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  • NKR
    08-06 03:15 PM
    speaking of DOTs..how do you give Dots?

    Send a PM to soni and ask, he/she gave me one.





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  • vroapp
    04-12 03:05 PM
    agree.





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  • texanmom
    09-27 05:21 PM
    After 8 yrs of Bush, I sure am ready for Democrats to take over. America needs a change. But Sen. Obama's victory will surely spell doom and gloom for the EB community - of which I am one.

    I have been in the United States for 9 years - LEGALLY. I have bent over backwards to follow the letter of the law, irrespective of how convoluted it is. My kids are American Citizens. I pay taxes and contribute to the American economy. We even bought a house here in the hope that we can settle down in America. Me and my husband hold executive level positions in major multinationals. Here is the absolute kicker - I work in Satellite Telecommunications and my company supports the United States Government (DoD) and its contractors/ sub contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan!!

    We wanted Democrats to win...but guess what - the failed CIR 2007 woke us up to the fact that Sen. Durbin will never make it easy for us EB immigrants. His hostility towards this community forced us to secure the Canadian PR. We have a little bit more time to decide when we want to move there before our PR expires. If things don't take a turn for the better on the Immigration front, we will move to Canada. I just dread having to sell the house here though!!

    Till date, I only see Durbin driving immigration - and it is definitely against teh EB community. My question to Sen.Obama - what do you have to offer to us, the highly skilled immigrants? Would you rather we just liquidate all our assets (home, stocks, bonds, vehicles, etc) here in America and take it with us to another country that is more welcoming???





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  • khelanphelan
    05-24 12:11 PM
    Did the brownback amendment pass with the CIR?



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  • Macaca
    12-27 12:34 PM
    The following appeared in NYT yesterday. It was discussed by Pat Buchanan (hosting Tucker Carlson's show on MSNBC) last evening. Pat was surprised that Demz were considering it.

    It is available here http://www.nytimes.com/2006/12/26/washington/26immig.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

    WASHINGTON, Dec. 25 � Counting on the support of the new Democratic majority in Congress, Democratic lawmakers and their Republican allies are working on measures that could place millions of illegal immigrants on a more direct path to citizenship than would a bill that the Senate passed in the spring.

    The lawmakers are considering abandoning a requirement in the Senate bill that would compel several million illegal immigrants to leave the United States before becoming eligible to apply for citizenship.

    The lawmakers are also considering denying financing for 700 miles of fencing along the border with Mexico, a law championed by Republicans that passed with significant Democratic support.

    Details of the bill, which would be introduced early next year, are being drafted. The lawmakers, who hope for bipartisan support, will almost certainly face pressure to compromise on the issues from some Republicans and conservative Democrats.

    Still, the proposals reflect significant shifts since the November elections, as well as critical support from the Homeland Security Department.

    Proponents said the prospects for such a measure, which would include tougher border security and a guest worker plan, had markedly improved since Nov. 7.

    The Senate plans to introduce its immigration bill next month with an eye toward passage in March or April, officials said. The House is expected to consider its version later. President Bush said last week that he hoped to sign an immigration bill next year.

    The major lawmakers drafting the legislation include Senators Edward M. Kennedy, Democrat of Massachusetts, and John McCain, Republican of Arizona, along with Representatives Jeff Flake, Republican of Arizona, and Luis V. Gutierrez, Democrat of Illinois. The four met this month, and their staffs have begun working on a bill.

    �I�m very hopeful about this, both in terms of the substance and the politics of it,� said Mr. Kennedy, the incoming chairman of the Senate Immigration, Border Security and Citizenship Subcommittee.

    Mr. Kennedy acknowledged that there would be hurdles. But he and other lawmakers say Republicans and Democrats are now more likely to work together to repair a system widely considered as broken.

    House Republicans blocked consideration of the bill that passed the Senate this year, saying it amounted to an amnesty for lawbreakers and voicing confidence that a tough stance would touch off a groundswell of support in the Congressional elections. The strategy largely failed.

    Hispanic voters, a swing constituency that Republicans covet, abandoned the party in large numbers. Several Republican hardliners, including Representatives John Hostettler of Indiana and J. D. Hayworth of Arizona, lost their seats. After the dismal showing, House Republicans denied F. James Sensenbrenner Jr. of Wisconsin, the departing chairman of the Judiciary Committee and an architect of the House immigration approach, a senior position on any major committee in the new Congress.

    Domestic security officials have voiced support for important elements of the framework under consideration. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff has repeatedly raised doubts about the effectiveness of border fencing in remote desert areas. Mr. Bush signed the fence bill this year, but Congress did not appropriate enough money for it. Officials say they would also prefer a less burdensome process than the original Senate bill outlined.

    That bill divided the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants into three groups, those living here for five years or more, those here for two to five years and those here for less than two years.

    All but the illegal immigrants living here for five years or more, roughly seven million, would have to leave the country briefly to be eligible for legal status. Those here for fewer than two years would have to leave the country and would not even be guaranteed a slot in a guest worker plan.

    Domestic security officials said the original plan would have been enormously difficult to administer because many illegal immigrants lacked documentation to prove how long they had been in the United States.

    The officials said it would have fueled a market in fraudulent documents as illegal immigrants scrambled to offer proof of residency.

    The three-tiered approach would also discourage millions of illegal immigrants from registering, driving millions deeper underground.

    �We do have concerns over breaking it down into that tiered system,� said a domestic security official who insisted on anonymity. �When you do that, you run the risk of people trying to create false documentation that would get them the highest benefits.�

    Also expected to have prominent roles in the debate are Representatives Zoe Lofgren, the California Democrat who is likely to head the House Immigration, Border Security and Claims Subcommittee; Howard L. Berman, a California Democrat who has followed immigration issues closely for many years; and Bennie Thompson, the Mississippi Democrat who is set to lead the House Homeland Security Committee and has said he plans to re-evaluate the 700-mile fence.

    But Mr. Flake described himself as optimistic, saying the elections had disabused many Republicans of the notion that opposing legalization and guest worker plans would win widespread support.

    �That illusion is gone,� he said.

    The percentage of Hispanics who voted for Republicans fell to 29 percent, from 44 percent in 2004, and some Republicans say passing immigration bills is a crucial part of the effort to win them back.

    Mr. Flake warned that some Republicans might balk at proposals like broadening the number of illegal immigrants eligible for a less burdensome path to citizenship, making passage of bipartisan legislation potentially �politically more difficult.�

    The prospects for a bill that contains such a proposal remain particularly uncertain in the House, where many prominent Democrats want to ensure broad bipartisan backing as part of their efforts to maintain their majority in 2008, Congressional aides said.

    The House Democrats are concerned about protecting newly elected moderate and conservative Democrats, some of whom had campaigned against legalizing illegal immigrants.

    It is also unclear whether Mr. Gutierrez and Mr. Flake will produce the only House legislation on immigration and whether their plan will ultimately become the basis for the bill that emerges.

    In the Senate, Mr. Kennedy�s bill certainly has the backing of the Democratic leadership, Congressional aides said.

    Senator John Cornyn, Republican of Texas, argued that expanding citizenship eligibility and abandoning financing for the fence would alienate moderates in both parties. The three-tier legalization system, a hard-fought compromise, was critical for moderate Republican support for the original bill.

    The plan under consideration would allow 10 million or 11 million illegal immigrants to become eligible to apply for citizenship without returning home, up from 7 million in the original Senate bill. To be granted citizenship, they would have to remain employed, pass background checks, pay fines and back taxes, and enroll in English classes.

    �I think it�s a nonstarter,� said Mr. Cornyn, who opposes a path to citizenship for illegal workers, but supports a plan for temporary workers that would let foreigners work here temporarily before returning home.

    Congressional aides and lawyers familiar with the proposed bills emphasize that it will be very difficult for a smaller group of illegal immigrants, those who arrived after a certain date, perhaps 2004, to become citizens. The aides said the bill might include incentives for illegal immigrants to leave the country. While they hope such elements may ease concerns, many challenges remain.

    Some powerful unions, which expect to exert more leverage in the new Congress, remain deeply opposed to the temporary worker program in the Senate bill. The unions say it threatens American jobs.

    Officials at the A.F.L.-C.I.O. say they can scuttle such a plan next year, even though Mr. Bush and businesses say it is critical to ensure an adequate labor force.

    There is also the political clock to consider. Supporters of immigration measures acknowledge that the prospects for a bipartisan bill will dim significantly if a bill is not passed before the presidential primaries of 2008 are in full swing.

    Some Congressional aides and immigrants� advocates worry about the commitment of Mr. McCain, a likely presidential candidate in 2008.

    Mr. McCain has long supported legalization that would not require illegal immigrants to leave the United States. Some advocates fear that his ambitions may lead to a shifting of that stance to avoid alienating moderate Republicans.

    A spokeswoman for Mr. McCain said last week that he was not available to comment on the bill being drafted.

    Many lawmakers say their hope is growing that Congress will pass an immigration bill next year.

    �There are going to be hard choices that are going to be made, because we need to build a bipartisan, broad-based coalition,� said Mr. Gutierrez, who leads the House Democratic immigration group. �But I�m hopeful that in the environment in which we�re working now we can get it done.�





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  • pd_recapturing
    08-05 08:29 AM
    Friend, How many times, you need to know that even job requirements do get rigged by lawyers and employers to accommodate ppl in eb2/eb3 ...and its not jumping the line ...the person has to restart the labor and 140 in order to change the category ...u cant compare it with labor substitution (if u r comparing !!)



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  • khelanphelan
    05-24 12:11 PM
    Did the brownback amendment pass with the CIR?





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  • pointlesswait
    08-05 10:38 AM
    here is another point:
    if you want to remain a slave to the GC process and ristrict your career by staying with a company..just because you dont want to lose your PD...then..god save u and ur future..


    the person who ports his PS was already in the line..he reclaimed his rightful place after going thru the due deligence...of restarting his GC process...in fact ppl.

    i am sure ..after oct they will offer some relief to Eb3 category...


    i think its a childish and selfish idea...i agree labor substitution was absolute nonsense...but not PD porting!

    Why did they not take the employer to court? Why make the EB2 line suffer for these employer's faults?

    If an employer wrongly files your case under EB3 instead of EB2 or EB1, then the onus is on you to challenge them and take them to court if need be.



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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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  • NKR
    08-06 03:15 PM
    speaking of DOTs..how do you give Dots?

    Send a PM to soni and ask, he/she gave me one.



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  • smisachu
    12-27 11:35 PM
    As someone who comes from an army family and who has been trained as a reserve, I want to assure you guys who think that an Indo-Pak war will linger; that it will not. It will take Indian army 15-20 days to reach Islamabad if the full force is deployed and the army is in charge of the war and not our politicians.
    Pak has nukes, but their delivery mechanism is not sound and before Pak launches any nukes, US will disarm them and even if a few are launched India had a very good anti missile shield which will intercept and destroy all warheads before it enters Indian air.
    Now to actual strategies that India should follow-
    1. The civilian government in Pak is not at fault, previously they were responsible for terrorist attacks on India but now they are suffering at the hands of a monster of their own making. Terrorism and ISI.
    2. India should use air and missile power to strike out and wipe out a 500km radius around each terrorist camps while offering an olive branch to the Pak govt. What this does is it will kill with certainty all terrorists and will also wipe out surrounding villages.
    3. These are casualties of war and are a necessary evil, it will strike fear in the hearts of villagers and when ever a terrorist camp is set up; the surrounding villagers will chase them out in fear of India's wrath.
    4. India should send RAW analysts to assassinate all rouge ISI officers, if needed Mossad of Israel can help India.
    5. Finally the only way to deal with the problem of Pakistan longtime is to either socially cleanse Pakistan for the civilian government and bring in more modernism or carve out pakistan into several independent states. This is a long term goal which has to be thought about.

    If anyone is interested I can post the actual army strengths of India and Pak, its an interesting statistic and I am sure the Pak government knows about it in more detail than me. And it beats me that in spite of knowing the facts they are doing all this war posing. Just a tit bit from it, Indian army (only) is 1.3mil + 450K (reserves) strong. The combined Pak armed forces are 450K active + 500K reserves. India outnumbers Pak in almost every aspect 1:5 on an average. We have fought 4 wars and India has won all 4 times, why should the 5th time be any different? Lets finish this and move on, we have to become an economic superpower and we cannot be bothered by such trivial things like terrorism and pakistan. Lets take terror to the terrorists, like the song from the Hindi movie Arjun goes
    " Dushman ko yeh dikadho dushmani hai kya...":cool:





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  • mbartosik
    04-09 01:18 PM
    jung.lee

    I'll conspire with you and hijack the thread :D for a little while at least
    The solar system on my house: http://tinyurl.com/2jzbfq

    The tiles are by Open Energy Corp (www.openenergycorp.com)
    You will find my house on their web site.

    Price in round figures $10 per watt installed, it is a complex calc and depends on installer and what is included. There are a lot of rebates available and various tax credits (fed tax credit is only $2K). My rebate was $3.75 per watt, plus state tax credits.

    Capacity 9KW.

    I did a lot of work myself (mostly design - and it is a unique in US design) and worked with a professional installer (first install like this he had done). I also did a lot of the physical work on the roof too.

    KWh (per year) depends on location, angle and direction of roof.

    In Long Island multiply by about 800 for a steep west facing roof like mine so KWh = 9000*800. For more south facing and lower pitch multiply by 1100. In southern California I don't know what the multiplication factor would be, but you sure get a lot more sunshine, my guess would be more like x1800 for south facing. There are calculators where you can plumb in long/lat angle/direction and size.

    Roof area about 1000 sq ft including the concrete. So about 900 sq ft of solar tiles.

    Snow does not stick because the glass surface is too smooth, the tiles at the edge where the snow sticks are concrete.

    Geothermal heat pumps, they work like an air conditioning unit but exchange heat with the ground (via pipes) rather than the air. This is much more efficient because ground temp is about constant 55F (in NY). They can run forward or reverse (heat or cool) too. They can be used with forced air or radiant floor heating (not baseboard).

    If you are seriously interested in installing something like this my email is mark at immigrationvoice .org

    On the immigration side: So I've gone out on a limb, and bought a house and installed a load of upgrades, but still waiting for I485 to be processed. I consider this to be a hugely patriotic thing to do -- (could the Iraq war have anything to do with energy supply), yet still no GC. I would love to ask Mr. Dobbs, what he has done to reduce his demand for foreign energy imports!! He probably uses 4000 gallons of oil a year for heating :-)



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  • dealsnet
    01-07 05:16 PM
    All communists (left) people cannot digest happenings in the new world. Communism & its extremists are a cancer in the last century, by God's grace is over. Now Islamic terrorists are the new avatar. Their fate will be same as communists. This guy get money to write article and book for them,

    Before blaming muslims try to understand the fact and know atleast a little history. When you have time just read this.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jan/07/gaza-israel-palestine

    news article written by Oxford professor of international relations Avi Shlaim served in the Israeli army.





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  • LostInGCProcess
    09-29 12:36 PM
    After watching the debate the other day between Obama and McCain at the Ole Miss, I felt McCain was more truthful and talking from his mind. All these days I was hoping Obama was really going to make that "change", but after watching the debate, clearly it was McCain who, I personally feel, won the debate.

    Obama's speech was more like a prepared one. He was stumbling a lot, maybe he was nervous, I don't know. But McCain was cool all along, although he was not prepared for the debate...he changed his schedule in the very last minute.

    I am positive if he wins he would definitely do something about the broken Immigration System. Remember he has a daughter adopted from Bangladesh...of course, which has no connection with Immigration, but he seems to be the 'nice' guy.

    Cheers.:)



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  • Macaca
    12-28 07:12 PM
    Blending the Rules as We Go Along (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/28/world/asia/28iht-currents28.html) By ANAND GIRIDHARADAS | New York Times

    I wanted it to be right after breakfast when I asked Priya to marry me. The other elements were still forming, but that one felt important: a proposal to know together a thousand moments as simple and whole as this moment on a quiet Sunday morning.

    I gave a prologue, then asked. She cried, then answered. A ring was worn. And, in less time than it takes to mow a lawn, we had rewritten our fates � our fate � forever. Done deal.

    Or so we thought.

    In the coming days, we were reminded of what it means to belong to a tribe of people that straddles multiple cultures and multiple degrees of technological involvement � and, as a consequence, holds a rich variety of opinions about an engagement. We received an education in the nuances of doing a very old thing in these new globalized, digitized times.

    The first hint of engagement Babel came in a phone call to Priya�s grandparents in New Delhi, minutes after the proposal. Joy filled their voices when they heard our news; blessings poured forth, punctuated by the colonial remnant �all the best, all the best.�

    Her Nana, though, could not let the conversation end without asking a question:

    �But, Priya, how exactly does one get engaged?�

    The bride-to-be said something about a question being asked and a ring being given, and that was that. What we didn�t appreciate then was that, in India, it doesn�t count as an engagement when two impressionable young people make a decision all by themselves.

    Calling India to say that you have gotten engaged, but without any family present, without any rites having occurred, is like claiming to have clapped with one hand.

    Thanksgiving time soon came, and the two of us went to Washington, where our six parents live. Two celebrations of our engagement were planned: a dinner at Priya�s mother and stepfather�s home, the other a tea at my parents� place.

    Our new family traces its roots to cow worshipers in Benares and cow slaughterers in South Dakota, to Chennai in south India, to a piece of the Punjab that is now in Pakistan, to Iowa, to New Jersey and to a hamlet called Blaxall in Britain. We count among us those who worship the multitudinous Hindu deities, the lone Christian one and no divinity at all. We are speakers of English, Hindi, Punjabi, Tamil, French and Spanish. Many of us bear the passport of a country in which we were not born.

    All of which is wonderful until you have to choose an engagement ritual.

    After some debate and soul-searching, we decided to invent our own rites. We lit candles. We held hands. We told stories. We traded gifts. We laughed. We ate.

    But, back in India, there was still some confusion. Priya�s grandparents, 10 and a half time zones ahead of us, were aching to hear our voices on the night of that first Washington celebration. My grandparents phoned several times during the tea at my parents� home four days later. The way they saw it, this was the engagement � this coming together of families at the home of a certified adult. The earlier thing, as they saw it, was more like a sweet gesture.

    So, two weeks after we got engaged by our own definition, my grandparents congratulated me for getting engaged. Priya�s Indian cousins BlackBerry-messaged her they were delighted to be able, at long last, to congratulate her � now that it was �official.� Other relatives wrote seeking pictures of our �engagement ceremony.� We tried to explain that we hadn�t had one. But in this definitional spat, we were clearly outnumbered.

    When, today, is an engagement valid in the eyes of the world? Is it, according to the Western contractual idea, when two people declare their commitment to each other in private? Or when love mingles with economics in the giving of a ring, the first step in a gradual entangling of fortunes? Is it when two families gather and drink and toast? Or when a certain traditional ritual is done � or, in our case, a new ritual?

    Or is it when you change your Facebook relationship status?

    We had been so consumed with family, and with the intricacies of the Indian and American rules of engagement, that we ignored our virtual tribe. We had called some friends on the phone immediately after it happened, and e-mailed some others. But then the celebrations of the nonvirtual world took off, and we were absorbed into that love and tumult, and our engagement went unrecorded by the digital sphere.

    Just when we thought we had satisfied every possible definition of engagement, marking it in ways suitable to ourselves, our parents and our extended clans, Priya�s stepsister brought up Facebook. Why hadn�t we updated our relationship status to proclaim the engagement? It was peculiar, this omission: The absence of a Facebook update could be read as the presence of something amiss. What were we trying to hide?

    Relationship statuses, like ideas, have derived their authority from different sources over the millenniums: A relationship could be valid if properly certified by the ancient rituals; or valid if faithful to the words of the holy texts; or valid if codified in a contract recognized by the correct governmental agency; and now, in 2010, valid if etched into one�s �Info� tab on Facebook.

    We promptly made things right. As it turns out, we were Facebook-engaged around the time that the site�s creator, Mark Zuckerberg, was named Time magazine�s Person of the Year. We made it �official� for the third time, our union ordained by this new minister of the universe.

    At last, the engagement is properly established before our American, Indian and virtual tribes � and, now, before the readers of this newspaper. The wedding looms, and with it another inevitable contest of definitions.

    I can already hear the question forming: �But how exactly does one get married?�





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  • h1techSlave
    04-07 03:19 PM
    In early 2000 when the stock market was going crazy, every pundit worth his salt was proclaiming at the top of their voice to buy stock. And then the whole thing collapsed.

    In the same time period, not many experts recommend buying a house. I remember in 2002 a community near my work was selling town homes for around 200,000 and there were no buyers. Today (after correction) those same houses are still selling at around 450,000.

    I 100% agree with you that this is a good time to buy. I know many people are saying that the market would crash another 20%. But the fact is that you can negotiate 10-15% from the advertised price. And there are enough homes in the bank-repo and short sale categories where the prices are 20-30% below the price mentioned in zillow.

    Having owned a town home for the last 2.5 years, I can very confidently say that the yard work and house cleaning etc. etc. are not such a big deal. Actually we mow our lawn with a manual push mower (may not be practical if you have more than 10 cents to mow) and clean the snow using a $10 snow shovel. Who said a little exercise is bad for you? I have also helped my single family friends in their yard work and never thought working outside is such a bad thing.

    But there is a risk. And house is big ticket item, you have move cautiously.

    I firmly believe in the Contrarian Theory. When speculators run, its time to get in and BUY. I owned two homes and I am in the process to getting a third one. I would be a good candidate for those TV shows on HGTv/TLC. I buy a home build equity(through appreciation) and flip. This will get me closer to my DREAM home. I cannot see myself in a home for more than 5 years.

    The inventory glut in (SF Bay Area) is not desirable, they talk about east contra-costa and south Santa Clara but there are not much available in core bay-area. The inventory is basically non-desirable.

    Simple math, just estimate the number of immigrants that will be ready to buy a home in SF Bay. Just look at the inventory in desirable neighborhoods. They dont match.
    Stretching (financially) yourself is always uncomfortable but it can reap you huge dividends. If you are not comfortable, then I would say keep aside monthly payments that would cover 6 months and your home should be sold incase you need to get out of it.

    No other investment in US(for individuals) is as leveraged as homes/real-estate. You invest 5% and reap the benefits(or losses) of the rest.



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  • desi3933
    07-11 10:57 AM
    Yes H1B is NOT Stamped yet.

    You can try getting visa from Canada/Mexico, but if visa is denied one has to fly home country to get visa from. You can not re-enter US if visa is denied in Canada/Mexico.

    Do you have degree from US? In that case, it may be helpful.


    ________________________
    Not a legal advice.





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  • mariner5555
    04-22 03:48 PM
    this is what I had meant when I said that (for some people only) moving in to a very big house leads to lower standard on living. I repeat - this is only if you buy a big house beyond your means. this is from fortune
    ---
    Stay-at-home mom, 40, Apopka, Fla.
    We bought a home in Orlando, Fla., in February 2005, the height of the boom here. At the time, we could afford the home, the taxes and the insurance. It would be tight but we kept planning on "the bonus" or "the raise."

    We got all caught up in the "square footage" of the home. Well, what we didn't realize was that with our BIG HOUSE comes BIG EVERYTHING! Big taxes, big insurance, big water bills, big electric bills. The anxiety at the end of the month caused health problems for both my husband, Victor, and I.

    Last summer, we realized that we could not live like this any longer. We could not afford our home, we were prisoners of our mortgage. We couldn't enjoy life outside the house. We were literally trapped.

    We decided to "downsize" our life, our lifestyle and our home. It was a lot of soul searching but we both realized that it's not all about "square footage" or bedrooms or full baths. It's about being able to afford a mortgage (and all the add-ons) and still have money at the end of the month.

    Now, our timing could not be worse of course, for putting the big house on the market. We built a much smaller house, ranch style and I love it! My first electric bill was a third of what it used to be. Yes, we still have the big house, but we were able to rent it out and cover expenses.

    We are not making a dime on the rental, and when the market comes back, we will put it back up to sell. We wiped out Victor's 401(k) to pay off debt and put a down payment on the new house. We have established a savings account and there is actually money left over at the end of the month....whew!





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  • Macaca
    12-28 07:23 PM
    In India, a struggle for moderation as a young Muslim woman quietly battles extremism (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/27/AR2010122704519.html) By Emily Wax | Washington Post

    Rubina Sandhi had settled in for a night of homework when panic swept through the narrow, congested alleys of her neighborhood.

    It was Sept. 11, 2001. Television sets in the mosques, tea shops and market were beaming images of the World Trade Center engulfed in flames in New York. Five months later, Rubina's house was burning as Hindu mobs torched Muslim areas of her city, leaving thousands of people homeless. She remembers smoke hovering over Ahmedabad just as it had over New York.

    With their few remaining possessions, Rubina's family members took refuge in a squalid relief camp and, several weeks later, moved into ramshackle housing on the edge of the city - where only Muslims lived and worked. "We felt like ghosts," recalled Rubina, who was then 12.

    The rioting was among India's worst sectarian violence in decades, hardening divisions between the Hindu majority and the country's 140 million Muslims as hard-liners on both sides sought to exploit the tensions. Soon after the rioting, many young Muslims in Rubina's neighborhood started following stricter forms of Islam as imams fanned out into the region's poorest Muslim areas, some bringing with them Wahhabism, the fundamentalist form of Islam practiced in Saudi Arabia.

    Some Indian Muslims even sought training in Pakistan to carry out acts of revenge in India, their version of violent jihad. For her part, Rubina chose a different struggle, determined to be a good Muslim and daughter as the community around her became more radicalized. She fought for the right to make decisions for herself, and she tried to find a way to voice her beliefs as a woman, as others around her were being silenced.

    Her decisions would mirror those of many other young Muslim women in her city who entered adulthood in the aftermath of religious violence and the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. She would be asked to compromise her dreams, and her commitment to Islam would be questioned.

    Ahmedabad, a 600-year-old city in the state of Gujarat, has long been a vibrant historical center where religions aspired to coexist. It was the headquarters for Mahatma Gandhi's ashram and his peaceful freedom struggle and is celebrated for its Indo-Islamic architecture. Of the city's 5 million people, 11 percent are Muslim.

    Before the riots, many Muslims in Rubina's neighborhood celebrated Hindu traditions. Yet tensions between Hindus and Muslims here often rose to the surface.

    The violence in 2002 erupted after 59 Hindus were burned to death on a train as they were returning home from a pilgrimage site. Muslim extremists were blamed for the blaze, but the cause of the fire remains in dispute. In 2004, a government-appointed panel ruled that the train fire was an accident and not caused by Muslims.

    Soon after the anti-Muslim riots, extremist imams started to gain more clout. Among them was a firebrand televangelist named Zakir Naik, whose weekly sermons are broadcast from Mumbai and Saudi Arabia. Thousands of young Muslims have been drawn to his powerful slogans, including his declaration that to defend Islam, "every Muslim should be a terrorist."

    This more conservative brand of Islam became more acceptable, and it seemed to empower Muslim men in India. But it had the opposite effect on Muslim women. The imams and mullahs warned young women to stay indoors, to forgo higher education and to become dutiful mothers of as many children as God would give them. The children, they said, would replace the Muslims killed during the riots.

    "The Hindu mobs who attacked us called us all terrorists. Then the mullahs wanted to take away our freedoms," Rubina said, adding: "Everyone felt confused."

    A pervasive fear

    Rubina's father, Mohammed Sandhi, had an eighth-grade education and a job selling incense sticks to Hindu temples. When he was a young boy, his grandparents had told him haunting stories about Muslim-Hindu tensions in the 1930s and rioting in the southern city of Hyderabad that forced the family to migrate to Ahmedabad.

    Mohammed believed in the aspirations of a rising India. He had saved for years to move the family into a comfortable two-room home, and he hoped that his two children - Rubina and her older brother, Irfan - would be the first in their family to attend college.

    But after the riots, Mohammed began to believe that his ambitions were naive, at least for Indian Muslims. "We thought that was the past, over, just our history. But after the 2002 riots, we worry every day that the violence could happen again," he said.

    In the street just outside the family's housing complex, 69 people, mostly Muslims, were burned alive during the riots, the first and largest single massacre during the crisis, a federal investigation later found.

    From there, fighting spread. Over the next two months, more than 200 mosques and hundreds of Muslim shrines were burned down, and 17 ancient Hindu temples were attacked, according to police and human rights workers.

    Everything in Rubina's home was destroyed: childhood photographs, birth certificates, school records and land deeds.

    The family left behind the charred ruins of their home for a relief camp, one of more than 100 that housed 150,000 Muslims after the riots.

    The city slowly calmed, but acts of violence on both sides continued and people remained fearful.

    Watching their parents weep, Rubina and Irfan grew angrier and more confused. "We never thought this could happen here," said Rubina's mother, Mumtaz Sandhi. "We thought we are Muslims. But we are also Indians."

    Silencing women's voices

    After several weeks in the camps, Rubina's family settled in Juhapura, a poor area on the western outskirts of the city where many Muslims moved from Hindu-dominated localities.

    The neighborhood has some middle-class areas but is largely poor, and activists have fought for basic government services, including paved roads, a sewage treatment system and garbage collection.

    During her teenage years, Rubina started to notice that her brother, like many young Muslim men, was growing more observant of Islam, more conservative, introverted. They had always been close, and tragedy had strengthened their bond. But their paths began to diverge as Irfan sought comfort and sanctuary in the strictures of Islam.

    Rubina, like other young Muslim women, feared she would lose her freedom under those strictures. She resisted calls from increasingly conservative imams to wear a traditional black garment that covers the body and sometimes the face.

    In Gujarat, more and more women suddenly started dressing more conservatively, often as a show of Muslim pride but also to ward off sexual advances and potential sexual violence.

    Rubina's mother began covering her hair, and Rubina said Irfan soon told her that he preferred to marry a woman who dressed conservatively.

    Around this time, Rubina met a social worker named Jamila Khan at a meeting for Muslim women concerned about the living conditions in Juhapura and profiling of Muslim men as terrorists. But Khan also spoke out against Muslim leaders intent on reeling in Muslim women, curbing the liberties enshrined in India's secular constitution. She described herself as an "Islamic feminist."

    "It doesn't matter what our women were wearing," Khan told Rubina and her friends. "What is important is still having a voice. Islamic rigidity is silencing our most dynamic Muslim female minds."

    Many of Rubina's peers were giving up on having a career and were marrying and starting families earlier. Instead of going to college to study business or medicine, many were taking up courses at nearby mosques that taught them to be good Muslim wives.

    But as Rubina entered young adulthood, she said, she became aware of the hypocrisy among many of the imams. Although they preached that Muslim women should be homemakers, they sent their daughters to private schools and universities in Britain, Canada and the United States.

    During her first and only year at college, a Hindu extremist group circulating on campus began warning Hindus against having friendships or romantic relationships with Muslims. Rubina said some Hindu students started calling the places where Muslim students gathered "the Gaza Strip" or "Pakistan."

    "But I am Indian, too," Rubina said she wanted to tell them. She felt ashamed. Betrayed. Silenced.





    myuname
    04-06 10:44 PM
    I guess the only way US of A will ever understand its worth in the world is when: (I am just referring to hypocritical US of A'ans, there are good people too.)

    1) India and China stop sending so many Engineers and doctors.
    2) China and south-east Asia stop supplying Nike's and toilet paper to Walmart's


    I guess the positive side of this H1 bill will be further development of Indian and Chinese economies via decreased brain-drain. I guess it already slowed down (to a trickle?!) quite a bit in the past few years and I Hope this bill plugs the leaks too. Hurray! No more brain drain from India and China.

    Why didn't this happen a few years ago and I wouldn't even have had any regrets being in US of A ever. Yikes!





    thakurrajiv
    03-26 03:32 PM
    I agree that credit crunch is worst we have ever seen and the worst is still about 9-12 months away. A lot of investment banks are going to be in trouble. I work for a big financial services comp and even though they say they are not affected, I know that their 'high-yeild low-risk' funds lost around $30billion. Who pays for this? investors? hmm China/Japan.. maybe. But Ben Bernanke is keen on doing whatever it takes to jumstart the economy. So he is printing dollars and reducing interest rates to historic lows(considering 60 year cycles). When I bought my first home in 2001, the rate was 8.5%. Whats it now 5.5%?
    So my view is that inflation is a bigger problem that Ben B does not want to tackle in the near future(3-4 months). Well in times of inflation your savings/investment is better in real-estate than anything else. But definitely NOT cash.

    So although we might be near the bottom of real estate market, we can never guesstimate the bottom until it has passed. My advice is, negotiate hard(buyers market) and get into a deal now. As a safety net, you can ask for a long escrow(around 180 days). That way you can backout of the deal if things head south. You've only lost the deposit(subject to arbitration at least in California).

    Someone pointed out that Visa Status is a smaller issue, the big issue is if you can hold onto your investment for atleast 5 years, you are golden.

    I believe that having a job(well paid) in recession is an investors dream as everything is on SALE.

    "So my view is that inflation is a bigger problem that Ben B does not want to tackle in the near future(3-4 months). "
    Interesting, so you are saying buy house because inflation will be high for next 3-4 months !! Personally I will not buy house based on what happens in next 3-4 months.
    Stock market is more liquid than RE. Did the market go to the same levels after dot com burst ? How many years did it take to even feel normal in stock market ?
    In real terms, house prices have doubled from 1999 to 2005. This has never ever happened in history. Till date in most US housing markets we have seen correction of less than 10%. Do you think house prices have bottomed out ? Even if house prices fall further by 30% you will still be at historical high prices in real terms.
    I think the big question is is this bubble burst or just a cyclical correction ? Most of the arguments in this thread have been based on thoughts that it is cyclical correction.
    Imagine what will happen to house prices if its indeed a bubble burst ( which I beleive in). 20% down from here in not much !!
    I think this is time to sit on fence and let things settle down. Patience is the name of the game.