Wednesday, July 6, 2011

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  • nojoke
    06-23 03:38 PM
    Here is one calculation that might give you one more reason to buy...

    This is taking into consideration bay area good school district ....


    say you are currently in a 2 bedroom paying around $1900 rent (say cupertino school district)

    you buy a townhome for around $500k putting down 20%
    so loan amount is 400k
    @ 5% instrest your annual intrest is $ 20k.
    Say 3k HOA anually...
    Property tax....as a rule of thumb, I believe (and have heard from others) whatever poperty tax you pay comes back as your mortgage intrest and property tax is deductable.
    So not taking property tax into account....your annual expense is 23k.

    now here is the nice part....
    you get 8k (or is it 7.5k ?) from FED for buying a house (first time buyer)

    If you get a real estate agent who is ready to give you 50% back on the comission you can get back around 7.5k (assuming the agent gets 3% comission)...I know those kind of agent exist for sure !!

    There is something I have heard about CA also giving you 10k for buying new homes...but I am not sure of this so will leave it out of the calculations...

    so total amount u get back....8k+ 7.5k = 15k approx..

    1st year expense = 23k
    1st year actual expense = 23-15 = 8 k

    which mean monthly rent = 8k/12 = $666 per month (it is like paying $666 rent for a 2 bedroom in cupertino school district)

    Will the property value go up ? I do not know (I wish I knew)...

    Is there a risk ? I would think yes....

    Percentage of risk ? I would think keeping in mind current prices the risk is low...

    I am not telling that you should buy or not buy....just provided one piece of the calculation....-;)

    All the best !

    All these calculations don't play out if the house price keeps dropping. It has gone down in value for the last couple of years. It will go down more until housing is affordable. Right now a million $ for a 3 bedroom in bay area is too much. It has to go down a lot and it will go down. So the question is not about rent vs owning cost. It is a question of how severe the housing price crash is going to be. One can convince themselves playing with numbers. But the fact is that the Alt-A loans are going to get hit in another year and all those shadow inventory that banks are hiding will be forced into the market eventually. By then these rent vs mortgage numbers would mean so little...





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  • Refugee_New
    01-06 02:32 PM
    Yes, they definitely have...Hamas should stop using school kids as human shield before complaining. Heres link for you - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elyXQ6g-TJs

    Gaza is a small town where more than 1.5 million people live there. Hamas is part and parcel of Gaza because they are elected by palestinian people and wherever they go, its full of people. Its a small land with crowded people. Gaza is like a crowded market.

    Again you are trying to justify the killing of innocent school kids and civilian. This is a big LIE constantly told by media to cover up the massacre. This is part of their divide and rule strategy. This Lie is something similar to WMD claim.

    Do you think Indian police will bomb the crowded street in order to kill a theif, then blame the theif that he is hiding behind civilian?





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  • chanduv23
    09-29 11:00 AM
    Obama presidency will be a positive experience or a negative, based on whether Sen. Obama chooses to show Leadership or panders to the extreme left-wing of his party.

    Obama has everything to gain from supporting the EB community. An example is the loyal following Pres. Clinton has developed with the Asian community through the passage of recapture in the American Competitiveness in the 21st Century Act. Passing pro-EB immigration bills will definitely create a pro-Obama community as he gets ready to run for the second term. Though these new Permanent Residents may not be having the vote, they can contribute generously to the Obama campaign legally.

    Obama campaign won't be able to bank on 'Hope and Change' for the second term. Contributors will be judging him based on what he has done for their community. As he faces the Republican money-machine these contributions from the grateful former-EB immigrants will create a safe avenue for funding.

    Helping EB immigrants will not hurt Obama with the labor unions and left-wing groups. Whatever be their gripes, they will not be voting Republican or contributing Republican for sure. Same cannot be said of EB immigrant community who can by and large go Republican, if they see Obama working to the detriment of their interests and the community. With Asian votes and more importantly being so crucial in NY/NJ and CA, If I were Obama I would think hard before supporting anything that can turn these communities against me, and my party for a long time given the uncertainties of politics. If past trends have been any indication EB immigrant community has always voted solidly Democratic. Last thing any sensible leader or party will do in democracy will be losing thousands of future voters likely to vote for them and/or their party.

    Obama can either create a lasting Legacy with this community.Or he can make them angry for life by pandering to the extreme left-wing of his party, who won't even remember the action come the next elections. I hope Obama makes a sensible choice for the greater good. But if the current Democratic party politics is any indication, I am skeptical. It is beyond my understanding why the Democratic party leadership is hell-bent on converting the pro-Democrat EB immigrant community into future reliable Republican voters, by consistently black-balling any bills that could help the community!

    Passing anti-EB immigrant measure will NOT help the Dems get any new votes that they already don't have. Dems may lose a few votes for short term -which I highly doubt - by passing Recapture and other pro-EB bills. But that loss will be more than offset by new grateful voters who will vote Democratic for a generation and may be more. I can only hope that common sense prevails, and Obama acts keeping the common interests of his party and EB immigrants in mind while acting on the issue, while getting ready to pack-up for Canada or India, if forced to do so by Sen. Durbins pet policies.

    In my opinion, Sen Durbin's stance on EB immigrants would be the cause of concern and like we all know Sen Durbin will make calls on these issues if Sen. Obama becomes the President. Lets see how it unfolds.





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  • jung.lee
    04-05 10:29 AM
    :eek:

    I have been reading this thread with a lot of interest and could not hold back from commenting on the unbridled optimism many of you guys are showing towards the housing market, which reminds me of the "long tailed" euphoria that followed long after the NASDAQ had crashed over 50% in 2001 after the tech bubble, and people kept wishing it would come back long after it became clear to most cynical observers that it would take decades to achieve the same levels as before (and it hasn't yet)...

    Housing has not yet bottomed. It still has a long way to go. You guys may think that the foreclosures related to subprime resets have subsided so the market may recover. You haven't seen anything yet. Consider:

    http://www.irvinehousingblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/04/loan-matrix.jpg

    and:

    http://www.irvinehousingblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/04/adjustable-rate-mortgage-reset-schedule.jpg

    Option ARMs (adjustable rate mortgages) and Alt-A ARMs are the next two shoes to drop. In case you've had your head buried in the sand, the economy is on verge of a collapse. Unemployment is soaring and many more companies are considering layoffs. Many economic observers are opining that we are already in recession.

    Desi junta, and others, I entreat you readers to please consider this seriously in your house purchase decisions. If for some reason you need to sell and move out, at a minimum you will be saving some money (by not losing your downpayment, for example) by choosing to rent. Rent a house/townhouse from a private owner if you are tired of renting an apartment and have growing kids - it's a "renters market" in the private rental marketplace right now with so many investment properties purchased during the housing bubble available for rent.

    I would like to offer up a few blogs, whose commentators should be taken seriously. I recommend you read and bookmark the following blogs if you want to follow the housing market and the economy:

    http://calculatedrisk.blogspot.com/

    http://www.irvinehousingblog.com/

    http://housingpanic.blogspot.com/

    http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/

    I like this website for people just starting out to get more financially educated (in an entertaining way):

    http://www.minyanville.com/

    Good luck and please be careful before 'taking the plunge!'



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  • sanju
    05-16 11:10 PM
    Infact pro immigrants and Corporations are arguing that shortage of skills and they are not displacing US workers. If that is true why cannot they accept the conditions that they will not displace US workers. If you accept that you do not mind replacing some american workers also then all of your points are valid. Then you can lobby for unlimited H1b and Unlimited greencards. You will never get American people support for that. But we all are lobbying based on the shortage of skills. So we should be ready to reduce H1b when demand goes down or accept the conditions for non displacement of US workers. Right now demand is more so US will absorb even 200K H1bs. But you need to look what happened between 2000 to 2003. So many layoffs. Part of reason was economy but other part was due to H1b and outsourcing


    The greater danger in life is not that we set our aims too high and fail, but we set them too low and still do – Michelangelo

    Your aim is to not get fired. You want to buy an insurance policy to a secure job as if you are the only one entitled to have a job. This is a lower aim so you are bound to fail i.e. lose your job.

    And how do you define “replacing some American workers”. There is a plant in Yuma, AZ manufacturing aircrafts for Kingfisher airlines in India. Doesn’t this mean that someone in India is being replaced by American worker???? Maybe we should stop all trade and we should have all needs of one country fill within its borders. Maybe we should say – from now on no one is going to do any business, collaboration, partnership and place orders to companies outside of the borders of the country where you live.


    Then you can lobby for unlimited H1b and Unlimited greencards.


    The best argument of restrictionist is either talk about no H-1B or green cards or talk about unlimited H-1Bs and green cards as if the extremes make the only reality in this world. Have you ever seen numbers like 290,000 or maybe 450,000. These are called whole numbers in mathematics and reside somewhere between ZERO and INFINITY/UNLIMITED.


    You will never get American people support for that.


    Stop bickering in the name of American people. More than 99% Americans don’t even know what is H-1B visa or employment based green card. And one more thing, people’s opinion is the most foolish thing to look at when making a decision. Do you remember the % of people in favor of Iraq war in 2002? - More than 70%
    Do you know how many people are in favor of pulling out of Iraq now, putting all the blame on the Administration? – around 70%
    Do you know the % of “American people” saying that they screwed up by supporting the war in 2002? – 0%
    No one would come out to say the nations and millions of people got screwed up due to "MY" twisted ideology in 2002. So let’s keep this argument of “American People” out of this debate.


    I will accept that 25 year old H1b from India can work 15 to 18 hours a day but same kind of productivity cannot get with 40 year old person with family of 2 kids whether Indian or American. Is it right to replace those person with 25 year old person. If that is the case then you will be replaced by youger H1b person in future.


    In free market and capitalist economy, the measure of productivity doesn’t come from some lawmaker who is out of sink with reality or from the ideology of orgs like IEEE-USA or from posters like you. The measure of productivity comes from the employers and the companies. If employees on H-1Bs were unproductive then why are employers asking for more H-1Bs. I am sure my employer is not in love with me to give me check every two weeks. And if that is how it works best for the competitiveness and for the economy, society and the nation, then so be it. That is the reason why this society is more advanced. You may be afraid of such a situations/competitions but I am not scared of a scenario where someone who can perform a better job, either a citizen or someone on H-1B, takes my job. And I assure you that I won't whine about it. But that is ok, your way of thinking is all based on the premises that every one out is going to get you and some how you have to eliminate this competition at the soonest.


    My view is clear. There should be H1b numbers based on demand and supply. If they cannot come with correct numbers then restriction of non displacement of US workers should be there.


    You have used the argument of abuse, productivity, economy, outsourcing, country of origin and the color of Dick Morris’ underwear - to argue against H-1B and against green card number increase. Time and again I have said that this is not about H-1B. We, the people on this forum, want to discuss about GREEN CARD BACKLOGS. But you want to keep the discussion away from green card backlog and want the discussion be in the arena of H-1B. I must share with you that I have received atleast 7 different private messages telling me to “not waste my time with idiot like yourself”.
    Like you ass, you keep your views and your opinions with yourself. Don’t poke your ass and your views into a place where they don’t belong. And please stop worrying about being displaced by someone else on H-1B. You have not even gotten green card and you have already turned into a restrictionist. Please wait for sometime and there will be enough time and opportunity for you to join the ranks of IEEE-USA. This makes me to think that there are 2 possibilities:
    1.) You have very low self esteem and you have a low opinion about yourself. Thus you are scared of the competition
    2.) You are not capable enough or you are not technically sound to compete with others around you. And just like IEEE-USA, you are looking for ways to eliminate your future probable competition using words/phrases like “displacement of US workers”.





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  • validIV
    06-25 02:26 PM
    Your second point of buying 3-4 homes with 20% down each and building equity on rent is the classic strategy to head into multiple foreclosures at once. This was the exact thinking that got so many real estate speculators in deep whole. Show me a single major city that has good amount of jobs (Bay area/Boston/Seattle) and where the monthly rent covers the monthly mortgage payment+property tax+home insurance. If that were the case all these homeowners would not be underwater, they would just give their houses on rent!

    I am not foreclosed and neither is anyone I know. Who do you know is foreclosed? Were they smart or stupid in their investment? How much did they put down? Did they crunch the numbers and do the math?

    You do not invest without a plan to cover all scenarios and you definitely do not invest beyond your means. The people that caused the meltdown and caused foreclosures couldnt afford the property to begin with. Is that you? Do you fit into that category? If so, do not buy.



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  • dealsnet
    01-07 10:52 PM
    See the link. Palestine TV teaches the kids to be a terrorist. Through micky mouse.
    Pathetic.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gi-c6lbFGC4&NR=1


    See this poor boy.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPU4UN03t7E&feature=related





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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-06 06:30 PM
    Wish I could think so quickly.

    A man boarded a plane with 6 kids. After they got settled in their seats a woman sitting across the aisle from him leaned over to him and asked,

    'Are all of those kids yours?'

    He replied, 'No. I work for a condom company. These are customer complaints.'



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  • kawosa
    12-25 09:26 AM
    We suffer due to the unfairness of a system that hinges upon the place of your birth! We demand that there be no quotas based on "country of birth" and that we ask for equitable treatment.
    Singling someone out due to his/her "national origin" should be something we backlogged EB2/3 I folks should understand more than others. And yet if someone from Pakistan gets a green card - we gang up on him and are outraged that someone from a terrorist country got it before us!!!! Does that mean we would be ok as long as he got it after us?
    I got plenty of red dots after my mere mention of the stupidity of ganging up on the fella... red dots are ok... it was the messages that came along with that were offensive - traitor , paki pork, etc - I just deleted my posts after that and stopped commenting on that particular thread.
    There is nothing wrong with discussing the history of India and Pakistan, nothing woring in discussing organized vs. unorganized religion, nothing wrong with pointing out the the flaws in Islam or any other religion - The problem is that such discussions always end up with insults hurled at each other. While we may start with the noble intention of having a civil discussion about these issues - every thread like this ends up with offensive remarks that drives people away. The simple question then becomes - is it worth it? Is this the place to do it? Would such a thread be allowed to continue on Ron Gotcher's website? I hope the moderators of this site realize that inaction on their part seems like they condone this type of behavior.
    All the red dots coming my way are more than welcome... just a small request about the insults .... please be brave enough to post them publicy!
    So let us now go back to solving all the controversial theological, anthropological and geopolitical issues. Let us continue to demand for fairness and an immigration system blind to our country of birth - but make sure we point out other people's national origin... no wonder the most anti-immigration people are generally the most recent immigrants.

    What a tiresome thread!!!

    Several years ago, people actually made an effort to make IV an organization representing all skilled workers, from all parts of the world. Now, immigration matters are totally irrelevant on the forums. Heck, forget about being an exclusively India focused forum, as this thread demonstrates, it is a venue to vent on matters even more narrowly focused - My religion, my sect, my opinion, my petty prejudices. If this is not irrelevant enough, we have enough threads on red dot-green dots to justify a whole separate category of forums :rolleyes:
    Anyway, it does a pretty good job of turning off people. I guarantee you this thread alone has contributed significantly in influencing many planning on attending the March rally to change their mind. It sure did mine.





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  • unitednations
    03-24 04:08 PM
    Your posts are arguably best on this forum. I have religiously read all your posts and will do in future. Your posts always make sense. I just wish we could get more insight and perspective from you. Great work. Keep them coming.

    What are your thoughts on h1bs/GC sponsored by universities. Do you forsee any problems with them? Also any insight on long time it takes for visa stamping?


    No problems with Universities. I was surprised to see how many h-1b's are actually held by universities.



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  • pappu
    08-11 03:10 PM
    toung is made of BS
    on a lighter note--
    He has BS (you know what that is) Degree in economics from harvard.


    seriously--
    Looking at his career he is quite a star.

    Louis Earl[1] Dobbs (born September 24, 1945) is the anchor and managing editor of CNN's hour-long weeknight program Lou Dobbs Tonight, an editorial columnist, and host of a syndicated radio show.

    Dobbs was born in Childress, Texas, raised in Rupert, Idaho, and resides in Sussex County, New Jersey.[1] He attended Minico High School in Rupert, serving as student body president in 1963. He later earned a degree in economics from Harvard University. He is married with children.


    Career

    Dobbs joined CNN when it launched in 1980, serving as its chief economics correspondent and as host of the business news program CBS News Sunday Morning on CBS. Dobbs also served as a corporate executive for CNN, as its executive vice president and as a member of CNN News Chief Iran Correspondent’s executive committee. He also founded CNN News (CNN financial news), serving as its president and anchoring the program, Business Unusual, which examined business creativity and leadership. In 1999, Dobbs started Space.com, a Web-based multimedia company dedicated to space education and entertainment.

    Dobbs left CNN in 2000, reportedly due to heated clashes with its president, Rick Kaplan, one of which actually occurred on-air when Kaplan suggested to cut from CNN News to a live address by Bill Clinton at Columbine, which Dobbs believed was a staged event and not newsworthy. [2] Dobbs returned the following year at the behest of his friend and CNN founder Ted Turner, becoming host and managing editor of the new and initially more general news program Lou Dobbs Reporting, which later became CNN News Sunday Morning. Dobbs also hosts a nationally syndicated radio show, The Lou Dobbs Financial Report, and he is a regular columnist in Money magazine, U.S. News & World Report and the New York Daily News.


    Political positions

    In the 2000s, Dobbs has used CNN programs and columns to express strong personal views on several subjects. He has become particularly noted for two positions. Concerning international trade, he leans toward protectionism and is particularly wary of outsourcing and offshoring in light of the increasing US trade deficit, particularly with China. He also is opposed to a North American union.

    Dobbs is strongly opposed to illegal immigration, immigration amnesty, abuses of the H-1B visa program[3] and guest worker programs.[4] He supports stringent enforcement at U.S. borders, whether by federal or state action, or by private groups like the controversial Minuteman Project. Dobbs often has stated the United States is becoming balkanized and immigrants and/or illegal aliens are refusing to assimilate. He has been critical of their demonstrations of ethnic or national pride, stating, "I don't think that we should have any flag flying in this country except the flag of the United States", and "I don't think there should be a St. Patrick's Day. I don't care who you are. I think we ought to be celebrating what is common about this country, what we enjoy as similarities as people." He has been accused of inciting xenophobia by some such as Libertarian journalist James K. Glassman of the American Enterprise Institute[5].

    Lou Dobbs Tonight frequently features related issues under the ongoing billboards "Exporting America" and "Broken Borders". The newscast often couples references to illegal aliens with the word "invasion". Dobbs dismisses the allegedly excessive or misguided concern for language as "political correctness" in the segment billboarded "P.C. Nation".

    Dobbs' stance on trade has earned plaudits from some trade union activists, on the traditional political left, while his stance on immigration tends to appeal to the right. Dobbs is a self-described "lifelong Republican" [6] who has become disenchanted with the policies of George W. Bush's administration.

    In his "Broken Borders" segments Dobbs focuses primarily on the southern border with Mexico and the drugs and illegal aliens that cross it. Critics claim this is unfair because the 5000-mile border between Canada and the United States is longer and also permeable. On the other hand, proponents note the vast majority of illegal aliens and drugs pass into the United States via the Mexican border and that he has in fact had some segments dealing with the lack of security along the US-Canada border. As of the end of May 2006; some 829,109 illegal immigrants had been apprehended crossing from Mexico into the U.S.A. this year. Illegal Immigrants apprehended crossing from Canada to the U.S.A. are a tiny fraction of that amount -- 4,066. [7][8] Dobbs apparently also has lauded the Canadian government for cooperation in securing the border with their American counterparts.

    In June 2006, as the U.S. Senate debates the Federal Marriage Amendment, Dobbs was highly critical of the action. He asserted that so-called traditional marriage was threatened more by financial crises perpetuated by Bush administration economic policy than by gay marriage. [9]

    In July 2006, Dobbs criticized U.S. foreign policy as being disproportionately supportive of Israel, pointing out the U.S.'s rapid recognition of Israel in 1948, foreign aid to Israel, and other policy choices in the past and present. [10]


    Awards

    Dobbs has won numerous major awards for his television journalism, most notably a Lifetime Achievement Emmy Award, and a Cable Ace award. He received the George Foster Peabody Award for his coverage of the 1987 stock market crash. He also has received the Luminary Award of the Business Journalism Review in 1990, the Horatio Alger Association Award for Distinguished Americans in 1999 and the National Space Club Media Award in 2000. The Wall Street Journal has named Dobbs "TV's Premier Business News Anchorman". Dobbs even was named "Father of the Year" by the National Father's Day Committee in 1993.


    Associations

    Dobbs serves or has served on the boards of the Society of Professional Journalists Foundation, the Horatio Alger Association, the National Space Foundation and the Imaginova Corporation, formerly known as Space.com, in which he owns a minority stake, as he does in Integrity Bank. He is a member of the Planetary Society, the Overseas Press Club and the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.


    Books

    * Exporting America : Why Corporate Greed Is Shipping American Jobs Overseas (Warner Business Books, 2004) ISBN 0446577448
    * Space: The Next Business Frontier by Dobbs and HP Newquist (Atria, 2001) ISBN 0743423895





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  • nitkad
    04-15 02:05 PM
    I am on H1B and I485 is pending. I just bought a mid-price house and I will recommend to buy only if your I140 is approved. I waited for many years but finally bought one. Buying the house was a big decision but I am glad that I took it. I have a 3 year old daughter and she being able to run in our own backyard is worh of some financial risk. The house prices are lower (still I think a little higher than it should be) and the interest rate is good too. So, go for it and good luck.



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  • kshitijnt
    09-26 07:53 PM
    Well I tend to go by the facts:

    Bill Clinton was good for immigration , everyone was happy in his days

    Eversince GW Bush took over, the USCIS has been consistently hitting below the belt to immigrant communities , right from Sep-11-2001. Not one thing was done for overall improvement in GC process. By this I mean congressional laws.

    Another reason I worry about is that McCains advisors are in favor of H1 visa. At no point they mention that they will also support GCs for EB immigrants. This means if he comes to power, there will be high influx of H1Bs without anyone gettting GCs. This seems to be worse than what Obama is planning to do. Maybe a few of us will have to leave in Obamas policy but those who remain here will be better placed. Under McCains policy, there will be a huge pressure on wages by H1B competing against other H1B while there is no reform in GC process. These ladies Carly Fiorina, Meg Whitman are big time in favor of H1 visa so as "to bring down salaries" and so that "they' can make more money. This is their only rationale in supporting H1s. I am not against H1s but the GC process also needs to be fixed. If GC process is not fixed more H1s is not only detrimental to us but also to the newcomers.

    Also when we try to get HR5882, the people like Steve King and Lamar Smith come from republican party. McCain is less likely to have any leverage on these individuals even if he comes to power. All of a sudden they can not change their stance on immigration. Another senator in the same bucket is Jeff Sessions.

    You guys tell me, should we be more worried about Jeff Sessions and Steve King or Dick Durbin? It seems that Dick Durbin is picking on Indian offshoring companies but nothing to indicate that he is against immigration in general.





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  • Macaca
    12-26 08:37 AM
    Freshmen Padding Their Independence (http://http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/12/25/AR2007122500994.html?hpid=sec-politics) Procedural Votes Become Safe Nays By Paul Kane | Washington Post, Dec 26, 2007

    Half a dozen freshman Democrats took to the House floor one late-October morning to cast their lot with Republicans.

    Their actions went unpunished by the Democratic leadership that day, as they have on many other occasions in recent weeks. The symbolic gesture -- casting nay votes on approving the House Journal, essentially the minutes of the previous day -- would have no bearing on the leadership's agenda.

    While they overwhelmingly support that agenda, the bloc of freshmen has begun casting votes against such minor procedural motions in an effort, Democratic sources and Republican critics say, to demonstrate their independence from their leadership. The number of votes that the potentially vulnerable newcomers to Capitol Hill cast against House leaders is tallied and watched closely by interest groups and political foes.

    Such is the political life of many of the 42 freshman House Democrats, a sizable number of them moderates and conservatives who must straddle the fence between supporting their party's interests and distancing themselves from a mostly liberal leadership as they gear up for their first reelection battle next fall.

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and other members of the party's leadership are happy to tolerate the independence on procedural matters. Less than three hours after opposing the late-October journal vote, the same six freshmen sided with Pelosi as Democrats tried, and failed, to override President Bush's veto of a bill to expand the State Children's Health Insurance Program by $35 billion over five years, legislation that Pelosi has called her "crown jewel."

    "I'm viewed as an independent. I'm viewed as a conservative Democrat," said Rep. Jason Altmire (Pa.), the first freshman to regularly oppose his party's leadership on the journal vote.

    Like several others, Altmire offered no explanation for voting against all but one of 18 roll calls on the routine measure, adding that he had no "pre-planned" rationale for the votes. "I'm certainly not going to win or lose my reelection based on my journal votes," he said.

    But the first reelection campaign in his conservative-leaning western Pennsylvania district could be a tough one. Bush won there by a comfortable nine percentage points in 2004. Districts such as Altmire's fueled the Democratic takeover of the House last year. They are blue-collar in attitude and red-hued in politics, particularly on issues such as abortion and gun rights.

    Dubbed the "majority makers" by Pelosi's leadership team, the freshmen have become a major front in the Democrats' battle to sustain and expand their majority next fall.

    Stuart Rothenberg, an independent analyst and author of the Rothenberg Political Report, said Republican hopes for shrinking the Democratic majority begin with what he calls "snapback candidates," who rode into office under the last election cycle's optimal conditions for Democrats and now face their first reelection contests.

    Protecting the 42 freshman Democrats, the largest partisan class since 73 Republicans took office in 1994, has been the top priority for key Democratic strategists such as Rep. Rahm Emanuel (Ill.). The freshmen get special treatment from leaders, including a weekly meeting with Pelosi and Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (Md.). And they receive frequent advice on how to vote from Emanuel and Rep. Chris Van Hollen (Md.), chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

    Seven of the rookies have more than $1 million in cash on hand, and according to Rothenberg, more than half are in safe positions to win reelection. In addition, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee holds a more than 11-to-1 cash advantage over its Republican counterpart, a potential financial backstop for endangered freshmen.

    But the political environment has turned toxic in recent months as Democrats have been stymied in their effort to take Congress in their self-proclaimed new direction. Opinion polls show public approval ratings for Congress mired in the 20s, considerably lower than Bush's rating.

    In recent months, Democrats in battleground districts have been criticized by Republicans, who have tried to paint them as close to the new House leadership.

    "While these Democrats might claim to be independent voices for their districts, the differences between them and Nancy Pelosi are purely aesthetic," said Ken Spain, spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee. This year, the GOP committee launched a Web site to track the percentage of votes that 28 of the freshmen cast with Pelosi, whom Republicans say will be a polarizing figure in conservative districts next fall.

    That is why procedural votes are important to freshmen, according to Democratic aides. House Republicans this year turned to a procedure known as a "motion to recommit," offering what is typically a routine method of sending bills back to committee as politically charged amendments. With a wink and a nod from Emanuel and Hoyer, some endangered freshmen frequently vote with Republicans on tricky GOP motions to keep their votes from being used against them in 30-second campaign sound bites.

    Some freshman Democrats have taken the idea of voting against their party leadership on procedural votes one step further, opposing mundane matters such as the journal vote.

    Altmire has sided with the opposition in 17 of 18 journal roll calls this year. Rep. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) has cast 15 votes with the GOP. In the spring, only a few freshmen voted against the journal, but one recent vote drew 13 freshmen in opposition, and in another, 11 voted nay. Now a half-dozen or more regularly oppose whenever a roll call is held.

    Democratic leaders acknowledge that they have encouraged the freshmen to sometimes vote with Republicans on politically difficult issues, but deny that they have had any input on the Congressional Record votes.

    "We've given them very simple advice: Make sure you vote your district," Van Hollen said.

    As a result, Rep. Heath Shuler (D-N.C.), for example, has one of the lowest party-unity voting scores -- less than 84 percent -- of any House Democrat, according to washingtonpost.com's congressional database. The average House Democrat has voted with the majority on 92.5 percent of all votes.

    "They're trying to create separation. Our guys did it in '95 and '96," said Rep. Thomas M. Davis III (R-Va.), a member of the GOP class of 1994.

    At the time, freshman Republicans saw congressional popularity plummet during a budget fight that led to a series of federal government shutdowns. Fearful of being tied closely to then-Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.), many freshmen also began voting no on the journal in a similar effort to distance themselves.



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  • ssa
    06-25 03:19 PM
    And according to your theory, renting is a better investment? Throwing your money away is a good investment to you? Then I don't think we are on the same page.

    If your monthly rent is less than your mortgage and you do not believe the house price is going to appreciate in near term (both true in the area I live in) then renting is NOT throwing money away. Don't borrow lines from realtors. If you pay more for living in a comparable house and your house is not appreciating what's the return on your money that you are paying extra?





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  • go_guy123
    07-28 03:29 PM
    Atleast republicans listen to Microsoft, Google etc and gives some visa etc...AllObama does is warn about Indians and Chinese growth

    You are right... dealing with Republicans is easier ....they listen to American Chamber of Commerce, ITAA et al. When Tom Delay was incharge....it was straight forward. you fund GOP, we will look after you.

    GOP taps the cash of industry...and leverages the anger of extreme right (mainly against illegal immigrants, gays and anti-gun/anti-god issues) Works good for skilled immigrants.

    Yes there are nuts like...Tom Tancredo but GOP whips takes care of those (Note: GOP is a party that demands loyalty. Had it being the GOP, they would have extarcted revenge from Joe Liberman for disloyaty). It is the democratic paty that has historically faced infighting.
    Since 1994 it was the GOP in charge and thats also a reason H1B got the AC21 etc.



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  • hpandey
    06-27 12:01 AM
    Pandey ji / Valid IV
    o.k..I will explain it slowly ..I can understand that those who are homeowners will justify their home purchase. some maybe in denial and have their head in sand.
    honestly, few months back, even I would have purchased a house . if I had, I would still admit -- that home is not necessarily good investment but a place to stay. even after I buy, I would still say that renting in an apartment has its advantages. here are 2 links in english.
    Why rent? To get richer - MSN Money (http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com/Banking/HomebuyingGuide/WhyRentToGetRicher.aspx)
    Why Your Mortgage Won't Make You Rich - WSJ.com (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124352291846962809.html)
    --------------
    now you need to read this carefully else you won't understand what the authors are trying to say ..since it is bit unclear but it has good points (not trying to make fun here :)) ..do read since they are superb articles
    but here is even simpler explanation and hopefully that will explain what I am trying to say ..if you still don't understand ..u will need to find someone else to explain.
    first renting gives you flexibility ...so say, u get better job offer or lose job - you don't lose lot of money compared to house if you have to move.
    for 250K house, you pay around 300 property tax, 60 HOA fees, 150 - 200 in maintenance (recurring like lawn plus once in long term like roof, painting etc) , 100 - 150 extra in utilities. you pay downpayment of 50 k ..if you were to invest that money in better investments (mutual funds, stocks, high CDs. bonds) ..you would make 250 - 300 per month. plus add fees when you have to sell the house, insurance, termite protection etc etc ..
    plus in many cases, you end up buying a house further away than if you were to rent (since many want brand new house ) ..this means extra 250 - 300 in gas + vehicle degradation per month.
    (ALSO SAY U WERE IN MICHIGAN OR IN CALIFORtNIA -- you could get away from the state after making money easily if you were renting. .home means you could end up stuck there).

    I agree in apartment you get less space and hence I mentioned - u need to ask - do you really need extra space at this time in life - if yes, then home is better. (but renting a home is even better esp if prices are still falling in your area in this case).
    btw - as of now rents are going down -- you just need to negotiate.
    now you don't get the money back in rents..but neither do you get money paid in the expenses listed above.
    (in other words - you don't get money back that you pay in rent yr apt BUT you get a place to stay ..this is not India where you can sleep on foot path - so you need a place. apartment property owner will make a small profit - but that is the system)

    before you jump - house is good when it appreciates by atleast 1 -2 percent above inflation and I am not saying that you should never buy a house.
    there are many other points and I will post it in IV WIKI ...and I hope this helps newcomers ...this is my last personal post ...and do watch the movie :) ..once again I did mention in plain english that it is worst case scenario (the movie "pacific heights")..but best case scenario is not good either if you are a landlord with property in US while you are in India (or vice versa).

    hope that answers your question ..please note: the above is for normal cases ..but if you get a good deal or short sale or foreclosed home for 50K --- then yes, buying makes sense !!

    Thank you Mr. Hiralal for your condensending post . Your trying to explain it slowly will not make your argument strong.

    I am not trying to justify my homeownership to you or anyone else here. I am just presenting the real facts that apply to my case. I did not buy a house to get rich neither would I become rich if I rented.

    I bought a house only a few months back and not in the real estate bubble time. I have paid a good price for it and my mortage is the same as my rent . The house has four times the area of the apartment I used to rent and is in a very very good area . So why should I go on renting.

    Anyway my primary reason to buy was for my 2 year old who ( and my family ) need more space to live rather than a cramped two bedroom apartment. I don't know about you but I have spent 9 years in this country . GC is no where in sight. Waiting for GC and wasting valuable years of your life living in a rented accomodation don't make sense to me when you can get a nice big house for your family at a very good price and low mortgage .

    Maybe you believe all these media articles but these are written for a broad view.

    Everyone is unique and every situation is unique. There are a lot of places in US where the prices did not fall that much and there are some place where they are in fact rising now .

    Mortgage rates are low now as are the home prices after correction but what about mortgage rates two years from now ? I can't predict if the home prices will go down or not since that depends on the location but I can say this for sure that mortgage rates will go up .

    Homeowners like me don't have our heads stuck in the sand as you say - I spent a good two years 2007 and 2008 making calulations , waiting for the right time and finding a good valued house at a good mortgage rate.

    We are not as stupid as you think.

    Thank you .





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  • unitednations
    03-25 06:59 PM
    I am trying to upload a pdf file but keep getting error message.

    temporaryjob140denial.pdf:
    Upload of file failed.

    It is way below the size limit posted for pdf file.

    any ideas?





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  • unitednations
    03-25 01:11 PM
    UN I think you are hyping up the current situation too much.

    Yes there are raids and arrests,

    But it is not so bad. You are saying as if everyone in consulting is getting denied. If it was so bad, all immigration forums would have been filled up with denial posts and cries for help. Maybe you have encountered people who only faced denials and not the entire spectrum. Thus your judgement may be influenced.

    I'm not one of those alarmists because many "people can't sleep" when they have immigration issues.

    Howeve; I very rarely give very specific examples, or post the RFE;s, denials because USCIS/DOL do go around and peruse the internet looking for information.

    Within IV there is a number of postings of h-1b denials.

    You will see plenty more. If a company responds to the rfe with a middle man purchase order; denial will come quickly; if purchase order is in different location of LCA (LCA has to be certified covering the work location prior to filing of h-1b) then verry quick denial.

    However; in most other cases it is taking vermont service center long tim to send rfe and then long time to deny after response to rfe.

    Check out greg siskind blog; where he reported another lawyer got internal memo of how to scrutiinize h-1b's for staffing compoanies; check matthew oh blog from last year when he reported massive rfe's coming fom vermont service center.

    I don't take things lightly. I'm pretty plugged in as to what is going on. I started discussing this last year and told peopl with extensions that they better file it early just to preserve more options if something should go wrong.

    check around with your companies, friends, etc.





    Refugee_New
    01-06 05:24 PM
    What would be the purpose of reading all that? I thought the spotlight was on hamas...this is how you try to move the spotlight away huh!!

    My point is, they keep the spotlight on Hamas and go kill as many innocent civilians as possible.

    Even when they kill school kids, we still blame Hamas. We don't blame the killer and try to stop their mad actions. Thats my point.





    Munna Bhai
    07-09 05:06 AM
    We won`t get any letter from that comapany as my husband din`t exit in good terms.(Ofcourse if they won`t pay him for months).
    I do believe in our case the reasons are more to do with the officer dealing the case than with actual technical issues.
    In the NOID they said the reason mainly was( he changed from company A to B to C but when he reentered he entered on B instead of C .at that time was not very knowledgeable about all this stuff)he reentry was not legal and was willful misrepresentaton of facts.
    Then our lawyer in our reply sent that as long as both visas are still valid it is legal.Then now they state ok his reentry is not wrong only the paystubs part is wrong and stating he never worked for that company chose to deny.

    Your case is doable, get hold of some good attorney and tell them all the fact and as long as employer-employee relationship exist, you are on valid H1b. Hence since your Husband was without paystub but his I-94 was valid,it should not create much problem.

    But do get intouch with old company.



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