Steve Jobs vs. Ted Kennedy
But reflect for a moment on Steve Jobs. He took resources from no one. He coerced no one. He pandered to no one. He made hundreds of millions of people happy. He ended up being responsible for the creation of tens if not hundreds of thousands of jobs, and inspired countless others to mimic him, or to beat him, or to otherwise complement his work. He asked for no special favors. He was adopted, and certainly was not dealt the best hand in the lottery of life. He blamed no one else for his failures. He shared in his successes. I would argue that this one man’s short life was far more important than a century’s worth of politicians who claim to be working in your interest.
Sure, tears are shed at the passing of “great” political leaders, and indeed some leaders have done a fine job of representing their constituents. But even the best political leaders are best at laying the foundations and groundwork so that remarkable people like Steve Jobs can flourish. That does not mean the work of good political leaders is unimportant – of course not — a cursory look across the planet to some dysfunctional countries confirms that. But it does mean that the general scorn applied to the entrepreneurs who have done so much to help us become healthy, wealthy and wise is disproportionately large given the scorn applied to a political class whose exclusive tool is to employ coercion (which again, is perhaps necessary, if unfortunate).
HT: Pete Friedlander