Tech giants have long sought more work visas, saying they enrich immigrants. But a reported Justice Department investigation raises the possibility Google, Apple and Yahoo, among others, colluded to hold down wages.
Silicon Valley companies have been known to compete fiercely for top talent, including immigrant engineers. When Google hired computer scientist and former Carnegie Mellon professor Kai-Fu Lee away from Microsoft, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was famously said to have thrown a chair across the room in anger.
Logically, then, if tech companies suppressed competition for H1-B visa holders, they were retarding immigrant income growth. By treating workers like so much property, they would have inhibited the very prosperity they claim to support.
Tech companies wouldn't talk to the Post about the investigation. But they should reverse that chance as soon as they can: The Valley's image as a center of immigrant wealth and opportunity is among its strongest political assets.