Yesterday Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, said this: "There is a third political party emerging in this country called: 'CEOs.' More than 100 are already involved in turning Indiana around!"
Something about that didn't feel right, so I said so. A discussion ensued.
What is it that doesn't feel right? Well, who owns the other two political parties, if he's starting the third one? Same people. So if we're going to start another political party, shouldn't it be one where my voice matters?
It's so fucked up. Here's a guy who is interviewed on TV, has a conference that takes over the city of SF. He donates to hospitals and they change the name to Benioff, as if it were a member of his family. He is one of the most listened-to people there are. And now he's boasting, on Facebook of all places (one of the few places it feels like my voice might matter just a bit, I know it's an illusion, planned by psychiatrists) that he's formed the third party and guess who it represents? The same people as the other two.
You could say that's just the way it is, and that's the way it always has been, but it doesn't mean I have to like it, and it doesn't mean it's always going to be that way.
I don't like tech, for this reason. They've so simplified the world, it's just what matters to them that matters. 100 CEOs signed the petition. That's the size of the world for Benioff. I know his PR people say otherwise, but I think a little truth just leaked out there.
One more thing: You want a real crusade Mr Benioff -- let's get rid of Citizens United and restore some of the power to the people. That would show real conviction.
PS: Liz Gannes calls out the tech leaders for hypocrisy. She makes a good point. While they're taking political action against Indiana discriminating against gays, they're not doing much about gender discrimination in tech. However, no mention of age discrimination in her piece, and in another piece by the same author today she refers to seniors as "old fogies." Tech, including reporters, needs to learn something more basic -- respect for people.