The Deck Chairs Shuffling Act of 2016

Computerworld reports  on a new H-1B reform bill introduced by Rep. Darrell Issa. As is de rigueur these days, the bill focuses on the market sector I call the Infosyses, the rent-a-programmer companies. The bill’s highlight is apparently to raise the current wage floor that must be paid by H-1B dependent employers, increasing it from $60,000 to $100,000. The article’s quote of Prof. Ron Hira is spot on.

In response to Issa’s bill, Hira said it “will do nothing to eliminate the abuse of the H-1B program. It simply shuffles the deck chairs on the Titanic. Instead of losing their jobs to Tata or Infosys H-1Bs, the Southern California Edison workers would be training their cheaper H-1B replacements employed by IBM or Accenture.”

Nevertheless, the quote and the article as whole somehow miss a question that a 10-year-old would ask: If wages below $100,000 constitute underpayment, why would the requirement be imposed only on a subgroup of H-1B employers? Why is it considered OK for a non-H-1B employer to cheat his workers?

And why would this question be obvious to our hypothetical 10-year-old but not to the adults in Congress, in the press and so on? The answer is that the kid hasn’t been subjected to constant indoctrination that the adults have been bombarded by, with a false message that the Intels (by which I mean the firms that directly employ H-1Bs rather than renting them from the Infosyses) use the visa program responsibly while the Infosyses abuse it.

The article also mentions the recently-introduced Pascrell bill. I am a little surprised that none of the many articles I’ve read on that bill have mentioned that it is identical to the Senate bill by Grassley and Durbin, introduced last November. I have been quite critical of that bill; Pascrell should have done much better.

Finally, an instructive note about Rep. Dana Rohrbacher, coauthor of the Pascrell bill: A reader comment on one of my blog posts states:

Incidentally, I must mention that Dana Rohrabacher (R – Orange County) who has “faced off” with Loretta Sanchez in the past, used to have a great grade with NumbersUSA on the foreign visa category. His grade is now a D-. His area (after redistricting) now includes Irvine and Newport Beach which has tech companies that profit greatly from low cost foreign workers. I was informed that the Lincoln Club of Orange County, who has members that profit from the visa dynamic have threatened Dana. They said they would find someone to run against him should he not support foreign visas. It is amazing to me how these corporate “elites” can get away with this. They need to be exposed.

Those who pressured Rohrbacher presumably were the Intels. If so, you can see why almost all of the bills introduced in the last couple of years limit their “reform” to the Infosyses.

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11 thoughts on “The Deck Chairs Shuffling Act of 2016

  1. Since academic research rely heavily on H-1b, and there they pay and have always paid slightly above poverty wages, there is no push to make an all inclusive 100k limit. That would be a dream job in research!

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  2. According to the ComputerWorld link, “A firm that employs more than 50 people and has 15% or more of its workforce on H-1B visas is categorized by law as H-1B dependent.”

    No-brainer to work around this rule. Just create numerous companies with under 50 employees. I have seen limo companies create separate companies for each individual limo in order to protect their limos from lawsuits resulting from an accident. All the companies share the same address.

    So instead of “Infosys” we will see Infosys1, Infosys2, Infosys3, Infosys4, etc.

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      • It is already happening.
        I don’t have specifics in front of me, but when researching the LCA (Hunting License Applicatdions) I noticed that numerous companies have the same mailing address

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  3. >> Computerworld reports on a new H-1B reform bill introduced by Rep. Darrell Issa

    I wonder what made Issa put in a bill on his own (with IEEE’s support (!) ), and not pursue the one he was supposedly drafting (per Computerworld, in an earlier article) with Lofgren

    Wonder what provisions were in that bill which IEEE did not like…

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  4. There is already a well worn loophole around the H-1B dependent status that many employers that employee a lot of H-1B visa holders use and that is to hire only those with Masters degrees. Smart employers advertise jobs that require a masters degree and for most scientific fields this ensures the only applicants are foreigners that will need an H-1B visa. One of the many benefits to the employer is that H-1B visa holders with masters degrees are considered exempt and don’t count in the math to determine H-1B dependency.

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  5. Because the InfoSyses have a centuries-old hatred of white people, due to British colonization, and will do everything and anything to make sure white Americans never work again. And India has nuclear weapons aimed at America.

    If you think this isn’t about race, you are dead wrong. Beligerent Indian companies come into USA with the intent of reverse colonization and takeover, not to “help America”. The sooner white America understands this, the sooner we can end this nonsense. The first step in fixing a problem is acknowledging there is a problem.

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    • I really disagree. I do understand what you are saying — it’s similar to the resentment people in China have against the West over the Opium Wars — but many Indian-Americans face the same exclusion by the Infosyses.

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  6. “Lincoln Club” looks like just another business lobby group. Just look who are its members and speakers – “business leaders” – i.e. the ones pushing for cheap labor. Where are the “business clubs” that include both business leaders and WORKERS. THOSE “business clubs” don’t exist.

    Hence the outcome that gov’t represents only businesses, NOT people actually doing the work.

    Tell me what the difference is between capitalists demanding near slave-wages and communism with it’s wealth redistribution to workers. Almost none. Both system benefit a privileged elite at the expense of the masses.

    ALL special interest groups MUST be abolished and that includes “business groups” and “business leaders”.

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