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Entrepreneurs 1 -- Pirates 0

Mark Marich

Through the Policy Dialogue on Entrepreneurship we like to talk about the importance of creating an entrepreneurial ecosphere to stimulate economic growth. We also believe strongly that an essential element of that is a culture that recognizes opportunities and is willing to accept risk in their pursuit. It's a culture that many around the world feel is prevalent here in the U.S... including "a slightly envious Briton".

Guy Kingston, who offers advice to entrepreneurs at Mind Your Own Business, watched the news reports about the Maersk Alabama being taken by pirates off the Somali coast. What amazed him wasn't the rescue effort, it was the response of the crew: 

What happened next demonstrates why – and also shows how – America remains the Land of Enterprise.

The significant point is not the subsequent rescue of the ship’s captain – other nations also have competent special forces – but the immediate and instinctive reaction of the civilian crew.

The American sailors themselves took the initiative in forcing the pirates off the ship.

This is typical of the “get up and go” that still makes Americans the role models for entrepreneurs throughout the world.

Congressman Ron Paul continued the theme by recommending a free-market solution to combat piracy--letters of marque and reprisal. Not used since the War of 1812, this system would allow private bounty hunters to patrol the seas. While I like the idea of enterprising solutions to the world's problems, I could do without the inevitable explosion of cable TV shows like "Dog the Bounty Hunter: Hitting the High Seas."

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