When he was back on the ground after his – ahem – epic space flight of all of ten minutes, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos had the crass temerity to thank Amazon customers and staff for paying for his Flying Penis – er — Blue Origin space rocket.
It was so generous of Bezos to acknowledge the millions of people who made him his fortune, and the Amazon warehouse workers and drivers who toil on a pittance to load pallets and dispatch parcels.
But his flittering away billions on a personal vanity project, and then rub it in the faces of the little people who made him, was astonishing.
Let’s be charitable and just say he lacks self-awareness. As an example of conspicuous consumption, Bezos’s phallic thimble, and his determination to outdo fellow billionaire weirdos Richard Branson and Elon Musk, the Flying Penis is hard to beat.
Indeed, for all the claims of this trio about furthering mankind’s knowledge, proving the way for space tourism, and highlighting the know-how of the private sector, the space race between these three, possibly on-the-spectrum, squillionaires comes down to one simple thing.
A Biggest Dick contest. And we’re not talking about the size of their appendages.
But when it comes to adding insult to injury, it seems Bezos’s ‘thanks’ didn’t go far enough.
A Morning Double Shot reader who authors books sold on US Amazon tells us of a specific injury to non-American authors that adds a further dimension of unpleasantness to Bezos’s gratuitous and thoughtless insult.
He points out he hasn’t seen a cent of his modest Amazon proceeds. If he were a Septic, Amazon would pay him monthly by direct credit. But his being a foreigner, they won’t pay until the amount reaches a threshold figure in the hundreds of dollars, and only then by cheque. ‘My books are unlikely to generate sufficient volume, so Jeff enjoys weightlessness partly from me and many others whose bank accounts could do with a little more weight’, he writes.
Scrabbling authors’ rightful earnings Lost in Space, as it were.
Terry Barnes edits our daily newsletter, the Morning Double Shot. You can sign up for your Morning Double Shot of news and comment here.
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