Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Pittsburgh's Problems According to Jim

So, it took a couple days for it to trickle through the blogosphere to me, but I have now read and pondered, Jim Marczak's Opinion 250. I work in IT and can tell you for sure that there's a lot of room for competent foreigners in the industry (and probably other ones as well). I can understand the emotional argument that "they'll take our jobs," I can. However, what's good for the economy, is good for 99% of Americans and when you consider what is good for the economy you need numbers not emotions. The numbers say H1-B Visas and Outsourcing are good for the economy. It takes a substantial investment (many thousands of dollars) to process the paperwork for an H1-B and you have to show that there aren't any Americans who can do the job. I agree that it should be harder to hire a foreigner then an American, but isn't that enough hoops to jump through? Why have an arbitrary cap on the number of visas?

That being said, so far this year many Democrats have expressed their interest in shutting down our borders economically (see the NAFTA campaign fiasco). I sincerely hope Jim's article made a few Burghers aware that allowing more foreigners inside our borders would be GOOD for us, but I doubt it. In this world of patriotic headlines without substantive stories "They Took Our Jobs" crushes sound macroeconomics every time.

Oh, one other point on this, if we don't allow foreign laborers (skilled or not) in to our tax system then who's going to pay for my baby boomer parents' medicare? If there's a few enterprising young Europeans or Asians that want to help out with that, I'm happy to let them.

Other noteworthy clippings from my morning tour of cyber space:
  • Awwww... Bill Cosby got CMU a puppy, anyone else confused?
  • Penn State received $15.3 Million in Congressional Earmarks. I'm not a fan of ear marks at all, but unfortunately it's how Washington works right now, so get while the getting is good.
  • The Fed lowered rates to 2.75%... I'm waiting to refinance my house when the banks have to pay me.
  • 10 Reasons to love the Bucs - Good stuff.
  • There was something about the Mayor calling the police chief because the officers at Calico Jack's on St. Patty's Day (where the mayor was celebrating) weren't wearing their hats. I have to be honest, I don't read the Trib, so I don't know how seriously to take the "Whispers" section.
  • Interesting note from The Blurgh about San Diegoins or San Diegoites or San Diegoers (spell check said they are all wrong) trying to Party Like it's Pittsburgh

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