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Tag Archives: Politics

At Least They Are Passionate About Budgets

Don’t you kind of wish American politicians would get this passionate about the budget and massive deficits? Give it to members of South Korea’s Grand National Party and opposing Democratic Party for caring deeply (ok, a little too deeply) about their budget. That’s the thing about entrepreneurs: we have to live within a budget.

Seoul, South Korea

Photo Associated Press. In Seoul, South Korea, clashing over a budget bill in front of the National Assembly

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“My Father is Li Gang!”

This has become a rallying cry in China against censorship; it’s also a bitter joke about avoiding responsibility. It comes in the aftermath of a tragedy as reported in NYT. A drunk driver was speeding along and struck some bicyclists head on, killing a woman named Chen Xiaofeng. The driver attempted to get away, saying “my father is Li Gang!” The accused son’s father, Li Gang, is deputy police chief. Chinese censors quickly suppressed news of her death, but it’s the age of the Internet and news leaked out. So now most Chinese know, but the government continues to censor commentary. It is an ugly reminder of economic opportunity without political freedom…

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Off With His Head

There’s a great anecdote in Matt Ridley’s wonderful book, The Rational Optimist. Matt tells the story, passed down through the centuries by written accounts at the time, of when the Roman emperor Tiberius was approached by an entrepreneur who had discovered a method for manufacturing unbreakable glass. Tiberius asked the enterprising fellow if anyone else knew of his secret, and was assured the secret was safe and no one else knew. Tiberius then had the man beheaded. Why? To protect the price of gold, which Tiberius figured would go through the floor if people put too much value on a material (glass) that he, Tiberius, did not control.

The story is shocking for obvious reasons but also telling – an inventor even in the midst of a prosperous empire had nowhere else to go other than the emperor for funding. Here’s to angels, VCs, personal credit cards, friends & family – whatever fuel you can put in your tank to get going with your venture!

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“The next big thing will not be invented here”

Intel CEO Paul Otellini warns “the next big thing will not be invented here. Jobs will not be created here.” His comments were made at the Technology Policy Institute’s Aspen Forum, and he says this is based on the US legal environment being hostile to business.

CNET’s story also cites Bill Gates’ speech in 2005 decrying curbs on immigration and guest workers that would provide a boost to research institutions in China and India.

What do you think?

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