A Couple High Tech Votes In Favor Of The Future

Amid all the hand wringing over Tim Geithner’s flop a lot of people have overlooked a couple pretty positive developments. They aren’t big macroeconomic events, just two good examples of why this country shouldn’t be counted out yet and what it is that will really lead us out of the current morass.

Intel announced that it plans to invest $7 billion to upgrade its American manufacturing facilities. While they no doubt have a strong business case for their actions, they also had an interesting take on why they’re undertaking these moves now. Paul Otellini, Intel’s CEO, said that one of the reasons for investing in the middle of a slump was to give consumers and businesses reasons for optimism. How’s that for a change of pace. Instead of a President warning of catastrophe we have a businessman saying that better days will come and we’re putting our money on it.

Cisco calmly went out yesterday and raised $4 billion. Not only was the move dramatic but the credit markets easily absorbed the issue. Remember this the next time you hear the talk about a lack of credit strangling the economy. Good names can and are raising money on very favorable terms. More to the point, Cisco’s actions mirror the same optimism about the future. What do they plan to use the money for? Acquisitions. You usually don’t borrow $4 billion and plan to use it to buy companies unless you have a pretty upbeat opinion of the future.

Yes, the banks and the financial system are a problem. They have to be fixed and the sooner and more ruthlessly the better. But there is a whole lot more to this economy than that sorry group of charlatans. Keep your eyes on the real wealth creators. If they were turning tail and running you would have a reason to really be worried. They aren’t.

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