Monday, June 25, 2007

Agitprop Dissection

A friend of mine sent me this YouTube clip. It captures a legal seminar discussing how to take out fake ads in newspapers and thread the H-1b loophole. Here's the description posted on YouTube, followed by the clip:

Immigration attorneys from Cohen & Grigsby explains how they assist employers in running classified ads with the goal of NOT finding any qualified applicants, and the steps they go through to disqualify even the most qualified Americans in order to secure green cards for H-1b workers. See what Bush and Congress really mean by a "shortage of skilled U.S. workers." Microsoft, Oracle, Hewlett-Packard, and thousands of other companies are running fake ads in Sunday newspapers across the country each week.

Is this total BS? Does it make you angry? If so, at whom?

At lawyers? At "businesses"? At Congress? At George Bush?

It would have riled up a younger C-Nut, but seeing it now I am unmoved.

For sure, the lawyer is a parasitic weed. But the profession proliferates because politicians are always complicating, rather than streamlining, the law. The only thing that will defang the tort lobby is a shrinkage of government.

Get mad at "businesses"?

Well, corporations are rational profit-seeking entities. They will operate within whatever legal climate prevails. Getting mad at "businesses" makes as much sense as scorning a rock for obeying the laws of gravitation.

Small minds everywhere try to personify lifeless business - usually by conflating it with "management". Tireless CEO bashing, Sarbanes-Oxley, the assault on stock option accounting, etc., altogether it's nothing more than today's version of age-old class war.

If you look at this clip on YouTube you'll see that the "links" to this video all come from letterless, junior-Commi websites. These clowns' position is decidedly under-nuanced - they are around-the-clock business bashers.

The clip has little to do with the current immigration debate. If anything, as opposed to unskilled aspiring gardeners wading the Rio Grande, the government is TOO RESTRICTIVE on H-1b visas; we simply need more highly skilled immigrants. Most of these H-1b applicants are PhD scientists whose jobs will be outsourced to Asia or India with a click of the mouse.

So essentially, to argue for tightening America's H-1b visa policy is to not only miss the boat, but to miss the ocean. These are the most productive immigrants coming here and the most unfairly stymied applicants. This one section is THE ONLY part of our immigration policy that needs liberalizing. Read about my "cover charge" suggestion in the comment thread of this post.

Our immigration (and enforcement) policy really is bass-ackwards in terms of whom it favors and whom it keeps out.

Blame is ubiquitous in Moronic illegal immigration debate. Anytime you hear someone blame businesses, your Commi-dar should beep and remind you of their larger agenda.

On such a multi-layered issue as immigration, too many people boil it all down to one bogeyman. It never ceases to amaze me how many people truly believe that free market capitalism is the source of all their woe.

Too bad we can't throw them to the back of a wintertime Soviet bread line where they can ponder their prejudice.


Taylor Conant said...

Hi C-Nut,

I thought you went on a trip to PR? I am amazed that you keep updating the site.

Anyway, I was happy to see you share my position on part of the immigration issue regarding blaming businesses... punishing businesses and business-owners for the inevitable failures of socialist policies is not fair and in the end is counter-productive... maybe not from the perspective of government bureaucrats hellbent on ruining the economy, but definitely in the most general sense of the word.

Trying to get business owners to police their employee ranks themselves is fascist. It's a clear violation of a business owner's property right in his business-- it's HIS business, he can hire WHOMEVER he likes, whether the person is "legal" or not. I say it's fascist because it's an instance of the government nominally allowing a private enterprise to exist yet still trying to exert some control over how the business operates (isn't this how BMW, for instance, survived WWII, for instance? Nominally privately-owned but in reality it was run for the benefit of the war effort and the state?)

I also agree with you that most people who bash business over this issue are Commies-in-disguise. My Commi-dar is deafening at times.

However, I do have to say that the more I read and think about things the more it becomes obvious that there are a lot of businesses who are more than happy to climb into bed with gov and help engineer policies that they can profit from. I'm with you in that I believe overall capitalism makes the most sense and is of most benefit to the most people... but we can't be blinded by that realization and not see that some businesses are lead by stupid or evil people who will take advantage of others or simply provide a shitty product and a shitty service. Normally the market would kick their asses, but when they suck off the government, it's not quite that easy.

I also have to say that I take issue with using "we," as in "we" need more PhDs in this country. Maybe you feel more PhDs would be to your benefit, but speaking for myself I don't give a crap, to be honest. I think that whatever the market comes up with (based on wage fluctuations) works for me... I mean it really isn't my business, and I am not about to use or advocate the use of force to create the ideal employment/immigration patterns that I can think up.

In that light, I always wonder why people who are so quick to support immigration restrictions, ostensibly for non-cultural, economic reasons (wage depression, "job stealing," etc.) are not able to follow their logic through to the inter-state, intra-national level. In other words, why aren't they screaming "Damn dirty Ohioans, comin' over an' stealin' all our jobs! We need a visa program to keep all them Ohioans out!" or something like that. If international free flow of labor is an evil, why isn't intranational free flow of labor? Because we have a Constitution? So what?

CaptiousNut said...

You are correct. It was poor (lazy?) diction on my part to state that we "need" more PhDs.

What I should have said, is that high tech businesses would like to bring in more overseas talent but cannot. The fact that these workers can't freely come here reduces our economic competitiveness (unless they go to work for a US multinational in another country). How negative this really is, is of course thoroughly subjective.

Generally speaking, many people that support immigration restrictions are also against intra-national job mobility. They are the union members, the "tenured" professors, the "certified" teachers, the "licensed" plumbers, et al.

Taylor Conant said...


The fact that these workers can't freely come here reduces our economic competitiveness

Again... "our" economic competitiveness? I don't feel like my ec is affected by how many PhDs get into this country as I don't have a PhD, won't have a PhD and therefore probably won't be competing with anyone with a PhD.

And generally speaking you're probably right, but you're against open immigration, right? So it's kind of beside the point in this situation at least. My inquiry was centered around people like you, who are against open immigration but seem to have no criticisms against intranational immigration. How is such a position logically consistent? If you want to pull the "citizenship" card, I guess I'd have to ask you why that's significant or meaningful, because if you claim citizenship gives a person some special rights then you must also believe that you are without rights without a government that claims you as its own, and you must also believe that the government can make such a claim rightfully to begin with.