Our high tech industry is literally the last refuge of employment meritocracy, and the increase in our quality of life it has provided is unquestionable. That may all be coming to an end if our so-called civil rights leaders like Jesse Jackson have their way. You see Jesse and his crew have noticed that there is perverse reason why the make-up of companies like Google, Apple, and Intel don’t mirror the make-up of the country’s population. And they are uniting under banners like ‘Rainbow Push’ to set things right and insure that the proper levels of diversity also come to places like Silicon Valley (more here and here).
From my rather intimate experience working with Silicon Valley high tech firms, there has never been any discrimination against blacks, Hispanics, or females. In fact, it has been exactly the other way around. Such companies have bent over backward to hire qualified blacks, Hispanics, and females. The problem is that the supply of such people is low for a number of reasons discussed elsewhere that are neither the fault nor the responsibility of the employers. But that is not how our progressive cadres see what they gladly tell you is a “lack of diversity problem” that needs to be solved.
And according to simplistic socialism, the solution will be simple – put race and gender first, and demote the requirement of being able to do the job. The companies’ human resources departments will implement such policies until the population quotas are met, and everything thereafter will be hunky dory. At gatherings where this lack of diversity problem is discussed, the attendance includes appropriate representatives from the leading high-tech companies in the land. It does not pay to be absent from such obviously beneficial initiatives, and the threat of such quota systems becoming law is ever present given our gruberized electorate.
The bottom line is that these high tech enterprises will do what they have to do. But you can be sure that this industry will not benefit any more from employment quotas than have the other industries so inflicted. And maybe even less because of the nature of work involved. The learning curve for high tech skills is a lot steeper and longer than for jobs involving manufacturing, parcel delivery, sales, and hospitality services. This, of course, will make no never mind to Jesse and his halo of supportive NGOs that see lots of grants coming down to have them ‘advise’ corporations on how to meet their high tech hiring quotas.
[12dec14 update] Quota systems have been in place in Europe for quite some time now. The big headline today is that Germany will now follow those economic powerhouses of France and Italy with a new law that heralds ‘Corporate Germany set for Gender Revolution’. That’s right, EU’s real economic powerhouse Germany will henceforth require their big companies to install at least 30% women in top management slots, and divers other percentages in other jobs. The law will require even smaller companies to submit to government their plans to hire more women.
Germany’s leading employers and industry associations issued a joint statement declaring “a quota ignores that professional qualification must be the decisive criterion for filling a supervisory board position.”
This, of course, will hit their high tech and manufacturing sectors the hardest, where more often than not both management and line workers are required to have degrees in relevant fields of engineering and sciences. High tech companies, according to chip maker Infineon Technologies AG, typically must have most of their management positions filled with people having “an academic degree in mathematics, computer science, natural science or technology, with the focus on electrical engineering and physics, where the number of female students is low.”
Given the continuing funk of Europe’s economies – most are now in double dip ‘recessions’, more correctly a continuing depression – this latest socialist salve is one more kick in the groin for its wealth producing sectors, and will do nothing to solve their employment problems. By devaluing meritocracy in their hiring criteria, it will definitely make their companies less competitive in the global markets, which will be a critical problem for Germany. However, in places like India and China they are toasting Angela Merkel, the new diva of diversity in Europe.