Tuesday, November 19, 2013

How Austerity Kills Innovation

A years-long spell of mass unemployment will be absolute poison to the entrepreneur class as a whole.
 
Ryan Cooper
 
If there’s one thing centrist elites love, it’s innovation, and Bill Keller is no exception. His latest column is all about it: how it’s great, and how to get more of it. He makes some good points, but rather misses the forest for the trees, and in the process reveals a contradiction inherent in elite thinking. Here’s a sample:
But for all the pop-culture enthusiasm, there are signs that our innovative dynamism is diminishing. The pace of new business creation, on a per-capita basis, has been in a slow but steady decline since the mid-1980s, according to the Kauffman Foundation, which studies entrepreneurial trends. That suggests that other essentials of a thriving innovative economy have been neglected.
This will  not be big news to loyal Monthly readers. But anyway, in Keller’s tale, what is holding back the innovative class? Here are his answers: the decline of our education system, insufficiently strict intellectual property rights, lack of start-up capital, neglect of infrastructure both physical and intellectual, and a crummy immigration system.

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