Originally Posted by AppleInsider
"Tomorrow, President Obama will meet with executives from leading tech companies to discuss progress made in addressing performance and capacity issues with HealthCare.Gov and how government can better deliver IT to maximize innovation, efficiency and customer service," said an unnamed White House official.
Good plan, they should have done this a while ago. Collectively, these companies probably account for the majority of the world's website traffic. Google has managed over 1 billion unique hits in a month. Instead, they outsourced it to a Canadian company CGI Federal:
They appear to have about double the number of employees as Google but the project was clearly too much for them. I don't see why it really has to be managed by a single company. They could have contracted separate companies in each state with separate servers. The main site would just act as a site to direct people to their state site and the databases would all be separate. If needs be, they'd sync the databases centrally every so often.
Originally Posted by AppleInsider
"The meeting will also address national security and the economic impacts of unauthorized intelligence disclosures. Finally, the President will discuss ways his Administration can partner with the tech sector to further grow the economy, create jobs and address issues around income inequality and social mobility."
Yeah, let's hear what all these millionaires and billionaires think about income inequality and social mobility.
There aren't easy answers to these issues, especially from people who have been successful because many think that it comes naturally from their hard work. For every success that happens, there are hundreds/thousands of people trying just as hard and don't make it. There was a story about a graffiti artist who painted the walls at Facebook and was paid in stock:
How many artists across the world do the same thing and those companies don't take off? The difference in reward for the same job is based on nothing but chance.
Look at how many Android device manufacturers there are and Samsung takes all the money. I think it's in part because people tend towards simple options. We don't have time for all the in-betweens, we want black/white, good/bad, hero/villain. Look at comic books, you don't get anyone called mediocre-man helping someone who has fallen on hard times by paying their utility bill, it has to be superman saving someone from something life-threatening. We only want as many big names as we can remember for each industry, preferably two per sector maximum:
mobile hardware - Apple/Samsung
mobile software - Apple/Google
desktop software - Apple/Microsoft
desktop hardware - Apple/HP/Dell/Lenovo, a bit too many but we'll see what happens
burgers - McDonalds/Burger King
pizza - Domino's/Pizza Hut
online retail - Amazon/eBay/Etsy
social - Facebook/Twitter
You get the idea, very few brands that people want to succeed. That stunts economic growth because small companies have so much to fight against and have no means to do it. These big companies don't pay the full tax rates. While they pay more money, it's the rates that matter because it's about margins. Small companies paying higher rates can't have competitive margins so that they can invest it in growth, unlike the big companies. The capital to grow small companies has to come from investment from wealthy people who then become even wealthier if the companies take off. Rich becoming richer = income inequality again.
To encourage economic growth and fix income inequality, this needs to be almost flipped upside down. The big companies need to be punished harshly for not paying the full tax rates. Small companies need every incentive and tax break they can get so that they can grow and employ people locally. The problem is that so many companies become successful because they are centralized all-in-one companies and want to manage everything and that ties in with our desire for simplicity.
One of the biggest issues I think there is for individuals concerning social mobility is matching people with fulfilling jobs. Everybody has their own rough idea of what they enjoy and employers know what jobs need to be done but they very rarely match up because a lot of jobs just aren't rewarding (I don't mean financially). This has to tie in with education. So many educational institutions are out of touch with employers that students just don't get the training for real jobs. In part this is due to how quickly industry changes but education still doesn't adapt to it.
Now, let's say that someone gets the training, gets the opportunity to use it, that has to be a recipe for success. But no, if you take the example of the App Store with almost no barriers to entry, this is still a system that's setup to promote the few at the expense of the many:
Social mobility can't happen when this is the setup. So what's the solution then? People will say communism/socialism doesn't work, people have to live and die by their efforts, there needs to be incentive and reward for success and lack of it for failure. That's great when you're one of the few who benefit from it but increasingly, the inequality is growing and larger and larger numbers of people are feeling that work/life is designed to be weighted against them in order to benefit the winners no matter how hard they try.
Financial institutions share a lot of the blame. They have done untold damage to the economy and the media coverage of it has blown over. Everybody is tied into a system of debt-creation that's going to keep growing and when the people in control decide there's not enough profit, just up everyone's interest rates for mortgages, credit cards, loans etc. Debt is a non-issue to wealthy people, it's a device to keep the poor working harder than they should and why they need more healthcare than they should and it's ideal for the wealthy that this happens as it creates a class of desperate workers that do unrewarding jobs for them.
The issues don't fit into bullet-points, people are too complex. The solutions certainly don't. There needs to be a radical overhaul of how business functions, how our monetary system functions and is controlled and the mentality that it's only the right of the few to live a rewarding life.