I have a couple patents, and like most companies, the company I work for owns my patent. Most USA patents are like that. Very few are owned by individuals.
Very few people can afford the cost to file a patent and then the whole risk to profit from it.
So I don't see any carrot. My carrot is my annual salary which remains the same, regardless whether I file 0 patents or 100 patents. And the decision to file a patent is not mine. It's my company's decision. So counting the quantity of patents isn't necessarily a good way to measure innovation. Some of the most innovative people I've met had very few patents.
By the way, America doesn't fail when it comes to innovation. I tell my people at work the following; "Innovation and ideas is the easy part. The hard part is implementation and execution. That where most things fail."