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[ | 4 Apr 2011 | Comments Off on Medical Innovation: How Not To | ]
Medical Innovation: How Not To

[O]nly the whinging culture of the liberal state could take one of the greatest opportunities ever presented to humanity – the astonishing progress in medicine and biology – and convert it into a cause for complaint and despair while at the same time taking one of the best-known issues in institution building — the over-use of a commons — and see it as an intractable problem beyond society’s capacity to address.

Digital Economy, Video & Gaming »

[ | 28 Mar 2011 | Comments Off on Gamestop Rolls On In Down Economy | ]
Gamestop Rolls On In Down Economy

GameStop, the video game retailer, has recently released their fiscal year 2010 report and business is a boomin’! The company announced a record sales year in the neighborhood of $9.47 billion.

CurrentHeader, Digital Economy, Internet »

[ | 25 Mar 2011 | One Comment | ]
Facing the Truth, We All Love Walled Gardens

There was a recent article by Sam Biddle called “Facebook is AOLifying the Internet – and That Sucks”. It’s a pretty accurate take on what Facebook has become over the last few years as it considers many of the new features that Facebook has both developed and ripped off. The article itself was probably a slight ripoff of one that John C. Dvorak had produced some months earlier, “Facebook is the New AOL,” that was essentially in the same vein.

Digital Economy »

[ | 8 Mar 2011 | Comments Off on Innovation | ]

ITIF is putting on a forum tomorrow on The Obama Administration’s Innovation Policy. The cast is, as Hollywood would say, star-studded,  with Austan Goolsbee (CEO Chair), Phil Weiser (NEC Senior Advisor), & Aneesh Chopra (US CTO), to list only Federal government people, plus reps of state governments and several high tech companies.
The background document is the Administration’s Strategy for American Innovation, a Feb. 04, 2011, update of the Fall 2010 release, and the focus will be on: “key elements of the Administration’s strategy: 1) Investing in the Building …

Digital Economy »

[ | 28 Feb 2011 | Comments Off on Investment | ]

At Investor’s Business Daily, Robert Higgs takes a gloomy look at the current state of net investment in the U.S., and concludes:
Unless private investment recovers more rapidly, the economy’s recovery is sure to remain slow, too slow to significantly lower unemployment.
Firms are reluctant to undertake risky long-term investments because they continue to view the future with major misgivings, owing to the unsettled condition of future government actions with regard to health care, financial regulations, energy regulations, taxation and other matters that have serious business …

Digital Economy, Wireless »

[ | 16 Feb 2011 | 6 Comments | ]
Since cell phones move, tax them

It appears that average wireless service nationwide have reached new highs rising above 16% as politicians look for something to maintain state and local coffers in a down economy.  This is more than twice as high as the average rate of other consumption taxes and states like Nebraska, Washington, and New York top the list at around 23%.  A proposed moratorium on new wireless taxes H.R 1521 was proposed in the last congress but have unfortunately failed to pass.
The tax revenues do pay for the services that all of us use, …

CurrentHeader, Digital Economy »

[ | 15 Feb 2011 | 2 Comments | ]
Mobile Payments & the Durbin Amendment

A hot topic in the smartphone field is mobile payments, especially Near Field Technology (NFC), as an alternative to debit cards.
However, I don’t recall seeing, in any of the discussions of mobile payments, much about the possible impact of the Durbin Amendment, the provision added to Dodd-Frank that imposes fee caps and multi-network requirements on the world of debit cards.
The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) is charged with issuing rules to implement Durbin, and its proposal is now out for comment. So it was interesting to see, right there at Vol. …

Digital Economy »

[ | 14 Feb 2011 | 2 Comments | ]
More Hill Hearings: Payment Systems

On Thurs, Feb. 17, House Financial Services will have a hearing on“Understanding the Federal Reserve’s Proposed Rule on Interchange Fees: Implications and Consequences of the Durbin Amendment.” 10:00 a.m. in 2128 Rayburn HOB.
From the perspective of DS, the relevance is twofold: (1) The connections between this regulation and regulations of other networks, such as Net Neutrality (see Net Neutrality, the Internet & Electronic Funds Transfer Networks); (2) The effect of this or other regulations of payment systems on the development of new smartphone-based payment systems.
I will watch with interest …

Digital Economy, Research »

[ | 11 Feb 2011 | 2 Comments | ]
Research: Genachowski, Wu, & Tech Markets

Schulz comments on the implementation of Net Neutrality rules and the appointment of Tim Wu to the FTC as further evidence that Washington does not understand technology. He believes these two gentlemen see the “health and vigor” of the tech sector and destructive.

Digital Economy »

[ | 10 Feb 2011 | One Comment | ]
Law, Innovation & Growth

For over 20 years, I have observed with alarm the steady expansion of legal and regulatory quantity and complexity, combined with serious excesses in the use of criminal sanctions. I have so often voiced an anguished “this can’t go on” that I have become an object of mockery to my children, who have known no other world except that of the imperial legal system.
Perhaps, though, the day is coming at long last when the society will begin to rebel against the steady rise of the legal empire and its stifling …