Silicon Valley has a solution for everything, but who do its ideas really serve? Every Thursday, Paris Marx is joined by a new guest to critically examine the tech industry, its thought leaders, and the worldview it spreads. They challenge the notion that tech alone can drive our world forward by showing that separating tech from politics has consequences for us all, especially the most vulnerable. But if tech won't save us, what will? This podcast isn't simply about tearing tech down; it also presents radical ideas for tech designed for human flourishing instead of surveillance, acquisitions, or to boost stock prices. A better world is possible, and so is better technology.
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Tech Billionaires Are Reshaping US Politics w/ Jacob Silverman
Paris Marx is joined by Jacob Silverman to discuss Elon Musk’s Twitter takeover, the politics of the PayPal Mafia tech billionaires, and how they’re trying to reshape US political discourse to serve themselves.
Jacob Silverman is a journalist who writes for The New Republic, The Baffler, Slate, and many others. He’s also the co-author of Easy Money: Cryptocurrency, Casino Capitalism, and the Golden Age of Fraud with Ben McKenzie. Follow Jacob on Twitter at @SilvermanJacob.
Tech Won’t Save Us offers a critical perspective on tech, its worldview, and wider society with the goal of inspiring people to demand better tech and a better world. Follow the podcast (@techwontsaveus) and host Paris Marx (@parismarx) on Twitter, support the show on Patreon, and sign up for the weekly newsletter.
The podcast is produced by Eric Wickham and part of the Harbinger Media Network.
Also mentioned in this episode:
- Jacob wrote about Musk’s Twitter acquisition for The Baffler and the politics of David Sacks and these other tech billionaires for The New Republic.
- Paris wrote about Musk’s Twitter acquisition for NBC News and Marc Andreessen’s housing politics for Business Insider.
- The Delaware court case revealed text messages between Elon Musk and all the people trying to gain his favor.
- Saudi Arabia had an intelligence operation running through Twitter, which led some former employees to be charged with spying. Saudi Arabia has imprisoned people over their tweets.
- There were accusations that Twitter had an Indian official associated with the far-right Modi government on payroll.
- Banks are expecting to suffer major losses on the loans provided to Musk to acquire Twitter.
- The LA Times reported that Twitter bots helped build the cult of Musk.
- In 2016, Thiel and Sacks’ Diversity Myth comments were resurrected and Thiel has to issue a statement.