There were several people on our side of the aisle that were there to witness the hearing including Patrick Thibodeau of Computerworld magazine, David North from the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), Brendan Kavanagh, and Dr. Gene Nelson, PhD.
Perhaps the most important part of North's commentary was the beginning.
The House of Representatives Immigration Subcommittee held a different kind of H-1B hearing this morning — no employers were speaking and no one asked to increase the various ceilings on new admissions.David North's observation that nobody was asking for an increase in H-1B was very astute but he didn't seem to understand that the hidden agenda for the hearing was always to sow the seeds for a green card increase. I predicted that on Vdare.com the day before the hearing [Read here]. North commented that there were no employers that spoke at the hearing but that's because they hired lobbyists like Bruce Morrison and Bo Cooper to do their dirty work.
This despite the fact that the two numerical ceilings for new admissions this fiscal year (65,000 and 20,000) were filled months ago, both well before the September 30 deadline. House Holds Different Kind of H-1B Hearing — No Employers Present!, By David North, March 31, 2011
Brendan Kavanagh, a worker who was displaced by an H-1B, traveled to Washington DC at his own expense. He was interviewed by Thibodeau for Computerword magazine:
Kavanagh came to the U.S. from the United Kingdom on an L-1 visa some 16 years ago. He was transferred by his employer, a pharmaceutical company, to work on its technology in the U.S. Computerworld article by Patrick Thibodeau.Kavanagh's tragic story is best described by a 1996 quote from Richard Tax of the American Engineers Association: "Today's immigrant will be tommorow's victim."
Dr. Gene Nelson, Ph.D attended the hearing. He wrote a series of emails about what he observed. The following text is an edited version of Nelson's account. He gave me permission to use this material as well as the picture (above left—click to enlarge) that he took of Zoe Lofgren as she presided over the hearing.
I [Dr. Gene Nelson] attended the U.S. House of Representatives hearing on 31 March 2011 regarding criticisms of the employer-designed H-1B Visa program. I don't recall any of the questions or responses challenging the point of the underlying fraudulent claim that there is (or has been) a shortage of U.S. technical professionals. Rep. Steve King got close in noting that the current high level of worker importation at a time when over 20 million Americans are either unemployed or underemployed does not make sense for the national interest.The most important thing to note from both Thibodeau's article and the Nelson's commentary is that they heard Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) mention that she is in the final stages of introducing some type of instant green card legislation. All American workers, especially those in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) as well as health and education professions should consider this a RED LEVEL ALERT that something bad is brewing on the worker importation issue.
The key element of Rep. Lofgren's conduct was to ignore Neufeld and Hira and to pitch "softball" questions to her two friendly witnesses (Morrison and Cooper who are advocates of H-1B and instant green cards).
The typical convention that most of the witnesses adhered to was to limit their questions to 5 minutes. If a witness needed more time, they usually had the courtesy to ask the Chairman for permission to extend their question period by one minute. Not Zoe!
As the first questioner, Zoe went on for about 13 minutes asking questions of her witnesses. However, she was not content with her 13 minutes. She asked additional questions of her pair of friendly witnesses during the course of the approximately hour long question period. I do not think any other Committee member monopolized so much of the session.
I took a picture of Lofgren while I was sitting almost directly in front of her. I hope that you [Rob Sanchez] can include them in your blog [wish granted courtesy of Vdare]. As you might guess, either Neufeld or Hira was speaking at the time each photograph of Rep. Lofgren was taken.
I went Lofgren's chair after the hearing and to give her a handout. While I was waiting to speak to her, she was informing a reporter standing in front of me that she was putting the final touches on her proposed legislation which I infer would boost work visas and increase the "Green Card" cap. If that is what she intends to do it would be cruelly astounding to increase work visas and immigration at a time when the U-6 uemployment statistic is hovering around 15.7% (The U.S. workforce is currently 153,406,000, which means that 24.085 million people are unemployed or underemployed.)
I was talked afterwards with a representative of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE-USA), an organization that allegedly represents the interests of U.S. technical professionals. He seemed surprised by my noting that the numbers of people being trained were far in excess of a level that would allow Americans to work in a career for the number of years necessary to allow innovation.
I told the IEEE executive that high levels of H-1B importation is accelerating the death of meritocracy in STEM fields. For example, the invention and commercialization of Teflon(R) required over 3 decades of employment at DuPont for the American chemist Roy Plunkett (who first synthesized Teflon in 1938.) Jack Kilby, the inventor of the integrated circuit, had a long career with Texas Instruments.
The STEM workforce gluts (that are exacerbated by the present high level of immigration) inhibit innovation and commercialization in the U.S. by the truly gifted. With today's workforce gluts facilitating a "disposable worker" mentality, an American will be fortunate to have a STEM career lasting more than one decade.
I made this point in my 5 August 1999 U.S. House of Representatives testimony against expansion of the H-1B Visa program. I was a prize winning scientist early in my career. Since age 38, I have endured almost two decades of unemployment or underemployment. I'm currently searching for new employment.