Dan Gilbert, philosopher king, pens embarrassing inspirational column

Dec 2, 2016 at 1:27 pm
click to enlarge Dan Gilbert, philosopher king, pens embarrassing inspirational column
Photo via Flickr user TechCrunch
Billionaire Dan Gilbert is spouting banal pop-philosophical drivel on a brand-new Arianna Huffington platform known as Thrive Global.

The man who's currently asking cash-strapped Cuyahoga County, Ohio for ~$70 million to fund upgrades at the Quicken Loans Arena wants us all to know that "entropy is the world's natural state" and that with energy and passion, we can all countervail against the world's abiding chaos.

Gilbert, who Deadspin once coined the "Whore of Quicken," has brought his financial wherewithal to bear on a site with content verticals like "Wisdom," "Wonder" and "Unplug & Recharge."

It's a site, according to Huffington herself, that was "born in response to the need to take control of our lives, offering new strategies and tools, based on the latest science, to address the unintended consequences of [technology's] profound and invasive changes."

And what better strategist and carpenter than Dan Gilbert himself to apprise us of the latest science?

"The fact that you have not paid any attention to something in a long time, or ever, invariably means that it did not have your passion, urgency, deep attention and motivation," preaches a solemn Gilbert, a man who last week spent more than a full quarter of professional basketball bothering Fox Sports announcers Fred McLeod and Austin Carr on air by naming names of former U.S. Presidents and inviting them to guess if they were Presidents or former NBA second-round picks.

"Because you are reading this blog, I’m fairly certain that just your involvement alone will improve the ‘thing.’" What?

But give us more, Zen Master Gilb:

"One of the biggest deceptions in the world is self-inflicted by so-called ‘conservative’ people who, through their myopic lens, are only comfortable when everything remains the same, consistent and reliable. The vast majority of our planet lives in this fantasy state where they convince themselves that they must delay any decision until there is 100% certainty.

Those with the worst strains of this disease are known as ‘bureaucrats.’ ‘Status quo’ is their religion. They worship the ‘God of Sameness.’ But what they fail to understand is that everything in the universe is subjected to the laws of entropy. Without energy, determination or a counter to these powerful forces, the ‘status quo’ is meaningless. When everything is connected to everything else, you can’t leave one thing alone and expect it to remain the same."
Lord knows what on earth he's advocating here. It's possible his nonsense is directed at the bureaucrats of Cuyahoga County, who, it's worth noting, are much less beholden to the God of Sameness than they are to their staggering debt. That debt is thanks in no small part to people like Gilbert, who like to use sermons about determination to bilk a fearful, prostrate public.

Billionaires are also among the least qualified people to talk about risk, and among the ugliest to regard with contempt the conditions or behaviors of world's "vast majority." But by all means, read Dan Gilbert's column and recognize the inherent worthiness of your cause. If nothing else, feel free to shake things up in defiance of the world's entropy and blow your life savings at the casino.


(This article was originally published in Metro Times sister paper Cleveland Scene.)