An op-ed published in the Sacramento Bee this week called libertarian billionaire Peter Thiel a "villain" comparable to recently deceased mass murderer Charles Manson.
"Manson’s gone, but California may have just the villain to replace him," wrote the Zócalo Public Square‘s Joe Matthews.
Matthews lamented that with Manson's death, the great Bay Area community lacked a common enemy as it did during the killer's reign of terror. "Villains can be galvanizing, energizing societies to protect the innocent, defend democracy, or address wrongdoing. Villains also allow us to recognize the evil within ourselves," he wrote.
At first Matthews considered Trump as the new Manson-like villain, but dismissed the idea.
"Yes, he’s waging war against California and its people," he wrote. "But he is an unsatisfying villain, for reasons both personal (his lies are simply too obvious ) and geopolitical (we are rooting for him not to start a nuclear war)."
"When I asked Bay Area people to nominate a true villain from among their number, one name kept coming up: Peter Thiel," he declared.
Matthews complained the PayPal founder is "attacking our institutions" and "has railed against democracy."
"Thiel is a graduate of San Mateo High and Stanford who rails against government-backed schools and encouraged people not to go to college. He’s an immigrant who supported Trump and the anti-immigrant provocateur Ann Coulter. While backing nationalist politicians, he bought himself citizenship in New Zealand," Matthews wrote.
Thiel was born in Germany before moving to the United States as an infant. He obtained New Zealand citizenship as well in 2011 after only having visited the country four times at the time of application, and the short time period by which he became a citizen drew attention. The Economist reported in 2017 that he was given a special fast track to citizenship under a rule that allows the normal requirements to be waived under "exceptional circumstances."
Thiel’s New Zealand citizenship application stressed his strong contribution to the economy.
Published under: Peter Thiel