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Cyber scam
>> Cyberselfish
lambasts the wired world


 “OOH, BABY, IT’S A WIRED WORLD,” coos the current cover of Premiere, the “Cyber Issue” with Sarah Michelle Gellar four-on-the-floor spilling out of a silver camisole.  Cyber culture is the Tits & Ass, the jiggle, of the new economy.  Pimps on Parade for “Progress.”  THINK DIFFERENT: “Change Is Good.” (BTW, buy the new upgrade.)  Round&rounditgoes, where it stops no one knows – but don’t stop the music!

 Paulina Borsook – who wrote for Wired before cyber dreams disintegrated into silicon  & mirrors BigBiz – isn’t buying.  Cyberselfish is a rumble – facts, analysis, options, passion – refuting rampant know-nothing cyberdrool.

 Cyber libertarians, she observes, betray short memories (and the attention-spans-of-gnats they breed): “Government was the source of the goodies that created the critical mass” that spawned their richesee.  That was then, this is NOW?  Borsook’s not biting: “Quiz: Where would you want to do business in 2000?  In Russia, where there’s no regulation, no central government, no rule of law…?” (Ideal for Napster!)

 Yet, when the Netheads squawk about unskilled workers, they can’t see that anti-government mania led to the cutbacks that dumped California’s top-ranked public school system of the 70’s among the worst (yeah, Mississippi’s).

 It’s all about BIONOMICS: Economy as Ecosystem, stupid.  (The original subtitle of Michael Rothschild’s seminal 1991 book was The Inevitability of Capitalism.)  The message: don’t mess with unfettered rainforests/markets.  Borsook: “What about the fact that actual rainforests are now being destroyed because of the free market?”

 CYBERGURUS reallytruly want you to be connected.  To whom?  The Boss & Big Brother and, most important, THEM.  Only they let you do things faster but, guess what. You’re working longer hours for stagnant wages! (Will wonders ever cease!)  Still, behold the perks: PORN, GAMES, and CHAT (without seeing a sould).  Isn’t that AMAZING!!! So when cyberhonchos receive surveys on What All This Means, half of them – this is WAY COOL – don’t bother answering!!!

 They can save the world better, so you’d think they – at lease the 64 new millionaires Silicon Valley generates daily 00 might dabble in philanthropy.  But n-o-o-o!  They’re not sure their chump change would be “wisely” spent.  Yeah, right: like the way we line their pocketbooks by buying this year’s model for something we don’t need other than to keep up with it.  Duck, you sucker!  Make way for The Perfect Scam.

 TECHNOGEEKS are SEXY and don’t you forget it.  The arty kids in high school “had no use for the nerds.  And now 10 or 20 years later, they are coming back and asking for money?  No way!”  Besides: “Art is precisely the human creation that lasts and lasts – a state of affairs totally at odds with technologies joy of obsolescence… Who needs art anyway?”

 The human factor?  TECHNOLUMPEN work in what are “sardonically called veal-fattening pens: places where the young are kept immobilized indoors to be sacrificed for greater economic productivity.  And ooh, they have such tender white flesh because they don’t get out at all!”

 Thus TECHNOCOOLIES are immigrants with “scoring-top-of-the-class desperation that would make them so happy to be here, and so unquestioning of whatever high tech companies are shoveling, that they are ideally docile workers.”  Because they witnessed government brutality and corruption firsthand they fit in with Silicon Valley libertarianism: “They know for a fact how yucky government can be.”

 The portals of cyberpower are BOYS-ONLY playpens, despite the fact that more women actually operate computers.  The rationale is a doozie: women are nurturers and just don’t have the psyche to make those all-important split-second cyber decisions.  Then there’s ageism: if you haven’t risen up the ranks by 40, well, maybe you were born to play oldies-rock lounges.

 Borsook knows this stuff from the inside, and that’s why Cyberselfish is such a compelling screed: the perils of Paulina are our own.


paulina b.

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Cyberselfish 2015
Looking Back

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