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Engineering an outcome

July 13, 2007

Re "So long, software jobs," editorial, July 10

Business leaders are always complaining that we have too many lawyers and not enough engineers, yet major law firms are now paying new grads $165,000 a year to start, while an engineer with a master's degree would be extremely lucky to earn even half that amount. If Bill Gates paid his software engineers at Microsoft like he does his army of lawyers or lobbyists for cheap labor, more Americans would be doing what it takes to get an engineering job at Microsoft.

The H-1B visa program, so beloved by Microsoft and many other companies, has morphed into a crass manipulation of what was once a fair high-tech labor market. Politicians use these visas as goodies to give to their corporate benefactors. Stagnant wages and job insecurity of American engineers and programmers are the collateral damage.

MARK A. MENDLOVITZ

Beverly Hills

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