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Saturday, March 19, 2011

Disaster and Distaste

by CLINTON FEIN

Idealism is cute. Really. Eager entrepreneurs pitch their start-ups, caught up in the intoxicating thrill of possibly being the next multi-billion dollar visionary. A “don’t be evil”-like philosophy framing a social application (before marketing strategists condescendingly suggest a brand refresh) that will revolutionize the planet. Like seriously. A Western, Silicon Valley inspired narrative bathes these idealists in the warm glow of technocratic achievement, shimmering self satisfyingly in the reflection of a Zhi Tea-infused sweet tea vodka.

The now indelible associations – Mumbai/Twitter, Egypt/Facebook -- perpetuated by cunning PR flaks and extremely important, Klout-affirmed bloggers on iPad 2s – are overshadowed by the cataclysmic technological failures of Fukushima Daiichi and escalating violence in Libya, Bahrain and Yemen. The press release professed power of Twitter and Facebook and social graphs and mobile apps snuffed out by a dictatorial flick of an electrical switch, our twenty-first century, WikiLeaked, 2.0 reality irremediably shattered with 9.0 tsunamic force by the reliable stench of death, despair, depleted uranium and oblivion.

 
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