Third Base [Scott Galloway]

Dated Dec 13, 2019; last modified on Thu, 02 Sep 2021

Third Base

Not recognizing your blessings feeds into the dark side of capitalism and meritocracy: success is a choice, and that those who haven’t achieved success are not unlucky, but unworthy.

I’m relatively lucky. I don’t know how much of the techie hubris that I bear. I have unresolved feelings about meritocracy and fairness. Race is usually used as a proxy for bridging the gap, e.g. affirmative action at colleges. But who is affirmative action better suited for - a rich black kid or a poor white kid? I’m in the camp that believes wealth is a bigger divider than race.

1st Base: parents immigrating into the US. More $$$ for entrepreneurs, freedom to challenge institutions, not going bankrupt if company fails.

Um, but I’ve also heard the argument that Nordic countries are forgiving to entrepreneurs given their large social benefits net, e.g. universal health care. Maybe Scott means that the company goes bankrupt but the individual is protected, but isn’t that standard everywhere?

2nd Base: born a white heterosexual male at the right time. Dow Jones increased 445% on average during prime working years. Scott raised +$100m for his startups in the 90s in SF.

Scott had a pie chart from Richard Kerby breaking down VC diversity numbers:

By Race By Gender By Race & Gender
White - 74% Male - 89% White Male - 67%
Asian - 23% Female - 11% Asian Male - 19%
Black - 2% White Female - 7%
Latino - 1% Asian Female - 4%
Black Male - 2%
Hispanic Male - 1%

​I was skeptical of VC firms for PoC, but this chart is alarming. I wonder how skewed the numbers would be if viewed by parental income. How would one even get such data?

3rd Base: an elite education. For the class of 2013, Dartmouth, Princeton, Yale, Penn, and Brown had more students from the top 1% of the income scale than the bottom 60%.

​Funny that the statistic is from 2013. Colleges now flaunt how much they’re getting FLI students.


  1. Third Base. Scott Galloway. . Dec 13, 2019.