The Flinchum File
Thoughtful Economic Analysis and Existential Opinions



I will not say . . . I told you so.
I will not say . . . I told you so.
I will not say . . . I told you so.

We’ve all seen those new home gadgets from Amazon, called Alexa, which allows the homeowner to ask questions, both big and little, as well buy things conveniently.  Google has a similar gadget.  They just sit on your counter, waiting for instructions.  Of course, it is listening to everything being said.

In fairness, it really is convenient to sit on the sofa and say “Alexa, please order a 46-pack of Starbucks Veranda k-cup pods.”  Like magic, it will show up at my door two days later.  Amazon wants to free me from the awful inconvenience of sitting down at my computer and typing.  For that minor convenience, I have to surrender the privacy of my conversations.

Friday, it was learned that, in at least one instance, the gadget recorded a conversation between a husband & wife, before sending a recorded copy of that conversation to a third-party in the husband’s contact list.  How embarrassing!?!

The continuing flow of increased conveniences comes at the cost of decreased privacy.  CNBC star Jim Cramer labelled naysayers as “privacy fanatics,” which is a label I proudly wear.

I thought everybody in high school was forced to read George Orwell’s iconic book 1984, but I guess not.  If he was still alive, he would be saying . . . I TOLD YOU SO!

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