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Cringley: H-1B Visa Abuse Limits Wages and Steals US Jobs 795

walterbyrd sends this snippet from an article by Robert X. Cringely: "Big tech employers are constantly lobbying for increases in H-1B quotas citing their inability to find qualified US job applicants. Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates and other leaders from the IT industry have testified about this before Congress. Both major political parties embrace the H-1B program with varying levels of enthusiasm. Bill Gates is wrong. What he said to Congress may have been right for Microsoft but was wrong for America and can only lead to lower wages, lower employment, and a lower standard of living. This is a bigger deal than people understand: it's the rebirth of industrial labor relations circa 1920. Our ignorance about the H-1B visa program is being used to unfairly limit wages and steal — yes, steal — jobs from U.S. citizens."
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Cringley: H-1B Visa Abuse Limits Wages and Steals US Jobs

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  • Probably true ... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:13PM (#41781443) Homepage

    There isn't a shortage of labor, there's a shortage of cheap labor.

    Industry just wants to keep making massive amounts of money, but pay their staff less than the salaries the market created.

  • by beamin ( 23709 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:13PM (#41781451)

    Willingness to accept substandard wages?

  • I'm surprised (Score:5, Insightful)

    by koan ( 80826 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:14PM (#41781463)

    That this isn't common knowledge, corporations are trying to return us to 1800's regulation, it isn't just the H1B's, it's every facet of the larger corporations.

  • Union Talk (Score:2, Insightful)

    by number17 ( 952777 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:18PM (#41781501)
    This sounds like union talk as they are against H-1B visas. Unions are bad therefore H-1B visas must be good. Remember, if you don't want to get paid the same wage as an H-1B then get another job as there is somebody else in line!!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:20PM (#41781531)

    For the software industry leaders, H1-Bs are used for bringing in MSc's, Ph.Ds, and other top talent from other countries. Ordinary IT jobs aren't at stake because that type of job is beneath them.

  • by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:21PM (#41781539) Homepage

    They might also start companies and create jobs. True, wages may fall in the short-term, but having a larger educated and working population will help us in the long run.

    Not really. Under the visa, they can only stay a few years.

    In the long term, you're training foreign nationals to do your jobs, and then take that knowledge with them.

    Competing with India for wages in the long term is a losing proposition ... they have vastly more room to go up, than you do down.

    I'm willing to bet of the 500,000 or so tech workers with H1B visas, there's almost as many of your own citizens in the same field who are out of work. This is just a cheap labor pool for corporations, and short term benefits.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:24PM (#41781577)

    Yes, taking the cream of the crop of foreigners who you don't have to pay for their education or upbringing and having them work in tech or science fields is terrible economics. A mediocre American who the government has to subsidize $200k for education is such a better investment.

    By the way, how many H-1Bs were issued last year? 65,000. Out of a labor force of 150 million.

    This is just xenophobia.

  • by srussia ( 884021 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:24PM (#41781587)
    Wage arbitrage now was caused by labor mobility barriers set up in the past.

    Lesson: Don't set up a large potential difference if you don't want to get a big shock arcing through down the road.
  • by MickyTheIdiot ( 1032226 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:29PM (#41781657) Homepage Journal

    It's is a real uphill battle for congresscritters, especially the long time reps, to understand this.

    Post WWII until maybe mid-80s I think it might have been a valid belief that doing whatever helps the biggest corporations will automagicly help the economy. I think high speed communications invalidates this idea completely.

    In other words, it used to be that if a company grew that it would force them to help the individuals that needs jobs. If that ever was the case it isn't so now. So pouring money and tax breaks into a big company does nothing but enrich the few people at the top of that chain because they can just as easily hire someone offshore.

    I don't think people in Congress understand this. And it extends to H1Bs, because if they get the "smart" immigrants then it means more domestic jobs under similar logic. I think many reps in Congress probably want to help their local constituents but haven't been able to break out of this logic. Look at how dumb our legislation with tech is... it falls in the same category of ignorance.

    Again, I think there are some that just don't care if they are helping normal joes or not. Personally I thin Romney falls into that camp.

  • by macbeth66 ( 204889 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:30PM (#41781667)

    That is easy to answer. They are paid the same as Americans. However, for the most part, they are much more supplicant. In other words, they'll kiss their boss' ass and we know how much they love that. There is a fear that they will be fired and forced to return home.

  • by pwizard2 ( 920421 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:31PM (#41781681)
    Are you kidding me? Congress has lost its goddamned mind and now works for the "job creators" who complain about a shortage of cheap labor. There's plenty of domestic labor in this country, its just not being considered because it has the audacity to ask for a living wage. I swear, the rich want to drag us back to the gilded age.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:32PM (#41781685)

    There isn't a shortage of labor, there's a shortage of cheap labor.

    Industry just wants to keep making massive amounts of money, but pay their staff less than the salaries the market created.

    Erm, sort of. 'Industry' (read:corporations) currently owe everything to investors. The prevalent philosophy in business seems to be "profits for the shareholders at all costs". In the short run this makes for a lot of happy investors. In the long run this makes for slave labor.


    Yep. I wrote it. SLAVE LABOR.

    Call it whatever you want but hiring people to work in THIS country but paying them less than it costs to live in this country is a form of slavery. I'm sure the proponents of the H1-B visa program, the ultra-low minimum wage, and all of the other programs to pay people as little as possible would argue that 'as long as people are paid it isn't slavery', but come on! At what point do you start paying your employees in food stamps and section-8 housing vouchers so you can cut out the middle-man? When do we (as in 'we the people') finally say people shouldn't live like this just for the sake of profit?

    If humans have a 'right to life' as so many of the Republicans like to say, then they have a right to earn a decent living. If corporations can't pay employees what they should then maybe it's time we did a mercy killing on the corporations. People before profits.

  • by Penguinisto ( 415985 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:34PM (#41781733) Journal

    I myself am paid at par with my American colleagues.

    ...and that's the problem. If $MEGACORP can get employees for a lower price by way of H1-B, then the local people trying to get a job there are forced to accept the same lower wage, or they don't get the job.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:35PM (#41781741)

    An unemployed citizen isn't going to cost the government nearly as much as raising and educating a citizen to the level to work in a tech or science field. And this foreigner will almost certainly become a citizen. In effect, an H-1B allows the US to steal the valuable labor and contributions to society from another country.

    From my experience, the people who oppose H-1Bs tend to be very xenophobic. Have a conversation with them and soon it will digress to topics like self-deportation or worse.

  • by popsensation ( 1405041 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:37PM (#41781773) Homepage
    I disagree with this article. I believe there a shortage of developers. I know there are cited studies but in my experience there is a serious shortage of developers in the USA. Being part of the industry for ten years now I've never seen a time where a developer was unemployed for any reason other then personal choice. Tucson, for example, has been steadily adding/employing about 100 additional programmers each year while graduating 90 (most of whom immediately relocate). High paying software jobs sit unfilled for months, in some cases years at Ratheon, UofA, IBM, and many more places.
  • by codeAlDente ( 1643257 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:38PM (#41781799)
    In your thought exercise, are whites allowed to immigrate to America?
  • Re:THEY (Score:5, Insightful)

    by K. S. Kyosuke ( 729550 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:39PM (#41781811)

    Pure profiteering, screw the locals!

    I suppose you're a Native American/Amerindian/whatever they are called today. If not, please excuse me while I'm savoring the irony of former immigrants/former immigrants' kids despising the new immigrants.

  • by lgw ( 121541 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:39PM (#41781817) Journal

    Otherwise known as a fair market wage?

    Whoever's writing as Cringly is just being racist here. There's no moral wrong when a non-American gets an "American job", whether through immigraiton or offshoring. Everyone deserves to compete for any job, without prefernce given by race or place of birth.

    Sure, I'd personally like to see all the cool developer jobs reserved for somewhat overweight middle-aged white guys, but that's because I'm a greedy bastard, not because it would be some kind of moral virtue!

  • by Peter Simpson ( 112887 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:41PM (#41781837)
    Not *every* company using H1B is doing it for evil reasons. But some of the larger ones certainly seem to be. I have seen "help wanted" ads posted looking for Masters' degree in Comp Sci with some extremely specific qualifications and ridiculously low salary. I refuse to believe that there are not any US citizens who could do that job. I doubt anyone who went through a US university could afford to take it, though.
  • by oracleofbargth ( 16602 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:49PM (#41781941) Homepage

    Whoever's writing as Cringly is just being racist here.

    Not necessarily racist (though that is a possibility), but definitely isolationist.

    It is something like a cry of "America for Americans," but without realizing that phrase means shipping all the white people back to Europe.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:50PM (#41781959)

    Not from around here, are you...?

    U.S. of A. citizens can't compete with foreign nationals who:
        -- don't pay federal income tax (if they're in the US for less than so many days - can't google the #, somewhere around 150);
        -- don't plan on buying a home (remember, they're temps), so don't have to deal with property tax, etc.;
        -- willing to live multi-family in a single home;
        -- are not up to U.S. educational standards (especially true in the IT field);
        -- willing to work many hours OT without compensation (what else are they going to do here).

    The U.S. is their gold mine. They work here for a few years and return to India and are then very, very well off (if they saved
    while in the U.S.)

  • by pwizard2 ( 920421 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:52PM (#41782015)
    Ok, how do you gain skill/experience if you can't even catch a break in your own country because you have to compete with the rest of the world? What if you were born poor? Starting from zero is HARD. What if someone becomes disabled through no fault of their own, are you also against taking care of people who can't care for themselves anymore? I guess the people who can't make it in your society should just starve to death in a gutter someplace. Ayn Rand would approve.
  • by NatasRevol ( 731260 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @03:56PM (#41782051) Journal

    H-1Bs are used when there is pressure on employers to pay higher wages because a certain skill is in high demand

    In other words, capitalists don't like it when the negative part of capitalism applies to them.

  • by mk1004 ( 2488060 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:00PM (#41782091)
    Um, the free market, applied to labor/companies, would say that salaries and job demand will level out over time. If you bring in a lot of outside labor, you drive salaries down. Students entering college will look at these lower wages and say, hum, I'll go for a degree that's not engineering related. Which gives employers their ammo that "we just can't find qualified US applicants." Stop the H1-B visas and wages will rise until supply and demand settle out. It's has nothing to do with racism: , By artificially increasing supply, H1-B visas keep wages low for jobs that tech companies cannot offshore.
  • by mapsjanhere ( 1130359 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:06PM (#41782191)
    So, the H1-B worker, by your calculation, lives of donuts he steals in the break room and sleeps on a park bench? While there are probably some H1-B workers who remit a fraction of their income to their home country, most live in the community like every one else, renting a house, buying a car and groceries, and try to get ahead in the new country. As for the "stealing American's jobs", we graduate some 5,000,000 people a year from US colleges. Compare that to the 85,000 total H1B visa given out annually, less than 2% of the total job market entries.
  • by Penguinisto ( 415985 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:11PM (#41782253) Journal

    Otherwise known as a fair market wage?

    I would agree with you except for one big, fat caveat:

    With H1-Bs, business and government are colluding to depress wages (albeit with government as a semi-unwitting partner in this affair).

    If someone shows up from overseas and applies for the position at a lower wage, then it would be perfectly fair. Because of this, race doesn't mean a damned thing in the equation, at all.

    But, when government steps in, things definitely get hinkey. Because companies can now knock down wages across the board for a given position, they can use the overall savings to actively seek and bring in H1-B workers, and still come out ahead.

    In other words? Don't think micro-scale, think macro-scale.

  • by fiannaFailMan ( 702447 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:16PM (#41782339) Journal

    For the software industry leaders, H1-Bs are used for bringing in MSc's, Ph.Ds, and other top talent from other countries. Ordinary IT jobs aren't at stake because that type of job is beneath them.

    Incorrect. I got into the US on a H1B for web development work and I only have a bachelors. And while my starting wage was nothing special (I was 26 at the time), it grew soon enough to the point where I'm now earning above the market rate for the work I do and I'm a green card holder, eventually I'll be a citizen. My employer and I spent a fortune on lawyer's fees and it was an enormous hassle for him and for me.

    This is not about "slavery". This is about finding the right talent for the job. And no, there wasn't plenty of Americans who could do the work as well as I could. And don't anyone give me any of this xenophobic "stealing our jobs" nonsense. The right person should be hired for the job based on merit, not nationality.

  • by medv4380 ( 1604309 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:18PM (#41782359)
    You're painting with awfully wide brush strokes there.

    I see that throughout history that diversity -- of any form: religious, ethnic, cultural, racial -- has failed wherever it has been tried

    When, and where throughout history? I can site at least 1 case where the lack of diversity was the cause the the collapse of a nations economy. France under Lois XIV under their "everyone must be Catholic" logic ended up convincing a large portion of the educated to leave the country. That lack of diversity caused a brain drain that helped to cause the financial collapse of the entire country.

    The very nature of Diversity means that it will not last for long unless you keep importing it. Best example of that is China. You can go ahead and conquer it, but in a few generations your decedents will be Chinese.

    Uniformity has advantages in getting everyone on board and headed the same direction, but it also has weaknesses and doesn't adapt to new things quickly. Diversity is a very good environment for creativity, but also has the drawback of generating strife between different groups. Nether solution is ideal, but that's life.

  • by lgw ( 121541 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:19PM (#41782391) Journal

    The supply is the world supply. H1B visas don't change the supply, they just move some of it to a more expensive place. If there are too many programmers (there aren't yet), the job should pay so little that society as a whole generates fewer of them. Work is only valuable because someone needs that work, not because it's what you'd like to do.

  • by shutdown -p now ( 807394 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:22PM (#41782433) Journal

    Generally in nations such as China and India, a good portion of that wealth is illegitimate. That is to say, much of it was either obtained via politics or corruption (paid for by the tax payer of course) vs honest salary based on a free market competitive wage.

    How do you think most wealthy families in the West got started back in the day?

    Vast majority of wealth in the world is taken away from other people (sometimes illegally, and sometimes simply by writing laws in your favor). It's just that this has happened ages ago in Europe, and is only happening now in developing countries.

  • Nonsense (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Charliemopps ( 1157495 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:25PM (#41782455)
    Our best coders are all from India. They run circles around our in-house guys, including me. Anyone that's willing to come to this country, work hard, not break the law, and contribute to our country should be allowed to do so. The shame here is that they are getting Visas instead of citizenship. WE are robbing India of their talent... not the other way around.
  • by lgw ( 121541 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:25PM (#41782463) Journal

    Ok, how do you gain skill/experience if you can't even catch a break in your own country because you have to compete with the rest of the world? What if you were born poor?

    I was born poor. My first programming job paid less than we now pay most freshers in India, and I was living in a major US city! Now I make a ton of money. Your first job will totally suck - get used to the idea.

    guess the people who can't make it in your society should just starve to death in a gutter someplace. Ayn Rand would approve.

    False dilemma. Your choices are not "do this one thing I want to do" and "starve". There are always jobs with an actual labor shortage, and society would benefit if people did those jobs instead of what they do now.

    Programming pays more than the median income in pretty much every nation - as you would expect for a job that's hard to train for, and hard to do. But your first job in the field is for your training, not your enrichment.

  • by CAIMLAS ( 41445 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:26PM (#41782473) Homepage

    Ok, so that's cool and all. Did you bother thinking?

    H1B workers only come into "in-demand" careers in highly competitive fields where large amounts of sensitive data is concerned. You're ignoring crucial things like:

    * This diminishes domestic demand for employees, resulting in both fewer people entering the fields and lower wages
    * These people are taking jobs in industries with a fraction of that 150 million number. (How big is the IT industry? The biotech industry? Etc.)
    * On the lower side of the pay scale, there are illegals taking jobs and driving down the price for cheap labor as well.

    We're already at the point in the US where people well into their 20s can look forward to "dorming" well into their 30s with housemates and roommates, and where many are still living at home because of higher costs and minimal opportunity. This is partially their fault (for picking something like an English major in college), but not everyone can be an engineer. God knows even those who are (regardless of race or culture) are rarely up to snuff.

    My personal experience with Indian H1B workers is that there are a lot of them. They're upwards of 10%-30% of the IT workers I've seen. Some are very good, exceptional even. Many, if not most, are no better than and not as good as "common" DeVry types. Most of them lack crucial problem solving skills which are a "given" in Western cultures. Now, imagine for a second if there were 10% more jobs in IT oriented fields than there are now, and had been since H1B workers became common place. Would wages be lower? No, they'd probably be higher than they are now by a fair margin, making comparable amounts to other "skilled professional" careers with similar experience - as opposed to markedly less than eg. civil engineers or the like. A crucial point to consider is that there is a very large number of skilled, experienced, and unemployed people in the US right now who are looking for work (or in some cases, have stopped trying) who are "unemployable" because they're too old, too experienced, or two "American" (what with being insistent about only working 40-45 hours a week, or the like).

    I wonder if either of the Presidential candidates would dare to say that on their first day of office, they would create 65,000 high-paying, skilled domestic employment opportunities. It could be done fairly trivially, and there are certainly close to that number of Americans looking for work in in-demand fields. So why not hire a 22 year old college grad from the US than a 21 year old Indian with questionable education or experience?

  • Re:THEY (Score:4, Insightful)

    by CAIMLAS ( 41445 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:34PM (#41782585) Homepage

    Oh, it's not ironic.

    My immigrant ancestors assimilated into the culture. Yes, they brought their own culture, but by and large (and in no small part, under the threat of force by the government), they adopted the rules and standards of their new homeland. See: Irishmen becoming educated, Italians starting legitimate businesses, Germans ceasing to be proud Germans (all of which added a very crucial part to the cultural ethics and fabric of the nation).

    Travel through San Francisco some time, or any other current immigrant ghetto (there are a lot of them now), and tell me how well you think those people have assimilated into the culture of the US. Sorry, they really haven't.

  • by s73v3r ( 963317 ) <> on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:39PM (#41782645)

    I believe there a shortage of developers

    You only believe there's a shortage of developers because you aren't willing to pay enough to attract them to your company.

  • by BVis ( 267028 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @04:48PM (#41782775)

    So why not hire a 22 year old college grad from the US than a 21 year old Indian with questionable education or experience?

    The question makes inaccurate assumptions. You are assuming that employers value education and experience over how little they can pay their employees. That, and both potential hires are pretty much blank slates in terms of whether they can actually effectively use the education/experience they have gained.

    I mean think about it: Your college grad more that likely has very little to no experience, and you can't be sure if the foreign worker actually has the experience he/she is claiming. So, the experience/education factor is basically a wash.

    In the end, what is an employer at a for-profit private business going to do: Pay the US college grad $X or the H1-B worker $X * .75? I'll give you a hint: They'll hire the H1-B every day of the week and twice on Sunday. Plus, the domestic worker is going to want silly things like "health insurance" and "a 401k" and "dignity in employment", while the H1-B worker not only will accept work without benefits, they are far more likely to eat the shit that the employer feeds them in the form of unpaid overtime and slave-labor working conditions. I mean, what are they going to do, complain? Complainers get fired no matter their nationality or status, but the difference is that the H1-B faces deportation if he/she gets fired, so he/she is much less likely to do anything if he/she is poorly treated.

    Employers like spineless worker bees that they can pay peanuts. Period.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 26, 2012 @05:03PM (#41782949)

    You forgot to mention the part where if it wasn't for them bringing you buddy and many more like him, you would be making 75k a year instead of the 40k a year you are making now.

    But as they artificially rose the number of qualified applicants while making sure they would work for less than the local would, over time, they have driven down the wages without you even noticing that your wages and raises didn't come close to matching the rate of inflation anymore. And many, if they couldn't get the visa's just outright hired illegal labor.

    Reminds me of the local Smithfield packing plant we have out here. About 8 years ago, you couldn't find anyone there making over $8 an hour and complained how the management were slave drivers. They claimed that was all they could afford. Then they make nation headlines where thousands were deported followed by thousands more Mexicans walking off the job in protest of it and a Union forming. Now I got friends making $13 an hour after only 2 years there, probably about $14-15 now.

    The more people you can pump into an area looking for a specific job, they more you can drive the wage of that job down, especially when you are cherry picking your labor pool from areas where they work for MUCH less than your current area is.

  • by Trailer Trash ( 60756 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @06:00PM (#41783707) Homepage

    There's a difference between "capitalism" and "free markets", and you're talking about markets here. The free market pushes the cost of labor up in this case, so employers lobby the government to allow them to bring in cheaper workers to push the cost back down. The problem is (as usual) government.

  • by Genda ( 560240 ) <mariet@got . n et> on Friday October 26, 2012 @06:27PM (#41784003) Journal

    Apparently economics is not your strong suit, friend. America through the 70s and 80s protected its middle class by managing a complex structure of trade barriers intended to keep American wages high and prevent the flood of dollars into the world economy diluting American wealth. At the same time American corporations began to globalize and build strong networks with the other global enterprises, and opening American borders to trade was great for them but sadly destructive to the American middle class as it began to have to compete for jobs with people who could afford to work for pennies an hour for labor jobs and just a few dollars an hour for technical jobs. These people lived in economies where the cost of living was a tenth of what it was in America and so American Nationals had no sane way of competing. So you want to get something clear off the bat, fair market wage is a fantasy. Until you homogenize the economies of the world so everyone has the same cost of living, same tax burden, same access to educational resources, medicine, and civil liberties, there can be no such thing as a fair market because your trading apples and oranges.

    America has been bled dry so that the dollar and the rupee are quick approaching the same value. The American people will soon be able to compete with laborers in the global market because their wages will be in fact the same. This is not a good thing for Americans. We have been reduced to a third world nation and our wealth has been squandered on multinational corporations who no longer owe American any allegiance. I've personally known hundreds of engineers who don't engineer anymore, because after the Dotcom crash, their jobs went away and they never came back. I lost my retirement in two massive stock crashes. I work for 60% of what I made in 2001, and if I account for the real value of the dollar that's probably closer to 45% (and don't let them lie to you about inflation, the dollar is a shadow of its pre 2000 value.)

    I'm not big on waving flags, but let me ask you a few questions. Do you believe that the vast majority of dollars foreign workers are paid remains in the American economic system, or does a lot of it go back to the home country to support family there, and what is the impact of dollars flying out of out economy? Do you think that foreign workers have any loyalty to America, or do your think they take what they learn back home to start businesses that compete with us? I could actually go on quite a while, but hope I'm painting a picture here for you. The wealth of all kinds leaves out country and makes us all poorer. This is the place your children will inherit. What will be left of it when you've taken your share?

    All I need to say, is what is the state of the middle class in this country, and what is the state of technology workers in the U.S. today, and my first question is how many of the AMERICAN workers were American in 1995 and how many are today.

  • by Catbeller ( 118204 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @06:30PM (#41784031) Homepage

    It's an unfair market. They are bringing in workers from across the world, from different markets and economies, to drive down wages. There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Market. They have accomplished this, as Cringley illustrates, by lying and cheating. If they were not permitted to lie to us and to cheat us, our wages would be much higher, their profits would be a tiny bit lower, and the low wage workers would be working in their own countries where they *would* be paid a fair market wage, that is, a wage proportionate to the local standards. This isn't just about fairness, or about the simple purpose of this duplicity is to make our lords so much more rich - it's about national security, *real* national security, not the militaristic crap about being prepared for China to bomb us. To have a United States with citizens that can advance their careers, earn more money, buy homes and educate children, we cannot compete with workers from countries made impoverished by too many babies too quickly added to the local economies. This isn't a game - this is killing our middle class. This is converting the US into a country of bosses and slobs, with the money more and more going to the bosses. Numbers bear this out. It's ain't the debt that's killing us, it's the wealth redistribution to the top tier.

    This is about *your* survival. The wage pressure is always downwards, with pauses to get used to the new lower levels.

    You may have yours, but, so what? A good chunk of us will not have ours, and more importantly, the coming generations will get even less. Even Jerry Pournelle, free market idealist extraordinaire, said himself a few days ago on TWIT that to succeed in the future, people will have to make themselves valuable to those with the money. In other words, make yourself useful to the rich people. Even he's seen that the middle class is rapidly converting into a servant class for the wealthy.

    Curtail the H1Bs. Let the home countries take care of their own workers by building their own industries. That's how markets work. O class workers can come here as much as they like, because the are exceptional, and by that, it is meant *few*.

    Lying to us about a worker "shortage" when there simply isn't one? This isn't about "business", this is about government run by businesses for businesses' purposes, not for the benefit of the actual citizens. Government, under orders from businesses, opened up the H1B program quotas. That is not a free market move, that is a straight-out government-mandated interference in our local markets so that businesses can gain profit and leverage over US citizens. Wages stagnate and fall, H1Bs work without complaint else they be deported. Free market for whom?


  • by Catbeller ( 118204 ) on Friday October 26, 2012 @06:44PM (#41784171) Homepage

    That five million are not programmers and engineers. The H1Bs are. They are imported precisely to counter employment of local graduates and to drive down wages. This is not a supposition. There is more than enough corporate money to pay increasing salaries to college graduates - but they want to keep that money, which they pay to themselves, of course. So they flood the tech market. It's not a huge overall effect, but it is targeted and successful in reducing American salaries. And in case no one notices it, we live in our own country. We'd like to see our wages increase proportionally to the increasing megawealth of our employers' bosses.

    This program was created in 1990, not 1790. It exists only to drive down wages. It exists because the employers are lying about the purpose of the program. There is no worker shortage. There is a shortage of workers who will work for cheap so that the corps can increase profits 20% a quarter.

    That money that is not being paid to us is not being used by us to buy a house, an education, buy goods, or to raise our children. That money is being diverted from us to make rich people far richer. It is helping to inhibit the wage growth of the few occupations left to the American middle class that could conceivably use real, actual free market forces to their advantage. It is shutting the free market down, not advancing it.

"I will make no bargains with terrorist hardware." -- Peter da Silva