• Smart Immigration

      Investors Paul Kedrosky and Brad Feld go after existing immigration laws in a Journal op-ed today .

      While fast-growing companies have long been the main source of new jobs and innovation, this country makes it outrageously difficult for immigrants to launch new companies here. This doesn't make any sense. After all, Google, Pfizer, Intel, Yahoo, DuPont, eBay and Procter & Gamble are all former start-ups founded by immigrants.

      Yet .... We send recent, foreign-born university science and engineering graduates back to their own countries after their student visas expire...

      For those who studied elsewhere, but who nonetheless want to bring their job-creating ideas here, American policies treat them...as a cross between deadbeats and queue-jumpers.

      For skilled foreigners hoping to work in the US in 2009, all 65,000 H-1B visas slots were filled on the first day of applications. It's not clear yet whether would-be immigrants will be turned away for 2010 -- the recession has discouraged applicants -- but the H-1B application process itself is restricting. Just doing all the paperwork often costs $5,000 per applicant.

      Kedrosky and Feld propose to allow entry to foreigners with more than $125,000 to start a business. Why not? They’re not likely to be freeloaders. Let them in.