2nd month of the 3rd quarter of the 11th year of the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Obama economic depression

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updated: 2014-08-06
 

  "Even so, the federal commitment to academic research remained intact, providing the finances for a system in which annual increases came to be regarded as the natural order of things, equilibrium as a set-back, and decline as catastrophic.   The sums, as we have seen, are colossal in their scale and continually upward." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg88  

 
 
2010 August
UMTWRFS
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29 30 31        

 
  "For decades, the reproductive urge in science and engineering was abetted by policies that sanctified and subsidized the taining of doctoral students, with little or no regard for their employability, except as cheap labor in the academic research system.   A confident belief in infinite demand for science and scientists..." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg89  

 
 

 

 


captain William Scott's flag for the Republic of Texas.

2010 August

2nd month of the 4rd quarter of the 11th year of the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Obama economic depression


 
 

2010-08-01

2010-08-01
CocoaHeads is an international Mac programmer's group.   Meetings are free and open to the public. &nbnsp; We specialize in Cocoa, but everything Mac programming related is welcome.
AustraliaNSWSydneyThursday, 2010 August 5, 18:30
CanadaOntarioOttawa/GatineauThursday, 2010 August 12, 19:00
GermanyRhine-Westphalia AachenThursday, 2010 August 26, 19:00
GermanyBavariaMunichThursday, 2010 August 12, 19:00
GermanyBaden-WuerttembergStuttgartWednesday, 2010 August 18, 19:00
GermanyRhineland-PalatinateTrierTuesday, 2010 August 3, 19:00
USAMIAnn ArborThursday, 2010 August 12, 19:00
USAGAAtlantaThursday, 2010 August 12, 19:00
USACOBoulderTuesday, 2010 August 10, 19:00
USAILChicagoTuesday, 2010 August 10, 19:00
USAOHClevelandMonday, 2010 August 9, 18:00
USACOColorado SpringsThursday, 2010 August 12, 19:00
USAMDColumbiaTuesday, 2010 August 10, 19:00
USAOHColumbusTuesday, 2010 August 10, 2010 21:00
USATXDallasThursday, 2010 August 12, 19:00
USACODenverTuesday, 2010 August 10, 19:00
USAIADes MoinesThursday, 2010 August 12, 19:00
USACALake ForestWednesday, 2010 August 11, 19:00
USACTNew LondonThursday, 2010 August 12, 19:00
USANYNew YorkThursday, 2010 August 12, 18:00
USAORPortlandWednesday, 2010 August 25, 19:00
USACTUpper Connecticut River ValleyThursday, 2010 August 12, 19:00
UKWiltShireSwindonMonday, 2010 August 2, 20:00
Some chapters may have yet to post their meeting for next month. Meeting times may change. Locations and more information.
 
Also be sure to check for an NSCoder Night in your area.
---30---

2010-08-01 Jonathan Freeman
Cocoa Camp in Atlanta 2010-09-25 08:00 to 14:00
"The Atlanta CocoaHeads and Atlanta iOS Developers are organizing the first Cocoa Camp, 2010 September 25, from 08:00 to 14:00.   Aaron Hillegass, of 'Cocoa Programming for Mac OS X', will be giving the opening key-note.   Directions and other information.   We're expecting around 25 sessions in this half day event.   We also encourage other Cocoa developers to start their own Cocoa Camp in their local area.   Hope to see you there!"

2010-08-01
Bertram deSouza _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
Balancing Mahoning Valley's image in light of cases of corruption

2010-08-01
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Obama's proposed $30G small business loan fund
Edmund L. Andrews: Fiscal Times: We Are Currently Not Hiring

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "In the late 1980s and in the 1990s, when the predicted demand did not materialize, and, to the contrary, unemployment and under-employment became the fate of man post-graduates, an inexorable future need for more was confidently, and aggressively, forecast.   As credibility drained out of the shortage warnings, a new rationale was fielded to justify the maintenance, and even the expansion, of the education system: the science and engineering degree should be regarded as a ticket to 'alternative careers'...   When the job market failed to co-operate with this hopeful vocational scenario, realism belatedly won out, many years into the contrived shortage saga.   Noting that the annual production of doctorates in the life sciences exceeded job openings in the universities by 2.5 times and was also in excess of the needs of industry and government, another committee of the National Academy of Sciences diplomatically, but clearly, stated: 'In response to the increasing difficulty of finding employment in traditional sectors, trainees and their mentors have looed to alternative careers, such as law, science writing, science policy and secondary-school teaching.   Our analysis suggests that opportunities in these fields might not be as numerous or as attractive as advocates of alternative careers imply." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pp90-91 (citing _Trends in the Early Careers of Life Scientists_ 1998 pg3)  

 
 

2010-08-02

1776-08-02: Declaration of Independence Signed

2010-08-02
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Leftist congress-critter Fortney "Pete" Stark backs tyranny, violation of oaths of office
Investor's Business Daily
Warner Todd Huston: Chicago Now
Scott Hewitt: Technorati
Tim Alberta: Politico
Washington Examiner
W.C. Varones
Eliabeth Meinecke: Human Events
Shane VanDer Hart: Caffeinated Thoughts
Rush Limbaugh
Mark Whittington
YouTube video

2010-08-02
Deanne Amaden _DoL OPA_
US Department of Labor debars Southland Filipino newspaper from H-1B program: Asian Journal agrees to pay nearly $516,500 to 32 employees plus a $40K penalty

2010-08-02
Bob Murphy _Lew Rockwell_
Krugman's bogus history vs. the reality that Herbert Hoover was a big spender and taxer (with graphs)
William L. Anderson
J.T. Young: Investor's Business Daily

2010-08-02
_Dice_
Dice Report: 65,959 job ads

Total65,959
UNIXNA
WindozeNA
JavaNA
C/C++/Objective-CNA
body shop31,335
full-time temp38,741
part-time temp1,436

 
graphs
 
 
  "As careers evolve and circumstances change, scientists without PhDs succeed as researchers and research managers in industry and government, while some with PhDs in science move to non-scientific fields.   Foreigners, who constitute a large proportion of the doctoral population, remain in the United States in numbers that change with economic and political conditions in their homelands and domestic immigration policies and quotas.   The tracking systems lose sight of many people...   industry and business are less attentive to the credentials of their employees..." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg91  

 
 

2010-08-03

2010-08-03
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Is the era of Fed monetary dinking nearing an end?
John M. Berry: Fiscal Times: Fed running out of options

2010-08-03
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Government Motors notion of "green car" vs. products in demand, and repaying tax-victims with their own money

2010-08-03 07:20PDT (10:29EDT) (14:29GMT)
Dana Blankenhorn _Ziff Davis_/_CBS_
VC money is easy to get these days
"'Smaller amounts lent over longer periods create more patience.'...   Growth rates on even the best companies aren't enough for a VC who needs a good shot at a 10-1 win to justify his investment of money and time...   Of course, the way to get those cheap rates is to not need the money.   But if you're rich money right now is not a problem.   And you shouldn't need a 1,000% return to justify an equity investment, either.   The world is awash in capital, and what was once considered a modest return can justify the investment.   Even open source can get new financing in this environment.   All we need is a working model for how that cheap money gets paid off."

2010-08-03
Paul McDougall _InformationWeek_/_UBM_
US government to spend $36M to train 3K foreign IT workers over-seas
"Following their training, the tech workers will be placed with [cross-border bodyshoppers] in the region that provide off-shore IT and business services to American companies looking to take advantage of the Asian sub-continent's low labor costs.   Under director Rajiv Shah, the United States Agency for International Development will partner with private outsourcers in Sri Lanka to teach workers there advanced IT skills like Enterprise Java (Java EE) programming, as well as skills in business process outsourcing and call center support.   USAID will also help the trainees brush up on their English language proficiency...   As recently as Monday, Obama, speaking at a Democratic fundraiser in Atlanta, boasted about his efforts to reduce offshoring.   The President said he's implemented 'a plan that's focused on making our middle class more secure and our country more competitive in the long run -- so that the jobs and industries of the future aren't all going to [Red China] and India, but are being created right here in the United States of America'.   Obama in January tapped Shah to head USAID.   At the time of his appointment, Shah—whose experience in the development community included senior positions at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation—said the organization needed to focus more on helping developing nations build technology-based economies.   'We need to develop new capabilities to pursue innovation, science, and technology.', said Shah, during his swearing in ceremony.   Sri Lanka's out-sourcing industry is nascent, but growing as it begins to scoop up work from neighboring India.   In addition to home-grown firms, it's attracting investment from Indian outsourcers looking to expand beyond increasingly expensive tech hubs like Bangalore, Hyderabad, and Mumbai.   In 2007, consultants at A.T. Kearney listed the country as 29th on their list of the top 50 global out-sourcing destinations."
David Kramer: Lew Rockwell
"My guess is that most Americans didn't think that some of the new jobs that the current Administration wanted to create were for people who were foreigners in other countries."

2010-08-03 14:21:32PDT (17:21:32EDT) (21:21:32GMT)
Lolita C. Baldor _San Jose CA Mercury "News"_/_AP_
Criminal hackers targeting power plants

2010-08-03 14:29:20PDT (17:29:20EDT) (21:29:20GMT)
Erika Kinetz _San Jose CA Mercury "News"_/_AP_
Telecomm execs object to India's security regulations
"Under guidelines proposed last week, foreign equipment makers must allow regular security inspections and make their network design and source code -- proprietary information used to run a network -- available to the Indian government.   Companies would also be subject to large penalties and black-listing for security breaches, and would have 2 years to replace foreign engineers with local hires."

2010-08-03
Paul Beckett _Wall Street Journal_
Bribe-taking in India

2010-08-03
Greta van Susteren & Charles Grassley _Fox_
How the administration's back-door amnesty plan memo was obtained and where it goes from here

2010-08-03 (5770 Menachem-Ab 23)
Walter E. Williams _Jewish World Review_
Is Profiling Racist?
"We live in a world of imperfect and costly information, and people seek to economize on information costs in a variety of ways.   If we don't take that fact into account, we risk misidentifying and confusing one type of human behavior with another.   Let's look at it.   Pima Indians of Arizona have the world's highest diabetes rates.   With knowledge that his patient is a Pima Indian, it would probably be a best practice for a physician to order more thorough blood glucose tests to screen for diabetes.   Prostate cancer is nearly twice as common among black men as white men.   It would also be a best practice for a physician to be attentive to -- even risk false positive PSAs -- prostate cancer among his black patients.   What about physicians who order routine mammograms for their 40-year and older female patients but not their male patients?   The American Cancer Society predicts that about 400 men will die of breast cancer this year.   Because of a correlation between race, sex and disease, the physician is using a cheap-to-observe characteristic, such as race or sex, as an estimate for a more costly-to-observe characteristic, the presence of a disease.   The physician is practicing both race and sex profiling."

2010-08-03 (5770 Menachem-Ab 23)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
Democrats Bite Democrats part1
Lew Rockwell
Abilene TX Reporter News/Scripps
National Review
One News Now
Detroit MI News
"What Barack Obama and his followers want is called 'comprehensive immigration reform'.   What that amounts to is some form of amnesty up front, combined with a promise to strengthen the border later [i.e. reprehensible immigration law perversion].   That political game has been played for years, and it has roped in some weak-kneed Republicans, as well as being a mainstay of Democratic politics.   Regardless of what immigration policy anyone believes in, the government cannot carry out that policy until after it has first gained control of the borders.   Regardless of what Washington politicians may say about how many immigrants should be allowed into the country, or on what basis, none of that matters when the real decision is in the hands of innumerable other people, who can simply climb over a fence along the border and come on in whenever they feel like it.   Even if they get caught, the most that is likely to happen to them is that they get sent back to try again later.   In many cases in the past, they have been issued legal documents ordering them to appear in court -- and were released inside the United States.   Why anyone would think that people who disregarded the border and the fence would take a piece of paper more seriously defies logic.   That doesn't mean that Washington politicians were stupid.   They were political, which is worse.   The point was to win Hispanic votes, even though not all Hispanics believe in open borders.   President Obama would rather have an issue with which to win the Hispanic vote than to have a bipartisan bill that would simply take control of the borders.   Such a bill would help the country but that obviously takes a back seat in an election year.   Even some members of Obama's own party are uneasy with such cynicism."
 
 

  "An accompanying reason for the prominence of PhD issues in science politics is that doctoral candidates are an essential part of the research enterprise, deeply integrated into the primary task of producing research papers.   PhD candidates qualify for the degree by serving their laboratory chiefs as the scientific equivalent of the stoop labor of agriculture.   And with jobs appropriate to their training and preferences in short supply after they receive the degree, thousands survive as low-paid post-doctoral fellows.   In 1999 _Science_ (the weekly journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science [AAAS]) news report titled 'Cheap Labor Is Key to US Research Productivity', a scientist asked, 'What's the most economical way to finance high-quality research? There's no question.', he answered, 'that you get the biggest bang for your buck by using post-docs' -- scientists who have completed their training and can apply advanced skills to a research project.   Wages for scientists are relatively low, an economist explained, because 'young scientists are more committed to their work than to financial rewards.   They refuse to bail out, even when the job market tightens, creating an excess supply that holds down wages.   And post-docs are on the bottom of that heap.' The low status, low pay, and uncertain futures of the post-doc population evoke sympathy from their better-situated superiors, but little else." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg93  

 
 

2010-08-04

1730-08-04: John Peter Zenger acquitted of sedition

2010-08-04
Courtney Schlisserman _Bloomberg_
CGC: announced job cuts lower than last July
Francine Knowles: Chicago Sun-Times
Reic Risberg: Syracuse NY Post-Standard/AP
Julie Fortier: Financial Post
Henry Unger: Atlanta Journal-Constitution
MS/GE/CNBC
* Planned firings dropped from 2009 July's 97,373 to 41,676 for 2010 July, but up from the 39,358 of 2010 June.
* 339,353 cuts have been announced for 2010 January through July.
* Government and non-profit agencies led sectors with 7,193 announced reductions in July (105,969 year to date, compared to last year's January to July total of 109,433).   Financial firms followed with 5,498.   Transportation 5,331.   Health care/products 2,694.   Food 2,429.   Industrial goods 2,362.   Aerospace and Defense 2,281.   Pharmaceuticals 2,023.   Consumer products 1,424.   Services 1,411.   Telecomm 1,199.   Electronics 1,144.   Energy 696.   Computer 632.   Chemical 314.   (The pharmaceutical industry, has announced 37,010 job cuts year to date compared with last year's 52,683 for the same period.   Financial 15,399 ytd.   Retail 26,993 compared with last year's 88,352 ytd.   Transportation 19,098 compared with last year's 61,578 ytd.   Computer 17,596 compared with last year's 53,145 ytd.)
* CA led all states with 6,853 announced job cuts (55,122 ytd), followed by GA with 3,429.   FL 3,411.   NY 2,619.   TX 2,605.   UT 2,500.   IL had 2,360 (24,602 ytd).   PA 2,274.   MO 2,133.   CT 2,040.   MS 1,704.   AZ 1,656.   AL 1,278.   OH 1,183.   VA 1,103.
* 14,713 were attributed to "restructuring", 7,186 to "cost-cutting", 5,345 to "demand downturn", 4,366 to "closing", 3,867 to "economic conditions", 185 to "out-sourcing", 74 to "voluntary severance", and another 70 to "reorganization/consolidation".
Complete Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc. press release (PDF)
graphs

2010-08-04 12:00PDT (15:00EDT) (19:00GMT)
Ethan Watrall _Chronicle of Higher Education_
5 favorite iPad applications

2010-08-04
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Timothy Geithner in GaGa Land: Is the whole federal government schizo (cut off from reality)?

2010-08-04
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Now They Tell Us: The more we find out about National Socialist Health Care Perversion, the worse it looks
Kevin Hassett: Bloomberg

2010-08-04
W. James Antle iii _American Spectator_
Biased judge Walker: Parts of your constitution are unconstitutional

2010-08-04
Mike Hasten _USA Today_/_Gannett_
Law-suit alleges abuse of Filippino teachers in LA
"'It was a recipe for abuse.', Bauer said, and anytime a Filipino teacher complained, Navarro threatened law-suits and deportation."

2010-08-04 16:01PDT (19:01EDT) (23:01GMT)
Jason Stein _Automotive News_
Ford says it will bring an additional 635 workers into 9 plants by 2012
"The UAW agreement called for 1,559 jobs to be in-sourced to Ford hourly workers throughout the four-year term of the contract.   Ford already has added 1,340 jobs to 24 U.S. plants.   By 2012 it will have added a total of 1,975, the automaker says."

2010-08-04
William L. Anderson
Krugman moves to stifle discussion

2010-08-04
Norm Matloff _H-1B/ L-1/ Off-Shoring News-Letter_
inexplicable move by Obama administration: US government to spend $36M to train 3K foreign IT workers over-seas
As many of you know, I'm a life-long Democrat, but have been profoundly disappointed with both major parties for some time now.   But I must say that the Obama administration has, sadly, out-done itself now, as the linked article shows.
 
Since the dot-com bust in 2000, the Democrats have generally had a policy of supporting H-1B but opposing offshoring.   Though I of course consider that policy contradictory and sadly ill-advised, the relevant point here is that the party has been consistently critical of off-shoring of IT.   As noted in the article, President Obama is no exception, having said a number of times that he wants to reduce the outflow of IT jobs abroad.
 
And yet we see now that the Obama administration is actually training workers in Sri Lanka to work on IT projects for U.S. firms.   And this is more than call centers -- it's a sophisticated form of Java software development.
 
One wonders who suggested this idea to Mr. Shah, and how he could be so politically tone deaf.
Paul McDougall: InformationWeek: US government to spend $36M to train 3K foreign IT workers over-seas

2010-08-04
Bruce Kennedy _Daily Finance_
Corning's strong, flexible Chemcor/Gorilla glass could remake televisions
"Up until about a decade ago, Corning's bread-and-butter product was the optical fiber used in telecommunications -- but that industry shrank dramatically after the tech bubble burst [2000 to 2002]...   Corning has ramped up production of Gorilla glass at its plant in Harrodsburg, KY, and the company just approved about $180M in capital expenditures to expand the plant."

2010-08-04
Kathy Kristof _Fiscal Times_
congress-critters living high on the backs of tax-victims

2010-08-04
David Blaska _WI Isthmus Daily Page_
Conservatives in Academia

2010-08-04 (5770 Menachem-Ab 24)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
Democrats Bite Democrats part2
Front Page Magazine
Real Clear Politics
Manchester NH Union Leader
"Without naming names or making political charges, the Congressional Budget Office last week issued a report titled 'Federal Debt and the Risk of a Fiscal Crisis'.   The report's dry, measured words paint a painfully bleak picture of the long-run dangers from the current runaway government deficits.   The CBO report points out that the national debt, which was 36% of the Gross Domestic Product 3 years ago, is now projected to be 62% of GDP at the end of fiscal year 2010 -- and rising in future years.   Tracing the history of the national debt back to the beginning of the country, the CBO finds that the national debt did not exceed 50% of GDP, even when the country was fighting the Civil War, the First World War or any other war except World War II.   Moreover, a graph in the CBO report shows the national debt going down sharply after World War II, as the nation began paying off its wartime when the war was over.   [OTOH, looked at in a longer historical perspective, we can see that nowhere near as much of the debt was paid off after WW2 as had been paid off after previous wars.]...   Although Barack Obama and members of his administration constantly talk about the so-called 'stimulus' spending as creating a demand for goods that is in turn 'creating jobs', every dime they spend comes from somewhere else, which means that there is less money to create jobs somewhere else.   There is no reason to believe that all this runaway spending is creating jobs -- on net balance.   The fact that the unemployment rate remains stuck at nearly 10% belies the idea that great numbers of jobs are being created -- again, on net balance...   Just paying the interest on a growing national debt can require higher tax rates, which 'would discourage work and saving and further reduce output', according to the CBO."
 
 

  "'Given the problems with forecasting supply and demand for scientists and engineers, predictions of shortages based on such forecasts should be treated with skepticism.' Citing a retrospective study of the 10-15 year forecasts of the demand for engineers that the BLS made in 1960 and 1965, OTA noted that the BLS 'over-projected' by 20% to 55%: 'The errors were caused by the understandable failure of the BLS to anticipate the cut-backs in Federal R&D expenditures in the early 1970s and the recession in the mid-1970s.'   On the supply side, the OTA analysis continued, NSF was far off in the past in estimating future PhD awards in science and engineering, forecasting in 1967 that they would number 30,500 in 1975.   The actual number in that year: 17,784.   But the mid-1980s cautions against crystal-ball gazing failed to quell the ostensibly authoritative warnings of a coming, crippling shortage of PhDs in science and engineering." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg95 (citing OTA 1985 _Demographic Trends and the Scientific and Engineering Work Force: A Technical Memorandum_)  

 
 

2010-08-05

2010-08-05
senator George LeMieux
Federal government debt = $13,301,637,817,150.95 ($13.3T).
Estimated debt per tax-victim = $119,913

2010-08-05 05:30PDT (08:30EDT) (12:30GMT)
Scott Gibbons & Tony Sznoluch _DoL ETA_
un-employment insurance weekly claims report
DoL home page
DoL OPA press releases
historical data
" The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 399,570 in the week ending July 31, a decrease of 14,247 from the previous week.   There were 466,695 initial claims in the comparable week in 2009.   The advance unadjusted insured unemployment rate was 3.5% during the week ending July 24, a decrease of 0.1 percentage point from the prior week.   The advance unadjusted number for persons claiming UI benefits in state programs totaled 4,418,756, a decrease of 152,113 from the preceding week.   A year earlier, the rate was 4.5% and the volume was 6,019,822.   Extended benefits were available in AL, AK, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, DC, FL, GA ID, IL, IN KS, KY, ME, MA, MI, MN, MO, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, OH, OR, PA, PR, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, WA, WV, and WI during the week ending July 17...   States reported 3,314,629 persons claiming EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) benefits for the week ending July 17, an increase of 60,993 from the prior week.   There were 2,830,911 claimants in the comparable week in 2009.   EUC weekly claims include first, second, third, and fourth tier activity.   [Note that the population used for calculating the "insured unemployment rate" changes
to 132,623,886 beginning 2007-10-06;
to 133,010,953 beginning 2008-01-05;
to 133,382,559 beginning 2008-04-05;
to 133,690,617 beginning 2008-07-05;
to 133,902,387 beginning 2008-10-04;
to 133,886,830 beginning 2009-01-03;
to 133,683,433 beginning 2009-04-04;
to 133,078,480 beginning 2009-07-04;
to 133,823,421 beginning 2009-10-03;
to 131,823,421 beginning 2009-10-17;
to 130,128,328 beginning 2010-01-02;
to 128,298,468 beginning 2010-04-03;
to 126,763,245 beginning 2010-07-03.]
graphs
more graphs

2010-08-05
Grace Wyler _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
Turning Technologies audience response software product expanding sales in Europe
"Turning's software, designed at its West Federal Street head-quarters, has rapidly grown in popularity in the United States since the company's inception in 2002.   The software is now used by 67 of the Fortune 100 companies and more than half of the country's higher-education institutions, Broderick said."

2010-08-05
_Wall Street Journal_
Missouri citizens reject National Socialist Health Care Perversion: more people considering bill's deeper implications

2010-08-05
Joseph Lawyer _American Spectator_
Gaming the system: Why some prefer complex legislation and regulation

2010-08-05
Quin Hillyer _American Spectator_
Why not seriously oppose Elena Kagan appointment
"Just BEFORE Reid actually files for cloture, somebody should take the floor and not give it up.   Hold it for 18 straight hours.   Read the actual Constitution alive.   Blast Kagan's ethics and suggest that she pushed at least to the very border-line of perjury in her Senate testimony.   Talk about how she screwed the 2001/09/11 families.   Make a big deal of it.   Attract network attention to the first honest-go-goodness one-man filibuster since Al D'Amato did one in 1992.   Get the public engaged...   Make them explain how they support a partial-birth abortioning, 2001/09/11 family screwing, political pamphlet-banning, First Amendment 'doling', speech 'redistributing', sharia-law supporting, foreign law promoting, gay marriage-by-judicial fiat promoting, ethically challenged, military denying/law-breaking, anti-gun-rights, natural rights denying, woefully inexperienced, Borking supporting, no-government-limiting, racial preference supporting judge who believes it is okay for a judge to 'create rights' and 'try to mold and steer the law in order to promote certain ethical values and achieve certain social ends'.   Just for once, take it to the f*n mat."

2010-08-05 13:00:23PDT (16:00:23EDT) (20:00:23GMT)
Mike Swift _San Jose CA Mercury "News"_
CA supremes rule that age-bias case against Google can go forward
Jonathan Stempel: Reuters

2010-08-05 11:48PDT (14:48EDT) (17:48GMT)
Matt Andrejczak _MarketWatch_
Russia banning wheat exports for 3 months due to drought: Price rises begin to work through product chain with immediate winners and losers
Alex Duval Smith: Manchester Guardian

2010-08-05
Chris Strohm _GovExec_/_Congress Daily_
Senate leftists pushing Immigration Law Perversion bill, throwing distracting bones
"In an apparent effort to counter Republicans, the bill introduced by Senate Democrats Thursday would be paid for by raising fees on foreign companies that hire more than 50% of their U.S. work-force through the H-1B high-skilled visa work program or the L visa program [a microscopic percentages of firms which abuse these visa programs].   'They really use the system in a way it was never intended.', Schumer said of those companies.   Firms would face a fee increase of about $2K for each visa application on foreign workers who constitute more than 50% of their work-force, a Democratic aide said."
Patrick Thibodeau: ComputerWorld/IDG
+ HR6080; Price; "emergency" supplemental appropriations for "border security"
+ S3721; Schumer; "emergency" supplemental appropriations, "Border Security", pork for government employees

2010-08-05
Zach Benoit _Billings MT Gazette_
Cardiothoracic surgeon in Billings teaches VATS mini-maze procedure to pair of physicians from Red China
"Dr. Cui Kaijun, a cardiologist, and Dr. Guo Ying Qiang, a cardiac surgeon, came to Billings from the West China School of Medicine at Sichuan University's West China Hospital.   They spent Thursday afternoon at Billings Clinic with Dr. Scott Needham, a cardiothoracic surgeon, learning a procedure called video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery mini-maze...   Imagine the human heart as a maze and electrical impulses as the mouse running through it.   There's a specific path they're supposed to take that leads to the end, or the heart-beat.   When the mouse takes a wrong turn, it runs into a wall and its path gets interrupted.   When the impulses take an errant path, it can lead to atrial fibrillration...   He said the procedure is 80% to 90% effective in curing atrial fibrillation, a much higher success rate than other treatments, such as medication.   Cui and Guo will be able to take home to [Red China] an effective treatment -- one that is barely practiced in the country -- to a fairly common problem."

2010-08-05
S. Fred Singer _Independent Institute_/_American Thinker_
The Renewable Electricity Standard Is a Hoax, a Fraud, and a Rip-Off
 
 

  "Between 1975 and 1995, the number of universities receiving federal research money rose from 555 to 882.   In the years following 1965, 39 medical schools were founded, bringing the national total to 126, thus enlarging the constituency for the financial main-stay of medical research, the grant-giving NIH...   Colleges and universities that were late arrivals to the science [grant] business writhed under a system that rewarde [the earlier ones]...   guaranteed that the rich got richer.   Of the 3,600 institutions of higher education in the United States, 200 accounted for 94% of all academic research spending in 1995.   6 states -- CA, MI, NY, MA, NJ, and TX -- received half of the $177G that government and industyr spent on R&D in 1995.   Within that grand-total, 13 states received nearly two-thirds of all federal funds for research in universities..." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg100  

 
 

2010-08-06

2010-08-06
Sean Barron _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
Anniversary of signing of Voting Rights Act celebrated

2010-08-06 08:00PDT (11:00EDT) (15:00GMT)
Greg Robb _MarketWatch_
Non-farm pay-rolls drop 131K in July, BLS reports: Private pay-rolls up 71K
graphs

2010-08-06
_Association of Equipment Manufacturers_
Response to job losses
"Generate economic activity by rebuilding and modernizing America's infrastructure -- roads, bridges, sewer, clean water and flood control systems -- starting immediately with the long overdue reauthorization of the federal surface transportation programs. Help our farmers and manufacturers create more jobs in the U.S. by exporting their products to new markets around the world.   One very direct way [NOT] to do this is by passing the pending free trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia."

2010-08-06 10:09PDT (13:09EDT) (17:09GMT)
Catherine Carlock _MarketWatch_
Needs vs. Wants

2010-08-06
Norm Matloff _H-1B/ L-1/ Off-Shoring News-Letter_
USAID facilitating off-shoring to Armenia, too
After hearing the outrageous news the other day that the federal government is subsidizing the off-shoring of IT work to Sri Lanka, it now turns out that the same is occurring in Armenia.
 
Moreover, this new article has a couple of interesting wrinkles.   First, it's happening as we speak, with Jonathan Hale, USAID deputy assistant administrator for Europe & Eurasia, currently on a 4-day trip to Armenia to work these out with the Armenian government.   Second, this article confirms that at least one American company is a partner in the operation.
 
One rather unfortunate point in the article is that union official Sawade seems to buy into the notion that no Americans could do this work without retraining.   The fact is that many of the U.S. un/under-employed already have background like Java EE.
 
My review of the InformationWeek article on the Sri Lanka case.
 
As the saying goes, "Where's the outrage?"
 
Norm
Paul McDougall: InformationWeek: Now It's Armenia: USAID Funds IT In Eurasia: After pledging millions to bolster out-sourcing in South Asia, federal agency extends largesse to a new recipient

2010-08-06
William L. Anderson
Leftists'/Keynesians' addiction to over-taxing and over-spending

2010-08-06
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Further light on the mythical Keynesian multiplier effect

2010-08-06
Jake Filip _Wall Steet Cheat Sheet_
Guide to unemployment statistics
graphs

2010-08-06
Edwin S. Rubenstein _V Dare_
July Jobs: Americans Are the Biggest—and Only—Losers. We Need a Visa Moratorium Now! (has graphs and tables)
"For every 100.0 Hispanics employed in 2001 January there were 124.0 in 2010 July.   For every 100.0 non-Hispanics employed in 2001 January there were 97.8 in 2010 July.   July's VDAWDI equals 126.8 (=100 X 124.0/97.8)."

2010-08-06
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Why do government planners do so poorly?
Freddie Mac requests another $1.8G bail-out: Fannie and Freddie lost a combined $9G in the April-to-June quarter and have needed more than $148G to stay afloat since the government rescued them nearly 2 years ago

2010-08-06
Michael Greenstone & Adam Looney _Brookings Institute_
The Long Road Back to Full Employment: How the "Great Recession" Compares to Previous U.S. Recessions

2010-08-06 (5770 Menachem-Ab 26)
Caroline B. Glick _Jewish World Review_
Hundreds of millions of US tax dollars being used to train, arm and supply armies whose goals is elimination of Israel

2010-08-06
DJIA10,653.50
S&P 5001,121.64
NASDAQ2,288.47
Nikkei9,642
10-year US T-Bond2.83
crude oil$80.70/barrel
gold$1,205.30/ounce
silver$18.47/ounce
platinum$1,570.80/ounce
palladium$487.60/ounce
copper$0.2089375/ounce
natgas$4.47/MBTU
reformulatedgasoline $2.11/gal
heatingoil$2.1517/gal
soybeans$10.335/bushel
maize$4.20/bushel
wheat$7.5525/bushel
dollarindex80.38
yenperdollar85.49
dollarspereuro1.3282
dollarsperpound1.5967
swissfranksperdollar 1.0374
indianrupeesperdollar 46.16
mexicanpesosperdollar 12.6670
MorganStanleyHighTechIndex562.57

I usually get this info from MarketWatch.
 
 
 

  "In the recession year of 1993, when the national unemployment rate stood at 6.8%, unemployment of PhD scientists and engineers was gauged at a trifling 1.2%.   However, the numbers are misleading.   The actual unemployment rate for this group is considerably higher when the category 'invluntarily out of field' (IOF) is taken into consideration.   The overall IOF rate persisted at 2.4% in 1993 and 1995, NSF reported, with a low of 3.3% in the life sciences and 6.3% in the physical sciences.   The real employment picture is even dimmer if the growing practice of serial post-doctoral appointments is recognized as a form of under-emplyment and stock-piling of surplus labor.   As job opportunities failed to keep up with PhD output, the post-doctoral system became a 'holding pattern' for otherwise unemployed young scientists." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg103  

 
 

2010-08-07

2010-08-07
Marc Kovac _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
Ohio governor Strickland issued order banning off-shore out-sourcing
Mark Niquette: Columbus OH Dispatch

2010-08-07
Liz Peek _Fiscal Times_
Hey, Dude. Where's My Job?: Minimum wage increases give harsh lesson in economics to teens
Investor's Business Daily

2010-08-07
Rob Rogers _Billings MT Gazette_/_Lee_
Learning science, technology, engineering and math can be exciting

2010-08-07
Mike Lynch _Adirondack Daily Enterprise_
Little brown bats from MO to Quebec threatened by fungus
Pete Spotts: Christian Science Monitor
Discover
Scientist
BusinessWeek
Brian Handwerk: National Geographic
John Timmer: Ars Technica
Frick, Pollock, Hicks et al.: Science
"the little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus), which is among the most common in North America, and lives in the areas being ravaged by WNS.   At least 6 other species of bats have been affected by WNS, but the little brown bat has an advantage for scientific studies: there are 30 years of data on the animal's numbers at major hibernation spots, and another 16 of breeding and mortality data from a single site...   the fungal pathogen (Geomyces destructans)"

2010-08-07
Gerald Celente _Lew Rockwell_
US citizens have been cheated and betrayed

2010-08-07
Niles Gardiner _London Telegraph_
Obama and his modern-day ancien regime: extravagant and out of touch with the American people
 
 

  "Occupational mobility from related fields is the short-term response to shortages.   The Manhattan Project in WW2, the Apollo prgram in the 1960s, the environmental and energy problems of the 1970s, and the rapid build-up of the semiconductor and computer industries all relied successfuly on the importation of scientific and technical talent from related fields.   Many analysts consider the mobility and adaptability of the Nation's scientific and engineering work force to be one of its greatest strengths." --- OTA 1985 _Demographic Trends and the Scientific and Engineering Work Force: A Technical Memorandum_ pg6 (quoted in Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg105  

 
 

2010-08-08

1902-08-08: Paul A.M. Dirac -- predictor of existence of anti-particles and magnetic monopoles -- was born

2010-08-08
Courtney Denen _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
Claims of widespread job growth disputed
"Some authorities say Youngstown is on the brink of an economic breakthrough, evidenced by a third shift at Lordstown's GM plant, the investments in downtown jobs at VXI's call center and business development at the Youngstown Business Incubator.   Others say the local economy is no better now than the day the mills closed, that the Valley has remained economically stagnant for 33 years.   'Black Monday' hit hard in 1977.   Tens of thousands of jobs were lost, and by 1982 November, Youngstown had the highest unemployment rate in the nation.   Since 1982, the Valley has faced the constant need for jobs...   John Russo, co-author of 'Steel Town USA' and professor of labor studies at Williamson College of Business Administration at Youngstown State University, said local economic development agencies are not realistic.   'They are trying to put a good face on things.'...   'It's almost as though to solve our unemployment problem, we had to create a lot of economic development agencies to hire people to work in these agencies, and the only thing they were doing was developing their own jobs.', McKelvey said.   'When it's all said and done, much more is said than done.', McKelvey said...   Many public-records requests and other inquiries yielded mixed results...   The Ohio Department of Development claimed to have created 2,143 jobs in Region 12 -- Mahoning, Trumbull and Ashtabula counties -- from 2007 January through 2009 December.   To create these jobs, a staff of 5 earned $917,654 in 3 years [$305,885 per year, $61,177 per staffer per year, on average].   Katie Sabatino, public information officer for communications and marketing division of the Ohio Department of Development, said via e-mail, 'Some of these projects are proposed jobs that are to be created in the near future.'   The Regional Chamber says it created 1,052 new jobs in 20 different companies in 2009...   Heather McMahon, communications director for Ryan's office, said though there are no quick fixes in economic development, small businesses are the future of the economy.   'When Delphi came in the mid-1960s they hired 14K [people] to start working there.   That's just not being done in America anymore.', McMahon said."

2010-08-08
Patrick O'Donnell _Youngstown OH Vindicator_/_Cleveland OH Plain Dealer_
Ohio government employee pension funds ask for government bail-out, refuse to open their account-books to scrutiny
Dayton OH Daily News

2010-08-08
Margo Rutledge Kissell _Dayton Daily News_
high turn-over in K-12 students is a problem
"Some of the districts see an average turn-over rate of 30% to 52% of their students each year.   Children are bouncing from troubled school to troubled school, with few moving up to better performing schools.   Students moving from one building to another tend to have lower reading scores...   The concept of a common curriculum was floated by Tom Lasley, executive director of EDvention, a collaborative dedicated to accelerating science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) talent in the Dayton area, and former dean of UD's school of Education and Allied Professions was involved in the study."

2010-08-08 02:43PDT (05:43EDT) (09:43GMT)
Hugo Miller, Mourad Haroutunian & Anthony DiPaola _Bloomberg_
Saudia Arabia government thugs extend dead-line for BlackBerry to provide them with means to violate privacy of BlackBerry users
Souhail Karam: Reuters
BBC
Douglas McIntyre: Daily Finance
"Saudi Arabia delayed shutting off Research In Motion Ltd.'s BlackBerry instant messaging until midnight tomorrow, giving operators time to test a system that can monitor user data, the state-run Saudi Press Agency said...   The United Arab Emirates, India [Lebanon, Algeria,] and Indonesia have also expressed concern that such mobile communications could be used to violate laws or national mores...   RIM said in a statement Aug. 4 that it cooperated with governments around the world with standard practices and that any reports it gave special access or information to certain authorities were inaccurate.   Marisa Conway, a RIM spokes-woman in New York, declined to make any further comment when contacted by Bloomberg News...   Turkey's telecommunications regulator Aug. 6 said there are 'serious' security weaknesses related to BlackBerry services in the country, adding that it has set up a committee to look into the matter.   The U.A.E. said in a statement Aug. 4 that it wouldn't be changing its decision to ban BlackBerry service in October and that it was open to discussions aimed at achieving a solution to the issue...   RIM said Aug. 4 that it couldn't meet requests from governments that it reveal codes for reading some users' communications.   The corporate service was designed to prevent RIM, or anyone else, from reading encrypted information.   'In some sense, the Saudi drama has been over-blown as the government is already monitoring every other handset maker in the region offering SMS and e-mail, which it can monitor.', said Tero Kuittinen, an analyst with MKM Partners in Greenwich, CT.   He has a 'buy' rating on the stock.   [Blackberry's encrypted data is stored in Canada, the home country of manufacturer RIM, out of reach of third party monitoring.]"

2010-08-08
Jon Boone _Manchester Guardian_/_The Observer_
10 medical workers killed by terrorists in northern Afghanistan Friday
"The Taliban claimed responsibility for the murders, saying the group had been trying to convert Afghans to Christianity, but local police said they believed thieves were to blame.   General Agha Noor Kemtuz, the local police chief, told the Observer that the group had stopped for lunch in a heavily forested area at around 2pm when they were robbed.   The team, which included six Americans, one German and two Afghans, were returning to Kabul after a two-week mission to provide basic health-care in remote mountain valleys in Nuristan.   According to the sole survivor, an Afghan man called Safiullah, the attackers first took their money and then lined them up to be shot.   Kemtuz said Safiullah had been spared after he cried out passages from the Qur'an and pleaded: 'I am a Muslim. Don't kill me.'"

2010-08-08
_Billings MT Gazette_/_AP_
USDA planning to demand national ID for live-stock that cross state lines: No word on whether it will be applied to human bodies shopped across borders
"Official animal identification tags could come from 3 places: the National Uniform Ear Tagging System utilized by programs such as brucellosis prevention; the 15-digit international standard numbering system; or a numbering system compatible with the USDA's National Scrapie Eradication Program for sheep and goats."

2010-08-08
"Professor Pennywise" _Chronicle of Higher Education_
A Short Recent History of the US Economy
 
 

  "In science one tries to tell people, in such a way as to be understood by everyone, something that no one ever knew before.   But in poetry, it's the exact opposite." --- Paul Adrien Maurice Dirac  

 
 

2010-08-09

2010-08-09
_Florida agency for WorkForce Innovation_
Work Opportunity Tax Credit
"The Work Opportunity Tax Credit Program (WOTC) offers private for profit employers an opportunity to earn a federal income tax credit for hiring individuals from certain target groups.   The program is also designed to help job-seekers who consistently have a particularly high unemployment rate, enter employment.   By hiring individuals from these targeted groups, employers can reduce their taxes up to $2,400 or $4,800 during the first year of employment or up to $9K over 2 years, depending on the qualified applicant.   The targeted groups are: Qualified Temporary Assistance to Needy Families Recipients, Qualified Veterans/Disabled Veterans, Qualified Ex-felons, Designated Community Residents, Vocational Rehabilitation Referrals, Qualified Summer Youths, Qualified Food Stamp Recipients, Qualified Supplemental Security Income Recipients and Long-Term Family Assistance Recipients.   The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 expand WOTC to include 2 new targeted groups: disconnected youth and unemployed veteran."

2010-08-09
Edwin S. Rubenstein _V Dare_
Deportations of Illegal Aliens Have Been Decreasing under Obama Admin (with table, graph)
"Fiscal 2010, which started on 2009 October 1, and is Obama's first full year, is on course to be the first since FY2002 in which deportations will have declined...   The largest decline—16%—occurred in May.   As of this writing the ICE web-site provides deportation numbers through 2010 July 22.   Prorating the 22 days of July you get a full month total of 19,200 deportations, which is 45% below the 34,819 deportations recorded in 2009 July...   To be sure, not all types of deportations have declined.   Convicted criminal removals rose 37% in the first nine months of FY2010 compared to the same period of FY2009...   Reality check: most of the rise in criminal deportations is attributable to the Secure Communities program, a Bush initiative inherited by Mr. Obama.   While ICE takes full credit for expanding the program, the real impetus comes from state and local governments.   They are sick and tired of footing the bill for holding illegal aliens in their lock ups.   But 'Non-criminal' deportations fell to 142,100 in the first nine months of FY2010, from 188K in the same period last year—a 24% decline.   This category includes illegals busted in workplace raids or identified by those employer audits that ICE claims are a more effective way to enforce immigration laws in the work-place.   Even in the Great Depression, there are far more illegal aliens working than in jail in the U.S.A.   It is scandalous that their deportations are declining while American unemployment remains at such historic highs."
xls spread-sheet

2010-08-09
_ICE_
Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System (IAFIS), Automated Biometric Identification System (IDENT) have been integrated

2010-08-09
_National Sheriffs' Association_
National Sheriffs' Association expresses support for ICE criminal alien enforcement efforts
"In a resolution adopted on June 29 during a meeting in Anaheim, CA, the NSA membership affirmed their support for ICE's Secure Communities and 287( g ) programs. The resolution noted, in part, that the programs serve to 'effectively and accurately identify and remove criminal aliens from the U.S.A.' while upholding civil rights and civil liberties."

2010-08-09
_Morning Sun_/_Jacksonville Daily News_
Finger-print sharing system can stop criminals
"Law enforcement officials have been asked to provide finger-prints of people who are arrested to immigration officials.   Some, including the San Francisco sheriff, have balked at the request, and the Washington, DC, City Council enacted a resolution blocking its use by DC police...   the reviews are part of a larger Secure Communities initiative to identify criminals of all types.   The fingerprints are to be shared with the Department of Homeland Security, which now oversees America's immigration agencies, as well as with the FBI.   The prints are to be checked against federal criminal records as well as immigration data.   The initiative began in 2007 under the George W. Bush administration.   To date, most law enforcement agencies have not begun the practice; it's being done in 467 jurisdictions in 26 states, a small percentage of the thousands of cities, counties and parishes that comprise local political subdivisions in this country.   But the Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced that it wants to be getting data from all of the nation's jails by 2013.   Many Americans -- including some of those now expressing outrage -- have long called for better information sharing among the nation's policing agencies.   Countless crimes have been committed by people who had been released from police custody on other charges because their criminal history didn't show on a standard background check.   Many suspects have been in custody and then released because the fact that they were wanted for a crime wasn't available to all law enforcement agencies.   If the Secure Communities initiative includes full sharing of criminal data by all law enforcement agencies, then it is hard to find fault with its implementation.   That's exactly what we've been asking for since before the 2001/09/11 terrorist attacks.   And as long as our nation's immigration laws and policies are on the books, we must expect that they will be enforced."

2010-08-09
Steve Johnson _San Jose CA Mercury "News"_
Micro-processor chip industry booming
"The Semiconductor Industry Association last week reported that worldwide chip sales for the first half of 2010 hit $144.6G, more than 50% higher than the same period a year ago.   And while that rate of growth is expected to slow in the second half of the year, the association predicted that 2010 sales would wind up being about 28% more than in 2009.   Research firm IC Insights recently estimated that 2010 global chip sales eventually will hit $310G, a $72G increase over 2009, which the firm called the biggest jump in annual sales in the industry's history."

2010-08-09
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Obama's national socialist health care perversion considered as dispassionately as possible

2010-08-09
_FAIR US_/_Right Side News_
Update on US immigration legislation: House, Senate Pass Competing "Border Security" Bills Before Recess: ICE Union Takes Unanimous Vote of "No Confidence" in government management: Republican Leaders Voice Support for Re-Examining Birthright Citizenship
"In the scathing release, the ICE union also accuses Director Morton and Assistant Director Coven of:   Dedicating more time to immigration reforms aimed at large-scale amnesty legislation, than advising the public and Federal law-makers of the severity of the illegal immigration problem;   Misleading the public regarding the effectiveness of the Secure Communities program and using it as a selling point to move forward with amnesty legislation;   Refusing to alert Congress as to the severity of the problem regarding criminal aliens and to request additional resources to provide better enforcement and support of local agencies;   Prohibiting the majority of ERO agents from making arrests or enforcing United States immigration laws outside of the institutional (i.e. jail) setting; and Implementing detention reforms that have created a resort like living conditions to criminal aliens."

2010-08-09
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
What are the leftists aiming to do?
"their fiscal and monetary policies impede creation of jobs and re-hiring of laid-off workers.   It should be obvious by now that reducing unemployment is not their objective."

2010-08-09
William L. Anderson
Conflicting visions of government as creator of light or darkness

2010-08-09
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Why Government Programs Are Stalling Employment
Michael P. Fleischer: Wall Street Journal
"When you add it all up, it costs $74K to put $44K in Sally's pocket and to give her $12K in benefits.   Bottom line: Governments impose a 33% surtax on Sally's job each year."

2010-08-09
Mark Whitehouse _Wall Street Journal_
Employers Demanding More Skills at Lower Wages and Worse Working Conditions
mark.whitehouse@wsj.com
mark . whitehouse @ wsj . com

2010-08-09
Erin Rosa _NarcoNews_
Algore and the Mexican government don't support freedom of the press
 
 

  "The unemployment situation facing young people in mathematics is far worse than the dismal unemployment statistics for any single year's class suggest.   Consider the invisible 'unemployed'.   There is already the quivalent of several years' annual PhD production embedded in the wood-work of US colleges and universities as post-docs, part-time faculty, adjunct faculty, and, of course, the actively unemployed...   At current hiring levels it would take several years to absorb this back-log, even if ALL PhD production suddenly ceased." --- 1995 August "Myths in Math" _Notices of the American Mathematical Society_ (quoted in Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg107)  

 
 

2010-08-10

2010-08-10
Mychal Massie _World Net Daily_
The penalty for pushers of amnesty for illegal aliens

2010-08-10 05:46PDT (08:46EDT) (12:46GMT)
Chris Oliver _MarketWatch_
Red China's trade surplus increased to $28.7G on export surge

2010-08-10 08:26PDT (11:26EDT) (15:26GMT)
Steve Goldstein _MarketWatch_
There can be no recovery without jobs

2010-08-10
Joseph Farah _World Net Daily_
birthers have won victory in public opinion

2010-08-10
Patrick J. Buchanan _World Net Daily_
activist judges impose their morality... or lack thereof rather than adhering to US constitution and laws

2010-08-10
Kartik Goyal, Unni Krishnan, Sam Nagarajan, & Indranil Ghosh _BusinessWeek_
Indian government goes ballistic over US bill that would make microscopic reduction in discrimination against US workers in the USA
Erika Kinetz: Forbes/AP
Bruce Einhorn: BusinessWeek

2010-08-10
Coey Boles _Wall Street Journal_
"Border Secuity" measure passed US House
Dena Bunis: Orange County CA Register
Jim Abrams: San Francisco CA Examiner/AP
Wendell Goler: Fox
Beth Bacheldor: CIO
"The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday unanimously approved a $600M measure to boost border security on the U.S. southern border, a move Democrats hope is the first step toward a broader overhaul of the country's immigration laws.   The cost of the legislation is offset by a hefty increase in fees paid by primarily technology companies that hire highly skilled foreign workers under the H-1B visa program.   Those firms with more than 50 workers and with more than 50% of those employees from abroad would see the current $320 fee per visa application jump to $2K.   Backers of the fee increase argued that the fee increase would help create more U.S. jobs in competitive sectors like technology.   The extra funding for border security would hire more border guards, boost federal agents in the region and increase the number of manless drones used to conduct surveillance of the border area...   The border security bill is identical to the one the Senate passed last Thursday before it went home for its summer recess.   But because the Constitution requires that all bills that raise money begin in the House of Representatives and the Senate bill raises revenue by increasing some business visa fees, the House had to enact a new bill.   The bill approved today, HR6080, will have to be voted on by the Senate when it returns in September."
+ HR6080; Price; "emergency" supplemental appropriations for "border security"
+ S3721; Schumer; "emergency" supplemental appropriations, "Border Security", pork for government employees
"Sec. 402. (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act or any other provision of law, during the period beginning on the date of the enactment of this Act and ending on 2014 September 30, the filing fee and fraud prevention and detection fee required to be submitted with an application for admission as a non-immigrant under section 101(a)(15)(L) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(L)) shall be increased by $2,250 for applicants that employ 50 or more employees in the United States if more than 50% of the applicant's employees are nonimmigrants admitted pursuant to section 101(a)(15)(H)(i)(b) of such Act or section 101(a)(15)(L) of such Act.   (b) Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act or any other provision of law, during the period beginning on the date of the enactment of this Act and ending on 2014 September 30, the filing fee and fraud prevention and detection fee required to be submitted with an application for admission as a non-immigrant under section 101(a)(15)(H)(i)(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(H)(i)(b)) shall be increased by $2K for applicants that employ 50 or more employees in the United States if more than 50% of the applicant's employees are such nonimmigrants or nonimmigrants described in section 101(a)(15)(L) of such Act."
CIOL
Anand Sharma, Union Minister for Commerce and Industry in a letter to US Trade Representative, Mr. Ron Kirk today, has expressed serious concern over the proposed legislation S3721.   Executives of cross-border bodyshops based in India strike out at visa filing fee and fraud prevention and detection fee.

2010-08-10
_BLS_
In 2010Q2 US productivity dropped 0.9% seasonally adjusted and annualized; output rose 2.6%, hours increased 3.6%
"The second-quarter gain in hours worked was the largest since the first quarter of 2006 when hours rose 4.1%.   From the second quarter of 2009 to the second quarter of 2010, both productivity and output increased 3.9%; hours were unchanged (tables A and 2).   Labor productivity, or output per hour, is calculated by dividing [a bogus national income and products accounts] index of real output by an index of hours worked of all persons, including employees, proprietors, and unpaid family workers.   Data in this release reflect the regular multi-year revision to the [bogus] National Income and Product Accounts (NIPA) released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis of the U.S. Department of Commerce on 2010 July 30."

2010-08-10
Luke Johnson _Florida Independent_
Marco Rubio announces his opposition to changing the 14th Amendment to end "anchor baby" scam

2010-08-10
_Investor's Business Daily_
The Federal Reserve throws in the towel, cranks up the inflation machine

2010-08-10
Susan M. Sipprelle
Over 50 and Out of Work

2010-08-10 (5770 Menachem-Ab 30)
Cal Thomas _Town Hall_
Vigilante Law
Patriot Post
Fresno CA Bee
World Magazine
Indiana PA Gazette
Free Republic
Worthington MN Daily Globe
Jewish World Review
The Citizen

2010-08-10 (5770 Menachem-Ab 30)
Frank J. Gaffney _Jewish World Review_
Coming to grips with shariah
"the Mayor seemingly is indifferent to whether the funding for the mosque sponsored by the Cordoba Initiative (named for the capital city of the Moorish conquerors of Spain and the site where they triumphally transformed a Catholic church into a massive mosque) might be the Saudis, with their version of Shariah known as Wahhabism...   as is true of, by some estimates, 80% of the mosques in America -- the Ground Zero Mosque is going to fit the profile of a Wahhabi-associated facility.   The challenge of assuring public awareness of the Shariah threat would be hard enough if the only impediment were ill-informed politicians and journalists.   Matters are made much worse by the skill with which Shariah's adherents dissemble, or simply lie...   among other Constitution-affronting features, Islamic law prohibits democratic law-making.   It requires the replacement of constitutions and governments like ours with a global theocracy governed by Islamic law.   It brutalizes women and otherwise treats them as second-class citizens and authorizes the murder of homosexuals and apostates.   Shariah is, in short, wholly incompatible with our legal system, freedoms and way of life...   Look no further than the NYPD report for a reality check.   It reported that: 'This [Shariah] ideology is proliferating in Western democracies at a logarithmic rate.   The Internet, certain Salafi-based non-governmental organizations, extremist sermons/study groups, Salafi literature, jihadi videotapes, extremist-sponsored trips to radical madrassas and militant training camps abroad have served as extremist incubators for young, susceptible Muslims -- especially ones living in diaspora communities in the West.'"

2010-08-10 (5770 Menachem-Ab 30)
Rabbi Doctor Asher Meir _Jewish World Review_
Ethics of "paid volunteer" employees

2010-08-10 (5770 Menachem-Ab 30)
Walter E. Williams _Jewish World Review_
What Hand-Outs To Cut
"Because of failure to heed the limitations of the U.S. Constitution, which has produced runaway federal spending, our nation sits on the precipice of disaster.   Former senator Alan Simpson of Wyoming and Erskine Bowles, White House chief of staff under president Bill Clinton, co-chairmen of president Obama's debt and deficit commission, in a Washington Post article 'Obama's Debt Commission Warns of Fiscal Cancer' (2010 July 12) said that '(A)t present, federal revenue is fully consumed by 3 programs: Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.   The rest of the federal government, including fighting two wars, homeland security, education, art, culture, you name it, veterans -- the whole rest of the discretionary budget is being financed by [Red China] and other countries.'   The commission added the current budget trend is a disaster 'that will destroy the country from within' unless checked by tough action in Washington.   The tough action required is spending cuts in programs, including the so-called nondiscretionary, eating most of the federal revenues.   According to the Census, around 80% of Americans 65 and older own their own homes compared to 43% under 35. [Only] 23M households, or 37% of all homeowners, own their homes free and clear, and most of these are seniors aged 65 and older.   According to the Federal Reserve Board's 2007 'Survey of Consumer Finances', the median net worth of people 65 and over is $232K, those under 35 years have a net worth of $12K and for those 35-44, it's $87K."

2010-08-10 (5770 Menachem-Ab 30)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
Cheering Immaturity (vs. Performance)
World Net Daily
Redding Record SearchLight
Lew Rockwell
"Since Hunter College High School selects its applicants from the whole city on the basis of their test scores, 'luck' seems a strange way to characterize why some students are admitted and many others are not.   If you can't tell the difference between luck and performance, what has your education given you, except the rhetoric to conceal your confusion from others and perhaps from yourself?...   Native intelligence may indeed not vary by neighborhood but actual performance -- whether in schools, on the job or elsewhere -- involves far more than native intelligence.   Wasted intelligence does nothing for an individual or society.   The reason a surgeon can operate on your heart, while someone of equal intelligence who is not a surgeon cannot, is because of what different people actually did with their intelligence...   If 'luck' is involved, it is the luck to be born into families and communities whose values and choices turn out to be productive for themselves and for others who benefit from the skills they acquire.   Observers who blame tests or other criteria for the demographic imbalances which are the rule -- not the exception -- around the world, are blaming whatever conveys differences for creating those differences.   They blame the messenger who brings bad news.   If test scores are not the same for people from different backgrounds, that is no proof that there is something wrong with the tests.   Tests do not exist to show what your potential was when you entered the world but to measure what you have actually accomplished since then, as a guide to what you are likely to continue to do in the future.   Tests convey a difference that tests did not create.   But the messenger gets blamed for the bad news."
 
 

  "[NSF director Erich Bloch] was a mere bachelor of science, in electrical engineering, from an institution of no great renown, the University of Buffalo, which he attended after studying at the Federal Polytechnic Institute in Zurich, Switzerland (where he spent his youth as a refugee from Nazi Germany).   The new director's lack of the PhD was noted in the upper echelos of academic lobbying, which regarded NSF as its own bastion in Washington [DC]...   In 1984, en route to retirement from IBM at 59, Bloch was awaiting appointment as deputy director... when Director Edward Knapp unexpectedly resigned..." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg109  

 
 

2010-08-11

2010-08-11 06:59PDT (09:59EDT) (13:59GMT)
Karvy Global _The Street_
India-based cross-border bodyshops, NASSCOM continue hissyfit over small reform in H-1B visa fees

2010-08-11 08:08:55PDT (11:08:55EDT) (15:08:55GMT)
Alan Zibel _San Jose CA Mercury "News"_/_AP_
Median home prices have been rising
DC Sun Gazette
Baltimore MD Sun
Bank Rate
Chicago Sun-Times

2010-08-11
Jim Buchta _Minneapolis MN Star-Tribune_
Minneapolis home-sellers cutting asking prices

2010-08-11 10:18PDT (13:18EDT) (17:18GMT)
Cynthia Lin _MarketWatch_
Robert Shiller sees yet another down-turn if US employment rates do not increase

2010-08-11 12:06PDT (15:06EDT) (19:06GMT)
Robert Schroeder _MarketWatch_
US government deficit was $165G in July
"Outlays totaled $321G in the month, while receipts were $156G.   [Across the whole period from 1789 to 1902, total federal government expenditures totaled about $17G, including paying off debts from the American Revolution, funding the War of 1812, the Mexican War, the Civil War, and the Spanish-American War.]"

2010-08-11 14:29PDT (17:29EDT) (21:29GMT)
Greg Robb _MarketWatch_
US trade deficit increased to $49.9G in June
"Separately, President Barack Obama on Wednesday signed legislation that he said would reduce certain tariffs on materials needed by U.S. companies to make their products.   The National Association of Manufacturers said studies show that the legislation will boost production by $4.6G."

2010-08-11
Bruce Einhorn _BusinessWeek_
Red China has illegal alien problem, too

2010-08-11
Catherine Ngai _Medill school of journalism NorthWestern U_
Chicago job seekers move "offices" from coffee shops to libraries
"The number of active card holders jumped to 1.82M as of 2009 December, an increase of approximately 8% from 2008, according to the Chicago Public Library...   about 60% of Internet use there is related to job-hunting, and the library has a program to help...   The unemployment situation in Cook County is among the worst in the nation.   The region lost 111,100 jobs from 2008 December to 2009 December, placing it third in the number of jobs lost out of a list of the 334 largest counties in the nation, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.   The Chicago metropolitan-area unemployment rate dropped year-over-year in June for the first time in 38 months to 10.6% from 10.9%, the Illinois Department of Employment Security reported in July...   The number of patrons who sought such help increased approximately 10% to 24,173 in the first 3 months of this year, compared with the same period in the prior year, even though library hours were reduced because of budget cuts."

2010-08-11
Norm Matloff _H-1B/ L-1/ Off-Shoring News-Letter_
Schumer bill is blatant scape-goating
As some of you may have read, Senator Schumer has introduced a measure that would fund beefed-up border security through a new H-1B employer fee, imposed on the rent-a-programmer "bodyshops".   He used the pejorative term "chop shops" [rather than the pejorative term "bodyshops"] to describe them, and said that they "don't play by the rules", implying that the mainstream employers of H-1Bs act responsibly.   Most of the body-shops are owned by ethnic Indians.   As pointed out in the articles [linked] below, they are offended at what they consider a discriminatory bill -- and I agree with them.   [The "chop shops" statement makes it clear that Schumer doesn't understand the issues thoroughly enough to remember the term, not that he was comparing bodyshoppers to car thieves who sell off their booty in pieces...jgo]
 
Some H-1B reform activists were quite pleased to find that Schumer had finally taken some action against H-1B, after consistently being a very vocal supporter of expansion of H-1B and employer-sponsored green card programs.   But I consider it a setback for reformers, as well as scapegoating and worse.
 
This has long been a tactic of the industry lobbyists and their allies in Congress -- blame the Indians.   I first noticed this back in 1998, when representative Zoe Lofgren made disparaging remarks about the Indian firms at a hearing on H-1B.   Since then there has been a constant theme from the lobbyists that the Wipros and Tatas of the industry abuse the H-1B program while the Intels and MSFTs don't.   [I would say, however, that firms that contract with bodyshops as well as bodyshops, themselves, are abusing by the nature of bodyshopping, itself, whether totally domestic or across borders...jgo]
 
For those readers here who are not techies, let me state -- once again! -- that abuse of the H-1B program is not limited to the Indian bodyshops, nor to bodyshops in general.   On the contrary, almost every employer of H-1Bs is abusing the program, definitely including the household-name main-stream firms.   The latter may be more subtle about it and often hire a higher class of worker, but they are basically all abusing the system, hiring visa workers instead of U.S. citizens and permanent residents, in order to save money.
 
The problem, as usual, is not failure to "play by the rules," but on the contrary aggressive exploiting the rules, using loop-holes.   I think Schumer knows this, not only because he's part of the body that wrote those rules, but also because if he really felt it was a rule-breaking problem, he'd move to punish the rule-breakers, rather than paint all the Indian firms with such a broad brush.   No doubt about it; this is deliberate grandstanding and obfuscation.
 
Now concerning those rules, I'm sure most people would readily believe that any firm such as, say, Intel makes aggressive use of loop-holes in the tax code.   Well, the same is true for loop-holes in the immigration code, as I've shown before, such as the Intel case in my article on Intel and what they pay H-1Bs.
 
I've shown the irresponsible behavior in foreign labor programs of MSFT, Cisco, the [Bank of India], etc.   See for instance:
Cohen & Grigsby and "prevailing wage"
Bank of India and Vivek Wadhwa
Audit of Fragomen et al.
MSFT claim belied part 1
MSFT claim belied part 2
 
So while the Indian firms are hardly blameless, they are only a small part of the general H-1B problem -- 12%, to be exact, according to the Washington Post figures below.   Moreover, as Ron Hira points out in Computerworld an additional fee of $2K, whether imposed just on the Indians or the field as a whole, would have no impact anyway, since the salary savings accrued by hiring H-1Bs are far greater than that even in one year, not to mention multiplied by the six-year-plus life of the visa.
 
As mentioned earlier, the industry lobbyists love to scapegoat the Indian firms, to shift the spotlight away from themselves.   That's what makes the Schumer proposal so insidious:   It gives Congress a chance to wash its hands of the H-1B issue, declaring victory and leaving the scene.   Schumer, who announced several months ago plans to introduce legislation to expand the H-1B and employer-sponsored green card programs, can now do so and say that he took care of the abuses.
 
This bill is misleading at best, and exhibits an unhealthy racial attitude at worst.   H-1B reform activists should not be making common cause with senator Schumer on this legislation.
 
Norm
Ariana Eunjung Cha: Washington DC Post: Indian government calls H-1B visa fee hike 'discriminatory'
Rama Lakshmi: Washington DC Post
+ HR6080; Price; "emergency" supplemental appropriations for "border security"
+ S3721; Schumer; "emergency" supplemental appropriations, "Border Security", pork for government employees
Tata median salaries by city
Wipro median salaries by city
Infosys median salaries by city

2010-08-11 (5770 Elul 01)
R' Hillel Goldberg _Jewish World Review_
How to talk to a neo-Nazi
 
 

  "Drawing upon population statistics [NSF PRA's Myles Boylan] and colleagues calculated that because of the 'baby bust' that began in the early 1960s, the United States faced what they termed a 'short-fall' of 675K bachelor of science and engineering graduates between 1986 and 2010.   (In some renditions, the latter date varied.)   Keyed to domestic birth statistics, the pipe-line controversy virtually ignored the continuing abundance of foreign-born personnel iin the American research enterprise [and the US-born citizens eager to respond to incentives].   The immigrant population, trained abroad or in the USA, has durably accounted for a sizable portion of the nation's working scientists and engineers since WW2, and has demonstrated high 'stay rates', contrary to alarmist warnings of an impending exodus to the homelands...   fewer new-borns would tanslate into fewer bachelor's degrees, leading to a decline in master's and doctoral degrees.   [Peter House], however, introduced more confusion into this debate..." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg117  

 
 

2010-08-12

2010-08-12 05:30PDT (08:30EDT) (12:30GMT)
Scott Gibbons & Tony Sznoluch _DoL ETA_
un-employment insurance weekly claims report
DoL home page
DoL OPA press releases
historical data
"The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 420,997 in the week ending Aug. 7, an increase of 18,862 from the previous week.   There were 482,590 initial claims in the comparable week in 2009.   The advance unadjusted insured unemployment rate was 3.4% during the week ending July 31, a decrease of 0.1 percentage point from the prior week.   The advance unadjusted number for persons claiming UI benefits in state programs totaled 4,296,612, a decrease of 154,102 from the preceding week.   A year earlier, the rate was 4.4% and the volume was 5,896,062.   Extended benefits were available in AL, AK, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, DC, FL, GA ID, IL, IN KS, KY, ME, MA, MI, MN, MO, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, OH, OR, PA, PR, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, WA, WV, and WI during the week ending July 24...   States reported 4,493,351 persons claiming EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) benefits for the week ending July 24, an increase of 1,158,473 from the prior week.   There were 2,867,229 claimants in the comparable week in 2009.   EUC weekly claims include first, second, third, and fourth tier activity.   [Note that the population used for calculating the "insured unemployment rate" changes
to 132,623,886 beginning 2007-10-06;
to 133,010,953 beginning 2008-01-05;
to 133,382,559 beginning 2008-04-05;
to 133,690,617 beginning 2008-07-05;
to 133,902,387 beginning 2008-10-04;
to 133,886,830 beginning 2009-01-03;
to 133,683,433 beginning 2009-04-04;
to 133,078,480 beginning 2009-07-04;
to 133,823,421 beginning 2009-10-03;
to 131,823,421 beginning 2009-10-17;
to 130,128,328 beginning 2010-01-02;
to 128,298,468 beginning 2010-04-03;
to 126,763,245 beginning 2010-07-03.]
graphs
more graphs

2010-08-12
William K. Alcorn _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
Homelessness Hits Home

2010-08-12
Dan Levy _Bloomberg_
Foreclosure crisis

2010-08-12
_Rolla MO Daily News_
"Border security" bill sent to Obama for signing
+ HR6080; Price; "emergency" supplemental appropriations for "border security"
+ S3721; Schumer; "emergency" supplemental appropriations, "Border Security", pork for government employees

2010-08-12
Norm Matloff _H-1B/ L-1/ Off-Shoring News-Letter_
update on Schumer bill
Yesterday I reported on a bill by senator Schumer that would fund enhancement of border security by a new H-1B employer fee.   I made the following main points:

  1. Schumer gave the impression that the main abusers of H-1B are the "bodyshops", the rent-a-programmer firms.   This is FALSE, and the main-stream firms are just as culpable.
  2. Point 1 has been a common theme with industry lobbyists since at least as far back as 1998, a strategy by the mainstream firms to distract Congress' attention away from them.
  3. The proposed fee, imposed only on the bodyshops, would have basically NO impact, as employers would still save far more in salary costs than the amount of the fee.

 
Senator Schumer amplified on his bill today in a speech to the Senate.   I urge those of you readers who are concerned about the H-1B program (many of my readers are not programmers or engineers, but instead are journalists, academics, congressional staffers and others with a professional interest in this topic) to watch the video of his speech.
 
Schumer's remarks on H-1B start at around 16 minutes or so into the video.   He spends about 10 minutes on H-1B, trying to justify his fee, in response to complaints from Indian-American and Indian owners of bodyshops.
 
Almost all of what he says deals with Point 1 above.   He claims that the main-stream firms (he cites MSFT, IBM, Intel, Cisco and so on) are using the the H-1B program responsibly, to the benefit of the American people.   He contrasts that to the bodyshops, who he points out don't produce products of their own and are merely temp employment agencies, which he regards as an egregious violation of the spirit and intent of the H-1B program.   (Unlike his remarks of the last few days, in which he said the bodyshops are "breaking the rules", he now says that they are not doing anything technically illegal.   [Yes, one can break the rules of civility without breaking the law...jgo])
 
Schumer stated repeatedly in his speech today that the bodyshops hire the H-1Bs as cheap labor, and claims that the mainstream firms do not do so.   The main-stream firms are the Good Guys, he keeps saying, while the Bad Guys are the bodyshops.
 
Well, even a 10-year-old would see the fallacy there.   (Which, sadly, doesn't mean the politicians and the press would see it, though in the case of the politicians, they don't WANT to see it.)   If the main-stream firms are the Good Guys, why are they hiring from the Bad Guys????   Just look, for instance, at a list of clients of TCS, one of the largest bodyshops.   We see Agilent, Cisco, Motorola, MSFT, Prudential and so on.
 
And now that Schumer agrees that the bodyshops are operating lawfully, how can they get away with paying below-market wages?   The answer, as I've said, is huge loop-holes in the legal definition of prevailing wage.   But again, a 10-year-old would wonder why the main-stream firms don't make use of those same loop-holes, and in fact, they do.   (I've shown this in dollars-and-cents terms for various main-stream firms, e.g. Intel.)
 
Schumer also says in his speech to the bodyshops, "...you should pay a higher fee to insuring American workers are not losing their jobs [to H-1Bs]..."   But again, as they say these days, "Do the math."   The H-1B employers are saying many tens of thousands of dollars over the 6-year span of an H-1B visa, so $2K is nothing.   Once again, a 10-year-old could see that.
 
As I mentioned, I've been seeing this demonizing of the bodyshops for more than 10 years now, and have been warning H-1B reformers that in the end Congress would come up with cosmetic "reform" that focuses on the bodyshops while allowing everyone else to go scot free -- and even the bodyshops will be able to conduct "business as usual".   (I've warned H-1B reformers about this partly because some of them are caught up in that same invalid focus on the bodyshops.)   But this is the most overt movement I've seen in this direction.
 
Since I've been expected this, Schumer's remarks in general did not cause much of a reaction in me.   As I keep saying, although obviously I have strong opinions on H-1B, it has no personal impact on me.   But two specific remarks of his really did irk me:
 
1.   In an obvious allusion to the Durbin/Grassley bill, Schumer claimed that the authors of that bill agree with him that the bodyshops are the Bad Guys and the main-stream firms are the Good Guys.   I know this claim of Schumer's is false.   At least it used to be, and I hope nothing has changed.   [IMO, nearly all of the bodyshops are Bad Guys... and so are their customers...jgo]
 
2.   As many of you readers know, I've emphasized repeatedly that the under-payment of H-1Bs is done in full compliance with the law, due to loop-holes.   Well, Schumer hijacked that loop-hole concept, saying that the loop-hole was the fact that H-1B law doesn't ban an H-1B employer from renting his workers out to other firms.
 
This is one of the most misleading speeches I've seen in quite a while.
 
Norm
Patrick Thibodeau: ComputerWorld/IDG: Schumer said H-1B use under-cuts pay and discourages enrollment in STEM classes

2010-08-12
Matthew Omolesky _American Spectator_
Irregular Crossings: clandestinis and poveri disgraziati

2010-08-12
Tes Vigeland _Naional Socialist Radio_
Impact of anchor babies
"A new study from the Pew Hispanic Center says in 2008, 340K babies were born in the U.S.A. to at least one parent who was in this country illegally.   That's nearly 1 in 12 newborns."

2010-08-12
Bob Ewing _Big Government_
Monks face jail for selling caskets

2010-08-12
Gerald Celente _Lew Rockwell_
US Depression Will Lead to Another Fake War

2010-08-12
Allan H. Meltzer _Wall Street Journal_
Europe and Obama are jumping under the Keynesian bus

2010-08-12
Tom Barlow _Wallet Pop_
More than 40M Socialist Insecurity numbers are associated with more than one person
Chrstina Cheddar Berk
ID Analytics
More than 20M individuals (6.1%) have more than one Socialist Insecurity Number associated with their names.   More than 40M SINs (over 15%) are associated with more than one person.   More than 100K Americans have 5 or more SINs associated with their name.   More than 140K SINs are associated with 5 or more people.   More than 27K Socialist Insecurity Numbers are associated with 10 or more people.

2010-08-12
Sephanie Overby _CIO_/_IDG_
The end of IT bodyshopping and off-shoring as we know it?
"We base this primarily on the evident reticence of some of the leading players like Infosys, TCS [Tata] and Wipro, who are all sitting on a pile of cash but have not made any bold investment decisions to date.   The question is how quickly they can hope to build enough scale, at a time when enterprise clients are still cautious about delivery capabilities, pricing models and data protection.   The [tier 2 Indian providers] lack the scale or size of balance sheet to compete with their larger U.S. and multi-national counterparts like IBM, Google and Amazon.   So Google, Amazon and IBM will be the big three in IT services in 2015.   Won't Google and Amazon themselves have to make some major changes to adapt to the requirements of Fortune 500 out-sourcing customers?...   You argue that this coming revolution in IT out-sourcing could mean more U.S. jobs and less off-shoring.   Costs will certainly be cut or contained as we go to significant scale advantages on the back of standardization and one-to-many configurations in the cloud.   And the flexibility brought about by software-as-a-service may actually favor domestic, low-cost locations like North Dakota or Georgia.   High-speed internet access has already helped smart companies tap into a rural, inexpensive but stable labor force working in small delivery centers or at home to staff back-office or call center activities.   Cloud computing and distributed applications may very well accelerate this trend and help retain entry- to mid-level jobs in the U.S.A."
Wipro median salaries by city
Tata median salaries by city
Infosys median salaries by city

2010-08-12
William L. Anderson
Forgive Us Our Debts...
2009-03-05: Robert Higgs: Independent Institute
 
 

  "The most worrisome number in the calculations was 675K, the anticipated 'short-fall' in bachelor's degrees in science and enginering.   'I was the one who started it all.', Myles Boylan said 15 years later, referring to a PRA 'issue paper' in which his sole aim, he explained, was simply to review the pipe-line data.   the main finding, he recalled, was that the labor force in science and technology was 'stable' -- and at the time, consisted overwhelmingly of white males.   'The only thing arguable', Boylan maintained, 'was how movable was the percentage.   I argued it was movable.', he said, referring to the potential for raising the low percentage of women and minority-group members awarded bachelor's degrees in science and engineering, 'but you had to move it.'...   'When you create a number, that number takes on a life of its own.'" --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg118  

 
 

2010-08-13

2010-08-13
Linda Kilcrease _Bergen NJ Daily Record_
Too many workers leave NJ: executives want cheap, pliant labor
"Boudreau points out how companies question support of jobs in high-cost New Jersey.   It should be no surprise.   Primarily, companies are looking for cheaper labor.   They are moving jobs to foreigners en masse, both by off-shoring jobs and by importing foreigners under the H-1B, L-1, and similar visas.   Just as water seeks its own level, jobs tend to go where labor is cheapest, and American workers will leave as there are no new jobs to replace the ones lost.   I lost my job twice after training foreigners.   Consider, also, that people without income cannot afford retraining.   Strengthening the relationship between state, colleges, and companies to provide training to workers of all ages with paid internships may be a key."

2010-08-13

Small bodyshops may attempt to gain from increased anti-fraud fee on H-1B visas by trying to arrange off-shoring deals
Beth Bachelder: CIO
Stephanie Overby: ComputerWorld/IDG

2010-08-13
_Family Security Matters_
This may be more of a political gesture than anything meant to secure borders and ports

2010-08-13
Greg Robb _MarketWatch_
KC fed chief Hoenig calls Fed's inflationary policy a "dangerous gamble"

2010-08-13 11:52PDT (14:52EDT) (18:52GMT)
Steve Goldstein _MarketWatch_
UMich consumer sentiment index up from 67.8 in July to 69.6 in August

2010-08-13
_New American_
Driver licenses for illegal aliens prove deadly

2010-08-13
Andrew Nusca _SmartPlanet_/_Ziff Davis_/_CBS_
anti-biotic resistant NDM-1 arrived in USA from India
K.K. Kumarasamy, M.A. Toleman, T.R. Walsh et al. Lancet
"The gene mutation, called NDM-1 ('New Delhi metallo-beta-lactamase'), is of concern because it could very well spread across the world, rendering our anti-biotic ammunition useless against the bacteria that have it.   It's hardly the first anti-biotic-resistant strain to appear -- MRSA, or methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, is a common one that's known for being difficult to treat -- but it's got physicians and scientists concerned nonetheless...   The problem with bacteria that carry the NDM-1 gene is that they're resistant to our current crop of 'last resort' antibiotics, called carbapenems.   Furthermore, the genetic mutation has been found in E. coli and in Klebsiella pneumoniae, responsible for respiratory and urinary infections, respectively.   A study funded by pharma giant Wyeth (now of Pfizer) and the European Union tracked the spread of the mutation from India and Pakistan to Britain...   The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recorded the first three cases of NDM-1 resistance in June."

2010-08-13
Daniel Costa _Economic Policy Institute_
Abuses in the L-Visa Program: Undermining the U.S. Labor Market

2010-08-13 (5770 Elul 03)
Carolinen B. Glick _Jewish World Review_
Guide to the Perplexed

2010-08-13 (5770 Elul 03)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
Bean-counters and race baloney
"At our leading engineering schools -- MIT, CalTech, etc. -- whites are under-represented and Asians over-represented. Is this anti-white racism or pro-Asian racism? Or are different groups just different?"

2010-08-13
DJIA10,323.00
S&P 5001,079.25
NASDAQ2,173.48
Nikkei9,253
10-year US T-Bond2.68
crude oil$75.39/barrel
gold$1,216.60/ounce
silver$18.109/ounce
platinum$1,526.20/ounce
palladium$471.05/ounce
copper$0.20453125/ounce
natgas$4.35/MBTU
reformulatedgasoline $1.9396/gal
heatingoil$2.9956/gal
soybeans$10.44/bushel
maize$4.2725/bushel
wheat$7.3425/bushel
dollarindex82.94
yenperdollar86.24
dollarspereuro1.2751
dollarsperpound1.5583
swissfranksperdollar 1.0516
indianrupeesperdollar 46.765
mexicanpesosperdollar 12.7240
MorganStanleyHighTechIndex520.64

I usually get this info from MarketWatch.
 
 
 

  "'the combination of increased federal support of graduate education and market forces' had in the past increased PhD production, while reductions in federal support and market demand had negative effects." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg119 (citing House sub-committee on Investigations and Oversight 1992-04-08 _Projecting Science and Engineering Personnel Requirements for the 1990s_ pg1058)  

 
 

2010-08-14

2010-08-14 Sunny Sen _BusinessWeek_
H-1B visa fee: Much Ado About Nothing
"Using current estimates, Indian companies would have to shell out an estimated $250M on the hike in visa charges.   H1B visas are given for a period of 3 years [with an additional 3 year renewal and indefinite 1-year extensions].   The $2K fee hike works out to about $700 per employee per year.   Conventionally, most IT companies charge $60-$70 per hour; at that rate, the costs cover approximately a day-and-a-half's worth of revenues.   Looked at another way, all companies put together would have to raise prices to cover an additional $1M a day in the first year, or approximately $350K each year for the period of the visa."
 
 

  "Following the distribution of a series of drafts, the work-force data and policy proposals were incorporated into a 405-page book, published in 1989 by [Peter House's] PRA division under the NSF imprint _The State of Academic Science and Engineering_ (NSF 90-35, 1989) In a forward, Erich Bloch, the demanding director of NSF, strongly endorsed the publication, expressing 'thanks to an excellent staff for an excellent piece of work'..." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg119  

 
 

2010-08-15

2010-08-15
Jan Falstad _Billings MT Gazette_/_Lee_
Firms move quickly in Bakken oil field boom

"Along with an estimated 200 oil companies from around the world, CMG and Tractor and Equipment Inc. of Billings and Fiberglass Structures Inc. of Laurel are just three of dozens of Montana and Wyoming companies pumping up their profits from oil and natural gas in the Williston Basin.   Some of the major refiners also are involved.   ConocoPhillips, which has been active in the basin for decades, recently brought 15 employees to Billings and opened another Williston Basin operations office.   ExxonMobil just purchased XTO Energy, a player in Montana and North Dakota."
the race is on

2010-08-15 06:30PDT (09:30EDT) (13:30GMT)
Leslie Kwoh _NJ Star-Ledger_
Irate law school grads say they were misled about job prospects
"they were dismayed at the meager opportunities and heavy debt they faced... The angry rants first surfaced last summer... Law school is a 'scam', the blogger wrote. Administrators are greedy 'charlatans' who could not care less about education, and students are but 'hapless lemmings' who have been tricked into paying a fortune to enter 'America's most over-rated, miserable and saturated industry'.   Within months, the blog was drawing up to 5K unique readers a day, many of whom praised the anonymous writer -- known only as Law is 4 Losers -- as a hero for exposing the lies they say they, too, were fed about secure jobs and generous incomes. The blogger is SB, a 2005 Seton Hall University School of Law graduate who agreed to reveal his identity to the Star-Ledger for this article. Yet SB, whose outrage stems from graduating with more than $100K of debt but meager job prospects, says he is merely tapping into a ground-swell of resentment against the nation's law schools... School administrators, who admit to keeping tabs on these so-called 'scam blogs', which now number in the dozens, bristle at the charge that they run diploma mills. Not every graduate can land a 6-figure job at a big-name [or even a high 5-figure job at a small-name] law firm -- especially during the current down-turn -- but many still find fulfilling careers in and out of the legal field, said Claudette St. Romain, an associate dean at Seton Hall, one of three law schools in New Jersey... What law school officials don't deny is that these are challenging times for new graduates. Job openings are scarce. Firms are increasingly turning to out-sourcing or contract work [or off-shore out-sourcing]. And still, the number of law school enrollees has continued to climb as those unable to find [other] work clamor for professional degrees. The result: Unemployment among new law school grads nationwide has risen for two straight years, to a rate of 12 percent for the class of 2009, according to the National Association for Law Placement. Among the employed, 1 in 4 jobs were temporary, while 1 in 10 were part-time. One-fifth of those employed said they were searching for another job, twice as many as in the boom years a decade ago. Recognizing the mounting crisis, the American Bar Association recently urged prospective students to carefully weigh the costs and benefits of a legal education. For a law degree to pay off, the association said in a memo, a grad should earn at least $65K a year. Nearly half of employed 2008 grads had starting salaries below that amount. 'Law students ought to look at the numbers and envision how their future might be before going to law school, not after.', said ABA president Carolyn Lamm. But the critics ask: How can prospective students make informed decisions when they aren't given enough information in the first place?   In the glossy Seton Hall brochures he perused before applying, SB recalls reading about 6-figure salaries and job placement rates of more than 90%. Nothing he read, he said, prepared him for the harsh reality after graduation, of having to take a low-level temp job at a large Newark firm and toiling in sweat-shop conditions elbow-to-elbow with dozens of other grads... On its web-site, the school currently reports an employment rate of 94% for the 2009 class, but does not break that down into full-time, part-time or temporary work. The school also claims a starting salary of $145K in private practice, though it does not specify how many grads reported salaries in this area... Brian Tamanaha, a professor at Washington University Law School in St. Louis. 'This is not one school or two schools, this is a lot of schools doing this.'... Average law school tuitions have risen twice as fast as inflation over the last two decades, to $35,740 for private schools in 2008, up from just $9,650 in 1998, according to the ABA. Living and book expenses ballooned to $13,680 during the same period... The [ABA] says it is also looking into changing the way it accredits new schools, in response to criticism that a proliferation of institutions is adding to the over-supply of lawyers and diluting the quality of the legal education system. Since the start of the decade, 18 new schools have received accreditation, adding to the existing 182 and helping swell the ranks of enrollment by 20K students."
 
 

  "In a memo dated 1990-02-02, [Peter House] requested clearance for publication of his tome of data, analysis, and short-fall warnings _The State of Academic and Science Engineering_ as an official NSF document, as he had for various drafts of 'short-fall' reports and the 'scarcity' paper.   In this instance, as in all cases, clearance was refused by the chief of NSF's relations with the political realm, Ray Bye, head of NSF's Office of Legislative and Public Affairs.   Undeerred, House published anyway, identifying the source for each publication as 'The National science Foundation, Directorate for Science, Technological, and International Affairs, Division of Policy Research and Analysis'." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg121  

 
 

2010-08-16

2010-08-15 21:02PDT (2010-08-16 00:02EDT) (2010-08-16 04:02GMT)
Ken Myland _ClearView Economics_/_MarketWatch_
To create jobs, cut pay 10% across the board: Risk of falling into more Keynesian fallacies
 
 

  "_The State of Academic Science and Engineering_, produced by [Peter House] and colleagues, plainly explained that 'The short-fall is not necessarily a shortage unless the demand... exceeds the declining supply.' Listeners might be puzzled, on the basis of colloquial usage and dictionary definitions that usually couple 'short-fall' with 'shortage' (as in _Webster's New World Dictionary_, Second College edition: 'The act or an instance of falling short, or the amount of the shortage').   Not surprisingly, 'shortage', sometimes coupled with 'crisis', was the chosen word elsewhere as alarm over what appeared to be a looming and dangerous scientific manpower deficiency was reiterated in many forums.   The dour statistics emanating from NSF were embraced by a former director of the NSF, Richard C. Atkinson." --- _The State of Academic Science and Engineering_ (quoted in Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pp121-122)  

 
 

2010-08-17

2010-08-17
Kenneth Cobin _IT Management EarthWeb_
H-1B Visa Anti-Fraud Fees Rose with "Border Security" Bill
Toni Bowers: Tech Republic
"Schumer and other supporters of the bill noted that the rate hikes won't affect most companies in the tech sector -- small startups with fewer than 50 workers would be exempted, as would large tech firms that routinely advocate for expanding the annual H-1B quota."

2010-08-17
Greg Toppo _USA Today_/_Gannett_
Objectives of charter schools with ties to Turkish radicals have been questioned
Tim Steller: Arizona Daily Star

2010-08-17
Michale d'Aquino & Michael Wald _US DoL_
Smartsoft to pay $1M in back-wages, interest and penalties for H-1B violations
KLIV
WorkForce Management
"Smartsoft International Inc., a [cross-border bodyshop] based in Suwanee, GA [NE of Atlanta], has agreed to pay nearly $1M in back wages and interest to 135 non-immigrant workers temporarily employed by the company under the H-1B visa program.   The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of the Solicitor reached this agreement following a determination by the department's Wage and Hour Division that the company violated the H-1B program's rules.   Smartsoft International also has U.S. offices in Sunnyvale, CA, and North Brunswick, NJ...   A Wage and Hour Division investigator determined that some employees were not paid any wages at the beginning of their employment, were paid on a part-time basis despite being hired under a full-time employment agreement, and were paid less than the prevailing wage applicable to the geographic locations where they performed their work."

2010-08-17 10:02:42PDT (13:02:42EDT) (17:02:42GMT)
Jacob Adelman _San Jose Mercury "News"_/_AP_
Southern California home sales down 21% in July from last year

2010-08-17 (5770 Elul 07)
Frank J. Gaffney _Jewish World Review_
the lesson of the Ground Zero mosque is about bringing the shariah law of Saudi Arabia and Iran to the USA

2010-08-17 (5770 Elul 07)
Caroline B. Glick _Jewish World Review_
standing on a land-mine
"But what ideology motivates Obama to embrace such an unpopular initiative at such an explosive political juncture?   Obama and his supporters would like us to believe this is a civil rights issue.   In his defense of the Ground Zero mosque, Obama claimed his position was based on the American values such as, 'The laws that we apply without regard to race, or religion, or wealth, or status.   Our capacity to show not merely tolerance, but respect towards those who are different from us.'   But if Obama is motivated by a belief in civil rights that is so strong it propels him to take on deeply unpopular causes in an election season, then one could reasonably expect that his support for civil rights would be absolute.   That is, one could expect him to use the same yardstick for all groups, in all places and at all times.   But for Obama, there are some groups who must be denied the same civil rights he upholds as absolute in his defense of the plan to build a mosque at Ground Zero.   As Obama has made clear since his first days in office, he believes that Jews should be denied the right to their property in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria simply because they are Jews.   Obama is so firm in his belief that Jews should be denied civil rights in Israel's capital and in the heartland of Jewish history that he has provoked multiple crises in his relations with Israel to advance this bigoted view.   Almost from his first day in office Obama has struck out a radical position in which he has insisted that Jews must be prohibited from building anything -- synagogues, homes, nurseries, schools -- in Judea, Jerusalem and Samaria on land they own.   Jews -- Israeli and non-Israeli -- should be barred from exercising their property rights even if their construction plans have already been approved 'in accordance with local laws and ordinances'.   At the same time, Obama has insisted that Israel take no action to enforce its 'local laws and ordinances' against illegal structures built by Arabs in Jerusalem, Judea, or Samaria...   Rather it has to do with his commitment to advancing the interests of a specific group or groups over the interests of other specific groups."

2010-08-17 (5770 Elul 07)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
Dismantling America part 1
Patriot Post
"At the time when it was written, however, the Constitution was a radical departure from the autocratic governments of the 18th century.   Since it was something so new and different, the reasons for the Constitution's provisions were spelled out in 'The Federalist', a [series of pamphlets] written by 3 of the writers of the Constitution, [and the anti-Federalist pamphlets written by those concerned about its short-comings], as a sort of instruction guide to a new product...   The Constitution was not only a challenge to the despotic governments of its time, it has been a continuing challenge -- to this day -- to all those who think that ordinary people should be ruled by their betters, whether an elite of blood, or of books or of whatever else gives people a puffed-up sense of importance...   the principle of the divine rights of kings to impose whatever they wish on the masses lives on today in the rampaging presumptions of those who consider themselves anointed to impose their notions on others.   The Constitution of the United States is the biggest single obstacle to the carrying out of such rampaging presumptions, so it is not surprising that those with such presumptions have led the way in denigrating, undermining and evading the Constitution...   It was the Progressives of a hundred years ago who began saying that the Constitution needed to be subordinated to whatever they chose to call 'the needs of the times'.   Nor were they content to say that the Constitution needed more Amendments, for that would have meant that the much disdained masses would have something to say about whether, or what kind, of Amendments were needed.   The agenda then, as now, has been for our betters to decide among themselves which Constitutional safeguards against arbitrary government power should be disregarded, in the name of meeting 'the needs of the times' -- as they choose to define those needs.   The first open attack on the Constitution by a President of the United States was made by our only president with a Ph.D., Woodrow Wilson.   Virtually all the arguments as to why judges should not take the Constitution as meaning what its words plainly say, but 'interpret' it to mean whatever it ought to mean, in order to meet 'the needs of the times', were made by Woodrow Wilson.   It is no coincidence that those who imagine themselves so much wiser and nobler than the rest of us should be in the forefront of those who seek to erode Constitutional restrictions on the arbitrary powers of government.   How can our betters impose their superior wisdom and virtue on us, when the Constitution gets in the way at every turn, with all its provisions to safeguard a system based on a self-governing people?...   Now there is leaked news of plans to change the immigration laws by administrative fiat, rather than Congressional legislation, presumably because Congress might be unduly influenced by those pesky voters -- with their Constitutional rights -- who have shown clearly that they do not want amnesty and open borders, despite however much our betters do.   If the Obama administration gets away with this, and can add a few million illegals to the voting rolls in time for the 2012 elections, that can mean re-election, and with it a continuing and accelerating dismantling of America."
Jacksonville FL Times-Union
video interview
 
 

  "Doing its own reckoning, the Los Angeles Times trimmed the [alleged] deficit but extended the time horizon, reporting, 'In all, NSF predits a short-fall of 560K scientists and engineers by 2010.'   From 675K in 2006 to 560K in 2010?   The varying numbers may indeed have been rooted in demographic projections.   However, throughout the short-fall episode, as in other public controversies, seemingly authoritative numbers were introduced and accepted into public dialogue without critical examination of their validity or explanation for deviations from previously cited numbers -- substantiating the line cited in [Peter House's] book: 'Some numbers beat no numbers every time.'" --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg123  

 
 

2010-08-18

2010-08-18
Douglas McIntyre _AOL_/_Daily Finance_
The Lay-Off Kings: 25 firms dumped 700K workers in 2009

2010-08-18
Neal Boortz _Small Government Times_
Washington elite's hatred for the US constitution

2010-08-18
Gerald Celente _Lew Rockwell_
Reovery or Relapse?

2010-08-18
Cal Thomas _Saratogian_
The Ground Zero Sum Game

2010-08-18 (5770 Elul 08)
Walter E. Williams _Jewish World Review_
Will Republians save us?
"Democrat control of the White House, House of Representatives and the Senate has produced an unprecedented level of political brazenness and contempt for the limitations placed on the federal government by the U.S. Constitution.   As such, it has raised a level of constitutional interest and anger against Washington's interference in our lives that has been dormant for far too long...   According to the most recent Gallup poll, only 20% of Americans approve of the job Congress is doing, but that's up from a 2010 March low of 16%...   Maybe a good starting point for an answer might be to examine how Republicans have handled their majority in the past.   Democrat President Lyndon Johnson's term of office saw massive increases in federal spending.   When Johnson was elected into office in 1964, federal spending was $118G.   When he left office in 1968, federal spending was $178G, a 66% increase.   Worse than the massive increase in federal spending, his administration and Democratically controlled Congress saddled us with two programs that have helped fuel today's fiscal disaster -- Medicare and Medicaid.   The 1994 elections gave Republican control of both the House and Senate.   They held a majority for a decade.   The 2000 election of George W. Bush as president gave Republicans what the Democrats have now, total control of the legislative and executive branches of government.   When Bush came to office, federal spending was $1.788T.   When he left office, federal spending was $2.982T.   That's a 60% increase in federal spending, closely matching the profligacy of Lyndon Johnson's presidency.   During the Republican control, the nation was saddled with massive federal interference in education through No Child Left Behind.   Prescription drug hand-outs became a part of the Republican-controlled Congress' legacy.   And it was during this interval that Congress accelerated its interference, assisted by the Federal Reserve Bank, in the housing market in the name of home-ownership that produced much of the financial melt-down that the nation suffered in 2008.   During the last 2 years, Democrats have amassed unprecedented growth of federal government power in the forms of bailouts, corporate take-overs, favors to their political allies and nationalization of our health care system.   My question is how likely is it for Republicans to behave differently if they gain control? Their past behavior doesn't make one confident that they will behave much differently, but I could be wrong.   If Republicans win the House of Representatives, there are measures they should take in their first month of office, and that is to undo most of what the Democratically controlled Congress has done.   If they don't win a veto-proof Senate, they can't undo Obamacare but the House alone can refuse to fund any part of it.   There are numerous blocking tactics that a Republican-controlled House can take against those hell-bent on trampling on our Constitution.   The question is whether they will have guts and principle to do it.   After all, many Americans, including those who are Republicans, have a stake in big government control, special privileges and hand-outs.   Ultimately, we Americans must act to ensure that our liberty does not depend on personalities in Washington.   Our founders tried to do that with our Constitution.   Thomas Jefferson offered us a solution when he said, 'The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions, that I wish it to be always kept alive.   It will often be exercised when wrong, but better so than not to be exercised at all.   I like a little rebellion now and then.'"

2010-08-18 (5770 Elul 08)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
Dismantling America part 2
National Review
Real Clear Politics
"'we the people' are treated as an obstacle to circumvent by the current administration in Washington.   One way of circumventing the people is to rush legislation through Congress so fast that no one knows what is buried in it.   Did you know that the so-called health care reform bill contained a provision creating a tax on people who buy and sell gold coins?...   the whole point of burying it in legislation about medical insurance is to make sure 'we the people' don't even know about it, much less have a chance to debate it, before it becomes law...   Not since the Norman conquerors of England published their laws in French, for an English-speaking nation, centuries ago, has there been such contempt for the people's right to know what laws were being imposed on them...   Much has been made of the fact that families making less than $250K a year will not see their taxes raised.   Of course they won't see it, because what they see could affect how they vote.   But when huge tax increases are put on electric utility companies, the public will see their electricity bills go up.   When huge taxes are put on other businesses as well, they will see the prices of the things those businesses sell go up...   There was a time when most Americans would have resented the suggestion that they wanted someone else to pay their bills.   But now, envy and resentment have been cultivated to the point where even people who contribute nothing to society feel that they have a right to a 'fair share' of what others have produced.   The most dangerous corruption is a corruption of a nation's soul. That is what this administration is doing."
Dismantling America part 1
Dismantling America part 2
Dismantling America part 3
Dismantling America part 4
video interview
 
 

  "Asserting that 'we need to acknowledge the amazing fecundity of American higher education', White descibed the growth from 1977 to 1987 in the ranks of PhD scientists and engineers in academic R&D as 'nothing short of phenomenal, increasing 65% in the decade, from 94K to 155K'.   During those years, he continued, money for academic R&D had risen from $8G to $14G, a 75% increase in dollars adjusted for inflation...   As Peter House at NSF continued to spread the 'short-fall' alarm, White and others argued that expanding the work-force was not the solution.   'The fact is', White declared, 'that there are just too many science and engineering investigators chasing too few dollars.'" --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pp126-127 (citing Robert M. White 1990-10-02 "Science, Engineering and the Sorcerer's Apprentice" address to the National Academy of Engineering)  

 
 

2010-08-19

2010-08-19 05:30PDT (08:30EDT) (12:30GMT)
Scott Gibbons & Tony Sznoluch _DoL ETA_
un-employment insurance weekly claims report
DoL home page
DoL OPA press releases
historical data
"The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 401,856 in the week ending Aug. 14, a decrease of 22,650 from the previous week.   There were 457,985 initial claims in the comparable week in 2009.   The advance unadjusted insured unemployment rate was 3.4% during the week ending Aug. 7, unchanged from the prior week.   The advance unadjusted number for persons claiming UI benefits in state programs totaled 4,254,571, a decrease of 78,949 from the preceding week.   A year earlier, the rate was 4.4% and the volume was 5,808,572.   Extended benefits were available in AL, AK, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, DC, FL, GA ID, IL, IN KS, KY, ME, MA, MI, MN, MO, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, OH, OR, PA, PR, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, WA, WV, and WI during the week ending July 31...   States reported 4,753,456 persons claiming EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) benefits for the week ending July 31, an increase of 260,105 from the prior week.   There were 2,961,457 claimants in the comparable week in 2009.   EUC weekly claims include first, second, third, and fourth tier activity.   [Note that the population used for calculating the "insured unemployment rate" changes
to 132,623,886 beginning 2007-10-06;
to 133,010,953 beginning 2008-01-05;
to 133,382,559 beginning 2008-04-05;
to 133,690,617 beginning 2008-07-05;
to 133,902,387 beginning 2008-10-04;
to 133,886,830 beginning 2009-01-03;
to 133,683,433 beginning 2009-04-04;
to 133,078,480 beginning 2009-07-04;
to 133,823,421 beginning 2009-10-03;
to 131,823,421 beginning 2009-10-17;
to 130,128,328 beginning 2010-01-02;
to 128,298,468 beginning 2010-04-03;
to 126,763,245 beginning 2010-07-03.]
graphs
more graphs

2010-08-19
Therese Poletti _MarketWatch_
HP culture made worse under Fiorina and Hurd
"much like his predecessor Carly Fiorina, who pretty much killed the old H-P Way...   under Hurd, H-P's once collegial work-place has changed again for the worse...   H-P, which was once a great innovator in Silicon Valley, has also become less focused on creating anything new.   Its founders Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard invented the audio oscillator in their famous Palo Alto, CA garage, which was used by Walt Disney Studios to develop an innovative sound system for the 1940 movie 'Fantasia'.   Some of its better-known inventions that affected consumers more directly include ink-jet printing technology, the first desk-top 'scientific' calculator and first hand-held 'scientific' calculator, which eliminated the need for the slide rule.   It is also known for pioneering many innovative management concepts still used today in corporate life, such as profit-sharing for employees, management by walking around and flex-time for workers.   Employees used to be proud to work at H-P.   Now, one measure of how H-P has de-emphasized innovation is in its spending on research and development, which dropped over both Hurd's and Fiorina's tenures.   It sunk to even lower levels under Hurd as a percentage of its growing revenue.   In its fiscal 2009 annual report, its last under Hurd, H-P said 'We remain committed to innovation as a key element of H-P's culture.'   The numbers tell a different story.   For fiscal 1999, the year Fiorina took over as CEO, research and development was 5.8% of H-P's total revenue.   For fiscal 2005, Hurd's first 6 months at the tech giant, R&D was 4% of revenue.   In fiscal 2009, which ended Oct. 31, the company's R&D budget was only 2.5% of total revenue."

2010-08-19
David N. Bass _American Spectator_
The Blue Dog Days of Summer
"If nothing else, Barack Obama's presidency has done one thing: expose so-called centrist Democrats for the ideological hacks they are...   supposedly moderate Democrats have demonstrated their true colors, as shown by new rankings for 2009 from the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste [CAGW].   The group tracked 120 votes in the House ranging from stimulus funds to bail-outs to environmental projects.   The score-card ranks Democrats in the Blue Dog Coalition -- who claim to be 'independent voices for fiscal responsibility and accountability' -- as just a smudge better than liberal members of Congress.   Almost half of House Democrats -- 105 out of 253 total -- scored 0%.   Blue Dog Democrats, meanwhile, averaged just 11%.   The coalition's leadership came in well below that: representatives Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (6%), Baron Hill (3%), Jim Matheson (11%), and Heath Shuler (8%).   To his credit, representative Walt Minnick of Idaho scored the highest of any Blue Dog at 83%. He fared better than many Republicans."

2010-08-19
Jennifer Wheeler _Daily Illini_
U of IL might increase out-of-state tuition... but probably not for illegal aliens

2010-08-19 10:08:35PDT (13:08:35EDT) (17:08:35GMT)
Frank Michael Russell _San Jose CA Mercury "News"_
Chegg text-book-rental bought CourseRank

2010-09-19
Rob Rogers _Billings MT Gazette_/_Lee_
Billings MT ACT scores higher than MT and national averages
Columbia MO Tribune
Columbus OH Dispatch
Knoxville TN News
Gainesville GA Times
Deseret UT News
Wisconsin Socialist Radio/Fox 21
Daytona Beach FL News-Journal
Arizona Republic
TX Monitor
Bloomington IL Pantagraph
Washington DC Examiner
Fox 21 Idaho
Miami FL Herald
Effingham IL Daily News
NJ Today
IA Politics
Kansas City Star
Chicago Daily Herald

2010-08-19
Bob Cozzi _System i Network_
Mr. Cozzi goes to Washington DC: Where have all the good programmers gone?

2010-08-19
Hollis Colquhoun _Technorati_
Someone may be stealing your child's identity

2010-08-19 (5770 Elul 09)
Matt Flegenheimer _Jewish World Review_
Hyper-competitive over-achievers bet on ther own academic success... and are then under-mined in the job market

2010-08-19 (5770 Elul 09)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
Dismantling America part 3
Patriot Post
"runaway government spending, under the banners of 'stimulus' and 'jobs' is not stimulating anything except political pay-offs to special interests.   As for jobs, the percentage of the population with jobs keeps on declining, even as the administration points to all the jobs it is creating.   It is of course not pointing to all the other jobs that it is destroying, whether by taking money out of the private sector or by loading so many mandates on employers that labor is made artificially too expensive for many employers to do much hiring.   But the most dangerous and most lasting damage that this administration has done to this nation has been in the international jungle, where it is alienating our long-time allies, dismantling our credibility by reneging on our commitments to putting up a missile shield in Eastern Europe and -- above all -- doing nothing meaningful to stop the leading terror-sponsoring nation in the world, Iran, from getting nuclear weapons...   suicidal fanatics in charge of the government of Iran...have already shown how little they care about the people of Iran and how much they care about their fanatical beliefs and hate-filled agendas.   How much does our own administration in Washington care about the American people and their national security?...   It is not only in our foreign relations that the administration's commitment to the national security of the United States is open to serious question.   Domestically, as well, the same serious and painful questions arise.   After spending hundreds of billions of dollars on political pork barrel projects from coast to coast -- some frivolous beyond belief -- its only major cut in federal spending has been its move to cut $100G from the Defense Department's budget.   If there was ever a time when we needed a larger standing army, as distinguished from relying on National Guard troops, taken suddenly from civilian life and sent on multiple tours of combat duty, this is that time.   We need a bigger and constantly modernizing military, not a bargain basement military, trimmed down to leave more money for pork barrel spending.   Sometimes small things can give you a better clue than large things.   A recent editorial in Investor's Business Daily pointed out that hundreds of captured illegal aliens from terrorist-sponsoring nations were released on their own recognizance within the United States.   Are these the actions of an administration that is serious about the national security of the American people?"
Dismantling America part 1
Dismantling America part 2
Dismantling America part 3
Dismantling America part 4
video interview
 
 

  "For years, the leaders of science and their political supporters had urged scientists to team up and take the case for science directly to the public.   In 1990, a post-doctoral fellow in physics at the Naval Research Laboratory, Kevin Aylesworth, adapted that advice to the job situation, setting up an e-mail alliance, the Young Scientists' Network, to swap information, and dismay, about job prospects.   'I have conducted an informal poll of 25 post-docs and recent recipients of Phds in physics.', Aylesworth wrote in _Physics Today_, the monthly magazine of the American Institute of Physics.   'I have found that all of them have been seriously hunting for permanent positions for the last 3 to 6 months with absolutely no success.' Aylesworth doggedly telephoned, wrote to, e-mailed, and visited reporters and congressional staff members in Washington [DC], supplying them with details of the bleak job market and urging skepticism toward the short-fall-shortage alarms.   Engineers, particularly afflicted by the poor job situation, lashed the 'short-fall' forecasts in their professional publications.   'Annual Surplus of 10K-15K EEs Predicted' head-lined an article in the 1990-07-30 _Electronic Engineering Times_.   The engineers also took their grievances to congress.   The result was a rare event, a probing, skeptical congressional hearing into the short-fall issue and the internal workings of the NSF and its allies in academe and in the bastions of science in Washington [DC]." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg128  

 
 

2010-08-20

2010-08-19 17:18PDT (2010-08-19 20:18EDT) (2010-08-20 00:18GMT)
Camie Young _Gwinnett GA Daily Post_
Suwanee-based computer cross-border bodyshop Smartsoft fined for violating visa laws
Forsyth GA news
UPI
Atlanta Business Chronicle
"According to a press release from the U.S. Department of Labor, Smartsoft International Inc. agreed to pay nearly $1M in back wages and interest to 135 non-immigrant workers temporarily hired under the H-1B visa program...   According to its web-site, the company provides service and systems integration to corporations including Siemens Energy & Automation, Nissan Motors and Motorola.   The company, whose head-quarters are off Johns Creek Parkway, just north of McGinnis Ferry Road, will continue to participate in the H-1B visa program."

2010-08-20 09:52:52PDT (12:52:52EDT) (16:52:52GMT)
Pete Carey _San Jose CA Mercury "News"_
Sili Valley unemployment edged higher in July

2010-08-20
Tom Bartlett _Chronicle of Higher Education_
Dinesh D'Souza picked as president of evangelical King's College in NY

2010-08-20
David Solway _Front Page Magazine_
Israel and the West
Free Republic

2010-08-20 (5770 Elul 10)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
Dismantling America part 4
Patriot Post
"Something of this magnitude does not happen all at once or in just one administration in Washington.   What we are seeing is the culmination of many trends in many aspects of American life that go back for years.   Neither the Constitution of the United States nor the institutions set up by that Constitution are enough to ensure the continuance of a free, self-governing nation.   When Benjamin Franklin was asked what members of the Constitution Convention were creating, he replied, 'A republic, madam, if you can keep it.'   IOW, a Constitutional government does not depend [ONLY] on the Constitution but on us.   To the extent that we allow clever people to circumvent the Constitution, while dazzling us with rhetoric, the Constitution will become just a meaningless piece of paper, as our freedoms are stolen from us, much as a pick-pocket would steal our wallet while we are distracted by other things.   It is not just evil people who would dismantle America.   Many people who have no desire to destroy our freedoms simply have their own agendas that are singly or collectively incompatible with the survival of freedom.   Someone once said that a democratic society cannot survive for long after 51% of the people decide that they want to live off the other 49%.   Yet that is the direction in which we are being pushed by those who are promoting envy under its more high-toned alias of 'social justice'.   Those who construct moral melodramas -- starring themselves on the side of the angels against the forces of evil -- are ready to disregard the Constitution rights of those they demonize, and to overstep the limits put on the powers of the federal government set by the Constitution...   Our 'educators', who cannot educate our children to the level of math or science achieved in most other comparable countries, have time to poison their minds against America."
Dismantling America part 1
Dismantling America part 2
Dismantling America part 3
video interview

2010-08-20
DJIA10,213.62
S&P 5001,071.69
NASDAQ2,179.76
Nikkei9,179
10-year US T-Bond2.62
crude oil$73.46/barrel
gold$1,228.80/ounce
silver$18.00/ounce
platinum$1,513.90/ounce
palladium$476.20/ounce
copper$0.205625/ounce
natgas$4.12/MBTU
reformulatedgasoline $1.9251/gal
heatingoil$1.971/gal
soybeans$10.04/bushel
maize$4.3625/bushel
wheat$7.12/bushel
dollarindex83.04
yenperdollar108.89
dollarspereuro1.2705
dollarsperpound1.5541
swissfranksperdollar 1.0354
indianrupeesperdollar 46.68
mexicanpesosperdollar 12.775
MorganStanleyHighTechIndex541.42

I usually get this info from MarketWatch.
 

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "The squelching of short-fall alarms accelerated with a 1991-01-02 e-mail sent to NSF executives by Jim Hays, senior science adviser in Acting Director Bernthal's office.   Titled, with a touch of post-Bloch irreverence, 'Shortfall or Not', Hays's message said, 'Although it is not clear that there is, or ever has been, an NSF position on the many separate issues making up this subject, it has become desirable to develop a brief statement on the subject that we can all stand behind -- whether or not it qualifies, amplifies, or contradicts prior statements that may be attributable to NSF sources.'" --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg130  

 
 

2010-08-21

2010-08-21
_Gawker_
At Google, you're old and gray at 40

2010-08-21
Gerald Celente _Seer Press_
USA is headed for "Greatest Depression"

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "[Howard Wolpe] continued the pursuit, introducing an analysis of the 'scarcity' report conducted at NSF's request by Robert R. Trumble, dean of the [B-school] at Virginia Commonwealth University.   Solicitation of assessments by outside specialists was a standard management tool at NSF.   Trumble criticized House's demographic approach, noting in a letter report to NSF dated 1989-07-26 -- while Bloch was still director -- that 'the emphasis on 22-year-oleds is over-played because it ignores the large stock and the high number of persons already trained in the natural sciences and engineering.   A substantial number of these people are not working in science and engineering and could be attracted into that portion of the labor force with higher salaries, etc.'" --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg142  

 
 

2010-08-22

2010-08-22
Peter H. Milliken _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
OakHill 7 prosecutions will be long and complicated

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "Warnings of scarcity, present or future, were no longer credible after a dozen or so uninterrupted years of reports in professional and general publications of unemployment and under-employment among doctorates in science and engineering.   In 1995, a study derived from a survey of 344 faculty members at 19 institutions, including 9 that award PhDs in science and engineering, concluded that doctoral production is detached from and oblivious of the job market.   Reporting that 'perhaps 25% of newly-minted doctorates end up unemplyed', the study concluded that 'the natural production rate of doctorates is driven by departmental needs [in universities] for research and teaching assistants, and that departmental doctoral-student in-take is limited by financial constraints rather than output market considerations...   Faculty tend to belive that more scientifically-trained man-power is better than less, and that job opportunities will materialize somehow...   In any case, the department's short-run requirements for inexpensive research and teaching labor, and the desire of faculty to replicate their own skills, is of stronger relevance to admissions decisions than the more abstract and distant concept of labor market balance.'" --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pp144-145 (quoting William F. Massy & Charles A. Goldman 1995 _The Production and Utilization of Science and Engineering Doctorates in the United States_, Stanford)  

 
 

2010-08-23

2010-08-23
Paul Basken _Chronicle of Higher Education_
Medical Colleges Shrink Tenure as Their Teaching Hospitals Grow

2010-08-23
Ken Hedler _Prescott AZ Daily Courier_
Out-sourcing is a financial reality for Prescott Valley AZ
"The town uses outside contractors to supply water, treat sewage, protect the town's interests in law-suits, clean the Civic Center, promote tourism and economic development, and provide other services...   The budget for the 2010-2011 fiscal year shows nearly $6.5M for professional services, slightly above $1M for other contract services and $100,165 for technical services.   The town's overall budget exceeds $72M for the fiscal year, which began July 1...   He said the town has about 5 employees per 1K in population, compared with 10 to 14 employees for other municipalities.   Prescott Valley has about 191 full-time employees, Human Resources Director Danielle Gersper said.   The town's first major project involved out-sourcing operation of the sewer plant to CH2M Hill OMI, which continues to operate it to this day.   OMI also provides water service.   OMI is probably the largest single contractor for the town.   Prescott Valley and OMI officials negotiated a 2% cut in the water/sewer contract for the current fiscal year, bringing the total to just under $3M.   Town officials hired other companies to provide smaller services.   For instance, the Town Council voted Aug. 12 to out-source its utility bill lock-box to CDS Global of Des Moines, IA [a subsidiary of Hearst], at an estimated annual cost of $26K to $29K.   The town's customer accounts division staff has processed 11K to 12K pieces of mail a month, according to Cordell Compton, division manager.   Compton pleaded for the contract with CDS, claiming it would free his staff for 3 to 4 hours a day to perform other tasks, such as collecting delinquent bills.   The council visited the operations of CDS at the Prescott airport industrial park before awarding the contract to the company, which provides billing services for the City of Prescott as well.   While CDS is developing a new relationship with Prescott Valley, OMI and other contractors have enjoyed long-standing relationships.   'It is a good client to us, the fact that we are here and we have been part of Prescott Valley's growth since it incorporated in 1978.', said Dava Hoffman, who founded Dava & Associates Inc., a Prescott-based planning, engineering and surveying service."

2010-08-23
Jim Kouri _Renew America_
illegal alien visa over-stays escape detection

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "Identifying current and future supplies of scientists and engineers is extremely difficult: predictions of an over-supply in the 1970s did not come true, and predictions of shortages in the late 1980s also failed to occur.   What is clear is that S&E [science and engineering] positions are in a state of flux." --- NSF 99-321 _Retention of the Best Science and Engineering Graduates in Science and Engineering_ pg1 (quoted in Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg147)  

 
 

2010-08-24: Florida Primary Election

2010-08-24
Grace Wyler _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
Campbell gets $300K for study of Sherman International's proposed steel mill site
"Sherman has said it plans to build a cold-rolling steel mill on the site.   The plant would employ 700 workers, the company said, and subsequent phases of the project would expand the mill with up to 3,500 employees.   Sherman’s plans depend on whether the city can get an additional $3M in Clean Ohio funds to clean up the site once the environmental assessment is complete, said Mayor George Krinos."
2010-07-17: Grace Wyler: "Sherman International" steel plant proposal marked by questions and promises
alernate link

2010-08-24
Tom Lutey _Billings MT Gazette_/_Lee_
New technology, efficiency drive increase in corn production
"Their plantings were part of a 10K-acre increase this year in the amount of land that Montana farmers put into corn.   Corn acres have been steadily increasing for years, partly because of varieties better suited for Montana’s short growing season, but also because farmers are looking for ways to beat increasing animal feed costs.   'For the current year so far, the estimated total planted acres is 80K.', said Tom Chard of the National Agricultural Statistics Service.   'In 1994, total acres were 60K.'...   Last year, the county planted 12,500 acres, mostly for silage.   Farmers, on average, harvest 182 bushels per acre...   Corn likes daytime temperatures in the 80-degree range, and Yellowstone County has had many days like that this summer...   Haaland said that, when he first planted corn in 1964, a farmer could expect about 7 tons to the acre. Now, he gets 37 tons."

2010-08-24 08:05PDT (11:05EDT) (15:05GMT)
_MarketWatch_
Dean Baker says home prices could sink another 15%

2010-08-24 08:54PDT (11:54EDT) (15:54GMT)
Jeffry Bartash _MarketWatch_
Existing-home sales fell 27.2% in July (with graph)
National Association of Realtors

2010-08-24 12:14PDT (15:14EDT) (19:14GMT)
_MarketWatch_
One-third of teens plan to delay college due to economy and job markets

2010-08-24
Zach Benoit _Billings MT Gazette_
New teachers at Catholic school have varied backgrounds

2010-08-24
Rob Sanchez _V Dare_/_Job Destruction News-Letter_
Out-Sourcing, H-1B And The Coming E-Passport Security Scandal

2010-08-24 (5770 Elul 14)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
Medical Care Facts and Fables

2010-08-24 (5770 Elul 14)
Michael Sheridan _NY Daily News_
DNA tests on 39 living relatives suggests Adolf Hitler had Jewish and African relatives
Allan Hall: UK Daily Mail
Jennie Cohen: History Channel
Heidi Blake: London Telegraph
"Working with historian Marc Vermeeren, the samples were tested and were found to contain a chromosome called Haplopgroup E1b1b (Y-DNA), which is rarely found in Western Europeans.   'It is most commonly found in the Berbers of Morocco, in Algeria, Libya and Tunisia as well as among Ashkenazi and Sephardic Jews.', Vermeeren said in the article...   Haplogroup E1b1b1, which accounts for approximately 18% to 20% of Ashkenazi and 8.6% to 30% of Sephardic Y-chromosomes, appears to be one of the major founding lineages of the Jewish population."

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "With the possible exception of veterans, farmers, and college students, there is no group that squeals more loudly over a reduction of federal subsidies than scientists.   They are the quintessential special interest group, and in effect, they make the oil industry look like a piker.   I'm sure that, like all the others, they feel they are doing God's work, but that's why federal spending is about to cross the one trillion mark." --- Edwin L. Dale 1985-01-18 OMB assistant director for public affairs (quoted in Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg183)  

 
 

2010-08-25

2010-08-25 09:12PDT (12:12EDT) (16:12GMT)
Greg Robb _MarketWatch_
Durable-goods orders up 0.3% in July, down 3.8% when airlines are excluded

2010-08-25 10:58PDT (13:58EDT) (17:58GMT)
Greg Robb _MarketWatch_
New-home sales dropped to 276K per year in July (with graph)

2010-08-25 11:16:46PDT (14:16:46EDT) (18:16:46GMT)
Joe McDonald _San Jose CA Mercury "News"_/_AP_
Red Chinese thugs ban foreign computer security technology
"The rules, dubbed the Multi-Level Protection Scheme, or MLPS, come as Beijing tries to protect its fledgling technology companies by favoring them in procurement, promoting [Red Chinese] standards for mobile phones and prodding foreign competitors to disclose encryption technology."

2010-08-25
_Daily Illini_
U of IL freshman enrollment slightly down; Qualcomm to close Champaign Research Park software development office

2010-08-25
Carolyn Beeler _National Socialist Radio_/_All Things Leftist_
Some Off-Shored Call Centers Return to US Homes (with graph)
"Richard Crespin, director of the Human Resources Out-sourcing Association, says when companies decide whether to out-source over-seas they have to weigh the costs as well as 'the inconvenience of having something distant from you and not close in proximity -- what I would call the pain-in-the-neck factor'.   He says when wages drop in the company's home economy, those companies are less likely to [off-shore] these jobs to other countries. Experts say [off-shore] out-sourcing is still accelerating for jobs in IT services and manufacturing."

2010-08-25 (5770 Elul 15)
Walter E. Williams _Jewish World Review_
Who Cares About Our Future?
"Federal [extortion] receipts for 2009 totaled $2.1T. The largest items in the federal budget were [Socialist Insecurity] ($710G), national defense ($689G), Medicare ($456G) and Medicaid ($327G). The primary recipients of federal spending are seniors. Some of the letters argued that it's unfair to characterize what seniors are getting as handouts because they worked all their lives and paid into [Socialist Insecurity] and Medicare."

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "Of the 3,759 lobbying firms registered in Washington, DC, more than 800 list 'science' as an... activity, according to House of Representatives lobbyist registration records." --- 1998-10-26 _The Scientist_ (quoted in Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg183)  

 
 

2010-08-26

2010-08-26 05:30PDT (08:30EDT) (12:30GMT)
Scott Gibbons & Tony Sznoluch _DoL ETA_
un-employment insurance weekly claims report
DoL home page
DoL OPA press releases
historical data
"The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 380,935 in the week ending Aug. 21, a decrease of 23,613 from the previous week.   There were 457,269 initial claims in the comparable week in 2009.   The advance unadjusted insured unemployment rate was 3.3% during the week ending Aug. 14, a decrease of 0.1 percentage point from the prior week.   The advance unadjusted number for persons claiming UI benefits in state programs totaled 4,197,530, a decrease of 94,893 from the preceding week.   A year earlier, the rate was 4.3% and the volume was 5,681,831.   Extended benefits were available in AL, AK, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, DC, FL, GA ID, IL, IN KS, KY, ME, MA, MI, MN, MO, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, OH, OR, PA, PR, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, WA, WV, and WI during the week ending August 7...   States reported 4,899,646 persons claiming EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) benefits for the week ending Aug. 7, an increase of 199,493 from the prior week.   There were 2,993,925 claimants in the comparable week in 2009.   EUC weekly claims include first, second, third, and fourth tier activity.   [Note that the population used for calculating the "insured unemployment rate" changes
to 132,623,886 beginning 2007-10-06;
to 133,010,953 beginning 2008-01-05;
to 133,382,559 beginning 2008-04-05;
to 133,690,617 beginning 2008-07-05;
to 133,902,387 beginning 2008-10-04;
to 133,886,830 beginning 2009-01-03;
to 133,683,433 beginning 2009-04-04;
to 133,078,480 beginning 2009-07-04;
to 133,823,421 beginning 2009-10-03;
to 131,823,421 beginning 2009-10-17;
to 130,128,328 beginning 2010-01-02;
to 128,298,468 beginning 2010-04-03;
to 126,763,245 beginning 2010-07-03.]
graphs
more graphs

2010-08-26
Denise Dick _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
Algae to energy plant planned
"The land is in the Ohio Works Industrial Park and is on either side of M7 Technologies, near the Brier Hill area on the city's North Side.   The board of control consists of the mayor and law and finance directors.   The company plans to invest about $2.5M to build an algae cultivation and processing facility for energy reuse.   T. Sharon Woodberry, Youngstown's economic development director, said the company plans ponds on the land.   Algae is a by-product of carbon dioxide."

2010-08-26 06:16PDT (09:16EDT) (13:16GMT)
Larry Dignan _Ziff Davis_/_CBS_
Current IT practices are unsustainable, unhealthy, and just plain dysfunctional
"IT is dangerously dependent on an external supply chain. Most enterprises spend 80% to 90% of their IT and telecom spending with outside vendors...   IT buyers gave away their leverage and ability to innovate."

2010-08-26 07:00PDT (10:00EDT) (14:00GMT)
_DoL BLS_
Displaced workers from 2007-2009
"From 2007 January thorugh 2009 December, 6.9M workers were displaced from jobs they had held for at least 3 years...   Displaced workers are defined as persons 20 years of age and older who lost or left jobs because their plant or company closed or moved, there was insufficient work for them to do, or their position or shift was abolished...   In 2010 January, 49% of the 6.9M long-tenured displaced workers were reemployed, down from 67% for the prior survey in 2008 January.   This is lowest reemployment rate on record for the series, which began in 1984.   43% of long-tenured displaced workers cited insufficient work as the reason for their displacement, up from 24% for the previous survey.   Nearly 1 in 4 long-tenured displaced workers lost a job in manufacturing.   Among long-tenured workers who were displaced from full-time wage and salary jobs and who were reemployed in such jobs, 45% had earnings that were as much or more than those on the lost job.   This was lower than the proportion in 2008 January, when 55% of those workers had earnings equal to or greater than those on the lost job."

2010-08-26
Linda M. Linonis _Youngstown OH Vindicator_
36 local Scouts attend Jamboree at Fort A.P. Hill near Bowling Green, VA

2010-08-26
Carol Courter _Conference Board_
SEC voted 3-2 to give share-owners ability to nominate directors and have their names listed on proxies
Ronald D. Orol: MarketWatch
David Weidner: Will anyone use it?

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "By one knowledgeable accounting, the funds annually produced by this branch of lobbying rose from $16.5M in 1980 to $327.8M in 1996, for a grand total of $5.1G during those years." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg184 (citing James D. Savage 1999 _Funding Science in America: Congres, Universities, and the Politics of the Academic Pork Barrel_ pg3)  

 
 

2010-08-27

2010-08-26 21:01PDT (2010-08-27 00:01EDT) (2010-08-27 04:01GMT)
Rex Nutting _MarketWatch_
Forget the semantics; it's jobs that count

2010-08-27 07:02PDT (10:02EDT) (14:02GMT)
Jeffry Bartash _MarketWatch_
UMich consumer sentiment index rose from 67.8 in July to 69.6 in early August to 68.9 in late August
Joseph Lazzaro: AOL
Seeking Alpha
Seeking Alpha/dshort.com graph

2010-08-27 08:32:57PDT (11:32:57EDT) (15:32:57GMT)
Erika Kinetz _San Jose CA Mercury "News"_/_AP_
India government continues to demand easier e-mail privacy violation
"Saudi Arabian officials said this month that they would not ban BlackBerry services after reaching a preliminary agreement with RIM to place a server in the country to facilitate monitoring.   The United Arab Emirates has also threatened a ban, while Indonesia and Lebanon have voiced security concerns.   In India, RIM's offer to lead a security forum revealed tensions between the Canadian company and local players, with one powerful industry group accusing the company of adopting an unhelpful, unilateral approach to negotiations.   'It need not have escalated to this level.', said Rajan Mathews, director general of the Cellular Operators Association of India.   'Folks like RIM have to understand business is done differently here.'"

2010-08-27
_International Law Office_
US District Court for DC dismissed suit by Broadgate against USCIS for Nuefield memo regarding clarification of employment vs. contract/consultant relationship
"'the evidence demonstrates that the Memorandum is intended to provide only guidance for application of the Regulation'"

2010-08-27
Andrew Klavan _City Journal_
Name-Calling: Trying to stifle debate

2010-08-27
_NRA ILA_
EPQ conceded it does not have authority under TSCA to ban ammunition which contains lead

2010-08-27 (5770 Elul 17)
R' Pinchas Winston _Torah.org_
Fighting Our Yetzer Haras (bad inclinations)

2010-08-27 (5770 Elul 17)
R' Yissocher Frand _Torah.org_
Do you learn? Whenever I have the time.

2010-08-27 (5770 Elul 17)
Caroline B. Glick _Jewish World Review_
Accepting the unacceptable

2010-08-27 (5770 Elul 17)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
"Moral Hazard" in Politics

2010-08-27
DJIA10,150.65
S&P 5001,064.59
NASDAQ2,153.63
Nikkei8,991
10-year US T-Bond2.64
crude oil$75.17/barrel
gold$1,237.90/ounce
silver$19.04/ounce
platinum$1,537.00/ounce
palladium$503.03/ounce
copper$0.21153125/ounce
natgas$3.651/MBTU
reformulatedgasoline $1.95/gal
heatingoil$1.971/gal
soybeans$10.26/bushel
maize$4.36/bushel
wheat$6.95/bushel
dollarindex82.88
yenperdollar85.25
dollarspereuro1.2733
dollarsperpound1.5511
swissfranksperdollar 1.0294
indianrupeesperdollar 46.90
mexicanpesosperdollar 13.005
MorganStanleyHighTechIndex530.47

I usually get this info from MarketWatch.
 

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "On 1998-03-23, the NSF hosted a 4-hour meeting at its head-quarters to introduce and discuss a melange of mis-information and anxieties incorporated into a 174-page report by Jim Hartz, a former TV science journalist, and Rich Chappell, a former astronaug serving as associate director for science at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center.   Titled _Worlds Apart: How the Distance Between Science and Journalism Threatens America's Future_, the publication, and the 'research' it incorporated, emanated from outside the scientific enterprise but pandered to science's grievances of poor understanding and news-media neglect.   The publisher was First Amendment Center (based at Vanderbilt University, though not part of it), through the beneficence of the Freedom Forum (formerly the Gannett Foundation).   The message was one of anguish and despair, of the variety streaming for decades from the missionaries of science laboring in the cause of the public understanding of science.   Though fantastical in its garbling of statistics and history, the publication was ideologically correct in its representation of science friendless and sinking, and therefore rated the hospitality of the prestigious NSF." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pp226-227  

 
 

2010-08-28

2010-08-28
Vivek Wadhwa _TechCrunch_
Silicon Valley's Dark Secret: It's all about age
Slash Dot
Dave Winer: Scripting
Norm Matloff _H-1B/ L-1/ Off-Shoring News-Letter_
the forgotten central issue with the H-1B visa program is age discrimination
In spite of all the interest in the issue of foreign tech workers in the U.S.A. -- both among affected parties such as engineers and programmers, and analysts such as journalists, academics or policy-makers -- very few understand that the issue is fundamentally about AGE.   Young workers earn lower wages (and cost less in benefits) than older ones, so employers use the H-1B and other programs to greatly expand the pool of young workers to hire from.
 
In my article for the California Labor & Employment Law Review (pdf) I showed the stark age/wage difference in the computer field:
 
group25th percentilemedian90th percentile new grads$45,000$50,664$61,500 all workers$65,070$82,120$120,410
 
As a result, in the last 20 years, a rampant age problem has arisen in this profession.   "Old" in this field now means 35, not 55.   Though there are certainly counterexamples, programmers typically find that their employability decreases markedly 10-15 years after they finish school.   Again, the problem is that they have become too expensive.
 
[The] column by Vivek Wadhwa [above] and a WSJ piece [linked below] by Pui-Wing Tam, show the age story well -- even though the second does not explicitly mention age.
 
The title of Vivek's column says it all-- "Silicon Valley's Dark Secret: It's All About Age" -- and what he writes is correct (save for one detail).   But the material in the Journal piece is actually the more important of the 2, as it vividly (though unwittingly) shows how employers manage to avoid the older workers without running into age discrimination suits.
 
BTW, Vivek is correct about MSFT's hiring mainly young people, but he lets them off the hook too easily, saying they hire mainly the young because the positions they have are mainly for the young.   That's backwards; they have positions mainly for the young because they WANT to hire mainly young workers.
 
Connection to H-1B
 
What about the connection of age to H-1B? There are of course other reasons why employers hire so many H-1Bs, not just the age issue.   For instance, academic and government studies have shown that young H-1Bs have lower salaries than young U.S. citizens and permanent residents.   (This is a complex issue, with a number of faulty studies on both sides.   If you are are recently-added subscriber to this e-news-letter, contact me for the details.)   In addition, the de facto indentured servant nature of the H-1Bs is a big factor with many employers too.   Furthermore there is a lot of ethnic favoritism as well, with Indians hiring Indians, Russians hiring Russians and so on.
 
But the age issue is huge, and in my long observation of this issue, I've found it to be the prime reason for the popularity of the visa among employers.   It is no coincidence that the DoL data show that most H-1Bs are young.
 
Mind you, neither of the two articles below mentions H-1B.   But Vivek has mentioned the relation between the H-1B and age issues before, and the connection is obvious and simple:   When employers run out of young Americans to hire (meaning those employers who don't already favor hiring the foreigners to begin with), they hire the young H-1Bs--in lieu of older Americans.
 
One point Vivek misses is that those short programming careers he describes did not used to be the norm.   In the old pre-H-1B days, it was common for programmers to work in the field for their entire careers.   But now with large numbers of young H-1Bs available, the employers tend to shun the older workers.
 
If you wish to look at this statistically, see my University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform article (pdf).   There I show that civil engineers have much longer careers than do programmers, even though the 2 fields require the same talents, such as attention to detail, strong analytical skills and so on, and rise to management at similar rates.   See the article for details, but the point is the reason for the difference in career longevity between the two professions is that rather few employers of civil engineers hire H-1Bs, whereas it is standard in the computer field.
 
An interesting surprise reaction to Vivek's piece on ageism came from Greg Siskind (2010 Aug. 28), a prominent immigration attorney.   Lo and behold, even Siskind concedes the connection between H-1B and the age issue.   Commenting on Vivek's age column, Siskind says:
 
Vivek Wadhwa writes a piece that while not about immigration, certainly is relevant to the debate regarding skilled worker immigration.   He discusses the ruthless beast that is the high tech world when it comes to how older engineers are treated and why the industry simultaneously faces a shortage and a surplus of talent.   Regardless of whether immigrants are in the picture or not, the questions regarding how best to address the career problems faced by older tech workers are serious and difficult.   When we can get our hands around this issue, we might be able to start making decisions on skilled worker immigration that meet the country's long term needs.
 
The Skills Issue
 
One of the industry lobbyists' favorite lines is that the reason older tech workers have trouble in the job market is that they have let their skill sets become out of date.   The lobbyists know that this line sells well with the public, because the public has this image of the computer field being one of blindingly-fast change.   But the fact is that the issue of changing skill sets is mainly used as a pretext to avoid hiring the older workers.   Let's take a look at the validity, or lack of same, of the skills issue.
 
Vivek correctly says employers prefer to hire a new grad with no skills than an older worker with out-of-date skills, but he's stating only half the problem here.   The other half is that employers also prefer the younger worker with current skills to the older workers with current skills.   In both cases, it's a simple matter of money.   Vivek has stated this for instance in a radio interview:
 
...even if the [older] $120K programmer gets the right skills, companies would rather hire the younger workers.   That's really what's behind this.
 
See my University of Michigan article for the long version of why it is NOT a skills issue, but here are two quick "sound bites" to give you an idea of the situation:


 
The WSJ article is a great mini-case study of how skills fads -- and "shortages" -- develop in Silicon Valley.   The article reports that just a couple of years ago, those with skills in Flash video technology "had thin job prospects", and yet now there suddenly is a "shortage" of these workers.
 
Among other things, this refutes the industry lobbyists' other favorite line, that the "shortages" are due to the universities' not graduating enough students in tech fields.   Instead, the industry is creating its own "shortages", by setting inappropriate hiring criteria, either out of HR action (see below) or deliberately in order to justify a green card sponsorship.   Let me elaborate on these points.
 
Vivek says, "Talk to those working at any Silicon Valley company, and they will tell you how hard it is to find qualified talent [but they won't tell you exactly what effort they expended]."   Unfortunately, this is like the parable of 4 blind boys touching an elephant; Vivek doesn't realize that the people he talks to aren't seeing the whole elephant.
 
The engineers and hiring managers are at the mercy of HR.   The latter receives tons of CVs via the web or mail, and needs weeder-outers.   They then toss out anyone who's not an exact or near-exact fit to the "required" skill set.   The more CVs they receive, the more HR adds job requirements, to keep the number of applicants they work with down to a manageable size.   And most importantly, they put aside the older workers, typically even those who are an exact/near-exact fit.   As a result, the hiring managers don't receive these CVs from HR, and mistakenly conclude that there were no qualified applicants.   Also, as mentioned, if the company is sponsoring a worker for a green card, they'll over0define skills requirements to insure that only the sponsoree is "qualified" for the position.
 
Vivek is correct in saying that new skills can be picked up in a month.   I've said it can be done in a couple of weeks, in the sense that the programmer will be productive in that skill within that time; he/she will learn more facets of the skill as the need arises.   Most programmers work in teams, on only one little slice of an overall project, and thus don't need to immediately know every nook and cranny of a programming language or whatever the skill involves.   I've got data on this in my University of Michigan article.
 
Employer Hsu in Ms. Tam's piece below states the time needed for learning Flash is 6 months.   I doubt that, but in any case what's interesting is that his figure is for people who don't know Flash at all, whereas elsewhere in the article it states that there are plenty of Flash programmers around, but they just don't know the power management aspect.   The latter can't be that deep, and should be learnable within a week.
 
So where is the alleged "shortage", and why is Mr. Hsu hiring people who don't know Flash at all, when he could hire those with Flash experience and allow them to pick up the power management aspects on the job?   The answer likely is the one given by Vivek; Hsu simply doesn't want to pay so much.   Even Vivek's figure of $150K shows up in the WSJ piece.
 
I don't know whether Hsu is hiring H-1Bs, but I'll bet dollars to doughnuts that he's hiring young.
 
Norm
Pui-Wing Tam: WSJ: Flash Back: Demand Up in Engineering Specialty

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "according tothe NSF, the official fount of research statistics, 'The Federal Government provides the majority of funds for basic research' -- 58% of all expenditures for basic research in 1996.   And research financed by universities has increased, rather than declined.   Between 1987 and 1996, universities, in the aggregate, doubled their own spending on research, from $2.1G to $4.1G, according to NSF...   In fact, industry spends substantial sums on basic research suited to its needs: $5.1G in 1995, $6.6G in 1996, and $7.2G in 1997... biological sciences and biotechnology... rank high, but industry also supports basic research in electronics, materials, chemistry, and other disciplines." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg229  

 
 

2010-08-29

2010-08-29
Diane Cochran _Billings MT Gazette_/_Lee_
Old School

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "Lawyers are expected to make the best of a bad case; scientists are expected to reject a faulty hypothesis.   Lawyers and politicians are not renowned for meticulous adherence to the truth.   OTOH, the historically enshrined ethos of science, though not infrequently violated, is bound up with truthfulness, precision, objectivity, and other pristine qualities.   In notices in scientific journals, scientists routinely fess up to errors, even trivial errors, in previously published papers." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg259  

 
 

2010-08-30

2010-08-30
Jeff Lukens _View from 1776_
Restoring Honor: A New American Awakening?

2010-08-30
Thomas E. Brewton _View from 1776_
Surge in Iraq worked: Stimulus costs more and failed

2010-08-30 07:00PDT (10:00EDT) (14:00GMT)
Jason Hiner _Ziff Davis_/_CBS_
Andy Grove: Is the USA's tech industry oiling its own guillotine?
"Long term, we need a job-centric economic theory -- and job-centric political leadership -- to guide our plans and actions...   The first task is to rebuild our industrial commons.   We should develop a system of financial incentives: Levy an extra tax on the product of offshored labor.   (If the result is a trade war, treat it like other wars -- fight to win.)   Keep that money separate.   Deposit it in the coffers of what we might call the Scaling Bank of the U.S.A. and make these sums available to companies that will scale their American operations.   Such a system would be a daily reminder that while pursuing our company goals, all of us in business have a responsibility to maintain the industrial base on which we depend and the society whose adaptability -- and stability -- we may have taken for granted...   If what I'm suggesting sounds protectionist, so be it."

2010-08-30 12:07PDT (15:07EDT) (19:07GMT)
Andrea Coombes _MarketWatch_
Intuit: Hiring by small businesses up, but at a slower pace

2010-08-30
_India Business Standard_/_International Business Times_/_Rediff_
Infosys plans to launch "extreme off-shoring" tactic to lobby for even more of the already vastly excessive H-1B visas
"According to the company, the number of visa renewals has fallen 80% in the last 3 years.   Infosys today employs around 13K people in the USA, of which the approximate number of H-1B visa holders is 8,900 and L-1 visas around 1,800.   This does not include figures for its BPO subsidiary and other wholly-owned subsidiaries.   [13K - 8,900 H-1Bs - 1,800 L-1s = 2,300 other workers employed by Infosys in the USA, so that leaves a maximum of 2,300 US citizen employees of Infosys in the USA, since other visas (F with OPT, TN...) can be used and abused for the same purpose.]"

2010-08-30
Rabbi Doctor Asher Meir _Jewish World Review_
Bogus job interviews

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "In the ledgers of corruption in America, these and similar episodes would barely rate a foot-note, if any notice.   However, where ethical sensitivity still survives in science, they are regarded with the deepest concern.   Public trust under-pins the sovereignty and support of science.   There is nothing inherently unwholesome, let alone corrupt, about corporate relations with academic science; the production of knowledge in universities, and its conversion into goods and services by business and industry, is a process ingrained in the economy, culture, and politics of America.   Within that process, science built public trust by demonstrating truthfulness, openness, and dedication to public benefit, qualities that fortified it against the money-making imperatives of the market.   As we have seen, and will explore further, those qualities are receding." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg358  

 
 

2010-08-31: 9 weeks to USA elections

2010-08-30 21:01PDT (2010-08-31 00:01EDT) (2010-08-31 04:01GMT)
Paul B. Farrell _MarketWatch_
7 lean years: No recovery until 2016

2010-08-31 03:14PDT (06:14EDT) (10:14GMT)
William L. Watts _MarketWatch_
German unemployment declined in August
"Eurostat estimated there were 15.83M unemployed workers in the euro zone, down by 8K from June."

2010-08-31
_Conference Board_
Consumer Confidence Up, but Job Markets Continue to Worsen
Ruth Mantell: MarketWatch
"Those claiming business conditions are 'good' decreased to 8.7% from 8.8%.   However, those stating business conditions are 'bad' declined to 41.9% from 43.3%.   Consumers' assessment of the labor market deteriorated further.   Those saying jobs are 'hard to get' increased to 45.7% from 45.1%, while those claiming jobs are 'plentiful' declined to 3.8% from 4.4%."

2010-08-31 07:26PDT (10:26EDT) (14:26GMT)
Greg Robb _MarketWatch_
US home prices rose 1% in June
"14.3% rise in San Francisco... San Diego, up 11.2%; Minneapolis, up 10.7%; Los Angeles, up 9.2%; Washington, up 7.3%; Phoenix, up 6.0%; Boston, up 3.4%; Atlanta up 2.0%; Denver, up 1.8%; Dallas, up 1.2%; Miami, up 1.1%; Cleveland, up 0.8%; Detroit, up 0.8%; Portland, up 0.2%; New York, up 0.2%.   Chicago, down 0.1%; Tampa, down 1.6%; Seattle, down 1.8%; Charlotte, down 2.7%; and Las Vegas, down 5.2%.

2010-08-31 10:45PDT (13:45EDT) (17:45GMT)
_BusinessWeek_/_AP_
SIA spent $160K on lobbying in 2010Q2
"on patent reform efforts, tax matters and education funding... immigration issues and H-1B visas and the Federal Communications Commission's national broadband plan, which lays out a road-map for bringing high-speed Internet connections to all Americans."

2010-08-31
Mary Pickett _Billings MT Gazette_/_Lee_
Ground-breaking for MSU Billings experimental wind-turbine will be Friday
"The main purpose of the 10-kilowatt turbine is to provide hands-on experience in wind energy generation to students in the COT's new sustainable-energy technology program, said John Cech, dean of the college...   The 42-foot-tall COT turbine doesn't have the large propellers that some wind generators do.   Instead, long rectangular panels rotate around a vertical center pole.   The turbine, which is expected to be running by Thanksgiving, is made by a Taisei Techno Co. of Japan with some components locally produced.   Roscoe Steel [a local firm] is making the support structure, said Eakle Barfield, MSU Billings facility services director.   Eventually, the turbine will be donated to MSU Billings...   Warren Lewis has been hired as an instructor for the 'sustainable-energy' program.   He is a professional engineer and has experience in 'alternative' energy, including at the Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico [which has been doing 'alternative' energy research since the 1970s]."

2010-08-31
Paige Chapman _Chronicle of Higher Education_
MT libraries create final resting place to memorialize failed library search applications

2010-08-31
_UPI_
Putin invites auto-makers to set up shop in Russia, offers protective tariffs as incentive

2010-08-31
Robert Gehrke _Salt Lake UT Tribune_
Over $65M of tax-victims' earnings are taken and spent on illegal aliens and their children in Utah

2010-08-31
Susan Carroll _Houston TX Chronicle_
Non-Feasance: ICE is not cracking down on employers of illegal aliens
"Immigration inspectors poring over the hiring paper-work of a California company last summer found that 262 employees -- a whopping 93% of the total work-force -- had 'suspect' documents on file.   At an Illinois service company, auditors found dubious documents for nearly 8 in 10 [80%] of its 200-plus employees.   Inspectors examining records at a Texas manufacturing firm found suspicious paper-work for more than half of the 107 employees on the pay-roll.   But the companies didn't pay a penny in fines.   None of the employers was led away in hand-cuffs.   Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials didn't even issue them a formal warning, the agency's internal records show...   But ICE audit records obtained recently through a Freedom of Information Act [FOIA] request show that the agency has, in many instances, failed to punish companies found to have significant numbers or high percentages of workers with questionable documents.   In response to the public records request, ICE provided limited details on about 430 audit cases listed as 'closed' by the agency through February...   U.S. representative Lamar Smith, R-San Antonio, said the audits can be an effective part of an overall enforcement strategy, but that many employers consider them just a cost of doing business."

2010-08-31
William L. Anderson
More proof that the stimulus did not work

2010-08-31 (5770 Elul 21)
Thomas Sowell _Jewish World Review_
The Mosque Controversy
"The proposed mosque near where the World Trade Center was attacked and destroyed, along with thousands of American lives, would be a 15-story middle finger to America.   It takes a high IQ to evade the obvious, so it is not surprising that the intelligentsia are out in force, decrying those who criticize this calculated insult.   What may surprise some people is that the American [tax-victim] is currently financing a trip to the Middle East by the imam who is pushing this project, so that he can raise the money to build it.   The State Department is subsidizing his travel."

++ S887; Durbin, Grassley; H-1B and L-1 visa program reform
Status of S877
+++ S2804; Sanders; Employ Americans: prohibit firms who lay off large numbers of capable US citizens from making use of guest-work visas
---- HR5658; Shadegg; STEM Job Destruction Act
more of what congress-critters are up to
 
 

  "Noting lingering anxieties about shortages of scientists and engineers, [Edward E. David] observed that 'the opposite seems to be in prospect', adding that 'the number of out-of-work scientists is still increasing.   I know first hand about this trend in NJ and CA.   Down-sizings and lay-offs are likely to continue.', he predicted.   In the new science economy, David warned, federal agencies would shift support to contracts for 'targeted R&D', at the expense of investigator-initiated basic research, the revered ultimate in scientific independence." --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg371  

 
 



Proposed Bills 2010


Congressional candidate fund-raising, expenditures, and debt
 

USA Over-Population Clock
World + USA Over-Population Clocks
Jimbo Wales's WikiPedia on World Over-Population
 

  "A Clinton aide assigned to [make nice with] the scientists -- an especially insistent lot about their concerns -- confided to me, with eye-rolling exasperation, 'It's like talking to mental patients.   You have to look like you take them serously [even though you don't].'" --- Daniel S. Greenberg 2001 _Science, Money, and Politics: Political Triumph and Ethical Erosion_ pg371 (also reported by Greenberg in his 1992-12-01 _Science & Government Report_)  

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