the Freedom project

So, I haven’t been around here for a couple of weeks…mostly because of pain issues.

But, to be honest, I don’t feel much like writing.

Every day I see the changes taking place and I wonder, what happened to America?

If this is the “change” everyone was sooooo excited about, then count me out, not that I was “in” in the first place. I didn’t vote for this; I didn’t ask for this.

Government taking over private industry? Banks? Telling me I have to suffer while Congress gets its yearly pay increase, and the new White House having Wednesday evening “cocktail parties”? Government giving money that we don’t have to people who are responsible for screwing things up, and telling them to “fix it”? FIX IT?? They can’t FIX IT, because they SCREWED IT UP IN THE FIRST PLACE!!!!!!!!!

Back in my career days I had a small part in the process of outsourcing my own job to overseas contractors. Some of my co-workers were doing nothing BUT training contractors to take their jobs. It was not fun. We, the employees, kept asking anyone who would listen, “What makes you think a contractor can learn this stuff any faster than we did?”, because the truth was that they couldn’t; they didn’t. The project of outsourcing our system maintenance was planned to take 3 months. In 3 months the contractors said they would be able to maintain and sundown an entire insurance policy administration system. I was good, really good, at my job; it took me about a year to become adequately sufficient at working on this system with any level of confidence. After that year I was mentoring and training people who had been there longer than me. We were smart. What made the contractors more capable than us??

Nothing. They weren’t smarter, or more capable.

They were CHEAPER.

This was one of the company’s “freedom” projects. If they could just get free of having to pay us our exorbitant salaries and benefits, and just pay a pittance to the contractors, then the bottom line wouldn’t suffer.

Yeah, right. Like we, a handful of programmers and systems analysts, could bankrupt a company affiliated with one of the largest corporations in the world.

Had the contracting company been able to actually deliver on its commitment of taking over in 3 months, the company would have saved a boatload of money by getting rid of us and using them.

But, they couldn’t deliver because they weren’t any better than us. Just cheaper.

So, for 3 years after I left, the company was still trying to get those contractors up to speed. That system was scheduled to sundown within 5 years of the beginning of the outsourcing project. Three years in, no closer to sundown, but lots of money spent paying contractors AND employees.

We knew this would happen; we told them it would happen.This “freedom” project wound up costing the company 3 years of paying our salaries AND the contractors’ salaries as well.

How many times has anyone actually gotten MORE than what they paid for on anything? When something sounds too good to be true, there’s a reason: it IS.

So, what does this have to do with anything, with what’s going on in our country?

This.

At work, we knew that project was going to fail. We said so. When it did fail, we said, “Told you!”

But, until the failure was complete, we felt as if we had no voice, because, well, we had no voice.

I see what’s happening now and say, “Told you!”

But, I feel like I have no voice, because,well, I don’t. We have a new senator here in NC, a freshman Democrat. She announced over the weekend that she had “serious issues” with this president’s new budget plan. I have “serious issues” with it too. Everyone I know has issues with it.

Will she actually vote against it? Probably not, because, well, she’s a freshman Democrat.

Does this mean that we’re going to have to wait for the entire “project” to fail before anyone with any power admits that we were right?

I hope not, because that “project”, flawed though it may be, is still the best thing going on this planet.

America, the freedom project. Please don’t let it fail.

Is anyone listening?

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