Thursday, February 12, 2009

The other side of the crisis

Friedman writes in the NYT:

…the U.S. Senate unfortunately voted on Feb. 6 to restrict banks and other financial institutions that receive taxpayer bailout money from hiring high-skilled immigrants on temporary work permits known as H-1B visas.

It is a lose-lose strategy! It reminds me of a Sanskrit proverb: Bad times, bad decision!

Friedman has a solution:

When the best brains in the world are on sale, you don’t shut them out. You open your doors wider. We need to attack this financial crisis with green cards not just greenbacks, and with start-ups not just bailouts.

Note this as well:

…more than half of Silicon Valley start-ups were founded by immigrants over the last decade. These immigrant-founded tech companies employed 450,000 workers and had sales of $52 billion in 2005

Tsvangirai as PM in Zimbabwe

Finally, a good news coming out of Zimbabwe! Morgan Tsvangirai has taken oath of office as the prime minister of a country that is embattled with hyperinflation, massive unemployment, cholera outbreak, and social breakdown. All one can hope is that Mugabe won't interfere with Tsvangirai as he did during the past election. Can Zimbabwe reemerge as the bread basket of Africa? This is uncertain but what is certain now is that the country will find hard to feed the existing population and manage the currency that has no worth in the market.
"The first priority is to stabilise the economy," he said. "The economic collapse has forced millions of our most able to flee the country. This must end today."