Sunday, June 17, 2007

What about 1952?

An article titled Tech CEOs Try To Influence Innovation Policies Of Presidential
appearing on Techweb on 13 June 2007 contained the following quotation, attributed to Bruce Mehlman, executive director of the Technology CEO Council:

"Not since 1928 has there been a presidential election where no
incumbent president or vice president was on the ticket."

IPBiz suggests Mehlman review the election of 1952 with Eisenhower/Nixon defeating Stevenson/Sparkman, none of whom was an incumbent president or vice-president. [Truman/Barkley were in office at the time of the election. These facts are common enough to find on wikipedia.]

Members of the council, who ought to know more history, include Joe Tucci, CEO of EMC; Paul Otellini, President and CEO of Intel; Ed Zander, Chairman and CEO of Motorola and current council chairman; Michael Dell, Chairman and CEO of Dell; Mark Hurd, Chairman, President and CEO of Hewlett-Packard; Joseph McGrath, President and CEO of Unisys; William Nuti, President and CEO of NCR, and Sam Palmisano,
Chairman, President and CEO of IBM.

In case you were wondering, the prime interest seems to be about relaxing visa requirements to bring in more foreign workers; the article notes:

The group hopes candidates will embrace policies that "promote
openness and inclusiveness to global markets," as well as help the nation attract
"the best and brightest workers" worldwide.

Along those lines, the technologysectorhas for several years, and
especially recently, been lobbying for changes that would allow more foreign
technology professionals to work in the U.S. under the nation's H-1B temporary
visa program, as well as streamline green card processes for many of those
workers to more easily gain permanent residency in the U.S.

IPBiz recalls the time Exxon Corporate Research declared half its Ph.D. researchers "surplus."

**As a point of trivia, prior to the election of George Bush in 1988, when was the last incumbent vice-president to be elected president? Nixon and Humphrey both lost.

**One IPBiz reader made the following remark:

Qualcomm is well known to push for an increase in H1B visas...yet they
are also a very picky company when it comes to hiring. As an example,
they may lobby to have an increase of 100 or 1000 H1B visas in the
computer science area....and then they hire 2 (maybe the best 2).
The net result is 98 or 998 more foreign computer science workers,
competing with US workers, lowering wages, .....and Qualcomm goes on
its merry way to lobby for more H1B visas.

The current Bush amnesty proposal, and guest worker program, does the
same thing. Rather than "outsourcing", it is "insourcing", but the
same net effect.

For those who remember, Jaffe and Lerner in Innovation and Its Discontents singled out Qualcomm as a company that made good use of patents. That did not take into account the H.264 mess and the Broadcom litigations.

***From ComputerWorld, November 2003-->

Bruce Mehlman, assistant secretary of Commerce for technology policy, next week will take the reins of an influential IT vendor consortium composed of CEOs from some of the IT industry's most powerful companies, including Dell Inc., Hewlett-Packard Co. and Intel Corp.

Mehlman's official start date as the new executive director of the Computer Systems Policy Project (CSPP) is Monday. Founded in 1989, the CSPP is one of the IT industry's leading advocacy organizations composed exclusively of high-profile CEOs, such as Michael Dell, HP's Carly Fiorina and Intel's Craig Barrett.
Mehlman talked with Computerworld about his two-and-a-half-year stint promoting the global competitiveness of the U.S. IT industry and spoke candidly about the relationship between government and industry.

Notwithstanding postbubble, postrecession, postcorporate-finance challenges, the IT sector remains poised for growth, job creation and leadership of the economy.

So what do you say to the tens of thousands of U.S. IT workers who can't find a job? We conducted a two-year study on education and training for the IT workforce. For IT workers to stay successful across an entire career, they're going to constantly need to learn, train and evolve their expertise. We need to move our training systems from reactive training for those who lost their jobs to proactive training for those who don't want to lose them.

***Aside, added June 28, 2007

An AP report notes the following of an entry on wikipedia:

Investigators are looking into who altered pro wrestler Chris Benoit's Wikipedia entry to mention his wife's death hours before authorities discovered the bodies of the couple and their 7-year-old son.

Benoit's Wikipedia entry was altered early Monday to say that the wrestler had missed a match two days earlier because of his wife's death.

A Wikipedia official, Cary Bass, said Thursday, June 28, that the entry was made by someone using an Internet protocol address registered in Stamford, Conn., where World Wrestling Entertainment is based.

An IP address, a unique series of numbers carried by every machine connected to the Internet, does not necessarily have to be broadcast from where it is registered. The bodies were found in Benoit's home in suburban Atlanta, and it's not known where the posting was sent from, Bass said.


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