“Et tu, Google?”  

November 21, 2011

Which side does Google take with one of their latest projects?  Does it help bring our factories back to the US from overseas?  Does it encourage the hiring of US workers?  No, Google is making it easier for American companies to use Chinese factories as suppliers. Et tu, Google?

The American economic landscape is dismal.  We have closed over 40,000 of our factories during the last decade, with most of them closing because of the flood of cheap imports entering our country from China, Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan.  This has caused millions of American workers to lose their jobs.  Many of the American workers who have been lucky enough to find a new job are being forced to accept much lower wages than they were receiving at their old factory job.

And we will surely become a much poorer nation.  As we continue to lose our manufacturing base, our middle class will continue to disappear.  But, our big corporations are greedy and have decided that they can increase their profits by using cheap foreign labor to make products, instead of using American workers.  The factories moved overseas, and more American workers found jobs in our new “service economy.”

Now, instead of making things of value, such as shoes and air conditioners, we employ millions of American workers in our service economy, doing things like marketing credit cards and trading stocks—essentially big banks and financial institutions trying to get money from the rapidly-shrinking number of American workers who still actually do produce things of real value.

And, so, what is Google working on these days? Google has created a “Google Supplier Directory,” currently in beta form, of Chinese maufacturers.  This Google Supplier Directory “enables you to directly connect with suppliers in China who make the products you and your company are interested in.”

And for American companies who are a little unsure about dealing with an unknown Chinese manufacturer: “Google has partnered with 3rd parties to provide authenticated and verified information about the different manufacturers to make sure you are not only finding the products you need but also partners you can trust.”  (Read more About Google Supplier Directory.)

Now, thanks to Google, it is easier for your company to find Chinese factories, using low-wage Chinese workers.  And these Chinese factories will most likely be able to sell you products at a lower cost than you may be presently paying for comparable products made by American workers in American factories.  And don’t worry about your new Chinese suppliers, because Google wants your new Chinese partners to be “partners you can trust.”

Our American companies can now more easily find cheap Chinese factories to make products for them.  And the American companies can increase their profits, because the products will be made by cheap Chinese workers, instead of those expensive American workers.  Yes, the American companies can close more factories and fire those expensive American workers.

But, what about the American factory workers who will lose their jobs when the American companies begin buying products made by Chinese workers?  Maybe they can join the service economy and get jobs at a credit card call center, calling people who are behind in their credit card payments.  Of course, their new call center jobs may pay only a third of what they were making at the factory.  And this assumes that the banks do not close the US call center and send those  jobs to India.

The present beta version of the Google Supplier Directory is quite small, with only 26 companies listed in one category of products, “transformers, rectifiers, and inductors.”  But, Google is a big powerful company with immense resources, which they could use to create a much larger Google Supplier Directory with many categories. (Visit the beta version of the Google Supplier Directory.)

We hope that Google abandons the Google Supplier Directory of Chinese manufacturers, and not expand it.  We have lost too many factories and jobs already.

(Thanks to TechCrunch.com for bringing this “Google Supplier Directory” to our attention.)

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