07.31.10 Apple & the Clintons

Surely you’ve heard the hoopla in the past couple of weeks about the horribly flawed Apple iPhone 4.  Even if you don’t care about iPhones, the media frenzy caught the corner of your eye, leaving you with the impression of a failed product.

In fact, the entire thing was a tempest in a teapot: if you happened to hold the iPhone just so, you might have problems with signal strength.  And, if you put a little piece of tape on a particular spot or (gasp!) put the iPhone in a case,  the problem vanishes (and who would want to carry a $400 electronic toy without a case?!).

Much ado about (nearly) nothing.  A scandal without (much of a) cause. And created almost wholly by Steve Jobs’ and Apple’s arrogance.

If Jobs hadn’t been so damn obnoxious (“Well, then don’t hold the phone that way, you idiots!” [not an exact quote]) and if Apple had acknowledged the problem and offered a solution when the story first broke, the problem would have vanished before it got out of hand.

Where do the Clintons come in?  Well, do you remember a little scandal called “Whitewater?”  That little scandal, which consumed the entire two terms of the Clinton administration, culminated in public knowledge of that spot on Monica Lewinsky’s dress (not to mention a certain cigar).

That was a scandal without an originating crime. If the arrogant Clintons had simply opened their books to the media in 2003, if they had stopped stonewalling and dragging things out, POOF, the scandal would have evaporated long before we found out about the president’s sex life.

Ahhh, that old Icarus story.  Hubris kills.  Thinking you are smarter and better than everyone else ends up hurting you.  And when you are in a position of power, that also means you bring everyone else down with you.

Hubris is my least favorite human trait, because it contributes nothing good, not even to the arrogant prick himself.

The Clintons never learned (cf., Bill’s racist behavior during the crucial 2008 South Carolina primary).  Will Apple?

©2010 Keith Berner

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