Not ("stretching") at all. Ferdinand and Isabella were joining the venture as one among many private investors for Columbus' proposed adventure. More than half the funding for the entire venture was put up by private Italian merchants etc. that Columbus had lined up. Columbus himself and his crew took up large equity/profit-sharing positions for their service, instead of salaries like a modern government-funded project would entail.
Another aspect of "privateness" was illustrated by the fact that Columbus had asked the King of Portugal before asking the Queen of Castille (Spain), and Henry VII of England was persuaded by Columbus' brother to come forward with funding but the news reached Columbus too late as he already committed himself to Isabella (and Ferdinand). The competition ensured that even if Isabella (and Ferdinand) had refused Columbus, he would indeed have gotten his venture funded from elsewhere, as he indeed received historically. The "governments" of those royal heads 500 years were nothing like modern concept of government territorial monopolies. Those royal heads were best thought of as large landlords who did not really hold monopoly over the merchants and men of ideas, but had to compete for their allegiences and services. Isabella's financiers eventually paid Columbus out of various royal accounts, private accounts, for her share of the funding.
Incidentally, the peer review groups at the Portugese and Castillian courts were correct in pointing out that Columbus' calculation of the earth's diameter was wrong (too short). What they did not account for was the possibility of land between Azores and India/China. Portugese explorer Bathelomeo Diaz was already in the process of rounding the Cape of Good Hope, so the King of Portugal was not particularly interested in alternative routes. The landlords owning Castille, Aragon and England on the other hand were very interested.
The real mechanism that makes private sector work better than government sector is free-wheeling competition/choice vs. regulatory monopoly. The economic landscape of Europe 500+ years ago was certainly more akin to free-wheeling competition/choice among various large landowners (some "sovereigns" were not even that large), not modern nationalistic regulatory monopolies.
posted by 24.91.39...
Posts in this Thread:
Members can receive an alert when someone posts in this thread.
- OT: Space shuttle, Eric Law, Fri, 8 Jul 2011 05:53:10
- Please..., Eric Law, Mon, 11 Jul 2011 04:46:52
- Re: OT: Space shuttle, brick8 , Fri, 8 Jul 2011 12:09:07
- I'll cheer..., nwas, Fri, 8 Jul 2011 08:34:19
- It's been quite a while, AdamB , Tue, 12 Jul 2011 09:33:51
- I guess we should all still be living in caves......, MI-Roger , Sat, 9 Jul 2011 13:06:57
- That would be the result, Reality, Sat, 9 Jul 2011 13:56:06
- Re: That would be the result, Eric Law, Sun, 10 Jul 2011 18:10:50
- Re: That would be the result, Reality, Sun, 10 Jul 2011 21:37:54
- Re: That would be the result, James, Mon, 11 Jul 2011 06:51:50
- Perhaps..., Eric Law, Mon, 11 Jul 2011 04:43:19
- Re: Perhaps..., TML, Tue, 12 Jul 2011 10:40:16
- Yeah, Eric Law, Wed, 13 Jul 2011 04:12:02
- Re: Perhaps..., Reality, Tue, 12 Jul 2011 11:43:36
- Re: Perhaps..., Reality, Mon, 11 Jul 2011 12:06:32
- Uh..., Eric Law, Mon, 11 Jul 2011 14:39:02
- Re: Uh..., Reality, Mon, 11 Jul 2011 15:08:54
- Re: Uh..., kkelley, Wed, 13 Jul 2011 15:12:11
- Agree!, Reality, Fri, 8 Jul 2011 16:36:58
- Re: I'll cheer..., TML, Fri, 8 Jul 2011 14:20:12
- I think I can handle 0.5% of the federal budget, rob 96 aero, Fri, 8 Jul 2011 11:27:00
- Re: I'll cheer..., NCCaniac , Fri, 8 Jul 2011 09:26:41
Post a Followup
The content on this site may not be republished without permission. Copyright © 1988-2012 - The Saab Network - saabnet.com.
This is a moderated bulletin board - Posting is a privilege, not a right.
Unsolicited commercial postings are not allowed (no Spam). Please, no For Sale or Wanted postings, SERIOUSLY.
Classifieds are to be listed in The Saab Network Classifieds pages.
This is a problem solving forum for over 250,000 Saab owners, so expect to see
problems discussed here even though our cars are generally very reliable. This is not an anything goes
type of forum. Saabnet.com has been a moderated forum since 1988. For usage guidelines, see the
Saabnet.com Mission and Purpose Page. Please remember that you are
not anonymous. Site Donations
Your address is: 184.108.40.206 - Using CCBot/2.0 - Logged.
Site Members do not see red text instructions, green links, and bottom of the page banners.
Click here to see all
the Site Membership Benefits!