Saturday, July 9, 2011

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  • just_wait_for_gc
    08-11 11:53 AM
    this moron has failed to realise the unfortunate fact that UK has been(and continues to be) the head quarters for all terrorists. In fact they need to fix their immigration system .
    Anyway I dont give a shit to this freak. My favourite website is no more CNN...





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  • nojoke
    04-14 04:15 PM
    Exactly. now before you jump ..let me say that this may not be applicable to you. but most of the people that I know of, who have very young kids ( 1 - 5/6 year olds) ..buying a house was a wrong decision. (and common sense says the same thing). Because they bought the house - either they had to slog extra or take up 2 jobs and/or spouse has to work. some of them had a baby sitter ..who would put the kid in front of the TV all day. some of the kids are/were at home all day with their mother (but no friends) and hence they were lonely. (wife does not know how to drive or only one car) ..some of the luckier ones were the ones who could afford to put them in all day daycare
    (but in this case ..kid hardly knows his parents well).
    in my humble opinion ..the best case is where a mother takes care of the son as long as possible and at the same time the kid plays with other kids of same age ..(there are definitely many exceptions) ...and most (neutral) people would say that those who rent would be more likely to have this best case.

    Exactly. This argument of buying house for kids is no argument. You can argue on either side. The problem is when NKR made a statement that it is big deal to not buy a house because your kid will ask "can you give back my childhood?". As if a 7 year old will regret not owning a house. The child will regret not owning a playstation3, eat chocalates all the time, play all time. We all know what we wanted when we were kids.;)





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  • pns27
    07-14 02:22 AM
    Disclaimer: I am an EB3-Indian with a PD of Oct 2003.

    Delax: I agree entirely with what you are saying. Your arguments are 100% valid. The part that I don't get is why are you trying so desperately hard to convince EB3-Indians that their letter campaign lacks merit?

    Remember, a drowning man will clutch on to a straw for hope. You are like a sailor in a boat trying to tell the drowning man that a straw is no good. So, if you cannot get Eb3-Indians to see your point-of-view, just lay off this thread. Do you really expect all EB3-Indians to say "Thanks to delax, we now see the folly of our arguments. Let's stop this irrational effort, and instead just do nothing!"

    I can assure you that despite being an EB3-Indian, I am not participating in this campaign. Because I know that it is a ridiculous argument to expect PD to take preference over skills. And honestly, I cannot come up with a single rational reason to demand a GC for me over any EB1 or EB2 applicant.

    To all you EB3-Indians, chisel this into your brain: The US immigration system wants EB1 first, then EB2 and then EB3. It doesn't matter what your qualifications are or what the profession is...what matters is in which employment-based category was your LC filed. If you think, you are skilled enough, then stop wasting time in arguing with EB2 folks. Use your skills to apply for EB1 (which is current) or EB2 and get your GC fast. Otherwise, get this chiselled into your head as well: You are less skilled than EB2 and EB1 (purely on the basis of the LC category), so it makes 100% sense that US will give you the lowest priority. Period.

    As I wrote earlier, I'm an EB3-Indian as well. Only differences being, I have still maintained my sanity, and I have the patience to wait for IV to deliver the official guidance on proceeding further.

    Hi kutra,

    Good post I can understand what you want to do here, you are diffusing the tensions between EB2 and EB3. I hope many more people write posts like you and I appreciate it. But factually what you said is not correct "The US immigration system wants EB1 first, then EB2 and then EB3".

    What I am posting here I sent the same in private messages to some other members and it helped to diffuse this bad arguments between EB3 and EB2 folks.. I am posting here because I thought with this I can give the right(my?) perspective on this and bring some �sanity� to these arguments.

    Here is my take on this EB1, EB2 and EB3.

    Out of the total 140K each EB group gets equal quota of 33.33%. So if each EB group gets equal quota of 33.33%, then what and where is the priority? EB1, EB2 and EB3 are just groups, it just means that US need these categories of jobs to be filled by immigrant workers.

    By definition always number applications filed in EB3>EB2>EB1 there is no argument there. And the waiting time also will be EB3>EB2>EB1. That is fair, there is no competition here across groups, each have a quota and its own queue, every one competes with in the group.

    If first, all(9K Ind)(140K Total) Visas are given to E1 and any leftover are given to EB2 and then any leftover from EB2 are given to EB3 then you can say the priority is EB1>EB2>EB3. The spillover that to from a particular preference has priority I understand. But at the least every group will get its 33.33% if those many category applications are present in that group.

    Yes, unused ROW EB1 go EB2 and then to EB3. Yes unused ROW EB2 and ROW EB3 and to EB3. That makes sense and it dos not contradict what I am saying. Now EB2 is special case that there are lots of EB2 India applications are pending so they get only the spillover from EB1.


    I agree with you on your statement below, and I feel the same way. Looks like if either Eb2 or EB3 is mentioned in a thread it turning into a bad arguments between EB2 and EB3 hope this ends soon.
    As I wrote earlier, I'm an EB3-Indian as well. Only differences being, I have still maintained my sanity, and I have the patience to wait for IV to deliver the official guidance on proceeding further.





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  • my2cents
    05-03 07:55 AM
    For 330K house, the calculations are probably splitting hairs. If it had already lost value to what the income in your area can support, then it is good time. But if it is still going down, I would rather buy a house at the bottom even if the interest rate gets higher. I can sell the house immediately without loss, if I have too.

    You think buying and selling a home a joke. You look on an average for 3-5 month to buy a home and one fine day u woke up and interest rate is high u plan to sell. This may be even possible only when u have bought house for pure investment.

    Once you move to ur first house with ur family. you will not sell ur house until u r forced to because of job/other extreme factors.

    Location is most important that any thing. It is very very localized. do u think manhattan house price went down..in fact it went up. Similarly DC metro area is relatively stronger compare to mid west.

    A bit of luck is always there in every single thing. Predicting bottom/peak is always challenge.

    One funny thing..people are planning how to sell before they even look for house to buy. lol..



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  • Marphad
    12-27 08:44 AM
    I agree with you to a great extent. The Pakistani society is fractured right now, and there is nothing to unite the country than a conflict with India.

    Where I disagree with you is when you think that this is the calculus of the Pakistan army. I think the senior army (and civilian) leadership in Pakistan knows the Kargil episode too well. Kargil is fresh in their memories, and they know that a conflict with India is not worth the costs. Plus, if we are to assume that the Pakistan army was behind the 2001 Parliament attack, then again we know that the Pakistan army had to back down that time too....So, unless the Pakistan army is run by Beavis and Butthead who repeatedly touch a hot object and go 'ouch...ouch....ouch...ouch...ouch...', there is no reason for them to do this.....

    So I think, that its the militant elements that are being squeezed by the Pakistan army and NATO, and not the the Pakistan army, that pulled this off.
    (I must also add that I have a bias to believe that; thats just natural.) Everytime we see Indian and Pakistani relations improving, something blows up somewhere, and things are back to square one.




    I wonder if you attribute any of that to the media coverage of the event. Especially the 'live tv' aspect of it.
    I don't think a bomb blast with the same number of casualties would have had this much impact.
    I also think the media could have acted more responsibly than it did. I was somewhat disappointed by Pakistani media. I think there was too much bias and not so much objectivity in the coverage. I am afraid the Indian media would have acted in a similar manner too....

    Alisa, you sound like rational Pakistani who can think and judge the things by oneself. I wish % like you people increase in Pakistan.





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  • logiclife
    11-21 05:44 PM
    Lou Dobbs gets his ratings based on how much angry he can get people.

    Same goes for Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilly.

    The easiest way to get good ratings and viewership of your program on radio or TV, if you dont have substance and if you dont want to work hard, is to make people angry.

    Angry listeners are regular listeners and motivated listeners. Also, a lot more emotional and a lot less objective.

    They all know they are talking garbage. Take Bill O'Reilly's "War on Christmas" for example. Does it really matter if walmart hangs a sign that says "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas". Does it feed the hungry homeless people? Does to stop Genocide in Darfur. NO.

    But it can make some people angry, which gets good ratings and 90% of broadcast media are ratings pimps. All they care about is viewership and ratings and they dont themselves believe in the nonsense they utter into the microphones.



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  • xyzgc
    12-30 11:05 PM
    Why should we waste our resources when Pakistanis are doing the damage by themselves??? The joke is Pak blaming some poor Indian for a bomb blast which was quickly owned up by a domestic terrorist organization!!
    Pakistan is a begging bowl which is trying to blackmail US by threatening to pull out troops from Afgan border..so US and UK are trying to pacify India telling them that they will put pressure on Pak to do something.
    And you know what a bigger joke is? your slum dog cum president who told Larry King that no one from "his part of the country" were involved in the attack!!! What is his part of the country? his toilet seat??? It has not been 1 year since he killed his wife he was jumping all over Sarah Palin like a horny dog!! Barking dogs seldom bite, so don't just thump your chest just yet. When the fox has to die it runs towards the lion. That is what Pakistan is doing by pretending to pose as if it will go to war with India. If India attacks Pak will fold it's tail between its legs and run to US, like Nawaz sherif did during the Kargil war. We have beaten you in 4 wars, how may more beatings will it take for it to sink into your thick skull that Pakistan can NEVER beat India. Period!!

    Pakistan will disintegrate with in the next few years if they don't seek India's support in whacking them Jehadi SOB's. Baluchitan, NWFP, Sindh are all going to be independent countries and the Pak president can easily rule " his part of the country"

    Buddyinsfo you might try to bring friction among Indians by pitting people from different states against each other, but remember when it comes to any outside force we are all Indians first and we will Kick your Ass...

    This is like an ant taking on an elephant, if half the men in Punjab, Guj and Rajastan stand on the border and Pee; Pakistan will be washed away in a flood of Urine...If you poor people want to get killed, there are better painless ways than enrage India. So it is in Paks best interest to request India to come in clean up the terrorist camps which are now turning against Pakistan itself!!

    smisachu, if you use this kind of language, the tender, sensitive minds of the other IVians will get bruised.You'll be branded as a out-of-control maniac, who's lost his mental balance.

    Benazir was one of the level-headed politicians in Pakistan like her father, but she was deemed pro-western. Her father Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was charged with false conspiracies and hanged because he was one of the few secular leaders and held peace talks with India. She was ruthlessly murdered, what a loss!

    Good leaders don't stand a chance in Pakistan and the country is sure to disintegrate - its just a matter of time!!

    However, what buddysinfo says is right. India is not Israel. Its a land of weaklings and this Gandhi-Nehru doctrine is somewhere deep down in our DNA. Nenru was still chanting his favorite Hindi-Chini Bhai Bhai and reading the Panchsheel and romancing with Lady Mountbatten, when the Chinese back-stabbed India. I have nothing against the Chinese - they are progressive people, thousand times better than these bankrupt Pakistanis (who can't look beyond terrorism and bloodshed) and they have made gigantic industrial progress! This just goes to show how useless Nehru-Gandhi leadership has historically been!!

    On the other hand, his daughter Indira was a loose cannon, a dictator but being a lady - she had balls! What a shame!
    Rajiv Gandhi was another strong leader. I have always disliked the congress for its vote bank politics but I grant it to Rajiv Gandhi for catapulting India into the information age.
    The same Bofors gun over which everybody raised a big hue and cry (Bofors kickbacks) came to our rescue during Kargil.
    After Rajiv, the leadership has completely collapsed - no absolute majority, coalition goverments, hung parliaments, its a chaos.

    Look at buddysinfo and look at the dirty,hateful offline messages he has left people. Pure, unadulterated hatred. Some Indians are more interested in Thakre driving out North Indians, others are beating up Laloo for giving some jobs to Biharis (are Biharis not Indians??), the South vs the North, Tamil vs Hindi - rather than bandying together as Indians.

    And to top it all, some one starts some idiotic thread as to how America is going to disintegrate! We need to learn a lot from America and Israel, when it comes to nationalism!
    Everyone was united after 9/11, everyone supported war and if there is another attack on American soil, there will be another war in the middle east, make no mistake. The war comes first, the questions and the regrets come later..that is America! Its not a nation of Nehru and Gandhi, its a nation of Roosevelt, Truman and General Eisenhower!

    On the other hand we will argue till doomsday - whether India should go on war with Pakistan or not, create some Bollywood style drama , while the islamic savages come and violate our land at will. Its been happening since 1600 A.D, nothing new here. It will happen again, who cares!

    Peace!





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  • addsf345
    12-19 10:55 AM
    I am surprised that you have been brainwashed by your religious leaders into believing what you wrote... just to refresh your memory,,
    When Islam arrived in India, the Hindus welcomed the Muslims with open arms as brothers. In return Islam destroyed the entire Hindu civilization...over the years the followers of Islam killed over 100 million people. It has been documented that the largest genocide the world has ever witnessed was killing of over 100 millions hindus in the Hindukush region by Muslims. The muslim leaders �educated� Muslim men to rape Hindu women as this was a method to destroy the Hindu race. Infact raping Hindu women was part of what being a Muslim man was about! Temples were razed to the ground and villages were burned. Those who refused to convert to islam were either killed or raped if you were women. The reality is that islamic religious leaders wanted to destroy every religion from earth so that Islam the youngest religion in the world could prevail.Even today that is the aim of the islamic fanatics and cause of all the problems. Even in the recent past in this decade only.. the Taliban destroyed the Budha Statues in Afghanistan.. and people call this religion a religion of peace..., its a joke.

    Islam is a religion which does not even preach to treat your own wife with respect. Its a religion which teaches men to kill their wife incase they don't obey them. Even today women are treated like doormats and "things" of pleasure for men in this religion.

    Lets face it the fact is that Muslim community is now being cornered by the western world is because the violent front of the religion has become the face of Islam and the moderate religions and community in the world cannot take this anymore. That is the reason why the Muslim are suffering. Its like saying in Hinduism.. the Karma is catching up with you.

    Its sad that even today in India the muslim which is a minority community is holding the whole country back.. they continue to fight the hindus where ever they can and whenever they can in places like Kashmir and unfortunately the Indian leaders and Hindu community continue to follow the principle of Non Violence which is not working.

    The islam religion is not a religion of unification on the contrary the religion teaches the Muslims that non-Muslims are infidels and that they should be killed and that is the reason why Isalm was instituted through coercion and violence. So lets face Islam is everything but a religion of peace.. and yes I think the world is now waking up the violence of this religion and sooner or later the Islamic religion has to evolve into a moderate religion, failing which it will die its own death..

    'The jihadists are dragging us into the Middle Ages'

    December 19, 2008

    Reportage: Arthur J Pais
    Imagine the economic and social problems of Muslims in India is solved, Salman Rushdie said the other day; imagine the Kashmir problem is also solved; imagine too, the Israelis and Palestinians have made peace. Would al Qaeda and the various self-proclaimed jihadists "then put their guns down?"

    He has no illusions any such thing would happen, he said firmly.

    The jihadists are bent not only on "dragging us into the Middle Ages," he declared but are also planning on world domination. "It is all about power grabbing."

    Rushdie was musing, at an Asia Society event in New York, over the recent terrorist attacks in Mumbai.

    The terrorists were not really concerned what happened in Kashmir, he continued, and their action has to do with everything that overtook Sufi Islam in Pakistan and had it replaced by "fanatical Islam, an Arabised Islam."

    read more: http://specials.rediff.com/news/2008/dec/19slide1-understanding-the-mumbai-attacks.htm



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  • nogc_noproblem
    09-02 04:25 PM
    Why You Would Want To Run A Gas Station

    • You can raise prices every hour and everyone blames the government.

    • You can sell obsolete lottery tickets but it's okay--they lose anyway.

    • You always have the oldest dated milk in the cooler, and its the last one left, so they have to take it.

    • No matter what the question is from a customer, you cannot understand it.

    • You enjoy raising the prices on the pumps when these signs outside show the old prices.

    • You make sure that the receipts on the machines don't work so they have to come inside to get one and buy other items.





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  • easygoer
    01-08 12:28 PM
    Rayyan,

    You are a highly skilled person. Think objectively:

    1. This thread is not immigration related. It is a non-immigration thread that admins allow just as a communication platform among people and has nothing to do with IV.

    2. People can have their opinions. You really can't stop. It becomes objectionable when it is personal. Then, you report as Abusive link and moderators will take actions. I have reported couple of abusive language posts in past and action was taken in very short time.

    3. Please don't mix issues. Your efforts for enlightening people about immigration issues are appreciated. You should not leave because couple of threads are running that you don't like.

    My 2 cents to you, to bfadlia and everyone.

    My requests to all "Please end this discussion immediately". This is hurting our own people. There are no bad religion and good religion. We have seen over the time period whenever any relgion allowed their religion heads to dominate politics and day to day life (including Hindu, Christian in the past), they have created havoc. Every religion experienced this in the past. Please repect other's religion feeling and stop it. Let's concentrate on our main issue of immigration all together.



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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-05 01:49 PM
    A man was sitting alone in his office one night when a genie popped up out of his ashtray...
    ... and said, "And what will your third wish be?"

    The man looked at the genie and said, "Huh? How can I be getting a third wish when I haven't had a first or second wish yet?"

    "You have had two wishes already," the genie said, "but your second wish was for me to put everything back the way it was before you made your first wish. Thus, you remember nothing; because everything is the way it was before you made any wishes. You now have one wish left."

    "Okay," said the man, "I don't believe this, but what the heck. I wish I were irresistible to women."

    "Funny," said the genie as it granted his wish and disappeared forever. "That was your first wish, too!"





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  • mariner5555
    04-09 11:29 PM
    we may be thinking that the points below are a worst case scenario but according to the famous economist Roubini - this is a likely one.
    on the lighter side - if this really happens then even the mighty GC would finally become just a card.:rolleyes:
    --------
    1. We are experiencing the worst US housing recession since the Great Depression and this housing recession is nowhere near bottoming out. Housing starts have fallen 50% but new home sales have fallen more than 60% thus creating a glut of new –and existing homes- that is pushing home prices sharply down, already 10% so far and another 10% in 2008. With home prices down 10% $2 trillion of home wealth is already wiped out and 6 million households have negative equity and may walk away from their homes; with home prices falling by year end 20% $4 trillion of housing wealth will be destroyed and 16 million households will be in negative wealth territory. And by 2010 the cumulative fall in home prices will be close to 30% with $6 trillion of home equity destroyed and 21 million households (40% of the 51 million having a mortgage being underwater). Potential credit losses from households walking away from their homes (“jingle mail”) could be $1 trillion or more, thus wiping out most of the capital of the US financial system.
    2. In 2001 it was the corporate sector (10% of GDP or real investment) to be in trouble. Today it is the household sector (70% of GDP in private consumption) to be in trouble. The US consumer is shopped out, saving-less, debt burdened (debt being 136% of income) and buffeted by many negative shocks: falling home prices, falling home equity withdrawal, falling stock prices, rising debt servicing ratios, credit crunch in mortgages and – increasingly – consumer credit, rising oil and gasoline prices, falling employment (now for three months in a row), rising inflation eroding real incomes, sluggish real income growth.
    3. The US is experiencing its most severe financial crisis since the Great Depression. This is not just a subprime meltdown. Losses are spreading to near prime and prime mortgages; they are spreading to commercial real estate mortgages. They will spread to unsecured consumer credit in a recession (credit cards, auto loans, student loans). The losses are now increasing in the leveraged loans that financed reckless and excessively debt-burdened LBOs; they are spreading to muni bonds as default rates among municipalities will rise in a housing-led recession; they are spreading to industrial and commercial loans. And they will soon spread to corporate bonds – and thus to the CDS market – as default rates – close to 0% in 2006-2007 will spike above 10% during a recession. I estimate that financial losses outside residential mortgages (and related RMBS and CDOs) will be at least $700 billion (an estimate close to a similar one presented by Goldman Sachs). Thus, total financial losses – including possibly a $1 trillion in mortgages and related securitized products - could be as high as $1.7 trillion.



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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-22 03:08 PM
    One day, a teacher, a garbage collector, and a lawyer all died and went to heaven.

    St. Peter was there, having a bad day because heaven was getting crowded. When they got to the gate, St. Peter informed them that there would be a test to get into Heaven: They each had to answer a single question.

    To the teacher, he said, "What was the name of the ship that crashed into an iceberg and sunk with all its passengers?"

    The teacher thought for a second, and then replied: "That would have been the Titanic, right?" St. Peter let him through the gate.

    Next, St. Peter turned to the garbage man, and figuring that heaven didn't really need all the stink that this guy would bring in, decided to make the question a little harder. "How many people died on the ship?"

    The garbage man guessed 1228, to which St. Peter said, "That happens to be right. Go ahead."

    St. Peter then turned to the lawyer. "What were their names?"





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  • Gravitation
    03-25 01:25 PM
    Good Points. I like discussing real-estate; I'm deeply interested in it. So in that spirit of having a good conversation, here's my response:

    I completely agree that buying a house is a long term move. But I disagree with some of the points:

    1. Does rent always go up? No, my rent did not go up at all during the real estate boom as the number of ppl renting was low. Recently my rent has gone up only $75 pm. (love rent control!!!) So in 5 years, my monthly rent has gone up a total of $125 per month

    Real Estate market is always local. Unlike the market for -let's say- rice, which can be transported from one place where it's abundant to where it's scarce easily. Real Estate remains where it is. It's also subjected to a lot of local laws, municipal regulations etc. So, any discussion we have here will NOT apply to every single location. You have to research your own local regulations/market etc.

    If you have rent control, it significantly changes the picture. It usually doesn't make sense to buy if you have rent control.


    2. I hear about tax rebate for homeowners. But what about property tax?

    Yep, you pay it when you own a house. And yes, you pay it when you rent (it's rolled into your rent). The difference is that when you own, it's tax-deductible; if you pay it as part of your rent, it's not.


    3. What about mortgage insurance payments?

    You don't pay PMI, if you put down 20%. Not a bad idea to save that much. It forces one to learn financial planning and forward thinking.


    It is a misconception that 5-10 years is the cycle for real estate.

    Here's how in a sane real estate market the cycle should work:

    No population influx in your area or there is no exodus from your area:
    Your real estate ownership should be 25 years because that's when the next generation is ready to buy houses.

    However, in places like SF Bay Area/new York/Boston where there is continuous influx of young working ppl this cycle can be reduced to 15-20 years.

    Over the last few years, nobody thought of longevity required to make money in RE. Now that it is tanking ppl are talking about 5-10 years. Unless you are buying in a booming place, your ownership has to be 15+ years to turn a real profit.


    Profit/Loss is not what the primary residence is for.


    This is purely the financial aspect of ownership. If you have a family I think its really nice to have a house but you don't have to really take on the liability. You can rent the same house for much less. But if you are clear in your mind that no matter what I am going to live in XYZ town/city for the next 20 years, go for it.


    You can rent for less, now, but how about later? You're assuming rents don't go up, but they do. One of my neighbors pays $250 per month in loan payment for a house he bought 20 years ago (property tax and insurance adds $550 more). It was a big payment then. Now it's almost live living for free. If he rented this he'd by paying $2500 at least. Again, if you don't plan to settle down, don't buy. But owning your primary residence is the first step towards prosperity.


    As a sidenote for Indians. We all have either aging or soon to start aging parents. The way I see it, caring for aging parents is a social debt that we must pay back. This will need me to go back to India. Therefore, if you feel you need to care for your parents, don't commit to a house.
    Yes, if you're planning to go back... don't buy.



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  • bkarnik
    08-06 06:23 PM
    Hillary Clinton and her driver were cruising along a country road one evening when suddenly an aging cow loomed large in front of the car. The driver tried to avoid it but couldn't - the aging bovine was struck and killed.

    Hillary told her driver to go up to the farmhouse and explain to the owners what had happened. She stayed in the car making phone calls to lobbyists. About an hour later the driver staggered back to the car with his clothes in disarray. He was holding a half-empty bottle of expensive wine in one hand, a rare, huge Cuban cigar in the other and was smiling happily, smeared with lipstick.

    "What happened to you," asked Hillary?

    "Well," the driver replied, "the farmer gave me the cigar, his wife gave me the wine, and their beautiful twin daughters made mad passionate love to me."

    "My God, what did you tell them?" asked Hillary.

    The driver replied, "I just stepped inside the door and said, I'm Hillary Clinton's driver and I've just killed the old cow. The rest happened so fast I couldn't stop it..."





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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?�



    more...


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  • posmd
    07-08 04:56 PM
    Nice to hear you are still in the background UN.





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  • SunnySurya
    08-05 03:25 PM
    ....





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  • mariner5555
    03-24 11:13 PM
    This is total BS.
    Bashing Illegal immigrants for housing market crash and accusing entire race of being theives is nothing new among right wing anti-immigrant "Hatriots"
    But there really isn't co-relation between illegal migration and housing crash.. if anything, migrants are also first time buyers and they support prices towards to lower end market and stop entire lower-middle class neighbourhoods from becoming what Detroit or Youngstown have become..
    So no need to parrot hateful propoganda here.. lets stick to the point..
    o.k. ..I had copied comments from other readers and I have removed the unnecessary remarks ..The only reason I am keeping the remaining portion is to show how many of the first time buyers (I guess Americans) feel. so if lot of people think like the above then housing will take longer to stabilize. (BTW I agree there is no relation between immi and housing crash - nor is it implied in the comments I had pasted). I guess sometimes it makes sense to read what other readers / natives feel about certain situations. a final thought (unless I have to respond to someone else's post) - everywhere I look (articles and in real life) - things are real bad in terms of real estate. will things improve - definitely but it may take long time for things to stabilize and hence it makes sense to do extra research before taking a plunge. for e.g at present I am staying in a rented town home - and I got the deal for $850 - the town homes are inside an apt complex in a good neighborhood. (you need to show income of atleast 3 times the rent to get a place here and many tenants are high tech guys). the same town home during boom time had rent of $1250 ..in other words - there are tons of deals due to excessive supply everywhere. one other important point was made by another person - this winter was harsh and hence people did everything to keep a roof above their head - wait till summer and you will see people literally walking away from their homes ...when u read posts like the above ..it makes sense to wait for some more time esp on H1 / EAD.





    malaGCPahije
    07-14 09:53 AM
    I am an EB2 I applicant and my PD became current this month. If I do not care, I wouldn’t even be checking out this thread. I understand your pain and frustration, I was stuck too for a long time in the old labor process before perm came.

    EB2 I people do not think EB3 I people are jealous. I do not think Rolling Flood is from India, let alone being an EB2 I applicant. He just rolled in thinking he can open a flood gate of arguments and counter-arguments, let’s just prove him wrong.

    I just hope that EB2I people (other than rolling whatever) show some concern for EB3I. Whatsoever is written in this forum, is THAT going to take the dates forward or backward? No it is not. If someone from EB3I is expressing some frustration, just empathize with him/her and let it be. We all are happy that EB2I dates moved forward. A lot of my friends are EB2 2006 and I have called each of them expressing my happiness. All I and other EB3 in this forum can expect is that there would be someone to fight with us and for us when all Eb2's get their GC.





    Macaca
    11-23 08:38 AM
    Tech trade groups combining for greater clout (http://www.mercurynews.com/search/ci_7538070?IADID=Search-www.mercurynews.com-www.mercurynews.com&nclick_check=1) TRADE ASSOCIATIONS PLANNING MERGER By Dibya Sarkar | Associated Press, 11/23/2007

    WASHINGTON - Relative newcomers to Capitol Hill lobbying, technology giants with sometimes differing agendas are figuring out what oil and pharmaceutical companies have known for years: There's strength in numbers.

    Microsoft, Cisco Systems and Yahoo, among others, hope a merger of two major tech trade groups will increase their lobbying clout inside the Beltway.

    The industry's presence in Washington has long suffered, critics say, from lacking a unified force voice to lobby on fundamental issues, such as taxes, patent reform, immigration and trade, that affect tech companies of all stripes.

    Combining the Information Technology Association of America and the Government Electronics and Information Technology Association will create a "powerhouse" organization with "much more of a consolidated voice in the industry," said GEIA president Dan Heinemeier.

    Representing more than 380 companies and combined membership revenues of $8 million, it's the latest sign that the tech industry, currently represented by more than a dozen associations here, is growing up.

    It also reflects a better understanding of the importance of lobbying by an industry that long believed the practice was an unnecessary part of their business strategy.

    Software giant Microsoft, which is an ITAA member, only established a Washington office about a dozen years ago, while Google, which doesn't belong to either group, set up a Capitol Hill shop in 2005.
    While GEIA recently registered to lobby, ITAA spent $120,000 lobbying in the first half of 2007, according to federal disclosure forms.

    Of course, that's small potatoes compared with the $10.7 million spent by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America and the $1.6 million spent by the American Petroleum Institute during the same period.

    The merger creates a platform where diverse companies can "speak with both a louder voice and also . . . with a somewhat clearer voice," said Jon Korin, Northrop Grumman's vice president for strategic development and an ITAA board member. Northrop also is a member of GEIA.

    While the groups have some overlapping members and agendas, GEIA, founded in 1952, focuses on technical standards work and government technology market analysis. ITAA, which began in 1961, is a major public policy player working on broader technology business issues.



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