Mark Zuckerberg recently penned a 5,700 word document on his Facebook profile, listing out the future for Facebook and what that means for all of us. I don’t much care if you like Zuckerberg or hate the idea that everyone is spending more time on the internet today. The fact is they are and Facebook is more influential than ever. There are 1.86 billion active Facebook users today.
Mark Zuckerberg: Political Influencer
Should we worry as conservatives? I know many feel Zuckerberg may lean left in a bunch of political areas, but at the end of the day he has a massive business to run. I do get the vibe that Zuckerberg may be interested in politics someday, but as of right now he was one of the youngest most successful CEOs on the planet. He has a job to do.
I want to examine some of top quotes from his document. I encourage you to read the full letter as well.
Words of Zuckerberg
“Today we are close to taking our next step. Our greatest opportunities are now global — like spreading prosperity and freedom, promoting peace and understanding, lifting people out of poverty, and accelerating science. Our greatest challenges also need global responses — like ending terrorism, fighting climate change, and preventing pandemics. Progress now requires humanity coming together not just as cities or nations, but also as a global community.”
I agree 100% with the opportunities before us. They are all honorable and should be a goal of humanity. I also happen to agree with his views on global responses, minus the climate change which is utterly phony in my opinion. If others all around the world would rise up against terrorism, then these despicable vermin (the terrorists) scattered across the desert would have zero existence in their current form of violence and terror.
I do however challenge the idea that a global community is the answer. Although the language barrier is quickly evaporating and will become extinct very shortly thanks to technology, I still must acknowledge that different cultures have different values. I am not sure that this barrier can be hurdled. For instance, as of this article, there are 49 active Dictatorships in the world according to PlanetRulers.com
Dictatorships are vastly different from a free market constitutional republic.
“Facebook can help contribute to answering these five important questions:
- How do we help people build supportive communities that strengthen traditional institutions in a world where membership in these institutions is declining?
- How do we help people build a safe community that prevents harm, helps during crises and rebuilds afterwards in a world where anyone across the world can affect us?
- How do we help people build an informed community that exposes us to new ideas and builds common understanding in a world where every person has a voice?
- How do we help people build a civically-engaged community in a world where participation in voting sometimes includes less than half our population?
- How do we help people build an inclusive community that reflects our collective values and common humanity from local to global levels, spanning cultures, nations and regions in a world with few examples of global communities?”
I rather like the idea of a society that is interconnected where communication is effortless. The point about half the population voting is certainly something that has concerned me for a long time in America. And although I can nod my head with these five points, turning them into successes is a rather long and arduous process.
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So far so good, let’s continue.
However, there has been a striking decline in the important social infrastructure of local communities over the past few decades. Since the 1970s, membership in some local groups has declined by as much as one-quarter, cutting across all segments of the population.
The decline raises deeper questions alongside surveys showing large percentages of our population lack a sense of hope for the future. It is possible many of our challenges are at least as much social as they are economic — related to a lack of community and connection to something greater than ourselves. As one pastor told me: “People feel unsettled. A lot of what was settling in the past doesn’t exist anymore.”
Without probably realizing it, I think Zuckerberg has found the answer to the bloated government entitlement system. A solution that I have been advocating for quite some time. We need local communities.
Think about your life. How much is spent in the local community volunteering, attending events, or engaging in local politics down at the town courthouse? Most likely not very much. We have been seduced into federal politics and have lost touch with the local brand. How does this end the entitlement system?
We used to take care of our own. It started with family. When a family member was down, we picked them up and took care of them. We didn’t go to the government with an outreached hand begging for welfare and food stamps. Local churches once played an important role in taking care of the poor and sick. I foresee a revitalization for these services because we have a need. Many harbor ill will towards the various churches in America, is this is misplaced. I would much rather see my fellow man head over to the local church for soup than checkout at the grocery store with a cart filled with steak and lobster. Only to whip out an EBT food stamps card.
*High Five for local communities Zuckerberg*
But our goal must be to help people see a more complete picture, not just alternate perspectives. We must be careful how we do this. Research shows that some of the most obvious ideas, like showing people an article from the opposite perspective, actually deepen polarization by framing other perspectives as foreign. A more effective approach is to show a range of perspectives, let people see where their views are on a spectrum and come to a conclusion on what they think is right. Over time, our community will identify which sources provide a complete range of perspectives so that content will naturally surface more.
Accuracy of information is very important. We know there is misinformation and even outright hoax content on Facebook, and we take this very seriously. We’ve made progress fighting hoaxes the way we fight spam, but we have more work to do. We are proceeding carefully because there is not always a clear line between hoaxes, satire and opinion. In a free society, it’s important that people have the power to share their opinion, even if others think they’re wrong. Our approach will focus less on banning misinformation, and more on surfacing additional perspectives and information, including that fact checkers dispute an item’s accuracy.
Facebook is in a tough spot on this one. Political polarization is honestly not a major concern of mine. What is more concerning is political party polarization, where we all identify with a party instead of a set principles. The most recent example we saw was in the 2016 Presidential Election (and still goes on today really). Many conservatives sold out to Donald Trump and supported policies such as tariffs, defending the constant flip-flopping, political donations to hardcore left wing democrats, etc.
Instead of us excusing this behavior and policy, we should have instead challenged him from a conservative angle! Sadly, many wanted to defeat Clinton and brainwashed themselves with excuses.
I want to fight the idea of two political parties as best as I can. Which is why I wrote An Argument Against ‘Party Only Voting’ | Choosing The ‘Lesser Of Two Evils’ Isn’t Enough
I believe Zuckerberg should be more committed to the business side of Facebook than worrying about individuals voting and consuming news.
Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook are here to stay. It is not a fad. It is not Myspace.
Running one of the largest companies in the world has placed Zuckerberg into the national spotlight. I am wary of his politics especially on things like “safe space” and “climate change”. I also, as a fellow entrepreneur, have a deep respect and appreciation for Mark Zuckerberg because of the product he has created. Keeping up to date on Facebook is not entertainment. It is taking a look into the future for all of us.
Do you think Mark Zuckerberg has political influence? let us know in the comments section below.