I’m torn somewhere between liking this piece and dismayed by its ambiguity and lack of focus.
What I’ll say is that neoliberal technocrats have utterly failed at understanding human relations and building systems intended to meet human needs. Blinded by their ideology of the supremacy of the metric.
This goes back to the foundations of economics and a belief in the ‘rational actor’ out to maximize return with each transaction, market driven or otherwise. Taylor and his theory of Scientific Management has had particularly pernicious unintended consequences. On the one hand, factory automation led to widespread availability of consumer goods. On the other, most of it is poorly made crap, and the people making it are measured in performance by the second to be whipped into improving ‘efficiency’.
But where I think the essay fails is in presuming the people engaged in this — particularly at the state and corporate CEO level — don’t understand what they’re doing and why. They may extol the virtues of entrepreneurialism and efficient markets in public, but when it comes to marketing goods they have no compunction about hiring the best advertising firm on Madison Avenue to use the power of the irrational to sell goods.
As for gamergate, I’ve become convinced it was a recruiting drive and test of a state sponsored election influence campaign run by Russia. So, I doubt the author would agree with me there.
Still, thanks for the post. I read it. So at least I improved your read through stats.