and @Fred Stein
If you were the Congressman, Senator, or US President, what would you like to do with the US semiconductor manufacturing and the industry as a whole?
Here’s what I would do. Starting with some history.
1945: Vannevar Bush, “Science the Endless Frontier”. This Is the eloquent, very influential document for why the US government supports scientific research. https://www.nsf.gov/od/lpa/nsf50/vbush1945.htm#ch3.8
After 1945, Universities receive government support, while industry does not, in the US.
Bush set the US on a path with a balance between government support, for basic research, and free market competition.
1980s: Antitrust law changes under Reagan, allowing a merger boom. This sets the US in the direction of merging businesses rather than innovating.
1994: NAFTA opens US markets up to Mexico and Canada manufacturing.
2001: China joins WTO and more outsourcing of manufacturing occurs.
2024: The hypothetical benb presidency. To address monopolization, the safe harbors that permit M&A discussions would be treated as collusion and result in jail time. This would end all mergers. Higher interest rates would address financialization. Innovation rot is harder to address, in the short term; mergers drying up helps as it will create more competition, which is ultimately where innovation comes from.
In the short term, I wouldn’t play the quick fix game, with CHIPs act type bills. That is reinforcing the monopolies, not breaking them up.
In the mid-term, I would create a sovereign wealth fund to invest in small companies with a long time horizon. Smaller investments, in small businesses, since I want smaller businesses, not bigger. And it would need to be blue ocean in the sense it wouldn’t fund a Foundry 300mm fab but the US first 8inch SiC fab would be OK. The pool of money would be operated by ex-venture capital. They would do annual reports and seek to grow the fund by 20% a year, with higher risk/higher return investments, favoring job creation over exits. Exits of course would be impossible since you’d go to jail, if I was president.