Every generation expands its definition of equality…
Now it’s time for our generation to define a new social contract. We should have a society that measures progress not just by economic metrics like GDP but by how many of us have a role we find meaningful. We should explore ideas like universal basic income to make sure everyone has a cushion to try new ideas.
-Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO
Here we go. Get ready for the media to start hammering the basic income meme.
Why is someone worth $62 billion complaining about inequality? Why is the world’s 6th richest man lecturing the public on the wealth gap, and floating ideas like the government spreading OUR wealth around while hoarding his own?
In 2015, Mark Zuckerberg claimed he would give his entire fortune away to charity in his lifetime, and promptly formed an LLC for that purpose… as opposed to, you know, a charity. This means that instead of using his own money to help people, he can spend that money on lobbying politicians in Washington to use YOUR money to help people.
See how generous these rich philanthropists are with everyone else’s money?
No, I guess true charity is the responsibility of the rest of us.
Mark Zuckerberg could give away hundreds of thousands of free expensive college educations without his net worth dropping 2%. He could provide a $12,000 grant to 1.7 million people if he actually cares about giving them a chance to “try new ideas”, and still have $42 billion left for a rainy day.
If he is so concerned about people having a cushion to fall back on, why not start a charity that gives free room and board to anyone who wants to come and explore their options for meaningful employment, like an internship?
That’s what I would do, literally open the doors to anyone who feels that they have no other options, provide them that safety net, and train them in the meantime based on their desires and pursuits. He could do this. He could empower people with his wealth.
But he doesn’t.
Instead, Zuckerberg appeals to a victim mentality:
Today, we have a level of wealth inequality that hurts everyone…
When you don’t have the freedom to take your idea and turn it into a historic enterprize we all lose and today our society is way over indexed on rewarding people when they are successful and we don’t do nearly enough to make sure people can take lots of different shots.
Facebook profits $4 billion per year. Why doesn’t Facebook hand out 200,000 $20,000 grants per year to promising young entrepreneurs who could then solely focus on their business venture, giving them the same opportunity Zuckerberg had to create (or steal) Facebook?
Facebook knows its users well–too well you might say. Facebook knows its users so well in fact that the company could provide a free quality online education to every one of its users based on their interests, skills, and desires.
But Mark Zuckerberg has other motives.
I have empathy for the poor, for those who truly don’t have an opportunity, and I would sleep easier seeing everyone with a more robust safety net. But what I can’t stand is being lectured by somebody who actually could do something about it, acting helpless without government intervention.
Ignore Zuckerberg. Take a Page from 50 Cent
You know who didn’t have a safety net? 50 Cent. I recently read The 50th Law of Power by Robert Green, who details how 50 Cent, orphaned at the age of eight, built himself from literally nothing.
Do you think a basic income would have been conducive to his drive when it was the very fact that he had to make it that forced him to be successful? That would have allowed 50 Cent to settle, to fall back on the cushion instead of pushing through to realize his dreams and build a business empire.
Most people are so placated and dumbed down by TV and the media that they would find endless distractions to keep them from doing something meaningful. The ones who have drive find a way, despite their circumstances.
As Robert Green points out, the masses are far from the helpless peasants of the past. Today, we need only reach out and grab our freedom, our equality, and our wealth. Zuckerberg’s view of America is one based on fear.
In fact, the reality of 21st century America is something more like the following:
Our physical environment is safer and more secure than any other moment in our history….
In the Past, only white males could play the power game. Now, millions upon millions of minorities and women have been given entrance to the arena forever altering the dynamic…
Advances in technology have opened up all kinds of new opportunities. Old business models are dissolving leaving the field wide open for innovation. It is a time of sweeping change and revolution.
We face certain challenges as well. The world has become more competitive. The economy has undeniable vulnerabilities and is in need of reinvention. As in all situations, the determining factor will be our attitudes, how we choose to look at this reality.
If we give into the fear, we will give disproportionate attention to the negative and manufacture the very adverse circumstances that we dread.
If we go the opposite direction, attacking everything with boldness and energy then we will create a much different dynamic.
The government is a fear machine. The government welfare, their “help,” always keeps people in poverty instead of raising them out of it. The war on drugs, the great society, the public housing ghettos: these are the reasons people like 50 Cent were born into poverty. Only a fool would trust the government to solve these problems that they created.
Mark Zuckerberg’s ideas represent the old style method of control. A universal basic income would only preserve the old power structure by keeping the masses from participating in this revolution of technology and innovation.
Zuckerberg represents this generation’s white liberal elite identified by Malcolm X who want to keep the poor dependent and helpless. Every government program, bill, and regulation that they support is sold as a help to the poor masses when in reality those championing the government control build their power on the backs of those they claim to help.
What Zuckerberg champions will not free the masses, it will exploit them for political gain. It will make them satiated pawns to do the bidding of the elite, while Zuckerberg consolidates his control over the future.
Zuckerberg’s Zombie Nation
You know what most of those people would do with their universal basic income? They would sit on Facebook all day and be advertised to by Zuckerberg, and buy the things that Zuckerberg sells them which neither free them nor cushion them.
So who would end up collecting that basic income? Who would benefit from more tax dollars being stolen from working Americans who create wealth and produce goods and services which we need to live?
That money would be transferred to those who tell the people what they want to hear, who provide entertaining manipulations to the masses. Mark Zuckerberg would collect that cash because he is the one with the data, he knows how to wrest the dollars from the people.
He feigns his commitment to allowing people to have the type of success he has enjoyed by freeing them from all pressure, from all worry, doubt, and anxiety. He claims that his success with Facebook would not have been possible without the safety net that he enjoyed.
Well, then why not put his vast fortune where his mouth is?
He should be leading by example, and his failure to do so shows his true intentions.
Don’t fall for Zuckerberg’s tricks. The people have the power unless they fall for the old free lunch.