Entrepreneurship as a Cure for Violence

The Success Indicator

I-CAMP is a program to teach young people entrepreneurial skills such as computer programming. I-CAMP stands for Intrinsic, Community, Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose, which are fundamental elements for building wealth and health. According to Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow:

If you take into account prisoners, a large majority of African American men in some urban areas, like Chicago, have been labeled felons for life. These men are part of a growing undercaste — not class, caste – a group of people who are permanently relegated, by law, to an inferior second-class status. They can be denied the right to vote, automatically excluded from juries, and legally discriminated against in employment, housing, access to education, and public benefits — much as their grandparents and great-grandparents once were during the Jim Crow era.

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Getting More Scientists, Engineers and Entrepreneurs into Government

Thomas Jefferson said, “If the present Congress errs in too much talking, how can it be otherwise in a body to which the people send one hundred and fifty lawyers, whose trade it is to question everything, yield nothing, and talk by the hour? ”

In the 111th Congress:

TOTAL NUMBER OF LAWYER-LEGISLATORS IN THE SENATE: 54 out of 100 or 54%

TOTAL NUMBER OF LAWYER-LEGISLATORS IN THE HOUSE: 162 out of 441 or 36%

Many of our elected officials’ important duties involve running the economy, allocating resources and budgets, and analyzing policies based on their inputs and expected outcomes, yet lawyers have less experience at this than businessmen and economists (the next most common professions in politics). When it comes to deciding on whether to join a currency union, how to direct a trade negotiation, whether to cut taxes or how to design a social program, lawyers appear dangerously under-qualified compared businessmen and economists.

When we are confronted with the greatest crises in the world today – global warming, disease, energy scarcity – lawyers appear to be dangerously under-qualified compared to scientists, doctors and engineers. Lawyers tend to have little substantive expertise in any of these areas, and it is their skill at “politics” rather than “policy” that seems to have enabled their political success.

Decreasing the domination of politics by lawyers will mean that we have achieved some progress in reigning in the influence of money.

http://invisiblecollege.weblog.leidenuniv.nl/2008/01/25/why-are-so-many-politicians-lawyers/

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Let America Be America Again

America’s problem is not that it does not work like China. It is that it no longer works like America. ~ Richard McGregor

[T]his paper shows that without startups, there would be no net job growth in the U.S. economy. This fact is true on average, but also is true for all but seven years for which the United States has data going back to 1977…. Startups create an average of 3 million new jobs annually. All other ages of firms, including companies in their first full years of existence up to firms established two centuries ago, are net job destroyers, losing 1 million jobs net combined per year. ~ The Importance of Startups in Job Creation and Job Destruction by The Kauffman Foundation

http://www.kauffman.org/uploadedfiles/firm_formation_importance_of_startups.pdf

[A] critical aspect of improving the U.S. economy is actually improving the small business economy and making it easier to start a business and to grow small businesses.

http://techonomy.com/2012/09/techonomy-detroit-jack-dorsey-on-building-startups-and-becoming-mayor/

[A] magisterial study by Deloitte’s Center for the Edge… shows the rates of return on assets and on invested capital for 20,000 US firms from 1965 to 2011. It shows that “managerialism” has been steadily failing for the last half century.

Economy-wide Return on Invested Capital

The graphic shows that something has gone so terribly wrong with the US private sector—the supposed engine of economic growth and the supposed creators of jobs. When the best firms have rates of return on assets or on invested capital of, on average, just over one percent, we have a management catastrophe on our hands.

An ROA of just over one percent means that firms are dying faster and faster: the life expectancy of firms in the Fortune 500 is now less than fifteen years and declining rapidly. Continue reading