Apple CEO Steve Jobs might be making a killing off the iPad, but the tablet computer itself is killing U.S. jobs, according to Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D- Illinois), speaking in Congress about the 2012 budget late last week.
Railing against government inaction to address the problems of 13 million unemployed Americans, Jackson turned his attention to Apple’s self-described magical device, one of which the congressman recently bought. Jackson said the device "is now probably responsible for eliminating thousands of American jobs."
Expanding on this theme, Jackson pointed to bookstore Borders’ Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection filing.
"Why do you need to go to Borders anymore? Why do you need to go to Barnes & Noble? Buy an iPad and download your book, download your newspaper, download your magazine," he stated.
Jackson also singled out Chicago State University, whose freshman class is being given iPads instead of textbooks as they enter school in what the congressman described as an effort to move to a "textbook-less campus within four years." He lamented what will become of publishing, library and bookstore jobs.
"Steve Jobs is doing pretty well. He created the iPad," Jackson said, but then said the device is made in China, doing little for American workers.
Jackson’s iPad critique marks a drastic turnabout for the congressman, who last month proposed that the federal government work to put an iPad in the hands of every student in the United States.
"These devices are revolutionizing our country — and they will fundamentally alter how we will educate our children," he said at the time.