This article caught my eye. The view of the future it presents does sound like science fiction, but, of course, most of our current technology was science fiction 50 years ago. This is interesting in it’s own right, but it also got me thinking about the conservative and progressive reaction to progress. Conservatives welcome it, and believe in richly rewarding successful innovators (with the marketplace determining who is successful). Progressives aren’t exactly against progress, but they are suspicious of it. Consider their dislike/distrust of the drug companies despite the amazing drug breakthroughs those companies have produced. And, rather than letting the market dictate what innovations the innovators work on, they want to control the research. For example, they are quite happy to throw tons of the people’s money at “green” innovation, hoping for progress in electric cars, wind energy and the like.
I submit that the conservatives have it right. The marketplace provides much better incentives to the innovators and much greater rewards to those who succeed. And, the marketplace is a much better judge of which innovations have true value than any government bureaucrat is.