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Policy: Technology

Government just doesn't get the information age

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Beltway Confidential,Michael Barone,Jon Stewart,Kathleen Sebelius,Technology

Tech writer Michael Malone has an excellent piece for Forbes entitled "Why Progressive Always Get Tech Wrong." The gist is that American liberals favor top-down command-and-control policies, while information technology connects people in markets and enables them to make their own choices. Key sentence: "because of Moore's Law (constantly accelerating the rate of change), globalization (rapidly expanding the customer base), and the Internet (giving users the information they need to make their own informed decisions), the traditional model of top-down, command-and-control decision making that characterized corporations through the 1950s is both obsolete and dangerously self-destructive."

Moore's Law famously says that the number of transistors on integrated circuits — computing capability — doubles every two years. Government procurement procedures take a lot longer than that.

I have long thought that there's a fundamental tension between the create-your-own-world of the millennial generation and the top-down command-and-control policies of the Obama administration. Maybe the millennials are coming to see that. Jon Stewart certainly gave them some help in his devastating interview with HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius last night.

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