It depends on whether, like David, you point to liberalism as the threat to 
individual freedom and productivity, or the momentum of conservativism and 
oligarchy to constrain lives.    Some (like Assange) can't stand either one.   
A disruptor seeks a benign sort of chaos when power can shift hands quickly, 
and repeatedly.  The people that are all used up and have limited skills should 
give way to those that do.   Sure they can try to elect someone like Trump, but 
that's where sophisticated "liberal autocracy" must step-up to outmaneuver the 

From: Friam [] On Behalf Of Nick Thompson
Sent: Monday, October 17, 2016 12:18 PM
To: friam <>
Cc: 'Stephen Guerin' <>
Subject: [FRIAM] enablors vs disruptors

Dear Friammers,

A close friend of mine has gone to work in marketing for a Startup Incubator in 
Another City.  I have been perusing the website and I notice frequent use of 
the word "disruptors", as if disruption was a goal in itself.  This puzzles me. 
 I have always thought of technology as "enabling' and have thought of its 
disruptive effects as a kind of collateral damage that needs to be mitigated.  
Now I recognize that one of the properties of a really good technology company 
is the ability to respond quickly to disruption, and to provide solutions and 
open up opportunities for those whose lives are disrupted.  And I realize that 
if I owned a technology company, I might want to produce disruption in order 
that I might supply "enablors" to the disrupted.  But isn't it a case of 
industrial narcissism to MARKET oneself as a disruptor, a kind of "preaching to 
the choir", rather than outreach to potential purchasers of one's technology?  
Or is my thinking "oh so 20th Century."


Nicholas S. Thompson
Emeritus Professor of Psychology and Biology
Clark University

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