The Instigator
monetary_sniper
Pro (for)
Winning
15 Points
The Contender
phunkyboy123
Con (against)
Losing
3 Points

Outsourcing to countries such as China has decreased the quality of goods.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/27/2007 Category: Technology
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,893 times Debate No: 1047
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (6)

 

monetary_sniper

Pro

Pick up a swiss army knife and then one of those multi-tools made in China and I can assure you the former will be the desirable one. Of the things you purchase made in China how many actually will last you generations like the American and European made goods of the pre-"made in China" epoch.

There are a few arguments that you can make for outsourcing goods to China: most notably that costs can be decreased and that we can reduce pollution by producing everything there. Sounds decent, right? Well... this is in reality a very flawed pair of arguments in that the country that is outsourcing its goods in reality becomes dependent on China and pollution is occurring nonetheless, just elsewhere.

But this is not the topic of our debate today. Today I am here to discuss the flat out drop in quality that Chinese made goods entering the marketplace has caused. Do you want to drink apple-juice with deadly bacteri´┐Ż in it? How about buying a Barbie-doll for a child which contains lead paint? Even something as simple as buying a panini-grill which is made of flismy plastic that will break in a single use? We have grown accustomed to inferior quality goods simply because they are cheaper. This, fellow debater, is a poor trend. Would you like an Omega if it is the only watch you buy for twenty years or ten chinese-made watch that will break every two years?
Case in point.
phunkyboy123

Con

Outsourcing is an important part of our economy. The United States have been using other countries to make products for years. Take cars for instance, many people like cars like Ferraris, Porsches, etc. Where do all those cars come from? Certainly not from the United States. Also all those big brands of shoes that people buy? They also come from outsourcing. Face it, this countries relies on outsourcing.
Debate Round No. 1
monetary_sniper

Pro

The definition of "outsourcing" (under headword -out-) in the Oxford English Dictionary is "Contracting outside work, directing work to an outside source [usually a foreign country]." Neither of these fits under the critereon you established with your "Ferraris and Porsches" example. Those are cars made in their respective countries of design, and have been since their existence. Nobody would buy a chinese made Ferrari but a lot of Chinese DO buy Italian made Ferraris.

I would also like to examine your argument that we have been relying on it for many years. This is argumentum ad antiquitem, argument from tradition, one of the most common red herring fallacies in existence. Just because something has been true or existed for many years does not make it correct or true.

On another note, take a look at the argument that major shoe and/or clothing brands rely upon outsourcing for revenue and cheap goods. How does this in any way relate to the QUALITY of outsourced goods, the topic of our discussion? I can assure you that a well made American or European product will last significantly longer than one made under sweatshop conditions in southeast Asia. It will cost more, true, but it will also provide openings for unskilled and even some skilled labour here in the United States.

I invite you, hereinafter, to discuss the QUALITY of outsourced goods and not our dependence upon it: for that is the question I have posed.
phunkyboy123

Con

Outsourcing is a good way to produce more products for less of the price. Also how well the product is made is dependent on who makes it. It doesn't matter where the product is made. A product made in China can work and last just as long as if it is made in the United States. Back then in the 1700's the 13 colonies use things made from other countries that function just as well as the British's. This proves that outsourcing isn't a bad thing.
Debate Round No. 2
monetary_sniper

Pro

Outsourcing is a good way to produce more products for less of the price. Also how well the product is made is dependent on who makes it. It doesn't matter where the product is made. A product made in China can work and last just as long as if it is made in the United States. Back then in the 1700's the 13 colonies use things made from other countries that function just as well as the British's. This proves that outsourcing isn't a bad thing.

You bring up a very interesting point. It is true that whomever actually makes the product is responsible for the quality of the product regardless of locale. There is, however, a slight flaw with this reasoning. In China particularly, there is the issue of poor government oversight of inner-factory operations. Let's say I am producing bouncy-balls. I, in the U.S. design it, patent it, and make the processes for producing it. I then send these over to a factory in China. In theory they will use my instructions, produce my product to spec's and ship it back to me. The reality, however, is that since most of the designing companies don't actually run the factories where the products are produced or don't actively oversee them, many a time protocol within the factory is altered for cost-reductive purposes. Sometimes this is harmless and results in extra-profits for the factory. Other times, however, consumers are harmed or receive inferior products.

There is also an other reason for why products fabricated particularly in China have inferior quality. Let me introduce to you a multi-tool example. We are all familiar, for example, with what a Swiss-Army knife is. Pick your Chinese equivalent, there are many. Why will the Swiss Made model always be better? Because in hyper-developed nations such as Switzerland, the labor force tends to be highly skilled despite a seemingly unskilled role they might have. On top of that they are allowed to work in highly lit, clean-room like conditions with the latest equipment in the world. In China, workers are made to work in dim lighting, under excruciatingly stressful conditions in unhygienic factories. Naturally, the former will result in a better product.
Do you not believe that in this scenario outsourcing Swiss-Army knifes would reduce quality? The chief source of money saving is the fact that China offers cheap unskilled labour and a near unregulated avenue for factories: both things that can reduce the quality of the final product.
phunkyboy123

Con

It isn't China that wants to be in dimly lit rooms. The reasons that the Chinese workers are in these poor conditions are because the companies wanting to use outsourcing don't pay what is needed to work. Like what you said, " I, in the U.S. design it, patent it, and make the processes for producing it. I then send these over to a factory in China." You choose to use outsourcing, but you don't choose to provide the correct facilities for the workers. That becomes your problem for creating faulty and possibly "dangerous" products. Outsourcing isn't bad, it is who the person is that chooses outsourcing that is bad. If you choose to outsource then you must provide the correct facilities. It isn't up to the workers.
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by mmadderom 9 years ago
mmadderom
There are many reasons to dislike outsourcing, but product quality isn't one of them. We don't purchase goods made in China, Taiwain, etc. because of quality, we purchase them because of price. To produce the same exact quality goods in America would cost exponentially more money, hence we'd pay exponentially more than we do now.

Quality products can be and are produced in those countries. Check out the "made in" tag on the various components of the computer you are currently typing on, for example. The machine may have been assembled in the USA, but all of the components it was assembled from were made elsewhere for cost effectiveness, else you computer would cost -at least- 3 times as much.

Sure, "buy American" is a great slogan and has it's merits, but when it comes to our wallets, it's not quite as important anymore.
Posted by Conspicuous_Conservative 9 years ago
Conspicuous_Conservative
I would love to debate this issue because it is more important then many people think. Unfortunately you are on the side I want to be on and you have hit the major points good luck
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by libertyforall 9 years ago
libertyforall
monetary_sniperphunkyboy123Tied
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Vote Placed by monetary_sniper 9 years ago
monetary_sniper
monetary_sniperphunkyboy123Tied
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Vote Placed by RepublicanView333 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by Jon08 9 years ago
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monetary_sniperphunkyboy123Tied
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Vote Placed by weeeeeeee 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by RMK 9 years ago
RMK
monetary_sniperphunkyboy123Tied
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