JS Mill and the banking crisis

Wordlenet_on_mill Sitting on the runway at La Guardia, I started wondering what happens to capital now that so many banks are owned by bigger banks or government. 

Culture and commerce take turns as the engines of innovation in our world, and you might say both of them have fallen relatively silent.  Without them we are vulnerable to "prevailing opinion and feeling" and the eagerness of people to impose terms. 

Protection…against the tyranny of the magistrate is not enough: there needs protection also against the tyranny of the prevailing opinion and feeling; against the tendency of society to impose, by other means than civil penalties, its own ideas and practices as rules of conduct on those who dissent from them, to fetter the development, and, if possible, prevent the formation, of any individuality not in harmony with its ways and compel all characters to fashion themselves upon the model of its own.  (JS Mill, On Liberty)

To take the obvious example, I wonder if the capital that animated Silicon Valley a few years ago would be available this time around?   Or does a government hand in the marketplace discourage risk and innovation?


Mill, John Stewart.  On Liberty.  Location 99 – 104.  Kindle pagination.