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Friday reading – Google, Stanford, DC, liberals and gentrification

Two articles worth a read. First up How Google Works by Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg – review, a smart, pretty evenhanded overview of Schmidt’s management book. Although I’m sure Stanford will outlast Google, Poole identifies typically contradictory thinking from Schmidt and his mates. Google gets away with this bollocks because we refuse to see it in a normal economic and political context; it’s somehow different, magic even:

The authors do not notice the possible tension, for example, between their cheerleading vision of the tech industry “disrupting” higher education through what are called MOOCs (massively open online courses), on the one hand, and their admiring description of how Google’s founders preferred to organise their business not on normal corporate lines but more like academia (as at their alma mater, Stanford). It is precisely this academic culture that is under attack from the “disruptive” promise (or threat) of online universities.

Don’t be evil is different from do no evil.

Secondly, Liberalism and Gentrification from the ever astute, thought provoking Jacobin; a, how–we’re–all–complicit–and–liberal–mewling–is–exactly–that analysis of how up and coming ‘hoods in DC are all about class and money, or a modern version of what Marx called primitive accumulation. For DC read any inner London borough.