In the old days, a company would save money through integration — which meant owning every part of their business from raw materials, parts manufacturing, assembly, distribution, all the way through sales and marketing. But in the New Economy, it’s cheaper to outsource.
Amazon outsources its JIT (“Just in Time”) delivery to LaserShip. Then LaserShip turns around and outsources to so-called “independent contractors.” The independent contractors are just employees without benefits. They buy their own uniforms, buy their own vehicles, pay their own gas, file their own taxes. Benefits? LaserShip doesn’t provide them and their non-employees can’t afford them on the buck or so they get for delivering a package.
I haven’t seen any data, but I’m guessing that it works for Amazon like it does at Walmart: the employees are subsidized by the food stamp and welfare that we pay for.
The economists call it “externalization.” I call it “screwing the taxpayer.”