Entrepreneurs: The Post-Modern Philanthropists

Next up on The Shit List:  anyone who describes themselves as an “entrepreneur”.  Now, to be clear, I’m not referring to actual entrepreneurs, being someone who has actually owned and operated a real business, nor anyone who describes themselves as “entrepreneurial,” which is basically something that corporate sycophants put on their resumes (typically phrased as “an entrepreneurial spirit”) to demonstrate their ability to “think outside of the box” (provided they didn’t leave their book of horseshit, fashionable catchphrases in the box).

The “entrepreneurs” I’m referring to are the self-important assholes that refer to the term as a vocation.  If you ask someone what they do for a living and they respond, “I’m an entrepreneur,” it usually means they have more time and money than actual inspiration or enterprise, which is to say that they don’t, in fact, do a goddamned thing.  They typically subsist quite comfortably on other people’s money, which allows that they’ll likely never have need of a real job, and haven’t developed any particular inclination for doing any manner of actual work (that being an actual entrepreneur or any otherwise productive member of society would entail).  Just to clarify, that’s not to say that I find it contemptible to live an unproductive and hedonistic lifestyle bankrolled by a family inheritance or some other ill-gotten windfall.  In the interests of full disclosure, under similar circumstances, I wouldn’t have any compunctions, whatsoever, about wallowing blissfully in my own crapulence, but I wouldn’t bother with any pretense at being anything other than a shiftless layabout.

The important distinction here is that this particular lot seem to have enough directionless and hollow ambition that they’re not quite content to go the usual route of the effete who refuse to admit to not doing a goddamned thing, which is to call themselves a philanthropist (or patron), requiring only that they give away some money every once and again and fuck about the rest of the time.

Of course, realistically, it probably has more to do with the corresponding exponential relationship between wealth and the need for attention, with the somewhat recent phenomenon of the rise of the “entrepreneur” as the contemporary celebrity serving that end (or at least that’s what I’m assuming, since, when my wife is watching fucking E! television, it seems I have to hear about a Mark Zuckerberg sighting almost as much as I have to hear about whichever Kardashian trollop or quadruped from the Jersey Shore is taking a gigantic shit on the collective dignity of the human race).

The fact is, if you ask an actual entrepreneur what they do for a living, they’re not going to say they’re an entrepreneur; they’re going to tell what they actually fucking do.  If a person owns a restaurant, they’re going to say they own a fucking restaurant.  If they own a company that makes shit, they’re going to say they make shit.  If they created some useless, “me-too” social media dumping ground, they’re going to say they created Pinterest.  Even a world-class asshole and attention-whore like Donald Trump will probably refer to himself as a real-estate and/or media “mogul”, rather than entrepreneur (although he might, which, so far as I’m concerned, only lends further credence to my position, but that’ll be a discourse for another time).

At any rate, the salient point is that anyone who’s actually created something would define themselves in terms of what they’ve created.  An “entrepreneur” won’t have that same luxury, but when pressed for details will typically produce a list of ventures they’re currently considering, which will invariably include a nightclub, some manner of real estate investment, and a startup which will be described as “It’s like X meets Y (possibly by way of Z)” (take whatever social media, online, or mobile services are popular at the moment and fill in the blanks).  In all fairness, that doesn’t necessarily preclude them from actually following through on some manner of investments, and I wouldn’t withhold credit from someone who actually puts some meaningful thought and effort into an entrepreneurial attempt, but like so many things in this world, 9 times out of 10, it’s essentially bullshit posturing.

And so I condemn so-called “entrepreneurs”, not for being mainly useless fucks, which I can sympathize with, but for the all-too-common sin of pretension…and because somewhere towards the end of their lists, parlaying their way into a reality show often appears.  I don’t have a problem with someone being a useless fuck, so long as they’re not forcing others to watch.

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