Google’s CEO

A question:

Given that the full text of the memo is public, that it is the subject of a national debate on an important subject, that many educated people disagree with one another about what claims it made, and that clarity can only help Google employees adhere to the company’s rules going forward, would you be willing to highlight the memo using green to indicate the “much” that you identified as “fair to debate” and red to flag the “portions” that you deemed Code-of-Conduct violations?

He can’t do that, because a) he doesn’t know himself and b) maintaining uncertainty is a key element of totalitarian thought control.

[Update a couple minutes later]

The Google Archipelago: A nice round up of links from Ed Driscoll.

[Updatea a while later]

This whole thing is so rife with irony. Google may regret being a California company:

Dan Eaton, an employment lawyer, in San Diego wrote on CNBC: “Federal labour law bars even non-union employers like Google from punishing an employee for communicating with fellow employees about improving working conditions … California law prohibits employers from threatening to fire employees to get them to adopt or refrain from adopting a particular political course of action.”

He also said” “It is unlawful for an employer to discipline an employee for challenging conduct that the employee reasonably believed to be discriminatory, even when a court later determines the conduct was not actually prohibited by the discrimination laws.”

Oh, what a tangled web we weave…

[Monday-morning update]

Cathy Young has an interview with Damore, in which he provides his influencers. I’m probably going to write up something on this myself at some point. There are so many issues to unpack.

[Update early afternoon]

Yes, Pichai should go, but that’s not enough:

When you use Facebook or Google (or Twitter, or Amazon, or Netflix) you’re sharing a lot of data with a company that you have to trust won’t abuse that. It’s much harder to trust a company that has decided to aggressively pursue thoughtcrime. And it doesn’t matter where you are on the political spectrum – Damore describes himself as a centrist. But it only takes one politically incorrect utterance, as so many in academia have learned, to achieve Enemy Of The People status. And then, apparently, you’re fair game.

Can you trust a self-driving car from Google, if some new company policy might reprogram it to avoid events Google doesn’t approve? Can you trust Google to prevent its (apparently many) “social-justice warrior” employees from trawling through your personal data looking for dirt, and then leaking it?

As Robert Tracinski writes, this is the big danger for Google: “The most dangerous part is that they are now beginning to be seen by the public (or revealed, depending on how you look at it) as politicized entities. Politicized entities to whom we are giving enormous amounts of data on our lives, thoughts and interests.”

There should, at a minimum, be Congressional hearings.

24 thoughts on “Google’s CEO”

  1. The game is to accuse others of things they never said. Since they never said it, they have to do everything they can to avoid looking at the facts. It’s all misdirection.

    Today a democrat on fox news just said the president called all Mexicans rapists. They’ve been saying that lie since Trump came down the elevator. How many days has it been that all the talking heads have not been denouncing this lie every day it’s been said?

    The average age of news reporters is 27. That’s in the adult range (supposed to be.) They are capable of recognizing a basic lie. The proof is the avoidance of a simple suggestion like a red/green markup. If they didn’t recognize lies they’d have no objection to something that wouldn’t expose them.

    We can’t allow lies to have any life.

    1. There is also Liberal Equivalency.

      For example, if the NFL solicited from their players a “conversation about race” and Colin Kaepernick responded with an internal e-mail questioning the NFL’s “patriotism posture” when many NFL black players feel threatened by “what is going on in America”, and if that private e-mail was made public through the actions of some Trumpistas to discredit Black Lives Matter in general and Mr. Kaepernick in particular, I would be vigorously defending Mr. Kaepernick.

      Furthermore, had James Damore attended a scientific or trade conference to give a talk about his work at Google, and had he opened his talk with completely tangential remarks accusing Google of hypocrisy in its Gender Diversity policy, I would be the first person to say, “Fire the guy!”

      Of course none of those things took place, but were they to have taken place, you know my position. But since these things never took place, I wish Mr. Kaepernick the best of success in finding a quarterback position on an NFL team given the combination of his football skills and the public image he has cultivated of himself in what is essentially an entertainment enterprise.

      I also wish Mr. Pichai Sundararajan the best of success in retaining his job running what is essentially an advertising company, where public image is the product and his continued at-will employment indeed depends on pleasing all of the people all of the time.

  2. Hi there Boys and Girls! Do you know what a secret is? Do you want to know a secret? Sometimes grown-ups and especially parents keep secrets because they don’t want to scare their children. Should children keep secrets from their parents? No, that is usually not a good choice. But sometimes people say things that other people misunderstand. And do you know what happens what that happens? Sometimes people go to trial in a court with a judge and sometimes a jury. And sometimes people are given a lot of money because of something that was done wrong to them. Grown-ups will sometimes call this “Early Retirement”.

    – Mr. Spain’s Neighborhood

  3. “Federal labour law … California law …”
    But we all know that the letter of the law matters only if you get an honest court, or the people are fed up enough about the corruption to force a change. The safe bet is google won’t be prosecuted in Comifornia for persecuting a challenger of the Narrative.

  4. The whole concept of these company diversity rules are absurd. The notion is that a company needs a diverse workforce. By definition, this means people that are different. So here a guy points out that the differences will tend to cause some to be attracted to STEM roles and others not to be. It’s not an absolute, but as differences go, there is a range, and some will range more into STEM category than others.

    Alas, when the differences are pointed out, the company diversity officer can’t handle it. You see, all these different people have equivalent traits that are useful in STEM roles. But if we are all equal, how can we be diverse?

    Of course the real answer is simple. Company diversity isn’t about diversity at all. Like all double speak terminology, it is the opposite. It’s about paying all employees the same, regardless of skill, merit, or value to the company.

    Except companies aren’t set up that way. They pay STEM employees more than administrative assistants, the graphic artists, HR, or the janitorial staff. So what to do? Try to push people in STEM roles whether they fit in them or not. Put that square in the round hole, and when it doesn’t fit, hammer it home. Because it’s a back door to universal basic income, and that’s a worthwhile Marxist ideal.

      1. When an American conservative talks of equality, he refers to law and standards. When a leftoid talks of equality, he refers to outcome. 2 quite different matters.

    1. Back when I worked for the FAA they promoted a secretary to head of IT. She had absolutely no IT background and qualified applicants existed. They also had an operator that didn’t know how to get data off some 9-track tape data I ordered. I had to show her how to do it on a system I’d never used before. How do people get or keep these jobs?

      Perhaps I should ask the Awan family?

    2. ” But if we are all equal, how can we be diverse?”,

      The answer to your question can be found in the Declaration of Independence.
      “Diversity” is shorthand for “don’t be racist” and “don’t be sexist”, and “don’t be homophobic”, so on.

      So when you ask ” But if we are all equal, how can we be diverse?”, my answer is: We can be different in our race/ethnicity and we can be different genders and different sexual orientations, and on, and thus we are “diverse”, but we should all equal, as in “all men are created equal”.

      I guess it wasn’t self-evident for you, but I hope this answer helps!

      1. The whole diversity thing was sold as being diversity of background. Your skin color doesn’t give you magic powers or +5 to this or that. Your background, the way you think, and your life experience was supposed to be what counted. But to those on the left, skin color trumps all.

        Diversity of background is supposed to lead to different modes of thinking, looking at problems, and finding solutions. This is true and totally independent of race and gender! Monoculture is not diversity, even if people have different sexual preferences or ethnicities.

        And diversity isn’t in the Declaration of Independence.

        Being treated as equals doesn’t mean quotas, it means treating individuals as equals and recognizing that individuals all make their own choices and have their own unique backgrounds. This is the very opposite of identity politics and the left’s corruption of diversity.

      2. “Diversity” is shorthand for “don’t be racist” and “don’t be sexist”, and “don’t be homophobic”, so on.

        No, “diversity” is shorthand for “Let’s make sure we have a wide variety of colors and genders, as long as they don’t indulge in any wrongthink.”

      3. “Diversity” is shorthand for “don’t be racist” and “don’t be sexist”, and “don’t be homophobic”, so on.

        No, that is double-speak. Diversity means to do exactly the opposite of what you’re saying. Judge people by the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, their gender or their gender-preference.

        If we were doing what Martin Luther King had asked us to do and what was put down in the Declaration, then diversity would not be an issue.

        When was the last time you stepped on a college campus, 1985?

  5. “……would you be willing to highlight the memo using green to indicate the “much” that you identified as “fair to debate” and red to flag the “portions” that you deemed Code-of-Conduct violations?”

    Google will never do that – it would complicate their case if it should get to court.

    1. Well, Google will not do that now after they have created this mess. This is sort of like how the White House Counsel has to take Mr. Trump aside and tell him to lay of the Tweets.

  6. Blogger and former law professor Ann Althouse has an unattributed and unsubstantiated quote from a Goolag resident to the effect that Damore’s language must be interpreted differently depending on the identity group.

    If an employee suggests older, or perhaps younger, employees statistically have or perhaps don’t have, attitudes or perhaps experiences relevant to a certain task, that is wholly unexceptional and not at all “age-ist”.

    If one suggests that males (or perhaps females) statistically are likely to have, or likely not to have, attitudes or distractions suited to, or interfering with, the task, that is problematic. Possibly even sexist. But it would not be so exceptionally sexist as to warrant dismissal.

    If however one were to suggest that statistical indications suggest that Blacks (or Jews, Han Chinese, Cubans, Arabs, … ) are more or less likely to have, or not to have, attitudes or attributes suitable for certain general categories of task, (even though the suggestion clearly and repeatedly emphasizes that individual persons of color, of course, might be well matched to any specific individual task) THAT statistical claim is so exceptionally racist that it can’t be tolerated, much less debated with the underlying measures and math scrutinized, and so the publisher of such an opinion must be immediately outed and fired AND black-listed from the industry *AND* punched in the face for being a Nazi.

    It is claimed that the same assertion in the same language is tolerated of an objectified age group or an objectified gender-role but not tolerated of an objectified race.

    Leading to the question of whether or not the assertion can be tolerated with regard to an objectified political association. As in: ‘Perhaps some “progressives” are less likely to come to unbiased, useful, and objective analysis of statistics than most “traditional” or “conservative” analysts.’

  7. Bob has accidentally hit on the exact problem of the left:

    We can be different in our race/ethnicity and we can be different genders and different sexual orientations, and on, and thus we are “diverse”, but we should all equal, as in “all men are created equal”.

    Words are ambiguous. Thoughts are not. The left just loves playing word game for the purpose of justifying things the way you can make 1 = 2 if you allow dividing by zero.

    So what is the purpose of his little diversity and equal definition? First is to have control and moral superiority. Equal can not be in terms of opportunity for two reasons. Different people will have different results. The lefty is not guaranteed to be at the top of those results, So equal has to be in the sense of results (any other definition for equal is thus wrongthink, a priori) which means keeping the achievers down.

    Diversity of thought is simply not acceptable. But why demand diversity in areas that really don’t matter (gender, color, etc.) when people are free to make their own choices? Control and moral superiority again.

    50/50 is simple thought. Like planets in circular orbits.

    If Google doesn’t employ people in 50/50 proportions it must be prejudice because prejudice does exist (see how simple lefty proof is?) Once that’s decided by the morally superior no other possibility is allowed. So the fact that pulling from a pool that may be 90/10 and not resulting in 50/50 must mean the 90/10 is also the result of prejudice rather than choice (because we found Harvey Mudd has a 50/50 ratio of programmers by gender so that ‘proves’ they all must.)

    It’s really easy if you start with your conclusion and ignore everything that defies it. Heretics must be destroyed. Plain observations must be ignore or explained away. Knowing everything is such a burden.

    Like being a fascist is ok if you call yourself antifa.

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