Friday, May 06, 2005
U.S. losing its lead, "Very Dangerous" -- Bill Gates
In a recent appearance, Bill Gates said,
Well, there's no doubt that the United States' relative position, even if we do all the right things, will decline, and as was said, that's not necessarily such a bad thing, the fact that the world is getting richer and the people who have been quite a bit behind are catching up faster than we're leading from the top. That's OK.*snip*
The problem that the U.S. has is this decline in interest in the sciences . . . means that our relative portion will shrink dramatically more than it should. And it's very dangerous, because you get this reaction, you can get this cycle that, "OK, the world is very competitive, let's cut back on trade; the world is very scary, let's cut back on visas."
And the whole idea of the H1B visa thing is, don't let too many smart people come into the country.
[I]f you looked at the rate of improvement of Beijing, Shingwa, Indian Institute of Technology, you'd also be very impressed that they had moved from really just educating people to now starting to play in the research area, starting to make contributions there. So we've got to maintain our relative position. That's the only reason why salaries can be so much higher in the United States than they are elsewhere.We're talking research, which is more Richard Florida than H1B. In the same program, Shirly Tilghman, president of Princeton University said,
We have a really failing K-12 education system . . . too often, by the time [teenagers] get to us, they are math-phobic, they're science-phobic, despite the fact that I'm fully convinced many of them have the talents to become great scientists. And the consequence of this is we have been increasingly dependent upon attracting students from outside the United States to American universities, where they come, and they excel.I've got it! Let's call it, "No child propelled ahead."
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