Each month, “Lochhead on Different” episodes explore the need to differentiate people, products, and services in a world that encourages a lot of imitation. Christopher Lochhead is a best-selling author, top podcaster, and former tech-industry CMO. Today, Christopher and Bob discuss some headlines roiling the U.S. and the world, including the situation at OpenAI and the ongoing Middle East conflict, finding some intriguing intersections with Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives.
Episode 31 | Current Affairs Unmasked
Note: this episode contains explicit language.
The Big Themes
- DEI and MLK: Christopher surveys the contemporary DEI landscape, expressing concerns about its focus on groupism rather than individual merit, citing instances of what he perceives as discrimination against certain groups. He draws a sharp contrast between the principles of DEI and the inclusive dream articulated by Martin Luther King, Jr.
- The Middle East: Hypocrisy within academia regarding the Middle East is highlighted, with a close look at Claudine Gay’s recent appearance before Congress. The Middle East discussion serves as a microcosm reflecting broader concerns about ideological extremism, free speech, and the need for nuanced conversations.
- OpenAI Turmoil: Christopher expresses skepticism and concern about the decision-makers at OpenAI, characterizing them as “DEI elitists” with questionable values and ethics. Despite acknowledging the need for government regulation, oversight, and transparency in AI development, he opposes the notion of elitist individuals having undue influence. The board’s embrace of effective altruism is tied to DEI.
The Big Quote: “Here’s the prediction: In 2024, we will see what is required now, which is there will be the emergence of courageous CEOs who say, we are suspending all DEI efforts in our company. And we’re going to do a review of them. And what we’re going to try to re-align around is equality for all . . .”