WANTED: The Same Old Innovations

A new report on innovation is making its way through Congress, reports Thomas Hemphill:

In November 2014, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) presented the incoming members of the 114th Congress with “Federal Policies and Innovation”, a report arguing that “market failure” – whereby “[I]nnovation produces some benefits for society from which individual innovators are not able to profit – results in those innovators tending to “underinvest” in such activity. Public policymakers, says the CBO, must “endeavor to promote innovation to compensate for that underinvestment.” There are three innovation-related issues which Congress will likely address in this Congress: the re-instatement of the federal R&D tax credit, patent reform, and regulatory reform.

The problem with innovation is that it tends to disrupt established players and to undermine Administration efforts to enrich its favorite crony capitalists.