How can one not feel delighted that one of tech's other fine sages and authoritarians, Travis Kalanick, may be another $9 billion richer?
No, he's not quite a Zuckerberg. Financially, that is.
Yet the two have so much the same fine young entrepreneurial spirit that I can't help but see their similarities.
One painted a picture of a world that would be so open and connected that you could make friends with strangers in St. Petersburg. The one in Florida, or even the one in Russia.
The other offered rhapsodies about a world where cars would be shared among many, the roads would be miraculously decongested, and drivers would discover fine, new jobs that freed them from penury and pain.
You see, that's the way to make billions. Paint the world as a better, warmer, lovelier place.
Then go about ruthlessly exerting control over everything you can and treat everyone in your path as just so very, oh, backward. Or non-existent.
The headlines make for rapturous reading.
Sample:"Uber faces criminal investigation over Greyball spying program."
These merely echo such joys as: "Facebook is breaking law in how it collects your personal data, court rules."
Or how about: "Facebook could face $1.63 billion fine under GDPR over latest data breach."
I can't help thinking that the rules for entrepreneurial success in the tech world consisted -- and perhaps still consist -- of routinely breaking regulations, laws, and anything else that smacks of maintaining vague social order and justice and replacing it with whatever will make your company bigger and richer right now.
I wonder if anyone ever whispered such things as they were training the great young things at America's finest business schools.
I can't help thinking that these companies are a classic and painful example of how the few can make untold, uncontrolled piles, while everyone else has to deal with the consequences.
Where one company is now implicated in allegedly being the repository of disgraceful election manipulation and being the prime driver in flouting personal privacy, the other peddled a new vision of misogyny, cheap labor, and complete disregard for municipalities worldwide.