"'Oh My God, This Is So F—-ed Up!': Inside Silicon Valley's Secretive, Orgiastic Dark Side" - that was the article published online by Vanity Fair for their upcoming February issue that nearly turned me into a socialist.
With more power and money than any of us can ever dream of, these Silicon Valley tech giants have been able to host their wildest and darkest drug-fueled sex fantasies by leveraging their power and leading women on. Of course, tech giants don’t see it like that. They see themselves as pioneers of the progressive sex culture — masking the power matrix at work and the ‘questionable’ legalities of mixing drugs and sex.
Reading this, I was immediately hit with the idea that money was the root of all evil. Was Karl Marx right? Democracy has become a front for the oligarchy of multinational corporations that are really pulling the strings, and they’re able to get away with whatever they want because of the unequal distribution of power. Maybe money was the root of all evil, and if we redistributed their power, wouldn’t that balance the playing field?
I reminded myself that concentrating their power on a totalitarian government would subject us to the same abuses of tyranny that the Chinese people are fighting against today. In a libertarian society as we envision, there will always be a gradient of income inequality, but at least divided and defused power can help us combat corruption.
Still, for a brief moment, I commiserated with the cause of social justice warriors. Anyone with a heart can’t look at what’s going on in Silicon Valley and think it’s OK. This is the reason why the right is seen as a bunch of greedy, rich, and prejudiced people who don’t care about how historical discrimination has systemically kept minorities at the bottom of the income barrel.
In fact, I’ve seen more commentators trying to disprove this instead of actually addressing these problems with free market solutions. Education will always be the way out of poverty, and robust public schools are the only way to do it. Sure, you can hold me to a libertarian purity test and discredit my argument, but as Adam Smith said: “No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater part of the members are poor and miserable.”
Perhaps one day the rich will fund a private school for the poor, but until that day comes, we need to address the greater encroachment of our liberties with practical solutions for today.
Nothing has been a greater ally to social justice warriors than the free press, allowing them to expose these kinds of abuses. Moreover, social media has become an incredibly effective tool for community organizers.
Remember the boycott of Abercrombie and Fitch when they refused to “make clothes for fat people?” That is the power of the free market at work. Yet, instead of highlighting these movements as a win for the free market, the right has called these people “snowflakes” for allying with these friends against crude companies.
One can trace back nearly every problem the liberty movement has to people like Steve Bannon and Milo Yiannopoulos as well as the alt-right and the tsunami of Internet trolls. In many cases, right-leaning student groups have become safe spaces for well-meaning, yet horribly misled students who think rudely and arrogantly asserting their moral superiority on campus will win their peers to our side. They are wrong.
While left-leaning millennials may not be going to church, that doesn’t mean they don’t care about each other. Humans are social beings, and if we ever hope to break down tribalism, that means not turning a blind eye to mistreatment and prejudice.
During the civil rights era, any person who stood up for mistreatment was considered a hero and brought us that much closer to integrating the races. In the film "42," a hotel that refused to let Jackie Robinson sleep there was boycotted by the entire team. That is the kind of heroism we need — reminding our youth about the power of the free market, instead of telling them to “toughen up.” No one should have to face that kind of egregious prejudice, and anyone calling a compassionate person a “snowflake” is part of the problem.
Older generations think calling millennials “snowflakes” will help toughen them up to deal with the real world. However, I’d rather expose injustice than develop callousness towards it.
It’s time to face facts: yelling “TAXATION IS THEFT!!” isn’t growing our movement or helping our cause. Every time someone makes the argument that socialism is legalized slavery, middle-of-the-road individuals who could be won over to the cause think the right is absolutely insane. While it may be philosophically true, not one apolitical person cares. They are willing to sacrifice their ability to make more money than the next guy, so that no one will have to suffer from the injustices and power abuses that unscrupulous businessmen perpetuate, just like what’s going on in Silicon Valley.
Some of you will read this and think “Well, I’ve already trashed my reputation on campus for my cause, so why bother?”
Because every time you make fun of someone for not agreeing with you, that makes you a bully. If you truly believe in your conservative principles, win them over with fact and friendship — not letting yourself become the monster they make us out to be.
To quote the venerable former President Abraham Lincoln, "Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?"
This is the type of mantra we, conservatives and libertarians, should live by.
William Nardi is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Rouser.