THE PITFALLS OF INDUSTRIAL POLICY
Regarding the article "Industrial policy" (Cover Story, Apr. 6): There is a big difference between having government funds allocated to commercial research and development in the private sector and the expansion of the federal technology Establishment to conduct commercially oriented research and development. Your article seems to suggest the latter. I strongly suggest that the former would be more productive.
Donald M. Carlton
The individualist entrepreneurs who drive our nascent biotech and high-technology industries would suffocate under the miasmal corruption of Gucci Gulch. Approach this gift from Washington and Harvard with caution. Keep the deficit crowd out. The Japanese analogue that our industrial policy would most resemble would not be keiretsu or the Ministry of International Trade & Industry, but hara kiri.
Charles L. Bricant III
Your article proves the correctness of Thomas Paine's statement that "A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong gives it a superficial appearance of being right . . . ." Interference in the free-market process, and especially in innovation, never really works, besides being rationally and morally wrong.
You want to choose people who cannot even regulate their own lives, give them billions of dollars, and have them lead us into the promised land? No thanks.
William W. Morgan