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Mon Jul 16, 2012, 07:02 AM

Multi-Millionaire Admits: The Government Helped Make Me Rich

http://www.alternet.org/books/156250/multi-millionaire_admits%3A_the_government_helped_make_me_rich/

Unless you happen to be a computer programmer, you probably don’t spend much time thinking about how a global positioning system (GPS) or a digital camera works or where the Mars rovers get their intelligence. All those devices have something in common: they’re driven by software developed by a company you’ve probably never heard of -- Wind River Systems. Based in Alameda, California, Wind River is a company born in part from government investment in research.

At the helm of Wind River for 26 years -- first as founder and CEO and then as chairman -- Jerry Fiddler knows that his success depended on many things, including public support of education, other people’s investment, US government support of the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, and a whole lot of happenstance. In fact, were it not for a few quirks of fate, he might be a jazz musician, a photographer, or a geologist today.

Wind River Systems was sold to Intel in 2009 for $884 million. Fiddler’s share was more than $40 million. Now Fiddler “helps people start companies” as an investor in and consultant to startups in Silicon Valley, as an adjunct professor of entrepreneurship at the University of California at Berkeley, and as guest lecturer and mentor at Stanford University.

Education played an important role in Fiddler’s success. After attending public school in Chicago, he went on to attend the University of Illinois, a land-grant college, where he majored in music and photography.

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Reply Multi-Millionaire Admits: The Government Helped Make Me Rich (Original post)
xchrom Jul 2012 OP
rfranklin Jul 2012 #1
Larry Ogg Jul 2012 #2

Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 07:31 AM

1. He also mentions that regulations are essential to protecting startup businesses...

 

to create a "level playing field." No mention of regulation deterring entrepreneurs.

How about that?

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 10:04 AM

2. Thank you Jerry Fiddler for shining the light on Ronald Reagans “Government is the Problem” big lie.

Fiddler and his business partner started in 1978, and…

And thank you xchrom for posting this article.

<snip>
There’s no way I would be here if I hadn’t worked at a national lab. It was the best place in the world to learn how to do this. I probably wouldn’t have gotten that job if I hadn’t had a master’s degree, which I got from a public university. I wouldn’t have had that master’s or a bachelor’s degree if there weren’t financial aid and an assistantship in grad school. And had I not gone to a good public school, I probably wouldn’t have gotten into the university. So you just keep stepping back. Heck, if my mother hadn’t had the right prenatal care, I could have been 28 IQ points less intelligent! So where does it start?

One of the things people don’t talk about is how much we really rely on government institutions to maintain a fair playing field. Entrepreneurship is an equalizer, a way that people who aren’t wealthy can become more wealthy, can become more independent, and in the process can provide a huge amount of benefit to society as a whole. But we live in a society right now that is going in exactly the opposite direction. The disparity in wealth between the bottom and the top is growing dramatically, and the middle class is being squeezed out.

<snip>

Unfortunately there exist at the top of the financial pyramid, a pack of wolves, or coven of evil if you will, that despises a fair playing field, and the true sense of a free market. And given their ownership of mass media, and the financial ability to affect (read: infect) both Political Parties, and the outcome of National Elections, they are turning monopolies into oligarchies, and Democracy into a corporately owned phony illusion trademark that pacifies the slaves.


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