This is a good point to share with your friends who tell you, while nodding, that the government should just get out of the way and let private enterprise solve today’s problems.
Burton Richter, Nobel laureate in physics
The President talked about Sputnik, which inspired the Eisenhower administration to sharply increase investment in education, and in all areas of science and technology. The President mentioned the role of government in innovation, but Congress does not seem to have appreciated what the federal role has been. Simply put, industry does not innovate; industry turns federally funded innovations into products. Nobel laureates said it in 2009. The National Academies of Sciences said it in 2010. The American Enterprise Institute, Brookings and the Breakthrough Institute said it recently in a report called “Post-Partisan Power.”
America’s corporate leaders also said it recently in a report from The American Energy Innovation Council. Every basic technology in one of the products of the decade, the iPhone (and the Blackberry before it), came from government funded research; the internet, the GPS system, large scale integrated circuits, and even the touch screen, (see “Where Good Technologies Come From“)
Without industry there would be no product. Without government funded R&D there would be no innovative technology to turn into products. To both Congress and the Administration I would say back the pieties with the funds required to realize them.
And this goes double triple Hammer time for new clean energy solutions.
Via . Earth