Eric Emerson Schmidt is the former chief executive officer of Google (2001-2011) and of Google’s parent, Alphabet (2001-2017). He oversaw the growth of Google from $20 million and no earnings in 2001 to a market-value of $202 billion in 2011, then the fifth-largest among Corporations based in the U.S. Google/Alphabet is now among the five Corporations grouped as the biggest of ‘Big Tech’ and known by the awkward acronym of ‘FAAMG’—Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, Google. Sometimes Netflix is added or substituted among this quintet to form the sightly FAANG. Each of the five has a Stock Market value near $1 trillion. Together these five ‘Big Tech’ Corporations’ value in our speculative U.S. economy, $4.36 trillion, is very close to the United States’ 2019 Federal Budget of $4.41 trillion. The five of FAAMG’s Stock Market value far exceeds the U.S. Government’s anticipated revenue of $3.422 trillion for 2019, a Deficit of $985 billion.
(Yes, the Trump administration’s annual Deficits now approach the $1.25 trillion per year racked up by the Obama Administration in its Bailout of the biggest of Big Banks between 2009-2012—$5.090 trillion—Deficits from which the United States is likely to never recover sovereignty.)
Eric Emerson Schmidt, now age 64, is significant for a great deal more than his accomplishments as a leading executive of Sun Microsystems, Novell, and of Google/Alphabet. He’s a member of bodies that have effectively decided the United States’ domestic and international policies over four or more decades—the Council on Foreign Relations and the Trilateral Commission. He contributes to Princeton University’s Institute for Advanced Study, sits on the Board of Oxford University’s Blavatnik School of Government, and sits on the Board of California’s Berggruen Institute (the latter Institute partnered itself with the Washington Post and the University of California Press. He’s attended every annual meeting of the Bilderberg Group since 2007 save 2009’s.
Eric Schmidt travels the world to extend and monitor the reach of digital technology. He and Jared Cohen—the Rhodes Scholar whom Schmidt made head of Google Ideas when Cohen was 29 in 2010—have written often about China for the CFR’s Foreign Policy. He’s met two Presidents of Cuba to increase that nation’s Internet ‘connectivity.’
In January 2013, he and Cohen and former New Mexico Governor and U.S. Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson visited North Korea; in October of that year North Korea introduced its indigenous Arirang ‘smart-phone’ and that phone’s use of Google’s Android operating-system. In 2016, Schmidt joined the Department of Defense’s ‘Innovation Advisory Board’ as its chair. He stated that any conflicts of interest regarding Alphabet/Google’s business with the Department of Defense would be precluded. “There’s a rule,” Schmidt said, regarding such business. “I’m not allowed to be briefed.”
Schmidt’s positions and networks of power are worrisome in themselves. The attitudes that he’s professed, regarding the powers that accompany his positions and networks, make him deeply dangerous to democracy and to humans’ independent progress.
In November 2017, Eric Schmidt spoke at the International Security Forum in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He talked about a perceived ‘problem’ for social-media platforms such as Google and YouTube (YouTube, you’ll likely know, is owned by Google) and Facebook and Instagram (Instagram, you’ll likely know, is owned by Facebook). He then talked about a ready remedy that he saw.
Schmidt said to his interviewer at the International Security Forum, “That is a core problem of humans that they tend to learn from each other and their friends are like them. And so until we decide collectively that occasionally somebody not like you should be inserted into your database, which is sort of a social values thing, I think we are going to have this problem.”
Quite a ‘problem’! Quite a ‘core problem of humans’ for Eric Schmidt! The problem is, he said, ‘that they tend to learn from each other and their friends.’
That is, we humans still talk to each other. Also, we exchange observations online. There, still, on the Internet, we communicate without mediation. Thus, an understanding may ‘go viral’ among us. In the space of a day, week, or month, tens of millions may learn from each other about, say, the trillions-dollar Bailout of Banks—or the actual loss of earnings and buying-power for the middle-class and working-class in the United States since 1972—or the losses to cognition and memory that adults and especially children have suffered from cell-phones since the late 1990s.
Naturally someone who rules from the top-down, someone such as Eric Schmidt, wants to prevent such exchange of potentially disruptive information. For corrective purposes, he wants, you may immediately understand, that ’somebody not like you … be inserted into your database.’
Good Eric—redoubtable Eric—electrical engineer, B.S. Princeton University 1976, M.S. University of California at Berkeley 1979—is by his positions qualified to be that ‘somebody not like you’—a secret commissar of the Information Autobahn.
In 2015, Eric Schmidt spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. He made headlines by predicting that the Internet would become so omnipresent and functional that its users would no longer see it as separate from themselves, would disappear. ABC News quoted Schmidt as ‘saying that the Internet will become so seamlessly integrated into our daily lives that it will simply fade into the background.’ “It will be part of your presence all the time,” Schmidt said, according to CNET. “Imagine you walk into a room, and the room is dynamic. And with your permission and all of that, you are interacting with the things going on in the room.”
You see, dear reader? Rooms To Go becomes Rooms “R” Us. Who and what would design “the content” of such “dynamic” rooms? You may be assured that choices will be limited. Choices will of course—for security and health and ecological friendliness—have to be approved … by ‘somebody not like you.’ Eric Schmidt may fly on private jets, but you and I, we, must be protected from emitting ‘greenhouse gases.’ Our Room with a View will become His View into our Room.
Eric has lately become a target of protest.
On September 1, 2019, Jack Poulson, age 33 and an assistant professor of Mathematics at Stanford from 2014 to 2016 and a Senior Research Scientist at Google from May 2016 till his resignation in September 2018, wrote a letter to the co-directors of Stanford’s Institute for Human-Center Artificial Intelligence, Professors Fei-Fei Li and John Etchemendy.
Jack Poulson’s letter protested Eric Schmidt’s participation as a keynote speaker for the Institute’s upcoming (October 28 and 29, 2019) Conference on ‘AI Ethics, Policy, and Governance.’
The letter in full is here. Highlights from it follow. It asks Professor Fei-Fei Li to note ‘serious and credible inquiries into Mr. Schmidt’s ethical conduct.’ It cites Schmidt’s ‘in the removal of lifelong DOD civil servant Roma Laster from the Defense Innovation Board as a result of her attempting to perform her assigned duty of avoiding problematic conflicts of interest. ProPublica and Fortune quote a DOD official with knowledge of the events as saying: “Roma was removed because she insisted on [Schmidt and Bezos] following the rules.” You, dear reader, likely know that the Bezos named is Jeff, CEO of the afore-mentioned Amazon of FAAMG and since 2013 owner of the Washington Post.
Jack Poulson’s letter notes instances of Schmidt’s seeming hypocrisy. It recalls Schmidt telling the BBC in May 2019 that Google ‘should proactively censor human rights information in China in order to profit from ad sales on its search engine.’ The profitable, censorship-enabling ‘project’ in question for Chinese media is named Dragonfly. Poulson recalls that ‘more than 700 Google employees signed a joint letter in protest of the project, and, soon after, it was revealed that Google’s privacy team had been shut out. Yet, to this day, the company refuses to state that profiting from the suppression of democracy and dissent violates any of its principles. And, Mr. Schmidt is the most vocal champion of this violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.’
The letter then notes two Google executives who have evidently benefited from Schmidt’s overlooking claims of ’sexual harassment’ or ‘abuse’ against them while he was executive chairman of Google—Andy Rubin (with ‘a $90M payout’) in 2014 and Alphabet’s ongoing chief legal officer, David Drummond, accused by ex-Google staffer Jennifer Blakely of abandoning her and their extra-marital daughter after Google forced Blakely to leave its legal department. (Both Drummond and Rubin have made much over $100 million in payments and options from Alphabet/Google over the past decade.)
Jack Poulson’s letter of September 1, 2019 concludes” ‘I believe that, given the above-mentioned points, it would be inappropriate for Stanford University, and the Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence, to elevate Mr. Schmidt as a keynote speaker at an ethics conference….’ More than 30 Google software engineers and program managers added their signatures.
Eric Schmidt is undeterred. He’s a Mr. Fix-It across nations’ borders. He and peers like Bilderbergers enact their secretive, racist, un-accomplishing unto destructive ‘solutions’ His technocratic arrogance proceeds to new frontiers of anti-human nonsense.
On September 30, Schmidt spoke at yet another conference about the future, this one titled SynBioBeta, in San Francisco. CNBC served as his introducer. The article (with apologies for its grammar and vacuous lack of specifics) led off like a fanfare. It reads as follows:
“Brain inserts and carbon-absorbing bacteria aren’t just the fantasies of Silicon Valley’s richest executives, they’re also a part of a larger hope to advance artificial intelligence and computing efforts.
“Biology will undoubtedly fuel computing” in coming years, former Google CEO and current technical advisor Eric Schmidt said at a conference called SynBioBeta in San Francisco Monday. “Taking biology, which I’d always viewed as squishy and analog, and turning it into something that can be digitally manipulated, is an enormous accelerator.”
Schmidt’s comments come as Silicon Valley’s seeming obsession with biology attempts to move beyond fascinating projects and into more serious investments that could help modernize tech processes.’
Does turning “biology” into “something that can be digitally manipulated’ sound and seem like “an enormous accelerator” to you, dear reader? Yes, indeed, I think—“an enormous accelerator” into genetic engineering. Genetic engineering, or G.E., for this ‘tech process’ too has become an acronym, is the decades-long fancy of those few who would make human beings more reliably robotic and thus their more perfect tools.
Andy Rubin, the Google engineer and executive whose abuse of women Eric Schmidt is charged with ignoring, headed the Google robotics project named Replicant, ’spending an estimated $90 billion to buy eight robotics firms,’ according to the New York Times in October 2018. Rubin’s former wife, Rie, filed a civil suit in that month, one year, claiming that her husband ‘had multiple “ownership relationships” with other women during their marriage, paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to them,’ before Rie’s divorce the prior August. Her suit presents a screenshot of an email that Andy Rubin sent to one woman in 2015. “You will be happy being taken care of,” he wrote. “Being owned is kinda like you are my property, and I can loan you to other people.”
Stop this culture that treats human beings as slaves to be ‘loaned’ and as experiments needing correction and improvement through the top-down intercession of engineers and financiers who profit from our diminution. Stop Eric Schmidt. Stop ‘Big Tech.” Stop FAAMG. Stop these under-developed manipulators, these would-be Lords of the Net and the Web and your home, from running our lives.
Abandon all who and that would make you small.
Don Paul’s book, The World Is Turning: “’9/11’ “, the Movement for Justice, and Reclaiming America for the World, connects the crimes of September 11, 2001 with the ongoing theft-by-’bail-out’ of more than $9 trillion from the U.S. public. Don Paul names the same institutions and even families as guilty for both crimes and then points to sweeping remedies that can arise from the most local levels of global society.