A Sentence to Ponder
By Arnold Kling
from Felix Salmon:
I see [Tyler] Cowen as being a kind of anti-Larry Summers in the internal government debate about what to do about Haiti. Rather than being the person who throws cold water on promising ideas, he’s the person who holds them up with enthusiasm, finding people who can navigate and solve any flaws in the initial concept.
In FP2P, we have a discussion of the entrepreneurial personality vs. the bureacratic personality. The entrepreneur wants to test ideas empirically. The bureaucrat wants to say “no” a priori. Large organizations need bureaucrats, because otherwise they would waste too much organizational capital (human as well as financial) trying out bad ideas. Entrepreneurs start with less organizational capital to lose, so they are the ones that you want to try out risky ideas.
Only in desperate situations will organizations turn to entrepreneurs (I am thinking of wars, when the military will dismiss some of its bureaucratic leaders and elevate some entrepreneurial ones.) Haiti looks like a desperate situation.