Bad H-1B Medicine

In his collumn "H-1B Is Just Another Gov't. Subsidy," Paul Donnelly notes the incongruity of massive layoffs in the IT industry while the industry continues to pressure Congress for high levels of foreign "temporary" workers . But his solution of offering instant green cards to new arrivals instead of the H-1B visa is in itself incongruous.

Laid-off Americans won't be invited back to work if industry can look to a perpetual fountain of younger and therefore cheaper foreign workers. Nor will working Americans see wages rise in the face of this greater competition. The fundamentals - supply and demand, age discrimination, cheaper labor - all make Donnelly's prescription as bad as the current medicine he decries. The H-1B program needs to be scuttled, not replaced with another equally harmful scheme.

Tim Aaronson

El Cerrito, Calif.


Copyright © 2002 IDG Communications, Inc.

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