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Fri Nov 23, 2012, 07:20 PM

High-skill green cards get lame-duck push in Congress

Source: Mercury News

The lame-duck U.S. Congress is renewing a push to eliminate America's random visa lottery and replace it with a bill favored by thousands of Silicon Valley immigrant workers: one that would "staple" a green card to advanced U.S. degrees in science, engineering and math.

With the election over and immigration reform in the spotlight, House Republicans say they are wasting no time putting the bill up for a Friday vote after a similar measure failed in September.

They are adding a provision allowing the spouses and minor children of legal immigrants to join their family members in the United States instead of waiting for years in their home countries.

Passage of the visa swap would fulfill a goal of reigning House Republicans to gut the annual "diversity visa lottery," which randomly awards 55,000 green cards for permanent residency to people from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States as long as they have a high school degree.

Those green cards would instead go to immigrants with much higher education credentials -- a master's or doctorate in the STEM fields: science, technology, engineering and math.



Read more: http://www.mercurynews.com/science/ci_22054338/high-skill-green-cards-get-lame-duck-push

44 replies, 5440 views

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Reply High-skill green cards get lame-duck push in Congress (Original post)
AlphaCentauri Nov 2012 OP
msongs Nov 2012 #1
harmonicon Nov 2012 #8
JoeyT Nov 2012 #12
harmonicon Nov 2012 #14
pnwmom Nov 2012 #24
exboyfil Nov 2012 #29
harmonicon Nov 2012 #31
AnotherMcIntosh Nov 2012 #9
adieu Nov 2012 #2
pnwmom Nov 2012 #25
Panasonic Nov 2012 #3
AnotherMcIntosh Nov 2012 #10
Selatius Nov 2012 #13
davidwparker Nov 2012 #22
drm604 Nov 2012 #4
limpyhobbler Nov 2012 #5
bluestateguy Nov 2012 #6
sulphurdunn Nov 2012 #7
harmonicon Nov 2012 #11
pscot Nov 2012 #16
harmonicon Nov 2012 #33
pnwmom Nov 2012 #26
harmonicon Nov 2012 #32
pnwmom Nov 2012 #35
harmonicon Nov 2012 #36
pnwmom Nov 2012 #37
harmonicon Nov 2012 #38
pnwmom Nov 2012 #39
harmonicon Nov 2012 #40
pnwmom Nov 2012 #41
harmonicon Nov 2012 #42
pnwmom Nov 2012 #43
harmonicon Nov 2012 #44
MindPilot Nov 2012 #15
athena Nov 2012 #17
amandabeech Nov 2012 #18
athena Nov 2012 #19
amandabeech Nov 2012 #20
amandabeech Nov 2012 #21
pnwmom Nov 2012 #27
6502 Nov 2012 #23
davidpdx Nov 2012 #28
Lightbulb_on Nov 2012 #30
tarheelsunc Nov 2012 #34

Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 07:26 PM

1. one last chance to stab American workers in the back nt

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Response to msongs (Reply #1)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 10:47 PM

8. Oh, bullshit.

This is about who fucking gets to be an American. If being an American was some magical fucking thing, there wouldn't be highly skilled migrants, because all of those jobs would just be done by Americans.

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #8)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 12:02 AM

12. Actually it's about

dropping the hammer on the terrible people that have the nerve to expect to make extra money because they got a college degree.

That's what it's always been about. Whining about not having enough STEM graduates while refusing to hire STEM graduates because people that have to repay thousands upon thousands of dollars in student loans don't want to work for minimum wage.

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Response to JoeyT (Reply #12)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 05:25 AM

14. They may not want to work for minimum wage, but they do.

There are plenty of folks with even advance degrees who just have to take whatever job there is - it's a miracle if there even is one available in their field, no matter what it pays. This is why I don't buy the argument of it being about immigrants driving down wages - that's just something that's said to try to spread racism and/or xenophobia, and it works shockingly well amongst the left.

I also think having a socialist or communist economy would be better than what we have now, but that's not what we have. What we have is a system where employers work out what they need and try to pay as little as possible for it (you can't both blame employers for this while also praising "success" in business in general). I'm all for those employers being able to hire the absolutely best people in the world for those jobs. If greater competition for the job drives down the wage, is that really any different than greater competition in a market driving down prices? Of course it's not, but too many Americans think the national motto is something like "beggars must always be choosers."

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #8)

Sun Nov 25, 2012, 04:32 AM

24. We already have a problem with grad schools in engineering being filled with foreign students

because the grad schools can charge them higher tuitions.

So every US student aiming at grad school has to compete with students from around the world. Then, because many of the graduate degree holders are foreign students, employers insist there aren't enough Americans getting these degrees.

There are PLENTY of Americans who seek these degrees, but many of them get turned down from the grad schools because they're competing against students from around the world, who represent a bigger profit to the universities.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #24)

Sun Nov 25, 2012, 08:43 AM

29. I was going to do my MBA paper on this

back in 1991 after I failed to secure an assistantship for my M.S. in Engineering. I might have my daughter take a look at it as part of her video series on STEM careers. As far as engineering it appears many potential M.S. candidates are lured out by private industry (it is hard to say no to $60K+ and the opportunity to get your MS anyway and have it paid for by your company).

At the University of Iowa if you are on an assistantship you are only charged in state tuition regardless of your origin (the department is paying it anyway). At least this was that way in 1991 when I was looking to go back to graduate school. Changing this to make the departments pay out of state dollars for assistantships might enhance in state residents chances are getting them.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #24)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:14 AM

31. Oh, dear - not competition!

How will the delicate flowers ever survive?

You know what sucks? Getting a doctorate in a foreign country and then having that foreign country treat you like shit, because you aren't a citizen. That's what sucks. Is it "all men are created equal" or "foreigners can fuck right off." I forget.

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Response to msongs (Reply #1)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 10:49 PM

9. x2

 

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 07:29 PM

2. All this does is help corporations

by diluting the high-end skilled workforce with many more available workers. Just pay more money. You're not going to get better workers just because they're from another country. You're just getting cheaper workers, but the net effect is that your products and production times will drop in quality.

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Response to adieu (Reply #2)

Sun Nov 25, 2012, 04:33 AM

25. Yes. College students applying to grad school in stem fields have to compete

for spots against graduates from all over the world.

Then employers complain that not enough Americans get graduate degrees -- but it's not for lack of trying. And it's not for lack of qualifications, either. Most of these schools could fill a class with highly qualified students several times over.

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 07:32 PM

3. I'm sick of this.

 

The H-1B's has literally kicked me out of the IT industry, and I *STILL* get daily emails asking me if I'm still looking, and 90% of them are from recruiters with Indian names (and I know THEY prefer the H-1B's, and lie to the Americans about it) - what I want the Congress to do is revoke all the H visas immediately, and all the people who hold the visa go through an government-mandated internal review to ensure that he qualifies to be in the US, or face immediate deportation, and an American takes his job back - with the correct pay as mandated by the economic factors of what the average IT pay is, plus 10% raise.

That CEO who hired the H1-B's would have to resign effective immediately because he's an idiot and undeserving of any pay, and that CEO is replaced with a CEO that will earn a pay that is tied to worker's maximum wage plus 25%.

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Response to Panasonic (Reply #3)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 10:51 PM

10. Yep. These CEOs who hire H1-Bs are economic traitors.

 

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Response to Panasonic (Reply #3)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 01:31 AM

13. The CEO is just another man in the machine. The chairman of the board is who you're after.

The CEO wouldn't be in such a job if the board of directors and the chairman of the board didn't approve of what he was doing. If he is shipping so many jobs overseas or abusing H1B visas to such an extent that he's basically replacing an American workforce, he's likely doing it with blessing from the board and the chairman of the board, and they represent the shareholders of the company who voted in that board.

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Response to Panasonic (Reply #3)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 10:43 PM

22. +1

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 07:33 PM

4. Great.

And I just got laid off from my current IT job.

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 07:40 PM

5. Good thing Obama is there to veto this. He will protect us.

just kidding.

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 07:49 PM

6. I will support this...

when the unemployment rate for STEM degree holders is about 2%.

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 10:51 PM

11. This is a good step, but it shouldn't just be for STEM workers.

The stupid Tories fucked up their immigration laws, effectively kicking me out of the UK, where I'd like to have worked and actually utilized the education their government had paid for.

Ultimately, I think all borders should be open, but until that happens, I'll speak up for programs that actually give people measurable metrics towards immigration - certainly not a lottery. Someone's life and livelihood shouldn't come down to a game of chance.

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #11)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 12:59 PM

16. It's not a good step. It sucks.

Immigration gives us the growth rate of a 3rd world country. By 2100 there will be a billion "Americans", and 10% of them will have jobs that pay a living wage.

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Response to pscot (Reply #16)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:17 AM

33. Yep, that's the national motto: "fuck you, I've got mine, Jack."

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #11)

Sun Nov 25, 2012, 04:35 AM

26. It's not helpful to US students, who find it too difficult to get accepted into US grad schools

in STEM subjects as it is.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #26)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:16 AM

32. Maybe that should be an impetus to make our compulsory education better.

Don't blame foreigners for our failings.

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #32)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 01:32 PM

35. No, it's NOT because our colleges aren't good enough.

People come from all over the world to attend our universities because they are so good.

There are more than enough QUALIFIED US grads with STEM degrees to fill grad school programs.

But Universities can charge more to students from out of state, and foreign students can come with funding from their own countries -- so the universities fill half their classes with these higher-paying students in order to balance their budgets.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #35)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 06:03 PM

36. So the problem is with our funding for education.

Again, don't blame someone trying to make the best life for themselves for the failures of others.

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #36)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 07:52 PM

37. I'm not blaming the students. Where do you think I did that? I'm blaming govt. policies,

including special visas designed mostly to allow companies to get good employees for lower pay.

It's not an accident that the average salaries of these visa holders are lower than those of citizens.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #37)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 08:54 PM

38. The purpose of competition in the labor market is to lower wages and/or increase productivity.

Of course it's no accident that the increased competition lowers wages.

So long as local labor laws are enforced, I see no reason why someone should have preferential access to a job because of their citizenship by accident of birth.

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #38)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 09:17 PM

39. I strongly believe US citizens should have preferential access to US jobs.

Our unemployment levels will stay high and our salaries will do nothing but drop if US citizens have to compete with everyone around the world for jobs here.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #39)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 11:16 PM

40. Why?

I think political borders are absolutely silly. Do you think people should have different rights because of where they had the fortune or misfortune to be born? I don't. I think all people are equal and should be treated as such.

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #40)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 11:49 PM

41. People DO have different rights because of where they were born. For us to ignore our

citizenship rights while all other countries hold fast to theirs makes no sense. It's not like our unemployed citizens can zip off to other countries to get good jobs -- and they shouldn't have to.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #41)

Wed Nov 28, 2012, 12:08 AM

42. So, because other people do wrong, we should do wrong as well?

"Give us your poor, your weak... no, just kidding. Fuck off."

People everywhere all have the same rights. The extent to which those rights are suppressed is what changes.

In lots of places - the EU and Schengen areas, for instance - people can zip off to other countries to look for jobs. I think it's a positive step.

I can't get a good job in the US, and it's not because of competition from foreigners. There just aren't a lot of jobs in my field anywhere, but I resent that when jobs to come up in the EU, it's legal for employers to discriminate against me because of an accident of my birth.

People should be able to live and work wherever they choose. Until that happens, any ideas we may have about freedom are pure fallacy.

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #42)

Wed Nov 28, 2012, 12:11 AM

43. In the United States people are free to move among states, just as they now

can do in the European Union.

In an ideal world, people could live anywhere in the world they wanted to and everybody would hold hands and sing cumbaya. But we're nowhere close to living in that world.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #43)

Wed Nov 28, 2012, 12:22 PM

44. We're not going to get there if you and others don't want it.

I want it.

Would you make a pro-racist argument because others are still racist? Are you ok with the US still having the death penalty, because Saudi Arabia and China still do? Would it be unfair for us to have equal pay for women, because other countries don't? We don't want a couple migrating here and - heaven forbid - BOTH getting jobs. That would be like a double-whammy, huh?

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 10:06 AM

15. Who pays the tuition for those "advanced US degrees"?

And are US students afforded the same opportunities to pursue the same degrees?

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Response to MindPilot (Reply #15)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 02:29 PM

17. Oh, no they're not.

The government and universities are all paying the tuition of those evil foreign students, and turning down good American students. It's all a big, evil conspiracy. // Cue scary music.

I admire your brilliance. Allow foreign students (the best in their countries, by the way) to major in fields like math, physics, engineering, and computer science at the best American universities, then refuse them green cards so that they can take their knowledge, skills, and training back to their countries rather than using them to benefit the U.S. And you think that somehow that will increase your chances of getting a good job. Dream on.

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Response to athena (Reply #17)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 03:00 PM

18. Do you by any chance have a dog in this hunt? n/t

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Response to amandabeech (Reply #18)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 03:11 PM

19. Expressing an opinion is now suspect?

I am a former scientist who knows something about the types of people who study hard sciences in college. Of course, that makes my view invalid. We must only pay attention to the views of people who know nothing about what they are saying.

In fact, I am not the only one who feels this way. Check out Fareed Zakaria's segment on it. I don't always agree with him, but this one is worth watching.
http://globalpublicsquare.blogs.cnn.com/2012/06/06/the-gps-roadmap-for-making-immigration-work/

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Response to athena (Reply #19)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 03:25 PM

20. No, but if you have benefited from our nation's universities admission of many

foreign students, your opinion would likely be informed by your circumstances.

Similarly, Mr. Zakaria's circumstances inform his opinions.

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Response to athena (Reply #19)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 05:33 PM

21. Response? n/t

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Response to athena (Reply #17)

Sun Nov 25, 2012, 04:41 AM

27. They SHOULD be taking back their experience to their home countries, which need them more than we do

And our US students need jobs. It's win-win.

You don't understand that there are more qualified US STEM BS's who want grad school than spaces for them -- in large part due to the many foreign students.

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Sun Nov 25, 2012, 04:19 AM

23. I'd given up quite a while ago...

... I am in IT over here now (Japan).

The only reason the crew I'm on even has a job is that the corp hasn't YET figured out how to break the part we work on into pieces that could be outsourced to India with the rest of the system.

The entire crew is about 100-200 people total... all of us are actually part of outsource firms leased by the corp. In the group of about 100 that I am a part of, there are about 8-10 actually employees of the corp.

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Sun Nov 25, 2012, 07:18 AM

28. I guess that's why they call it a "lame duck" congress

They are lame.

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Sun Nov 25, 2012, 09:27 AM

30. As someone who has experience with the immigration system...

 

... I can assure you it is cumbersome and broken.

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Response to AlphaCentauri (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:38 AM

34. Stuff like this really pisses me off.

They are adding a provision allowing the spouses and minor children of legal immigrants to join their family members in the United States instead of waiting for years in their home countries.


Why don't they add this provision for foreign spouses of CITIZENS?

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