When left and right finally agree on something, watch out: The unthinkable becomes normal.
So it is with changing attitudes toward
For the last two decades, Apple, Google, Amazon and other
Conservative administrations praised them as modern versions of 19th-century risk-takers such as
At a time when American companies were increasingly unable to compete in the rough-and-tumble world arena, Apple,
The left was even more enthralled. It dropped its customary regulatory zeal, despite
Companies such as Facebook and Google were able to warp their own social media protocols and Internet searches to insidiously favor progressive agendas and messaging.
If the left feared that the tech billionaires were becoming robber barons, they also delighted in the fact that they were at least left-wing robber barons.
Unlike the steel, oil and coal monopolies of the 19th century that out of grime and smoke created the sinews of a growing America,
As a result, social media, internet searches, texts, email and other computer communications were exempt from interstate regulatory oversight. Big Tech certainly was not subject to the rules that governed railroads, power companies, trucking industries,
But attitudes about hip high-tech corporations have now changed on both the left and right.
Liberals are under pressure from their progressive base to make
Progressives wonder why
Local community groups resent the tech giants driving up housing prices and zoning out the poor from cities such as
Behind the veneer of a cool Apple logo or multicolored Google trademark are scores of multimillionaires who live one-percenter lifestyles quite at odds with the soft socialism espoused by their corporate megaphones.
Conservatives got sick of
Instead of acting like laissez-faire capitalists, the entrenched captains of high-tech industry seem more like government colluders and manipulators. Regarding the high-tech leaders' efforts to rig their industries and strangle dissent, think of conniving
With the election of populist
The public so far has welcomed the unregulated freedom of
The public faces put on by
For years, high-tech grandees dressed all in hip black while prancing around the stage, enthralling stockholders as if they were rock stars performing with wireless mics. Some wore jeans, sneakers and T-shirts, making it seem like being worth $50 billion was hipster cool.
But the billionaire-as-everyman shtick has lost his groove, especially when such zillionaires lavish their pet political candidates with huge donations, seed lobbying groups and demand regulatory loopholes.
Ten years ago, a carefree
Both liberals and conservatives are just beginning to ask why internet communications cannot be subject to the same rules applied to radio and television.
Why are high-tech profits hidden in offshore accounts?
Why is production outsourced to impoverished countries, sometimes in workplaces that are deplorable and cruel?
Why does texting while driving not earn a product liability suit?