Thursday, May 17, 2012

Banned from TED

You can't handle the truth!

That's what TED had to say to its worldwide audience after it deemed one of its speeches too politically controversial to post online. Evidently, it found one idea not worth spreading.

TED, the website that offers "riveting talks by remarkable people, free to the world," wouldn't broadcast a speech by a venture capitalist from Seattle.


Well, according to National Journal in a piece titled "The Inequality Speech That TED Won't Show You," Nick Hanauer, an early investor in (meaning he's very rich man today) believes that "he, and other wealthy innovators like him, doesn't create jobs. The middle class does -- and its decline threatens everyone in America, from the innovators on down."

TED appeals to conservatives because it offers speakers who demonstrate that it was their own hard work, acumen and perseverance that got them where they are today.

Implicit in this paradigm is the belief that low taxes on the rich spur economic growth.

Hanauer says this isn't true.

Consider this provocative closing from his speech:

"We've had it backward for the last 30 years. Rich businesspeople like me don't create jobs. Rather they are a consequence of an eco-systemic  feedback loop animated by middle-class consumers, and when they thrive, businesses grow and hire, and owners profit. That's why taxing the rich to pay for investments that benefit all is a great deal for both the middle class and the rich.

So here's an idea worth spreading.  

In a capitalist economy, the true job creators are consumers, the middle class.  And taxing the rich to make investments that grow the middle class, is the single smartest thing we can do for the middle class, the poor and the rich."

Obviously, these beliefs go against the grain of current orthodoxy at TED and within the corridors of corporate America and the GOP.

Making a case for higher taxes on those most capable of paying them is never popular, particularly during a presidential election year.

But, it's an idea worth spreading, whether TED believes so or not. 

No comments:

Post a Comment