UltraCAD Design, Inc



Government Subsidies

Since some farmers are paid by the government not-to-grow crops and some medical schools are paid not-to-train doctors, it seemed logical to us there could be a case made for the government paying PCB designers not-to-design boards. We asked for Pete's help with this project.

Dear Editor,

 Once upon a time, our government, in its infinite wisdom, decided that the best way to control the price of some agricultural commodities was to "subsidize" (a governmental word for pay) farmers who agreed not to grow specific crops. The theory was that if too many people grew wheat for example, the laws of supply and demand would drive the price of wheat into the cellar. So to keep the price up, the government would pay some farmers not to grow wheat.

 Recently I read that certain New York state hospitals are being paid $400 million not to train doctors. Apparently there is an oversupply of doctors in certain fields. In a perfect world, the government also would decide that there are too many attorneys and would offer subsidies to colleges and universities that shut down their law schools. When one considers that most elected officials are lawyers, it is even more remarkable that one of those bozos hasnít thought of it already.

 Anyway, as an owner of a PCB service bureau, I have come to the conclusion that there are too many PCB designers in North America. I understand that Mary Sugden, Mona Johnson and some others say that there are not enough designers in the industry. I suspect this is a clever plot by some unknown entity that intends to undermine our economy by getting more people into board design, thereby driving the price for design services into the basement. I believe that Mary and Mona have been duped by this clever but insidious scheme. I have come to this conclusion based on the fact that when we competitively bid for jobs, we see a constant and insidious downward pressure on design services pricing. We've determined that this is primarily due to too many people scratching for the same buck.

 Therefore, I'm asking you, as a leader in our industry, to spearhead a grassroots campaign that will to have the government pay service bureaus for not designing printed circuit boards. As a starting point we intend to ask that the subsidies kick in at $5,000 for every board we do not design. I have developed a business plan for a small subsidiary with just two employees who will not design boards. Since these two employees are non-designers, I estimate that they cannot design three or four boards each/per week.

 In a few years, with success and good management, I expect to be able to expand to five or ten employees, all non-designers, who will not design boards. At that time I plan on diversifying into fabrication. By then a precedent will have been set and I expect the government will understand that the next logical step is to pay us for not fabricating the boards we donít design. If everything goes according to plan, we eventually could be paid to not assemble the boards we were paid not to fabricate or design. The possibilities seem endless.

 Please use your position as an influential editor of a prestigious trade publication to begin lobbying our government for this program. The current administration is constantly talking up high tech as the future of this country. At one time in history we were known as an agricultural society and the agricultural subsidies were eventually born out of that era, so the precedent has been set. In keeping with the spirit of this kind of government initiative, you can count on me for all the non help you may not need.

  Sincerely, Doug Brooks


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