Commenter Irish Paleo offers a summary of lessons from the Google Fiasco:
The number of “irony overload” moments I’ve had with this Google memo story is unreal:
1. Man writes memo in which he complains, inter alia, that his employer is hostile to dissenting points of view. Employer plays straight into the stereotype by firing him for expressing a dissenting point of view.
2. Man writes memo in which he suggests that women are more emotional than men. Feminists and prominent tech industry women have public emotional meltdown and employer fires man for hurting their delicate feelings, thereby playing (you guessed it) straight into the stereotype.
3. Man writes memo defending his employer’s hiring policies against accusations of discrimination. Employer responds by firing him, thereby implicitly validating accusations to the effect that its hiring policies are discriminatory.
4. A company with a US$650 billion market cap and a CEO who took home US$200 million last year fires an employee for expressing his opinions on an internal forum curated by the company itself in probable violation of California labour laws designed to protect, inter alia, union organising and nobody on the political left can stop gloating and come to the defence of the fired worker.
5. A company which has made literally hundreds of billions monetising the skills of highly intelligent Aspergerish males is shocked (Shocked, I tell ya!!!!) that some of them might:
(a) not unquestioningly believe that millions of years of evolution and the vastly different selection pressures to which different populations and sub-groups of populations have been subject over those millions of years cannot possibly, conceivably have anything to with the demographic profile of industries and professions; and
(b) might not have the social cop-on to keep that lack of credulity to themselves.
6. A company whose executives are supposedly so prejudiced and bigoted that they turn away obvious talent based on biological factors that have nothing whatsoever to do with the bottom line somehow ended up being worth US$650 billion and having close to monopolistic power in the provision of internet search facilities and nobody in the mainstream commentariat can bring themselves to notice the complete incongruity and irreconcilability of the two foregoing propositions.
Here, in my view, are the take-outs from the l’affaire Damore:
1. When an industry (e.g. manufacturing) is sucked into the bureaucratic vortex created by parasitic social justice jihadis and gradually accretes layer-after-layer of inert bureaucracy dedicated to the manufacture and management of grievance, it becomes less profitable and throws off progressively fewer surplus resources for rent seekers to feed off and the social justice jihadis start to lose interest in it.
2. Conversely, when an industry (e.g. ICT) manages to stay out of the vortex’s gravitational pull, it becomes much more profitable and, in so doing, generates vast billions’ worth of surplus cash which attracts social justice jihadis in their droves just as refuse attracts rats.
In the long term, therefore, both honest commerce and the social justice jihad are doomed. If an industry manages to avoid the parasites for long enough, it becomes too big and juicy for the parasites to ignore. However, once the parasites engorge themselves, they’ll make that industry as inert and uninteresting as those they have already infested.
3. Sailer theorises (and he’s almost certainly correct to a point) that Google is being plagued by a phenomenon that it thought would never afflict it. However, I fear that this may be somewhat over-optimistic. It cannot have escaped the attention of Google, now that it has gone from plucky upstart to a massive scale gigantised incumbent, that there are two ways to make money in a business environment increasingly defined by administrative state harassment.
(a) The first is to escape the attention of the administrative state and the social justice jihadis and to operate in one of the few remaining corners of the economy where the free market’s writ still runs.
(b) The second is that, like the financial services sector, you effectively convert yourself into a de facto emanation of the administrative state and make money through influencing public policy rather than creating wealth. IT is an “adapt or die” industry. It has perhaps occurred to people like Google CEO Sundar Pichai that if Google can lead the IT industry into a massively bureaucratised business model with layers of HR administrators, sensitivity coaches, VPs for diversity and community relations and “equality” tsars, it can, by voluntarily loading its body up with parasites, require all industry players to do the same – including small start-up players whose competitive threat to Google can be eliminated by virtue of social justice jihadis crushing them with their increasingly ridiculous financial demands.
4. For decades, companies like Google were able to avoid the wrath of social justice jihadis because, as new players which had no institutional history within the supposedly dark ages of 1900 to 1980, they could claim to be “new” and thus entirely “meritocratic”. The problem is that, being run by people who were ruthlessly greedy for money and brought up in the culturally Marxist environs of the western metropolitan areas of the late 20th century, their claims to be entirely meritocratic in their hiring policies have largely turned out to be correct – which is the problem. Social justice jihadis have been utterly humiliated by the fact the most politically correct industry there is, which did everything it possibly could and more to fight “privilege” and “bias” ended up being one of the least “diverse” (as the jihadis define the term), hence their feral obsession with destroying it.
5. I can’t say I feel too sorry for Mr. Damore. I read his memo and it’s full of PC tropes about “valuing” the richness of “diversity” and it is, in fact, a manifesto for precisely the sort of bland centrism that has banished precisely the rational thought whose absence Mr. Damore rightly feels impoverishes modern policy discourse. In any event, I presume that (a) Peter Thiel will give him a job; and (b) it’ll pay rather better than the one he lost at Google. In any event, good luck to him but I shed no tears.
6. Speaking of the aforementioned Mr. Thiel, he does point to an alternative future for the IT industry, namely to get into bed with Mr. Crony Capitalism himself, namely Donald Trump. If they can hold their collective nose and do business with the Donald, he might return the favour by releasing his wrath onto the jihadis by, for instance, eliminating funding for universities which teach and promote bogus concepts like “privilege” and “microaggressions”. Of course, that might require them to do something about their addiction to cheap immigrant labour imported by virtue of H-1B Visas, but hey, there’s a price for everything in life.