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Discussion: (4 comments)

  1. SeattleSam

    But the “pie” has stopped growing as fast precisely because government is consuming more of GDP. Unless you think a dollar of government spending is more economically productive than that same dollar left in the private sector, that’s simply a mathematical certainty.

    1. Todd Mason

      You grow pumpkins. The township neglects the bridge linking you to the world to the point that it falls into the creek. Is your dollar best spend on more pumpkin seed or on public works?

      1. CornFuzed

        The reason the bridge was neglected to start with was because of the township management. Government cannot build and maintain infrastructure any more than medical services or mail delivery. If the bridge was privately built and maintained, it would have had value to begin with and would have been maintained. Government should not be in the bridge building – or any other business.

  2. Steven Hales

    The rate of increase of all-cause-mortality has declined in the past decade (see CDC). The 5 year survival rate for many cancers has improved dramatically from 1973 to the present according to SEER.

    All inventions are derivative of some prior art and prior inventions are the assembly blocks of the new (see Brian Arthur). And there is no invention that works until it is in use and it is there that it is perfected (see the history of the steam engine and the internal combustion engine with improvements of both continuing to capture an increasing portion of Carnot maximum efficiency).

    The continued decline in the share of budgets for food, transport, entertainment, communication, computing, housing and energy is a sign of continuing innovation and probably the most important measures of usefulness and of productivity.

    Yeah, yeah ‘costs more, does less’ is never a good marketing slogan.

    I think Thiel and company are wrong. Rogoff is right to be skeptical of the thesis of an innovation slow down, too many facts to the contrary.

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