Would Tech Oligarchs Dominate a Biden Administration?

Eric Schmidt/PHOTO: jdlasica (CC)

Should Joe Biden end up being the next President of the United States, former Alphabet (parent company of Google) CEO and Chairman Eric Schmidt has been talked about the most as his top advisor for tech issues.

The Financial Times reported last week that Biden is looking to the big names in Silicon Valley to create an in-White-House tech task force, led by Schmidt. The article said Biden has already hired away top executives from Apple and Facebook for his prospective transition team. And according to CBS News, his political team is advised by executives with tech firms formed by Schmidt and LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman, both mega-donors for Biden’s election efforts.

Some far-leftists apparently held out hope that Biden might gravitate towards the Elizabeth Warren “break up Big Tech” perspective and embrace more big government regulation, especially after he approved an October fundraiser (which he did not attend) hosted by Big Tech critics.

“Biden has proven to be elusive on tech issues,” liberal tech news website Recode reported. “Activists on the left hope that he will govern in a less tech-friendly way than Barack Obama did. But…he has not made tech regulation a campaign priority and has left both the activists and the tech companies themselves largely speculating about what a Biden administration would mean for them.”

But despite allowing the fundraiser, progressives had to know it was hope against hope, as Schmidt has hosted such events for Biden as well.

“Another interpretation of that,” Recode continued in its report, “is that Biden is malleable on the issue — and therefore can be influenced by political assets such as campaign fundraising potential.” There aren’t many tech leaders with greater promise on that front than Schmidt.

Biden’s history has shown that his top priorities are demagoguery, self-gratification and self-enrichment, not progressive principles.

So Schmidt would seem to be a logical choice to lead his technology task force in the White House.

First of all, Schmidt donated at least $2.9 million to Democrat-supporting committees and campaigns (including Biden’s), according to a mid-year Daily Caller report based on Federal Election Committee records. True to Biden’s narrative form, an ad produced by the Future Forward USA PAC – to which Schmidt gave $750,000 – depicted groups of white supremacists, wealthy businessmen, and Russian supporters of Vladimir Putin as backers of Trump.

Schmidt even adopted Biden’s top line of attack against President Trump – his alleged failure to “control” COVID-19 – as recently as two months ago.

“People have died unnecessarily because government was slow to react to common and simple things like mask wearing and social distancing,” Schmidt said in a podcast he recently created for himself. “Because there’s a failure of direction, a failure of leadership at pretty much every level of our government, people are left to make their own calculations as to what they should be doing.”

The oligarch, a former top donor and campaign advisor for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential run, made the statements while serving as chairman of the advisory Defense Innovation Board under the Trump administration. Deep-state skulduggery like that is certainly welcome in a Biden White House.

Also like Biden, Schmidt has an affinity for China. Again invoking COVID-19, earlier this year he criticized the administration for its detachment from the communist country after it unleashed the virus on the world.

“You would think that when we had one common enemy around the world – this virus that’s killing millions of people around the world – we would unite…,” Schmidt told CNBC in May. “I think it’s really important to understand that as you decouple from China – and they’re perfectly capable of building their own chips, their own software – they’re not coming back and that hurts us.”

As Hunter Biden’s “laptop from hell” and his business partner Tony Bobulinski revealed in October, Joe Biden seems more than happy to let his last name be used to reap financial deals (as long as Joe’s name is kept off the books) from foreign nations. His “soft on China” stance is well-established. “Come on, man…,” he said last year. “They’re not bad folks, folks. But guess what, they’re not competition for us.” 

Schmidt is right there with him.

After the Trump administration limited the access of Chinese students from studying in the United States earlier this year, Schmidt said the move is “against our self-interest.”

“One of the things that we looked at was the role of Chinese students in American research,” he said at a tech summit in June. “And for those of you who are shocked by this, I’m sorry but I’ll tell you the truth, that many of the top graduate students are foreign-born and typically Chinese. That’s partly because the really, really smart Chinese researchers would prefer to be here. They love America! And they love the freedoms…they want academic freedom.”

And Schmidt – who in 2017 said, after Trump throttled back H-1B work visas that tech depended heavily upon, was the “single stupidest policy” – expounded on the theme in a June commentary he wrote for Barron’s.

“One of the determining factors for whether the future of tech will be defined in the U.S. or China is human capital,” Schmidt opined. “The ability to attract and retain top-tier talent from around the world is the backbone of a trifecta where the best talent comes to the U.S. to work at the best institutions on the most cutting-edge intellectual property… Multiculturalism is a powerful core competency for our country, and we should be doing everything we can to reinforce it.”

Spoken like a true Obama/Biden open-borders aficionado.

And Schmidt, like Biden, has put the kibosh on disclosures about potential sexual misconduct in his personal life or among those he’s overseen. He left the chairmanship of Alphabet in late 2017 under the cloud of the corporate “#MeToo” reckoning following a corporate culture that allowed supervisors – including himself – to date underlings. The company made a lot of complaints go away with payoffs, including a $310-million September lawsuit settlement with shareholders over executives’ sexual misconduct.

Reports in 2017 also detailed Schmidt’s “string of affairs” while maintaining his marriage to wife Wendy, though a source said there was “no sexual harassment.”

Biden is also secretive about allegations against him over sexual impropriety, preventing the University of Delaware from releasing his records from when he served as a U.S. Senator, when he allegedly sexually assaulted former employee Tara Reade.

A sympathetic tech expert can help him when it comes to covering trails about embarrassing evidence, and Schmidt likes to hide what he’s doing. It took a June court order to force him to open meetings and materials pertaining to another government commission that he led.

And when he sees an obstacle to something he wants, Schmidt just finds or buys a workaround, like Biden did with son Hunter and his brother James, who worked out foreign deals for him with a wink and a nod. In Schmidt’s case, as one example, he didn’t like losing access to the European Union caused by this year’s COVID travel restrictions.

So what did he do? He bought access by becoming a citizen of the Mediterranean island nation of Cyprus, thanks to a lax, scandal-ridden “passport for sale” program that it has now been eliminated.