Wednesday, August 31, 2005


Both Australia and America are countries founded on immigration and both remain to this day friendly to immigration. But WHAT SORT of immigrant do we want? Both Australians and Americans generally seem to agree that skilled and educated immigrants are a benefit to our society but only Australia has had the guts to put that policy into action. American politicians, by contrast, just run around like headless chooks not knowing what to do about the fact that they are largely getting the OPPOSITE sort of immigrant to what any rational person would want.

So what has the USA done about the problem? Severely RESTRICTED the immigration of skilled and educated immigrants! You couldn't make this stuff up. You can have heaps of Mexican criminals and welfare clients strolling into the good old USA without any significant restriction but you MUST NOT have Indian and Chinese engineers and computer programmers. As the WSJ says:

"What this effectively means is that any number of fields dependent on high-skilled labor could be facing worker shortages: science, medicine, engineering, computer programming. It also means that tens of thousands of foreigners--who've graduated from U.S. universities and applied for the visas to stay here and work for American firms--will be shipped home to start companies or work for our global competitors.....

And let's not forget that these immigrant professionals create jobs, as the founders of Intel, Google, Sun Microsystems, Oracle, Computer Associates, Yahoo and numerous other successful ventures can attest. The Public Policy Institute of California did a survey of immigrants to Silicon Valley in 2002 and found that 52% of "foreign-born scientists and engineers have been involved in founding or running a start-up company either full-time or part-time."


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