If America hopes to keep its economy strong, our next leaders need to prioritize support for innovation, writes Thomas L. Friedman in the New York Times. “The ability to create the new products and services that people want” is key to “growth, prosperity, environmental sustainability and national security,” a tech researcher tells Friedman. But the American drive to invent is “not being supported and nurtured as needed in today’s super competitive world,” Friedman notes.
Today, “we are falling behind in K-12 education, infrastructure and in tax, regulatory and immigration policies that no longer welcome the world’s most talented minds,” the researcher notes. Instead of fixing those issues, we’re sending $1 billion to Georgia, “whose president behaved irresponsibly, just to poke Vladimir Putin in the eye," Friedman writes. If we want to continue to have that kind of money at our disposal, investment in innovation is essential, he notes.