About two years ago, Ted banned Nick Hanauer’s talk called ‘Rich People Don’t Create Jobs.’ Billionaire Nick Hanauer (a venture capitalist from Seattle) gave the talk at a TED conference focusing mainly on income and inequality in America. Although the talk received a standing ovation from the audience, TED didn’t feel it was “An idea worth spreading” and refused to post it to their website. Regardless of the fact that TED has featured many presentations given by high-up politicians like Bill Clinton, David Cameron and Al Gore, this talk was somehow deemed too politically controversial and “explicitly partisan.”
According to Christopher Andersen, the curator of TED, “The talk tapped into a really important and timely issue, but it framed the issue in a way that was explicitly partisan. And it included a number of arguments that were unconvincing, even to those of us who supported his overall stance.”
After word got out about TED’s decision to ban the talk, a mass of people signed a petition and demanded the rights to view it. TED reluctantly had to publish Nick’s talk which I have posted below.
“It is astounding how significantly one idea can shape a society and its policies. Consider this one. If taxes on the rich go up, job creation will go down. This idea is an article of faith for Republicans and seldom challenged by Democrats and has shaped much of today’s economic landscape. But sometimes the ideas that we know to be true are dead wrong. For thousands of years people were sure that earth was at the center of the universe. It’s not, and an astronomer who still believed that it was, would do some lousy astronomy. In the same way, a policy maker who believed that the rich and businesses are “job creators” and therefore should not be taxed, would make equally bad policy.” Nick Hanauer
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