Does David Brooks *really* not know that money-driven elections and the candidate requirement of kowtowing to financial elites, corporations and big business has produced exactly the lack of creativity and innovation he bemoans? Incredible.
But I thought liberal economists had discredited Marx's labor theory of value, which says economic growth comes from people? Wait a minute...if growth comes from increasing human bodies, that means technological innovation and investor management of surplus, I mean profits, isn't the driving force of growth or job creation! Oh no, I'm so confused. I thought capitalism produced value aside from human growth...oops! I just heard the microwave. Back to TV.
The purpose of capitalism is not innovation--it is to drive your competition out of business so that you can have a monopoly. If you need to innovate to do it, fine. But there are other ways to remove the competition.
Maybe the conclusion taken from this article is that we should LOWER taxes in California and the US, to encourage commerce, jobs and innovation.Of course companies are going to move operations and cash to the most economical channels. That's management's fundamental responsibility to its shareholders!This article implies far too much culpability on the part of Apple and American tech corporations, where the fault ultimately lies with legislators who don't understand economics. If you want more income to stream through your state, maybe consider making your tax rates more competitive.
"But success in business does not seem to convey any special insight into economic policy. Why?"One thing Krugman left out: businesses typically succeed by finding a way to corner, or at least dominate, a market. Often that results from innovation, but the innovation need not make society better; it just gives them some leg up on the competition. In the end, it is often about how to get a bigger slice of the pie than the competition.Government can sometimes work that way. It does, for example, when states race to the bottom in terms of deregulation, hoping thereby to attract more businesses. But government normally cannot succeed in the long term of trying to dominate a market. They succeed by ensuring that conditions for human flourishing (social as well as economic) exist. It is simply and fundamentally a different goal.
The phrase "changing the world" may excite us today but it is not the same as improving the world for generations to come. In twenty years or so, Samuels et al will understand how little their "crazy amazing stuff" changed the world. For example, the light bulb is nice - and LEDs are nicer. While artificial light (starting with fire) has enabled great innovations simply by existing, it has also enabled development of great evil. In this sense, innovation in commercial ventures is a zero-sum game.In our system, the balancing act between regulation and innovation is constant. One protects us from the other "going wild." When business changes its focus to profiting from creating a safer world rather than from innovation's adoption per se, regulation will be superfluous. Until then, business can expect to see "roadblocks" whenever product safety invites suspicion. Finally, let's recall that the innovation underlying ALL digital enterprise was funded directly by the taxpaying public and created specifically to improve public safety.
Happens surprisingly often in the Tech world as well. Engineers who are good at pitching ideas to upper management (MBA types in large companies) are often not that competent. Competent ones cannot sound as glib and confident as upper management thinks good engineers should sound.Not typically a problem in small tech companies that are run by the key engineers themselves. Which is why much of the innovation in tech happens in startups.There are exceptions where the founders have the wherewithal to run the company after it has grown (Steve Jobs, Larry Ellison, Bill Gates etc). These companies lose their spark once that one-of-a-kind founder leaves.
This is an interesting concept; I certainly would encourage an education that fostered innovation and creativity over one where our students only study to pass a bunch of standardized test. The only problem is, even in Finland the unemployment rate is at 8.5% - seems innovation is not a panacea. Along with"what you can do with what you know", there is also the all important, yet dreaded networking skills - who you know you always matter more. Just look around Youtube and see all the talented musicians who have not achieve fame.
We see these examples over and over yet why are these touted as American success stories of entrepreneurship and innovation when the moment they reach a certain level of success, the benefits of that success and innovation go elsewhere?