I have a strange balance of cynicism and idealism in the way I see the world. One area where I’ve been overly idealistic is when thinking about the power, influence, and voice that having large sums of money give you. In our democracy every person has a voice but the rich have a louder and more respected voice. I’ve tried to convince myself otherwise – that the poor and scrappy can get their voice heard too – but a few recent events have left me feeling jaded.
These events have one thing in common – the rich using the justice system and the ridiculous cost of going to court to get what they want. It is a crazy sort of vigilanteeism. One event is Peter Thiel’s war to destroy Gawker. Peter Thiel is a billionaire that was attacked by the online publication around 10 years ago and now he’s found a way to destroy them by financing lawsuits for third parties, like Hulk Hogan, against them. Another event is fictional but I’m sure it happens in reality also. It is the lawsuit that Hooli brings against Pied Piper on the TV show Silicon Valley. Hooli is the multi billion dollar giant corporation that can’t compete with the technology created by the poor start up Pied Piper on its own. It has to bring a frivolous lawsuit against them in order to stop them. The other example is private and I’m not going to share it here but I hope you get the idea from the first two.
I feel like justice in America is a luxury for the rich and I don’t like that. But I don’t know a better way to do it either.