Amil Niazi in a sobering article about ambition, COVID, women, mothers, and late-stage capitalism.
twenty-seven things tagged “capitalism”
On Twitter, a year after that video:
I know people who’ve worked there (none of whom are with the company, mercifully) and have heard nothing but fascinating tales of dysfunction, fiefdoms, sinecures, overwork, and bureaucracy. One engineer told me that, of all the bad places he’d worked at, he felt his “soul dying slowly” at Oracle. It’s a generic and very real Evil Corporation™, and probably the company the protagonists in Office Space work at.
And this wouldn’t be too far-fetched a thought. Consider that the producers of Terminator: Genisys, who are an Oracle Co-Founders’s own children, based “Cyberdyne Systems, the fictional defense company responsible for the creation of the evil AI Skynet” on their dad’s company. Amazing.
Because we don’t simply write non-annoying and non-creepy software that respects you and does the thing you want it to do anymore. Gotta deliver Value™ to all key stakeholders. By which we mean ourselves and the Market. Not you. You are nothing more than Data that taps “Purchase” to us.
I cannot help rewatch this powerful scene from “Margin Call”. A masterclass in acting by the great Jeremy Irons.
Every sentence, glance, and gesture projects complete and menacing presence, power, and finality, and is done to absolute perfection 👌
A simple-enough argument about a dangerous, toxic worldview.
[…] To highlight that contradiction let’s try to explain these facts with individualist logic. Women and non-white people, by sheer coincidence, all individually chose to be paid less for more demanding jobs. Also by coincidence, they chose to work those jobs and be paid less than women and non-white people in other similarly developed countries. Simultaneously, people born in the same zip codes all just happened to make choices that led them to similar incomes, similar lifespans, and similar rates of disease. Those born to poor families chose, with little or no outside influence, to work lower paying jobs. The rich also chose, of their own accord and without significant systemic advantages, to work higher paying jobs. The huge differences in the inequalities between America and other wealthy nations is also a coincidence caused by Americans choosing to be lazier.
Rather than consider that centuries of enslavement and systemic racism has sabotaged the quality of life for black americans, individualists insist that black individuals choose to live in poverty more frequently than non-black people. Rather than consider that society exists, individualists have created a web of absurdities and chosen to live there. They also insist that none of these absurdities are racist, sexist, or classist. We shouldn’t temper our language here: anyone who claims that individual choices rather than systems entirely determine how most people live should be dismissed outright. It’s an embarrassing and absurd worldview and even the tiniest bit of research should make that clear.
[…] Individualism is a worldview created not to explain the world but to control it. It’s designed to fragment strong communities, turn workers against each other, and diminish the power of solidarity among the people. When you see yourself as the morally upright hero and everyone else has competition, you’re turning your back on what it means to be human. There’s plenty to go around, or at least there would be if it weren’t all funneled straight to the top, to the people who manufactured the idea of individualism.
See also: “We Ought to Live in a Society, not an Economy”
Not sure why this actually got to me.
- Personal Exceptionalism
“I am special.”
- Dichotomous Thinking
“X is sh*t. Y is genius.”
- Correct Overgeneralization
“I see two dots and draw the right line.”
- Blank-Canvas Thinking
“Painting by numbers isn’t art. And I want to make art.”
“I am a creative destruction machine.”
TL;DR be a ruthless, inflexible, self-absorbed dick so you can identify, refine, and deliver Value™.
See also: “Where profits come from”
I read this story a long while ago and have been searching for it since. I have related increasingly exaggerated variants of it from memory every few years to friends who laugh nervously when I lose my damn mind to the “She just went home I guess” part.
To me, few things are funnier than stories of the wittingly incompetent and their inadvertent courage in this boring, rigged dystopia we live in.
Watched with LD. Kate Winslet is an amazing actor and this miniseries is her best work yet. It is excellent everything: story, score, cinematography, dialogue, casting, acting. About economic depression, blue-collar America, forgotten America, the opioid epidemic caused by unchecked Capitalist greed, community, family, single parenthood, decline in religious participation, and the country’s abysmal attitude towards the treatment of mental illness.
That’s a lot of layers and facets and it’s all done exquisitely, gut-wrenchingly well.
“Come back or get fired. We didn’t build this giant spaceship for nothing. And how’s our overpaid middle-management supposed to micro-manage you?”
Neil Panchal on substituting shitty, ineffective, and expensive consumer-grade items with their industrial and military grade equivalents. Emphases mine:
For I wouldn’t have any friends left if I did that. ↩︎
One of the most disheartening charts I’ve seen about the current hyperpartisan political climate. We fear each other so much more.
I suppose all’s fine and dandy if you’re in news or social media and are spiritually obligated to deliver Value™ to stakeholders via those almighty engagement metrics that do nothing more than sow rancor among people who have a lot more in common than they’re led to believe. All Facebook does is hold a mirror up to society. All the news media does is report. Ethics and responsibility are for the Value™-illiterate. The only thing that matters, as the society and country you and your children live in devours itself, is making gobs of cash.
Value™ must be delivered to stakeholders at any and all cost 🏏
Because the only thing that matters is delivering Value to shareholders. (cached)
Incidentally, and to the “huh” of many Value-illiterate people, defending totalitarian governments is exactly how one gives “people the power to build community and bring the world closer together.”
By Jace Avery
So why can’t the World’s Richest Man fund a paper as “critical” as the Washington Post in perpetuity?
Pictures taken 100 years apart. The image at the bottom is 18 years old.
I’m sure we can solve this with privatization, deregulation, lowering taxes on the rich, and letting an unfettered Free Market “figure it out” ♥️
, ThriftBooks, and Bookshop are three alternatives to purchasing books on Amazon. Powell’s is withdrawing from the Amazon Marketplace: “The vitality of our neighbors and neighborhoods depends on the ability of local businesses to thrive. We will not participate in undermining that vitality.”