“Re digital accountability: Big institutions -- private and public alike -- don't invest billions of dollars each year on advertising, PR and political influence just to be held more accountable. Big institutions and the privileged elite are less accountable than ever not in spite of digital technology, but precisely because of digital technology.” - Jeff Einstein
Each medium comes with inherent biases. The printing press, for instance, promotes linear thinking and reason. Electronic media promote distraction and emotion. Excerpted from my essay, The Rise of Fascism in a Brave New Digital World…
Despite the self-serving commercial myths of those who profit most from digital media, the true bias of digital technology is neither personal empowerment nor freedom. The true bias of digital technology is the efficient and accelerated consolidation of institutional power and wealth among those institutions — corporations and government agencies alike — already far too powerful and far too wealthy. The real bias of digital technology benefits most those massive corporations and government agencies that singly and together already manage and manipulate terabytes of data each and every day.
The result is more conspiracy by fiat than design. Big government agencies and their big corporate counterparts all emerge bigger, wealthier and more powerful as the primary bias of digital technology to consolidate additional power and wealth among those already too powerful and too wealthy asserts itself each and every time they sit down to negotiate with each other. Conspiracy by design is simply no longer necessary when conspiracy by fiat satisfies the same ends and — conveniently — offers plausible deniability to everyone and accountability to no one.
“Fascism should more appropriately be called Corporatism because it is a merger of state and corporate power.”
— Benito Mussolini
What we call government regulation these days is in fact corporatism at work, little more than a tool-driven marriage of convenience among incestuous alumni of the same Ivy League MBA programs. Witness the fact that the financial institutions deemed too big to fail back in 2008 are — for the most part — twice the size and only half as accountable today, not in spite but precisely because of government regulation. Contrary to what the ruling elite of the Brave New Digital World tell us time and again, too big to fail isn’t the unfortunate result of our failure to plan. Too big to fail is the plan.