Another PR Gaffe by

I thank a couple of alert readers for calling to my attention to this video of a National Journal LIVE event, which was partly sponsored by, the lobbying organization founded by Mark Zuckerberg to promote expansive policies for H-1B and immigration in general. arranged for the panel to include Lars Dalgaard, a former entrepreneur and current venture capatilist who is associated with During the discussion the moderator, the National Journal’s Niharika Acharya, asked about the SCE case, in which American IT workers were replaced by foreign workers, and forced to train those foreign replacements. Apparently having prepared beforehand, Daalgard recognized the substance of the question even as Acharya was in the midst of posing it, and replied,

You know, I’m going to be rather crude about that. Nobody’s going to hold you up and carry you around…If you’re not going to work hard enough to be qualified to get the job…well then, you don’t deserve the job.

Archarya said, “That’s rather harsh,” and turned to the other panelist, P.J. Corbut, who said he agreed with Dalgaard.

Outrageous?  Sure. To my knowledge, neither SCE nor anyone else has claimed that the laid-off Americans at SCE weren’t working hard. What we do know is that the foreign workers were a lot cheaper than the Americans they replaced. Hard to believe Dalgaard would deny the obvious.

This isn’t the first time someone from has made statements along these lines. Joe Green, while serving as the organization’s first president, bragged that the tech industry could buy its way in Congress and the media, and also implied on C-SPAN that tech firms were laying off Americans and replacing them with better-quality Americans. One of the interviewers asked Green, “Are you saying that all of the [Americans] who are laid off are not talented and all the people from these other countries are valued employees?” Green, realizing how unreasonable his remark sounded (and was), didn’t really answer. Green resigned, apparently having been fired, not long afterward.

My guess is that won’t be sending Dalgaard to more panels anytime soon either. But his attitude typifies what I’ve observed among tech CEOs: an arrogance, a sense of entitlement, even a Messiah Complex. Not to mention a completely uncaring attitude. I’ve mentioned before an incident some years ago when I was chatting with Netflix founder and CEO Reed Hastings. When I mentioned that H-1B has caused major harm to older American tech workers, not just financial but also emotional, with divorces and even some suicides, he sarcastically replied, “Maybe they beat their wives too.” Bill Gates looks good in comparison.

But there is more. We should all be concerned that was a sponsor of this National Journal forum. The latter is a private enterprise, of course, but one that has enjoyed respect. That this forum was one-sided is obviously an indication that’ dollars have influence (just as Green said they would), and that should worry any reader of the magazine. Indeed, even Archaya had apologetically prefaced her question to Dalgaard by saying she was playing the “devil’s advocate.” Something similar occurred a few years ago with the Washington Monthly.

So the whole thing is even scarier than just Dalgaard’s callous remark.


13 thoughts on “Another PR Gaffe by

  1. He is not a US native. You see this over and over, this arrogance, this hatred of Americans by these foreign jerks. They come here, abuse our system, and have this great contempt. Well, it’s legal, but it’s not right.


  2. Oh, and Washington Monthly? That is nothing but a huge PR firm for the outsources and body shops and H-1b pimps. Over and over, they publish pro-H-1B pimp crap, and never a hint of balance. The magazine has clearly been bought off by the H-1B scum.


  3. Washington Monthly frequently has hit pieces written by Rob Atkinson, head of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, yet another foundation there pimping for the cheap labor and limitless supply of foreign cheap coders. Here are a few of the pieces he has published:

    What amazing is that one piece, in which he talks about China moving up the innovation chain from low end to high end manufacturing, is one place where industrial espionage by H-1Bs works DIRECTLY AGAINST US interests, and one in which US H-1B pimps have NEVER acknowledged the serious danger we are in:

    Article after article by this guy, and NEVER a counterweight. It’s a violation of the journalistic integrity, in which BOTH SIDES should be expressed.


  4. @Statistical Observer I don’t think we can just blame it on foreign jerks. Carly Fiorina exuded the same contempt for American engineers when she was at HP, and she was born in the US. I wonder if this is a common attitude among technology executives and VCs.


    • Dave, I think it is widely held among VCs today, sadly. The whole VC world was never what you call democratic, but after the 1980s it wasn’t just Wall Street that thought they were “Masters Of The Universe”, and it’s gotten seriously worse as time has passed.


  5. The cozy relationships of corporate leadership with the media and the government agencies leave American workers at a disadvantage.

    I do not know if this has always been the case and it is only with the availability of more viewpoints and investigative reporting. It is since the advent of the internet that these alliances have become widely known and so obvious. Have these relationships always been putting the American workers at a disadvantage or have the recent riches of a few created a vulture class of business leaders who are willing to do anything for a buck in their pocket.

    I remember the Robber Barons of the 19th century from my history books. We have a new class of them who are using the 21st century technology which makes it easy to import laborers and export work outside the US to take the US backward in time. All of the progress made during the early and mid 20th century in creating a thriving middle class can be destroyed (and in the view of some already has begun). Will the defining moment in time be the advent of “the pirates of Silicon Valley”?

    It is ironic that the technologies which inform us can also be used to destroy us. We have created the ability to communicate and organize controversial ideologies around the world easily. We may find that we will be watching our own destruction while simultaneously advancing the technologies that allow the destruction to occur.

    I find hope in the people who are willing to place themselves at risk to bring the issues before the country. There are many “ordinary” Americans with great ideas on how to solve the problems in society and to provide more opportunities for all. I hope that future history books will note the efforts of people like Norm and find that the efforts have made more pies rather than having had to cut the pieces of the only one smaller. I hope this is the case rather than having future generations read the obituary of a once great country whose people allowed it to be destroyed from within by the self serving actions of its leaders of industry and government. History will repeat itself if we do not learn from the past.


  6. Myself, I believe it is time to challenge to a duel.

    As for Carly, Lars, and others.

    Anytime you have a group like Wall Street that throws way too much money at somebody, the inner characteristics of that person come out.

    If they are good, they will do good.
    If they think their ???? doesn’t stink, they will do bad.

    We can’t just blame the tech industry, although I will say this.

    I was thinking about renewing my netflix when I get back to work washing dishes next month, but after reading that, ole Reed Hastings can take a flying leap as I won’t shop at Wal-Mart because of what they do and I will not use Dropbox because of what they do, and now I won’t use netflix as I believe the best way to end their policies is to hit them in the pocketbook and it can be done if enough people will stand up for right rather than wrong.


  7. The moderator was asking the types of questions I think moderators should ask. I would like to have that moderator and then two people on both sides, unlike this case where you had two guests saying the same thing more or less. Although give her credit as a journalist for asking tough questions, it was still a very unbalanced interview.

    As to the guest he won’t own up to the fact there there are numerous studies indicating the H-1b as a whole is a negative sum gain for American tech workers. He won’t own up that there is a proven disparity in wages by numerous sources. He won’t own up to the top sponsors all being labor for hire firms. He won’t own up to the visa being used to prevent free flows of labor by sponsoring companies. He won’t own up that there are fewer black, Hispanic, and female IT workers today than a decade ago. He won’t own up to any of the well established flaws in the program. He doesn’t say it directly, but what he is implying is that black, Hispanic, and women displaced from tech just aren’t smart enough to be in Silicon Valley.

    His position is simple. You either support the unlimited expansion of the H-1b indentured worker visa, or you are a xenophobe.

    People like him are why we can’t have honest and intellectual debate on immigration in this nation. It is McCarthyism in immigration politics.


  8. > But his attitude typifies what I’ve observed among tech CEOs: an arrogance, a sense of entitlement, even a Messiah Complex. Not to mention a completely uncaring attitude.

    Agreed. The completely uncaring attitude seems especially strange since one common theme at is to profile individual immigrants and show how they generally are good, hard-working people who are just seeking opportunity. The unspoken message seems to be “how can anyone deny these good people an opportunity to achieve their dreams”. However, no such concern is shown for American workers who are negatively affected. In fact, the very existence of such workers is generally denied. After all, we are given bogus studies that claim to show that every foreign worker creates 2.62 or 1.83 jobs. Never mind that these numbers are based on carefully cherry-picked time spans (see ). And any American workers who do lose their jobs must, by definition, be lazy freeloaders who are looking to be “held up and carried around”.

    In fact, people like Lars Dalgaard appear to be so arrogant that they believe that a certain type of “entrepreneurs” are the only people who have any value and that we should be striving to achieve a winner-take-all system in which such “entrepreneurs” are rewarded with increasing profits while the serfs fight each other for the leftover scraps. Certainly “entrepreneurs” deserve to be rewarded for truly unique and innovative achievements. But arrogant people like Lars would do well to consider the following extended quote from Warren Buffett:

    I happen to have a talent for allocating capital. But my ability to use that talent is completely dependent on the society I was born into. If I’d been born into a tribe of hunters, this talent of mine would be pretty worthless. I can’t run very fast. I’m not particularly strong. I’d probably end up as some wild animal’s dinner.

    But I was lucky enough to be born in a time and place where society values my talent, and gave me a good education to develop that talent, and set up the laws and the financial system to let me do what I love doing — and make a lot of money doing it. The least I can do is help pay for all that.

    The above quote can be found at .


    • Folks, it is imperative that we realize, just as tells the story of those seeking opportunity, we MUST tell the stories of those that have been displaced or we will lose this battle for our future as Americans in America.

      I have created a Over50AndOutOfWork map at kaaw.
      I have created a DisplacedAmerican category at kaaw.

      Yet nobody will tell their story.

      Fine, if you do not want to tell your story at kaaw for whatever reasons, let me know where you are willing to tell your stories at and I will add mine to your site.

      My point is, as long as nobody will speak out, people assume that it is not happening.

      Or even worse, they believe when they say it is not happening.

      A lot of people are scared to be labeled as being against immigration, and being of german descent, I respect that, which is why we must separate temporary workers on temporary visas from the immigration discussion.

      The generations old saying of United We Stand, Divided We Fall rings true today just as it did in our ancestors time.


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