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Jesse Jackson Jr. Says iPads Kill American Jobs (But He Still Uses One)


"Let me be clear about a few things..."

Illinois Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. may have set a record for fastest flip-flop on a subject.

As reported here in March, Jackson was on House floor praising Apple for their iPods, even talking about changing the Constitution to get these marvels as well as laptops into the hands of kids in the ghetto. He claimed this would be a large part of ending our unemployment crisis.

A week later, Congressman Jackson again stood up and promoted his idea, holding an iPad and a Kindle as he made this statement;

"Let me be clear about a few things, these devices are revolutionizing our country — and they will fundamentally alter how we will educate our children."

What a difference a month makes.

This past week, the Congressman has decided that Apple, Steve Jobs and his evil the iPad are not good for America, but rather a job-killing juggernaut that is hurting American businesses like Borders and Barnes & Noble, forcing these companies to close stores as people would rather just download the latest newspaper, magazine or book to their iPad instead of driving to the store.

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(h/t RCP)

His exact words were;

'A few short weeks ago I came to the House floor after having purchased an iPad and said that I happened to believe, Mr. Speaker, that at some point in time this new device, which is now probably responsible for eliminating thousands of American jobs. Now Borders is closing stores because, why do you need to go to Borders anymore? Why do you need to go to Barnes & Noble? Buy an iPad and download your newspaper, download your book, download your magazine.'

A few facts for the Congressman seems to have missed.

Borders has been in decline for years. Their recent Chapter 11 filing includes a plan to reorganize and make the company more efficient, so they can survive and keep as many as possible of their 17,500 employees.

Apple is a job creator in America. An SEC filing in late 2010 showed Apple's full-time workforce had grown to 46,000 - and that was a staggering 35% increase in employees year-to-year.

And then there are jobs created by the 'halo efffect' of something like the iPad.

Thousands of entrepreneurial people have developed and continue to develop applications (Apps) for the iPad, in some cases creating companies where none existed before.

There are myriad options like cases, keyboards, speakers and stands for the iPad, all generated because the product was born.

And those products don't make it to market by themselves.  They have to be promoted, advertised, sold, packaged, shipped and delivered. That all requires people here in America, working.

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