What’s good for the goose.

There has been a big flap in Canada about RBC, one of Canada’s handful of chartered banks, replacing Canadian employees with cheaper foreign labour. I’m oversimplifying, but that’s pretty much the gist of it.

The mandate of any company is to maximize shareholder value, and one way to do so is to cut costs. Of course another way is to not increase the CEO’s pay while slashing th0se Canadian workers, but corporate boards never seem to see that as a problem. So yes, outsourcing is indeed moral and correct from a financial point of view.

Here’s the thing though. If a Canadian corporation can outsource their needs to a foreign company and its workers, then why can’t a Canadian citizen?

Living in Canada, I am forced to deal with one of the handful of Canadian banks, protected from competition by the government. The same is true of Canadian telecom companies, with some of the highest rates and lowest bandwidth caps in the world. The reason given for this one is to protect Canadian culture, which has allowed these companies to become multimedia behemoths, also protected from competition.

Why?

If we agree to let RBC do it, then why can’t I? I’d like to outsource my telecom needs to AT&T or Verizon. I’d like to outsource my banking needs to Wells Fargo. But I can’t.

If the government isn’t going to protect the jobs of Canadians (which is fine because they really have no specific mandate to protect existing jobs) then I simply expect to have the same rights that Canadian corporations have.

I’d like to outsource my requirements too.

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