There are quite a few analysts who have Facebook pegged at long-term 10% of it's current valuation. And some that have it a long-term 0. Facebook is good at solving a problem. It's just not a problem that makes it worth 184 times earnings.
And guess what, we issue about 3-5k of them a year, which happens to be exactly what he says he wants.
Of course, O1 requires under penalty real certification of excellence.
What Mr. Graham really wants of course is to find promising young programmers, bring them to the US for next to nothing, pay them a middling wage, and then cut him or her loose as soon that venture goes tits up. Then we have another programmer floating around, willing to work for below market wages.
I'll say it: there's not a shortage of programmers, there's a shortage of valid business plans. That's SV's real problem.
Exactly. That is perfect. Silicon Valley culture sucks. The best don't all want to work there, toiling on some stupid app or web project that's going to crash and burn when Series A dry's up and you can't raise Series B.
I have a few thoughts:
1. Mr. Graham can drop dead. I had to look up who this guy is, Y Combinator has produced such companies as:
Scribd, reddit, Airbnb, Dropbox, Disqus, Stripe
These are not the companies that make the US a "tech superpower". We have a document sharing company, an online community that is 33% porn, 33% cats, and 33% reposts, a house-sharing operation that is constantly on the run from regulators, a company that resells cloud storage to end users, a company that facilitates cat-posts online, and a credit card payment processor. News flash, the world let alone the United States does not revolve around Silicon Valley and your narrow alleged needs. This guy is crazy if he thinks we are going to screw with the iron clad law of supply-and-demand and let in a "few thousand programmers" for no good reason.
2. Mr. Graham knows that he can already get in the very best programmers. We have plenty of avenues for letting in the very best. For one, it means, we have a real shortage. Secondly, it might mean we educate them here. Finally, it may mean you have to really invest in attracting the top talent internationally. That may mean - gasp - setting up foreign operations, and then domesticating the worker after a few years. That's right, Mr. Graham, years. What he really means is "we want to attract the best programmers, for cheap, chain them to a job, and then wash our hands of them when the job dries up or it doesn't work out".
3. This is yet another case of an over-privileged idiot trying to social costs and privatize profits.
4. The reason you can't find as many American top programmers to work for you is because Silicon Valley sucks. The culture sucks, the location (esp. real estate) sucks, the working environment sucks, the stability sucks. It's just another gold rush scenario, this time with Aeron chairs and floor to ceiling whiteboards, and lots of fast talk. And let's be honest. The work sucks. Most of these starts up are doing nothing at all really useful. A huge majority will fail, suddenly, having wasted everyone's time and someone poor suckers money. Spinning this as disruptive, or revolutionary is sad, and a lot of people are jaded against it. The company structure sucks. There are many programmers who have been to three, four, five failed startup operations, going through the same stress, the same pain, the same loss only to end up being told they are now too old for another try at the pie. There are no plans to provide for a long-term company, no hope for a business that is lasting and built upon solving problems that people are willing to pay to have solved.
5. The fact that Mr. Graham and his friends can't attract a few thousand of the best of the best to work for them just means that the costs outweigh the rewards. Instead of fixing their toxic culture, failing mentality, and gold rush dynamic, they want to break the country further. Because they feel entitled to have what they want, without putting in the years, or decades that other industries have to make it to stability. They've already been given a subsidized work force, where they feel entitled to reap the top talent for middling pay, massive cultural influence, outsized political influence, and regulatory preferences. And yet, they've done almost nothing for the country. We are plus 10 new billionaires, but there has been no standard of living bump for most Americans.
TLDR: Drop dead, Mr. Graham. You do something for the country, and the rest of flyover territory will think about doing something for you.
I think it's sad that people in your area are so poor they can't afford basic transportation, but also so economically secure that no one is willing to become an Uber driver and give people rides during non-peak hours at regular rates. And it's doubly sad that the combination of poverty and economic security you are describing is completely immune to changes in the price of car rides. That place must truly be cursed.
Arguing is rarely rewarding period. But these discussions hone my and others' understanding of the world. Understanding of the world can be rewarding.
I'm always hoping thought can win out over feelings -- especially negative feelings like envy.
Once people realize they're paying more than conventional cabs, they'll be gone.
If so, it's a self-correcting problem. If not, customers must be satisfied with Uber's service and pricing. Either way, there's no reason for anyone besides Uber and Uber's customers to be involved in the decision.
Why should you get a first-class airline seat just because you are rich? Because you're willing to pay the amount it costs. Do you also want to ban eBay auctions? Why should people be able to buy what they want on eBay just because they are the high bidder?
Please cite an instance when this was banned somewhere and it caused good things. Until you do, I will assert that such a ban has never achieved a single positive result anywhere.
That should lure every driver, including drivers who are tired, or distant, or taking a day off, out onto the roads to serve the people who need rides. When people need a ride, that's when you want drivers to have a big incentive to provide them.
If it's too expensive for you, either wait or find another way. Then someone else who needs it more or values it more can get a ride. Why should you get a ride ahead of someone who values a ride more than you?
Different people value their time vs. their money differently. The "price gouging" whine is essentially: my value choices are more important than your value choices because
And the result is that more people wait a longer time and drivers get paid less. And people who would become drivers to make some easy money driving only at peak times -- in other words, when they are needed most -- don't bother.
People are worse off overall, but sympathy is served.
Uber should create an algorithm to automatically detect when people will start whining to politicians about "price gouging".
Then they can send their extra drivers home -- drivers who would be happy to provide high-priced rides. And they can make riders wait for hours -- riders who would be happy to get a ride now, even if it meant paying a high price. Everyone will be poorly served, but no one will be "price gouging".
Now build the same dam out of aluminum and repeat the experiment.
If you check it, they charge you $25.
Why do you keep repeating facts? You're interfering with story-time.
These people will inevitably hurt the people they interact with. You can spot destructive people by what they say. The claim they'll "redefine discipline" and "change our culture".
Non-destructive people would say "we're studying different approaches", "we'll try things and see what works", "we may not redefine discipline or drastically change the culture, but maybe we'll come up with something that works". Humility is the key. Without it, you end up hurting people recklessly or accidentally.