As a former hedge fund analyst who spent years identifying promising investment opportunities, I don't understand what is deemed "news" by the tech media out here in Silicon Valley. On Wall Street, return on capital is viewed as a critical metric, but tech reporters are more impressed by the size of a capital raise, not what is actually done with the money or whether it will be used to develop a technology that will have a life changing impact.
I was deeply saddened by the news that Tom Perkins died last week. Though I never had the opportunity to meet him, I greatly admired his business acumen and appreciated his overall positive impact on Silicon Valley, where I have lived virtually my entire life.
"You pay a million dollars in taxes, you get a million votes," businessman Tom Perkins proposed.
The majority of Americans want the minimum wage raised, unemployment insurance extended, Social Security protected, and infrastructure like highways improved, but that's not what Congress is doing. Instead, it is slashing the budget in ways that the majority hates, including cutting food stamps and preserving tax breaks for corporations.
The argument goes that instead of being jealous, we all should be working in harmony together to create jobs and opportunity. Problem is, the deeply rich talk about building the economy but do almost nothing about it.
The powerful, super-wealthy people at the top of the economic food chain have noticed all this populist stirring. Boy, have they noticed. In spite of all their power and wealth, they are offended that anyone is suggesting that the system should be tinkered with. They're speaking out -- in truly silly ways -- and putting their money where their mouths are.
Millions are only one or two paychecks away from ruin. Poverty rates have soared. In the midst of misery, more and more of the nation's wealth is being captured by the top 0.1 percent of earners. And yet, some of the most powerful and wealthy people in America are feeling persecuted.
In the last few months, we've seen something truly amazing happen. The 1 percent is in "they fight you" mode, in some of the crudest terms possible. They are attacking the movement for equity in the country, and -- at least rhetorically, for now -- they want to burn it.
Ken Langone, a GOP megadonor and the co-founder of Home Depot, made a questionable Adolf Hitler comparison while looking