Posts from decency

The Warren Breakup Plan

Elizabeth Warren made news this weekend with her plan to breakup Google, Amazon, and Facebook (and also Apple).

Let me first say that I am sympathetic to Warren’s position. I particularly don’t like the way that Google, Apple, and Amazon use their market power in search and in their app stores to display their own products. The mobile app stores, in particular, have always seemed to me to be a constraint on innovation vs a contributor to it.

However, as you might imagine, I don’t love her proposal. I don’t think breaking up companies solves anything. And lots of rules on paper don’t either.

What we need is a competitive marketplace where new entrants have a chance to beat out old incumbents.

And I think we are on the cusp of that with crypto and the innovations in and around it.

This tweet exchange explains my high level view here:

I also quite like Mike Masnick’s much longer take on Warren’s plan.

What we need are policies that make it easier for startups to raise capital (like supporting ICOs instead of clamping down on them) and policies that open up the proprietary data assets of the big incumbents (like giving users control of their own data assets). Those sorts of things along with the never ending march of technology will do the trick I think.


If You Lie Down With Dogs, You Come Up With Fleas

I don’t know enough to say with any confidence that our President is a supremacist.

But he made a cold hard political calculation that paid off for him when he made these horrible people the foundation of his political base and fired them and their hatred up at his campaign rallies.

He can’t throw them under the bus now, even if he wanted to.

This poses immense problems for him, his ability to govern, his administration, and the people who accepted roles in it.

Supremacists are not fine people, they are repugnant and hateful, and they should be shunned by our society.

Instead, for political reasons, if not for other reasons, we have our President asserting their morality.

That isn’t going to work for our President as I am confident America won’t tolerate this.

This is likely to tear apart the coalition that elected him and make it easier for his opponents to fight him at every turn.

And that is a good thing.

The only good thing to come from this horrible moment that we are going through in America.