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Trump Gives Displaced IT Workers Attention, and He's Not Alone (computerworld.com) 688

dcblogs writes: The H-1B visa issue is getting more attention than it has ever received before. Donald Trump has invited laid-off Disney workers to speak at his rallies, and has posed in photos with them. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), held a press conference this week to complain that visa workers are being hired instead of U.S. workers. Legislation to reform the visa program has been introduced, and discrimination complaints are being filed with federal agencies and in the courts. But these efforts may have little impact. If visa restrictions arrive, IT services firms may increase reliance on web-based "knowledge transfer" to avoid having visa workers at an employer's site. There have also been reports of U.S. workers traveling overseas to train replacements on foreign soil. [Even with all the political and legal efforts,] there's no certainty any action will derail the forces moving IT jobs overseas.
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Trump Gives Displaced IT Workers Attention, and He's Not Alone

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  • wonder why (Score:5, Insightful)

    by turkeydance ( 1266624 ) on Thursday March 24, 2016 @08:23PM (#51773215)
    he leads?
    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 24, 2016 @08:28PM (#51773233)

      This is racist and sexist. I dont know how yet, I'll wait for Huff po. to tell me how, but rest assured it is somehow.

      • Re: wonder why (Score:5, Insightful)

        by kheldan ( 1460303 ) on Friday March 25, 2016 @12:13PM (#51776497) Journal
        I have no idea if it's 'racist or sexist' and really don't care, but I do know this: Trump doesn't give a damn about these IT workers, he's just doing this as a publicity stunt. Trump is part of the 1% one way or another, and as such he'll look out for the rest of the 1%, and to hell with the 99% (which includes these displaced IT workers). It's all smoke and mirrors and bullshit.
    • He leads because:

      1) For some bizarre reason, people think he cares about them.
      2) For some bizarre reason, people think he isn't lying out his ass just to win a game.
      3) For some bizarre reason, people think the office of the President is somehow enabled to achieve Trump's lies.
      4) To paraphrase Einstein, "People are Fucking Stupid."

  • Globalization (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Etherwalk ( 681268 ) on Thursday March 24, 2016 @08:30PM (#51773243)

    It turns out that lowering barriers to commerce increases competition.

    This helps the guy who is buying the goods and services. Which mostly means whoever owns the company that uses or re-sells those services. It helps the 1% because they own the companies which profit by, for example, employing IT workers. It occasionally helps normal people, if the companies that are reselling or using the services are in tight competition, but mostly it helps the 1%--or in this case, the owners of Disney stock.

    It hurts the guy who is selling the goods and services, at least in the markets with strong demand. That's why American Industry and the remaining small farms mostly disappeared--you could buy the stuff cheaper elsewhere, so people did. On the other hand, you can probably buy cheaper random-thing-X, so long as there is still competition among foreigners after the American producer went out of business.

    • Re:Globalization (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Black Parrot ( 19622 ) on Thursday March 24, 2016 @08:42PM (#51773275)

      Yeah, the free trade agreements were supposed to let us get our toys cheap. Instead, the prices kept going up, the quality went to shit, jobs are gone, and wages are stagnant. The only people to benefit are the middle-men who buy cheap, sell dear, and pocket the difference.

      And it's naive to think the politicos will balk at destroying the domestic IT sector, after destroying everything else.

      • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

        The easy solution to fix many problems. All government spending must be localised, no tax payer dollars, not one cent to be spent on imported products or services, directly or indirectly. This maintains and protects a production base to build on. This is a fair and reasonable demand by tax payers, you take the money from tax payers, than it is only fair that the money you take is spent on tax payers. To many international corporations are cheating all over the place.

        • All government spending must be localised, no tax payer dollars, not one cent to be spent on imported products or services, directly or indirectly.

          So how would government buy their computer systems? Are there computer systems make 100% in the US - meaning every chip and component comes from the United States and is assembled here?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by phantomfive ( 622387 )

      It helps the 1% because they own the companies which profit by, for example, employing IT workers. It occasionally helps normal people, if the companies that are reselling or using the services are in tight competition, but mostly it helps the 1%--or in this case, the owners of Disney stock.

      For people in the US it's been uneven, but for these people it's been a huge success [static-economist.com]. I'm ok with that.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      From America's leaders' perspectives:

      Motivation to keep IT work in the USA:

      1) Keep the US a competitive world power by retaining talent that is valuable in the current and future world market.
      2) Keep local voters happy by giving them jobs.

      Neither motivation is very strong. IT technicians represent a small voting demographic, so no political career benefits from pandering to them. USA's position in the world market is better maintained by forcing draconian copyright law on all other countries, so that Amer

  • by creimer ( 824291 ) on Thursday March 24, 2016 @08:44PM (#51773287) Homepage

    If visa restrictions arrive, IT services firms may increase reliance on web-based "knowledge transfer" to avoid having visa workers at an employer's site.

    If a computer need to be re-image, the user will have to FedEx the computer to India, wait three months for the computer to return, and find their PST file missing from Outlook. That should save a lot of money.

    • by Hentes ( 2461350 )

      No, your computer will already be in India and you will access it through the cloud.

  • There are plenty of knowledge workers available. They're just not available at the wage slave mirage prices that corporate bean counters think they're getting.

    If you cut off the supply of low cost imported labor, the market will adjust. Sure, some firms will just move offshore. That's cool. Some firms will pay more to fill spots from the legally available pool. That's cool too. And other firms will look for loopholes to fit somewhere in between. Those loopholes will vary in size between a needle and the Lincoln Tunnel depending on how aggressive the graft money flows into Congress.

    Cut off the supply and let the chips fall where they may. The end result may be a boom in tech businesses that choose to do business where these cheap labor pools are available. Who knows....

    • by creimer ( 824291 ) on Thursday March 24, 2016 @08:58PM (#51773349) Homepage

      The end result may be a boom in tech businesses that choose to do business where these cheap labor pools are available.

      Like manufacturing jobs returning the US because China is getting too expensive?

      But despite what the rhetoric would have us believe, global manufacturing is trending in a positive direction for the U.S. Factory jobs are on the rise here, and many of these new jobs are coming back to North America from China, which is struggling to maintain its manufacturing capacity. Since March, 2010, when manufacturing employment in the U.S. hit a trough of 11.45 million jobs, nearly a million new factory positions have been created, most of them in the Southern states, particularly North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. Better still, the jobs are typically good ones: across that same five-year period, average hourly manufacturing wages have increased over ten per cent, to more than twenty dollars. On the whole, U.S. manufacturing, as measured by the Purchasing Managers' Index, has steadily expanded.

      http://www.newyorker.com/business/currency/why-donald-trump-is-wrong-about-manufacturing-jobs-and-china [newyorker.com]

      • Very few manufactures of complex products take a raw material and produce a finished item. Many rely on parts made from other manufacturers, preferably locally so that rapid feedback can occur during the design and early production stages. If you lose a lot of parts of the local manufacturing "ecosystem" then the "apex manufacturers" are not viable and would cope better elsewhere.
        So once you lose the manufacturing capability that has built up over decades it is very hard to get it back. Extra expense ove
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      Good thoughts.. the key is that the firms that move offshore should not get free access to the American market. If I make an iPhone app, I have to pay Apple for the right to sell it in their app store. The same should be for companies moving offshore. They can still do business in the US but they have to pay generous taxes for the right to do so. Otherwise they can just give unfair competition to businesses that would otherwise start in the US and sell in the US.
  • by SixHourPostingLimit ( 4513887 ) on Thursday March 24, 2016 @08:47PM (#51773311)

    I wonder what all those currently hysterical people screaming about Trump being a Nazi and how all of tech is a sexist, bigoted, cesspit of male nerd privilege will do if Trump is actually elected on the back of the massive surge of US voter discontentment?

    My guess is that the Hipsters will have their beards shaved off within 8 months and the 3 piece suit (and Trumplocked hair) will make a comeback likes it's nineteen-eighty-yuppie all over again. A word to the wise gentlement, the geeks, techies, and especially the gamers to have been on the receiving end of your bullshit all have memories like fucking elephants, so don't expect a medal for a change of heart.

    If Hillary becomes president, I think our next election will end up being between Hilter and Mao.

  • ... through his modeling agency (Trump Model Management). From CNN (http://money.cnn.com/2016/03/10/news/trump-model-visas/)-

    "Government data analyzed by Howard University professor Ron Hira shows that since 2008, Trump's agency has successfully brought over around 30 foreign models -- from countries like Brazil, Latvia and China -- using the H-1B program."

    Seems a bit disingenuous to be courting the disgruntled in one industry while creating them in another.

  • If they can. It's not cheap to employ an h1-b. There's a reason they want the worker in the country. Underemployment is a huge (yuge?) problem here with lots of Americans stuck in dead end temp work. If you want the benefits of doing business in America then you hire Americans. Seems reasonable to me.
    • Kinda my take on it too. If they want to offshore work, then offshore it and deal with the accompanying barriers to getting stuff accomplished. Otherwise, hire people here and treat them fairly. Note that unlike H1Bs, if they don't treat them fairly, they're free to move on. What they can't have is the indentured, underpaid, but physically present H1B worker who doesn't dare speak up because they know they have a sword of Damocles in the form of a one way economy flight ticket to Bangalore hanging over them

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