There is no doubting the popularity of Apple products on a global scale. There have been hundreds of millions of iPhones sold worldwide. However, in recent news there has been some dispute over Apple’s decision to outsource the majority of its labor force to a company in China, Foxconn Technology. While much of the focus has been on Apple and the Chinese employee’s working conditions in the Foxconn facilities, there another important side to take into account: how does the average American feel about Apple’s decision to emply Foxconn employees over Americans?
The outsourcing of “American jobs” has been an important topic in political and social debates with many Americans blaming this outsourcing as the reason for their being no “good” jobs in America. It used to be that American made companies, like Apple, took pride in the fact that they were “all-American”- their products were manufactured and produced American factories, often times losing profit in the process. The brand “Made in the U.S.A.” once had significant meaning; it was not too long ago that the majority of Apple’s products were made in America. Today, Apple employs 43,000 people in the United States while, in combination with Apple’s contractors, Apple is responsible for employing some 700,000 non-Americans. Needless to say, this has not resonated well with the thousands of unemployed Americans. In the New York Times article that first reported on the Apple’s use of Foxconn, we learn of the reasons why companies outsource their work. However, in defense of American jobs, President Baraka Obama confronted Steve Jobs, then CEO of Apple, with a question: what would it take to make iPhones in the United States? Jobs response: “Those jobs aren’t coming back.”
While many activists and concerned Americans are appalled at the working conditions and low wages of the Foxconn workers, they seem to be even more concerned about themselves. After looking at many blogs and opinion articles concerning Apple jobs in America, the overall consensus is not to pay the Foxconn employees American wages, instead of the $17 a day they currently receive, give those jobs to Americans and pay them those wages! It seems Americans will be displeased for a while; according to the executives at Apple, those jobs will not be coming back any time soon – if ever.