In our day, we can’t quite see anything wrong with monopoly. We’re certain that our tech giants achieved their dominance fairly and squarely through the free market, by dint of technical genius. To conjure this image of meritocratic triumph requires overlooking several pungent truths about the nature of these new monopolies. Their dominance is less than pure. They owe their dominance to innovation, but also to tax avoidance.
Amazon today announced that its largest wind farm yet--Amazon Wind Farm Texas--is now up and running, adding more than 1,000,000 MWh of clean energy to the grid each year. Amazon has launched 18 wind and solar projects across the U.S., with over 35 more to come. Together, these projects will generate enough clean energy to power over 330,000 homes annually.
Amazon recently sparked a competitive frenzy among U.S. cities when the Seattle-based company announced its search for a second corporate headquarters (“HQ2”) in North America. Thursday is the deadline for interested cities to submit their bids. Approximately 50,000 jobs and billions of dollars worth of economic activity hang in the balance.
The funding is a part of the White House’s new initiative to boost STEM and computer science education in grades K-12, which the administration announced on Monday. The initiative will combine the $300 million from the private sector with at least another $200 million from the Department of Education. The money will be spent on computer science curriculums around the country starting in the 2018 fiscal year.
Amazon's vice president for global innovation policy and communications, Paul Misener, gave the keynote speech at Retail Week's tech conference in London this week, telling the assembled retailers what they can learn from the ecommerce giant's growth.
"Amazon is a microscopic portion of global consumption today, so ultimately I think it has more room to grow before it invites regulatory overview," Palihapitiya said. "On the other hand, Facebook and Google effectively are surveillance states. And they have so much personal, private information about so many citizens of so many countries."