts back to Glassman’s objections over his continued use of the attribute “shipping jobs.” Glassman then asserts the strength of the American economy using such commonly accepted phrases as “robust” and “dynamic,” to which Dobbs responds: “You talk like a cult member. There's a mantra, you say market, you say largest and dynamic. And it simply removes the need for rationality.” The fourth frame (“Blame Benedict Arnold CEOs”) addresses the idea of corporate executives and boards of directors being responsible for selling out America for their own selfish interests. This attributes of this frame frequently connote – probably unintentionally – with Marxist overtones, in that they position the American working and middle classes (America’s two-tiered proletariat) against a modern day aristocracy made up of billionaires, CEOs, boards of directors, and whoever else possesses disproportionate numbers of shares in the capital pool. Citing back to the SBC strike, Dobbs captures Seth Rosen of CWA saying: “This is a company that is profitable. It made $8.5 billion. If it's doing so poorly, I don't know it gave its CEO a 93 percent increase in his wages. He's making nearly $20 million.” The outrageous salary of SBC’s CEO compared to the plight of the common SBC worker who is losing his comparatively low-paying job to even lower-paid foreigners adds to the sense of injustice and outrage that Dobbs intends to portray. Regardless of his crusade against outsourcing and support for unions and the American underclass in his “Exporting America” series, Dobbs’ is still a moderately


37 conservative journalist; considering his coverage to be pro-Marxist is a stretch. Nonetheless, there are some characteristics of the “Exporting America” series that carry back to Marx and Engels, especially considering the sound bites Dobbs uses in his footage that when framed together, attack the greed of corporate CEOs who would be happy to carve any company up into little bits to inflate their tumescent golden parachutes. As the debate on outsourcing made its way up to the tower of political discourse, the blame somehow shifts from the masters of big business, to U.S. trade policy, and the politicians who endorsed open policies like the North American Free Trade Agreement. With the fifth frame, “Blame the U.S. Government,” Dobbs squalls over “the domination of corporate America in our national life, our political life, to the extent that it has brought in both parties a gap for representation of the American worker?” In early 2004, the Bush Administration voiced concern about the impact of outsourcing, with Bush stating that the administration would take action "to make sure there are more jobs at home." However, following a likely silent backlash from corporate barons, Bush reneged on his initial statements, and conveniently shifted the focus for the position over to his economic adviser, Greg Mankiw. Still, the Bush Administration planned to go forward with some protectionist-style action to placate the unruly masses. In a segment called “American jobs flooding overseas,” CNN correspondent Lisa Sylvester says: “The Commerce Department is forming a team to track and investigate unfair trade practices. And President Bush is creating a new position, a manufacturing czar, who will work with business leaders to come up with a strategy for saving jobs.”


38 On the Democratic side of the issue, Presidential nominee John Kerry, who supported NAFTA in the 1990s, positioned himself against outsourcing to win support of middle class voters, as did Vice Presidential nominee Edwards, who was careful enough to mention that he never supported NAFTA. During the presidential debates, the term “outsourcing” became a sort of colloquial red herring that could be applied to anything including “outsourcing the war on terrorism.” Dobbs also provides viewer submitted attributes to accompany the blaming of the U.S. government for outsourcing, again to attain that same level of connectedness that Dobbs, as a broadcast journalist hiding out in his cushy studio, is lacking despite his earnestness in coming to the aid of the common man. In the ,000 workers” segment, Orlie Shaw of Marion Indiana writes: “We need to open the eyes of government. They were elected to work for the little people and not the corporations.” This is counterbalanced with statements from congressman, like Rep. Sherrod Brown of Ohio who argues that legislation must be created to “help business hold those jobs for Americans.” The Marxist flavor of the anti-outsourcing discourse is much stronger when taking another frame into consideration. “Beware the outsourcing backlash!” is a catch-all statement to cover insinuations that the American middle and working classes are getting so sick of all this downsizing and outsourcing that there will eventually be severe repercussions. Starting in early 2004, Dobbs’ framed the backlash in terms of the upcoming election, insisting that winning the Presidency will depend on the position one takes regarding the economy and jobs, with outsourcing and international trade policy as a subtext to all of this. Of course, this is a far cry from advocating violent upheaval of the


39 powers that be, as Marxism and Leninism would dictate, but it emphasizes the power of the masses and the threat they pose to the status quo, should they be disenfranchised. The seventh frame, “Think your job is safe? Think again” concerns the after effects of outsourcing on American job markets, regardless of job type or industry. When Dobbs introduces a segment on outsourcing, he will typically go through a laundry list of all the different types of jobs that are and can be sent overseas – everything from filing income taxes to examining x-rays. Any work that can be digitized can be sold to the overseas labor market, encompassing just any job that can be done in an office or behind a desk. One attribute supporting this frame is an entire segment devoted to the outsourcing of legal research. In the segment, titled “legal jobs being sent overseas” CNN correspondent Kitty Pilgrim states that: “first it was manual labor, then service jobs. Now its legal work being shipped overseas to cut costs.” A Harvard University professor is then quoted as saying “the more work that is taken away from them, either by being given to paralegals or sending it offshore to contract professionals in places like India, the less opportunity for young lawyers to be trained.” The segment is concluded with Pilgrim’s speculating “with this trend, who will be willing to invest time and tuition to earn a legal degree?” Where does this dislocated worker go? What can a tech worker with 15 or 25 years of experience in a certain field do when his job is eliminated and sent overseas? Proponents of outsourcing argue that education and training is essential to re-assimilating laid-off workers back into the work force, yet Dobbs counters the argument by presenting a number of cases where affected workers have ultimately been forced to take worse paying and less rewarding work. Within a segment titled “Does job retraining work,” a


40 pre-recorded segment records the plight of Lawrence Massachusetts, once possessing 9,000 jobs long gone from Lucent Technologies. Examples given are a customer service rep who once made $45 an hour to now taking $16.35 an hour at a similar job with another firm, a worker in labor relations who now is an office manager for a dentists office, to a former product manager now nightshift process manager at a fish producer. Dobbs certainly presents a grim forecast for the American white collar worker. This frame also addresses concern over a perceived loss of innovation in America, especially in technology. As lower level jobs in technology and other career oriented disciplines are sent away to foreign countries, outsourcing opponents express concern that fewer opportunities will be available for people who are trying to grow in these industries. In a segment titled “States consider limiting outsourcing,” Dobbs interviews David McCurdy, President of Electronic Industries Alliance, who says that “reliance on outsourcing to cheaper foreign labor markets will ultimately cost the United States its edge in an area critical to our future prosperity, both in technology and in innovation itself.” McCurdy’s quote challenges the idea of retraining and education as a solution by asserting that sending these jobs away reduces opportunities for developing these skills in innovation. Representative Sherrod Brown adds: “I remember during NAFTA in 1993 the debate that we were told over and over that, if you get more education to prepare for this, then we'll just ship out the low-skilled jobs, but there will be plenty of jobs for people as they get educated more. But we're seeing more and more that we're losing computer engineers. We're losing radiologists. We're losing all kinds of white-collar jobs, all kinds of jobs in addition to manufacturing jobs.” Alas, no longer is the middle class, college


41 educated worker guaranteed a job, so long as outsourcing proves itself a profitable venture. Finally, Dobbs argument leads up to the final frame: “it’s the economy stupid.” The statistical information Dobbs presents in his argument as attributes for this frame often relate to seemingly relevant but indirect figures, such as the $500 billion trade deficit, the 2.5 million workers who have lost their jobs since 2001, the 12 percent of Americans living below the poverty line, the continuing decline in the median income for the American household, the more than 350,000 American technology jobs outsourced to foreign countries, an ever-growing list of companies who practice outsourcing, and so on. Still, these attributes are loosely tied to outsourcing, and Dobbs never establishes a hard line between them in the course of the discussion. Dobbs never proves that $X million spent on outsourcing has led to a $X million of the $500 billion trade deficit, or that X number of jobs created in India for outsourcing led to the 350,000 lost American technology jobs. The tie between the two is usually by association, and though it seems obvious that if you take one job and move it somewhere else, that accounts directly for a job loss in America. That would seem to make sense, but without the evidence to back that up, it’s all speculative. Thomas Friedman As stated in the preliminary analysis, Thomas Friedman’s perspective on outsourcing takes the opposing viewpoint of Lou Dobbs, and brings the issue to a more strategic and analytical level that is a departure from the emotionally charged antics of Dobbs. To Friedman, outsourcing is one of many gems of globalization, and he believes outsourcing will boost the economies of lesser developed nations like India, lead to new innovations in business and technology, improve the living standards of even those


42 whose jobs are affected in the long run, and promote peace and stability throughout the world. Friedman has written a number of columns on outsourcing for the New York Times over the course of the past two years, but his opus on the subject is his documentary “The Other Side of Outsourcing.” This 45-minute documentary, which aired on cable in June 2004 as a joint New York Times-Discovery Channel production, literally takes the outsourcing issue to India by examining in-depth the effect outsourcing is having in Bangalore, one of India’s strongest technology centers. Friedman begins the documentary with a voice over narrative: In India today, one billion 50 million people, three and a half times the population of America are living in an area only one third the size of the United States. It’s an ancient civilization where many people’s way of life has remained relatively unchanged for generations. But in the 21 st century a transformation is taking place. With the growing demand for computerized services, millions of jobs and billions of dollars have arrived in India. The viewer already knows by the last sentence of this introduction what to expect. While Dobbs talks about millions of jobs and billions of dollars leaving America, Friedman switches the perspective to India, replacing “leaving America” with the attribute “arrived in India.” Now, outsourcing is portrayed as a positive – not a negative – thing that creates, rather than destroys. Friedman is not oblivious to the controversy surrounding outsourcing in America though, and over the next few sentences he is careful to acknowledge that “the movement of jobs to India has sparked a heated controversy its negative impact on some American workers has become one of the hottest political issues of our time But there’s another story here beneath the surface.” Again, the attributes are carefully selected and much tamer than Dobbs, who would prefer “exportation,” “shipping” or “giving up”


43 to Friedman’s sanitary choice of the word “movement.” Still, as Friedman addresses the “negative” aspect of the impact on American jobs, he athletically curtails this negativity with the parenthetical statement: “But there’s another story here beneath the surface.” In spite of the bad, he intends to show that, yes, there is a light at the end of the outsourcing tunnel, even though in his columns, America has some difficult changes to make in the future if it wants to maintain its lead. Friedman’s portrayal of the success in India in his documentary is as pro-outsourcing as his NY Times columns: “Today, Bangalore provides state of the art software, cutting edge research, and backroom business support to many of the world’s biggest companies. It’s a multi-billion dollar business that’s giving undreamed of opportunities to millions of Indians,” he says in “The Other Side of Outsourcing.” These statements contrast strongly with Dobbs opinions on the Indian tech industry. In his interview with Naraya Keshavan in the “America’s Middle Class Under Seige” segment, Dobbs may flout a sycophantic appreciation for India, but outside of this instance, he doesn’t argue the qualifications of Indian workers over American workers, asserting the only reason they are getting these jobs is because of their low wage. Friedman, on the other hand, elevates the status of Indian tech workers in Bangalore with an ebullient spin, placing them in the upper echelon of the tech sector. Where Dobbs prefers to host American economic strategists, American politicians, union representatives, and disaffected workers into his studio or in his pre-recorded video footage, Friedman doesn’t. When Friedman has interacted with Americans on the subject, he has done so on American television or radio programs such as CNN, NPR, the Daily Show, MSNBC, the Today Show and so on. The tone of these shows varies from the


44 benignly suspicious (Charlie Rose) to outwardly combative (Hardball with Chris Matthews), but in every case it is Friedman as the interviewee doing his duty of defending a controversial viewpoint using his particular angle and attributes. As a foreign affairs columnist, Friedman prefers to focus on the economic and cultural effects in countries outside the United States, hence the focus on the “other” as exhibited in “the Other Side of Outsourcing.” Though Friedman’s focus on Indian culture in his documentary is an interesting, insightful and important perspective for supporting the ideology of outsourcing, there lies a weakness in his often pollyannaish viewpoint; one begins to wonder if he knows or has ever talked to someone who has lost their job to outsourcing, as he never includes the everyday American worker in his coverage. Though he is frank about the situation for American workers in his columns, he still speaks in terms of abstractions, and doesn’t like to get his hands dirty in the business of talking to ordinary Americans. Instead, he prefers to get his hands dirty talking to ordinary people in foreign countries, and these become attributes of his pro-outsourcing frames. To understand where Friedman is going with the outsourcing issue, one needs to know that his columns on outsourcing is more about covering a phenomenon than covering an issue. As he addresses outsourcing from a wide range of theoretical and practical angles, he often neglects the noise and commotion ruffling within the United States, but rather looks at the bigger picture on a global scale. While largely ignoring the domestic implications, Friedman pushes forward with optimism in support of outsourcing, with faith that all the great things happening in India will turn into great


45 things for everyone. As he frequently repeats in his articles, interviews, and his documentary: “What goes around comes around.” The first stop on Friedman’s tour of Bangalore is not surprisingly a call center aptly named /7.” The footage rolls through the halls of the call center where ,800 young workers handling tens of thousands of customer service calls around the world,” work on a shop floor “the size of 1 football fields.” The youthfulness of the outsourcing industry is a frequent attribute used by Friedman when depicting the prosperity of this new generation of tech workers, happily called “Zippies” by the Indian press. Friedman looks intently into the future, and when he speaks it seems that in his eyes the future is the youth of India. Friedman asks the marketing director of 24/7, Anney Unnikrishnan, “How do you see this job changing their lives as young Indians?” A pleasant exchange over the enthusiasm of the tech workers ensues, with repeated references to attributes such as their youth, “disposable income,” “disposable time,” and the “hotness” of their jobs. Friedman’s jubilance over their idyllic bounty is not coincidental. There is a specific subtext to Friedman’s probing into this youthful attribute, which ties back to his concerns with terrorism. In a later segment of “the Other Side of Outsourcing” he interviews Wipro Chairman, Aziz Premji, a Muslim and one of the most successful businessmen in India. Before the interview begins, Friedman narrates: I’ve always found it interesting that though India has the second largest Muslim population in the world, numbering 150 million, there were no Indian Muslims involved in the 9/11 attacks, but there are plenty of Muslims working at places like Infosys and Wipro. In fact, the chairman of Wipro, Azim Premji, is an Indian Muslim. He believes that extended opportunities to Muslims in Arab countries not only makes the world safer, but makes good business sense.


46 This may answer one question asked by Charlie Rose during an interview with Friedman in June 2004, a day before the airing of “The Other Side of Outsourcing.” During the interview, Rose asks Friedman: “Why are you doing these documentaries? I mean clearly, there are a lot of things for you to do.” Friedman fumbles around the question with a lot of nonsense about having fun and telling stories, but if one looks closely at what is said in “the Other Side of Outsourcing” and counter-balances it with another documentary released by Friedman 16 months earlier titled “Searching for the roots of 9/11,” it’s easy enough to answer the question for Friedman. The earlier documentary, titled “Searching for the roots of 9/11,” was another Discovery Channel/New York Times production that examined the animosity towards the United States that is popular in the Middle Eastern Arabic-Muslim perspective. Like “the Other Side of Outsourcing,” “Searching for the roots of 9/11” takes Friedman to a place outside of the United States, where he interviews people in the attempt to qualify the nature of foreign attitudes around an American issue that is arguably related to globalization. Likewise, the findings from “Searching for the roots of 9/11” resurface in a column Friedman wrote called “30 Little Turtles,” which is based on a segment in his documentary where he attends an “accent orientation” class. In the Little Turtles” piece, Friedman writes: Indeed, listening to these Indian young people, I had a dj vu. Five months ago, I was in Ramallah, on the West Bank, talking to three young Palestinian men, also in their 20's, one of whom was studying engineering. Their hero was Yasir Arafat. They talked about having no hope, no jobs and no dignity, and they each nodded when one of them said they were all "suicide bombers in waiting. Friedman’s interest in outsourcing could be derived from the same core attribute, at least to some extent. Based on these statements and his enthusiasm, it appears as though


47 he is framing the outsourcing issue as part of a greater means of balancing out the distribution of wealth and improving the standard of living in other parts of the world, so that the desperation experienced by unprivileged members of what Friedman would consider a global society, are not alienated and therefore not prone to committing acts of violence such as terrorism. This paragraph, taken from a NY Times column written by Friedman in March 2004, titled “Origin of Species” perhaps summarizes his position most eloquently: India, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan each spontaneously generated centers for their young people's energies. In India they're called "call centers," where young men and women get their first jobs and technical skills servicing the global economy and calling the world. In Pakistan, Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia they're called "madrassas," where young men, and only young men, spend their days memorizing the Koran and calling only God. Ironically, U.S. consumers help to finance both. We finance the madrassas by driving big cars and sending the money to Saudi Arabia, which uses it to build the madrassas that are central to Al Qaeda's global supply chain. And we finance the call centers by consuming modern technologies that need backup support, which is the role Infosys plays in the global supply chain. After contemplating the greater philosophical importance of providing opportunity to the lesser advantaged as a cure-for-terrorism, Friedman moves on to look at the more tangible aspects concerning the influence of American culture on young Indian professionals who work in the outsourcing industry, and shows that outsourcing provides evidence of a hybridization effect on Indian culture. In spite of the sinister overtones invoked by cultural imperialism theory, this hybridization of cultures is a natural side-effect of globalization, and an important attribute of Friedman’s agenda setting and framing method: As I got deeper into the call center culture, I kept wondering how this immersion in Western culture was affecting young people. I mean what is like not only to talk to us for hours on end, but to actually try to imitate us at the same time.


48 An eyebrow raising aspect of this hybridization is the attribute of “accent-neutralization” where Indian call center workers are trained to eliminate their Indian accents, and learn various American regional accents. An aspect to note of this attribute is that while Friedman is upbeat and inquisitive about the accent neutralization, there is a sense of unilateralism in this aspect of hybridization. The accent neutralization class is about eliminating Indian accents and adopting American accents, it is not about creating a new accent that blends the two together, and as importantly, it is something being driven by a business need. To look a little deeper into the hybridization aspect of the outsourcing/call center culture, Friedman follows a group of young female call center workers outside of the office and around Bangalore to see how globalization and the outsourcing boom has affected Indian culture. The first group of women Friedman follows is a pair of sisters who still live at home with their parents. Though Indian families are traditionally close, and many young call center workers stay at home and contribute part of their paychecks to their family, these Zippies still have a progressive outlook on their lifestyle. One of the call center workers, named Cynthia, asserts that with the increase in pay that young Indians have “become a lot more materialistic.” She states this as a matter of fact, without any implications of guilt, while her sister Sophia adds “We’ve become more brand conscious now,” making note that before, when they didn’t have their hot call center jobs, they didn’t look for particular brand names when buying clothes. When they arrive back at the house, pizza is served with the traditional Indian fare. After they eat lunch together, Friedman asks Cynthia who her role model is: is it Bill Gates or the Yogi? Cynthia responds “It would obviously be Bill Gates.” The divide between generations is expected,


49 and the mother is quick to respond: “I don’t like to follow Bill Gates, I won’t keep him as my model. Of course, my God is a model for me.” The next group of young Indian women that Friedman devotes time on his documentary to have taken the next step towards westernization by moving out of their parents’ home and into an apartment in the downtown district of Bangalore. While they sit together on the floor of their apartment talking about their exciting and fashionable lives, Friedman brings up the question of tradition and the tension between her generation and her parent’s generation. One of the young women answers him by saying: “Our generation is westernized. Our parents, they’re definitely not westernized. Like they want me to go home, get married, which I definitely wouldn’t do.” After the young women show Friedman around their pad, he comments that he can’t help but be reminded of the American television show “Friends.” Like Dobbs, Friedman does throw an emotional spin into the matter, though instead of it being combative and antagonistic, Friedman is upbeat and chummy, especially when he engages in face-to-face dialogue with his interview subjects in Bangalore. Concluding this part of the documentary Friedman narrates: The American writer Thomas Wolfe in 1940 wrote: you can’t go home again. In 2004 though, it seems you can’t leave home again. Every place starts to look and feel more and more like America. Is that what globalization finally comes down to? There is the illusion of irony here: is Friedman beginning to question his own beliefs? No, but it makes a good bridge into the next part of his documentary, where he examines the opposing viewpoint – not the opposing viewpoint from the American perspective, but the opposing viewpoint of Indians who worry about the assimilation of American culture into their society. This part of the documentary involves a couple of segments including interviews with Anantha Murthy the Indian novelist and scholar, a


50 profile of the Hindu Nationalist group the RSS, and an interview with members of an Indian advocacy and anti-globalization group. During the segments, Friedman leads them along, asking them various questions about their beliefs and concerns over the effects of globalization on Indian culture, and the impact of global corporations on local, Indian merchants. In spite of their concerns, Friedman concludes the segments on the Indian anti-globalization movement by telling Madhu Bhusan, a member of a women’s rights movement involved in the anti-globalization movement in India: Now, I’m sure you’re all wrong, but I’m really glad we talked to you because I think there is actually something deep there that you are actually touching – quality of life, where is all this going? Those are very important. I think you over-idealize village life a little bit. While giving them a nice Midwestern hurrah for bringing up an important issue, it still comes across as a reductive ploy to set the agenda and frame the issue towards what he believes is the right answer to the greater problem, showing that like Dobbs, Friedman also has his own agenda.


APPENDIX A DATA SAMPLE: THOMAS FRIEDMAN The Great Indian Dream By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN Published: March 11, 2004, New York Times Nine years ago, as Japan was beating America's brains out in the auto industry, I wrote a column about playing a computer geography game with my daughter, then 9 years old. I was trying to help her with a clue that clearly pointed to Detroit, so I asked her, "Where are cars made?" And she answered, "Japan." Ouch. Well, I was reminded of that story while visiting an Indian software design firm in Bangalore, Global Edge. The company's marketing manager, Rajesh Rao, told me he had just made a cold call to the vice president for engineering of a U.S. company, trying to drum up business. As soon as Mr. Rao introduced himself as calling from an Indian software firm, the U.S. executive said to him, "Namaste" — a common Hindi greeting. Said Mr. Rao: "A few years ago nobody in America wanted to talk to us. Now they are eager." And a few even know how to say hi in proper Hindu fashion. So now I wonder: if I have a granddaughter one day, and I tell her I'm going to India, will she say, "Grandpa, is that where software comes from?" Driving around Bangalore you might think so. The Pizza Hut billboard shows a steaming pizza under the headline "Gigabites of Taste!" Some traffic signs are sponsored by Texas Instruments. And when you tee off on the first hole at Bangalore's KGA golf course, your playing partner points at two new glass-and-steel buildings in the distance and says: "Aim at either Microsoft or I.B.M." How did India, in 15 years, go from being a synonym for massive poverty to the brainy country that is going to take all our best jobs? Answer: good timing, hard work, talent and luck. The good timing starts with India's decision in 1991 to shuck off decades of socialism and move toward a free-market economy with a focus on foreign trade. This made it possible for Indians who wanted to succeed at innovation to stay at home, not go to the West. This, in turn, enabled India to harvest a lot of its natural assets for the age of globalization. One such asset was Indian culture's strong emphasis on education and the widely held belief here that the greatest thing any son or daughter could do was to become 51


52 a doctor or an engineer, which created a huge pool of potential software technicians. Second, by accident of history and the British occupation of India, most of those engineers were educated in English and could easily communicate with Silicon Valley. India was also neatly on the other side of the world from America, so U.S. designers could work during the day and e-mail their output to their Indian subcontractors in the evening. The Indians would then work on it for all of their day and e-mail it back. Presto: the 24-hour workday. Also, this was the age of globalization, and the countries that succeed best at globalization are those that are best at "glocalization" — taking the best global innovations, styles and practices and melding them with their own culture, so they don't feel overwhelmed. India has been naturally glocalizing for thousands of years. Then add some luck. The dot-com bubble led to a huge overinvestment in undersea fiber-optic cables, which made it dirt-cheap to transfer data, projects or phone calls to far-flung places like India, where Indian techies could work on them for much lower wages than U.S. workers. Finally, there was Y2K. So many companies feared that their computers would melt down because of the Year 2000 glitch they needed software programmers to go through and recode them. Who had large numbers of programmers to do that cheaply? India. That was how a lot of Indian software firms got their first outsourced jobs. So if you are worried about outsourcing, I've got good news and bad news. The good news is that a unique techno-cultural-economic perfect storm came together in the early 1990's to make India a formidable competitor and partner for certain U.S. jobs — and there are not a lot of other Indias out there. The bad news, from a competition point of view, is that there are 555 million Indians under the age of 25, and a lot of them want a piece of "The Great Indian Dream," which is a lot like the American version. As one Indian exec put it to me: The Americans' self-image that this tech thing was their private preserve is over. This is a wake-up call for U.S. workers to redouble their efforts at education and research. If they do that, he said, it will spur "a whole new cycle of innovation, and we'll both win. If we each pull down our shutters, we will both lose."


APPENDIX B DATA SAMPLE: LOU DOBBS CNN LOU DOBBS TONIGHT Operation Iron Hammer in Full Force; America's Middle Class Under Siege; Neo-Conservatism Will Rise Or Fall Based On Success In Iraq Aired November 13, 2003 18:00 ET THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. ANNOUNCER: This is LOU DOBBS TONIGHT for Thursday, November 13. Here now, Lou Dobbs. (Excerpt) DOBBS: From corporations trying to keep American jobs in this country to the companies that are giving them away to cheap foreign markets. Tomorrow, in our special report, "Exporting America,' we look at the worst abusers of the H-1B and L1 visa programs. These companies have put hundreds of thousands of Americans out of work and changed their lives forever. Join us tomorrow night. Coming up, "Exporting America" -one expert who says America's relationship with India will be a win-win situation. Narayan Keshavan of the Indian-American Forum for Political Education joins us. Coming up next, "Exporting America," our special report, continues tonight. Narayan Keshavan of the Indian-American Forum For Political action and Education says exporting American jobs to India makes economic sense for the United States. DOBBS: More than 350,000 American technology jobs have been outsourced to India and to other countries as well. My next guest says it would be ideal for those jobs to stay in this country. But he says outsourcing them can help some Americans keep their job. Narayan Keshavan is the executive director of the Indian-American Forum For Political Education and joins me now. It's good to have you with us. NARAYAN KESHAVAN, EXEC. DIRECTOR, INDIAN AMERICAN FORUM FOR POLITICAL EDUCATION: It's pleasure to be with you. DOBBS: It is counterintuitive to say that outsourcing U.S. jobs overseas, whether to India, to the Philippines, Ireland, that's somehow good for the U.S. How is that? 53


54 KESHAVAN: Well, the name of the game is wealth creation. Once wealth creation is interest process -first of all, I don't agree with the notion that outsourcing is taking the job from our country to another country, especially to India or to a sister democracy. I personally believe that these jobs are not being done here properly. It's not economical to do it here, and that's why those jobs are moving to another place. DOBBS: Well, and I would take exception to that and say to you, the only reason they're going to India is because people in India, in most cases, are working for something like 80 percent to 90 percent less than their American counterpart and U.S. corporations are simply seeking out a cheaper labor pool. You certainly wouldn't resist that, would you? KESHAVAN: Cost is one of the factors in any CEO's calculation of running businesses, Lou. DOBBS: Of late, it seems principal in their consideration. KESHAVAN: Well, they are answerable to their stakeholders. And, naturally it is not just some sweatshop that's being run in India, you know. There's Microsoft. There's Oracle. There's Sun Microsystems there, IBM there. DOBBS: Well, there's GE Capital, 15,000 people in Delhi. It goes on and on. McKenzie has a full operation, as it is advising. Accenture has a full operation advising these clever CEOs, who we pay a great deal of money in this country, to show them how to lower their labor costs. (CROSSTALK) KESHAVAN: You would concede that these CEOs are not fools. (CROSSTALK) DOBBS: Oh, I would say that they're not fools. I would say, in most cases, the boards of directors, who pay them egregiously high salaries and allow to export U.S. jobs, just on the basis of cost, they're the fools. KESHAVAN: I'm not here to defend outrageous salaries. (LAUGHTER) DOBBS: OK. (CROSSTALK) DOBBS: What I'm saying to you is, I would not -I love India. I love the Indian people. It's a remarkable culture and society. When I say that this is idiotic on any basis, I'm saying -I'm not blaming India. I'm blaming the idiots here, who are


55 without reference -you talked about stakeholders. There's no more important stakeholder than the customer and the employee. KESHAVAN: First of all, let me finish my thought. DOBBS: Sure. KESHAVAN: That, once these jobs are gone there, that makes those companies viable over here, in the sense that they stay in business. The high-end jobs are retained here and the tax base is retained here. Otherwise, the whole company may have gone under and, thereby, the entire staff of the company would have been out of job. At least now, a portion of the job remains here and a portion of the job remains, say, in India, Ireland, or Israel, or wherever. And the process of wealth creation, which is where I began, continues. And I think that's a good thing. So I don't think we should look at outsourcing as just taking job from one place to another. That is what is my argument. Now... DOBBS: But that's precisely what's going on, isn't it? We are watching, in this instance, and principally with India, high-value jobs, manufacturing jobs, that are being outsourced. And we're now talking about high-value technology jobs primarily. We have programmers in this country, many of them Indian-Americans, who are out of work because these jobs are outsourced. KESHAVAN: I know a few. DOBBS: Precisely my point. KESHAVAN: Yes. DOBBS: What is the sense of the United States giving up its middle class to outsource these jobs? I just don't quite -if one has sort of a global view of the world that suggests that individual national interests don't matter, I can perhaps get there. But, as an American citizen, I can't.


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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH John G. Westerman is a journalist whose articles have appeared in The Gainesville Sun, an affiliate of the New York Times . He received his Bachelor of Arts from New York University in English and economics in 1996. John worked on Wall Street for an investment relations firm in 1997, and between 1997-2003 he worked as an Information Technology consultant with Computer Sciences Consulting Group and Accenture (formerly Andersen Consulting). John received his Master of Arts in Mass Communication, with a focus on newspaper and magazine journalism, and online media, from the University of Florida in 2005. 61