El síndrome del tabloide

El mundo es un sitio complicado e intrincado. Entonces, ¿cómo hemos de entender siquiera una pequeña parte de él, digamos, por ejemplo, a los Estados Unidos y sus políticas económicas? Es un gran problema, porque las fuentes normales en las que de niño me enseñaron a confiar –los periódicos y los noticieros televisivos—se están desmoronando.

Por ejemplo, a principios de febrero de 2004, el entonces presidente del Consejo de Asesores Económicos del Presidente, N. Gregory Mankiw, dedicó algún tiempo a tratar de explicar las cuestiones relacionadas con la “subcontratación” a los principales reporteros políticos de Estados Unidos. La descripción estándar de la subcontratación que hace Mankiw es muy parecida a la mía –y en efecto a la de todos los economistas neoclásicos y neoliberales—y es más o menos así:

Al igual que con cualquier cambio tecnológico que aumente el volumen del comercio internacional de bienes y servicios, la subcontratación de empleos del sector servicios crea ganadores y perdedores –pero casi con seguridad más ganadores que perdedores. Los grandes ganadores son los trabajadores de los países pobres que obtienen mejores empleos trabajando para empresas que así pueden exportar servicios a los países ricos. Los mayores perdedores son quienes tenían los empleos del sector servicios que se subcontratan; ahora deben buscar empleos nuevos y diferentes y casi con seguridad resulta que sus habilidades valen menos.

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