Correcting the Record on Operation Warp Speed and Industrial Policy

Source: Cato Institute
by Scott Lincicome

“As President Biden picks up the ‘industrial policy’ baton from Donald Trump, it has become accepted wisdom that ‘Operation Warp Speed’ (OWS) shows how such policy can surmount ‘market failures’ to achieve major national objectives. The Biden administration’s new report on ‘critical supply chains,’ for example, uses OWS to justify its industrial‐​policy proposals, and in doing so links to work calling OWS ‘a triumph and validation of industrial policy.’ … This potted, bipartisan history, however, omits crucial facts that turn OWS from a clear ‘industrial‐​policy success’ to, at best, a useful complement to incredible private‐​sector efforts and, at worst, a cautionary tale of how industrial policy can impede such efforts.” (07/08/21)