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Showing posts from May, 2013

Strawman arguments against government support for startups still leave tough questions to answer

Last July, I mentioned that "there is increasingly a mood in Canada that we've been wasting too many resources on small startups that will never become large firms." In the months since, there's been a lot more written on that theme, much of it aimed at government policymakers.

There can be more than a touch of theatrical performance in these pieces. Often, the intended-but-not-explicit message is "why government needs to provide more funding for things we do ... and less for things those guys are doing"  (or, "why government should have funded what we do and not that tripe they chose to fund instead").

But, motivations aside, the ideas will stand or fall on their own. The pieces I've read have largely been rebuttals of strawman arguments for why startups are supported in the first place and come from a highly hands-on view of government's role in building businesses.

It's not unreasonable to question whether we should skew our limite…