Saturday, March 5, 2011

Zuckerberg lives

I just watched "The Social Network".  (Why didn't they call it "Social Network"?  Cleaner.)

Mark Zuckerberg is still alive, despite being (portrayed as) a conscienceless user asshole.  No, I didn't believe the young associate putting a sweet Hollywood bow on him at the end.  Although it did look as though she might be trying to cheer up the poor little rich boy with a little white lie...

The apparent fact the Zuckerberg is such a creep and is still alive is actually good news.  Not for the business world, which is full of similar successful self-centered sociopaths, but for the political world.

Movies come out every year in which the entire government is run by venal conspiracies that would just as soon kill you as frame you for a crime you didn't commit.  "Enemy of the State" had both.  The Bourne abstraction movies have a shadow government immune from democratic control.  I'm sure I'll enjoy the matrix-y paranoia of "The Adjustment Bureau".

For me, the question has lately been, with trillions of dollars at stake and with humans' obvious willingness to kill over paltry amounts, is our government subject to even worse than the obvious perennial purchase by moneyed interests.  Goldman Sachs has run our economic policy, irrespective of the party in power, for decades.  They got to the top the old-fashioned way; they stole, uh, sorry, creamed off huge proceeds and bought power by contributing to both parties.

Yet if push came to shove and a less wishy-washy reformer than Barack Obama won the Presidency against all the elite cultural factors stacked against him (or her - but not Hillary, she's too DLC), how far would the interests of wealth go to retain their control?  Yeah, this sounds paranoid even to me, its thinker.  But...

Zuckerberg lives.  Maybe popular democracy remains possible, despite the current overwhelming dominance of the wealthy elite.

And I did really enjoy seeing Larry Summers portrayed as an arrogant, short-sighted, ignoramus asshole.  Too bad the filmmakers couldn't prevail upon him to play himself.

Harvard is everywhere in this movie, and it doesn't come off well.  But now Harvard has Drew Faust, and the federal government has Elizabeth Warren.  Maybe the problem all along has been Harvard men, and what we really need is Harvard women to save us.

(Shhh.  Don't tell the wealthy.  Let them get comfortable with Faust's and Warren's admission to the club.  Then bust up the club good and proper.)

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