Tag Archives: Silicon Valley

Why The U.S. Remains The World’s Unchallenged Superpower

By Jonathan Adelman – The United States is the world leader and likely to remain there for decades. It has the greatest soft power in the world by far. The United States still receives far more immigrants each year (1 million) than any other country in the world. The United States leads the world in high technology (Silicon Valley), finance and business (Wall Street), the movies (Hollywood) and higher education (17 of the top 20 universities in the world in Shanghai’s Jaotong University survey). The United States has a First World trade profile (massive exports of consumer and technology goods and imports of natural resources).

Right now, there is no one on the horizon that will overtake or even seriously challenge the United States, however ailing, for at least the next decade or two. more> http://tinyurl.com/lnlzv3v

NSA surveillance creeps onto tech’s lobbying agenda

(POLITICO.com)By Tony Romm – The companies’ aim with the new D.C. effort isn’t entirely clear. Silicon Valley to date hasn’t pushed to restrict the NSA’s ability to reach into the Internet’s backbone for foreign suspects’ communications. Instead, the tech companies mostly have made the case for more transparency — the need for better numbers and clearer documents that show how often the government seeks data from them and when.

But continued revelations about U.S. surveillance have raised the potential for new regulation of Internet companies in Europe and beyond. That’s causing headaches for tech companies that store and swap data overseas. Any changes to U.S. surveillance law consequently could have broad impact on business, and Silicon Valley is closely monitoring the congressional action. more> http://tinyurl.com/kwn6vkx


The Government Shutdown Has Revealed Silicon Valley’s Dysfunction Fetish

By Kevin Roose – “If the government shuts down, nothing happens and we all move on, because it just doesn’t matter. Stasis in the government is actually good for all of us.”

The bigger takeaway from Palihapitiya’s rant is that a certain strain of influential Silicon Valley thought has moved past passive political apathy and into a kind of anarchist cheerleading. Dysfunction and shutdowns are good, this line of thinking goes, because it hamstrings Washington’s ability to mess with the private sector‘s profit-making schemes.

And as long as the Bay Area is still churning out successful start-ups, what does it matter if hundreds of thousands of government workers are furloughed, essential services are cut off for low-income Americans, and the threat of a sovereign default endangers the entire economy? more> http://tinyurl.com/pe5run8

Freedom of Information

By Ken Auletta – With eighty-four million monthly visitors, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, the Guardian Web site is now the third most popular English-language newspaper Web site in the world, behind London’s Daily Mail, with its celebrity gossip and abundant cleavage, and the New York Times.

In 1994, a year before he became editor, Alan Rusbridger visited Silicon Valley. “I came back and wrote a memo to Peter (Preston) saying the Internet was the future,” Rusbridger recalls. “I told Peter this would change everything and we had to explore it.” more> http://tinyurl.com/q8c5dm2


The NSA Wants America’s Most Powerful Corporations to Be Dependent On It

By Conor Friedersdorf – The federal government, Wall Street, Silicon Valley — all are centers of power. In fact, entities within each sphere are powerful enough, on their own, to warrant constant vigilance. The NSA has constant access to troves of private communications. So does Google.

What ultimately restrains powerful entities is their separateness.

The diffuseness of power in America has long been a strength. But we’re rapidly undermining it. I don’t just mean that we’re increasingly federalizing everything, and concentrating power in the executive branch, though we’ve done both of those things. What I mean is that, during the last two presidencies, a series of events, including the 9/11 attacks and the global financial crisis, have led to increasingly, uncomfortably close ties between Big Finance, Big Telecom, Silicon Valley and Washington, D.C. more> http://tinyurl.com/mjx5rat