Apr 07, 2021
Peter Thiel criticizes Google and Apple for being too close to China
This news has been received from: CNBC
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Tech investor Peter Thiel criticized big U.S. technology companies for being too close to China at a Tuesday appearance at a virtual event held by the Richard Nixon Foundation.
Thiel, who co-founded PayPal and sits on Facebook's board after making an early investment, is an outspoken voice in the technology investment world is known for contrarian opinions and conservative leanings. He's backed defense contractors like Palantir and publicly supported former President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign for president.
On Wednesday, the Nixon session focused on China, and he was joined by former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien.
Thiel criticized Google for its work on artificial intelligence with Chinese universities, partially because of conversations he claimed to have with company insiders, according to a transcript of the event reviewed by CNBC.
"Since everything in China is a civilian- military fusion, Google was effectively working with the Chinese military, not with the American military," Thiel said. He also sad that Google "insiders" told him that they worked with the Chinese because "they figured they might as well give the technology out the front door, because if they didn't give it – it would get stolen anyway."
Thiel had previously criticized Google in 2019, saying that the FBI and CIA should investigate Google and ask whether it had been compromised by Chinese spies.
A Google spokesperson said at the time: "As we have said before, we do not work with the Chinese military."
Thiel also said that Apple was unlikely to confront China because of its massive supply chain to manufacture iPhones and other products in the country. He noted that other big technology companies like Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft don't have as extensive business interests in the country, in some cases because the Chinese government has restricted what they can do there.
He called for the U.S. to put a "lot of pressure" and scrutiny on Apple because of its labor supply chain in the country.
"Apple is probably the one that's structurally a real problem, because the whole iPhone supply chain gets made from China," Thiel said. "Apple is one that has real synergies with China."
He also appeared to change his position on Bitcoin during the talk. Thiel has invested in Bitcoin companies and previously said he was "long bitcoin" and considers it the "digital equivalent of gold."
On Tuesday, Thiel said that Bitcoin threatens the U.S. dollar.
"Even though I'm sort of a pro-crypto, pro-Bitcoin maximalist person, I do wonder whether at this point Bitcoin should also be thought in part of as a Chinese financial weapon against the U.S., where it threatens fiat money, but it especially threatens the U.S. dollar, and China wants to do things to weaken it, so China's long Bitcoin," Thiel said.
News Source: CNBC
Minneapolis Public Schools to Resume In-Person Learning Monday, Will Close for Chauvin Trial Results
But they’ll soon return to virtual learning, according to a Friday statement.
“On Monday and Tuesday (April 19-20), in-person learning will continue for all grades with corresponding transportation to and from school,” the statement said. “From Wednesday through Friday next week (April 21-23), all in-person learning students in all grades will return home for distance learning. Students will not be required to leave their homes to attend school for the remainder of the week, though school buildings will be open. Over these three days, no athletic events or Minneapolis Kids before- and after-school childcare will be held.”
Monday, jury deliberation begins in the trial of former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin, who stands accused of killing George Floyd.
The results of that deliberation are expected sometime next week, and with the prospect of violent rioting, Minneapolis Public Schools have determined it is best that the students remain at home.
“Peaceful protests are one of the foundations of our democracy. Some students may feel called to participate in collective actions being organized around the city, but MPS also recognizes our primary need and your primary desire to keep students safe,” the school system’s statement said. “We cannot deny the fact that people with ill intentions sometimes take advantage of communities in crisis.”
The statement also said that the Minneapolis community is “moving through an extraordinarily challenging time” after the killing of Daunte Wright in Brookyln Center, a suburb of the city. While attempting to arrest Wright on an outstanding warrant last week, Wright fled before being shot and killed by Brooklyn Center Police officer Kimberly Potter, who has been charged with second degree manslaughter.
Minneapolis Public Schools also said that race could be a topic of conversation in the classroom, and that parents should be prepared for that.
The racism and violence that has been highlighted in these tragic incidents may be widely discussed among some students in our schools. As appropriate and as they are comfortable, teachers will give students the opportunity to process their feelings, how this feels to them personally and how they are impacted by having the eyes of the world on Minneapolis. Understanding that every educator will approach this differently, MPS has provided all educators with resources that are appropriate both to the age of the students being taught and the background and experience of the educator.
These plans are made based on what we know today. Should trial activities change, we will reevaluate, adjust plans and let families and students know as soon as possible.
The statement was signed by Superintendent Ed Graff.
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Pete D’Abrosca is a contributor at The Minnesota Sun and The Star News Network. Follow Pete on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected].