By SOMINI SENGUPTA and ERIC LIPTON
Published: May 8, 2013
“Move fast and break things” has been the motto at Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook, embodying the Silicon Valley ethos of unapologetically finding new ways to solve old problems. His latest foray into politics in Washington, however, might be characterized as “Move fast, play hardball and be prepared for blowback.”
Fwd.Us, the new nonprofit advocacy group created by Mr. Zuckerberg and several technology executives and investors to push for an overhaul of immigration law, has bankrolled television ads endorsing the conservative stands taken by three lawmakers, prompting an outcry from liberal groups and a call to withhold advertisements from Facebook.
The liberal attacks on Zuckerberg are pretty boring:
... Vinod Khosla, a venture capitalist who finances some of the same clean energy companies as Mr. Doerr’s firm and who was once a major partner at Mr. Doerr’s investment firm, said on Twitter over the weekend: “Will Fwd.us prostitute climate destruction & other values to get a few engineers hired & get immigration reform?” ...
But the point is this: You know how, these days, the worst thing you can hold on a political issue currently up for consideration is a "divisive opinion"? There is nothing worse in 2013 than a divisive individual, like you controversial creeps who aren't all on board with the Gang of Eight.
But, now, Mark Zuckerberg is on board with the Gang of Eight, and he is, by nature, divisive and controversial, thus spreading his contagion of divisiveness via guilt by association to the immigration "reformers."
Still, others say the ads signal a calculated pragmatism. Fwd.Us is led by experienced political operatives, including Joe Lockhart, a former Clinton Administration official, and Rob Jesmer, a former Republican Senate political adviser. One executive involved in the effort said the advertisements were vetted with executives backing it — and that the executives realized before they were shown that they might alienate certain liberal audiences....
“We did not just fall off the turnip truck,” the executive said.
This could get fun.
By the way, did I ever mention the Spring iSteve fundraising drive is going on?
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