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Ask Slashdot: Reasonable Immigration Policy For Highly-Trained Workers? 357

Posted by Soulskill
from the must-be-able-to-recite-shakespeare-in-the-original-klingon dept.
davidwr writes "What are a reasonable temporary-worker or immigration-visa rules to apply to workers whose skills would quickly net them a 'top 20th percentile wages' job (about $100,000) in the American workplace, if they were allowed to work in the country? Should the visa length be time-limited? Should it provide for a path to permanent residency? Should the number be limited, and if so, how should we decide what the limit should be? The people affected are already likely eligible for special work-permit programs, but these programs may have quotas, time limits, prior-job-offer-requirements, and other restrictions. I'm asking what Slashdotters think the limits and restrictions, if any, should be. (Let's assume any policy to keep out criminals and spies remains as-is.)"
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Ask Slashdot: Reasonable Immigration Policy For Highly-Trained Workers?

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  • let them stay. Educated immigrants are more likely to start their own business. So where do you want that business to be?

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by geekoid (135745)

      More importantly, can they spell?

      "Hars working", sheeesh.

      • by jd (1658)

        It's not their fault, the Queen's English committee folded yesterday [guardian.co.uk] due to the severe apathy towards actually communicating with people.

    • by Ichijo (607641)

      Educated immigrants are more likely to start their own business. So where do you want that business to be?

      If they're going to pay their workers generously, let them stay.

      If they're planning to pay their workers as little as possible (market wages), then it doesn't matter so much where they set up their business.

      Remember, it takes two people to create a job, and each side always tries to take advantage of the other. Business owners aren't as saintly as some would make them out to be.

      • by Kergan (780543)

        If they're planning to pay their workers as little as possible (market wages), then it doesn't matter so much where they set up their business.

        You'd rather the job be created elsewhere while you're left paying for unemployment benefits? (Or prison warden salaries, if the unemployeds' lack of welfare is such that they turn to crime to eat?)

        • by Ichijo (607641)

          Unemployed, or underpaid? Tough choice...

          • by yurtinus (1590157)
            Right, because nothing is better than something if that something isn't as much as you wanted. Unemployment benefits do eventually run out y'know...
  • Assuming you're not from a country where security issues might be a concern.

    • by fiannaFailMan (702447) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:23PM (#40225385) Journal

      I was fortunate enough to have a company sponsor me on a H1B. It took me six years of waiting and thousands of dollars in lawyer's fees to adjust my status, i.e. go from H1B to Green Card. It's not that easy. The people on the Mayflower would be turned back if they made that trip today.

      • I was fortunate enough to have a company sponsor me on a H1B. It took me six years of waiting and thousands of dollars in lawyer's fees to adjust my status, i.e. go from H1B to Green Card. It's not that easy. The people on the Mayflower would be turned back if they made that trip today.

        I was with you until your hyperbolic Mayflower comment. Half of them died before the first winter was over, and the second half of the trip across the sea was in a relatively small ship fighting gales and nasty seas. You had it easy.

        • by daremonai (859175) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:35PM (#40225579)

          I was with you until your hyperbolic Mayflower comment. Half of them died before the first winter was over ...

          Obviously, they did not have the appropriate skill set. They should have been turned back.

      • by readin (838620)

        I was fortunate enough to have a company sponsor me on a H1B. It took me six years of waiting and thousands of dollars in lawyer's fees to adjust my status, i.e. go from H1B to Green Card. It's not that easy. The people on the Mayflower would be turned back if they made that trip today.

        The American Indians wouldn't have suffered as much genocide had they been able to enact and enforce a meaningful immigration policy.

        • I was fortunate enough to have a company sponsor me on a H1B. It took me six years of waiting and thousands of dollars in lawyer's fees to adjust my status, i.e. go from H1B to Green Card. It's not that easy. The people on the Mayflower would be turned back if they made that trip today.

          The American Indians wouldn't have suffered as much genocide had they been able to enact and enforce a meaningful immigration policy.

          They were doing pretty well at "enforcing immigration policy" when the Vikings tried to move on from Greenland and settle North America. It was disease that reduced their numbers later and made them vulnerable to the bible thumpers.

          • by readin (838620)

            The American Indians wouldn't have suffered as much genocide had they been able to enact and enforce a meaningful immigration policy.

            They were doing pretty well at "enforcing immigration policy" when the Vikings tried to move on from Greenland and settle North America. It was disease that reduced their numbers later and made them vulnerable to the bible thumpers.

            My guess is that the American Indians would have been better off letting a few more Vikings in (but not too many). A small permanent settlement in the colder less populated far north would have allowed the slower introduction of both technology and disease for a while before getting hit with all of the new technologies and diseases at once.

      • by cpu6502 (1960974)

        >>>The people on the Mayflower would be turned back if they made that trip today.

        And America would still be controlled by the Indians. Lax immigration policy is never a good idea, because the people you greet as friends, will then go all-out war against you in the 1800s, and force you into reservations.

      • by tompaulco (629533) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @06:01PM (#40225899) Homepage Journal
        It took me six years of waiting and thousands of dollars in lawyer's fees to adjust my status
        Too little too late but you could have just done 6 years of waiting and zero dollars of lawyer's fees. The information on the process is all out there and free. There are filing fees and waiting periods, but the lawyer, despite what they might tell you, doesn't get it done any faster or better.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Mod parent up. The notion that some people on Slashdot portray of an easy life for H1B workers is a complete falsehood.

        Unless you have a masters degree (or equivalent), you will most likely be in the system as H1B status for years. This means that:
        * You need somewhat of a life here, but if you lose your job for any reason you need to leave in ~10 days, which may involve selling property (cars), and ending lease agreements. If you take too long to leave you may be barred from re-entry. Technically the 10 day

    • by aaarrrgggh (9205)

      It can be very hard, unless you have enough cash to start a significant business. I think $5MM is the number that I have seen for a few countries. I looked in Thailand and Australia about 10 years ago: Australia wasn't too hard as long as you were young and upwardly mobile, but Thailand was the opposite. They didn't want to let people in that would become the new elite. They set it up to milk 90% of the people that come in-- between lawyers fees and accountants, you would be spending at least $10k per

  • A few thoughts (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:17PM (#40225305)

    We should favor workers who are looking for permanent residency. They are good for the economy and the community.

    We should make sure it costs no less to hire a foreign worker to work in the US than it costs to hire an existing resident.

    We should not be using foreign worker visas to train people as a prelude to off-shoring.

    I'm wondering if an auction system for tech visas would work out.

    • by mikael_j (106439)

      The tech worker visa auction thing just might work. The trick would be to keep the cost of a visa at a level that just barely makes it unprofitable to screw with the system (to bring in lower-paid foreign workers or as you said, just bring them in as step one of an outsourcing plan) while still being affordable enough that any company seriously looking to hire someone from another country could easily stomach paying for the visa.

    • I can empathize form where you are coming from, but you are ask subjective question where people give the wrong answers.

      Even the simple one on permanent residence. I worked on a study on Scandinavian immigrants to the US in the late 19th century. Over ½ said they were going to return. Almost none did. The predictive power just was not there. I am going to rely on antidotal evidence but I still think it holds true. People come to the US with plans and after 5 years those plans almost always gets

      • Re:Let them all in (Score:5, Interesting)

        by AK Marc (707885) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @06:07PM (#40225987)
        Shaving $5k off "native" pay isn't a bad thing. I'd vote for eliminating all quotas over a 5 year period (giving the market some time to absorb any change in immigration).
        Rules:
        1) must have an advanced degree capable of pulling in $100,000 or more per year in the US market.
        2) No violent convictions.
        3) No pre-existing medical conditions (TB, AIDS, smoking, cancer).

        They are issued two 6-month visas and four 1-year visas (not at the same time, but sequentially), where they must be employed at $100,000 or more and have no criminal convictions of any kind (I used to have to put in "other than minor traffic tickets" but Texas finally decriminalized traffic tickets sometime after 2001, when I moved away, and I think they were the last where 1 mph over the limit and such was a criminal misdemeanor).

        At the end of those 5 years, give them a green card or citizenship or something like that. It would suck for those who would make $102,000 in today's market, but $95,000 in a market filled with others like them so that a quota would help them, but the real effect is that the $110,000 per year jobs would settle in around $100,000 per year, and immigrants looking to move to the US would aim for the $150,000+ jobs for the extra cushion.

        If 1,000,000 can get in after 5 years (no quotas), then let them all in, they'll make $100,000,000,000 minimum (taxes and economic value).

        My "fix" for H1-B was always to charge the same for the visa (to the sponsoring company) as it would take to train someone into the position. Then train someone into that position and revoke the H1-B visa. I'm not sure it would have the effect I'm desiring, that companies would begin training themselves, rather than outsourcing the training to the US government, but I'm sure someone smarter than me could fix that.
        • by gbjbaanb (229885)

          surely the pre-existing medical condition is a bonus if they're paying for health care themselves. Got to keep the American medical industry thriving, how else can you afford to hire foreign doctors on exorbitant salaries?

      • by houghi (78078)

        People come to the US with plans and after 5 years those plans almost always gets turned around.

        I know many people for whom it is the other way around. They wanted to stay and left for another country anyway.

        Same reason: things change and shit happens.

        When you look at inner country moving. Some people move around all the time, others will die in the house they were born in.

        If you go from Kansas to Silicon Valley, are you not taking away the job of one of the locals?

  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn@nOspAM.gmail.com> on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:18PM (#40225331) Journal

    "Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
    Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

    Should now read:

    "Give me your inventors, your geniuses,
    Your bored singletons yearning to spur economic growth,
    The fertile intellects left from your teeming chaff.
    Send these, the able, patent-ers to me,
    I lift my GDP beside the golden door!"

    Let's face it, work visas are handed out like bouncers controlling admission to a club. You are asking these questions that sound like they treat people with respect and offer them opportunity but what I hear is basically: Are you going to be a net positive for the United States? And how do we accurately measure the Nikola Teslas and Yao Mings from the Dr. Nasser al-Aulaqis (Fullbright Scholar and father of Anwar al-Awlaki).

    You know what? It's a dirty business and I don't want any part of it. In my own humble opinion, it's unethical. Your questions sound like "Can we implement a brain drain on the rest of the world with little or no risk?" I think it should be all law-abiding individuals or none and, despite 9/11 and the Mariel Boatlift [wikipedia.org] that consisted of criminals and mental patients, I personally lean toward letting everyone in unless they are known to have committed or been convicted of crimes in their country of origin that are 1) credible sentences and 2) also misdemeanors or higher in the United States.

    • America wasn't founded by god damn law abiders.

      We should look at the 'crime' and decide if they were breaking a 'stupid law', if so they are in.

      For example: We don't want to reject someone just because they are ambitious enough to build and operate a still. I'd go so far as to reject anyone from a dry (e.g. saudi) or overtaxed (e.g. all of Scandinavia) country that didn't have a conviction for bootlegging. I'd accept them only if they could prove they had 'got away with it'.

      • Ah, the old trap of rejecting someone for doing everything by the book... yes, I've met your sort on my path to U.S. Citizenship. Thank you for your contribution.

    • It's not only a brain drain, it's a huge drain on the original country's economy. Typically you siphon off someone with a bachelor's degree, who's gotten 13 years of primary education and 4 years of college paid by the economy of the original country. The US throws in a couple of years of grad school and gets a highly productive part of the economy at lowest cost. Spoken as a guy who came to the US for a one year post-doc and somehow got stuck...
      • On the flip side

        You have somebody who send back remittances
        Make come back and bring additional skills.
        Creates demand and excitement for education, encouraging more people to enter the field.

        IIRC, in the field of nursing, the tipping point is 20%. There have been studies trying to figure out if educating nurses for oversea work helps the local economy. If less then 20% of the nurses head overseas, then the county has more nurses then it would normally have.

        As Gandhi (?) said – Better a brain drain then

    • I don't think "Give me your tired, your poor..." was ever said out of the goodness of the nation's collective heart. It was said at a time where we had factories that needed workers. Now we have workers that need factories.

      • If we imported a bunch of poor people we would have factories again. Cheap labor would bring them back. About 100 million people want to imigrate to the united states. We have plenty of room and food for them. Not sure if we have water for that many people. Short term you would have a lot of disruption. People would lose jobs. Wages would go down. There would be deflation on the dollar. Lots of oppurtoonity as well. Local buisnesses would be able to sell goods and services to these people.
      • I don't think "Give me your tired, your poor..." was ever said out of the goodness of the nation's collective heart. It was said at a time where we had factories that needed workers.

        Good point.

        Now we have workers that need factories.

        True. So let's bring in people who will eventually contribute to the consumer demand that will make building more factories (or service industry places of employment) here profitable.

        Furthermore, don't make it short-term. If we limit them to a short period of time here, they

      • by slew (2918)

        I don't think "Give me your tired, your poor..." was ever said out of the goodness of the nation's collective heart. It was said at a time where we had factories that needed workers. Now we have workers that need factories.

        Actually, the phrase "Give me your tired, your poor..." is from a poem (The New Colossus written by Emma Lazarus in 1883) which was inspired by about the US experience of poor Jewish immigrants escaping persecution in Eastern Europe.

        As for the US immigration policies of the 1900's, there were certainly lots of factories that needed workers and eastern and southern Europe had people that wanted to work resulting in immigration of about ~700K/year (out of 1M/year total or ~1%/year) per year from those countri

    • by AK Marc (707885)

      the Mariel Boatlift that consisted of criminals and mental patients,

      But the criminals were often political prisoners, who weren't in for violent crimes, and a large percentage of the asylum inmates were committed due to "mental illnesses" such as homosexuality. It would be like getting sent criminals and committed from the USSR and getting Alexander Solzhenitsyn.

    • by tompaulco (629533)
      Well, it is not like that was our national motto or something. It was just an exerpt from a poem that ended up getting emplazoned in bronze and posted inside the statue of liberty. The poem was by Emma Lazarus who was quite wealthy, incidentally.
      I'm not sure why the U.S. gets all the flak for not accepting every person that comes knocking. Somehow we seem to be held to a higher standard than everybody else.
    • by asliarun (636603)

      Let's face it, work visas are handed out like bouncers controlling admission to a club. You are asking these questions that sound like they treat people with respect and offer them opportunity but what I hear is basically: Are you going to be a net positive for the United States? And how do we accurately measure the Nikola Teslas and Yao Mings from the Dr. Nasser al-Aulaqis (Fullbright Scholar and father of Anwar al-Awlaki).

      You know what? It's a dirty business and I don't want any part of it. In my own humble opinion, it's unethical. Your questions sound like "Can we implement a brain drain on the rest of the world with little or no risk?" I think it should be all law-abiding individuals or none and, despite 9/11 and the Mariel Boatlift [wikipedia.org] that consisted of criminals and mental patients, I personally lean toward letting everyone in unless they are known to have committed or been convicted of crimes in their country of origin that are 1) credible sentences and 2) also misdemeanors or higher in the United States.

      +5 Insightful.

      In a way, I see a parallel between how open a country should be with how open software should be. The fundamental philosophy behind the two things is the same, in my humble opinion. Just like software, a country, especially the USA, will NOT go bankrupt or even lose its income earning potential if it recognizes that intellect and intellectual property should be nurtured and left free, not be caged and locked away. I may sound over the top while making this comment, but there are very few count

  • by wisnoskij (1206448) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:22PM (#40225363) Homepage

    It seems any system that differentiates based on wage is inherently flawed.
    Most try to differentiate based on skill and if that skill can be found locally.

    • by jd (1658)

      Wage should be -a- factor, since higher wages for the middle class means a stronger economy. At present, all the money is at the extreme end of the food chain, so there's no fiscal circulation, which in turns means stagnation.

      But it should not be the only factor. Capacity to -generate- wealth should be more important than capacity to earn it, where you need to ignore all right-wing dogma over who actually generates wealth. Inventors generate wealth. Discoverers generate wealth. Engineers of pretty well any

  • Opinion != news (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SirGarlon (845873) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:22PM (#40225371)
    Trolling for opinions on immigration is not "news for nerds." Believe it or not, I come here to get informed, not to get drawn into pointless flame-wars.
  • Top 20% creates jobs for the people in the bottom 80%. The myth of immigrant labor taking jobs is pretty much busted. Wall St Journal reported last month that Mexico is a NET EMMIGRATION country since 2006. If you add up all the "lost jobs" since they started broadcasting the "lost jobs" statistic, the developing world would be an empty desert. The jobs that are lost are not jobs we want. What we want are the top 20%, and we want those companies to excel with the best workforce possible. http://retr [blogspot.com]
    • The myth of immigrant labor taking jobs is pretty much busted.

      This myth was busted a long, long time ago. See The Lump of Labor Fallacy [wikipedia.org]. Economists have understood for centuries that economics is not a zero-sum game. But uneducated people continue to believe it is.

  • Personally, I have my doubts that immigration is logical in a democracy.
    But if you are a capitalist and are coming from a standpoint of increasing the economy, then allowing anyone who wants to come and work on whatever is the only logical policy.

  • For any bright person that wants to immigrate here, they should sponsor someone in the US who is currently unemployed to immigrate into their home country.

    Maybe the idea is half-baked: what additional cooking do you suggest?

  • 1. Build a wall and take other border security measures to prevent the bringing in of illegal aliens, illegal drugs, illegal weapons, and whatever else we want to keep out of our country.
    2. When the border is secure - really secure - amnesty current illegal trespassers so we can end the situation of having two classes of people in the country and can stop having to show our papers any time we want to do a little bit of work.
    3. Give out plenty of visas to software engineers because the cost of shipping sof
  • HERE? This is one of those topics that is guaranteed to garner intelligent discourse by a few amidst a horrifying see of flame from the majority. Why not look into studies on the impact of skilled workers joining a workforce, and the cultural effects of immigration instead? My take is that there should be minimal (but some) financial incentive on the short-term for employment of such workers (IMHO, H1-B is *too* much incentive) and incentives towards citizenship. I believe that immigration of good skill

  • by br00tus (528477) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:35PM (#40225567)

    As has been pointed out before, the point of H1-B visas is to get rid of older American workers who with education and experience have become highly trained, and replace them with less trained, cheap foreign labor. In 2010, during record-high unemployment, 117,409 people came in on the H1-B visa. Which is just one of many visas that people come to the US and work on. Professor Norm Matloff has a web page [ucdavis.edu] about this.

  • by DCFusor (1763438) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:49PM (#40225783) Homepage
    And can't easily do it. He wants to help with my fusion project - for love or tiny money. I want him as a contractor, so I get to give him what little I can afford, rather than giving the state unemployment and disability - I won't have min wage left over for him after that crap - which is why small business doesn't hire people when things are tight. This sucks, he can only get a 6 mo tourist visa unless I can find a university that hasn't hit its limit to hire him as a visiting scholar (he qualifies in spades) so he can at least work here part time. No ethnic/race/spy issues with this guy - he's top rate nuclear physicist and well off enough not to need much money to do what we love to do. Since I can't afford him as an official "employee" (eg the state required crap), the deal isn't happening. He'd be a great US citizen, but there's no way to there from here it seems, just ask the State Dept - if you can get them on the phone at all, you just get shunted from auto-response to another non human response number in a big circle.
    .

    This sucks.

  • dude (Score:5, Insightful)

    by buddyglass (925859) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:50PM (#40225793)

    Let 'em all in. If you're going to pull down six digits (and pay taxes on it) then I say: WELCOME TO THE U.S.A.

    Here's the thing. We Americans don't actually build stuff, grow stuff or put stuff together anymore. Well, we do, but it's becoming more and more rare. What do we do? We make software and design stuff. Unfortunately, the kind of endeavors one might easily imagining doing somewhere else. We really, really don't want that to happen, since it's this kind of activity we're going to rely on moving forward to support the rest of the economy, which is inwardly focused (medicine, finance, service industry, etc.) That's why we really want all the world's bad-ass scientists, engineers and developers to re-locate their Hindi / Mandarin / who-the-hell-cares-as-long-as-they-also-speak-English selves stateside and get to work building the next Facebook Google.

    • Let 'em all in. If you're going to pull down six digits (and pay taxes on it) then I say: WELCOME TO THE U.S.A.

      Here's the thing. We Americans don't actually build stuff, grow stuff or put stuff together anymore. Well, we do, but it's becoming more and more rare. What do we do? We make software and design stuff. Unfortunately, the kind of endeavors one might easily imagining doing somewhere else. We really, really don't want that to happen, since it's this kind of activity we're going to rely on moving forward to support the rest of the economy, which is inwardly focused (medicine, finance, service industry, etc.) That's why we really want all the world's bad-ass scientists, engineers and developers to re-locate their Hindi / Mandarin / who-the-hell-cares-as-long-as-they-also-speak-English selves stateside and get to work building the next Facebook Google.

      You should visit the Midwest some time. There are entire states devoted to growing stuff.

  • by gestalt_n_pepper (991155) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:58PM (#40225865)

    As in medical, engineering, software, geophysics, etc. The best thing that could happen to the USA is a population bias in favor of intelligence. At the moment, it would seem that we desperately need that.

    However, I would also propose that those with without technical degrees (e.g political science, ethno-musicology) need not apply, but good luck in your country search.

  • ... because that's how it currently feels when you want to get a US visa with a strong education and the intention to create a company there. Scratch that; this doesn't even remotely begin to describe US immigration officials. I'd wager that they export more US jobs (by having them created elsewhere, directly or indirectly) than all other professions combined.

    Seriously... Just open the floodgates and let anyone who applies with a degree come and settle, including those after lower quintile jobs. People with

  • Why the limitations? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by houghi (78078) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @06:02PM (#40225919)

    Don't you believe in a free market?
    I think it is silly to restrict people because of where they are born. If somebody is better then I am, why should he NOT be able to take my job.
    If _I_ am better then somebody else, why should I not be able to take his job?
    If you are an employer, why should you not have the ability to hire the best people that you can?
    Do you want to be hired on what you are able to do, or because of your race, sex, religion or nationality?

    I have a different nationality from the country where I work. My company thought I was the best for the task, so they hired me. They thought higher of me then of people of their own country. The reason why? Because they cared about the job, not about the passport.

    And when people speak about me not being from their country I say: I have chosen the country I live in. I have made a very calculated decision as an adult. That means I deserve it MORE to live here then those who are born here. That always brings up interesting discussions. :-D

    • by JustNiz (692889)

      The rest of the US economy just isn't a "free market" so you cause a massive imbalance by having one part of it being so.

      As an immigrant to the US myself I can also tell you that your solution would get you an endless stream of people coming from economically poorer countries who's only plan is to come to the US for a year or two, live cheap and send the vast majority of their earnings back home i.e. out of the US economic system, then eventually move back home and live it up there as they are now relativel

      • by JustNiz (692889)

        Typo: I meant skill-sets not skillets.
        You can never devalue the good ol' US bar-b-q :-)

  • It is (relatively) easy for skilled workers to work in the U.S. either temporarily or to immigrate.

    Basically, there has to be no American that can be found that meets the minimum job requirements at the prevailing wage.

    I did write skilled.

    Of course, "found" has different interpretations depending on whether the stay is temporary (H1-B) or permanent (EB-2 or EB-3 "Green Card").

    For the temporary case, the employer has to assert they can't find any Americans (and not have layed off any in the last six months,

  • With an average unemployment of over 8.2%, and you can't find a single American to do your job?
    • Yes. Do you think that the 8.2% who are underemployed are eligible for the "top 20th percentile" jobs? 15% of Americans are barely employable, and we have 8.2% unemployed. The best hope of the unemployed 8.2% is a quick injection of smarts to their prospective employers.
    • With an average unemployment of over 8.2%, and you can't find a single American to do your job?

      We are talking about the 20% top percentile, 6-figure salary type of jobs, you know. This is not about filling job slots, but bringing highly trained talent into the country. If we are to survive the inevitability of globalization (and the cheap-o manufacturing flight that comes with it), we must do this.

    • by dave562 (969951) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @07:18PM (#40226777) Journal

      What field do you work in?

      It took me three plus months of searching to find a good IT employee to help me with my workload. I'm at a company that has tripled its revenue in the last two years. I have more work than I can handle on my own, but I need someone competent to do it... not someone who I need to train and hold their hand. I need to be more productive, not less productive. I need someone I can delegate work to and know that they will do it just as well or better than I can. Those people are not easy to find. I had to sort through a whole slew of unqualified candidates before finding the guy I hired.

      And right after I hired him, I asked for a raise because going through the hiring process made me realize just how limited the supply of qualified technical workers really is. They gave it to me, because the company knows it too.

      There is a serious problem with Americans. Too many people think that they deserve a high paying job. They think they can go "get an education" and get hired by a company that will give them a career track.

      Most of the people I know who are doing well are doing what they enjoy. They are in IT and they like computers. They are doctors and they are fascinated by life and the body. They are engineers and they are complete geeks for building things. They are into biochem and are thrilled to be working with the building blocks of life. They all have passion and they work hard and are constantly thinking about work... not because they have to, but because their brains are wired that way. They enjoy it. It fascinates them.

      Too many people get too focused on being "successful". They do not realize that success comes from excelling at what you do. The drive to excel only comes from passion. Either passion about the task, or passion about the reward. People who are passionate about the task will be successful their entire lives. People who are passionate about the rewards will eventually burn out.

  • I don't think so - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Personal_income_in_the_United_States [wikipedia.org]

    Household income will come closer, but only 6-7% of people make that kind of money.

  • by quax (19371) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @06:37PM (#40226337)

    I worked in Germany, the US and now Canada. Had a green card for the US due to my American wife, but decided that Canada would be a good place to sit out the Great Recession. I wouldn't be here if this country didn't have fairly transparent immigration rules that allow for certainty that you and your familly will get permanent residence status.

    Payed of handsomely for Canada. After all I pay a heck of a lot of taxes - not considerably much worse than what I had to pay in the US though and my salary increased by a good margin when I made the move.

  • What are a reasonable temporary-worker or immigration-visa rules to apply to workers whose skills would quickly net them a 'top 20th percentile wages' job (about $100,000) in the American workplace...

    It depends. Are we at economic full employment with american workers in those positions? If not, why would want to encourage businesses to hire non-american workers? On the other hand, if we are at economic full employment with american workers in those positions, then by all means, fill the empty positions with skilled non-americans.

  • Whatever the rules, there needs to be reciprocity - if a country won't let US citizens move there, purchase property and pay the same tax rates as residents, then screw 'em.

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