After The Second Congressional Hearing, Tech Billionaires Are Untouchable.
Congress couldn’t reset a WiFi router, let alone regulate tech giants.
Yesterday, the tech industry titans: Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Sundar Pichai of Google, Tim Cook of Apple, and Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, testified before Congress. If you were instead busy looking at Covid-19 death rates breaking records again, Donald Trump claiming he would delay the presidential election, or plain-clothed federal officials in Portland kidnapping civilians in broad daylight, yeah, let’s say it’s been a long week.
Good news for those who eschewed: there was no reason to watch. A Google Search of the hearing brings up articles mentioning promising terms such as “grilled,” “roasted,” “attacked,” and “coming under fire” — one of them is even from The Washington Post (ironic).
It sure sounds significant! Tech giants and billionaires chastised like misbehaving children! Surely they will learn their lesson and quit stealing the Keebler Chocolate Chips from the cookie jar.
“Bezos, who owns 11.1% of the company, [is] worth a record-breaking $182.6 billion as of market close on Wednesday — the highest net worth Forbes has recorded in nearly four decades of tracking billionaires.” — Forbes.com
Like the reporters of those ridiculous news articles, I too wish to live in a world where we could put Mark Zuckerberg in “time-out” and fix socio-political issues such as rampant misinformation through stern words and sticker sheets. Instead, we live in reality with infectious diseases and inane hearings, where the members of the United States Congress look more like my secondary-school Speech and Debate team.
Hopefully, no one is still under the delusion that Bezos, Zuckerberg, and the rest genuinely care about what the government thinks — the only reason hearings are occurring in the first place is because Silicon Valley doesn’t have decades of lobbyist groups funneling money into Washington. Just wait a few more years; Bezos buys every Congressperson a new yacht, and we no longer have these circus shows on cable. Good riddance.
An open letter to our country’s politicians:
Silicon Valley (and every other tech giant) see you as doddering, enfeebled bureaucrats unable to solve the world issues they believe “big tech” can fix. You are not doing much to prove them wrong.
They view you like a mother when her 6-year old son brings her his crayon drawings: “Aww, so cute! Have some lobbyist funds!”
Tech companies are not scared of someone who does not understand that Facebook runs ads to make money. Please, for the love of God, hire a staffer with a degree in Computer Science. At this point, if they have coding stickers on their laptop, I would recruit them on the spot. You’ll thank me.
Teddy Roosevelt sued 45 companies under the Sherman Act, and Taft sued 75. The Clayton Act, the Sherman Act, the Federal Trade Commission Act; a whole unit in freshman year American Civics. Relying on the President, though, is foolish — I would be shocked if our orange ball of treason could name three separate Constitutional Amendments.
2020 is not our year, is it?