Friday, July 22, 2016

Thiel gets standing ovation at GOP convention

Silicon Valley's Peter Thiel receives standing ovation at GOP convention - Mercury News - Julia Prodis Sulek and Matthew Artz:

July 21, 2016 - "Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel received a standing ovation at the Republican National Convention on Thursday night when he said he was proud to be gay.... The libertarian-leaning co-founder of PayPal and venture capitalist made his convention debut just days after the Republican Party adopted one of the most anti-gay platforms in history....

"Thiel received a warm reception in the convention hall, even after he essentially chided the platform committee for debating which bathrooms transgender people should use. He called the debate 'a distraction from our real problems'....

"He said he doesn't 'pretend to agree' with every plank in the party's platform, 'but fake culture wars only distract us from our economic decline. And nobody in this race is being honest about it except Donald Trump'....

"Thiel, 48, has always been known for his contrarian political views, but he still raised plenty of eyebrows in Silicon Valley when he signed up to be one of three Trump delegates from San Francisco....

"In his speech, he said he supported Trump because he's a builder, not a politician. Although the economy looks strong in Silicon Valley, he said, 'Silicon Valley is a small place. Drive out to Sacramento, or even just across the bridge to Oakland, and you won't see the same prosperity. That's just how small it is. Across the country, wages are flat.'

"He said the government is 'broken' under Democratic leadership.

"'Our nuclear bases still use floppy disks. Our newest fighter jets can't even fly in the rain. And it would be kind to say the government's software works poorly, because much of the time it doesn't even work at all,' he said.

"'This is a staggering decline for a country that completed the Manhattan Project. We don't accept such incompetence in Silicon Valley, and we must not accept it from our government.'

"Thiel originally pumped $2 million into former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina's SuperPAC, but later switched to Trump in a move that stunned other valley leaders turned off by the Republican nominee's protectionist policies and jabs at Apple's Tim Cook, Amazon's Jeff Bezos and Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg."

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