By David Talbot
Defund the Trump billionaires… Amid all the sound and fury about our mad leader and his Washington enablers, not nearly enough fury has been directed at the obscenely wealthy business moguls who finance Donald J. Trump. Today I’m fixated on three tech billionaires from the Bay Area — my home base — because as we suffocate in smoke and ash, these fuckers are among those underwriting the reelection of our chief climate denier. Let us know rage against this trio — Oracle founder and chairman Larry Ellison, Oracle CEO Safra Catz, and Palantir founder (and Facebook board member) Peter Thiel.
Ellison, a repulsive man I once dined with (he was trying to bed the attractive newspaper reporter who worked for me at the time), has raised millions of dollars for Trump’s reelection — most recently at an exclusive fundraiser at his second (or third or fifth?) home in Southern California. (Ellison also owns an entire island in Hawaii.) Catz served on Trump’s executive transition committee and has personally donated over $330,000 to his reelection campaign.
Trump even recruited Ellison to test one of his quack anti-Covid 19 drugs, even though Oracle has no pharmaceutical expertise.
In return for Oracle’s support, Trump has showered the company with government contracts — and Ellison and Catz are now confident that, with the administration’s blessing, Oracle has the inside track to buy the American arm of TikTok.
Peter Thiel, recently reported to have schmoozed with a major white nationalist on Trump’s behalf, is another corporate admirer of America’s worst president. And, like Oracle, his creepy surveillance company — Palantir — has benefited heavily from government contracts.
And, btw, don’t you just love government-bashing Silicon Valley libertarians who are always first in line to get big taxpayer handouts?
One tech industry observer recently remarked to the New York Times that companies like Oracle and Palantir are immune to consumer boycotts and public pressure because their software clients are businesses and government agencies.
But those businesses and government agencies are certainly prime targets for the public’s anti-Trump rage. One of the top priorities of the Biden administration (along with immediately implementing the Green New Deal) must be to cut off government funding to the Silicon Valley corporations whose top executives financed the Trump criminal enterprise. Men like Ellison and Thiel must be considered accomplices and co-conspirators.
American leaders — and too often Americans themselves — are a forgiving lot. But we can’t allow our officials to forget how our country has been turned into a smoldering wasteland, while Trump fat cats got even fatter.
Larry Ellison, Safra Catz, Peter Thiel… your day is coming to an end. We’re coming for your filthy lucre.