Good morning, All,
Let’s all take a breath. Meaning, take a brief overview of what’s been going on lately:
1. A 17 year-old’s company was bought by Yahoo! for $30 million. Revenue: $0 Downloads: 1 million+. The app was disabled the day of the acquisition. Then there are the facts of the story that were not reported in this ‘remarkable’ story. Reality check: young Summly founder Nick d’Aloisio’s dad is a VP at Morgan Stanley. His mother is an attorney for a very prestigious law firm. Which helps to explain why Yoko Ono, Wendy Deng, Stephen Fry, Ashton Kutcher, Li Ka-shing, and other investors were so quick to fund it. He wasn’t just some kid coding from his bedroom in Wimbledon.
2. Y-Combinator just graduated its latest class of copycats startups: 47 companies, down from 66. Investors were unimpressed. 47? Really??? How do you mentor/accelerator 47 companies in 3 months without defying the laws of physics and common sense?
3. Because of asset seizures, I am starting my new company outside California. Has to do with California’s Prop 30, to help fund the state’s budget, and the retroactive tax. “This is not a tax,” writes Bryan Goldberg. “This is an asset seizure plain and simple. It is no different than when Hugo Chavez used the benign-sounding ‘nationalize’ to describe his seizure of private property in Venezuela.” This, while Cali’s public sector employees get private sector wages and then some: Alameda County official to retire with $400K yearly ($423,664 for life, to be exact).
@bgoldberg: I'm leaving California. Will take bad weather over bad government...
Many public sector employees are now earning higher salaries than their private sector counterparts, while the technology that we create as entrepreneurs have certainly helped to curtail our privacy. Open government is a popular term but beware of newspeak. When California passed Prop 30 to help balance the state budget and aid education (we’re always suspicious when we hear that one: a lot of laws are enacted and taxes levied in the name of education. At this point, the US must have the most state of the art schools in the world, not to mention the best-educated students, but such is not the case), was it to allow public officials to retire on more than the President himself earns? If governments are going to reach into our pockets to pay outrageous retirement packages of so-called public servants, time to cap those packages, too. Which can also be made retroactive: the precedence is there, and thank you, Prop 30.