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You can interview but they ain't callin' you back

01/31/12

You can interview but they ain't callin' you back

"Texas woman talks to President Obama in Google Plus 'hangout'" reports McClatchy:

Jennifer Wedel was one of five people selected to take part in a live video chat Monday with the president through the "hangout" feature on Google Plus, the search engine's social networking site.

Wedel asked why U.S. companies were allowed to use a controversial program to hire high-skilled foreign workers when her husband, Darin, has similar skills and can't find full-time work. Darin Wedel lost his job at Texas Instruments about three years ago.

"My question to you is to why does the government continue to issue and extend H-1B visas when there are tons of Americans just like my husband with no job?" she asked.

Obama offered that industry leaders have told him that there aren't enough of certain kinds of high-tech engineers in America to meet their needs. Jennifer Wedel interrupted him to explain that that answer didn't match what her husband is seeing out in the real world.

Hopefully, he just won't take "industry's" word for it. I've long been skeptical of these claims.

  04:15:00 pm by Ragamuffin, Categories: Politics

5 comments

Comment from: ibotobob [Visitor]
ibotobob

Interrupting the president? If her husband has similar attitude problems, they might find the explanation right there. (I didn't watch the video, I don't know how she interrupted him, but I do understand that with politicians or other people versed in the art of the on-screen debate it's sometimes the only way of not having to listen through a 15-minute monologue.)

01/31/12 @ 16:35
Comment from: grygus [Member]
grygus

Is that relevant? Even assuming her husband is a complete ass, there are plenty of other people in the same position who aren't, so her question would remain pertinent. Unemployment is far too high to assume that these are all unemployable bums.

02/01/12 @ 05:07
Comment from: AngrySquirrel [Visitor]
AngrySquirrel

The number of unemployed or underemployed engineers and other skill/knowledge workers in this country is not a small one; The state of Michigan alone is full of them (I believe I read an estimate of 30k at one point).

When companies talk about American workers not having the skills they want, what they often mean is "we want people who'll work really cheap and have nothing better to do". Young foreign workers frequently fit this bill, even when they're located here.

02/01/12 @ 11:57
Comment from: ibotobob [Visitor]
ibotobob

Of course my post was a joke. The statement that unemployment affects only the badly educated is a lie to divert from the fact that the economic crisis is real. so it's important to highlight that this is really a crisis which affects people independent of qualification.

Now, how large is the number H1B's compared to the number of people of similar qualification working in the US? If it's a small fraction, then companies might well be searching for very specific qualifications which can only be provided by very few people and the H1Bs make sense. I doubt this is true, and even if it were, that doesn't mean that a company willing to spend a little more couldn't train an American to do the job.

02/01/12 @ 16:31
Comment from: grygus [Member]
grygus

I believe the number of H1Bs hovers around 100,000. So it's not a primary cause of unemployment among Americans but the numbers are too large for the claims of exceptionalism to be credible.

02/01/12 @ 18:01
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