Skip to comments.How Steve Jobs Jobbed The Left
Posted on 06/04/2012 8:52:28 AM PDT by Kaslin
How do you become a business titan that treats employees like garbage, creates products intended to be monopolies, charges excessive prices that result in outrageous profits, practices significant tax avoidance, and yet not get pilloried (on the contrary, become deified) by the anti-business media? Its simple; you are Steve Jobs and you are just too cool to criticize.
Theres no doubt that Steve Jobs was a major player in the development of the personal computer, transformed the animation business, and developed products in the last decade of his life that changed our culture and society. His finest quality was the ability to recognize the needs of his customers without relying on market research. He told people what they needed, and then delivered a product that they may have never thought they wanted but to which they ultimately became addicted.
Yet, as accounted by Walter Isaacson in his recently-published biography of the late Mr. Jobs, the man was a fruitcake (no pun intended since he called himself a fruitarian). His behavior towards other people was, at best, erratic, and very often anti-social.
Perhaps the most telling characterization of Jobs took place amid his confrontation with John Sculley in the mid-1980s. After a harrowing day of dealing with Jobs who had just been relieved of his position as head of the struggling Macintosh division by the Apple Board of Directors Sculley went home and discussed the matter with his wife. She jumped in her car and found Jobs at a local restaurant, where he was plotting a coup. He initially refused to look at her, and, when she insisted upon speaking with him, responded with his practiced, unblinking stare. Recoiling, she told him When I look into most peoples eyes, I see a soul. When I look into yours, I see a bottomless pit, an empty hole, a dead zone. That about sums up the famous Steve Jobs.
But the fact that he broke almost all the rules of the Left and yet remained an icon to them is quite instructive. Here are some examples:
1. He was a horrible employer. He maligned employees in public meetings, and often axed staff members for no good reason. When he needed to reduce the head count at Pixar, he insisted on firing people immediately without any severance. One of his lieutenants pleaded with him to provide two weeks notice, to which he replied OK, but the notice is retroactive to two weeks ago. Can you imagine what would happen if Bank of America ever did that?
2. He exercised maniacal control over his products, adamantly refusing to consider open platforms. When he developed the Macintosh, he didnt allow slots for other cards, and even created customized screws to ensure that only Apple employees could open the boxes. He maintained this closed platform philosophy for the iPod, the iPad, and the iPhone which is one reason why sales of Googles Android-based smart phones have now surpassed the iPhone (and also why sales of Android-based tablets will exceed iPads within the next year).
3. Through extensive marketing, he convinced people to pay more for his products than comparable products offered by his competitors. On the average, iPhones cost about $100 more than equivalent Android-based phones, yet people buy iPhones because of the marketing. How capitalistic. Apple also gets its customers to replace their existing products with newer models (even if the original product isnt obsolete) by refusing to supply major software upgrades. Thats pretty predatory marketing.
4. Steve Jobs was always and Apple continues to be a monumental exporter of American jobs. While President Obama is running around accusing Mitt Romney of exporting jobs, he is well aware that Jobs was the master, creating over 700,000 manufacturing positions in China. To his credit, however, Jobs did tell the President to his face that he exported jobs because the educational system in America is disgraceful due to its domination by teachers unions.
5. Using these business practices, he rang up the largest profits in American history, but does anyone complain about Apples outsized profiteering? The Left complains about banks and oil companies and drug companies because theyre not cool like Steve Jobs. But Apples profit margins are 29.66%, compared to Shell Oils 6.74% or Citibanks 11.73%.
6. And after earning exorbitant profits, he practiced serious tax avoidance (which I wholeheartedly endorse for any entity, but the Left hates.) Whats fascinating is how the Left protected and excused him for this; in fact, the New York Times just published a serious analysis of Apples tax avoidance schemes. Its obvious that the Times knew about this for years, but chose not to write about it when Jobs was alive.
Its also obvious that Jobs was intimately involved in this tax strategy. This was a maniacal man. Isaacson writes that at the gala event celebrating the launch of NeXT, Jobs was involved in everything with no detail being too small. For example, he personally reviewed the invitation list and approved the menu behavior that was typical throughout his business career. He clearly knew Apple was engaged in every possible scheme to avoid taxes. To be fair to the Times, at least they contrasted the tax rate of Apple with that of the Evil Empire (WalMart). Apples federal tax rate was 9.8% while the Evil Empire paid 24%. What is a liberal to do?
7. It wasnt until late in life that he started to make substantial contributions to charitable organizations. Compared to Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, he was never a generous person and chose to live in quite a luxurious life-style. Compare that with a contemporary who also earned huge amounts of money, but lived on less than 1% of it and started a foundation early in his career that directed millions of dollars to charity the evil Michael Milken.
The point of all this is that the Left has always chosen its favored capitalists. Unions anoint business people whom they favor, and our President has been a major practitioner of crony capitalism picking winners and losers. If Steve Jobs (and Apple) gets a pass for whatever reason, then every business in America should be treated the same way.
And we didnt even mention the child and slave labor used to manufacture Apples products.
Or, people buy iPhones because they like them better.
Apple has had very good marketing, but that's not why they succeeded.
It has been shown repeatedly that excellent marketing will not maintain dominance if the product itself is inferior.
Suddenly my Ipad doesn’t seem so cool.
I never had an Apple product and will never get one
If you want to restrict your freedom in what you can do with you information systems, and live on an island isolated from the rest of the world. Then buy Apple.
The market has REPEATEDLY shown that open systems will dominate.
“Or, people buy iPhones because they like them better.”
Or they have the crappy, but trendy iPhone foisted upon them by a metrosexual Chief Technology Officer. Sometimes all it takes is one fanboi in a position of power to override years of positive experience and install thousands of the “cool” devices across the enterprise. This despite a side by side test of Android vs Apple devices by the IT department came down firmly on the Android side.
Through extensive marketing, he convinced people to pay more for his products than comparable products offered by his competitors. On the average, iPhones cost about $100 more than equivalent Android-based phones, yet people buy iPhones because of the marketing.
His finest quality was the ability to recognize the needs of his customers without relying on market research.
I wonder which one it is.
Does the author or poster care to substantiate this slanderous conclusion?
(Jobs was indeed a jerk, especially younger in life. But he was talented and hard working. Not quite a Ty Cobb, but something similar - and at least Jobs mellowed. And no, he wasn't a liver of an extravagant lifestyle.)
Jobs invented multiple new types of products.
The notion that he bamboozled millions of customers into abandoning superior competitive products for Apple’s stuff is just silly.
The iPod, iPhone and iPad (and possibly others) were entirely new types of products. They didn’t exist before he created them.
Competitors have been playing catch-up ever since.
And I don’t own a single Apple product.
Soon to be joined by Dictator for life Chavez. All the riches in the world cannot help either one of them now.
I've been needy and I've been, not rich but financially comfortable, financially comfortable is much better but what I finally realized is that none of that matters ultimately and that the only thing that does matter is a right relationship with the Master, Jesus Christ.
Jobs was brilliant - no one disputes this. He created products that people didn’t understand - like my tag-line says, he hit a target no one else could see (or imagine). I recall how Apple was panned when they announced that the iPad wouldn’t have a USB connector. I think they did all right.
Now, consider; would Jobs have been “great” if he didn’t start Apple? Would you put up with an employee who acted like Jobs did? Would you tolerate, let alone promote such an individual - regardless how many patents he had? Chances are the answer is a resounding “No”.
If you don’t like Apple, that’s fine. Don’t want an Apple product, that’s fine too. But, ask yourself why you don’t like it. Because if you’ve never tried one - yet hate it becuase you’ve been ‘told’ to hate it; don’t jump on a Libtard for being biased without knowing why.
Me, I own precisely 3 Apple products. I own a 8 yr old iPod (still works, it’s in my office and playing my tunes as I type), an iPad - the origional, and the iPhone 4. All of these products work flawlessly. They do what I want them to do, are built very well, and at their time of release were the eptiome of function and build quality.
I don’t own a Mac, but my next PC will be a Mac Mini. I’m tired of doing battle with Windows Vista/7 and am pulling the plug with Win8. I’ve worked in the PC industry for 20 years - I’m tired of dealing with pointless noise; so I’m jumping to OSX.
That was certainly true for me of the iPod and iPhone.
I'm afraid to buy an iPad because if I do, I have a feeling I won't be able to live without it.
The whole Apple shtick always smacked of soft-core fascism to me. For all the reasons listed in the article.
Don't get me wrong, I know very little about jobs and even less about his products. I own a computer (Dell, 5 years old) and a simple cell phone and that's the extent of my electronic inventory.
What I was pointing out is that the author of this piece seems to contradict himself concerning marketing or the lack thereof.
I don't have an opinion about Jobs and his products except that I did read once that Jobs was not a Christian and if that's true, I could comment at length about that.
OK, I’ll bite:
1. If he was such a tax dodger, why did he remain in California?
2. What’s wrong with good marketing?
3. The China component of item pricing is in the 20% range. That means 80% for APPL shareholders and employees and taxes (employees pay tax).
4. No notice layoffs suck, but it’s happened to me and I avoid Silicon Valley gigs because of this attitude.
The author has a few points on liberal bias, sure; but he’s casting too wide a net on this hit piece.
I think the point is that Jobs was everything that Liberals normally hate, and yet, they loved him.. The fact is, that for Liberals, the Myth matters more than the Truth. Just look at Obama.
It’s difficult for me to type the word jobs with an upper case “J”. Hence my non capitalization of his name. Old habits, old mind at work. Plus spell check tells me that jobs is just fine.
I often fail to capitalize obama but that’s intentional.
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