Some of the deepest foundations of my ideal political framework are based on the concept that incentives are far more effective than legislation or subsidies. I was a huge fan of the X-prize, and some of the recent crowdsourcing methods recently employed by DARPA. Never has the saying, “If you’re not a part of the solution, there’s good money to be made In prolonging the problem” been more relevant than it is with today’s medical research and oil companies. If even a fraction of the money we spend on medication and gasoline were to go into crowdsourcing prizes to be awarded to those who meet benchmarks for disease eradication and clean energy, the prize would be too enormous to ignore in very short order.
One of my favorite thoughts on this relates to medical research. Right now, we have a system that seems designed to prolong health problems. Why spend money researching simple solutions? Those are hard to patent. Why research early detection and prevention? That just removes a potential customer. Why cure a disease when you can sell an expensive and lifelong medicine subscription? Government funded research is generally what is floated as a solution, but it has become a pool of stagnation and corruption. When was the last time the government solved a medical issue and the patents didn’t end up with one of the big drug companies?
What I propose is a crowdsourced X-Prize in place of research funding. Whoever meets the requirements for curing the medical issue, gets the cash, and the proceeds from the patents go toward the funding of the other X-Prizes. I really think this could snowball into big money and real cures.