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Splitsville for Thiel and Kasparov?

The tech zillionaire and the chess champion were always a bit of an odd couple, and I’ve felt for awhile that it was just as well that they never finished that book they were talking about.

But given that each of them has taken a second career in political activism, I can’t imagine that they’re close friends after this:

Kasparov, July 2015:

As for Trump, the less said the better. He said he could be Putin’s pal if elected, showing he has no clue about democracy or Putin — and probably not anything else. It’s worth pointing out that Trump and Bernie Sanders are both getting substantial attention from the media and voters despite having zero chance of winning a primary . . .

Kasparov, April 2016:

Trump sells the myth of American success instead of the real thing. . . . It’s tempting to rally behind him-but we should resist. Because the New York values Trump represents are the very worst kind. . . . He may have business experience, but unless the United States plans on going bankrupt, it’s experience we don’t need.

May 2016:

Thiel, co-founder of PayPal and Palantir and a director at Facebook, is now a Trump delegate in San Francisco, according to a Monday filing.

Kasparov I can understand. He hates Putin, Trump likes Putin, it’s that simple.

Thiel I can understand too. He hasn’t been in the news for awhile and probably misses the headlines. And, unlike his onetime coauthor, he can’t get publicity whenever he wants just by playing a blitz tournament.

12 Comments

  1. AJG says:

    Cutting down on the clickbait titles? You Won’t BELIEVE How Trump Broke Up This Celebrity Couple!

  2. numeric says:

    Kasparov I can understand. He hates Putin, Trump likes Putin, it’s that simple.

    Another example of balance theory (see http://andrewgelman.com/2016/05/17/fraac-scott-adams/ under comments by numeric). I suspect there is a deep psychology process why Andrew keeps dissing social psychologists–he’s really one in his secret identity (secret life, alter ego, what have you).

  3. Steve Sailer says:

    Thiel has new celebrity friends, like Hulk Hogan.

    • Andrew says:

      Steve:

      The Kasparov-Thiel connection is interesting. Kasparov has a motivation to cultivate rich friends to get financing for his political projects; also Kasparov is, understandably, strongly anti-communist and I could imagine this corresponding to respect for rich guys like Thiel who made their money from business rather than government connections. Thiel maybe saw Kasparov as cool and also may have been supportive of his political activities. Not so much anymore, I guess. I could imagine Thiel and Kasparov liking each other, as they’re both competitive and highly successful. If they ever think about each other’s current political views, perhaps each thinks the other is naive: Thiel could see Kasparov as naive for not understanding that Donald Trump is the best current route toward lower taxes and less government, Kasparov could think Thiel as naive for thinking that authoritarian politicians such as Trump or Putin are easily manipulable. But I’ll never know what they think of each other, I guess.

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