A warm round of applause and hearty congratulations to my friend and colleague Ron French, who kicks Ruth Reichl’s restaurant-reviewing fanny off the nightstand this week with his book, “Driven Abroad: The Outsourcing of America.” An expansion of a 2004 Detroit News series, his book examines the exodus of one automotive widget maker — wire harnesses, specifically, once made in the Thumb, then outsourced to Mexico, Honduras and China, with unexpected results in each venue.
You’ll laugh, you’ll cry…you’ll be grateful you went to college. Although just today, one of Kate’s friend’s moms was telling me about Indian radiologists reading American X-rays and CAT scans.
Ron used to work with me at the News-Sentinel, and later at the Journal Gazette. Oddly, neither paper is mentioned in his author’s bio.
J. Rae said on June 16, 2006 at 5:39 pm
Your friend’s observation regarding the outsourcing of X-ray to India is correct. Not sure how long this has been going on, but I believe it’s a well developed industry. See
Scroll down for the reference to the US.
Priscilla said on June 17, 2006 at 10:06 am
I recently heard that Microsoft is laying off the editorial staff that produces Encarta (their encyclopedia) and is outsourcing the work to India.
mary said on June 17, 2006 at 5:16 pm
What did you think of Ruth Reichl’s book?
nancy said on June 17, 2006 at 7:48 pm
I liked it, but, of all three volumes of her memoirs, this one was my least favorite. Review after review of restaurants I’ll likely never visit? Snoozers. And the fact the NYT is a sewer of back-stabbers comes as no surprise. I tried her spaghetti carbonara recipe, though, and it was worth the time.
Pam said on June 18, 2006 at 11:37 am
Having worked for years in the telecomm industry, there is virtually no work short of McDonalds that cannot be outsourced. The rapid spread of IP networking, wireless and the internet has made the location of the workplace irrelevant. We need to work on education in this country so our workers have something more to bring to the mix.
John said on June 18, 2006 at 7:19 pm
Well the pay may never be that much better than McDonalds but I’m reasonably sure they can’t easily outsource reporter jobs. They may hire Indians to come here and do the job but it still takes someone to be at the meetings, walk the streets, and talk to people on the beat.
Still if I worked at Mc Donalds I’d get a free meal each shift. That almost used to be true of reporters but the times are changing.