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There is a more nuanced view to be had of the current situation. For instance, Richard Florida has a new book out called The Great Reset.


Florida offers compelling evidence that the 1930s were the most innovative decade of the 20th century. Many new business practices were invented at this time. And this is when Hewlett Packard got going, and with it, what later came to be called "Silicon Valley".

The 1930s were also, at the same time, the worst economic disaster in the history of the USA. So an era can be both disastrous and very innovative. Those are not opposites. To say (as Steve Blank does) that we are at the beginning of an entrepreneurial revolution is inspiring. But he should be able to see that we can have both an entrepreneurial revolution and an economic disaster. Both are possible at the time.

This can be shown with a very simple graph. I will post that later.

I promised to post a graph, so here it is:


I offer this as a simple model to show how a country can be both extremely innovative, yet also face dramatic long-term economic decline.

You should round your numbers to a fixed number of decimal places (1 or 2), and then align columns of them to the right. It would be a lot easier to read and compare them.

About rounding the numbers, sure, I could do that, but I didn't want to put the time into it. This is what I could do in 15 minutes using Google Docs.

The graphs show the real picture. You don't need to look at the numbers.

Okay, I rounded the numbers.

The different between now and 1930 is that we were a creditor nation (like China), now we are a debtor nation. So in order to pay off our debt + interest, we have to hike up our taxes (or print dollars) to keep up, thereby suppressing innovation.

So in order to pay off our debt + interest, we have to hike up our taxes (or print dollars) to keep up, thereby suppressing innovation.

Well.. no.

You wouldn't know it from the current political dialog, but deficit budgets aren't uncommon.

The most common way to get rid of them isn't to raise taxes or print money - instead it's to grow the economy(!) The increased tax base leads to increased tax receipts which pays the deficit.

(This isn't an argument for cutting tax, though - especially the way most tax cuts are structured at the moment. They are - IMHO - stupid policy on both economic and social grounds)

The period when the USA experienced the greatest growth relative to other nations was the period from 1893 to 1929. When that era started the USA had a trade deficit and there was major public outcry about the amount of debt that the USA owed to Britain. But the deficit and the debt didn't hold back the USA.

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