Have been meaning to write about this topic ever since I sat through the last Republican CNN-YouTube debate. There are so many thoughts that one finds it extremely difficult where to start. The level of stunning dis-ingenuousness exhibited by all the candidates save John McCain (Even Ron Paul has gone the no-amnesty route that is such a populist position now)
I don’t want to go into each candidates’ position on immigration – its frankly tedious and I would just be repeating myself – but I did want to opine about how stunningly dis-ingenious the populist position is.
Firstly, this whole debate on H1B – I will predict that without H1B workers, 90% of the actual IT execution in major US corporations would collapse. I know it doesn’t sound terribly good – but I speak from a vantage point of having worked in a number of US Fortune 500s – way more than most readers of this post – and let’s not kid ourselves alright – most IT and development organizations in most companies are vastly Indian. There I said it. They are not diverse. They are not inclusive. They are mostly Indian.
And H1B is an euphemism for Indian software developers. And love them or hate them – the US industry, if it wants to maintain its competitive advantage cannot do without them. Besides, Indian entrepreneurs generate a disproportionate number of startups and generate wealth ( read this, for proof). I am sorry if I am coming across a little aggravated – but I am sick now of these grossly egregious debates on H1B quotas and what not – I would rather have the politicians say Indian – I mean 85% of these visas are taken by Indians arent they. And for the record, they pay Social Security taxes (which they are not eligible for post 65).
So coming back to the point, reduce H1B visas – and it becomes an eminently self defeating exercise. Luckily, I think both Democrats and Republicans get that. But I am modestly insulted by such talk – as a home owner, as a tax payer, as a law-abiding citizen, as someone who productively adds to the US economy and its productiveness – I just find it insulting.
Now, for the other aspect – Illegal immigrants. I dont know why I get it more than most Americans do – you cannot kick out 20 million illegals out of the country. And more importantly, most of them do very productive work, the effects of which, dear citizens, you reap. When you buy coffee for 1.59 at Wawa – you can only do that because that poor woman at the back of the counter fills the coffee carafes all day at minimum wage. And probably without any health coverage.
When you stay at a hotel for USD 99.00 per day, you probably feel nice coming back to the room because the housekeeping has enough staff just because those people you so badly want to kick out have come in and done your bed.
You go to the grocery store and can only buy the cheapest food in the world ( in purchasing power parity) because your Florida oranges were plucked by those people that the Minutemen would gleefully shoot.
Disingenuous? Isnt it apparent? Worse, it borders on implicit racism and xenophobia.
America would be so much better served if its politicians actually acted with some “moral leadership” they claim they offer to the world and not with the hypocrisy that is becoming increasingly so nauseating.
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