At some point, we all realize (or will realize) that we’re working for the bad guys. Most of us, if we don’t work directly for companies involved in vampire capitalism, serve clients that do.
For example, one of my recent contracts involved performance-monitoring software for truck drivers. If a driver went two miles off-route for a cheaper lunch, or drove under the speed limit due to snow, he’d get a call and a reprimand because of a product that I helped build. Except for the few who have the pedigree to get jobs in basic research, most of us are making the world worse every day. We’re vassals to vampire capitalism.
We can get self-congratulatory about it and say “Software is eating the world.” No. False. Corporate capitalism is eating the world. Software is just what it shits out after the world’s been eaten.
To make it clear, I don’t have a moral objection to capitalism per se. I don’t believe that markets are inherently evil. I recognize the social value that private businesses can, in theory, provide. Business is played as a zero-sum game, but it doesn’t have to be that way. However, it’s observably true that circa-2017 corporate/vampire capitalism is, with every step it takes further into all aspects of human life, making the world worse. And now that the id of the business elite– a man who shares an uncanny amount in common with Bay Area tech founders, despite being from a completely different business– has talked its way into the presidency of the United States, it’s making the world dangerous.
When conscientious programmers can’t stomach being the bad guys anymore, where on earth do they go?