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Good luck with that in November

Glenn and Tom have some pretty good roundups on Obama's recent campaign cock-up. I'd have expected this kind of insulting, bone-headed condescension from Michelle, but am a bit surprised that it came from Barack himself.

The Democratic success in 2006 was due in large part to making the party more salable to heartland America. Well, so much for that. This kind of elitist paternalism, so carefully avoided in the mid-term campaign, won't help him make inroads into red America.

I guess I can go ahead and start planning the menu for my John McCain inauguration party. I'm thinking maybe something with a Southwestern motif.


from what i can understand...

This is basically what BO says in Indiana:

-Rural white people are frustrated (cynical/skeptical) by government's failures so they fight to what they know (guns and god), which makes them reluctant to believe in someone who isn't cynical like them.

But in San Fran his attitude is:

-rural white people are "bitter" by gov's failures so they "CLING" to God and guns and look warily at Mexicans, Muslims, and black folk (y'know typical white people)

Obviously he wouldn't say this in Indiana! I guess these people are either 'frustrated' or 'racist', depending on how ready you are for his message.

Well, you can see why Barack Obama seems like the candidate the GOP would want to run against in November.

A guy they can link to the likes of Jeremiah Wright, James Meeks, the new Black Panther Party, Bill Ayers, with a wife who, at times, sounds a lot like Jeremiah Wright, herself, and who tends to say idiotic things like insinuating that folks who don't agree with him on opposing individual rights, like gun-ownership and freedom of religion are "frustrated, cynical racists."

Obama seems a lot like that Col. Jessup (Jack Nicholson) character in A Few Good Men. He seems like he WANTS to say what he really feels, like he wants to vent his anti-white, anti-American venom, he just needs a little goading to do it.

I'm betting/hoping he cracks before September...but safely AFTER the Democratic Convention.

I grew up in small-town Pennsylvania (eastern/central anthracite coal region), and far from being out of touch and elitist, he pretty much nails the pervasive cracker mentality of the area. It goes way beyond the Hazleton, anti-immigration controversy ( http://www.standardspeaker.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=7181&Itemid=2 ), to the point where I'm quite certain that a sizeable majority of my former neighbors would never, under any circumstances, vote for a minority candidate. For many decades a lot of these towns have not been able to get off their collective asses, so there is plenty of pent-up demand for scapegoats. People like me who don't share that point of view by and large move away.

Whoa there, Benny!

As, I'm sure we all know, there is no connection between the crime of ILLEGAL immigration, which is not only a criminal act, but one that directly and profoundly impacts ALL American wage rates in a negative way and "IMMIGRATION," which implies LEGAL IMMIGRATION, which when regulated and controlled can be very positive.

For instance, the H-1B Visas address our major problem of Structural Unemployment (too few Americans trained to do some of the jobs that need to get done), while creating, on average six new American jobs per H-1B Visa.

While there are certainly "nativists" and outright "racial bigots" involved in the demagoguery over ILLEGAL immigration, but they're not found among the 74% of Americans who outrightly oppose any and all ILLEGAL immigration, they are found exclusively among the ranks of those who oppose the common language (English), borders and culture (the foundation of America remains a European-based culture), out of a virulently anti-European bigotry.

The misguided often ask, "Can a white who finds many aspects of our European-based culture to be vile, actually be racist simply because of that?"

The answer is that indeed anyone can be an anti-white or anti-European bigot merely by believing such things as "European culture is responsible for bringing a lot of negative things into the world."

It's clear that those sentiments are bigoted, but standing up in defense of "the rule of law," certainly ISN'T.

I guess I can go ahead and start planning the menu for my John McCain inauguration party.

Well, I would not plan an expensive party and I would not put down any deposit if I were you Barry. Trust me on that.

The fact remains that what Obama said is 100% accurate and insightful. The attempts to swiftboat him will not work. No matter how desperately Hillary is trying to bring him down, she can not. I believe this will backfire on her among democrats within a few days. As for McCain, he has no chance. He is not electable. He will lose hands down, even if Hillary is the nominee. In my opinion, he should be looking for a retirement place at his age. Somewhere with warm weather. Maybe Iraq? Why not, he seems to love that place. After all, he believes that we should stay there for 100 years.

I don't know, any time I've been in the Pennsylvania heartland between Pittsburgh and Pennsy, it's redneck/hick country--like much of middle America--rah-rah with the religion, rah-rah with the guns and xenophobic to the max.

kk, that's been my experience too, but it doesn't make Obama's comments any less insulting. No one likes be told that their deeply held beliefs are merely the by-product of losing a manufacturing job.

Sure, the church aspect of his comments may have been off base...but I also see it as being all part of an overall package of isolation within one's own narrow world and the resulting prejudices that may accompany it.
And it's not just Pennsy. Hell, there's parts of NJ like that as well.

fred when you say

"...but I also see it as being all part of an overall package of isolation within one's own narrow world and the resulting prejudices that may accompany it."

you're referring to Barack Obama right?

"...like much of middle America - rah-rah with the religion, rah-rah with the guns and xenophobic to the max." (Fred)

I don't get it Fred, somehow you manage to make that sound like a bad thing.

America could do well with a dash more xenophobia, a LOT MORE passion over the foundation of self-ownership - the inalienable right of all free people to violent self-defense.

You know what's really sad?

Thousands of naive College kids today, lying down for 3 minutes (the amount of time it allegedly took Seng-Hui Cho to buy the gun he used to kill 32 students) last year.

You COULD (if one where so inclined) make tons of explosives, things that could take out a decent part of a tightly packed neighborhood (like in an urban area) with regular household items - like vaseline and pottasium chlorate (since K2SO4 isn't the easiest thing to get, you can get a thing called Solidox which is used for welding) at any hardware store, or potassium permanganate and sugar (the finer the granules, the better the explosive potential), or you could make any explosive an incindiary by adding some "homemade Napalm," by simply stirring gasoline with a half volume of generic soap shards (soap with no added perfume or chemicals). There are a lot more such concoctions (chlorine (bleach) and alcohol, for instance) and what's worse is, those who are really intent on doing harm either already know them, or can access the information in a matter of seconds.

As ugly a reality as it is, there's simply no real way to keep people hell bent on doing real harm from doing real harm!

Freedom really comes down to you being your own first line of defense.

Don't put your faith in the cops or the Fire Department, we're 12 to 40 minutes out, depending onthe agency &/or the Unit.

We'll arrive to pretty much "clean up the mess."

Idiot boy JMK sez, "For instance, the H-1B Visas address our major problem of Structural Unemployment (too few Americans trained to do some of the jobs that need to get done), while creating, on average six new American jobs per H-1B Visa."

OK JMK, post the PROOF that every H1B visa job creates SIX new American jobs. Don't duck it. Let's see the proof.

You might start by explaining how allowing OVER A MILLION H1B workers (under BUSH) created SIX MILLION NEW IT JOBS ... when in reality it KILLED OFF the entire software industry in the United States and gave it over to India.

I think it would be more fair to say that FOR EVERY H1B VISA WE LOSE SIX AMERICAN JOBS! We sure as hell lose one. And when whole industries disappear and the future, which was surely ours, becomes India's ... well, six million high paying professional jobs lost is probably VERY conservative, don't you think?

Stop lying, you union-coddled faux-conservative ass.

"OK JMK, post the PROOF that H1B visa jobs create SIX new American jobs."
(Barely Hanging)

Ummmm, OK:

Well, there's this:

"when companies were reducing their hiring numbers, their applications for H-1B visas also dropped off, which NFAP contends is a sign that companies don't seek out H-1B workers to save money on wages. If cheap labor were really the goal of H-1B participation, then the number of requests for those workers should have gone up during such "hard times," NFAP argues.

"Those findings, coupled with a survey of 27 technology companies about their H-1B practices, prompted NFAP to conclude that foreign-born professionals are being hired to complement, not displace, American workers.

"Furthermore, an "artificially low limit" that Congress imposes on H-1B visas actually hurts American workers by sending jobs overseas, NFAP contends. Sixty-five percent of the companies that participated in its survey said insufficient H-1Bs caused them to hire more people in subsidiaries outside the United States--or simply to outsource work to firms abroad.

"H-1B visas, of course, allow companies to bring foreign workers with at least a bachelor's degree in their area of specialty onboard for up to six years."


And this:
"For every H-1B position requested, tech companies listed on the S&P 500 stock index increased their employment by five workers in an analysis of 2002 to 2005, according to astudyby the National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP).

For tech firms with fewer than 5,000 employees, each H-1B request corresponded with an average increase of 7.5 workers, the group said."

"The survey results indicate that when H-1B visa restrictions block cutting-edge companies from hiring foreign nationals in America, companies are likely to place more of their human resources outside the United States."

"Urging the US Congress to let more foreign engineers work in the US as immigration restrictions were forcing US high-tech firms to outsource jobs overseas, Bill Gates too made the point that the current cap of 65,000 H-1B visas aimed at highly skilled professionals "is arbitrarily set and bears no relation to the US economy's demand for skilled professionals".


And this:

"Bill Gates appeared before Congress again last week to make a simple point to simpler pols: The ridiculously low annual cap on H-1B visas for foreign professionals is undermining the ability of U.S. companies to compete in a global marketplace.

"Congress's failure to pass high-skill immigration reform has exacerbated an already grave situation," said the Microsoft chairman. "The current base cap of 65,000 H-1B visas is arbitrarily set and bears no relation to the U.S. economy's demand for skilled workers."

"The Labor Department projects that by 2014 there will be more than two million job openings in science, technology, engineering and math fields. But the number of Americans graduating with degrees in those disciplines is falling. Meanwhile, visa quotas make it increasingly difficult for U.S. companies to hire foreign-born graduates of our own universities. Last year, as in prior years, the supply of H-1B visas was exhausted on the first day petitions could be filed.

"Today, knowledge and expertise are the essential raw materials that companies and countries need in order to be competitive," said Mr. Gates. "We live in an economy that depends on the ability of innovative companies to attract and retain the very best talent, regardless of nationality or citizenship."

"Lest you think Microsoft and other companies are making this stuff up, we direct you to two recent studies published by the National Foundation for American Policy. The first, entitled "Talent Search," found that major U.S. technology companies average more than 470 job openings for skilled positions, while defense companies average more than 1,200 such openings. In all, more than 140,000 skilled job openings are available today in the S&P 500 companies.

"The second study, "H-1B Visas and Job Creation," reports the results of a regression analysis of H-1B filings and employment at U.S. tech companies. The objective was to determine if hiring foreign nationals harms the job prospects of Americans -- a common claim of protectionists. In fact, the study found a positive association between H-1B visa requests and the percentage change in total employment.

"Among S&P 500 firms, "the data show that for every H-1B position requested, U.S. technology companies increased employment by 5 workers," according to the study. And "for technology firms with fewer than 5,000 employees, each H-1B position requested in labor condition applications was associated with an increase of employment of 7.5 workers." Far from stealing jobs from Americans, skilled immigrants expand the economic pie.

"Mr. Gates said his software company exemplifies this phenomenon. "Microsoft has found that for every H-1B hire we make, we add on average four additional employees to support them in various capacities," he told lawmakers. "If we increase the number of H-1B visas that are available to U.S. companies, employment of U.S. nationals would likely grow as well."

"The preponderance of evidence continues to show that businesses are having difficulty filling skilled positions in the U.S. By blocking their access to foreign talent, Congress isn't protecting U.S. jobs but is providing incentives to outsource. If lawmakers can't bring themselves to eliminate the H-1B visa cap, they might at least raise it to a level that doesn't handicap U.S. companies."


I tried to look for articles on the other side, but apparently those Luddites haven't invented the pen yet.

If someone has better luck finding a reasonable and passioned response to Bill Gates and the WSJ, I'd happily stand corrected on the Luddite score, although I don't consider the arguments of either Lou Dobbs or Pat Buchanan (although I admire both of them) sufficiently reasonable at this juncture.

They're both high on passion and low on rationality on this score.

Good response ... unfortunately, all lies.

Did Bill Gates tell a big fat fib regarding what Microsoft pays the holders of H-1B visas while in Washington last year lobbying lawmakers and cajoling journalists for looser immigration policies?

And did David Broder, the prominent Washington political columnist, pass that fib along to his readers without so much as a raised eyebrow?

Both would appear to be the case, at least based on an analysis provided by offshoring critic Robert Oak and posted yesterday to a pair of popular political blogs.

Broder reported that Gates told him H1-B hires start at about $100,000 a year. The key paragraph:

As Gates said, these are highly paid, highly qualified individuals. Salaries for these jobs at Microsoft start at about $100,000 a year. Their counterparts can be hired more cheaply in China or India, he said, but Microsoft does 85 percent of its research and development work in the United States because it wants its computer scientists interacting directly with its program managers and its marketing people on its own campus.

And here's the meat of what Oak provided, based on an analysis of green-card applications:

Unfortunately for Bill Gates, when a corporation sponsors a green card, they must publish the actual salary along with the application.

From the graph above and the table below, only 3.3%, or 40 employees, of the 1,202 total green card applications submitted by Microsoft had wages above $100k.

In fact, more applications, 8.3%, or 92 employees, were paid salaries below $60k. Most of the jobs titles of the 1,202 applications were Software Engineer, an entry level job indicator.

The median salary for all was $71k, well below the $100k that Bill Gates touted in his claim of a great shortage of "talent" in America (read cheap, controllable and young).

Wow, whadya know! The truth corredsponds exactly to my personal experience of interviewing with Microsoft and being offered $20k less than what I am already making!

Cheap labor. Replacing American workers. Training foreigners using the knowledge of American workers so that they can go home and perform the job even cheaper!

You are either a liar or a moron, JMK. Ah hell, haven't you proven over and over that you are both?

By the way,

Cheap labor? Oh yeah, and where are the 6 jobs for Americans? Hmmm, don't see those. Do you see where Microsoft hired 6 Americans for each foreigner?


It looks as though you've lost track of your own argument yourself.

See, THIS discussion is NOT about pay rates, it's about the fact that H-1B Visas creating MORE American jobs!

See, here's what I responded to;

"OK JMK, post the PROOF that H1B visa jobs create SIX new American jobs." (Barely Hanging)

I responded to THAT with THIS:

"For every H-1B position requested, tech companies listed on the S&P 500 stock index increased their employment by five workers in an analysis of 2002 to 2005, according to astudyby the National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP).

"For tech firms with fewer than 5,000 employees, each H-1B request corresponded with an average increase of 7.5 workers, the group said."

"The survey results indicate that when H-1B visa restrictions block cutting-edge companies from hiring foreign nationals in America, companies are likely to place more of their human resources outside the United States."


As to starting salaries, the EXACT phrase Bill Gates used was "these positions pay up to $100,000/year."

A software engineer is a college degree, no advanced degrees required for that position.

By like token, the NYPD requires a college education and starting pay there is a mere $25,000/year!

Top pay for a NYPD cop with OT is about $100,000/year (actually, a little less). I think software engineers is a fine profession, mighty fine, but come on, it's not like being a lawyer or a physician or even a Civil engineer.

As far as I can see, it's probably about on par with the position of CPA, perhaps not as valuable in the overall scheme of things.

Yes, a dork, like yourself would like to see software engineers paid $200K/year and you'd imagine yourself among those who'd be sought for a position like that, despite your obvious verbal and logical shortcomings.

H-1Bs have been used in many, MANY fields, including accounting. My wife works in a Big Four firm and they have many H-1B Visa accountants...and the pay for CPAs has not gone down at all over the past decade.

To recap; (1) you've now ceded the point on H-1B Visas creating more American jobs and (2) you've mischaracterized Gates' comments by leaving out a key phrase (up to).

Would you like to change the subject....again?

It mightn't help, but it couldn't hurt!


I didn't know you were a socialist, JMK!

Sounds like you are saying that, DESPITE SUPPLY AND DEMAND, software engineers are not WORTH $100K a year.

Wait JMK, what happened to the FREE MARKET??? What happened to SUPPLY SIDE???

If software engineering isn't worth $100K, then let the market decide by NOT EMPLOYING more software engineers ... either that, or raise the salary.

You poor fucking socialist. Look at socialist JMK deciding what software engineers DESERVE compared to CPAs.

Sad. You've blown your cover. You are just a Corporatist fuckwad.

Actually, Gates said "over $100,000". Once again, you are nothing but a goddamned liar. Anyone can check the congressional record, dumbass.

So JMK, have you decided what every career DESERVES in salary? I mean, corporations should be able to purchase employees at a set and stable price. These employees will then consume their corporate products and services as THE MARKET DICTATES without recourse to non-tariffed foreign goods, right?

Once again, you are a socialist, pure and simple. You are a corporatist stooge. You are a traitor who doesn't believe in America, who in fact hates America and the American worker.

Freedom for corporations only, right JMK? Labor is paid by what you think they DESERVE, but corporate profits are unlimited by anything other than your imaginary "supply and demand" that you believe currently applies to the price of gasoline, right stupid?

Did I cede the point that H1B visas create more American jobs? Hmmm, let's take Microsoft for example. That's fair, don't you think?

Since they started hiring as many foreign workers and opening up shop overseas to higher yet more foreign workers and building outside the U.S. to employ even more foreign workers, have they hired five times as many American workers?

Sadly, no. In fact, the American software engineer has simply been replaced, for 30% less than the going rate.

But certainly Microsoft has creates tons of call center jobs! Um, no. They are all in India.

Yeah, but Microsoft has to package and wrap up the boxes their software is packaged in, right! Sorry son, not in America.

It's just a lie, JMK, and you actually know it. If you weren't a coddled little union boy sucking on the public teat, if you were a real man who could gain employment in the real world, you would understand.

Tsk, tsk.

You've NEVER heard me tout "the Free Market."

I once DID

No, I've loooong supported the Supply Side policies that highly regulate and control both business and labor.

I've come to support that system reluctantly because it delivers maximum prosperity and maximum economic stability despite a relatively high tax burden (the current U.S. tax burden is one of the highest in the industrialized world), heavy regulation of BOTH industry and labor and a corresponding loss of individual Liberty.

Bottomline Supply Side policies CAN work and CAN provide maximum prosperity to the greatest number of people.

Not much good can be said of Keynesian policies.

Since we've allowed the government to regulate industry to an incredible detail, it stands to reason that we must also allow government to similarly regulate labor.

Right now there is huge "structural unemployment" (jobs going begging in areas where too few Americans are trained for them) and H-1B Visas is one way government has sought to deal with the very serious (potentially disastrous) problem of structural unemployment.

I know this is ridiculous, but let's say that you (Barely Hanging) were trained as software engineer (I know, I'm laughing too), you COULD be a brilliant software engineer (yes, I've even given you another brain in this imaginary scenario), but if you still had this inability to commmunicate your ideas clearly and still lacked the basic requisite "people skills," you could easily see why an eager young software engineer from say Dubai, may appear a far more accessible option, right?

The fact is that there aren't enough trained software engineers in America to stock the world's largest technology-based community.

The dot.com bust saw a brief retrenching in America's technology fields, but by 2002 the re-hiring began and by 2005 almost all those Americans who'd been trained in IT, computer programming and software engineering were working in the tech fields once again.

People like my brother Chris, who worked as a VoiP troubleshooter, sent around the country to fix problems, when the initial tech team got stuck, never saw such a downturn in their careers and he, like others in that field have said, "Anyone trained in any of the tech fields who isn't working now, it's due to choice, either theirs or companies choosing not to hire such people."

A shortage of accountants amidst a flood of accounting work DOES NOT equal a pay bonanza for accountants.


Because paying the too few accountants more, for work they're not going to be able to do, does NOTHING to get that temporarily surging workload done.

What DOES happen is pay goes up for accountants in accordance with an increased workload....and when that workload goes down, ultimately many accountants will be laid off! The increased work standard sadly becomes the new "base rate."

It's the same with techs. When the work demand outstrips the available functioning workforce, simply paying the existing, already hired workers more, does NOTHING to address the workload they can't handle...and hiring dysfunctional or marginal techs (those who currently claim to be techs and IT pros who haven't been re-hired) isn't a good option either.

Enter the H-1B Visa.

It saves tens of thousands of jobs from being outsourced overseas and each H-1B creates five to seven new ancillary American jobs.

In other words, even marginal or dysfunctional techs (as you claim to be) can probably get at least some ancillary work....perhaps making coffee, or cutting the grass for higly motivated and high functioning techs.

Supply Side policies have delivered 25 years of unprecedented prosperity to America. Sure they've bound American industry and commerce in a web of regulation, but they've also incentivized investment and made America's business environment (the CREATOR of 88% of America's jobs) a far more stable place.

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