Subject: Re: Tom W. Bell paper
From: simo <>
Date: Sat, 02 Sep 2006 08:30:42 -0400

On Fri, 2006-09-01 at 23:49 -0700, Thomas Lord wrote:
> David,
> That put a smile on my face because of the well put
> truth it points to, David, but I think you go to far.
> In, let's say, "western" history of the past two
> millennia, I think you'll find that most research
> was *privately* funded and that, indeed, even
> our very crude attempts to apply market forces
> to research have yielded impressive results (even
> if, from a contemporary perspective, the situation
> is very frustrating).

Can you make a few examples of costly base research that has been
"privately" funded in the past 2000 years?
Btw explain also what you mean for private before 18th century in the
various epochs.

> Against the "test of time," research by patronage
> funding seems to be what has created and sustained
> us through the Enlightenment more than other factors.

So you equate patronage with private funding? Funny.

> Now, in support of what you say, even if I am right
> and you are wrong -- we are both right that markets
> have yet to prove themselves capable of carrying the
> torch.  But (a) don't give up on the possibility of
> creatively deploying markets -- patronage has plenty
> of problems wanting remedy and markets reliably
> do what they do when we figure out how to form them;
> (b) don't leap to the conclusion that government sponsorship
> is the right answer -- haven't you ever been to the DMV? :-)

I never seen markets put trillion of dollars on the table for a serious
scientific research that is _not_ going to bring out a finite product in
less then 5 years.

But I am not an expert, some examples may be enlightening.