Where much of the discussion at the 2014 Global Financial Leadership Conference focused on monetary policy and the international outlook on geopolitics, Steve Forbes presented a domestic vision for the United States.
The two-time Republican Presidential candidate and publisher of Forbes Media touched on a few areas he believes the U.S. can begin to shift direction and become a stronger global presence. He cited financial regulation, healthcare and the perception of the U.S. around the world as places where innovation and economic growth will bring needed changes.
“Bottom line. Right now, we’re going through a chaotic period, but it’s setting the stage of an extraordinary period of prosperity,” he says. “You can feel it in terms of the entrepreneurial energy in this country and around the world. This is a pause. It’s not the permanent state of affairs.”
Forbes suggested that the new Republican-controlled Congress in the U.S. should take on healthcare and Dodd-Frank as part of their new agenda.
But he mainly focused his remarks on the long term, and how a strong economy can be attained through risk-taking, innovation and embracing capitalism. He cited the large failure rate among Silicon Valley startups as a sign of the U.S. economy’s reemergence.
“The only way you get ahead is through taking risks. In Silicon Valley, you get this huge mass of failure, but out of it you get this great growth. You can’t succeed unless you try.”
In a Q&A with CME Group CEO Phupinder Gill, Forbes also touched on how his media company has navigated the massive shift to digital platforms in the past several years.
“Our world has been turned upside down by the web. The model we had since the 1830s has gone by the boards,” he says.
Despite the shift, the print version of Forbes still runs 1,200-1,300 articles in the magazine per year. Forbes.com is made up of about 1,500 contributors who are paid by the traffic they generate, he says.
The publishing model has received lots of attention in both the journalism and content marketing worlds for its early embrace of a blog-style platform that includes thousands of contributors rather than a staff of writers.