Sunday, July 10, 2011

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  • desi3933
    08-05 11:22 AM
    Nobody cares what qualifications u have. EB1, EB2 and EB3 is what matters at the end of the day.

    This letter is utter nonsense. Admins, Moderators...pls stop this nuisance as this will cause internal fighting and end up in nobody receiving any benefits in the near future. If USCIS responds +vely to that letter, then do u think EB2s will keep quiet??? This will cause chaos and thus nobody will get anything out of it. Why is this thread still alive. Pani, the starter of this thread shud be banned for initiating this effort. Shud anything -ve happen to EB2s as an outcome of this, I'm gonna hunt that fellow and sue him for ruining my life.

    Would you mind explaining a bit?





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  • yabadaba
    08-11 01:43 PM
    http://www.flcdatacenter.com/CaseH1B.aspx

    you will have to type in cable news in the employer name box

    and change the state to Georgia





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  • Macaca
    05-18 05:29 PM
    Why Ai Weiwei's case matters for the future of China on the world stage (http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/peterfoster/100088312/why-ai-weiweis-case-matters-for-the-future-of-china-on-the-world-stage/) By Peter Foster | Telegraph

    There’s a perception in Britain that human rights issues in China are really just a hobby-horse of the liberal left, an issue that only bothers people who pay an annual subscription to Amnesty International.

    That’s a big mistake, because human rights – or more broadly, political reforms and good governance – are the fundamental key to China emerging this century as a developed and stable nation. Everyone has an interest in making that happen.

    A recent report from France’s INSEAD business school picked up by the Wall Street Journal traces the clear correlation between good governance (rule of law, property rights etc) and prosperity.

    Economically oligarchies and authoritarian states stall when they hit per-capital income levels of about USD$15,000 a per head. China is predicted to reach USD$8,300 this year, which means the time when these issues are starting to press is fast approaching.

    “Without reform, growth is not sustainable,” says Antonio Fatas, an economist at INSEAD and co-author of the study, “This has clear implications for China and other countries.”

    That’s why Jim O’Neill of Goldman Sachs, on a visit to China last week, said that his biggest worry for China was not near-term inflation, or asset bubbles or bad debts but the Communist Party’s long-term ability to adapt politically to a new world.

    Asked about risks to the ongoing China story, Mr O’Neill (the man who coined the BRICs acronym) cited inflation and rising protectionism in Washington as “small” risks, before sounding his note of real caution.

    “The third thing [risk to China], that’s much longer term; as Chinese people get wealthier, the Chinese central party machine has to adapt more and more to keep in synch with what Chinese people want, and that might be a real challenge,” he warned.

    That’s why Ai Weiwei’s case matters – not just as an individual human being (though he does) but also because his case is symptomatic of the failure of China’s ruling Communist Party to create credible political institutions in which the rest of the world can have faith.

    As Markus Loning, Germany’s human rights commissioner, said this week in Beijing. “It is not about a single case, but the rule of law. If we want to have development, it is important for people to claim that they are protected [by the law].”


    The world must speak up over the detention of Ai Weiwei (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/borisjohnson/8515705/The-world-must-speak-up-over-the-detention-of-Ai-Weiwei.html) By Boris Johnson | Telegraph


    Australia's multilateralism fetish (http://www.lowyinterpreter.org/post/2011/05/18/Multilateralism-Time-to-rip-off-the-band-aid.aspx) By Michael Wesley | The Interpreter
    Will violence in Mexico impact immigrant pool in US? (http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Americas/Latin-America-Monitor/2011/0517/Will-violence-in-Mexico-impact-immigrant-pool-in-US) By Sara Miller Llana | The Christian Science Monitor
    Let us deport the bad guys
    Critics are wrong: The Secure Communities program works. (http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-baca-immigration-20110517,0,7647155.story)
    By Lee Baca | Los Angeles Times
    Hispanic Growth Shapes 2012 Race (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704281504576327200008543470.html) By GERALD F. SEIB | Wall Street Journal
    E-2 visa helps many non-U.S. citizens start small firms (http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-smallbiz-visa-20110516,0,7260673.story) By Cyndia Zwahlen | Los Angeles Times





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  • unitednations
    03-25 02:54 PM
    I heard from the grapevine that UNITEDNATIONS will be the next USCIS chief - so folks better behave with him or he wil report ya all :D :D :D :D

    My first order is greencards for everyone then next time people will see me would be at my funeral after the anti immigrants knocked me and obama off.:D



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  • pitha
    04-08 10:04 PM
    Could not agree with you more on this. They have systematically targeted people of particular races. This is nothing but high tech lynching. If these people are against H1 just come out a say that. But these hypocrites don�t have the balls to say that so they are targeting a particular race.

    Imagine telling an Indian or Chinese doctor to treat only Indian and Chinese patients and not anybody else. That�s what this law is essentially doing to technology consultants. You can only work within the company but cannot do consulting. But if you are an American citizen you can do consulting, body shopping etc but you cannot do that with H1!!!!.

    I didn�t have much of an opinion regarding a path to citizenship to illegals, I could not understand why Kennedy was spoiling the whole CIR by stressing on path to citizenship for illegals. Now I understand exactly why Kennedy and some others stress about path to citizenship for illegals. They don�t want the illegals to go through these same gotchas that they are trying to put us h1's through. Kennedy knows that unless the illegals are given a path to citizenship they will be constantly exploited like we are.

    The people who are sponsoring this law are xenophobes masquerading as h1 reformers. Of all the groups who claim they are trying to reform h1 you can easily weed out the pretenders and the real ones. The only real one is IEEE-USA They know H1b is necessary but don�t agree with some exploitation going on with the system. So the IEEE-USA made some of these proposals
    1. Give green cards to US educated students directly instead of H1
    2. Delink H1 from employers which will make them more mobile and not subjected to exploitation by employers.

    Now IEEE-USA was truly interested in reforming H1 that why they made the above proposals. Now these xenophobes who proposed this draconian law did not include any of these proposals, why? Because there objective is not to reform H1 but to throw us out and kill h1 based on an excuse called reforming h1. If they were really interested in reforming h1 they would have included the above proposals in the bill.

    This bill will pass one way or the other. The only solution for us would be 485 without priority date. But do we have the will and more importantly the resources to pull that off. Other than the personal effort of the core team and 200 odd contributing members who do we have to count on. People atleast now contribute, even before we could take one step forward we have been pushed 2 steps backward. As logiclife has said its no longer just about green card our very own existence is being eliminated. Please contribute atleast now for your own good.



    So all said and done, we may now go down based on a racially motivated bill. I am not sure what it takes to educate the law makers, I would like to see the senior personnel at IV and more analysts to look into what can be done on this bill.





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  • willwin
    07-13 04:05 PM
    Go ahead do it..... send a badly written letter.
    The content of the letter does not read like it was written by a college graduate - at least seek help with writing a professional letter, it sounds very archaic ! Bad expression, poor grammar, poor reasoning, unreadable.

    The letter will fare better if it is at least readable.

    I'm in EB2 but i will continue to help in IV efforts, and contribute $$ when i can for all efforts EB2 or EB3. I understand the pain of EB3 applicants, so do several (most) others.
    Your posts like ".....crying like little babies...." will not help......

    Peace! That letter wasn't the final print; we could change it for better. That was just an initiative. Do not pick on others writing skills. English is after all not the language in which most of us think; we use our mother tongue instead and then do the translation!

    Please help if you can, nobody would deny an helping hand.



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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-05 12:49 PM
    I was recently riding with a friend of mine.
    We were coming to a red light, and he shoots right through it. I ask him, "Why'd you do that?" He tells me this is how his brother drives.

    We come to another red light, and again, he shoots right through it. I ask him, "Why'd you do that?" Again, he tells me this is how his brother drives.

    We come to a green light, and he SLAMS on the brakes. My heart nearly goes into my throat. I shouted at him, "Why'd You Do That?!"

    He replied, "You never know, my brother could be coming the other way."





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  • Macaca
    03-13 09:29 AM
    Fixing Congress's E-Mail Woes (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/03/12/AR2007031201369_2.html)

    Studies have shown that lawmakers often ignore and sometimes do not even receive e-mails ginned up by interest groups. Deluged with thousands of essentially identical electronic messages, congressional offices are constantly trying to make it harder for organizations to blast them out.

    Now Neil Hare, a former vice president of communications at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, has devised a way around the problem. He just started ISupportThisMessage.com, a Web site that solicits citizens' opinions on political and legislative issues and promises to deliver the results -- on paper -- to every lawmaker's office.

    Visitors to the site are invited to "vote" on a variety of issues such as child hunger and presidential candidates. The numbers are tallied and comments compiled for later distribution on Capitol Hill.

    "This is a reaction to the failure of e-mailing," Hare said. "We will issue regular reports with our numbers and, over time, Hill staffers will be able to log on and see the results themselves." He said that lobby groups can buy their own spaces on the site for far less than full-blown grass-roots campaigns.



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  • sundarpn
    07-13 12:05 AM
    Just curious if this is being endorsed by IV?





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  • GCapplicant
    09-26 10:02 AM
    For me Obama and Mccain are equally good candidates. I would prefer Hillary Clinton over both of them.

    McCain is a great guy, but he is with the wrong party. A party that aligns itself with anti-immigrants.

    Now that we don't have much hopes for HR-5882, we should start targeting the CIR right now. Maybe we can talk to the Hispanic and other groups which will have an influence over CIR and have our provisions taken care of.

    It will definitely be easier to tie-up with Hispanic caucus and other groups than anti-immigrants.


    I agree with you - mediating with Caucus is the only option.Legal is nothing infront of them.They are the real majority when compared to our %.

    Even if they bring new restriction over EB category - we have already applied and are in our final stage only.It's only the visa numbers.

    The new rules might be for the new applicants ,maximum they might bring in Stem.There is nothing more they can do for us.More restrictions on us is quite impossible.

    Oct 2009 should be in favor to us all.I have to only pray God.We have to just move on with our life.



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  • unitednations
    03-25 12:35 PM
    Oh, and I think I should elaborate just a little more.

    I am not asking whether the USCIS can or cannot exercise scrutiny on approving 485s where a person, under AC21 provision, switches to a small consulting company.

    Of course they can, the 485 is for a full time job, and whether a job with a small consulting company is of a full time nature or not, is up in the air and they can 'scrutinize' it all they want, if they choose to.

    My question to UN is whether he thinks if they will choose to go after 485 AC21 job switches to small consulting companies like he thinks they will for small consulting company H-1Bs, and not whether they can.

    Thanks again,

    You see on all these ac21 issues we rely on uscis memos. Every one of these memos state pending change to the regulations; we are going to follow the principles of this memo.

    it has been 8 years and they still haven't changed the regulations. Memos can be changed at their whim at any time.

    Currently; uscis position is that if someone ports to another company; they are not supposed to check the ability to pay criteria. However; they left themselvees an out that theey can check the genuineness of the ac21 employer. Becasuse of this last statement; what they have been doing is asking for ac21 employer tax returuns, and quarterly wage reports. If you are already on payroll then size of company doesn't matter. However; if you are not on payrroll and it is a very small company then they can challnge it.

    btw; I am not epecting quota to finish early this year. Many companies/lawyers are very frustrated with h-1b right now. I was talking to education evaluator and he told me that there is litteally no business right now. Companies I know of how filed 70 cases last year are not filing any this year due to a combination of issues (iowa issue, lack of approvals and great demand for tansfers by thos who were laid off or had theirr h-1b's cancelled.

    Right now; newer companies who don't have much experience with h-1b are going into the lions den without knowing there is a lion in there.





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  • puddonhead
    06-05 04:20 PM
    >> Savings on tax deductions/yr: $ 4,050 (30% bracket, $13.5K interest)

    This assumption may not be correct. You can take tax deduction for mortgage only if you forego standard deduction. Assuming it is a 3 people household (Mr., Missus and Master) - you would forego the standard deduction of around 10k. So the marginal tax saving would only be around 1k assuming 30% bracket.

    In case you itemize anyway (small business owners typically have to do this) - then your calculation of $4k in net tax saving is correct.

    My calculation would be:

    Situation Own:
    Your expense is
    item# 4 +
    item# 5
    - Corrected item# 9

    Item #8 is NOT a mitigating factor to your monthly expenses. To earn the quity - you have to make the same amount of cash payment - cash which you could have used in any other form of investment.

    So the total would be
    Own: 13k + 9k - 1k ~ 20-21k.
    Rent: 18k

    I did not take investment return into account. If you do that - then I believe real estate would perform poorly in terms of return/risk when compared with almost any other investment - but all that is speculative anyway and hence better left out of the calculation.


    So - in the example you have given - renting would come out ahead.

    However, in ValidIV's example buying would be superior to renting.



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  • ssa
    06-25 02:17 PM
    Remember the biggest speculation we have had in recent history was in real estate from 2002 to 2007. That's the primary reason we are all in this mess. So if anyone is speculator it's the new homeowner who bought house between 2002 to 2007, definitely not the renter. I for one am very glad I sat out the whole crazy real estate hysteria during the time. I'm not underwater! Those who bought during the peak around 2005/2006 will have to wait a long time before they can even break even.

    Your second point of buying 3-4 homes with 20% down each and building equity on rent is the classic strategy to head into multiple foreclosures at once. This was the exact thinking that got so many real estate speculators in deep whole. Show me a single major city that has good amount of jobs (Bay area/Boston/Seattle) and where the monthly rent covers the monthly mortgage payment+property tax+home insurance. If that were the case there would not have been all these foreclosures, they would just give their houses on rent!

    Finally as for missing on the lowest interest rates, interest rates will generally move in somewhat opposite direction to house prices. That is because when the interest rate is high there will be less buyers which will drive the prices down. So barring lucky few you can only lock in either low interest rate or low house prices. Choice here is clear: you can always re-finance when the interest rates go down next time but you can never re-negotiate your house purchase price so you should always aim for getting a low price rather than low interest rate.

    Owning a home is never a bad idea but paying unreasonable price for it is indeed a bad one. It's like asking if owning a Google stock is bad idea. It sounds like a legitimate question but in reality is an absurd one because it leaves out the most important detail. At what price? Price is everything!

    All you and the renters here are doing is speculating. Speculators, from my experience, always buy and sell at the wrong time because all they do is guess. Even if prices do go lower in 2011, speculators will speculate that it will go down further and continue to hold off then miss their chance. Same problem with now in 2009, you missed the low interest rates and who knows when they will come back down to the 4s again. Personally I hope they do come back, cuz I missed a chance to refi one of my properties. You are not only losing your rent money to a landlord, but you are also losing valuable time that you could've used to knock off your mortgage.

    As for only putting 20% down and people saying that they want to buy their homes outright– they are idiots. You never pay full price or more than 50% for a home, even if you can afford it. Pay the downpayment, then invest the rest of that money elsewhere and build even more from that money. That is called leverage and thats what good smart investors do. They use the system, they leverage their money and NEVER pay full price. If you have $800,000 and want to buy an $800,000 3 family house, u dont use all ur money on it to pay it all in one shot. You buy 3 or 4 of them, paying 20% down then rent it out, use the rent money to pay the mortgage hold and sell after 20-30 years. Use the rest of the money and invest that in a portfolio or start a business. After 30 years all your properties will be paid off by renters like the people here. You can sell them, give them to your kids, whatever. But don't tell me you're not coming out ahead.

    And for the people that are proud to have more than 1 car and paid it all off– a car is not an investment. Unless you buy an antique that you can sell for more than what you paid for, it is not comparable to owning a home. I have a car, it degraded in value the minute i drove it off the lot. Its great for vacations, going around, getting to work whatever. But I am not proud to own a degrading liability even when its been fully paid 5 years after I bought it with no chance of increasing its value.

    I have no problems with renters like you or others in this forum. I make money from you. I don't care if you terminate your lease early because another renter will take your place. All renters do is throw away their money and will never get it back. I will use your rent money to pay my mortgage. But don't try to tell me that owning a home is a bad idea. Owning your own home is NEVER a bad idea and 68% of America agrees. You will ALWAYS need a place to live in.





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  • krishna.ahd
    08-26 09:19 AM
    What men say and what they actually mean . . .

    • "I'M GOING FISHING" Means: "I'm going to drink myself dangerously stupid, and stand by a stream with a stick in my hand, while the fish swim by in complete safety."
    • "YES, DEAR..." Means: Absolutely nothing. It's a conditioned response.
    • "IT WOULD TAKE TOO LONG TO EXPLAIN" Means: "I have no idea how it works."
    • "TAKE A BREAK HONEY, YOU'RE WORKING TOO HARD". Means: "I can't hear the game over the vacuum cleaner."
    • "THAT'S INTERESTING, DEAR." Means: "Are you still talking?"
    • "I WAS JUST THINKING ABOUT YOU, AND GOT YOU THESE ROSES". Means: "The girl selling them on the corner was a real babe."
    • "WHAT DID I DO THIS TIME?" Means: "What did you catch me at?"
    • "I HEARD YOU." Means: "I haven't the foggiest clue what you just said, and am hoping desperately that I can fake it well enough so that you don't spend the next 3 days yelling at me."
    • "YOU KNOW I COULD NEVER LOVE ANYONE ELSE." Means: "I am used to the way you yell at me, and realize it could be worse."
    • "YOU LOOK TERRIFIC." Means: "Please don't try on one more outfit, I'm starving."
    • "WE SHARE THE HOUSEWORK." Means: "I make the messes, she cleans them up."
    Just want to add one more

    "Thats a good question" - Means i have no clue or have no answer for that question.



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  • Macaca
    07-31 05:00 PM
    No Recess For K Street: (http://www.rollcall.com/issues/53_14/vested/19584-1.html) Lobbyists Plan Outreach Efforts In Districts, on Campaign Trail By Kate Ackley, ROLL CALL STAFF

    The countdown to the August recess has entered its final stretch with just one week to go. But for Washington, D.C., lobbying organizations, the steamy month of Congressional downtime means a lot more than slipping out of town to sip pi�a coladas on the beach.

    It's an opportunity to contact Members back home in their districts and to mobilize constituents with issue ads and special events. The break also gives lobbyists a chance to set up along the campaign trail to push their agendas with presidential candidates in ocean-free zones such as Des Moines, Iowa.

    Usual suspects AARP, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America plan to hit the road in August along with some grass-roots newcomers, including ONE, the organization founded by rock star Bono.

    "August is a critical month," said James Fuller, a managing director at Public Strategies Inc., which is working to shape patent legislation for the Coalition for 21st Century Patent Reform. "When Members go home they hear about all these types of issues. Now's the time when they take notice."

    Fuller's coalition plans to organize in-district meetings, letter and e-mail writing campaigns, and efforts to get its allies to be vocal participants at Members' town hall meetings. Fuller said all of this is intended to help lay the groundwork for upcoming action in September on patent reform bills in the House and Senate. Targets of the coalition's August lobbying efforts, he said, include Democratic Sens. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.) and Edward Kennedy (Mass.), among others. "We're going to be very aggressive in August, reaching out to companies in states we know we need," he added.

    Bono's ONE campaign also is planning a major effort in August, said the group's Kimberly Cadena, asking its 2.5 million supporters to speak with their Members when it comes to the farm bill and other items.

    "ONE will kick off the August recess with a grass-roots legislative briefing on the evening of August 2," Cadena said. Over the recess, ONE members, sans Bono, will be lobbying for the Education for All and U.S. Commitment to Global Child Survival bills, she added.

    Divided We Fail - a health care-focused effort sponsored by the AARP, Service Employees International Union and Business Roundtable - plans to hit the Iowa State Fair on Aug. 10 to make sure presidential contenders hear their views.

    And Bill Miller, vice president and political director with the Chamber of Commerce, said his group dispatches lobbyists on the road during every Congressional recess.

    "We decided this year to put an increased focus on doing those visits to Congressional districts and states where lots of our issues are in play and Congressional districts that are also politically in play," Miller said, adding that fundraisers also are a component of the chamber's August outreach to Members.

    Miller's team will focus on restarting the free-trade agenda, the stalled efforts on immigration reform and stymying union efforts in Congress including the card-check bill. "Whether you're a union company or mid-sized, little guy or not, the passage and enactment of something like this would have severe consequences for the United States economy," he said.

    On the other side of the political spectrum, the liberal group Campaign for America's Future is planning a barrage of targeted ads, direct mail and local press events.

    "The Campaign for America's Future plans to take the gloves off this recess to ensure that Americans are clear on who is pushing for change and who is standing in the way," said Toby Chaudhuri, the group's communications director. "The conservative minority has chosen a strategy of blocking legislation at a record pace in the Senate. We're going to expose the obstruction."

    The private equity crowd, which is working to fend off proposals to increase taxes on the industry, is planning to continue making its case during the recess, said Robert Stewart, the Private Equity Council's vice president of public affairs. "It makes much more sense for the country, for the economic growth of the country, not to single out private equity for punitive tax treatment," he said.

    America's Health Insurance Plans - which went on the air last week with ads defending the Medicare Advantage program that is on the chopping block to help pay for the State Children's Health Insurance Program - is planning to run more ads in targeted districts, depending on how this week's SCHIP debate turns out. AHIP will be working closely with seniors who use Medicare Advantage through the Coalition for Medicare Choices, said AHIP spokesman Mohit Ghose.

    "We are going to ensure that every Member of Congress understands what the impending cuts being proposed in the House mean for their constituents," Ghose said. The 400,000 volunteer members of the coalition, he added, "will go to town hall meetings and interact at the district office."

    Also on the health care front, PhRMA plans to fuel up its Partnership for Prescription Assistance bus, which will roll into several Members' districts over August, including those of Reps. James Clyburn (D-S.C.), Gene Green (D-Texas) and Tim Murphy (R-Pa.). The PPA is a pharmaceutical company program that helps pay for medicine for low-income people. PhRMA Senior Vice President Ken Johnson said the bus already has done 13 events but plans to ramp up the tour in August.

    "August is important for us because it's the one time a year when most Members are back home in their districts," he said. "During August, we have the opportunity to hold a significant number of events."





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  • iwantmygreen
    04-15 05:18 PM
    Factors to consider when buying:
    1. Will you have to slog extra to make mortgage payments. If it means you are going to spend less time with your family, then is it really worth it.
    2. Will your spouse start working to help support mortgage payments. Does this imply kids go to daycare. Then probably your kid isnt geting the care a mom can only provide to her child.
    3. Will the stress level increase after buying the house (again worried for making payments, losing jobs). Is it worth it.
    4. Mostly all apartments have open areas where kids can play. They are much bigger then backyards in any house. Even in your backyard you will have to watch your kids when they are outdoors. Same here in the apartment outdooors.
    5. Chances are you will have more savings when you live in an apartment. You can do something really constructive like take you family for vacation, cruise.
    6. Does owning a home prevent you from visiting your home country, relatives etc as you are always tied up to making mortgage payments.

    For people who are really making lots of money & dont care much for it, above statments dont have much significance. Most of us are in the middle class range. So savings do matter to them.


    Let me declare the winners:
    1. Mariner & nojoke are logical & declared winners in this debate
    2. kaiserose & NKR have made some mistakes by buying a costly home & wouldn't admit.

    May God Bless you guys.



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  • Macaca
    12-30 08:20 AM
    2007: Democrats in Control, but Thwarted (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/12/30/AR2007123000447.html) By LAURIE KELLMAN | Associated Press, Dec 30, 2007

    WASHINGTON -- It's a painful irony for Democrats: In the space of a year, the Iraq war that was the source of party's resurgence in Congress became the measure of its impotence.

    By the end of the 2007, a Congress controlled by Democrats for the first time since 1994 had an approval rating of only 25 percent, down from 40 percent last spring. Then the debate over the war split the party and cast shadows over other issues, spawning a series of legislative failures and losing confrontations with President Bush.

    What to do about Iraq has turned into a dissing match so far-reaching and nasty that Congress's accomplishments are seen, even by some who run it, through the lens of their failure to override Bush and start bringing the troops home.

    "There is no question that the war in Iraq has eclipsed much of what we have done," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters. "If you asked me in a phone call, as ardent a Democrat as I am, I would disapprove of Congress as well."

    It's not as if the new Democrat-controlled Congress did nothing during 2007.

    It gave the nation's lowest paid workers their first raise in a decade, raising the minimum wage from $5.15 to $5.85 an hour in July. It will rise to $7.25 an hour in 2009.

    Congress also cut in half the interest rates on federal student loans and boosted annual Pell grants for post high-school education by $260 to $4,310 in July, rising to $5,400 for the 2012-2013 school year. Bush signed the bill after initially threatening to veto it.

    And just before Congress turned out the lights for the year on Dec. 19, Bush signed into law a sweeping new energy policy that requires automakers to achieve an industrywide average fuel efficiency for cars, SUVs and small trucks of 35 miles per gallon by 2020, a 40 percent jump. Some analysts said the new law will render gas guzzlers relics of the past and make farmers rivals of oil companies in producing motor fuels.

    "All of us deserve credit for getting some things done," Bush said in his year-end news conference, insisting that he doesn't keep score.

    But on the eve of an election year with the presidency and control of Congress at stake, many others do.

    In the year's firmest push-back against the Bush administration, Congress for the first time overrode one of Bush's vetoes, on a $23 billion bill for restoring hurricane-ravaged wetlands along the Gulf Coast and other water projects. The president had protested it was filled with unnecessary projects, but 34 Senate Republicans defied him.

    Democrats scored other political victories as well. Most significantly, a Democrat-led investigation revealed a troubled Justice Department and forced Alberto Gonzales, a longtime presidential friend, from the attorney general's office. Democrats also played a big role in selecting his successor, Michael Mukasey.

    But the story of Congress in 2007 is more about what it failed to accomplish during a war that the public opposes and that Democrats had vowed _ but did not _ to end.

    On that, they found themselves repeatedly outmaneuvered, unable to break bill-killing GOP filibusters with 60 votes in a Senate where Democrats held only what effectively is a 51-49 majority.

    Plans to expand health care for 10 million children stalled. And a fragile compromise put together by Bush and liberal Democrats to provide a path to citizenship for millions of immigrants buckled with only lukewarm support from all sides.

    Perhaps the most bitter pill came toward the end of the year. Democrats were forced to acknowledge that the decrease in violence in Iraq might mean that Bush's much-criticized surge buildup of troops was working.

    Simultaneously, they found themselves on the defensive against Republican charges that they squandered time on the war that could have been spent getting agency budgets passed on time. As usual, what has become an annual fix to the tax code to save 20 million families an average $2,000 in extra taxes was put off until the final days before Christmas.

    Predictably, Democrats and Republicans blamed each other.

    Majority Leader Harry Reid called Bush's "stubbornness" and Republicans' filibuster threats "obstruction on steroids."

    Republicans suggested Democrats could have accomplished big reforms on Social Security and immigration _ or even just speedy passage of the federal budget _ had it been in their election-year interests.

    "I just don't think the new majority wanted to do anything significant," said Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

    By most accounts, the window for accomplishing broad new reforms was quickly closing as the nation's political machinery rumbled into position for the 2008 presidential and congressional elections. On the ballot will be all 435 House seats and 35 of the 100 seats in the Senate.

    At stake is a wider Democratic majority, big enough to govern. A cascade of retirements by Republicans in the Senate made that goal achievable. Democrats hoped gain seats in the House, as well.

    So they labored to tout what they had accomplished in the majority. They suggested that what failed this year might pass with more Democrats elected next year.

    Bush has signed into law other initiatives of the Democratic-led Congress, such as $3 billion in funding for Louisiana's Road Home program to rebuild housing stock destroyed by Hurricane Katrina.

    Procedural and institutional reforms became law as well, such as changes in ethics and lobbying rules.

    Behind the scenes, Democrats and their aides debated which fights to pick next year with a lame duck president. Most likely, they said: the children's health care bill.

    Immigration reform, however, appears dead until the new Congress takes its seats in 2009.





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  • lost_angeles
    07-13 03:30 PM
    Last year's flower campaign was very successful. It created positive vibes for us all around. The reason for the campaign's success was it's novelty, non-confrontational approach and it's appeal to the sense of justice of the people that mattered.

    With the EB3-I situation as it is, we definitely need to start a new and similar collective initiative as has been discussed in this thread. It is been generally agreed that the format of our initiative would be a letter, contact, and action based effort.

    Not to be preaching to EB3-I-inans, but most of us are truly in a trance where we refuse the possibility of not getting a Green Card, at least when it is meaningful. To many of us this possibility is such a catastrophic event, that sub consciously we have not even provisioned for it. In the euphoria of EB2-I advancement, we forget that the relief is most likely temporary, and we go back to square one in OCT 2008. I think everybody who is still in immigration process, should take a part in this effort. For those who are already ashore, would be a nice gesture if you too lend a hand. On a personal level, I am glad that I am waking up from my laziness and apathy to do something on my own and not wait on others to do it for me.

    ----------

    I want to use this post to outline a first cut for two things --
    1. Compile a list of points that outlines the general message of what and why of we are doing.
    2. Discuss the action items that accompany our message.

    ----------
    1. Points for general message --

    * We understand that immigration is a privilege and national interests are above our plight.

    * We are highly educated and experienced residents. Most of us have been living in USA for more than past 7-8 years.

    * We are in suspended limbo without knowing the timeline of what the future holds for us.

    * When we started the immigration process, it was with implicit belief in the fairness and transparency of the system. The general labor substitution, paying money for Green cards and other abuses have thwarted this belief. This point should be emphasized.

    * There were and still are lots of loopholes in the system. Till now, the process has glaringly rewarded the law breakers. As long as these distorted incentives remain, the priorities will be skewed for some.

    * We are not here to rob anybody's livelihood. It is a symbiotic relationship. If it is not true and not good for USA, let us know. You cannot let few H1 scams discredit the whole ilk.

    * We are tied to our jobs/positions; creative juices are suppressed; creating a secondary class of indentured labor.

    * We cannot afford to do tech-speak (245, AC-21, EBs, ....) in the message. The message that we are trying to convey should be understood by the layman in 20-30 seconds.

    * We should try to empathize with groups like Numbers-USA. Yes, they too have valid points. If we agree to their points and quote their valid issues, it will take some sting out of their message and work to both our advantage; more to ours.

    * By being in this uncertain state, we cannot decide on big ticket items like buying a house, etc.

    * We request respect and dignity versus treating us like a dumb herd of sheep. Give us more clear cut direction and transparency.


    ---------

    2. Ideas for action item --

    * Similar to flower campaign, we need to find a novel action that accompanies our message.

    * This action item should somehow reflect that it is selfless and for a higher cause, which creates a general feeling of well-being.

    * Some of things I thought of are -- contributing to Salvation Army / Goodwill, sponsoring education for children from low income family in USA, blood donation campaign, etc.

    * Out of this, I think blood donation provides most bang for buck. The idea sounds like too extreme and desperate. It probably is, but it sends a strong signal, also subtleness of if-my-blood-is-good-enough......
    Also other inherent benefits are it does not cost anything and is good for your health. And you can be very discrete about it, if you think of lobbying for your green card is stooping too low.

    * For blood donation or any other option that is decided, attach proof of receipts/certificates along with our letter. Alongwith a national level office (USCIS director?), this should be sent out to all local representatives, news orgs, etc.

    ---------

    This is a long post and I appreciate your patience in going through it. Please post your comments on this post and add any other ideas you deem fit. I think we all should move very fast and try to drum up as much attention as possible. The ultimate goal is to get some kind of direction or relief before the end of this year.


    Thanks.





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  • Desichakit
    08-06 11:01 AM
    I think clearing an exam like IIT-JEE in no way makes a person Superior over others. I my self have cleared IIT-JEE and am EB2 India, but still I see this proposed/planned Law suit to be ill thought off.

    Rolling Flood: I can only say that you can give any logic for this Lawsuit and it can be countered by any other logic why it is incorrect.


    Some body Porting from EB3 to EB2 if it is done sucessfully previoyusly then it is Lawfull.

    Many countries had their Jaichand's who will go to any extent for their own benefit, but society, nations thrive even after that.

    Your comments is very welcome because it gives all of us 1 more reason to be united than divided.

    PS.: When there is flood in Gangaji then it is not revered, only when it is within its banks it is revered and does good for society





    nojoke
    04-06 04:50 AM
    Fide_champ,

    I am also looking for buying house in new jersey and as you mentioned all good places with good schools have hardly any effect from recession and housing down turn. But any way if you have to buy a house for long term then no point in waiting. The only thing bad times do to good places is value doesn't increase like it does in good times. Any suggestions on areas in New Jersey with good school and affordable (I mean something in 350-450k)? I know some very good areas where worst looking house starts at 700k which is out of scope.

    USDream2Dust

    I hope this is not a joke. You have any idea what kind of downturn we will be facing? Why did Fed jump in to bail out Bear Stearns against all the criticism? What they did is considered illegal by many. But still they did it anyway. Because the Government is very afraid of this shaky economy. We were just few steps away from bank runs.
    My friend bought house in Atlanta and within 3 months the builder sold the same model houses for 100k less. We are going to see a 30% to 50% reduction depending on the area.
    People who wanted to convince themselves said it will not happen in california. As things started unfolding, they said it will not happen in Bay area. Then they said it will not happen in San Jose and Santa Clara. Now they are saying not in their block.
    If you still think a good school will protect your house price, go ahead and catch the falling knife. To give you some idea of what people here are thinking -------------
    “Sinclair: ‘But the prices kept going up. At one time, our house was worth over $600,000. In fact, a model just like this they were asking $699,000 — and now things have entirely collapsed.”

    “A similar house down the street is already in foreclosure and the bank is entertaining offers for under $200,000.”

    “The Sinclairs stopped paying their mortgage in October when the payment jumped from $3,000 a month to $4,000. Now they’re basically squatting in their own home, living there for free. Sinclair: ‘We had to start making some hard choices, which included going into foreclosure on our house and kind of starting again.’”

    “Sinclair: ‘We would do it if the equity was there, but in a case where we’re already so behind… Imagine that for five years, say, we’re gonna pay four grand a month and then we’re just gonna be back up at what we bought the house for. We feel like we’re throwing away money.’”

    --------------------------------
    They are just walking away from their house because they see that their house value is going down. This all will feedback and cause further decline in the prices. Don't think that the prices will be back in 5 years. For someone who bought a house in 1989, it took 8 years to 9 years to get back to their purchase price. This time it will be worse.

    Guys, people are talking about Depression and you guys want to buy house in a good school district. These FB(search google what it means), are waiting for some greater fool than themselves to unload their burden. This is why you will be called "greater fool"
    If you want to loose your 200K in 2 years, go ahead. It is your money. Don't tell that you weren't warned, like all these mortgage companies and banks who are now saying - "who would have thought it would get this worse".

    Land is plentiful in california and NJ. There are building restrictions artificially imposed to keep the prices high. But this is past. No realtors are saying "we are not making any more land" these days. I have been following the housing blogs and they are laughing at Indians who are buying here in Bay area. Do some research before spewing the realtor propaganda and don't compare situation in India with US. Sorry for the rant. I am doing this with good intention to save atleast some of you guys.





    Macaca
    02-22 11:39 AM
    Lou Dobbs makes 6+ Mils and gives his opinions on the best news network at close to prime time. We are rotting in retrogression. Most of us are tiger on IV forums but can not even wimper on non-IV forums.

    The utility of these opinions on IV forums is debatable, at best. However, It will help us if we can convince others that they are not getting the facts from Lou Dobbs and give them the facts.

    Please post fact based opinions at non-IV forums.



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