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Dear Editor,

Regarding Congress' passage of the H-1B bill, I think your Immigration Daily comments of September 28 quite succinctly describe the situation politically: Even though Congress' discussion of the bill followed the release of a GAO report quite critical of the program, Congress blithely ignored its own research service, as if the GAO did not even exist. (They also ignored recent exposes by the San Francisco Chronicle and Los Angeles Times of massive fraud in the program.) Such is the power that the computer industry campaign donations hold over our nation's government.

Even though the Immigrants Support Network, a militant organization of mostly Indian H-1Bs, did get all the reforms they wanted, the practical impact on their indentured-servant status and lengthy delays in attaining their green cards will apparently be only moderate in scope. So, indentured servitude will continue to be alive and well.

My Congressional testimony, to which I have made regular updates since 1998, (I was invited to testify again in 1999 and 2000, but declined the invitations) and will continue to update in the future, is available at Your readers may be particularly interested in my explanation of the fact that, contrary to the industry lobbyists' claim that the H-1B program is just a temporary solution to the labor "shortage," that "shortage," as defined by the industry, will actually be permanent; see Section 1.1.17 of my testimony.

By the way, I have a column in the current (October 16) issue of Forbes Magazine, explaining how computer industry employers are shooting themselves in the foot with their very shortsighted hiring policies. The H-1B program is mentioned only in passing, but your readers may find it of interest.

Norm Matloff
Professor of Computer Science
University of California, Davis

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