I think the government funding should be involved right up to the point the first cost-effective IEC plant goes into operation. Then the gold rush will be on (if we are correct about the economics) and the gov't just needs to get out of the way.
Of course, if we are wrong about the economics and IEC fusion is no more capable of producing power at competitive prices than tokamak fusion then this whole line of research is just an expensive science project, in which case gov't funding will hopefully get us far enough to discover that, then dry up if and when that is ascertained.
BTW, there is serious VC money chasing IEC fusion for p-b11. Tri-Alpha (get it?) got $40M last year.
If we had tacked on a 20% profit for corporations to the CCC & WPA projects, those programs wouldn't have been anywhere as effective in providing jobs. And the recovery would have lagged
Unfortunately, most of those programs probably actually made the Depression worse for the vast majority of people who did not have government jobs, by ruining businesses that now had to compete with government agencies that did not have to operate at a profit. There is no substitute for free (but properly regulated!) markets.
The Glass-Steagal Act saved the country by forcibly de-linking insurance, banking, and equity markets, so that (inevitable) business failures and insurance shocks did not cascade into economic panics.
The CCC & WPA provided jobs, something that we are in dire need of in this country at this time.
Actually, unemployment is pretty low by historical standards, and we're in the midst of the longest continuous consecutive string of months with positive job creation in our history.
http://data.bls.gov/PDQ/servlet/SurveyO ... NS14000000
We have been in a recession for a few years now
I'm always mystified that so many intelligent people believe this.
Strictly speaking, there has not been a recession (two consecutive quarters of decline in real GDP) in the United States for 17 years.