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White House Is Planning To Let More Foreign Entrepreneurs Work In the US (recode.net) 131

Peter Hudson writes from a report via Recode: "After failing to get Congress to pass a 'startup visa' as part of broad immigration reform, the Obama administration is moving ahead with an alternative that would allow overseas entrepreneurs to live in the U.S. for up to five years to help build a company," reports Recode. "Already speaking out in favor of the new rules is PayPal co-founder Max Levchin: 'I believe that the most promising entrepreneurs from around the world should have the same opportunity I had -- the chance to deliver on their potential, here in America.' Levchin moved to the U.S. from the Soviet Union in 1991." There are three conditions that need to be met in order to be eligible to work in the U.S. under the new rule: the foreigner would have to own at least 15 percent of a U.S.-based startup, the foreigner would need to have a central role in the startup's operations, and the startup would need to have "potential for rapid business growth and job creation." The third requirement could be met by having at least $100,000 in government grants or $345,000 invested from U.S. venture investors. "Under [the International Entrepreneur Rule (PDF)] being formally proposed on Friday, the Department of Homeland Security would be empowered to use its existing authority to allow entrepreneurs to legally work in the country for two years, possibly followed by a one-time three-year extension," reports Recode. "While the public will have 45 days to comment, the rules aren't subject to congressional approval."
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White House Is Planning To Let More Foreign Entrepreneurs Work In the US

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  • by guruevi ( 827432 ) <evi@@@evcircuits...com> on Saturday August 27, 2016 @08:42AM (#52780695) Homepage

    "the rules aren't subject to congressional approval" - a lot of "laws" have passed since Bush onwards that are no longer subject to congressional approval. They're just a source of comedic entertainment any other time, why do we even have congress or a judiciary for that matter? It didn't pass congress properly, let's just make it a presidential order.

    If anything, you should vote for Trump because he's too stupid to realize he can pull legalistic shit like this, perhaps "the people" can restore some of the balance and take it away from the attorneys-in-charge. That or Gary Johnson/Jill Stein - may not be ideal but anything is better than an extension of these Bush-Obama policies.

    Either way, I'm sure this won't be abused. Come to the US, get $500k in funds, you just have to promise us to create some jobs in the next 5 years even though our own startups fail 90% of the time this won't be a problem for you. If anything, give ANY startup in the US access to the same funds. I sure could use them, I'm an immigrant even.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by geek ( 5680 )

      If anything, you should vote for Trump because he's too stupid

      Yes he's become a billionaire and stayed one for 40 years because he's "stupid." You fucking leftists need a new line. Calling everyone you disagree with stupid has worn itself out. You're just a tired fucking meme at this point.

      • Trump is a leftist (relatively speaking); this is all an act... and you fell for it, moron.
        • I always laugh at ppl like you. You will claim that far right fascists are actually liberal. For example, YOU have called W liberal. Yet, since the great depression, he is considered the most conservative president by historical ranking. Much more so than even reagan. Basically, you have to go back to Harding and Coolidge to get presidents that conservative. And now, you claim that another far right fascists like trump is a liberal even though his policies are further right than Coolidge and harding. Amazin
      • by Anonymous Coward

        Trump was born into a wealthy family, used his father's name to garner investment, inherited a ton of cash and he would actually be worth billions more had he invested in index funds [yahoo.com]. But hey facts smatchs :)

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Wait, they are giving them money too? I have a legit startup I want to fund and start, without selling my soul or controlling interest.. WTF I am a citizen of this country... WTF is wrong with this world...

      • by Anonymous Coward

        If you happen to be a white man, be careful they don't take away your startup to give to some minority or immigrant. "You didn't build that!"

    • A nation with no laws is no longer a nation.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      It was already approved by congress in 2014. The executive part was missing, legislative was in place already. Sigh...

    • I agree that having THIS CONgress is worthless. Few of them , esp in the GOP have done a fucking thing. Hopefully most other ppl are more intelligent than you and know that these last 2 CONgress are in official history as America's worst congresses. Yes, historian rank them as having accomplished the least even when we need them so badly. They have submitted the fewest number of bills. Hopefully, the GOP loss BOTH houses of CONgress and the GOP then breaks up.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    For sale for about $345k plus whatever the 'service change' from any venture firm is; or if your prior donations got you some 100k in gov. grant goodies.

    • by nbauman ( 624611 )

      You could open a restaurant, right?

      • by ccguy ( 1116865 )
        Yes. But this is _nothing different_ to the already existing E-2 visa which will allow you to open a business (any business) in the US and leave here 3 or 5 years (depending on however processes your visa at the embassy) and can be extended indefinitely.

        You need to put money at risk (a substantial sum, around $100,000 is recommended by most lawyers) before getting the visa but other than that if the business plan is sound it's likely to get approved.

        Yes, it can be used to open a restaurant. That's fine,
        • by nbauman ( 624611 )

          How could this possibly hurt the US economy or its workers? It's just a new business, with foreign money on the line, that must hire people in order to have the visa extended.

          Since you ask --

          The Wall Street Journal did a story after the Oakland, California race riots, to try to find the root causes of the riots.

          A Korean grocery store owner made the news at the time because he and his relatives protected his store with shotguns.

          The WSJ reported that he had been an officer in the Korean army. That's why they thought of defending their store with guns. (From other stories in the WSJ and elsewhere, I read that the Korean army at that time was particularly corrupt, in terms of giving

        • allow you to open a business (any business) in the US and leave here 3 or 5 years

          Seems like a stupid idea. If I opened a business I'd rather be as close as possible in the initial phase rather than fucking off somewhere else.

    • by hey! ( 33014 )

      Well, that's nothing new. Rich people have always been welcome to settle anywhere they want. In the past there have been racial quotas in US immigration policy, but even those were relaxed for people who could demonstrate they have money (e.g. Chinese merchants).

      • One of the reasons for having an immigration policy is so that the government-provided services don't get overwhelmed, as seems to be a major fear in Europe with the Syrian refugees. To that end, only a certain number of immigrants are allowed in, to reduce the shock to those services. A wealthy foreigner is less likely to have a large burden on those services, and by spending money in the US and paying taxes to the US governments, may even contribute more than they cost.

        It's not fair, and it assumes a larg

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 27, 2016 @08:56AM (#52780739)
    President can't make laws so he just makes rules?

    That's some beyond Andrew Jackson level action there.

    This United States is a government of separate powers. Congress, the opposite of progress, makes the laws. The Supreme Court, usually by not doing anything, judges the laws. And the President? That's just a certain civil servant in the bureaucracy that implements the laws. Lots of responsibility and has to approve anything coming out of Congress. But Congress can still override him if they can quit bickering for 10 minutes about the plushness of their revolving doors.

    People need to stop thinking the US President is some kind of King who makes, judges and tasks the laws of the land. The first person who needs to remember this basic civics lesson is the President himself.

    Stop writing laws through treaties and directives. The next administration may not be so kind to your interests once you are an ex-President.

    But as long as I'm fantasizing about a working government I might as well ask that Congress stop passing laws written by lobbyists and the ultra rich to protect their money.

    • The legislature already passed the laws granting power to the Executive branch. Those laws were written loosely enough that the Executive branch can determine their own policies, and that's what's happening here.

    • President can't make laws so he just makes rules?

      Sounds like what Hillary has said she'll do about gun control if elected. If Congress won't give her what she wants, well, she'll do it with Executive Orders....

      • President can't make laws so he just makes rules?

        Sounds like what Hillary has said she'll do about gun control if elected. If Congress won't give her what she wants, well, she'll do it with Executive Orders....

        ...well then, your problem isn't with Hillary. It's with executive orders... However I'd say "be careful what you wish for" probably applies here.

      • Executive orders should only apply to employees of the US government. They should not be a back door to passing laws.
  • by swb ( 14022 ) on Saturday August 27, 2016 @09:01AM (#52780753)

    I'm curious how this works now for foreign owners of business assets.

    Are there rules in place now that prevent foreign investors from owning equity stakes in US companies (outside of sectors with existing statutory limits)?

    If a foreign investor owns an equity stake in a US company, are they prevented from coming to the US for business purposes? Do they need a special visa? Are there limits on how long they can stay to participate in this business under current rules?

    This proposal seems like a gold mine of loopholes that would seem to allow for further bulk import of workers. What's to prevent Tata from creating an XYZ Consultancy and selling the minimum share of the company to workers it wants to import? It's not hard to imagine all kinds of games they could play "loaning" the equity investment funds to the worker in India so that they appear in the US as legitimate stakeholders who have made their own investments.

    • by Pulzar ( 81031 ) on Saturday August 27, 2016 @10:32AM (#52781051)

      Are there rules in place now that prevent foreign investors from owning equity stakes in US companies (outside of sectors with existing statutory limits)?

      No, you can invest as much as you want, but you can't work in US. That's the difference. Entrepreneurs want to start a company and do the work, and not simply invest in it.

      A funny (and common, especially among Canadians who have summer homes in Florida) example -- you can buy a house in US and rent it out and earn money from it. But, you can't come over and do any maintenance work on your rental property -- you have to pay someone to do it.

      Obviously, it's hard to enforce, but that's the law.

      • by swb ( 14022 )

        Does this stop the head of Volkswagen from traveling to the US to work-related meetings with leaders of Volkswagen US?

        • by Pulzar ( 81031 )

          Does this stop the head of Volkswagen from traveling to the US to work-related meetings with leaders of Volkswagen US?

          No, meetings are fine. Any business-related work in US is fine, as long as you're not getting paid by a US company for it. So, going to meetings, conferences, training, etc. is all fine. There are some grey areas when you work for a foreign subsidiary of a US company and you're staying for a week or longer at the US office... then it's often up to the security officer at the border to determ

    • by Peter Hudson ( 3717535 ) on Saturday August 27, 2016 @01:05PM (#52781531)
      The process right now for entrepreneurs coming to the US is reasonably straight forward, but still requires a fair amount of paperwork. I'm a Canadian entrepreneur who recently moved to the Bay Area to work on my startup and I'm in the US on an L-1A VISA. The process wasn't too hard, but it was still about about 3 weeks worth of preparing documentation for US Immigration. I documented the entire process of getting an L-1A VISA here: https://www.startupgrind.com/b... [startupgrind.com]
  • by fluffernutter ( 1411889 ) on Saturday August 27, 2016 @09:11AM (#52780777)
    I'm all for bringing the talent to the US. If they have what it takes to start a successful company then fine, but their companies should employ local labor once started.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      I'm all for bringing the talent to the US. If they have what it takes to start a successful company then fine, but their companies should employ local labor once started.

      You have the naiveté of a child.

      The labor will be sourced where the costs are lowest.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Then there is no more America. Everything we have been told to respect about it has been sold.
        • by DogDude ( 805747 )
          Speak for yourself. I don't know what stories you were told that you're sad about not being true, but the US is largely the same as it has been for longer than you've been alive.
          • Early in my life corporations had to make do with talent that was available to them domestically, or deal with complicated immigration laws. Now it seems if they don't like the wages domestic workers are asking all they have to do is skip over to a third world country and tap a few people on the shoulder. If you think this doesn't sacrifice America's standing as a first world country as the years go on then you're not even worth responding to. We are already seeing increased violence as a result. Right
    • I'm all for bringing the talent to the US. If they have what it takes to start a successful company then fine, but their companies should employ local labor once started.

      Why should Americans have to sacrifice their own opportunities for this?

      And as others have pointed out, even voting for your congressperson wouldn't help.

      One wonders what voting is for, or what benefit we get from paying taxes.

      • Well more companies hiring Americans is a good thing. If these more companies do nothing but ship money overseas then they are nothing but leaches.
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          Well more companies hiring Americans is a good thing. If these more companies do nothing but ship money overseas then they are nothing but leaches.

          So what you're saying is, Americans can't be wealth builders any more, yes?

          We'll be the worker class, while everyone else in the world comes in and builds wealth for themselves.

          While there is a "slim positive view" you can put on the situation, the fact remains that it gives away opportunity to foreign people at the expense of Americans.

          • I didn't see anywhere in here that said Americans *couldn't* start a company. They'll just have to compete harder for it.

            By the way, I find it kind of funny that I'm on this side of the conversation. Usually I am about protectionism.
            • by Pulzar ( 81031 )

              By the way, I find it kind of funny that I'm on this side of the conversation. Usually I am about protectionism.

              You'll always find the most extreme views online. It's hard to support either side in these kinds of arguments, neither is willing to accept a bit of common sense.

        • by ccguy ( 1116865 )

          Well more companies hiring Americans is a good thing. If these more companies do nothing but ship money overseas then they are nothing but leaches.

          Do you realize that the wealthier _American_ companies keep their stash of money overseas to avoid paying U.S. taxes?

  • Same difference (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Archtech ( 159117 ) on Saturday August 27, 2016 @09:29AM (#52780837)

    "...the Obama administration is moving ahead with an alternative that would allow overseas entrepreneurs to live in the U.S. for up to five years to help build a company..."

    After which time they can outsource it to the Far East like normal American entrepreneurs. Here today, gone tomorrow! Thanks to the miracle of globalization.

    • in the meantime. I'm all for curtailing the H1-B program. Screw that, just eliminate it. But assuming this program isn't yet another back door into more H1-Bs (e.g. cheap labor for mega corps) why wouldn't we want foreigners bringing lots and lots of capital into our country. $100-$350k seems too low though. Just getting into a McDonald's franchise starts at over $1 mil. I don't think you could get a subway for that. Also, given that 90% of businesses fail in 5 years what do we do with them when they fail?
  • It seems to me the powers are creating a situation where you will have to make a certain level of wealth to live in the US. Everyone who is wealthy and successful in other countries will come here. If you can't make it here, you and your family will end up in a third world country to fight for the scraps.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    We'll just make the foreign workers "entrepreneurs", help them get a visa, and hire their "business" as a contractor. Genius. IBM's lobbyists are getting a bonus this quarter!

    • they'd have to be rocking some capital (summary says $100k in gov't grants or $350k of their own money). This almost sounds like a really expensive way to buy yourself into America. Still, encouraging folks with resources to immigrate really is a good thing. It's the code monkeys I'd like to exclude.
      • by vovin ( 12759 )

        The *current* E2 requirement is basically 1 Million USD investment at risk and Documentation of 10 jobs created by said investment.

        Even the old Canada (similar system) has bumped from a pathetic 100k upto 500k to 1M, due to abuses. They also have a problem where
        immigrants can show a lesser amount when settling in Toronto ... but the majority get in and immediately relocate to Vancouver.
        If you have been to both cities you know why :-)

        So this is really a seems to be step backwards in terms of helping ensuring

  • Subcontrator (Score:4, Insightful)

    by BradMajors ( 995624 ) on Saturday August 27, 2016 @10:16AM (#52781009)

    Paying a subcontractor $345,000 for 5 years of work is undercutting American wage rates.

  • by walterbyrd ( 182728 ) on Saturday August 27, 2016 @11:12AM (#52781173)

    Mostly Indians who hire only Indian visa workers. They call themselves "technology companies" and brag about all the jobs they create.

    • by ccguy ( 1116865 )

      Mostly Indians who hire only Indian visa workers. They call themselves "technology companies" and brag about all the jobs they create.

      How is this representative of the many (and I mean many) companies that are started by foreigners that have zero intention of hiring nothing but the best they can afford?

    • http://www.petition2congress.c... [petition2congress.com]

  • How many of these results in citizens being hired versus non-citizens? Not enough.

    If the guest worker programs are any guide, these individuals would just hire from likeminded non-citizens.

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