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Comment Re:"Labor Shortage" (Score 2) 477

You're not talking about a people shortage, you're talking about a training shortage.

Nope. Training can help people to learn about a new language, a new operating system, etc. But if people lack the talent for abstract thought, can't write something as simple as FizzBuzz in any language of their choice, then no amount of training is going to enable them to write complex software. The issue is that Universities do not want to tell people early that they lack talent and should switch to a different profession. Then they somehow finish their CS degree and cannot find a job.

Comment Re:"Labor Shortage" (Score 1) 477

And you believe that H1B IT workers brought in from India will satisfy this requirement? If so your experiences must have been vastly different from mine.

A very small number of them will, but most won't. H1Bs are abused, this needs to stop. H1Bs are not needed to bring in people with bad to mediocre skills. There is no shortage of those people. But not every usage of H1Bs is abusive and training can only help people that have the required talent.

Comment Re:"Labor Shortage" (Score 5, Insightful) 477

This is a myth

There is no shortage of people with an CS degree. But there is certainly a shortage of people that can actually write good code for non-trivial tasks. Proper CS is hard, you need to know tons of things about very different topics from algorithms and maths, to hardware details and interfaces. In addition problem solving and abstract thinking skills are required. Only a small fraction of people is able to do that and even if people have the talent, but are only into CS for the money, they will likely never learn enough.

The issue with H1B is that they are justified with the real shortage of really good people, but are used to keep wages down for people doing routine, trivial tasks that can be done even by people with only so-so education and skills.

Comment Re:What make it possibly for Germany to find Faceb (Score 1) 321

They still want to sell ads to German companies and to German customers. They also want to get paid for these ads. Volkswagen is a German company, but they still need to abide American laws while selling cars in the US. They could let their American subsidy go bankrupt and stop selling cars instead of paying the fine. But instead they will pay the fine and keep their access to the US market, because this is likely going to pay off in the long term. The same is likely true for Facebook. They don't like to employ a lot of people to check posts that were flagged for hatespeech because that takes a lot of time and reduces the amounts of ads they can sell to racists. But if they have to choose between operating slightly less profitable in Germany or not at all, they will likely go for slightly less profitable.

Comment Merkel has good approval ratings (Score 3, Interesting) 321

She's number 4 on the list of most popular politicians in Germany. Her party is still 14 percentage points in front of every other party. 50% think she is doing a good job.(Source) Yes, there is a vocal minority that hates her and calls the media "Lügenpresse" or lying press and vote for the new right-wight populist party "AfD"(12%) but far more people either support Merkel's party (36%) or center to left-wing parties (22%+10%+10%). And this isn't just MSM, many of the federal states of Germany had elections this year and while AfD had impressive gains, it is nowhere near a majority anywhere.

Comment Re:Trivial to stop the abuse (Score 1) 184

Some weighting depending on area could be a good idea, but needs additional measures to prevent abuse. Otherwise consulting companies will apply for H1Bs in a cheap area with very low wages and then move people to silicon valley soon after the visa has been granted. It also seems a good idea to give more H1Bs to areas with higher wages as these often indicate real shortages. Stricter limits on working hours are also needed, otherwise companies will cheat the system by paying a high monthly salary that is actually a low hourly salary because of the insane working hours demanded. One potential solution for that issue could be rules that require paid overtime for H1Bs and allow workers to sue for their overtime payment even several years later.

Comment Trivial to stop the abuse (Score 5, Interesting) 184

It seems trivial to stop the abuse: Stop the lottery and replace it with a list ordered by salary and give the visas to the applicants with the highest salaries. This would make hiring H1Bs expensive and limit their use to hiring rare very talented foreigners.

At the moment H1Bs are broken: The lottery often prevents bringing in highly talented people, while it doesn't matter too much for companies that just want a random cheap semi-skilled person. They just fill a lot of extra applications to get enough H1Bs granted.

Comment Re: Nobody knows yet (Score 1) 165

Exporting cars to the UK will be fine, even if we go back to a WTO-type deal and tariffs need to be paid. Germany exports cars to many countries outside the EU after all. But building cars in UK will be a big issue, as most suppliers are within continental Europe and while the overhead is reasonable for something as big and expensive as a car it isn't if you need to import many small car parts. The UK is too small to build their own complete car supply chain.

Comment Re:Meanwhile the EU is saying... (Score 1) 315

Exports from the UK to continental EU are ~13% of the GDP of the UK, while exports from continental EU to the UK are 3% of the GDP of continental EU. The impact of a BREXIT without a replacement trade deal on continental EU would be large but manageable. The impact on the UK would be much more massive. Continental EU can afford to play hardball in the negotiations, the UK can't. The UK absolutely needs a deal. Continental EU could even benefit in some areas, if no deal is done, as many international companies and banks would move their headquarters from London to Paris, Frankfurt, Dublin or Brussels. While continental EU also wants a good deal with UK because of their own economic interests, they will still make sure that the UK will be significantly worse off than without a BREXIT to prevent the next exit. If the UK will not accept free movement of people within the European Single Market than access to that market will also be limited in other regards, e.g.: free-trade with goods, but UK banks will not get access to the remaining EU. If they accept free movement of people they might get the deal that Japan wants them to get, but they will be likely have to contribute more to the EU budget than pre-BREXIT and will have less influence on EU regulations and standards while still being forced to adhere to them.

Comment Re:But they pay more to the EU than they get back. (Score 2) 517

The paperwork is really not that bad. You need to report your results and how you spend the EU money. Other research project would generate a similar amount of paper trail. As soon as your project is greenlight, the amount of documentation is fair given the big amounts of money most project receive. The bigger issue is that to get your project funded you need to send in big and really well written project proposals and your chances of actually getting money are rather small.

Comment Re:The real reason? (Score 4, Informative) 381

The issue is that it can be perfectly healthy to eat around 900,000 calories a year, but if you eat just around 15,000 calorie per year too much, people gain 5 pound a year. That is less than 2% over target, but a weight gain of 5 pound per year, will easily cause significant issues in the long term. 15,000 calories a year is just 41 calories a day or about an half an apple every day.
People do not have to eat significant amounts of food to become fat, even tiny amounts of extra food can easily add up to significant gains. Without a closed regulation loop it is basically impossible to eat just the right amount of food. If people have broken internal regulation loop, they build their own regulation loop and permanently count calories and watch their weight to adjust the amount of calories consumed. Unfortunately there is a lot of noise in weight measurements and a broken internal regulation loop often tries to counteract external regulation. It seems that an unhealthy diet can damage the internal regulation. Gastric bands seem to help because they help to readjust the internal regulation loop and not just make it harder to consume a lot of calories.

Comment Re:Warning: Healthy At Every Size supporter (Score 4, Insightful) 381

I think the main issue here is that HEAS and fat acceptance people are overdoing it. Some people can be slightly overweight but everything can be fine health wise and try to force them to a normal weight is more likely to make things worse. There are also some complaints against "fat shaming" that are justified. Obesity is a significant lifestyle-based health issue, but there are many others such as smoking, lack of sleep, drug abuse, risky sexual behavior or being underweight. Shaming should to be fair: If people ignore smoking but are shaming slightly overweight people and claim that shaming is based on health concerns instead of aesthetics that is just bigotry or bad information.

A little big of overweight (BMI 25-27), especially with low levels of abdominal fat is not a big health issue, it might even be slightly more healthy than normal weight. Something like BMI 27 to 30 is unhealthy most of the time, but on average still causes smaller health issues than smoking. But many people are significantly fatter than that. They almost always have health issues caused by their weight and should really lose weight and could easily do so by swapping some high calorie count items in their diet with vegetables.

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