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Enter the characters you see below Sorry, we just need to make sure you’re not a robot. 4 5 1 4 how Does Discord Make Money 2 1 . Peter Thiel’s Money Talks, in Contentious Ways. Peter Thiel, a Facebook board member, in his Manhattan apartment. Peter Thiel is Silicon Valley’s homegrown Cassandra.

He warned for years that the big tech companies were arrogant and clueless and less good for mankind than they believed. Comeuppance, the billionaire investor warned, was coming. Thiel, the storm is centered on Facebook, whose board he has been a member of practically since its founding. Even people paid to see the future didn’t see that one coming. We were far from perfect in doing that. Two subjects are currently overwhelming everything else: President Trump, whom Mr. Thiel aggressively backed for president, and Facebook, whose core mission is being called into question in the wake of the Russian revelations. Thiel said in his new Midtown Manhattan apartment, which is so far up in the clouds that it literally looks down on Trump Tower.

Despite the proximity, the mutual enthusiasm between Mr. Thiel spoke at the Republican National Convention in 2016, there were unsourced media reports that said Mr. Trump wanted to put him on the Supreme Court. But now even photo ops are rare. I can get access anytime I want. That does not seem to be the president he got. But he said he had no regrets about his endorsement. Thiel, right, with President-elect Donald J.

Trump at a meeting with tech industry leaders in December 2016. The White House did not respond to a request for comment. Thiel is routinely labeled a libertarian. A lesser-known but possibly deeper influence was the French philosopher René Girard, who taught at Stanford University when Mr. For 15 years, on and off, Mr. Thiel sat in on a study group about Mr.

Our desires are not our own. They get shaped powerfully by the society around us. It was this illumination that helped him see the potential of Facebook — where people could find out in intimate and addictive detail what their friends were up to — when it was barely a year old. He sold most of his holdings in 2012 as Facebook went public. 500 billion, he sold most of what he had left.

Last summer, there was a flap when a memo by a fellow board member, Reed Hastings, the chief executive of Netflix, appeared in The New York Times. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, did not ask him to step down from the board, and reports that he wants to leave the board are incorrect, Mr. He declined to say exactly how much or what kind of advice the Facebook board was offering Mr. Zuckerberg, but defended the company from criticism that it was slow to wake up to what the Russians did. Remember when Trump said the election was going to be rigged? How dare you question the integrity of the electoral process? They did not think things were so hackable.

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It was a mistake, but an understandable mistake. The anger now being turned on Facebook, Mr. Thiel argued, is less about Russia specifically and more about tech arrogance — its failure to do so much for so many. It is a sentiment that helped put Mr. Silicon Valley says the future is going to be better than the past. That is the propaganda, if you will. A friend of his in Silicon Valley had the idea of running for governor of California this year.

Thiel’s advice was that he had better have a good answer to this question: Why is tech good for the average person in California? He declined to identify the friend, but it is well known in tech circles that Sam Altman, the president of Y Combinator, the prominent start-up accelerator, was thinking about running. There is a big painting of a cresting wave in Mr. Thiel’s living room, and it might as well be a visual metaphor for what is going on in big tech now.

But there is some point where it gets crazy and self-delusional. The prospect of government regulation looms. 300,000 to Josh Hawley, who was campaigning to become Missouri’s attorney general. Hawley won, and in November he opened an antitrust investigation of Google.

The news last month that Mr. Thiel is moving from San Francisco to Los Angeles reflects a shift that is as much mental as literal. Getting out of the tech bubble, he figures, will give him more clarity about his investments. Thiel’s contentious ideas was destroying Gawker, the online publisher.

He secretly financed the privacy lawsuit that Hulk Hogan, the former pro wrestler, filed against the media company, which Mr. That led to Gawker’s bankruptcy in 2016. A news operation that specialized in deflating the arrogance of Silicon Valley should have been to Mr. But he argues that his philosophy is consistent here. The ability to speak and not have every word you say get distorted, to have wrong ideas and then be able to correct them — these notions were powerfully undercut by Gawker. Thiel is still pursuing the remnants of Gawker in court, which has prompted accusations that he wants to remove all of its content from the internet as a final victory. I don’t think it makes sense to destroy them.

A version of this article appears in print on , on Page B1 of the New York edition with the headline: A High Tech Contrarian, Full of Contentious Ideas. This article possibly contains original research. The Thirty-Six Stratagems is a Chinese essay used to illustrate a series of stratagems used in politics, war, and civil interaction. Its focus on the use cunning and deception both on the battlefield and in court have drawn comparisons to Sun Tzu’s The Art of War.