pondelok, 4. júla 2011

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  • texanmom
    09-27 05:21 PM
    After 8 yrs of Bush, I sure am ready for Democrats to take over. America needs a change. But Sen. Obama's victory will surely spell doom and gloom for the EB community - of which I am one.

    I have been in the United States for 9 years - LEGALLY. I have bent over backwards to follow the letter of the law, irrespective of how convoluted it is. My kids are American Citizens. I pay taxes and contribute to the American economy. We even bought a house here in the hope that we can settle down in America. Me and my husband hold executive level positions in major multinationals. Here is the absolute kicker - I work in Satellite Telecommunications and my company supports the United States Government (DoD) and its contractors/ sub contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan!!

    We wanted Democrats to win...but guess what - the failed CIR 2007 woke us up to the fact that Sen. Durbin will never make it easy for us EB immigrants. His hostility towards this community forced us to secure the Canadian PR. We have a little bit more time to decide when we want to move there before our PR expires. If things don't take a turn for the better on the Immigration front, we will move to Canada. I just dread having to sell the house here though!!

    Till date, I only see Durbin driving immigration - and it is definitely against teh EB community. My question to Sen.Obama - what do you have to offer to us, the highly skilled immigrants? Would you rather we just liquidate all our assets (home, stocks, bonds, vehicles, etc) here in America and take it with us to another country that is more welcoming???




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  • Macaca
    12-30 06:41 PM
    India vs. China in 2010 (http://blogs.wsj.com/indiarealtime/2010/12/30/india-vs-china-in-2010/) By Tripti Lahiri | IndiaRealTime

    Economists and western political leaders love to compare India and China, and it�s an understandably irresistible comparison: They�re both rising Asian economies with more than a billion people, and neighbors to boot.

    On India Real Time we�ve done a little of that ourselves from time to time.

    If you�re pressed for time we can sum it up like this: China has more of everything (except poor people.) If you�re not, here are five blogs that stacked India and China up against each other on different indicators in the past year.

    Warren Buffett: The billionaire from Omaha so far has appeared to be leaning a bit more towards China, at least in terms of investments. Mr. Buffett�s company, Berkshire Hathaway Co., holds a sizeable stake in Chinese battery and auto-maker BYD Co. And Mr. Buffett visited in September, along with Bill Gates, hoping to convince Chinese billionaires to give away more of their wealth to charity. The love is returned, with a Chinese man having paid a record $2.1 million to have a one-on-one lunch with the investing wizard.

    Mr. Buffett has said that he�d like to invest in India but his plans have been stymied by caps on foreign holdings in insurance.

    However, India can at least look forward to hosting him in the new year. The billionaire announced at a shareholders� meeting this year, in response to a question from a young Indian-American, that he plans to visit India in 2011, perhaps in March.

    The big-ticket event: India hosted the Commonwealth Games in October, China hosted the Asian Games in November. Of course, China�s already hosted the Olympics�and how�so it hardly seems fair to compare the two.

    But we did anyway. The news coverage of the Indian Games was rife with words like �delays,� �corruption,� �shambles� (we�re pretty sure that was the British press) and �filthy� until the opening night extravaganza quelled criticism for a bit.

    China, it appeared, had lovely, shiny venues ready to go about five months ahead of the event, so it could spend the final days flicking away little specks of dust from its Games merchandise.

    Their middle classes: According to a report on Asia�s middle classes this year, India still has about 650 million people living on under $2 dollars a day measured in 2005 purchasing parity dollars.

    China now has less than 100 million living on that amount. Yet there was a time, as recently as the 1990s, when the two countries had similar numbers of poor. China has just done a better job of lifting people from that bracket into the middle class, and not just onto the next rung �the $2 to $4 range, where a majority of India�s middle class folks fall.

    The majority of Chinese now fall in the �mid middle class� category that can spend $5 to $10, a group whose numbers appear to have quadrupled between 1995 and 2007.

    But don�t blame the slower rate of reduction in poverty on India�s political system, says John Lee of the Sydney-based think-tank Center for Independent Studies.

    The economy, stupid: China is still a much bigger economy than India, even though the two countries have roughly similar numbers of people. At a Hindustan Times conference on India, Shashi Ruia, chairman of Essar Group, compared the two countries on steel production, car production and trade.

    As we already said, China does more of everything. The gap is undoubtedly glaring on roads, electricity production, trains and other infrastructure.

    Surfing: India�s and China�s online populations belong to different worlds, judging by their Google searches. India appears to be firmly embedded in the English-speaking western world, looking for products like Nokia and applications like Facebook, Yahoo! and YouTube, although when it comes to films, it�s all Bollywood. China seemed to be the reverse�relying largely on Chinese applications but much more likely to seek out Hollywood films. They did have this much in common though: outr� pop star Lady Gaga.


    India and China in 2010 (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203525404576050850667532420.html) IndiaRealTime




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  • my2cents
    05-03 07:55 AM
    For 330K house, the calculations are probably splitting hairs. If it had already lost value to what the income in your area can support, then it is good time. But if it is still going down, I would rather buy a house at the bottom even if the interest rate gets higher. I can sell the house immediately without loss, if I have too.

    You think buying and selling a home a joke. You look on an average for 3-5 month to buy a home and one fine day u woke up and interest rate is high u plan to sell. This may be even possible only when u have bought house for pure investment.

    Once you move to ur first house with ur family. you will not sell ur house until u r forced to because of job/other extreme factors.

    Location is most important that any thing. It is very very localized. do u think manhattan house price went down..in fact it went up. Similarly DC metro area is relatively stronger compare to mid west.

    A bit of luck is always there in every single thing. Predicting bottom/peak is always challenge.

    One funny thing..people are planning how to sell before they even look for house to buy. lol..




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  • insbaby
    03-25 06:56 AM
    Awesome piece of advice..I've got to meet ya!!

    Because you Can't Leave America.



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  • xyzgc
    12-26 01:04 PM
    India is already at war with the terrorist state of Pakistan! Just that we never realize it and try to talk about peace all the time...you can see what Pakis have done to curb terrorism! Are the peace talks working? Did they ever work?

    Mark my words, there are going to many more attacks in the future, disrupting Indian business and economy...killing innocent civilians...is that anything short of a war?

    If India leaders don't take any concrete steps to put a lid on this, they are the greatest fools on this planet.




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  • Legal
    08-08 02:22 PM
    1.Losing all your friends

    Man comes home, finds his wife with his friend in bed.
    He shoots his friend and kills him.
    Wife says "If you behave like this, you will lose ALL your friends."

    2. Brother wanted

    A small boy wrote to Santa Claus,"send me a brother"....
    Santa wrote back, "SEND ME YOUR MOTHER"....

    3. Meaning of WIFE

    Husband asks, "Do you know the meaning of WIFE? It means 'Without Information Fighting Everytime'!"
    Wife replies, "No, it means 'With Idiot For Ever'!!!"

    4. Importance of a period

    Teacher: "Do you know the importance of a period?"
    Kid: "Yeah, once my sister said she has missed one, my mom fainted, dad got a heart attack & our driver ran away."



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  • xyzgc
    12-20 03:32 PM
    It is possible that India may be loser for some extent in short time. But in case of war India will come out winner if India can win decesively similar to Bangladesh war. The parliment attack or Mumbai attack deserves some military action if India is able to destroy some of Terrorist camps. But by the time India preparing for attack the terrorists will move away from their camps and success rate depends on accuracy of timing and intelligence.

    Actually for the past 20 years Terrorists(and Pakistan) lost battle as they acheived nothing by killing innocents. India became superior and biggest development in last 100 years.That is the main reason for changing tactis. Terrorists supported indirectly by Pak ISI or army tried commando attack. But still Terrorists lost battle as India somehow got some sympathy from USA and other Western Countries. I would tell Pak got frustrated as Terrorists got tired. That is the reason Pak army became reckless and indulging in Mumbai Like attacks. Everything including Kargil Pak got failure. As usual Pakistan media is patriotic to their country and they wrote one side analysis. But their media well aware that Geography of India will be huge advantage to India

    Eventually India has to try to attack Pak with international force(Similar to 9/11) if there will be another major Terrorist attack. I sincerely hope and pray God no such attacks will happen in future.

    My feelings are the same. Terrorism is leading Pakistan to destruction and Zardari knows its not working.
    Initially, Paki funded the proxy wars and now the beasts are out of control.

    India is one smug, complacent giant -terorism is not going to make a dent.
    Most of the indians are indifferent and not afraid of going about their lives.
    In Mumbai, the need for survival is intense, you can't stop people from living their daily lives.

    This whole affair has gotten so much international publicity, its blown up in the face of these Pakis.
    Muslims everywhere are under a lens eye - airports, buses, trains, any public transportation people are immediately suspicious. Its creating an embarassing situation for good muslims all over the world.

    Unfortunately, these good muslims are handful, if you look at Pakistani newspapers some of their intellectual journalists sincerely condemn all of this but the readers hold a diametrically opposite view!
    Fortunately, this will educate the readers, slowly but surely. At least it will make them introspect and retrospect.

    The Bombay mullahs refused to bury the terrorists - they don't want a round of riot, they know they will be butchered and nothing good will come out of it.

    Terrorism is not working man!




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  • logiclife
    07-10 01:33 AM
    According to Lou Dobbs, all the problems faced by America today are purely a creation of immigration and immigrants.

    The global warming, Hurrican Katrina, Rising gas prices, inflation, rising interest rates, slowing economy, deficits...everything is something that is purely a product of immigrants.

    According to him had it not been for immigrants, everyone would have 2-3 mansions to live in, 10-20 high paying job offers, 4-5 luxury european cars. But immigrants took all that away by stealing the jobs of Americans. If the immigrants had not been sucking out the welfare from this country, the social security trust fund and the US treasury would be overflowing with money.

    Goddammit these immigrants who stole the jobs of thousands of hard working lettuce pickers and meat packers and farm workers, who, had it not been for these job-stealing, flag waving, non-english speaking, country invading, sovereignty ruining, wage-depressing immigrant intrudor-invader-thief would have been millionaires by now.

    When will the politicians listen to Lou Dobbs who is the only smart person left in the United States now?



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  • Macaca
    12-29 07:13 PM
    Rights activist's life term sparks protests across India (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/28/AR2010122802579.html) By Emily Wax | Washington Post

    Street protests spread across India this week after a court handed down a life sentence to a prominent activist and physician who has long drawn attention to the country's growing economic inequalities.

    In a case that has prompted denunciations by international human rights groups and scholars, prosecutors said Binayak Sen, 60, had aided Maoist rebels in rural India, visiting Maoist leaders in jail and opening a bank account for a Maoist, charges that Sen denies. Human rights activists allege that police planted evidence and manufactured testimonies, and Indian judges have criticized the Dec. 24 judgment.

    Soli Sorabjee, a former attorney general, called the ruling "shocking."

    "Binayak Sen has a fine record," he said. "The evidence against him seems flimsy. The judge has misapplied the section. And in any case, the sentence is atrocious, savage."

    Sen, a pediatrician, has worked for decades to help people displaced by violence and government land seizures in India's mineral-rich regions. Despite the country's booming economy, hundreds of millions of Indians remain mired in poverty - a stubborn inequality that has helped fuel a deadly Maoist insurgency in as many as 20 of India's 28 states.

    The ragtag Maoist rebels, called Naxalites after Naxalbari, a village in West Bengal state where the movement was born in 1967, seek to gain power through armed struggle. They claim to fight for the poor and India's marginalized tribal groups but have also been accused of widespread atrocities. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has called the Naxal movement the "biggest single threat to India's internal security."

    Sen, who was arrested in 2007 and was not granted bail for two years, says he was targeted solely because he was a vocal critic of the government's use of armed groups to push villagers out of mineral-rich forest areas. His sentencing comes as major economies, including the United States and China, are seeking access to India's growing markets - a sign of the country's emergence as an economic superpower.

    "Anyone in India who dissents or questions the superpower script is ostracized," said Kavita Srivastava, national secretary of the People's Union for Civil Liberties, of which Sen is a vice president. "Sen's arrest is happening because this government is extremely anti-poor. Our much-praised 9 percent growth is coming at the cost of displacing millions of people with land that is being given away for mining and corporate development."

    Sen's difficulties with Indian authorities have drawn global attention before. In 2008, an effort led by 22 Nobel laureates failed to secure Sen's release on bail so he could travel to Washington to receive the prestigious Jonathan Mann Award for his efforts to reduce the infant mortality rate and deaths from diarrhea.

    This time, protests erupted after a court in the eastern state of Chhattisgarh convicted Sen on two counts of sedition and conspiracy, sentencing him to life imprisonment. He was found not guilty of a third charge of waging war against the state, a crime punishable by death.

    A growing number of Indian intellectuals and human rights activists have spoken out on his behalf this week.

    "Binayak Sen has never fired a gun. He probably does not know how to hold one," historian Ramachandra Guha wrote in the Hindustan Times. "He has explicitly condemned Maoist violence, and even said of the armed revolutionaries that theirs is an invalid and unsustainable movement. His conviction will and should be challenged."

    Sen's wife, also a doctor, said in an interview that she is launching an international campaign to do just that.

    "He is a person who has worked for the poor of the country for 30 years," Ilina Sen said. "If that person is found guilty of sedition activities when gangsters and scamsters are walking free, well, that's a disgrace to our democracy."


    Nobel Laureates Unable to Win Release of Doctor (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/05/29/AR2008052903578.html?sid=ST2010122803216) By Nora Boustany | Washington Post




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  • Marphad
    12-18 01:45 PM
    Sign of very rare good pakistani journalism:

    http://www.dawn.net/wps/wcm/connect/Dawn%20Content%20Library/dawn/news/pakistan/dont-let-this-sickness-spread-any-further--qs

    Worth reading.



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  • gc_on_demand
    09-26 12:41 PM
    My friends also live in the UK. I have a few friends and relatives who work in the health care system. UK health case is pretty bad. The situation is similar to Govt. hospitals in India. You don't have to pay, but you have to wait a lot to see the doctor and to receive care.

    My boss was canadian and he told me same story for canada. I think Health care is same where British ruled in past.. LOL !!




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  • Refugee_New
    04-05 11:25 PM
    I

    You will pay for yard work (unless you are a do-it-yourself-er), and maintenance, and through the nose for utilities because a big house costs big to heat and cool. (Summers are OK, but desis want their houses warm enough in the winter for a lungi or veshti:))

    Total potential loss: $250,000!!!

    this decade.

    Excellent analysis Jung.lee

    Summers are OK, but desis want their houses warm enough in the winter for a lungi or veshti

    I couldn't control my laughter. You have a good sense of humor too



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  • akred
    04-09 12:58 PM
    I think the universities are out of control and need to be fixed too. All these people with MS and PHd's enroll in their courses with the full intention of staying on after completing their courses.

    We should ask that the DOS start randomly denying F1 applications based on a ratio that is calculated by reviewing immigrant applications for the past 5 years.




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  • eb3India
    04-06 08:39 PM
    you need to touch the bottom of barrel to go on another direction, this will be the bottom of the barrel I suppose

    these protectionist will realize as many H1B dependent companies virtual outsource all there jobs

    well in all seriousness I don't think this bill will be passed in senate,



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  • NKR
    03-28 04:48 PM
    how is owning a house a simple pleasure ?? it is a complex pleasure when yr residential status itself is not guranteed.
    you can give more pleasure to yr family when you rent.

    the bubble that we saw and are seeing is once in a life time event - it will never happen in USA for a long long time (in most places). it will happen more in places like bombay (2 bubbles in last 2 decade).

    you just have to read financial websites to see the enormity of the problem. some are super worst scenarios and some are bad scenarios ..so I guess most likely outcome is somewhere in between(in terms of recession ) and RE market -- i.e. drop of 10 to 25 %. for 300K house that would be 30 thousand minimum.
    when u rent it gives you tons of mobility ..which people don't understand (especially house wives). being able to rent near my job and again move when my company sends me somewhere (or other similar situations) ..that std of living - I can never get by owning a million dollar house. and renting is not throwing money esp in these times (say $250 is prop tax, 200 extra due to commutes / yardwork / utilities, 200 more in HOA, insurance etc + maintenance etc etc)
    when you add couple $100 to the above you get a place to rent --without worrying much as to what yr kids draw on the walls. plus if u invest the diff in diversified funds ..you would get more peace of mind.
    In the end though it depends on personal situation ... but rushing to buy now on EAD is bad idea ..it is never good idea to catch a falling knife.
    ofcourse if you have tons and tons of money and don't mind taking a loss then sure ..Buy. not just here maybe buy another house in India / Bahamas etc ...

    Let me just ask you one question. Assume that the house prices start to rise again, everything comes back to normal and it is the right time to buy a house. Would you then buy a house if you still do not have a GC and you are on EAD.




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  • hiralal
    06-08 09:34 PM
    There you go - "inflation"! This is another reason why investing in a house makes so much sense (iff your gc/job etc are sorted out).

    Let's say you buy a house today for $300,000, and you're paying $2,000 towards your monthly mortgage. Even if you don't build too much equity on it because of the falling real estate, you will STILL come out better because inflation will make sure that your monthly payments of $2,000 in 2019 will really become $1,500 in today's money.

    But if you continue to rent, you will pay let's say $2,000 today in rent, and 10 years from now you'll be paying $2,500, and you don't have a home to call your own!!!

    During times of inflation, commodities, home, etc are the winners. you are partly correct in my view ....but to buy when prices are falling is a sure shot loser ...
    even if prices are stable or lower than the rate of inflation ..you will be losing money on the cost of the house ( 300K + for many homebuyers ..since you pay interest on the cost of the house)..for home buying to be a good investment, it needs to appreciate more than the rate of inflation (that seems years away from now)

    for e.g the person above who put in almost 80K in down payment ..
    1) if that downpayment was invested in better way ..then he could easily get 10% returns (u need to do some homework though) ...that means around 600 - 700 per month.
    so his effective rent is around 1200 per month.
    2) 5 years from now, rent may still be the same (or lower) ... it depends a lot on supply and demand on rental units too
    in majority of cases, we end up buying a house further away from our work ..that means additional 300 - 400 in gas and vehicle wear/tear per month.
    add property taxes, HOA fees, extra utilities, mntc, realtor fees, termite, lawn maintenance, long term prospects of USA, immobility (additional 800 - 1500 dollars) etc etc and you can easily say that home buying / investment in real estate is not a good bet (in USA atleast).
    if you are on temporary status - then add extra $200 - 300 risk premium per month as invisible risk cost (for risks plus extra headaches )
    so home buying should be more of lifestyle choice and not an investment point of view (in countries like India, singapore it is different since demand will always be strong for a long long time).



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  • HawaldarNaik
    09-27 07:50 PM
    Any inputs on the Nov Visa Bullietin ? Will the dates move forward substantially ?




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  • Macaca
    12-23 09:42 PM
    Congress Cool on Tech Issues in 2007 (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/12/23/AR2007122301761.html) Patent reform, security, Internet access and other topics are expected to gain a higher profile next session PC World, Dec 23, 2007

    No one is calling 2007 a banner year for the technology industry in the U.S. Congress.

    Congress passed a handful of bills on many tech vendor and trade group wish lists, but in several cases, they represented partial victories.

    "This Congress so far has a record of neglect on technology issues," said Representative Bob Goodlatte, a Virginia Republican, whose party lost the majority in Congress in the November 2006 elections.

    Goodlatte isn't an impartial observer, but members of the tech community also acknowledge that Congress has been slow to act on tech issues this year. Still, not everyone was expecting great things from a Congress that had to reorganize after the change in party control.

    It's too early to judge this session of Congress, which continues through 2008, said Kevin Richards, federal government relations manager at cybersecurity vendor Symantec. "I think we have a lot of interest [from lawmakers], and this has the potential to be a tech-friendly Congress," Richards said.

    Members of the tech community point to some success in Congress this year:

    Congress passed the America Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education, and Science Act, which became law in August. TheAmerica Competes Actallocated US$43.3 billion for research and math- and science-education programs.

    Congress approved a free-trade agreement with Peru in December, the only such agreement approved this year. Some labor and environmental groups opposed some free-trade agreements, but the pacts are "imperative" for tech vendors, said Sage Chandler, senior director of international trade for the Consumer Electronics Association.

    The CEA, which launched a campaign against "protectionism" in October, said every trade agreement is important to its members. Upcoming free-trade agreements coming before Congress include Columbia, Panama and South Korea. A handful of CEA members are already doing business in Peru or would like to and between 2000 and 2006 U.S. consumer-electronics exports to Peru increased by 12 percent, Chandler said.

    "Without the ability to sell into foreign markets and get components from foreign markets, our companies aren't going to be able to employ Americans," she said.

    Some successes the tech community can point to, however, were partial victories:

    Congress, in late October, passed a seven-year extension to a moratorium on access taxes and other taxes unique to the Internet. But many tech groups and lawmakers had pushed for a permanent tax ban, arguing that it was needed to foster Internet and broadband growth.

    Opponents of a permanent ban successfully argued that it would remove a check on Internet service providers attempting to include other services, such as VoIP (voice over Internet Protocol), in the tax ban. In addition, some lawmakers argued that a permanent ban could cripple the ability to pay for services.

    But some lawmakers argued Congress should've gone farther. The House of Representatives, which in the past has approved permanent extensions, this year passed a four-year extension and "had to have the Senate show them the way to a better seven-year extension," Goodlatte said. The "ultimate goal" should be a permanent tax moratorium, he said.

    The Senate in December passed a one-year extension to a research and development tax credit for U.S. companies. TheTemporary Tax Relief Act, which the House approved Nov. 9, extends the tax credit, which covers 20 percent of qualified R&D spending. But many tech groups have called on Congress to permanently extend the R&D tax credit, which has been extended a dozen times since 1981.

    Supporters of an expanded tax credit argue that the U.S. has fallen behind other nations in its R&D support. Once the most generous with R&D tax breaks, the U.S. by 2004 fell to 17th out of the 30 nations of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

    But the tax break comes with a price tag of about $7 billion a year, and Congress has been reluctant to extend the program long term. Some government watchdog groups have called the R&D tax credit corporate welfare.

    Some tech groups have said the R&D tax credit helps keep high-paying tech jobs in the U.S. And companies have a hard time mapping out their R&D when the credit keeps expiring, said Symantec's Richards. "The on-again, off-again nature of the credit makes it impossible for companies to do the long-term planning that's needed," he said.

    In many other areas, Congress failed to act on legislation many tech groups called for:

    Patent reform: Many large tech companies said their top priority was for Congress to pass a wide-ranging patent reform bill that would make it more difficult for patent holders to sue and collect massive infringement awards. The House of Representatives in September passed thePatent Reform Act, which would allow courts to limit patent damage awards if a patented invention is a small piece of a larger product. Among other things, the bill would also allow a new way to challenge patents within one year after they've been granted.

    Supporters of the bill, including Microsoft and IBM, argued that it's too easy for patent holders who have no intent of marketing an invention to sue large companies and collect multimillion-dollar damages when a small piece of a technology product is found to infringe. "There are people who now just hold patents to sue and not to innovate," said Symatec's Richards.

    Another important piece of the bill would limit where patent holders could file lawsuits, Richards said. Many patent holders file lawsuits in the patent-friendly U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, even though neither the patent holder or the accused infringer is located there.

    Opponents, including pharmaceutical companies, some small technology vendors and inventors, have successfully stalled the bill in the Senate. They say the bill severely weakens the power of patents.

    Senate leaders say they will tackle the bill again in January. Opponents will continue to pressure lawmakers, said Ronald Riley, president of the Professional Inventors Alliance, which has enlisted the support of some labor unions.

    Opponents have talked about finding candidates to run against lawmakers who support the bill, Riley said. "We will have an all-out onslaught on the legislation," Riley said. "We think we will have to make an example of some legislators."

    H-1B visas: Another top priority of many tech vendors has been an expansion of the H-1B visa program for skilled foreign workers. The current yearly cap is 65,000 visas, with exceptions for an additional 20,000 graduate students, but in recent years, the cap has been filled before the year begins.

    Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates testified before a Senate committee in March, saying the U.S. should not shut out talented workers. "We have to welcome the great minds of this world, not drive them out of this country," Gates said. "These employees are vital to American competitiveness."

    But U.S. tech worker groups such as the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers-USA (IEEE-USA) have opposed a higher H-1B cap, arguing that companies use the program to hire foreign workers for less money than unemployed U.S. workers would receive. An H-1B increase to 115,000 was part of a comprehensive immigration bill in the Senate, but that bill stalled over a contentious debate about illegal immigration.

    Data breaches: A handful of data breach notification and cybercrime bills stalled as Congress focused on other issues. The House approved two antispyware bills, one that created penalties of up to five years in prison for some spyware-like behavior. But the Senate didn't act on the bills, in part because there are concerns that the second spyware bill would preempt tougher state laws.

    Net neutrality: Many consumer groups and Internet-based companies continued to call on Congress to pass a net neutrality law, which would prohibit broadband providers from blocking or slowing competitors' Web content. However, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission has included some net neutrality rules in an upcoming spectrum auction, and both Verizon Wireless and AT&T have recently pledged to allow outside content and devices on their mobile-phone networks.

    Congress has also examined tougher penalties for copyright infringement, but hasn't moved legislation forward. With the change in party control, some things have been delayed, and "that was fine with us," said Art Brodsky, spokesman for Public Knowledge, a consumer-rights group that has opposed tougher copyright penalties.

    Some observers expect Congress to be more active on tech issues in 2008. It will be an election year, and it will be hard for controversial legislation to move forward, but many tech issues aren't partisan, Goodlatte said.

    Passing some tech-related legislation would show some progress, he said. "I would think that the Democratic leadership, in the miserable lack of success they've had in passing legislation this year, would be looking for a new approach in the new year," he said.




    hairstyles ART HOTEL LOGO is cool with hotel logo. Member#39;s Privileges at Four
  • Member#39;s Privileges at Four


  • Macaca
    05-11 05:34 PM
    Catching Scent of Revolution, China Moves to Snip Jasmine (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/11/world/asia/11jasmine.html) By ANDREW JACOBS and JONATHAN ANSFIELD | New York Times

    Do not be lulled by its intoxicating fragrance or the dainty, starlike blossoms whose whiteness suggests innocence and purity. Jasmine, a stalwart of Chinese tea and the subject of a celebrated folk song often heard while on hold with provincial bureaucrats, is not what it seems.

    Since Tunisian revolutionaries this year anointed their successful revolt against the country�s dictatorial president the �Jasmine Revolution,� this flowering cousin of the olive tree has been branded a nefarious change-agent by the skittish men who keep the Chinese Communist Party in power.

    Beginning in February, when anonymous calls for a Chinese �Jasmine Revolution� began circulating on the Internet, the Chinese characters for jasmine have been intermittently blocked in text messages while videos of President Hu Jintao singing �Mo Li Hua,� a Qing dynasty paean to the flower, have been plucked from the Web. Local officials, fearful of the flower�s destabilizing potency, canceled this summer�s China International Jasmine Cultural Festival, said Wu Guangyan, manager of the Guangxi Jasmine Development and Investment Company.

    Even if Chinese cities have been free from any whiff of revolutionary turmoil, the war on jasmine has not been without casualties, most notably the ever-expanding list of democracy advocates, bloggers and other would-be troublemakers who have been pre-emptively detained by public security agents. They include the artist provocateur Ai Weiwei, who remains in police custody after being seized at Beijing�s international airport last month.

    Less well known are the tribulations endured by the tawny-skinned men and women who grow ornamental jasmine here in Daxing, a district on the rural fringe of the capital. They say prices have collapsed since March, when the police issued an open-ended jasmine ban at a number of retail and wholesale flower markets around Beijing.

    Zhen Weizhong, 47, who tends 2,000 jasmine plants on about an acre of rented land here, said the knee-high potted variety was wholesaling at about 75 cents, one-third last year�s price. �Even if I could sell them, I would lose money on every plant,� he said, glancing forlornly at a mound of unsold bushes whose blossoms were beginning to fade. Asked if he knew about the so-called Jasmine Revolution and whether it had played a role in collapsing demand, Mr. Zhen shrugged. �I don�t know anything about politics,� he said. �I don�t have time to watch television.�

    Much like the initial calls on the Internet for protesters to �stroll silently holding a jasmine flower,� the floral ban is shrouded in some mystery. The Beijing Public Security Bureau declined to answer questions about jasmine. But a number of cut flower and live-plant business owners said they had been either visited by the police in early March or given directives indicating that it had become contraband.

    Several of those who run stalls in one large plant outlet, the Sunhe Beidong flower market, said the local police had called vendors to a meeting and forced them to sign pledges to not carry jasmine; one said she had been instructed to report to the authorities those even seeking to purchase jasmine and to jot down their license plate numbers. (She said she had yet to detect any subversives seeking to buy jasmine at her stall.)

    Although some vendors were given vague explanations for the jasmine freeze � that the plant was �symbolic� of those people who wanted to sow rebellion � most people involved in the flower trade have been largely left in the dark about why they should behave with such vigilance, and some professed ignorance of the ban altogether. Thanks to a censored Internet, most Chinese have never heard of the protest calls in China, nor are they aware of the ensuing crackdown.

    In the absence of concrete information, fantastic rumors have taken root. One wholesale flower vendor at the Jiuzhou Flower and Plant Trading Center in southern Beijing said he heard the ban had something to do with radiation contamination from Japan. A young woman hawking floral bouquets at Laitai, a large flower market near the United States Embassy, said she was told jasmine blossoms contained some unspecified poison that was killing people. �Perhaps you�d like some white roses instead?� she asked hopefully.

    Wu Chuanzhen, 53, a farmer who tends eight greenhouses of jasmine on the outskirts of the city, said other growers had insisted that adherents of Falun Gong, the banned spiritual movement deemed an �evil cult� by the authorities, might use the flowers in their bid to overthrow the governing Communist Party. �I heard jasmine is the code word for the revolution,� she said. Her laughter suggested she thought such concerns were absurd.

    Many sellers, however, were less than eager to discuss jasmine with a foreigner, particularly at the Sunhe Beidong market, where a policeman could be seen last month nosing around the bouquets. Most quickly steered the conversation to more promising topics. �You don�t want to buy jasmine. It�s just not trendy this year,� said one clerk at the Laitai market, pointing to pots of lavender and rosemary.

    As is often the case in China, controls have a tendency to wilt in the face of mercantile pressures. After two months with little sign of jasmine at the markets, a few vanloads of the plants, their branches thick with blossoms, began to show up at wholesale centers last week. They were priced so low, the buyers could not resist. One retailer, who asked that only her surname, Cui, be printed, acknowledged that the original order had not been officially lifted but that the authorities had yet to interfere.

    Another vendor waved away talk of revolution and broke into a rendition of �Mo Li Hua,� a version of which was played each time medals were presented during the 2008 Olympics in Beijing:

    A beautiful jasmine flower,

    A beautiful jasmine flower,

    Perfumed blossoms fill the branch,

    Fragrant and white for everyone�s delight.

    Let me come and pick a blossom

    To give to someone,

    Jasmine flower, oh jasmine flower.



    US lambasts Chinese repression of dissidents as 'trying to stop history' (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/us-lambasts-chinese-repression-of-dissidents-as-trying-to-stop-history-2282122.html) By Clifford Coonan | Independent
    Chinese Crackdown on Domestic Critics Extends to Writer Barred From Traveling (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/10/world/asia/10writer.html) By KEITH BRADSHER | New York Times
    A Cardinal's Warning on China (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704132204576285221267394028.html) By MARY KISSEL | Wall Street Journal
    China: A sharper focus (http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/849f75dc-7b36-11e0-9b06-00144feabdc0.html#axzz1M2hLbDiL) By Jamil Anderlini and Kathrin Hille | Financial Times
    Fire and Ice
    Ai Weiwei�s cutting edge art, blogging, and sacrifice on behalf of freedom in China. (http://www.tnr.com/article/the-picture/88115/ai-weiwei-china-artist-arrested-moma-exhibit)
    By Jed Perl | The New Republic
    The Great Firewall of China (http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/may/10/the-great-firewall-of-china/) The Washington Times Editorial
    Anish Kapoor Dedicates Art Work to Ai Weiwei (http://blogs.wsj.com/indiarealtime/2011/05/11/anish-kapoor-dedicates-art-work-to-ai-weiwei/) By Margherita Stancati and Josh Chin | IndiaRealTime
    A Tale of Nanjing Atrocities That Spares No Brutal Detail (http://movies.nytimes.com/2011/05/11/movies/city-of-life-and-death-from-lu-chuan-review.html) By MANOHLA DARGIS | New York Times




    jonty_11
    07-14 02:33 PM
    and to prevent such chasms from forming and getting deeper...we all need to look to IV core for guidance and follow only their Action Items. It is critical or else we will find ourselves with our foot in the mouth.




    sanju
    04-08 07:17 AM
    Good post, I would like to add that:

    This is an interesting bill and I feel it'll pass. There are lot of gotcha's but there are some good things. I'm glad to see H1-B rights and whistleblower sections. This was way past due. Really, this is more of a culmination of those few employers who have tried to exploit the system / employees.
    The summary document says that Whistleblower protection does not protect immigration status. So the current language of "Whistleblower protection" has NOT much new to offer because Whistleblower protection is already part of the federal law (outside of immigration act). Here is some info:

    http://www.dol.gov/compliance/guide/whistle.htm
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whistleblower



    key points to ponder:

    - Finally IRS and USICS have come together. !! .. thats a big blow to the body shoppers ( may be a good thing)

    There is already a requirement in the Tax law to send the datab/W-2 of each employee (including the employees on H1) to IRS. So much so that if a company you worked for last year has closed down, you could go to the local IRS office to get your W-2 (from IRS).


    -> 50 employees cant have more than 50% H1B's. I think this will basicaly create many smaller consulting companies nothing else. This I don't like .. could be bad for genuine businesses.

    To get around 50% requirements, as the greenguru mentioned, the employers could bend around the system by having companies with employee size < 50. So it will be an inconvenience for them, but there are ways and means to get around. The problem will be faced by people already here waiting for green cards. If your employer has more than 50% on H1, they will have to file H1 from the sister company and the new law will be applicable to the new H1. So the people already here on H1 will suffer the most.


    I hope it doesnt, without any amendments. Maybe a friendlier bill with strict H1-B rights would be nice.
    Well said!! This bill is not friendly and a better bill, which is not imposing unnecessary restrictions and has worker protection provisions for all H1 employees will be better in making the H1 process equitable and workable.



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