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Comment count is 33
Binro the Heretic - 2014-07-20

I don't approve of the "FURRINERS IS GONNA STEAL YER JAWBS!!!" sentiment, but we do need to be calling big tech companies out on this bullshit.

In a nutshell, they want to be able to bring more cheap labor in from overseas. Any programmers or whatever they import from places like India or the Philippines will be the modern equivalent of indentured servants. They'll be paid less, work longer hours in worse conditions and receive fewer benefits. And if they complain, they'll be packed back off to the third-world slum they worked so hard to escape. Meanwhile, tech workers in this country who had to put themselves up in debt to their eyeballs to get the education and training for their jobs will have to settle for wages too low for them to ever pay back those loans.

Big companies refer to this as "being competitive.

Sessions, incidentally, is the asshole behind the notion that every family on welfare gets K a year.

baleen - 2014-07-20

The irony is that most of those people they fly over from India and China are Randian anarcho-capitalists who end up techbro-ing every place they touch. They would probably vote for him after becoming citizens if he could keep his dinosaur yap shut long enough.

PegLegPete - 2014-07-20

Another irony is that you could probably convince an anarcho-capitalist to think textbook socialism - worker control/ownership of production - is a good idea. You might have to present it to them as "if the employees share the risk with employers, the company will be better off" and taper it back to something like what Germany has - where businesses of a certain size must allow the employees to elect a certain amount of the board of directors - I think they'd go for it, however it's still in the air as to whether it would make anything better overall.

Yet another irony is that Sessions is heaping almost the exact same critique upon massive businesses (and elites themselves) from the right as someone from the left - with a relatively slight difference of rhetorical flavor. Maybe Nader is right: there is a coming left-right coalition.

BHWW - 2014-07-21

For all the talk of diversity, Microsoft awards huge contracts to Indian outsourcing vendors, because they do it cheaply and have way way edged out vendors from East Asia and Eastern Europe who can't compete, with the help of some fraud. Well quite a bit of fraud.

These Indian outsourcing contractors are in the business of fake resumes, fake identities, as well information theft, and all other sorts of malfeasance, enabled by corporations like Microsoft who manage to ignore every disaster caused by their association with these outfits because the projected benefits of outsourcing always look so good "on paper" and honest, the contracts are totally solid this time, for real! and besides aren't our human resources supposed to be disposable blocks of meat to be shifted around and discarded as need be?

Gmork - 2014-07-20


Gmork - 2014-07-20

Especially ones that have such awful accents that they might as well not know english at all for all the good it does them in regards to communicating.

fluffy - 2014-07-21

Amazon has started doing all of their H1-B hiring from Australia. The accents are arguably more understandable, although it does bring a rather "interesting" change to the local culture (see: poetv's Australia tag)

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-07-21

"Sorry mate, can't 'elp you there. Let me transfer you to "Gary" our executive support representative."

Gmork - 2014-07-21

I would love to be connected to an Australian IT professional for once. I suppose I carry some resentment towards Indian techies who bother to learn english but not how to actually speak it intelligibly in a conversation.

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-07-20

1) advertise job offer with impossible requirement domestically ( 5 years exerience in 1 year old technology ).

2) acquire adequate evidence that no us citizen is qualified.

3) advertize same job in india with more legitimate requirements.

4) hire for 1/2 wage and

5) stuck working for you.

6) profit$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

SolRo - 2014-07-20

#1 is what every jackass company HR person uses before claiming they cant find any American workers...ie, 10 years experience, extremely specific knowledge of several programs/tools, and start at minimum wage.

EvilHomer - 2014-07-21

Maybe you could help me out here, Mr Wildcat, because I'm having a hard time figuring out why I should be outraged. Indians have just as much right to jobs as anyone else, arguably more, if you consider the history of colonialism. Relaxing immigration controls, particularly for documented workers, has always been seen as a good, progressive goal to support. H-1B workers are not coerced into their job; it is their choice to work - indeed, it is always an uphill battle for them to secure jobs like these, thanks to racist, institutionalized protectionism. And lower wages aren't really a big deal at all, thanks to the fluid and relative nature of money. Costs of living are set regionally, and in an "impoverished" area, like India or Mexico, a relatively "low" paying job (measured by our own standards) will provide a relative compensation many, many times what the job would be worth to someone living in areas where the cost of living was grossly inflated. This is the logic underlying nearly all temporary immigrant labour - contrary to misconception, Indians and Mexicans are not ignorant savages who cannot help but fall prey to slick big city hucksters, they are intelligent, rational human beings who recognize opportunities and are bold enough to take them.

Please, help me out, walk me through why we should be siding with the Tea Party, because I'm just not seeing the problem!

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-07-21

Oh jesus, Homer, it's too early in the morning here for that Horatio Alger bullshit. The short answer is that there is nothing wrong with legal immigration, and even the h1b visa program would be fine if it contained the clause that a premium of 10-20% be paid to each imported worker over the domestic cost. If indeed there are no qualified locals, then it seems reasonable that the better talent should demand a greater salary?

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-07-21

@sol : Yup, and it's easy to attribute that to incompetence ( HR doesn't know tool X didn't exist, etc etc ). But with this little business model in hand, you can appreciate how widespread the problem has become, now that you can identify it for what it is.

EvilHomer - 2014-07-21

>>If indeed there are no qualified locals, then it seems reasonable that the better talent should demand a greater salary?

No, not at all. Whether the foreign workers are "better qualified" than the locals is a red herring designed only for political theater (I trust we can all agree such excuses are bullshit), and salaries are whatever labour says they are. Foreign workers are perfectly willing and able to undercut local competition, so why shouldn't they be allowed to?

Look, think about it like this. Foreign workers win out, because as discussed above, cost-of-living disparities mean that even at reduced wages, they're getting a better salary than our local, landed peasantry would. Companies win out, because they don't have to pay as much overhead. Consumers win out, because lower costs mean lower prices (assuming the market has enough anti-trust regulation to remain competitive). And our own local economies win out, because it's much better for us to have Indian techies working, living, eating, and partying here in America, than for the entire industry to get shipped overseas. Losing a few IT jobs to motivated immigrants is considerably better than losing ALL the IT jobs, plus all the service jobs that could have otherwise supported the now-gone Microsoft workforce.

In fact, the only people that suffer from Microsoft's scheme, near as I can tell, are middle class white men who expected to make obscene amounts of money working in the IT field. And since when did you want me to pity those sorts of people?! Think of this like "redistributive" taxation, only minus the middle man.

EvilHomer - 2014-07-21

Think of the lessons learned long ago by the Third World: you might not like tourists, but it's much better to have those tourists spending money in your backyard, then for them to be thousands of miles away, watching virtual travelogues on TV.

As a direct consequence of our nation's obscene wealth running face first into globalization, we are now the tourist trap, and labour are the tourists. Americans might have to get used to the idea of simply playing the service industry, at least for the near future, until costs of living shrink and equalize with everyone else.

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-07-21

No doubt a lot of people would benefit from the return of indentured servitude. The south was a rich and prosperous place to live at the turn of the century. We can call them "guest workers". It's the free market. etc etc.

That said, I am hoping the Tea Party winds up another debt ceiling crunch. That shit was beautiful. As old Bull burroughs said, it's a Naked Lunch, coz everyone can see what's at the end of their forks.

BHWW - 2014-07-21

And of course any complaints about this sort of egregious abuse of the H-1b program is met with standard bullshit talking points about "racism" or libertarian sperglord glorification of the Holy Free Market, from the sort of vile excuses for people who see no value in their fellow countrymen except as meat-based worker units to climb over on their way to some cushy corporate positions, and usually have such easy solutions for folks who will/may lose their jobs like "uh, can't compete with H-1B visa workers? Just get completely new training every few years, duh" or "Hey overseas operations probably want to hire American workers, just move to Dubai and work for your rich uncle's hedge fund, it's what I would do in your position."

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-07-21

But if you're really stuck for a job, BH, you can always join the Army. Apparently it's become a hotbed of anarcho-capitalist free market philosophy. And so long as they get their government stipend, we're all happy.

EvilHomer - 2014-07-21

And no doubt some people would benefit from stopping immigrant workers from coming here. The question we have to ask is: which policy would result in the most overall benefit, who would see these benefits, and would these gains be made in an ethical manner. I'm just not seeing the downside here, and I'm sorry, but you're not really helping my confidence in the Tea Party right now.

Is the sole reason you're opposing immigration because the Tea Party has somehow convinced you that well-compensated, highly desired, and completely voluntary labour is equivalent to *slavery*? I hope not, because there is absolutely no way you can justify that statement, and I know you're smart enough to carry on a proper discussion.

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-07-21

You need to try to get a job, Homer. Then you will see what we are talking about. If you think flooding the domestic market with cheap foreign workers is a positive thing, then we should be in utopia right now. How's it working out for you?

EvilHomer - 2014-07-21

Re: the Army, you're not far off. I think one of the reasons for this is because, like former Soviet citizens (who are notoriously skeptical about statism), military personnel are actually used to living life under strict government control. We've seen it what it's like, and it's not as good as affluent idealists like to think it would be.

It's not *terrible*, you know, having "free" health care (which isn't actually free, as you have to work for it) or "free" housing (again, not literally free, just free in the sense that Uncle Sam pays for it all behind the scenes, and makes up the difference by paying *you* shit-all directly, and making you do all kinds of dangerous bullshit that you wouldn't otherwise want to do). It's really not a bad deal! I swear to Celestia, it's not. But the key is it's all voluntary, and I think that's what you've got to understand whenever looking at some Navy-tattoed redneck on Reason, scratching your head because there seems to be a disconnect between you see and what you expect to see. People join the military because they want to, they put up with all the pains and joys and indifferences of complete autocratic socialism because that's what they want to do. But people shouldn't *have* to live like that if they don't want to. You shouldn't be a slave (and let's face it, it is slavery, albeit of the more sophisticated, Hellenistic variety, than the boogieman version of slavery you see on TV) unless you choose to be one.

Hell, if you want to cash in, gimme some of your details and I'll get you hooked up! What with the Innocent President of Peace doing what all good statesmen do, scaring the plebs and threatening to wage Just War against the Other, I'm sure they'd take you. Free healthcare, man. All you gotta do is ask!

Anyway, that's getting way off-topic, so we should get back to discussing why in the Nine Hells you support the Tea Party all of a sudden. Also, real quick, because I'm pretty sure the "anarcho-capitalist" thing was directed squarely at me, what makes you think I'm an anarcho-capitalist? I'm not an anarcho-anything. Maybe a *minarcho*-capitalist, or perhaps a libertarian-Pirate-sovereigncitizen with shades of Green and lingering relics from my hip Trotskyite-cum-Dengist past, but anarcho-capitalist?!? What kind of weirdo do you think I am?

EvilHomer - 2014-07-21

>>You need to try to get a job, Homer. Then you will see what we are talking about. If you think flooding the domestic market with cheap foreign workers is a positive thing, then we should be in utopia right now. How's it working out for you?

Well, two things. One, I'm glad you brought up the "what would you do if you lost your job to an immigrant" thing, because the answer is quite telling: I would be upset. But how *I* feel doesn't necessarily matter, and isn't necessarily what's best. I would love to keep my job. I would also love to have seven wives, a rocket ship, and be legally entitled to shoot furries from my bedroom window. Appealing to someone's emotions by trying to get them to have a personal stake in an issue is nothing more than sophistry. If a policy is right, it's right, if it's wrong, it's wrong, and we should really take pains to distance ourselves as much as possible if we want to evaluate policy in a rational, objective manner.

(granted, I'm paid so little anyway that it'd be a miracle if HR could find an itinerant foreign worker willing to undercut me. And even if they did, fuck it! I'd just move to Phillipines and become an H1B worker myself. Thanks to cost of living disparities, my Army pension alone could probably net me a small house in the Phillipines, while here in New England I can barely afford food between work, pension, and 9/11 allotment)

The second point is, there is no such thing as Utopia. I believe you know this already. We cannot have our cake and eat it to; the West cannot maintain it's standards of living and the developing world cannot suddenly become the West (although things like this new H1B policy go a long way towards elevating the developing world). We're also a loooooong way off from "flooding the market" with temporary foreign labour. A few thousand extra workers isn't "a flood". We're in no danger of being drowned by a menacing brown tide, sadly, but this is a good first step.

memedumpster - 2014-07-21

1.) The military is a for profit libertarian capitalist system where nothing is worth less than human life, or worth more than a war where expensive machines are used to take human life. War is the purest form of capitalist free market competition. You are where you need to be.

2.) They closed XBox Studios, which they discovered is actually worthless to them as a company (but you'll get your Halo TV show, they couldn't stop that one) and seek to replace them with workers who are valuable elsewhere in the company. Unless you want the assistant AD for the B Unit on Halo the TV show scenes 16-27 writing Windows 9 or whatever.

3.) Bitch, you knew it was a snake.

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-07-21

I get that it's a little underhanded to bring in our personal lives, but really if I can't get you to stand up for yourself I'm not going to do it instead. All I can say is, I have lived through a period of US history when there was a substantial middle class and a guy like you could get a decent entry level job. That's what we're talking about here: not some PhD level position running a research dept, just the usual job opportunities that a first world country should offer its citizens.

Utopia may be impossible, but American was pretty nice when these conditions prevailed. Germany is pretty nice these days, too. You can see how they do it; it's not rocket science. As the creditor of the EU and manufacturing/R&D powerhouse, you can't tell me the policies I am proposing fail when applied in practice. OTOH, looking at the US, I'd say your prescriptions are worse than the disease.

Not sure why you think I am all Tea Party now. Just thankful that the opposition party is doing it's job rather than yelling "undocumented nigger in the whitehouse" repeatedly and convulsing on the floor like untreated epileptics. Got to reward any burst of common sense that comes from that corner, no matter how rarely.

SolRo - 2014-07-21

So EvilHomer thinks the working class should keep getting paid less and less world wide until some magical equilibrium is reached.

While the ruling class will keep getting higher and higher profits from driving them into poverty.

Fuck you EvilHomer.

kingofthenothing - 2014-07-22

75% is a crazy number. That's a lot of people with dreams crushed, who have lost out on potential to do something appreciated, something possibly even meaningful or great with their limited time in this world.

Keep in mind, more women are getting STEM degrees than men these days. I can't imagine how terribly disheartening it has to be to have a degree in something that industry giants have been saying for decades will always be in demand, only to have to settle on some lesser career path with no mental challenge and no hope of fulfillment.

And all for what? They know exactly what's going on. They know they're fucking children out of their futures, all so they can have an endless supply of nerds on tap.

SolRo - 2014-07-20

It's so fucking blatant even a tea party stooge noticed.

though I'd bet MS, like every other large corporation in America, has bought enough politicians on the left/right to make them ignore it.

Oscar Wildcat - 2014-07-21

It's just that Gates and Buffet lean Democratic so Sessions feels comfortable taking a swing at them. Otherwise he'd be sucking Koch like the rest of them. But to be fair, this is how our system is supposed to work. I don't expect his motives to be pure, just that his criticisms are real and relevant. This would be a bold new direction for the tea party, but much like the debt default issue, it's a welcome one.

It puts me to mind of Churchills famous observation on us policies. "The US can always be counted on to do the right thing, after it exhausts all other available options".

Shanghai Tippytap - 2014-07-21

counterpoint; once the race to the bottom completes and all workers worldwide are scraping the bottom of the barrel for wages, international trade unionization can begin.

this is, of course, assuming that the technology for government repression hasn't advanced to cartoonish shadowrun levels.

Lef - 2014-07-21

You mean it hasn't already?

I admit that cyberpunk 2020 was more my game...

SolRo - 2014-07-21

Most communications are already monitored, it's less about needing new technology, just a shift in ideology.

mon666ster - 2014-07-22

"If you believe in the free market, you'll agree we need some regulation here".

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