Thursday, October 6, 2011

it's hard not to fall for the hype

i'm finding it difficult to trust myself, when it comes to the news. for example, amanda knox. at first i fell for the sex-crazy version, satanic ceremony, and so on. gradually, the media projection my eyes adopted wore off. i read several books by people meeting her in prison, examined the evidence - the rolling stone article revelatory - and realized i'd been bamboozled. i felt as sad as relieved when she acquitted and released two days ago. it's something that never should have happened, yet look at my original response.

and now steve jobs has died. most of us couldn't help admiring him, though i haven't found apple products at all useful. his dropping out of college, seeing the symbol potential for computers, his firing from apple and the return, his wonderful commencement address at stanford available on youtube, what's there not to like? i just finished the presentation secrets of steve jobs by carmine gallo, a lot of great tips.

unfortunately, just before his death yesterday i ran across two caveats, which we should all remember when worshipping the rich and successful. the first on jobs as a philanthropist (or not): here, i think we can give him the benefit of the doubt. he died much too young (56) to begin thinking of his public legacy, though with the years of illness he had the chance.

the other bit, though, much more damning, with hard evidence. mike daisey, a contemporary storyteller/actor presently doing a one-person show in new york: it's about how apple products produced in china, the polluted villages and kids as young as 12 working. alas, i believe jobs could have funneled some of his billions back into creating better working conditions and helping the people who created his wealth.

of course, who am i to talk? i'm certainly a self-indulgent as anybody. luckily, nobody worships me or envies my success. i did run across a box of old slides the other day and posted them.  i do see a guy on some sort of mission. unfortunately, his heroes poets like baudelaire. you can see it in his eyes...