There are three concepts we need to put address:
One: This is how the Encyclopedia Britannica defines Robber Baron:
Robber baron, pejorative term for one of the powerful 19th-century U.S. industrialists and financiers who made fortunes by monopolizing huge industries through the formation of trusts, engaging in unethical business practices, exploiting workers, and paying little heed to their customers or competition. Alternatively, those who credit the explosive growth of American capitalism during this period to the indefatigable pursuit of success and material wealth are likely to celebrate these entrepreneurial tycoons as “captains of industry.” Among the sectors in which they compiled their great wealth were the oil, steel, liquor, cotton, textile, and tobacco industries, railroads, and banks.
The concept of the Robber Baron in the American psyche is a man so greedy, so absolutely consumed by avarice, that he will do anything, regardless of how unethical or unscrupulous it might be, to make more money.
Two: What we have seen in America in just the last couple of years is something referred to as Woke Capitalism. We see this with Gillette trying to sell razors to men with a PSA about toxic masculinity. We see this with the NFL letting players kneel during the anthem and criticize America. We see this with the NBA pulling out of North Carolina over transgender bathroom policy.
It is the interjection of far Left-wing, social justice ideology into business.
Three: Moral licensing is a psychological phenomenon where people do something good then use that good to give themselves permission to do something bad. It is paying indulgence to your own conscience.
It’s why a climate activist can raise awareness at a protest then spend a week on a private yacht and not feel bad about it.
Let’s add all of these together now.
What have we seen from Woke Capitalism recently but constant haranguing of Middle Americans about white privilege, toxic masculinity, how racist this country is because of Trump, and a cornucopia of other complaints straight out of Berkeley Gender Studies faculty lounge.
You cannot watch a sports game without it turning into an anti-American lecture from either the commentators or the athletes when they have a microphone jammed in their face. Hollywood award ceremonies have been an orgy of Woke anti-Middle American sentiment for years.
CEOs, banks, and corporate America are trying to figure out how, and are being championed by the media for it, deny Americans their civil liberties at a faster and more autocratic pace than the Federal government.
Unfortunate, the axiom of “go woke, go broke” is very much alive an well.
So how is a modern-day robber baron supposed to be Woke and make unlimited shit-loads of money?
One word: China.
The ideological blind spot for the Left is the horrors of socialism. When you mention the 100 million killed in the 20th century in the name of attempting socialist utopias, they tell you “that wasn’t real socialism.” Or they come right out and say that some people deserved to die in pursuit of socialist equality.
China is a totalitarian socialist state. Don’t tell me that it’s not. Just like in the Soviet Union, there were rich people. They are all well connected and are allowed to be rich because they tow the party line. The average Chinese citizen outside of a handful of large urban areas mostly on the coasts live in poverty and unrelenting oppression.
The average Chinese citizen in these urban areas might have a slightly higher quality of life, but they still live under unrelenting oppression. China’s social credit system is a dystopian nightmare that even George Orwell couldn’t imagine.
China also has the largest consumer market of any nation on earth, with over one billion potential customers. All you have to do is suck up to the Chinese government.
This is the other half of Woke Capitalism.
If you haven’t heard about it yet, Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey made a comment about supporting the Hong Kong protesters. Unfortunately for Morey, there are more basketball fans in China than there are Americans so the NBA had to stomp on his neck and bend over backward to apologize to China and kowtow to the Chinese government.
NBA coaches and players are free to attack Trump all day long for whatever TDS grievance of the day they feel like, but they are mum on China.
They will yell “Trump is committing genocide on the border” but will kiss the ass of a government that slaughtered 45 million people within the lifetime of half the NBA owners.
This is going so far now that the NBA is throwing fans out of US games for displaying pro-Hong Kong signs. Americans in America are being censored to protect the feelings of the Chinese government so the NBA can get revenue from China.
The NBA is not the only one.
Blizzard Entertainment, the videogame publisher, just banned a gaming champion for life and fined him his prize money for pro-Hong Kong sentiments during his award speech. They did this because the gamer market in China is larger than the total population of the US and the Chinese government invests in video game companies.
Hollywood does this too, in spades.
It’s hard to think of a more American movie from the 80’s than Top Gun, where an American Naval Aviator gives a finger during an inverted dive to a Soviet fighter pilot.
Now, Hollywood had to censor one of the patches on Maverick’s jacket to appease the Chinese.
There’s a new Top Gun movie coming out. And Maverick is wearing the same leather jacket – only this time it’s Communist Party of China-approved, so the Japanese and Taiwanese flag patches are gone (screenshot on right is from the new trailer)… pic.twitter.com/gUxFNFNUKX
— Mark MacKinnon (@markmackinnon) July 19, 2019
Why, because there are more people who will see Top Gun 2 in China than there are total Americans.
Woke capitalism is made up of ideological radical Leftists who are happy to take all the money from a communist dictatorship like China and feel good about it because they are lecturing Middle America about how evil and privileged they are.
5 thoughts on “Moral licencing, Woke Capitalism, ChiComs, and the new Robber Barons”
It is hard for an American to even think about how much censorship and monitoring goes on in China.
I work in IT. I had to bring up a web site hosted “behind the great firewall of China”. You can get servers in China data centers just like you can here in America or Europe. What you can’t get, is a server which does not allow the hosting company access to the server. Amazon Web Services (AWS) explicitly states that they can’t login to your servers. Most cloud providers provide the same level of server protection. If you loose access to your server in AWS, you are in for a painful process to get back in. In China data centers, they just log into your server.
They provided me with the OS pre-loaded. I then had to reinstall every single piece of software over a VPN to a private VPN service. All of the “well known” VPN services are blocked. Why? Because there wasn’t a single piece of software on the system that was provided to me that could be trusted. So I had to live update a running server with new software from a trusted source.
I had to search the entire “blank” server to find any and all “extra” files and remove them.
Once that was done, I loaded the client’s software packages, got things up and running, and put up the test web page.
We were able to access that test web page for less than a day before it was blocked and we were notified that we didn’t have the governments permission to publish a web page.
Back to the VPN. We get the site up and tested. Except I’m playing a bi-weekly game of cat and mouse where I have to reconfigure the VPN in order to get through the Greate Firewall of China. The client then applies to the government for permission to publish the web site. We then have to add “tokens” to each and every page of the website telling the Chinese government that this is an approved page.
The site gets scanned weekly, with the government looking for “wrong think” content. If they were to discover wrong thing, the token on each page would be de-authorized and the site would go dark.
I am so grateful for living in America.
I’m happy to believe that civilized world cloud providers do not log into your servers as a matter of policy. I can’t see any reason to believe that it’s actually impossible for them to do so.
It is a mater of configuration and how data stores are configured. If your server requires 2FA over an encrypted link, then you can’t just “log in” to the server with a password.
The 2nd issue is to make data stores are encrypted. They become decrypted only during boot with the right authenticaters. If I can take your un-encrypted disk drive and mount it on my system, I can access anything I want on your disk drive. No authentication required.
If, on the other hand, your disk is encrypted, the fact that I have a copy or the original and mount it on my system doesn’t allow me the ability to read the contents.
It is a part of the security model some of my clients need. Pull the plug and there is no way of getting to the content (at rest) data. Plug the system back in and power it up, it needs authentication before the boot will succeed and the data become available.
Sooo…in the “approved” Top Gun 2 does Maverick shoot down a South Korean MIG?
There is an old saying, “a bigot’s mind is located just above their wallet.”
Nothing has changed.
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