Friday, November 01, 2013

TED talk Mariana Mazzucato

Prof Mariana Mazzucato continues her campaign to convince the world that the (mostly US) Government has been the prime innovator, investor and risk-taker in modern technology, as proved by the success of smart phones, the internet and pharmaceuticals.  Whilst 'garage entrepreneurs' get the glory for most of the above, their amazing success was only possible because the state funded the many failures that were the hard road to the breakthroughs from which the garage people spun their huge profits. 

What, asks Mazzucato is being done to take equity in the garage ventures so that there is public reward from the public investment?  In the US and most countries (Brazil and Finland excepted) the state as venture capitalist pays out, gets the technology to a marketable condition and hands over the spout of profit to private venture capitalists. These arrange to pay little tax, but capture huge rewards. Ordinary tax payers covered the original state investment and are taxed to cover general welfare, education, health, etc., whilst the new money-spinning machines largely escape. 

The media and some political parties slam the state as a Leviathan, troublesome and a blockage to enterprise which in Mazzucato's view is the reverse of the truth. For clear thinking watch her TED Talk here . See also this blog

The principle of what Mazzucato is calling for, is also a central theme of the book  The Free Lunch- Fairness with Freedom,  in which the case is made for the channelling of rewards back to the originators of those rewards. 
posted by Charles Bazlinton.    

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