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Profile Information

Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Southwestern PA
Home country: USA
Current location: Washington, DC
Member since: Mon Nov 10, 2003, 07:36 PM
Number of posts: 43,646

About Me

If an H-1b has an American accent, they are probably not an H-1b. It's race, not citizenship. Americans are more diverse than you think. Millions of US citizens don't look the way you might expect. This fact is very important and will help us win elections.

Journal Archives

Skilled, foreign workers are giving up on their American dreams -- and turning to Canada


Tens of thousands of skilled, educated foreign workers are rushing to file their H-1B visa applications when processing opens on April 1.
But many of them will be rejected — either by the highly selective lottery, or by delays that lawyers and experts attribute to the Trump administration's crackdown on legal immigration to the US.
Alex, a temporary foreign worker who spent much of his life in the US, told INSIDER he could face rejection for an H-1B visa for the third time.
But this time, he says he'll be moving to Canada if that happens, and he's already started the immigration process up north and is astonished by how different it is to the US system.

Alex still remembers the gut punch he felt when he was told he might have to leave the country he grew up in.

After nearly a decade in America — first attending a Massachusetts boarding school, then a Connecticut college — Alex walked into an immigration lawyer's office near the end of his senior year, thinking it might finally be time to inquire about switching from his temporary student visa onto some sort of permanent status.

He thought it would be easy.

He was floored when the lawyer explained to him that it didn't matter how long he'd lived in the US, how quickly he'd adapted to American life, or even how excellent his grades were in school.

If he couldn't convince a company to sponsor him for an H-1B visa— a painstaking process that randomly selects winners from a lottery, takes months, and often costs thousands of dollars — there was likely no other alternative for him. At one point she joked that if Alex had a serious girlfriend, he should consider marriage instead.

If they can't get enough H-1Bs, they have to hire Americans. This is true for several fields, but the biggest impact from the Trump reforms is in IT services contracting. Tremendous opportunity for Americans to apply for these jobs.

Get it DUers!

Conservatives and Progressives Debate Feminism (Extended Version)

Cheques - SNL

My plumber takes Venmo. But I do remember there was a time when people still used checks.

For the first time, a state's National Guard command staff is made up of all women


It wasn’t until the Cold War, in the mid-1950s, that women were allowed to join the National Guard — as medical officers. It would take four more decades for a woman to rise to the level of a state adjutant general, the top commander of a state’s military forces.

Now, for the first time in the nation, a state National Guard — Maryland’s — is led by a command staff of all women. As of last fall, the top four leaders in the state’s National Guard are all women — three of them African American — and all mothers.

Since 2015, Maj. Gen. Linda L. Singh has served at the helm of Maryland’s military, the first African American and first woman to hold the role of adjutant general for the Maryland National Guard.

In June, ​​Brig. Gen. Janeen L. Birckhead took over as assistant adjutant general for Army, and in August, Brig. Gen. April Vogel began serving as assistant adjutant general for Air. Then, in December, Command Sgt. Maj. Perlisa D. Wilson became senior enlisted adviser for Maryland’s National Guard.

The female-powered staff was, in many ways, entirely unintentional, Singh said. When the positions opened up, Singh by no means was seeking an all-female leadership team — she simply wanted the most qualified candidates available, she said.

Verizon's Spam-Blocking Call Filter Is Now Free


Robocalls are annoying as hell, and it seems the problem is only getting worse. But if you’re on Verizon, you may have a new way to block them with the company’s Call Filter app, which recently became free for all Verizon customers.

Previously, the service—which is designed to detect and help cut down on phone spam—required a $2.99 monthly fee. However, this week, Verizon split the service into two tiers: A free tier that detects spam, filters out robocalls, and reports offending numbers to the carrier, and a new $2.99 plan that adds in additional features such as caller ID, personal spam, block lists, and even a risk meter that attempts to evaluate potentially malicious calls.

Also, to help cut down on robocalls even further, Verizon says its rolling out improvements to Call Filter through the use of its STIR/SHAKEN tech, which is able to detect when spammers spoof legitimate phone numbers in order to bypass traditional blocking techniques.

However, if you’re considering purchasing the paid tier for Call Filter, I would advise to hold off unless robocalls have truly become a never-ending source of frustration. The reason is that many of Call Filter’s paid functions like caller ID and the ability to add numbers to a personal block list are features already built into a wide number of phones, while others like the risk meter are already sort of available on select phones like the Pixel 3, which flashes warning messages saying “Spam Likely” when faced with potential robocalls.

In case you were wondering about Call Filter’s two-star rating on the App Store, it seems a big reason for many of the previous low scores was Verizon’s previous $3 a month fee, something the new free tier of Call Filter should address.

For Verizon customers with an iPhone, Call Filter is available as a download inside the App Store. Meanwhile, for Android phone owners, Verizon says Call Filter should already have come pre-installed on the majority of devices. Unfortunately, if its not pre-installed, there’s no way to download the app from the Google Play Store just quite yet.

If you're tired of getting calls from suspicious and annoying scammers. It's worth reading through the instructions carefully to set it up correctly. They have instructions on their website: https://www.verizonwireless.com/support/how-to-use-call-filter/

Hiya is another app with a free version that I've been using.

Enjoy this John Oliver video about robocalls

'Ninja' kangaroo rats kick rattlesnakes in the head faster than you can blink. The videos are 'epic.


A wide-eyed kangaroo rat sits hunched in darkness among sparse tufts of desert plant life. But the diminutive rodent isn’t alone in the Arizona desert. Just inches away, a deadly sidewinder rattlesnake is lying in wait, looking for its next meal.

The wily predator rears back and lunges at its prey — a lightning-fast attack that for a number of other living creatures would probably mean certain death. But in less than a second, the snake is on the ground with nothing but dust in its jaws and the kangaroo rat is bounding away to freedom.

The rat’s harrowing escape, however, isn’t just luck, according to a pair of papers published this week by a team of researchers from San Diego State University, University of California at Riverside and University of California at Davis. The desert-dwelling critters commonly found in western North America have a rather impressive arsenal of evasive maneuvers, including, much to the shock of scientists, the ability to deliver punishing midair “ninja-style” kicks in a fraction of a second, according to a Wednesday news release.

For years, each time a kangaroo rat avoided becoming rattlesnake food, Grace Freymiller and Malachi Whitford, PhD students at San Diego State University who authored the papers, were left with the same question: What happened?

“You see a blur of motion and then the kangaroo rat is gone, and you have no clue,” Whitford told The Washington Post. At most, each battle between snake and rat lasts about 700 milliseconds, or 0.7 seconds, he said.

Sometimes "No thanks" just isn't enough when someone wants to have you for dinner. Video at the link.


I know the feeling...

Inner Loop of Capital Beltway shut down near American Legion Bridge after tanker overturns


The crash, near the Virginia-Montgomery County line, has closed all but the left shoulder of I-495 northbound.

A tanker truck overturned on Interstate 495 near the American Legion Bridge just after 2 p.m. Thursday, shutting down all northbound lanes of the Inner Loop of the Capital Beltway as fuel leaked from the flipped vehicle.


Officials advised motorists to find an alternate route around the crash, which happened on the Virginia side of the Montgomery County line. Fairfax Fire and Rescue said it would take at least two hours to reopen the roadway.


It was not immediately clear what caused the truck to topple over and land on its side, blocking all lanes but the left shoulder on the highway. The Virginia Department of Transportation, which advised no cars would be getting around the crash until emergency workers could clear it, asked that travelers “do not attempt to get on the Inner Loop at this time. Period."

Pete Buttigieg calls Pence 'at best complicit' with resurgence of white nationalism


Democratic presidential candidate and South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg said Wednesday that Vice President Mike Pence is "at best complicit" in the resurgence of white nationalist groups in the wake of President Donald Trump's election.

Asked about his fellow Hoosier — Pence is the former governor of Indiana — on Buzzfeed News’s online show “AM to DM,” Buttigieg said the vice president has been “consistently horrible” and said Americans face a danger of the continued radicalization with “what seems at best to be a level of negligence, if not encouragement, coming from the highest office in the land.”

“I think the moment you come on board with a project like the Trump campaign or the Trump-Pence administration, you are at best complicit in the process that has given cover for the flourishing and the resurgence of white nationalism in our midst,” Buttigieg said.

“It’s an obligation for anyone in a position of authority or power — or even just visibility — to speak out about why it’s wrong, why it’s not consistent with American values and why if we really want to talk about safety and security, that has less to do about putting up a wall from sea to shining sea than making sure that people are not continuing to be radicalized into violent white nationalism,” the mayor said during the interview.

Krispy Kreme owners admit to family history of Nazi ties


New York (CNN Business)The family that owns well-known consumer brands like Krispy Kreme doughnuts, Keurig Dr. Pepper and Panera Bread say their Nazi ancestors used slave labor during World War II.

The Reimann family, which owns the controlling stake in JAB Holdings and is reportedly one of the richest families in Germany, will donate €10 million, or $11 million, to a yet-undisclosed charity after a three-year investigation that it commissioned discovered details of their ancestors' behavior.

A family spokesperson said Albert Reimann Sr., who died in 1954, and Albert Reimann Jr., who died in 1984, used Russian civilian prisoners and French prisoners of war as forced labor in their factories during the war, and that they were anti-Semites and avowed supporters of Adolf Hitler.

The investigation also found that Reimann Sr. donated to Hitler's paramilitary SS force as early as 1931.
Investigators also found a letter from Reimann Jr. to a local mayor complaining that the French prisoners of war weren't working hard enough and should be in prison.

more at the link...

JAB Holdings, which is based in Luxembourg, also owns Peet's Coffee, Pret A Manger, Einstein's Bagels and Coty.

Thousands of Indian techies return home as US rejects visa extensions


Indian techies living in the US are having a hard time as the US government has refused visa extensions. While some are still struggling over filing a new H-1B visa, many were left with no option but to return to India.

Apart from the increase in outright denials, there has also been a sharp rise in the number of requests for evidence (RFE). These are notices the US authorities issue to visa applicants seeking more information and documents on their applications. This not only delays the visa process but also increase costs for companies.

An engineer, who returned to India nine months ago, tells ET that "shifting with a kid who was born in the US was challenging".

Though the USCIS this week said it would resume premium processing of the H-1B visa, Indian IT firms are still struggling with extension of the visas.

According to industry experts, tightening of the visa process is primarily due to the change in regime that has focused on securing more jobs for Americans.

When American companies can't find enough H-1Bs, they will be forced to hire Americans. This is a tremendous opportunity for American DUers to apply for these jobs today!

Get it DUers!
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