Jeffrey Epstein liked to believe he was a big thinker and collected scientists in much the way he collected young girls, although he seems not to have considered them quite as disposable. Some names are surfacing again and again – Stephen Pinker, Martin Nowak, Lawrence Krauss, and the whole MIT Media Lab. (With the exception of Ethan Zuckerman and Nathan Matias, who have quit the Media Lab because of Epstein’s funding.)
BuzzFeed has a list of scientists in Epstein’s collection – largely older white men (you are surprised?). I was not entirely surprised to see another theme that has always annoyed me.
I’ve always thought that bringing ideas together and thinking across disciplinary lines is important. It can make information more accessible to non-specialists and, in theory at least, promote new thinking and new solutions. So I’ve been attracted to attempts like the Edge website. I checked it out early on and was disappointed to see that the innovative thinkers featured were the same people who are known for being innovative thinkers but have never actually produced what I would consider innovative thoughts.
[It’s Edge.org. I’m not linking to it because Google says it may be hacked.]
Rather, they piddle around with what they consider to be Big Ideas, from which not much has flowed, other than praise from other certified innovative thinkers. A closed system.
IIRC, there was a provision at Edge to include some of the great unwashed, but the process looked like a lot more than I wanted to go through to join a group I was doubtful about.
And guess what! It was one of Jeffrey Epstein’s creations!
The BuzzFeed list is very much like that – I think that several of them were part of Edge.
The problem for those not properly certified is that this bunch clogs up the opinion pages and book publishers and, most importantly, soaks up funding. That was undoubtedly the reason some of the scientists clustered around Epstein – he gave them money.
It’s another argument for taxing the inordinately rich back down to extremely wealthy and using the taxes to support activities that benefit all of us and are shared through a formula that is more equitable than a pedophile’s ego.