During the second presidential debate, Governor Romney interrupted
the President to say, “Government does not create jobs.”
One response from Obama could have been, “But it does, governor,
millions of them, including the one you recently held in
Almost everyone knows, or is related to, at least one of the more
than 20 million Americans employed in public education, state and
local government, federal agencies, etc. The multiplier effect as
those employees buy things creates additional private sector jobs.
But perhaps more important than direct government employment is the
role that government-funded research has played in supporting the
growth of many of our major industries, including computers, aircraft,
the internet, nuclear power, nanotechnology, renewable energy,
pharmaceuticals, etc. It was the Defense Advanced Research Projects
Agency(DARPA), not Al Gore, that spawned the internet.
Much of that funded research occurs at universities, such as the
University of Minnesota, where $51.3 million in state bonding funds
are building a new physics and nanotechnology building. This will
support $30 million annually that the university receives in federal
research grants which have the potential to create new businesses and
Government is not the problem that one former president suggested. It
is an important partner to American industry as we compete in an
increasingly high technology world.