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USA Today on Blueseed’s Brain Suction

December 5, 2011

The company got a big jolt last week when Peter Thiel, co-founder of the online payment service PayPal, announced he would invest in the project and lead the company’s search for funding. Thiel has been a strong proponent for other “seasteading” projects that aim to create autonomous ocean communities.

“Tech innovation drives economic growth, and we need more of both,” Thiel said in a statement. “Many innovative people have a really hard time getting visas, and Blueseed will help bring more innovation to California with a solution that is itself as innovative as it is clever.”

Story here. The left-wing American Center for Progress is somewhat positive:

 “If this doesn’t sound the alarms to policymakers that we need to revamp our immigration policies, nothing will.”

Ahhh, the power of jurisdictional arbitrage to change policy. I see you are progressing. But I wouldn’t worry about USG acting on your “alarm” anytime soon:

The House of Representatives on Tuesday passed a bill that ends the practice of giving out the same number of visas for high-skilled immigrants to all countries. That will make it easier for engineers and technology experts from India and China, who are aggressively pursued by U.S. companies, to enter the U.S.

The bill does not increase the total number of those visas — about 140,000 a year — and has been blocked in the Senate by Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, despite receiving bipartisan support in the House. Grassley worried that the bill does nothing to “better protect Americans at home who seek high-skilled jobs during this time of record high unemployment.”

Remember that about half of those 140,000 visas go to the spouses and children of the main applicants. So the number of the highly skilled is much lower than the official quota suggests. Blueseed ahoy!

One Comment
  1. Stuki permalink
    December 5, 2011 4:54 am

    Leave it to a bunch of politicians and bureaucrats to decide they are able to decide who is, and who is not, “highly skilled”, as well as how many of these determined to be highly skilled immigrants “the economy” needs.

    Good luck to the Blueseed guys. With all the vacant and underutilized land area in the world, it is a shame they have to brave the open ocean to pursue their vision, but let’s hope they can overcome the hardship and difficulties and succeed. The future will be a better place for it.

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