A new economy

At a Newhouse School/New Yorker event yesterday, Gary Hart said that President Obama (presuming) could not rebuild a 20th century economy out of this wreckage but will need to build a 21st century economy.

That is what I tried to argue in this post about the Google economy — or rather, the new economy that already exists that we can see through the lens of Google. I’ve turned it into an op-ed my agent is flogging now.

Also at the event, former senator Bob Kerrey, now president of the New School, gave an eloquent and passionate defense of the new media economy and how new it is. He reminded the audience that Jerry Brown wowed the nation in the ’92 debates when he held up a 1-800 number. Wow, how hip, we thought. Kerrey said he reads papers and magazines only out of habit and he revels in getting so many more sources for news today. Asked whether media are better today, he didn’t hesitate answering yes.

He also admitted to watching collections of Joe Biden gaffes on YouTube the day before. He likes Biden. But “it was hilarious.”

I asked whether and how government – rather than just politics and its coverage – would change because of the internet. He said that if Obama wins and appoints Jamie Dimon as Treasury Secretary and more like him, we’ll see “technology used to reduce the overall size of government,” especially at regulatory and administrative levels.

One more note: Kerrey has a sense of humor we should wish for in a president. Made me wish I’d paid more attention to his presidential campaign in the day.