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  • Macaca
    12-30 04:18 PM
    THE MAJORITY LEADER ( Reflecting on a rough year By Lisa Mascaro [(202) 662-7436 or] | Las Vegas Sun, Dec 30 2007

    Sen. Harry Reid settles into the chair by the fire in his majority leader's office that is so stately and grand it looks like something Las Vegas would create if ever a faux Washington were added to the Strip.

    The first snow of the season has fallen outside his second-floor window, the Washington Monument framed by the sill. He sits close to the fireplace because his neck is stiff from doing his morning push-ups too quickly. Reid still does 120 push-ups and 200 sit-ups each day, but he has condensed his yoga into fewer sessions because there just isn't time. Now, a few days after his 68th birthday, the wear of the job has settled into normalcy.

    It's been a long year of long days and nights here, the first time Democrats have been in charge of Congress in 12 years.

    On this day alone he hosted a breakfast for a Henderson Democrat running for Congress, met with the White House over the budget stalemate, welcomed a group of Nevada real estate officials concerned about the mortgage crisis - and ran the floor of the U.S. Senate.

    Moving to the majority leader's job this year, after all those years as a leader of the minority, has been "the difference between playing first base for the Yankees and playing it for Basic High School."

    Democrats are ending this year downtrodden after the high of sweeping into power following the 2006 election. Congressional approval ratings are at historic lows - lower than those of the unpopular president. Though many of their campaign promises became law, much more of the Democratic agenda remains unfulfilled.

    Reid repeatedly says he feels good about the work he's done this year. Running the Senate, he says, is not as enjoyable as watching the grandkids play ball, but "it's been a tremendously fascinating, interesting year for me."

    Days after the interview in his office, however, he would concede that "I share the frustration" of having Democratic priorities blocked.

    Nevada's first majority leader was barely that, with the Senate thinly divided 51-49. Democrats may have come to Washington believing they had a voter mandate for a new direction, but Republicans had a different opinion. With such a slight majority, Reid's chamber became the place where so much of the Democratic agenda came to die.

    The leader on the House side, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, began 2007 with a bold 100-hours agenda, crafted without Reid's knowledge or input. Democrats should have known that nothing passes that quickly in the slower-moving Senate. Any momentum gained by the legislative flurry would soon be lost.

    Indeed, the bills arrived in the Senate with a thud.

    Senate Republicans soon gave Reid a taste of the partisanship he had dished out in the past and blocked every move. Grand plans for a new energy policy, for example, became skeletons of their original intent. More filibusters were conducted this year than ever in Senate history.

    President Bush, whose own ratings reached all-time lows, asserted himself in a way unexpected for an executive with so little clout and whose party was out of power. His willingness to wield the veto pen for the first time in his presidency created an incentive and a safety net for Republicans to obstruct the Democratic agenda.

    Reid calls Bush the "most stubborn" official he has ever known.

    In this environment, the year became one when politics, not policy, seemed to matter most.

    Both sides appeared to abandon any attempt at forming consensus and concentrated on laying a foundation for the 2008 elections. Democrats will say they need to win more Senate seats to accomplish their goals; Republicans will say voters should be wary of Democrats running Washington.

    Could a leader other than Reid have achieved a better outcome? Why was he unable or unwilling to get Republicans on board? When he couldn't break through the partisan gridlock, should he have tried to be nicer - or meaner?

    Thomas E. Mann, a constitutional scholar at the Brookings Institution, was among those reluctant to grade Reid on this year alone. Wait and see how Reid performs in coming years, especially with a new president, Mann said.

    "I would say incomplete," he said of this year's performance. "The test of Harry Reid's leadership lies ahead."

    What he brings to the job

    Late one night in the Senate this fall, Reid is about to announce that an agreement has been reached to move forward on the Farm Bill after weeks of legislative gridlock. Into the chamber walks a farm state Democrat, Sen. Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas. He pulls her aside. The two stand face to face. One of his hands is on her left shoulder, the other is on her right. She nods, telling him thank you.

    That kind of personal interaction with every member of his caucus is what Democratic senators love most about Reid.

    He is clearly not the most charismatic public face for the party. His first impression on many voters came election night, when the diminutive Reid rambled a soft-spoken speech onstage at the Democrats' victory party.

    Rush Limbaugh dismisses him as "Dingy Harry." When Reid's whispery voice breaks through, it's often spitting an arrow that gets him into trouble - calling Bush a "loser" and a "liar," saying the Iraq war "is lost," deriding Republican senators as "puppets" of the White House.

    As majority leader, future president Lyndon Johnson towered over his colleagues, physically and emotionally, finding their vulnerable buttons and pushing hard, historians tell us. But as majority leader Reid more resembles Mike Mansfield or Bob Dole, a senator among senators - even if, as Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer wrote in his book, the former boxer will kneecap anyone who crosses him.

    Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Edward Kennedy explained that at the regular Tuesday policy luncheons, when Reid lays out the week's goals for Democratic senators, "people fall in line and support them, because he has done a lot of work prior to that time in listening and giving people an opportunity to be heard."

    Kennedy says Reid builds consensus better "than any leader that I can remember in my time."

    But even this party unity was no match for the Republicans in the Senate who held together just as tightly, refusing to cave to the Democratic agenda.

    Republican Sen. Mel Martinez, the former Republican National Committee chairman who crossed the aisle to try to broker an immigration deal this year, said Reid simply doesn't have enough votes to steamroll the minority.

    "We have 49 - if we were a minority of 39 you could do that," Martinez said. "At some point it's going to have to dawn on him that Americans are going to want to see things getting done."

    Martinez says Reid is more intent on protecting his members from difficult votes than giving Republicans a chance to shape legislation that could pass.

    Only in the final weeks of the session did the backlog of bills pass, as Democrats faced the prospect of ending their first year in legislative gridlock. Everything that arrived on the president's desk was a compromise - energy policy, domestic spending, funding for the Iraq war.

    "The way you accomplish things in the Senate is in the middle," said the Republican leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. McConnell said his strategy was standard business for the Senate: "Either to shape things that we thought were headed in the right direction and there was a possibility of meeting in the middle, or if we thought it was completely inappropriate for the country, to stop it altogether."

    Like all strategies, the one Democrats have chosen is a gamble. Voters tell pollsters they are more likely to vote for Democrats than Republicans next year. But will voters stand by Reid if 2008 is branded as a do-nothing year?

    When Republicans called Democrats the do-nothing Congress this year, Democrats spat back that Republicans were the Grand Obstruction Party.

    Schumer, who heads Senate Democrats' reelection efforts, likes to say Republicans are filibustering themselves out of office.

    Democratic senators will fan out to their states in 2008 and say that Democrats stood together for initiatives popular with Americans - ending the war, providing health care for kids, curbing global warming.

    "People know what we believe in, what we stand for, they know the Republicans are blocking us and that's OK," Reid said.

    He believes his party will pick up at least four seats next year. If so, he would be in striking range of the 60 votes needed to pass legislation.

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  • suavesandeep
    06-25 01:32 PM
    I guess i am old school. I like to live within my means and own things in the true sense of owning. Read a lot about leveraging and know if not used correctly you get into financial meltdown we have now.

    I know really smart people make lot of money using this leveraging model. I wish you the best and hope you own 10 homes so that you can donate some to your grandchildren also.

    I will be happy owning one home. And hope to repay it off quickly so i dont have any BANK to answer to. Having a peace of mind that one day when i pay off the home nobody can kick me off my home for any reason is PRICELESS to me.

    Owning 10 homes so that you can donate to your grandkids may be PRICELESS to you. I wish you the best.

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  • validIV
    06-05 05:43 PM
    Just an offtopic response, I used to trade options, which is far better than margin. Options give you 5 to 20 times leverage. And if you want more leverage, futures can give you 100x more. But my experience is the higher the leverage the more risk you are willing to take which is BAD. I have lost over 60k net (excluding fees) in options trading which I claim every year (max of 3k). I will admit I have had some amazing trades (SNPS, Dollar General and many others) giving me 10-12 times in returns, but I lost more than I made. I used to use IB and Tradeking.

    Probably not very relevant - but you can get a lot of leverage if you have the stomach for it by opening a brokerage account with 40k (your initial downpayment). A good semi-professional one would be IB ( Margin accounts give a 3X/4x leverage any day. Buy a few interest rate, currency or commodity swaps with that - and your leverage can reach stratospheric levels. I know I dont have the stomach for that.

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  • bfadlia
    01-08 10:43 AM
    I have use the word bastard after you used for Jews. You have said, your war will end till Jews are defeated. So get my reply. Don't cry!!!!! foul !!!

    read your comments:

    Originally Posted by bfadlia
    I agree, the conflict discussed here is a political conflict. It could have been resolved much easier if all sides stopped looking at it with the religious-end-of-times lens (jews: nile-to-euphrates empire belonged to us 3000 years ago, christians: jews from all over the world must be transfered back there for the messiah to return.. and muslims: end of times won't come until jews fight the muslims and we beat them)..

    Originally Posted by bfadlia
    you called all non christian nations "satanic nations that will be wiped out", called 95% of egyptians war children, brain washed bastards and terrorists.. u r right, u don't use vulgar language, only racist hate speech..

    you have serious language comprehension issues.. I used bastards on palestinians not jews in a post where i was defending palestinians, so i was being sarcastic
    and in the other post you refer to, i was criticizing jews, cristians and muslims for taking the end of time scenarios too seriously and applying it now.. no ones knows we are the the end of times anyway.. and even if that in some way offends you, that doesn't make name-calling all egyptians any less racist


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  • unseenguy
    06-23 05:30 PM
    I am shocked to see the HOA cost in CA, Why is HOA so high there, Obviously CA does not get snow like East coast for 4-6 months, so snow mowing and salt sprinkling(which is expensive) is ruled out.
    Just to mow lawn, gardening and keeping tab on overall resident development you pay $400/month..Thats ridiculously high...BTW,I am not from CA, excuse my ignorance.

    There is more emphasis on landscaping and higher labor rates and other community amenities and staff. However, I think, 400 is a bit expensive HOA. 250-300 is more like it in CA. If you are paying 400 per month for HOA, you might want to consider a 650K house with no HOA, pays better deal in the long run. I personally despise houses with high HOA fees. The HOA tends to be the government of your community and not only you pay more, your rights as homeowners get diminished.

    Also the condos in cupertino & townhomes are like 3 storied, you spend a lot of life on staircase instead of enjoying the comfort. Its good if you are young but do not work out a lot :) but not really a very good living style in my opinion.

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  • nk2006
    10-07 11:40 AM
    Asain-Americans seems to favor Obama overwhelmingly as per this survey. its interesting to read the survey - these immigrants who have gone thru the process themselves and might have friends/relatives in the process - didnt mention immigration as one of their important topic to decide on the vote. Understandably economy is the top topic but was expecting to see immigration atleast behind economy.


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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-05 01:59 PM
    We've been trying to save money because the mortgage payments ...

    ... were pretty tough to work with. I don't reckon I drink too much beer, maybe a carton on weekends with the boys, but she told me we couldn't afford beer anymore. Well, it was tough, but I quit.

    Then the credit card statement came in, with $150 spent on cosmetics. So I asked how come I had to give up stuff but she didn't. She said she needed the make-up to look pretty for me.

    I told her that was what the beer was for.

    I don't think she's coming back.

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  • GCapplicant
    07-13 09:53 AM
    The EB3 situation is really bad...I have the calling part too...and its stressful to see EB3I not having any good hopes though.

    I am in signing this letter.

    its worth a try.Atleast they will come know there is Eb3 stuck for many years beacause of the backlog.the old applications have not been considered at all.

    I request even EB2 to support this cause and help.


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  • gsc999
    08-15 12:41 PM
    A comprehensive look at Lou Doub, his past, his present and his future ( ;-) please see quote below for future...)

    "CNN president Jonathan Klein refused The Nation's requests for an interview, but he has told the New York Times that "Lou's show is not a harbinger of things to come at CNN."

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  • validIV
    06-25 01:46 PM
    I couldn't agree more. My first home is almost fully paid off. Peace of mind is a great thing.

    I will be happy owning one home. And hope to repay it off quickly so i dont have any BANK to answer to. Having a peace of mind that one day when i pay off the home nobody can kick me off my home for any reason is PRICELESS to me.

    It's not for my grandkids. Its for my wife and my kids when I retire.

    Owning 10 homes so that you can donate to your grandkids may be PRICELESS to you. I wish you the best.


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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-28 10:07 PM
    Married for Money:

    "It's just too hot to wear clothes today," Jack says as he stepped out of the shower. "Honey, what do you think the neighbors would think if I mowed the lawn like this?"

    "Probably that I married you for your money," she replied.

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  • bugmenot
    09-27 07:05 PM
    The immigration issue is controlled by the members of the senate and house, the president has little control over it, Bush has been pro immigration but that wasn't enough for him to get what he wanted, he couldn't even increase the h1b's that he kept publicly talking about.

    I doubt a democratic president would do any better.


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  • newbie2020
    08-06 04:36 PM
    People will jump to the ship which goes faster...Thats the bottom line, If tomorrow for some reason EB3 ship moves faster than EB2 ship then you would also jump your EB2 Ship and go to EB3 ship as most other people including me. Focus your energy on some positive action items which benefit the community.

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  • msp1976
    02-16 10:45 AM
    If your proposed legislation is defeated, there is frequently another opportunity to reintroduce it. Don�t be discouraged. Often it takes several tries to pass a measure, especially one that seeks to bring about an important change.

    If you win, do not get complacent. Monitor implementation and make sure your legislation is fully funded. Look out for opposition attempts to undo or diminish your victory by trying to repeal your legislation, filing litigation to overturn it, or seeking regulations to significantly weaken its implementation.


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  • kumar1
    12-17 05:17 PM
    I can see tabletpc standing naked!!!!!:D

    Rupees conversion rate:

    Someone started this very immigration related thread:

    Someone is talking about Hotels....


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  • subba
    12-27 12:57 PM
    Especially considering Sen. Cornyn seems to be opposed to some of the provisions being discussed for the illegal immigrants.


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  • senthil1
    04-07 10:20 AM
    Under what provisions they will make H1b harder? Main test H1b can be hired when there is no US worker is available. That is reasonable. Today's situation it is easy to prove that no USA worker is available. Some restrictions will make TCS and Wipro to hire US workers(If you get gc you are US worker) with market pay also apart from H1b. The companies which will run completely on H1b will not grow. Only bad economy H1b persons cannot be hired. Because of this law H1b hiring may be reduced by 50%. But I think bill may not get much support. But some point of time may be after a few years it will come(may be they may stop completely H1b) as H1b hiring is in so crazy level. It is better to control now by some way instead of getting backlash after some years. Now most of H1b persons are having view that US citizens are lazy and lethargic and not employable. That is not true. Most of Desi companies are following law. But some sections of law is making mess so it needs to be corrected.
    It’s very easy and hip to blame everything in this world on desi companies but they are not completely to blame here. Consider this scenario. They are two ways to get H1,
    1. You are already in US, i.e. converting from F1 to Practical training, Practical training to H1. This is an easy option for companies because you are already in US so they come to campus interviews or fly you to there company headquarters for the interviews.
    2. Now what about the people who are outside the US. How are companies going to interview them, screen them and select them, you cannot give a job to somebody outside US by interviewing them on the phone, you cannot fly them to US for interview because it is costly and has visa issues. Desi companies have an advantage here because they are interviewing the people in India and those people are working for them before they file H1. Not just big desi companies like TCS, infosys, wipro etc take this route but even American companies like IBM operating in India are do this. Big companies like Microsoft, Intel, and Cisco do not get first crack at these filings but the labor pool is increased so they do have a chance to hire them when they come to US. People transfer all the time between companies when they are on H1. I know a lot of people who are working in Cisco and Microsoft who came to US on H1 through desi companies but later on accepted full time positions in Microsoft, Cisco and other companies.

    Now I am not defending desi companies nor did I ever work for desi company but I am telling you the reality. Even mom and pop desi companies are doing some service by providing a medium for employees and employers through consulting services. The only and biggest gripe I have against desi companies is that they are exploiting the h1 employees by keeping bigger margins on the H1 hourly rate.

    Now if you want to reform H1, you can do things like give H1 based on credentials like UK does, you get points based on years of experience, education level (Masters, phd, bachelors etc) and give the people the ability to change jobs at will during the period of H1, that will eliminate a lot of exploitation and make it easier for companies to hire people on h1. This will eleminate some mom and pop desi consulting companies which are the middle men.

    The law makers (democrats) who introduced this so called law to reform H1 are actually trying to kill H1 in the name of reform. They don’t have the backbone to come out and say H1 should be abolished but instead they are taking the back door to kill the H1 through these draconian measures.

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  • CreatedToday
    01-06 05:39 PM
    Oh! you were so saddened and shocked about the killings happening far way!
    And you condemned the killings of innocent people in Mumbai by Pak terrorists (Though I checked and didn�t see any post from you in that thread)

    Where you shocked when religious fanatics attacked and killed poor tribals in Orissa? The government itself accepted that 50,000 people fled the villages to forest? Even nuns were raped. These are not reported by CNN/Fox, but by all mainstream news media in India.

    OR you get shock only when people of your faith are involved, ONLY when they get killed (and NOT when they go on a killing spree)?

    I am not angry or anything. I am just sitting quitely, surfing net and enjoying my evening coffee.

    But i was so shocked when i read about school bombing and innocent school kids being murdered within seconds.

    If you have kids then you will realize how hard it is to loose kids. Kids are innocent and wonderful thing, but these murderers are not sparing even kids.

    So called peace loving nations and so called peace loving leaders and sitting and watching this massacre quitely. Thats what hurts me most.

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  • guchi472000
    03-24 01:50 PM

    I dont know whether its a good sign or bad sign. I scanned and send this letter to my company and attorney.GURUS and EXPERTS pls help me!!!!!

    Request for Evidence

    The office is unable to complete the processing of your application without further information. Please read and comply with the request below, then submit the evidence to above address. Include the copy of this letter and place the gold sheet on the top of your documents.

    Submit the letter of your employment attesting to your offer of proposed employment. This letter should be written on the company�s official letterhead, citing the date you began working; if the position is permanent and full time; what the position is; the position that you currently hold for the company(if any) ; and the salary offered.

    You must submit this request in 30 days from the date of this letter. Failure to do so may result in the denial of your application.

    Officer # 11**

    01-10 04:42 PM
    With Israel on the offensive and so many jihadis getting whacked - don't you think that there'll be a serious shortage of virgins in jihadi heaven :D

    they dont need virgins man....:p

    08-06 04:54 PM
    We are in a letter campaign mode and we can write something like this :-)


    Atlanta, Georgia
    September 13, 1970

    Billing Department
    Shell Oil Company
    P.O. Box XXXX
    Tulsa, Oklahoma 74102

    Dear Sir:

    I have been a regular customer of the Shell Oil Company for several years now, and spend approximately $40.00 per month on Shell products. Until recently, I have been completely satisfied with the quality of Shell products and with the service of Shell employees.

    Included in my most recent statement from your department was a bill for $12.00 for a tire which I purchased at the Lowell I. Reels Shell station in McAdenville, N.C. I stopped at this station for gasoline and to have a timing malfunction corrected. The gasoline cost $5.15; eight new plugs cost $9.36; labor on the points $2.50. All well and good.

    Earlier in the day I had a flat tire, which the attendant at the Lowell I. Reels station informed me that he was unable to fix. He suggested that I purchase a tire from him in order that I have a spare for the remainder of my journey to Atlanta. I told him that I preferred to buy tires from home station in Atlanta, but he continued to stress the risk of driving without a spare. My reluctance to trade with an unknown dealer, even a Shell dealer, did not discourage him and finally, as I was leaving, he said that out of concern for my safety (my spare was not new) and because I had made a substantial expenditure at his station, he would make me a special deal. He produced a tire ("Hits a good one. Still has the tits on it. See them tits. Hits a twenty dollar tar.") which I purchased for twelve dollars and which he installed on the front left side for sixty-five cents. Fifty miles further down the highway, I had a blowout.

    Not a puncture which brought a slow, flapping flat, nor a polite ladyfinger firecracker rubberburpple rupture (pop); but a howitzer blowout, which reared the the hood of my car up into my face, a blowout, sir, which tore a flap of rubber from this "tire" large enough to make soles for both sandals of a medium sized hippie. In a twinkling, then, I was driving down Interstate 85 at sixty miles per hour on three tires and one rim with rubber clinging to it in desperate shreds and patches, an instrument with a bent, revolving, steel-then-rubber-then-steel rim, whose sound can be approximated by the simultaneous placing of a handful of gravel and a young duck into a Waring Blender.

    The word "careen" does no justice whatever to the movement that the car then performed. According to the highway patrolman's report, the driver in the adjoining lane, the left hand-- who, incidentally, was attempting to pass me at the time-- ejaculated adrenelin all over the ceiling of his car. My own passengers were fused into a featureless quiver in the key of "G" in the back seat of my car. The rim was bent; the tits were gone; and you can f--k yourself with a cream cheese dildo if you entertain for one moment the delusion that I intend to pay the twelve dollars.

    Sincerely yours,

    /s/ T.B.T.

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