William F Buckley once said, “Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views.” Peter Rex has found that such shock and offense now takes the form of active repression, and is picking up his billion-dollar company and moving it away from the Left Coast to the Lone Star State. From The Wall Street Journal:
The West Coast’s high cost of living is measured not only in dollars but in stifling conformity.
By Peter Rex¹ | June 26, 2020 | 6:38 PM EDT
I’m moving my business headquarters off the West Coast. We tried San Francisco. We tried the Seattle area. Both were wonderful in their own ways, especially in natural beauty and personal friendships. But both have become hostile to the principles and policies that enable people to live abundantly in the broadest sense.
That’s why my company is in the final stages of purchasing office space in Austin, Texas. By the end of the year, I hope to move dozens of employees to the Lone Star State and to be ready to hire hundreds more. While uprooting a big part of a billion-dollar company isn’t easy, the decision to move to Texas wasn’t hard. Our staff and their families will be able to flourish to a much greater extent.
Leaving the West Coast might seem strange for a company focused on tech ventures and related investments. It’s true that the company has benefitted greatly from the larger pool of forward thinkers and industry disrupters in the tech hot spots of San Francisco and Seattle. But the best places to be in tech have now become some of the worst places to raise a family, practice a faith, or even think freely. This hurts my team and the business.
These areas are culturally diverse but increasingly monolithic in terms of ideology. In the past few weeks, radical protesters took over a portion of Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. The mood in the ares was that this experiment in anarchy was acceptable and even praiseworthy. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan even issued a statement commending the “First Amendment activities” of the occupiers.
The response to the Covid-19 pandemic has been similarly disheartening. The West Coast’s progressive policy makers imposed some of the nation’s most regressive lockdown measures. While heir one-size-fits-all approach may have worked for those with flexible jobs and few other commitments, they utterly neglected the millions of employees who couldn’t work from home,² the families that needed to get out of the house, and the religious believers who wanted nothing more than to worship. Those concerns were treated as secondary.
There’s much more at the original. But, further down, is the real money line:
It has been disheartening to learn how closed the most “open” minds can be.
The political “orthodoxy” of the region, Mr Rex said, has made people of faith concerned that they cannot express their views without being shunned or attacked. I would add, #CancelCultured out of a job. JVW noted, on Patterico’s Pontifications, how Sue Schafer is a young graphic designer, a woman who served no public role, was exposed by The Washington Post, in a 3,000 word article, for wearing ‘blackface’ makeup to a Hallowe’en party in 2018, which wound up costing Miss Schafer her job.
I previously noted how The New York Times was internally roiling over the decision to publish Senator Tom Cotton’s (R-AR) OpEd piece advocating the use of troops to stop the #BlackLivesMatter rioters from destroying urban areas. Just a few days later, editorial page editor James Bennet was fired resigned, and deputy editorial page editor James Dao was demoted reassigned to the newsroom. “All the News That’s Fit to Print” apparently no longer includes opposing viewpoints, not in The New York Times.
It’s a good thing that The Wall Street Journal exists, because neither the Post nor the Times would have printed it!
If those two bastions of liberal thinking can get people fired over a Thoughtcrime, would it be any wonder that ordinary citizens would be worried about the effective establishment of the Thought Police, the Thinkpol in George Orwell’s 1984. As I said just yesterday, I am very glad that I am retired, so that the idiots of #CancelCulture can’t get me fired for saying something of which they disapprove!
Mr Rex noted that many tech entrepreneurs have concluded that the amount of talent on the West Coast is so great that they cannot afford to relocate away, regardless of the drawbacks, but said:
I reject that answer. The biggest talent pool in the world doesn’t matter if the ocean that surrounds it is intellectually shallow.
In that, he is absotively, posilutely right. How can we expect people to be able to think outside the box, to be innovative, in their jobs if they are confined in a rigid conformity of single-minded thought? But that is what the new liberal Thinkpol would create.
In The Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx assumed that there would be a commonality of thought among the proletariat, that all would think the same due to what Herr Marx considered to be their common interests. The various Communist and socialist states created since then have all devolved into authoritarian, totalitarian states, with secret police organizations to repress any and all dissent. What dictators created in China, in North Korea and the old Soviet Union, today’s #woke Americans are creating outside of government.
¹ – Mr Rex is founder and CEO of Rex Teams, a tech, investment and real-estate firm.
² – It is no surprise to me that then elites who make up our political leadership have no concept of how most working Americans have to live their lives.
Please visit my Red State story archive for more of my articles.
My personal website, The First Street Journal, includes articles not necessarily in Red State’s paradigm.
You can follow me on Twitter.