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rjmcmahon 12/5/2012 | 4:09:52 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? The problem isn't in innovation. Previous generations did actual *work*. They went to war in WW II. They built the water and sewer systems. They did the heavy lifting.

This generation of baby boomers have mostly demonstrate innovations in money printing, shadow banking, and constant self dealing. Now they're going go claim that if we issue a bunch of bonds to cover their pensions that it's going to magically create productivity. Right.

I say if these boomers want health care go to AIG and ask them to buy you a sugar pill and get out your grubby hands out of my pockets.
rjmcmahon 12/5/2012 | 4:09:52 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? This is going to be the political rhetoric from municipalities trying to cover their massive pension deficits. Jefferson County Alabama is likely the tip of the iceberg.
cw.774 12/5/2012 | 4:09:48 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? GoCowboys says...

"It is idiotic to indicate to associate this issue with a generation. In point of fact, this is a failure of governmental regulation and wall street greed.

No it's not idiotic. Take a ratio of 'performers' to under-acheivers. Dip into medicare #'s if you like, but we personally see rank and file boomers in nursing homes often. 99% I met are no Steve Jobs. Rather, they did drugs and became parents.. parents often too irresponsible to keep in touch with the very children who might help them (if they didn't screw up their kids too much).
But just as there is exceptions to every rule, there is Steve Jobs, et. al. and I assume you.
rjmcmahon 12/5/2012 | 4:09:47 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? According to Jared Diamond here are the causes of severe group failures and it's inability to solve a major problem.

o Group fails to anticipate the problem. Either because there is no precedent for it or by reasons of false analogy.
o Group fails to perceive the problem.
o Group does not to solve the problem. Sometimes due to conflict of interests where the benefits to the status quo serve them despite the cost to others. (Think today's PSTN oligarchs vs. tomorrow's needs for real broadband.)
o Rule of the elite and the elite insulating themselves from consequences of the problem creates no motivation to solve the problem. (Think bankers and Enron where no banker was ever held accountable hence over time even made things even worse.)
o An unwillingness to reappraise core values when conditions change and those values no longer serve to the benefit of the group. (Think fanatic political ideologues clambering to bring back Rush Limbaugh and things like homophobia.)

Maybe the following excerpt from Pamela Spiro Wagner can help the baby boomer generation to become a bit more responsible and to start making some *real* progress per their existence?

When you have forgiven whatever is of earth,
of sky, of water, whatever is named,
whatever remains nameless,
forgive, finally, your own sorry self,
clothed in temporary flesh,
the breath and blood of you
already dying.

Dying, forgiven, now you begin.

Let's see what happens.
cw.774 12/5/2012 | 4:09:46 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? sorry.. nothing personal..
The answer to this open question title is simply: yes.

their is no innovation built into the porkulus bill that I've heard of, hence my despair.

rj's proposal makes too much common sense for Gov't to process politically & understand
gocowboys 12/5/2012 | 4:09:46 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? Unbelievable...first it is a generational snub, then the predictable "just kidding". Then, "well we really do think that this is a generational problem."

The fundamental issue at hand is the loss of innovation, not Social Security, Medicare, or the price of pork bellies. The prior posts only serve to distract from the topic...and that is how to create economic growth based upon innovation?

I saw the subsequent post and this is more to the point. The government should create a entity to spur innovation by investment and access to technology. I am sure that there is quite a bit of government technology that can be commercialized. The government could provide early stage funding to launch companies (seed, A, B) and then the VC community could take over. The VCs seem to like later stage anyhow and many of them would not recognize innovation if it walked up and bit them. The government would hold equity in the company and that could be used to replenish the fund as companies reach an exit.

All you have to do is create a Microsoft or two to have a profound positive impact on the economy. GM and AIG are bottomless pits that will consume money and resources ad infinitum.
rjs 12/5/2012 | 4:09:46 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? Get the govt to put 100B in a fund (over 10 years)
which will act as a govt VC fund for high risk ventures.

To encourage private equity, the govt VC fund will invest as a co-investor with 2:1 matching funds. These investments are to be only early round investments (round A and maybe B).

We can also have another fund created which will only do low interest loans for companies ready to go public.

These are different from the SBIR "grants" that are given, in the sense that govt gets to be a sleeping equity partner.

The VCs may not like this though!!


PS: Note that 100B is less than what AIG got in
bailout and it will most certainly create jobs for the US and increase innovation.

rjmcmahon 12/5/2012 | 4:09:45 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? The problem is the proverbial other shoe has yet to fall. The Feds are busy printing money to keep confidence in the financial system to the best they can. But the locals, who would be the group to do any real work, are about to get hit.

Per Buffett:

"Local governments are going to face far tougher fiscal problems in the future than they have to date. The pension liabilities I talked about in last yearGÇÖs report will be a huge contributor to these woes. Many cities and states were surely horrified when they inspected the status of their funding at year end 2008. The gap between assets and a realistic actuarial valuation of present liabilities is simply staggering."
rjmcmahon 12/5/2012 | 4:09:45 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? The primary problem isn't innovation. (That's just more of the same empty rhetoric used to justify pie in the sky idealism and bloated salaries.) The problems are skills, execution, and costs. The baby boomers health care bills are going to be astronomical and they don't have the skills to provide these services to themselves. Corporate America isn't going to pay the bills rather will ditch this generation as soon as they get too costly (part of privatize profits - externalize costs.) The 401Ks are vastly underfunded and won't even cover retirement needs for most. Only the uber wealthy and the young and healthy are going to get their needs met. It's a real mess.

Sorry, but this one really is on the boomers - both the private and public sectors. Decades of poor planning catching up with delusional group thinking. I don't see how throwing MSDOS at the problem is going to help. It's going to be painful.
pvv 12/5/2012 | 4:09:45 PM
re: Is US Innovation Flaming Out? How about simply having the govt hand out $2k next year, come April, iff, one spends $10k this year ? For proof one files a "spending" return along with the tax return ......
Defer the liability and encourage spending ....Stop handing out to the usual suspects and hope that it encourages spending......
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