Bill Gates Wants Your Tax Dollars
On his blog yesterday, Bill Gates made his pitch to get more our of our tax dollars.
Gates notes that the Presidential campaign hasn't touched much on innovations (which I guess is true if you don't count innovative ways to repackage reality). Invoking the 1961 moon-shot declaration of John F. Kennedy, Gates wants to make a case for four areas in which the government can spur innovation. With money.
He tries to frame this as a centrist idea by creating an imaginary extreme on one end of the debate:
I’ve heard some people argue that life-changing innovations come exclusively from the private sector. But innovation starts with government support for the research labs and universities working on new insights that entrepreneurs can turn into companies that change the world. The public sector’s investments unlock the private sector’s ingenuity.
If he means, as his essay suggests, that some people argue that the private sector does these things while refusing any dirty government money, well, I haven't heard anybody argue that. Have you heard, for instance, of any charter schools that have insisted on finding their own funding and have refused any solitary cent of government support? No, me neither.
Gates is arguing for the same old, same old-- private corporations getting their hands on that sweet, sweet pile of tax dollars to fund their enterprise. Gates is arguing that we need to elect leaders who see that the government can make progress on the issues that face us by unlocking innovation with a big fat key made out of money. He cites the space race as one of the great public-private partnerships, but what he doesn't discuss is the manner of the partnership and the rules by which it CURMUDGUCATION: Bill Gates Wants Your Tax Dollars: