Tag: Entrepreneurship

The “Miracle” of Kirznerian Entrepreneurship »

I learned a lot about miracles recently thanks to a penetrating sermon by pastor Mark McNees of Element3 Church, a “progressive” non-denominational church in Tallahassee. And it prompted a lot of thinking about markets and entrepreneurship, particularly entrepreneurship as conceived by Austrian economists, most notably Israel Kirzner. (Kirzner is required reading in my social…
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A Case for Patent Reform »

For many decades most economists believed patents were key to the innovation and material progress enjoyed by the West. In recent years, however, many have looked at patents with growing skepticism, with some even suggesting that the patent system be scrapped. In contrast, economist Arthur M. Diamond Jr. (Univ. of Nebraska at Omaha) believes…
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What Makes a Miserable Country? »

Venezuela is the world’s most miserable country, according to a team of researchers at Johns Hopkins University who have calculated a World Misery Index. “Misery” is measured as the sum of a country’s inflation rate, unemployment rate, and interest rate, minus the annual percentage change in real GDP per capita. The higher the total…
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LAPD Targets Citizens’ Free Speech Rights »

As tech CEOs gather with President Obama and other government officials at today’s White House Cyber Summit at Stanford University, it is important for entrepreneurs to keep in mind who they are breaking bread with. A case in point: Charlie Beck, chief of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), wrote a letter recently to…
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Apocalypse Not: The Legacy of Julian Simon »

“The ultimate resource is people—especially skilled, spirited, and hopeful young people endowed with liberty—who will exert their wills and imaginations for their own benefit and inevitably benefit the rest of us as well.” —Julian Simon February 12 marks the birthday of the late economist Julian Simon (1932–1998). On this special occasion, I wish to…
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Death Valley? Peter Thiel and Steve Jobs on What Could Kill Silicon Valley »

On January 27, legendary entrepreneur Peter Thiel told a packed house at an Independent Institute luncheon, at the Olympic Club in San Francisco, that to blaze new trails ask: “What important truth do very few people agree with me on?” One of mine is that California will not be the epicenter of the tech…
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Peter Thiel’s Contrarian Manifesto »

[Editor’s Note: The Independent Institute is hosting a sold-out event, “Developing the Developed World: Entrepreneurship, Liberty, and the Future,” with Peter Thiel on Tuesday, January 27, 2015.] “Every moment in business happens only once. The next Bill Gates will not build an operating system. The next Larry Page or Sergey Brin won’t make a…
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Economics 101: Uber’s Prices Don’t “Exploit” People »

The past few weeks have been full of travel—between Denver, Atlanta, Louisville, and Washington, D.C., I’ve had more than my fair share of layovers and flight delays. (I was also forced to contemplate what terrible thing I might have done to deserve sitting next to the woman who let out a scream every time…
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Amazon’s “Dark Side” Is a Bright Spot for Workers and Consumers »

Jim Hightower is an old-fashioned Texas progressive, who, if memory serves, once ran unsuccessfully for the governorship of that state. He may be a great polemicist – see “The Dark Side of Amazon” – but he does not know the first thing about how markets work and how Amazon.com, like Wal-Mart, is a benefactor…
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New Study Links Patent Trolls to Decline in R&D Spending and Other Ills »

A new paper (“Patent Trolls: Evidence from Targeted Firms”) written by researchers from Harvard University and the University of Texas offers more evidence of the harm that patent trolls cause to the American economy. The data show that (1) trolls target companies flush with cash, (2) seek targets likely to settle rather than litigate, and (3)…
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