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  • abracadabra102
    01-02 11:39 AM
    Non-state actors are mentioned a lot here. Who are these non-state actors and who is responsible for acts of these non-state actors? If a few Pakistani citizens cross over and strike Indian cities at random and disappear back into Pakistan, what are India's options? Just to pray that in some 30-50 years into future all Pakistani terrorists will somehow realize their folly and turn into saints?

    We are also missing the elephant in the room. India has 150 million muslims and we have our share of Hindu fundamentalists. These Hindu fundamentalist groups have been trying for a long time to equate terrorism to Islam (targeting Indian muslims) and Indian public at large rejected this notion so far (rightly so) and that may change in future and it may not be long before a Narendra Modi becomes Prime Minister. It will be a shame if a few terrorists destroyed that very tenet of India - "Unity in Diversity".

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  • Macaca
    10-14 11:06 AM
    Getting Around Rules on Lobbying: Despite New Law, Firms Find Ways To Ply Politicians ( By Elizabeth Williamson | Washington Post Staff Writer, October 14, 2007

    In recent days, about 100 members of Congress and hundreds of Hill staffers attended two black-tie galas, many of them as guests of corporations and lobbyists that paid as much as $2,500 per ticket.

    Because accepting such gifts from special interests is now illegal, the companies did not hand the tickets directly to lawmakers or staffers. Instead, the companies donated the tickets back to the charity sponsors, with the names of recipients they wanted to see and sit with at the galas.

    The arrangement was one of the most visible efforts, but hardly the only one, to get around new rules passed by Congress this summer limiting meals, travel, gifts and campaign contributions from lobbyists and companies that employ them.

    Last week, Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) and Republican leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) found bipartisan agreement on maintaining one special privilege. Together they put language into a defense appropriations bill that would keep legal the practice of some senators of booking several flights on days they return home, keeping the most convenient reservation and dumping the rest without paying cancellation fees -- a practice some airlines say could violate the new law.

    Senators also have granted themselves a grace period on requirements that they pay pricey charter rates for private jet travel. Lobbyists continue to bundle political contributions to lawmakers but are now making sure the totals do not trigger new public reporting rules. And with presidential nominating conventions coming next summer, lawmakers and lobbyists are working together to save another tradition endangered by the new rules: the convention party feting one lawmaker.

    "You can't have a party honoring a specific member. It's clear to me -- but it's not clear to everybody," said Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), chairman of the Senate ethics committee. She said the committee is getting "these questions that surround the edges -- 'If it's midnight the night before,' 'If I wear one shoe and not the other.' "

    Democrats touted the new ethics law as the most thorough housecleaning since Watergate, and needed after a host of scandals during 12 years of Republican rule. Prompted by disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff's wheeling and dealing and the jailing of three members of Congress on corruption charges in recent years, the law, signed by President Bush on Sept. 14, was heralded by congressional leaders as a real change in Washington's influence game.

    But the changes have prompted anxiety about what perks are still permissible. In recent months, the House and Senate ethics committees have fielded more than 1,000 questions from lobbyists and congressional staffers seeking guidance -- or an outright waiver -- for rules banning weekend trips and pricey wedding gifts, five-course dinners and backstage passes.

    Looking for ways to keep spreading freebies legally, hundreds of lobbyists have been attending seminars at Washington law firms to learn the ins and outs of the new law.

    At a recent American League of Lobbyists briefing, Cleta Mitchell of the Foley & Lardner law firm said that while the law bans lobbyists from buying lawmakers or staffers a meal, it is silent on picking up bar tabs. A woman in the third row asked hopefully, "You can buy them as many drinks as you want, as often as you want?"

    No, Mitchell said, not unless the drinkers are the lobbyist's personal friends, and she pays from her own pocket.

    If that rule was clear to some, two charity dinners allowed hazier interpretations.

    Most of the 40 lawmakers dining on red snapper ceviche and beef tenderloin at the recent Hispanic Caucus Institute gala at the Washington Convention Center got their tickets from corporations, said Paul Brathwaite, a principal with the Podesta Group lobbying firm.

    Brathwaite said about a dozen of Podesta's corporate clients bought tables of 10 for $5,000 to $25,000 for the Hispanic dinner and the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation gala over the past three weeks. The companies then gave the tickets back to the foundations -- along with lists of lawmakers and staff members they wanted to invite. Some lawmakers did buy their own tickets, Brathwaite said, but many did not.

    The rules require that charity sponsors do the inviting and decide who sits where. But "at the end of the night, everyone is happy," said Hispanic Caucus Institute spokesman Scott Gunderson Rosa.

    "The corporate folks want us at their tables, of course," said Rep. Raul M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.), who sat at a Fannie Mae-sponsored table at the Hispanic dinner.

    Another provision of the new ethics law bans House members from flying on corporate jets. But senators, including the half-dozen presidential candidates among them, can still do so. Previously they were required to reimburse plane owners the equivalent of a first-class ticket, but now they must pay charter rates, which can increase travel costs tenfold.

    The Senate ethics committee decided not to enforce that rule for at least 60 days after it took effect Sept. 14, citing "the lack of experience in many offices in determining 'charter rates.' "

    The decision surprised some Senate staffers, Mitchell said, one of whom e-mailed her to say, "Welcome to the world of skirting around the rules we pass."

    "Breathtaking. . . . In my view, they're not complying with the plain language of the law," Mitchell said. "I think it should be easier for members of Congress to travel, not harder. But what I don't appreciate as a citizen is Congress passing something but then interpreting it so it doesn't mean what the law clearly says."

    The law has dragged into view several such perks that members long enjoyed but didn't reveal -- until they sought exemptions to the new rules.

    Lawmakers for years have booked several flights for a day when they plan to leave town. When they finish work, they take the most convenient flight and cancel the rest without paying fees, a privilege denied others. But after the new law passed, some airlines stopped the practice, worried that it violates the gift ban.

    Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Robert F. Bennett (R-Utah) appealed to the Senate ethics committee to allow multiple bookings. Then Reid and McConnell added language to the defense bill that, if it passes, would extend the perk to staffers, too.

    New bans on corporate-paid fun could hit hardest at the 2008 presidential nominating conventions. The law prohibits parties honoring a lawmaker on convention days; some lobbyists say the wording means such parties before or after those days are okay. House and Senate members have asked the ethics committees for guidance.

    "That's one of the issues that's going to need some clarification," said Senate ethics panelist Ken Salazar (D-Colo.), whose home state will host the Democrats in August.

    Meanwhile, lobbyists are booking up Denver's trendy warehouse district and Minnesota's Mall of America, near the GOP convention site in Minneapolis-St. Paul, for the pre-convention weekends. Host committees for both conventions say they will honor state delegations, including members of Congress who take part.

    "I think you'll see a lot of umbrella invitations," said Patrick Murphy, lobbyist for mCapitol Management, who is planning Democratic convention parties. "Invite 'Friends of Montana' and see who shows up."

    One of the most fought-over parts of the law requires that lobbyists who bundle multiple campaign contributions totaling more than $15,000 file reports every six months. But lawyers say that a fundraiser for Hillary Rodham Clinton signals a way to avoid public reporting when that rule kicks in Jan. 1.

    Female politicos have been e-mailing each other a slick online invitation to "Make History With Hillary," a summit and fundraiser on Wednesday. The invitation encourages women to bundle for Clinton by promising them online credit for each ticket they sell. Women who have already donated their legal individual limit of $2,300 cannot attend unless they bring in another $4,000.

    "It's a universe of junior bundlers under the radar screen," said Kenneth Gross, a campaign finance lawyer at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. For the lobbyists among them, the amounts are so small that "you don't have to worry about tracking them, and it would add up to a material sum over time" -- but less than the $15,000 limit.

    If a lobbyist asked his advice on the practice, Gross said, "I'd say 'Go for it.' "

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  • texcan
    08-06 04:56 PM
    10 Husbands, Still a Virgin
    A lawyer married a woman who had previously divorced ten husbands.

    On their wedding night, she told her new husband, "Please be gentle, I'm still a virgin."

    "What?" said the puzzled groom.

    "How can that be if you've been married ten times?"

    "Well, Husband #1 was a sales representative: he kept telling me how great it was going to be.

    Husband #2 was in software services: he was never really sure how it was supposed to function, but he said he'd look into it and get back to me.

    Husband #3 was from field services: he said everything checked out diagnostically but he just couldn't get the system up.

    Husband #4 was in telemarketing: even though he knew he had the order, he didn't know when he would be able to deliver.

    Husband #5 was an engineer: he understood the basic process but wanted three years to research, implement, and design a new state-of-the-art method.

    Husband #6 was from finance and administration: he thought he knew how, but he wasn't sure whether it was his job or not.

    Husband #7 was in marketing: although he had a nice product, he was never sure how to position it.

    Husband #8 was a psychologist: all he ever did was talk about it.

    Husband #9 was a gynecologist: all he did was look at it.

    Husband #10 was a stamp collector: all he ever did was... God! I miss him! But now that I've married you, I'm really excited!"

    "Good," said the new husband, "but, why?"

    "You're a lawyer. This time I know I'm gonna get screwed!"

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  • senthil1
    09-26 09:29 AM
    But still I watched that Obama was favoring increasing GC and H1b. Just he is opposite to outsourcing that too he may cut some tax benefits for the companies which are outsourcing. That will not have much impact on outsourcing.Basically two candidates are favoring high skilled immigrants. But everything is on the hands of congress.
    I am a big supporter of Obama and a big fan and am eagerly looking forward to see him as our next President of United States. As a legal highly skilled immigrant what can I expect? Well, not sure if I would see myself living here anymore. I have been in the green card queue for more than 8 years now and still waiting. Will Obama's administration do anything for people like me to help reduce backlog? I doubt such a thing will ever happen. I would see myself and people like me discouraged and start packing our bags and move on with life.

    Why do I feel discouraged? If anything is going to happen for the immigrant community when Sen. Obama becomes the President, it is going to be in the lines of CIR 2007. There would be provisions to make illegal immigrants as legal and remove backlogs to family based quota whereas posing harsh restrictions on H1b visas and reducing Green Card quotas and scrap AC21 portability and try to experiment with some new kind of skilled immigration system.

    The above is very evident based on the fact that Senator Durbin has been very hostile to EB immigrants. It is evident that Senator Durbin will make the calls when Senator Obama becomes the president.

    Please post your opinions. This is a very important discussion. It is very important that the community see what is in store for us when the new Administration takes charge.

    A lot of folks in the EB community are looking forward to 2009 thinking something will definitely happen. Yes, something will definitely happen - and that may not help us


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  • mariner5555
    04-14 04:41 PM
    but most of the people that I know of, who have very young kids ( 1 - 5/6 year olds) ..buying a house was a right decision. (and common sense says the same thing).
    I know people who bought townhouses, not big houses (thus paying mortgage which is slightly more than the apartment rents). They are not slogging extra and they are having single income. I keep re-iterating that what I meant is when things are conducive and situation is right. I do not know which part of that you do not understand.
    I said there are exceptions ..which part of that you don't understand !!
    since you are resting yr case ..I won't drag this more.

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  • NKR
    08-05 08:38 AM
    Why did they not take the employer to court? Why make the EB2 line suffer for these employer's faults?

    If an employer wrongly files your case under EB3 instead of EB2 or EB1, then the onus is on you to challenge them and take them to court if need be.

    And start the GC process all over again?. well isn't there an easy option of converting to EB2?. :)


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  • Macaca
    08-08 09:19 PM
    A Shameless Congress Applauds `Ethics' Law ( By Margaret Carlson (, August 8, 2007

    To much fanfare and self-congratulation, the U.S. Congress passed ethics legislation last week supposedly making the members subject to the same standards of behavior the rest of us live by.

    At almost the same time, a federal court handed down a decision involving a congressman whose office was raided by the FBI last year as part of a bribery case that included the earlier discovery of $90,000 he stashed in his home freezer. The ruling reminds us how much more Washington is like Vegas than Peoria. Under the Constitution, a congressman can protect his legislative files from being searched. In other words, what happens in your Capitol Hill office stays in your Capitol Hill office.

    The ruling came in the matter of Representative William Jefferson, a Louisiana Democrat indicted for bribery in June. Jefferson allegedly got the $90,000 from a telecommunications entrepreneur who enlisted his help in getting approval from a Nigerian official to do business in that country.

    The court didn't buy that the Justice Department did everything it could during the search to shield privileged documents, short of letting Jefferson conduct his own raid. A ``filter team'' removed any material that smacked of Jefferson's legislative duties. The court found the effort insufficient ``to protect the privilege'' of the legislative branch to be free from intrusions by the executive branch.

    Shielding Lawbreakers

    This means that under the principle of shielding lawmakers, lawbreakers may be shielded from legitimate law enforcement. Jefferson's lawyer Robert Trout was thrilled, saying the decision shows that every member of Congress has an ``absolute right to review his records first and shield legislative material from review.'' Federal agents get to see what's left.

    Jefferson must be kicking himself. Why didn't he think to take the loot out of the freezer in his home and disperse it among the files labeled ``congressional bills'' at his office?

    Consider the possibilities. Yes, it would have been hard for former Representative Randy ``Duke'' Cunningham, now in prison, to keep his Louis XIV commode hidden in his office. But he could have easily stuffed any records about goodies provided by his defense contractor pals, such as the lease for his yacht ``Duke-Stir,'' into a file drawer labeled ``Hearings.''

    Like the Jefferson affair, the case of Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska could give a whole new meaning to the phrase Capitol Hideaway. Stevens's house in Alaska was raided last week by the FBI and Internal Revenue Service as part of a broad corruption probe. Stevens has multiple ties to businessman Bill Allen, who, since pleading guilty to bribery in May, is said to be singing like an Arctic loon.

    If Only He'd Known

    With the court's ruling, Stevens could have shipped anything he didn't want to be discovered to the Hart Senate Office Building for safekeeping.

    Stevens and Jefferson are just two of at least a dozen members of Congress under investigation, which puts increasing pressure on the lawmakers to do something about corruption. That something, unfortunately, has loopholes large enough for a Gulfstream V to fly through.

    The ethics legislation allows members to do all kinds of things -- as long as they disclose them. Want to have a fat cat contributor? Just make sure he discloses that he's bundling donations from friends, clients and employees.

    Don't want to give up earmarks? You can still shoehorn an appropriation for millions of dollars onto an unrelated piece of legislation as long as you put your name on it.

    `Bridge to Nowhere'

    The law would have done nothing to stop Stevens from getting his ``Bridge to Nowhere,'' a quarter-mile span connecting an Alaskan town to an island of 50 people, a couple of years ago.

    Gifts and free travel are banned, unless they are part of campaigning. In other words, Congressman A can't have a rare rib-eye, creamed spinach and a bottle of Merlot with Businessman B at the Palm unless it's in conjunction with fundraising. In the case of congressional ethics, two wrongs do make a right.

    The reason disclosure no longer works as a deterrent is that shame no longer works. As the ethics legislation was rolling to passage, Stevens, at a private luncheon with Republican colleagues, threatened to hold the whole thing up if the ban on traveling on corporate aircraft wasn't removed. He will still be able to fly Air Lobbyist. He'll just have to pay for it at commercial charter rates.

    In wanting to keep his perks, Stevens may be the most outspoken member, but he's, by no means, alone. ``Ethics'' is the one area in Congress where there is heartwarming bipartisanship.

    `Culture of Corruption'

    Former Republican Speaker Newt Gingrich and Democrat Thomas Foley filed legal briefs in support of Jefferson. When the court said the search was unlawful, Speaker Nancy Pelosi applauded. Earlier, Pelosi, who once pledged to end the Republican ``culture of corruption,'' took away Jefferson's coveted seat on the House Ways and Means Committee after the FBI raid on his office only to try to award him a coveted seat on the homeland security panel.

    Some legislation is worse than no legislation. Senator John McCain, showing again why he'll never be president, said the ethics bill will delude voters into thinking things have been fixed when they haven't.

    ``This will continue the earmarking and pork barrel projects,'' the Arizona Republican said. ``Again, the American people will have been deceived.''

    Most of the other members are chest-thumping as if they've really done something. The public would be better off if Congress had to live by the laws that apply to everyone else, criminal and civil, and at least a few of the Ten Commandments. I'd start with thou shalt not steal -- and work from there.

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  • EB3IFiasco
    08-05 10:41 PM
    We'll have to just make sure we file an amicus on behalf of the USCIS if a case like this goes forward...


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  • sayantan76
    01-11 03:48 PM
    I don�t agree with your argument. Who is holing up the innocents..? Hamas using the kids and civilians as human shield. I also don�t consider the civilians as innocent there. They are whole heartedly support and elected Hamas -the terror organization. They are the one poisoning the kids with hatred. But I feel very sorry for the kids and the developments are very much disturbing.

    The Hamas, Hezbollah, Iran and Syria � the devil�s club will never achieve their goal � wipe out ISREAL from the map. ISREAL is IS REAL and this mullahs needs to understand that.
    we should be careful here - there is a thin line between terrorism and legitimate freedom struggle....also - the classification may very well vary based on which prism are you looking through.....for example - Bhagat Singh and the likes were considered terrorists by occupying British colonial power but were considered revolutionaries and freedom fighters by the Indian can we say that the Indian Freedom Struggle was any more just and legitimate than the Palestinian desire for self governance...

    Another example - were the Mughal rulers in medieval India an occupying invader or were they populist rules loved by the masses? Based on how you answer this question - Chatrapati Shivaji either becomes a glorious Maratha freedom fighter or a terrorist leader....

    On the current situation - Hamas fighters live in a densely populated of course - there are civilians there - what do you expect - Hamas would say - Israel is coming to fight us - lets find some sort of Panipat (check battles of panipat on wikipedia for those who dont know) or Kurukshetra (check Mahabharata on wikipedia) where we can fight Israelies in a vast unpopulated area - Israel is the invading army here - they have chosen to fight in densely populated areas - Hamas is merely responding....

    One of the newspapers today suggested that Hamas has booby trapped Gaza and thats causing problems for Israeli army and somehow Hamas is wrong in doing so - guys what do you expect - Israelis would be welcomed with garlands in Gaza? If some armed enemies were attacking your home and you knew you did not have the might to directly face them - wont you try every underhand tactic in the book to cause as much damage to the enemy as possible?

    While I am no supporter of Hamas or religious extremism - i think its important to study the Palestinian/Israel issue as an ethnic problem as opposed to a religious issue.... - holocaust was a terrible thing to happen but just because of the collective Western guilt conscience (of having done nothing to prevent Holocaust)- the Palestinian/ Israeli dispute has never been judged objectively and one side has always been given a long rope while the other has gotten the short end of the stick.

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  • baala9
    08-06 10:43 AM
    Okay lets take your example. A & B are graduates with a Bachelors degree (A is a Mechanical and B is Computer Science). A decides to pursue higher study in Mechanical field and B takes up a Software job. After a year they file for B' EB3 at his work, while A is still at school. A joins a software company (His Masters in Mechanical is worth nothing now). EB2 is filed for A just because he has a Masters, B is also eligible for EB2 by that time. Why can't B get a earlier PD? Atleast B got relevant industry experience. How come A is superior than B?

    Also why should EB2's get the spillover visas from EB1? Do they have a Ph.D? Why can't they allocate spillover visas from EB1 equally between EB2 and EB3?

    In that case A will be eligible only for a EB3 based on the Job requirement.( Since eligibility is based on the Job requirement and not the person's qualification)


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  • alterego
    11-11 10:50 PM
    Americans are fair minded for the most part. They saw the propoganda of the far right for what it was. This election did not tilt on immigration, but on other issues. However the fact that the conservatives got zero traction from their hard line approach implies that the country was looking for a more comprehensive solution.
    I think that the american public does want secure borders and to some extent is unhappy with the status quo on the border. However they are also cognisant of the fact that immigrant labour benefits them and their lifestyles tremendously. They by and large do not favour a get tough only policy. They could easily embrace a policy where hardworking people can "earn their way" into the kingdom. Bipartisanship will perhaps show the way forward. Imagine those guys like Sensenbrenner,Tancredo would not even negotiate with the Senate or allow anything pro any kind of immigration to a general house vote taking advantage of their majority position by their "majority of the majority rule". They even actively stripped legal immigration provisions in conference last year. As for Sensenbrenner and his types. Lets see how much they enjoy being in the "minority of the minority" now, I guess the bulldog that chewed out the senators and cleaned his teeth with their bones is now but a mere poodle in the room! Gotta love elections in a democracy.

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  • Macaca
    09-24 04:30 PM
    How To Write To Congress ( BY CAREY GREENBERG-BERGER | Consumerist, SEP 23 2007

    Writing to Congress is the single best way to express your view on public policy. The average consumer has a surprising ability to influence legislation by crafting a well written missive and avoiding several common mistakes.

    Why Personal Letters Beat Form Letters

    Don't get suckered in by the quick and easy "Write to Congress!" form letters littering the internet. Form letters are not an expression of values; they are a show of organizational strength. If the NRA convinces five million people to send letters opposing gun control, it shows that the NRA can muster five million people to action, not that five million people necessarily care about gun laws. Congressional offices know this and generally disregard form letters.

    So what happens when you send a letter?

    Every office has its own procedures for tabulating constituent correspondence, but most will produce a report at the end of week breaking down how many letters were received by issue area, separating out form letters from letters sent by individual constituents.

    Members treat each type of letter differently, but most look for individual letters as a barometer of their district's concerns. These are the letters that have the most influence, the ones we will show you how to write.

    What Should Your Letter Say?

    We adhere to the three paragraph rule: introduce yourself, introduce your issue, request action. Congressional offices have staffers whose days are spent solely on the mail, so make their lives easier by keeping letter succinct and to the point.

    Introduce Yourself: There is a two-prong test for determining your worth: 1) Are you a constituent? 2) Are you an important constituent? Feel free to puff up your chest. Are you a lifelong member of the district? Are you associated with community groups? Say so! Convince the reader that yours is a voice of experience and wisdom.

    Be specific: Don't just ask a Member to oppose mandatory binding arbitration agreements. Ask them to rush to the floor to support S.1782, The Arbitration Fairness Act of 2007.

    Marshall Facts: Your argument - and you are making an argument - must be supported by facts. Feel free to use facts gleaned from us or other sources, but don't copy and paste paragraphs of pre-written text from form letters. Personal experiences are particularly effective, and often moving. Share them!
    Be Exceedingly Polite, Please: Congress attracts haughty personalities. Staffers don't appreciate being spoken down to or insulted. You are trying to rally them to your cause, so be nice!

    Clearly State Your Request: Plainly tell your representative that you want them to support or oppose a certain bill. If you want a response, explicitly (but politely!) ask for one.

    It should go without saying that your letter should follow all formal style guidelines, such as a return name and address, and should be free of spelling and grammatical errors.

    Send Your Letter To The Right Place

    Only write to your representatives. You have three: one Representative in the House, and two Senators. Do not send more than three letters. Some citizens try to get their voice heard by writing to all 435 members of the House. Congressional courtesy compels the 434 Members who do not represent the zealot to forward his letter to the one lucky Member who does. This angers the Member's staff greatly at the expense of any point you are trying to make.

    The addresses for your Representatives and Senators are available online, but don't waste your time with an email. Letters carry significantly more weight. Send your letter to the Capitol, where the legislative staff is based, though it will take a while to arrive since all incoming Congressional mail is irradiated thanks to those still-unidentified Anthrax mailers.

    For an even greater impact, send your letter care of the staffer covering the issue. These staffers - called Legislative Assistants - are the Member's eyes and ears on their assigned issue areas. Finding the staffer destined to read your letter is easy: call the Capitol switchboard (open 24 hours a day!) at (202) 224-3121, ask for your Member's office, and ask the person who answers for the name of the staffer handling the issue area or bill number. Once you get that name, address your letter like this:

    Member Of Congress
    c/o Staffer
    Office Building/Number
    Washington, DC 20515

    What Should You Expect In Return?

    Depends. There are 535 Congressional offices and each handles constituent correspondence differently. The vast majority respond to letters with either a form letter pre-written by a Legislative Assistant, or with a more personal response written by a Legislative Correspondent. Controversial issues that attract many letters normally receive a form letter response, while smaller issues or specific questions often receive the attention of a personalized response.


    Members of Congress work for you. Without your votes, they won't stay in office. They go to great lengths to cultivate a positive relationship with you, their boss. Very few people take the time to write to a Member of Congress, so the few that do carry a disproportionate influence.

    Fifteen minutes is well worth the time to influence a $2 trillion enterprise.


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  • suavesandeep
    06-25 11:35 AM
    Nobody is saying that the world is coming to and end in 2 years.IMHO myself and many others would agree that long term buying a house makes sense. The question is does buying now if you haven't already bought your primary residential home make any sense.

    From the current data, Do you think a guy who buys a house in 2009 would come ahead of somebody who would buys in 2011 when the housing market may have fully bottomed out ? I know its impossible to time the market. But all indicators to name a few below point that home prices should continue to decline.

    Unemployment is still on the way up. We will cross 10% anytime soon is a given.
    Excess housing inventory
    Home prices are still above the trend line. Historically its common for the correction to swing even below the trend line before it stabilizes.

    Again IMHO, If you haven't bought a home yet, Save so that you can make a bigger down payment (Own more of the house when you buy one) and check the market again mid 2010.

    Giving your example.
    Lets say guy buys in 2009, and another guy buys in 2011 (Assuming home prices would have further gone down using existing data points).. Who do you think would come ahead in 2019.

    I agree with you 100%. These guys here are all getting worked up as if the world will come to an end in 2 years and it is unreasonable to think beyong 2011. A regular investor like us, someone w/ a job, one who saves in the bank, and/or dollar cost averages in a 401(K), should never think short term.

    Let's see 10 years from now who will be in a better position - the guy who owned a home or a guy that is renting.

    Of course, some guys will start complaining about GC, but then other posts here are claiming that regardless of GC, buying a house now is dissasterous.

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  • Macaca
    07-08 06:54 PM
    In approving another h-4 visa; they askd h-1b person why they didn't get paid for three month when they entered USA. Company president along with h-1b beneficiary said that he had to climitize himself and then it took a while to get the social security number. Once he got it then he got paid. Visa officer laughed at the explanation and gave the h-4 visa. Six months later; company gets a DOL audit request for possible h-1b violations. DOL officer said that consulate sent them notification that there was h-1b violations.

    Must an H-1B alien be working at all times? ( D&vgnextchannel=1847c9ee2f82b010VgnVCM10000045f3d6a1 RCRD)

    As long as the employer/employee relationship exists, an H-1B alien is still in status. An H-1B alien may work in full or part-time employment and remain in status. An H-1B alien may also be on vacation, sick/maternity/paternity leave, on strike, or otherwise inactive without affecting his or her status.


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  • perm2gc
    08-11 11:52 AM
    In February, Dobbs asked a guest on his show: "The fact is that we are seeing hundreds of jobs being outsourced on the basis purely of a corporation's interest in achieving the lowest possible price for labor. Does that make sense to you?" Later on the same show, he declared, "Corporate America and U.S. multinationals are shipping jobs for only one reason, not for greater productivity, not for efficiencies, those are purely code words for cheaper labor costs."

    Dobbs even asks viewers to send him the names of companies that outsource. He then posts the list (scroll down) on his CNN website, under the heading, "These are U.S. companies either sending American jobs overseas, or choosing to employ cheap overseas labor, instead of American workers."

    "The results of this issue are crucial to the kind of country we live in," Dobbs told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in April.

    But there comes a time when Dobbs takes off his anti-outsourcing hat. That's when he switches from financial journalist to investment advisor-for-hire, peddling a monthly newsletter containing his investment recommendations. Pony up $398 and you receive Dobbs' investment tips for two years. You'll recognize some of the companies that Dobbs recommends. That's because they're on his list of firms that are "exporting America" by shutting down U.S. operations and opening overseas facilities.

    The Lou Dobbs Money Letter is published by Phillips International Inc., which is associated with Eagle Publishing, a leading publisher of conservative-themed books. In each issue, Dobbs singles out one favored company, in which he encourages subscribers to invest. He conducts an invariably softball interview with the firm's CEO, which allows both Dobbs and his guest to tout the company's prospects.

    Unlike most investment advisors, Dobbs goes beyond talking up the earning potential of these companies. He typically goes out of his way to praise them as good corporate citizens. The newsletter keeps a running tally of the companies profiled, under the heading, "The following companies have been featured in the Lou Dobbs Money Letter as those 'doing good business with good people.'" The appeal is alluring: You're not just buying a smart investment choice, you're buying a piece of good citizenship.

    Dobbs devoted a column in the March issue to touting the prospects of the Minnesota-based Toro Company, which makes outdoor landscaping-maintenance equipment. He told subscribers that Toro was a "long-term wealth-builder," and praised Toro's "formal code of ethics, something I think is sorely needed at more of America's companies," and its "...exemplary corporate governance structure, which aligns the interests of shareholders, employees, and customers." He concluded his interview with Toro CEO Kendrick Melrose by frankly telling him, "I like the way you treat your shareholders, employees, and customers."

    One wonders whether Dobbs' admiration extends to Toro's 2002 decision to move 15% of its workforce -- about 800 jobs -- to Juarez, Mexico. Indeed, CEO Kendrick Melrose might be interested to know that Toro appears on Dobbs' own list of companies that are "exporting America."

    And Toro is not alone. Of the 14 companies Dobbs has highlighted for investors since starting his newsletter last year, eight appear on his CNN website as companies that outsource jobs.

    Greenpoint Financial is another company that's received conflicting treatment from Dobbs. CEO Tom Johnson enjoyed the Dobbs interview treatment in June 2003. Dobbs promised readers, "I think you'll find Tom's comments and the way he runs his business thought-provoking and insightful."

    Apparently one of the "thought-provoking and insightful" methods that Dobbs was referring to was not the 2002 decision by Greenpoint to export much of its mortgage and customer-service operations to Bangalore, India, a move that produced significant savings, but that cost 150 U.S. workers their jobs. Greenpoint Mortgage, a subsidiary of Greenpoint Financial, appears on Dobbs' list of outsourcers.

    When Dobbs features a company in his newsletter, he tends to stand by them, no matter what information subsequently comes to light. In December 2003, Boeing CEO Phil Condit was forced to resign amidst an ethics scandal. Dobbs had interviewed Condit for the newsletter back in June, and wrote at the time: "Boeing ranks Number 35 on Fortune's list of most admired companies. I think Phil has a lot to do with that."

    After Condit's resignation, Dobbs ran a "Special Boeing Update" in the December edition of the newsletter, in which he told subscribers: "In the face of adversity, the company is being up-front and honest abut its problems...Boeing has just proven that its priorities are in the right place."

    But according to the Communications Workers of America (CWA), Boeing has sent 5000 U.S. jobs overseas in recent years. And Dobbs' assurances that Boeing's priorities are in the right place don't seem to square with his inclusion of the company on the "exporting America" list.

    Similarly, in November 2003, Dobbs called Bank One chief Jamie Dimon "a conscientious CEO," who "runs a tight ship with solid corporate values."

    Late last year, Bank One announced plans to merge with JP Morgan-Chase and Co., which has a reputation for shipping jobs overseas. In another special update, Dobbs reassured his readers that, "[Dimon's] ability to orchestrate this merger and have it viewed as a positive move by a testament to the fact that Jamie did it for all the right reasons. As a numbers guy, Jamie knows what works and what doesn't. And I'm confident he's going to do some remarkable work in the coming months."

    Again, Dobbs neglected to tell readers that Bank One is on his "exporting America" list. According to a company spokesman, Bank One has outsourced two to three hundred jobs -- mostly in software development -- to India in the last few years.

    The list goes on. In May 2003 Dobbs talked up Washington Mutual to investors. According to the CWA, the banking services giant has sent 30 jobs overseas. Washington Mutual appears on Dobbs' CNN list of outsourcers.

    In August 2003, Dobbs promoted Office Depot, telling investors that, "[T]he company and CEO Bruce Nelson believe strongly in making Office Depot a 'compelling place to work, shop, and invest.'" Sure enough, Office Depot is on Dobb's list of companies that are "outsourcing America."

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  • r2i2009
    05-04 01:10 PM
    House...forget it......

    It will never reach those highs again...

    In US..RE is done.

    Not 485...look at the number of foreclosures.....and inflation.....

    untill the war is over...forget...


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  • unitednations
    08-03 01:52 PM
    Hi United Nation,

    If AC21 is so difficult to use what about EAD?? Is all these apply to EAD too??


    No; it is not hard to use.

    However; the way people use labor substitution, future base employment, labors in fast processing states, going from consulting companies to "permanent jobs"; job descriptions not matching, companies getting ability to pay queries on approved cases; uscis changing their interpretations of laws/regulations, people getting off h-1b after six years.... all of these things add a lot of complexities.

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  • yabadaba
    08-11 08:24 AM

    maybe we can do an official press release showing how dumb these people are. as far as i know all this information can be downloaded directly from the flc datacenter. we need to start writing op eds against people like lou dobbs who keep skewing the debate

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  • Raju
    05-24 03:40 PM
    Nothing new. Of course the US needs to bring the bright and the best. Yes, I agree with you the US apparently doesn't have the necessary number of people with advanced degrees in science right now. I never told you to shut down the H1B or decrease the numbers. I am just saying, can people respect the other side and suggest more sensible mechanisms ? Can one understand that an automatic increase of 20% per year can cause hardship to citizens caught in a future and unexpected recession ? That's all I am saying.

    Folks, this is what concerns me. We are all very educated people and we cannot have a decent conversation. Many in this thread gets angry at me. As Lou Dobbs says, that is shocking. :-)

    Have a good one.


    Hey do you that if something like that happens then Congress will decrease the numbers automatically

    08-05 07:03 PM
    I have seen you post before, and with this post you lost some of my respect. You need to be rational and coherent if you want to debate the issue. Not emotional and silly.

    Come on!, give me a break. You guys are now worried that EB3 will spoil your (what I still consider, ill gotten) party by PD porting. You now come up with arguments about what is EB2.

    If EB2 is ill gotten, so is EB3. Lets all go home? Personally I am not in IT so if all IT is so fraudulent, I'm happy to see you all leave and finally get my GC :-)

    First argument: "EB2 requires advanced degree"

    If that is the case, there is no one who is eligible for Eb2, as "Advanced degrees" is not a degree that is offered by any university in US. Mostly the ones I know offer, Masters and PHD and likes. No one says I am offering "advanced degree". ;)

    Further more, advanced degree is subjective. Bachelors is advanced compared to Diploma, which is advanced compared to 10th passed, which is advanced compared someone who failed 10th.

    This is the stupidest argument I have ever heard. In the US the Bachelors degree is the considered the basic or primary degree for thsoe that attend regular college. Anything above that is treated as "advanced". This rgument makes you truly truly look quite farcical.

    Second: It is not fair to allow EB3s to port.
    It is in the law. that part is not grounds for a lawsuit. If you still want to complain, then complain about the fact that AC21 allows you to jump jobs without even getting your GC.

    The law allows porting. the difinition of "equivelant' in work experience comes from a regulation/memo. Do some reasrch before posting.

    Third (these are my own points)

    When people got their F1, they said there are here without immigrant intention. Why is USCIS giving them H1 and then also accepting GCs for them. Come to think of it, OPT is not required by any university for granting the degree, so why are F1s even allowed to work??

    Are you drunk today? When you get an F1 you have "non immigrant intent". the law recognizes that you can "change intent". If you tried getting an H1 or GC within 6 mnths of entering on a F1, USCIS would create a huge problem for you. This is also the basis for the ability to chnage jobs after a GC. that you can change your "intent" after a reasonable time. otherwise the Gc would be worthless.

    The point I am trying to make is that if you try to open one can of worms, everyone else has a Costo or a Sams club to go to and buy a boat load of cans of worms to open - that is going to put you in a bad situation.

    I have no cans of worms. I have "very advanced" degress and a job that no bachelors could ever do, even with 100 years experience - and that is by law.
    So I don't care for such arguments. You sound very scared on the other hand. What are you hiding?

    If I read correctly, every EB3 here thinks that most EB2 is fraud. Sounds like Numbers USA and PG talk to me. I'd like to remind you that thsoe folks whose language you are now talking, are even more opposed to EB3. take some time and read what they have to say about EB3 in the context of "best and brightest". I suggest seriously thinking before posting.

    07-11 10:33 AM
    Hi UN,
    First of all my sincere gratitude to you for your patience and the time you put in to give a detailed reply to all cases.

    Here's my situation(I think a case of status violation)

    I did an L1 to H1 transfer in 2005. My L1 was valid till APRIL 2006. So my intention was to work with L1 employer till April 2006 and then switch to H1 employer.

    H1 employer also applied for a change of status, which I was not aware of that time. I asked the H1 company's lawyer whether I could continue with my L1 employer after getting the H1 and she said it's fine.

    So I got the H1B approval in Oct 2005, but still continued with L1 employer till APRIL 2006, then switched to H1.

    Your last action dictates the status you are in. As the last I-94 has H1 Status, you have 30 days to start working with new employer (or apply for CoS to stay on L1). It is usually a good idea to file H1 without Change of Status if you don't know the start date. In that case you have to re-enter US on that visa to get into that status.

    Recently I came to know that this could be an issue. When I was filling the G-325A form, I wondered if I specify that I worked with the L1 employer till APRIL 2006, would they catch this?? Even if they catch , how big an issue would this be??

    If I put the dates to reflect the dates to show that I quit my L1 employer in Oct 2005 itself, would this be an issue?? I guess in this case, if by any chance they ask for any further evidence like pay stubs or W2 in that period of time, I would be in trouble.

    I would always suggest the real dates on any form. Section 245(k) covers out-of-status issues. Why lie and caught for fraud when we have protection under law.

    If caught for fraud, it can cause some very serious issues. I-485 can be denied just on this basis.

    From what I have read from the forum, A lawful re-entry should clear the violation in my case right?? I haven't filed the I-485 yet. My I-140 is pending.
    Do they catch this during I-140 stage??
    Can I go to Canada/Mexico for stamping? where would I get an appointment at the earliest??

    1. Re-entry erases out-of-status and puts one in valid status. As per section 245(k), one is required to be instatus (or out of status < 180 days) since last entry into US.
    2. You were out-of-status, not unlawful presence (i.e. staying past due I-94 date). So visa can not denied on the basis of out-of-status.
    3. Not sure about getting visa from Canada. Is it your first time for getting H1 visa stamp?

    Not a legal advice.