A Silicon Valley Wake Up Call


We often talk about the ways that Silicon Valley is selfless. How we improve lives with world changing technology. How we spend our time helping other, younger entrepreneurs. But we rarely spend time talking about the ways that Silicon Valley is selfish.

I must admit that most of my last decade building and investing in tech companies has been spent trying to figure out how to make my businesses work for me. How do you get users to click on more things? How do you get them to spend more time or more money? How do we raise more money, increase our value, sell our company, enrich ourselves? Silicon Valley is the Wall Street of the 80s: Greed is good. For us, the market has been the ultimate arbitrator of value: if you make a product lots of people use and give you money for, you’ve definitionally done something that has made a positive impact in the world. Because here it has been possible to make an incredible fortune so quickly, clearly Silicon Valley must be changing the world!

Visit http://bloom.bg/2fXKRNT for the full Bloomberg interview. Original airdate 11/16/2016.

This week was an eye opener for me. In coastal bubbles a Trump presidency was literally inconceivable. Silicon Valley was optimizing around the margins; the main battle finished, it was picking new battles (sometimes with Thiel affiliates who were pro-Hillary!). The election results showed something completely different: 50% of voting Americans, and the majority of the electoral college sent a giant Fuck You to the establishment and went Trump.

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