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First, I don't think this link proves that Google is political, because that link is about their employees. That link just greatly increases the chances that Google's employees are political, in this case democratic.

Second, I think I'm using the word political here to talk about ideological interests, rather than self-interested ones.

But let me presume that link was about the actual company donating to the democrats. Setting aside the issue of Thiel, because I don't know much about him, I think its harder to classify businesses as 'fundamentally political' because of their more singular motive of profit. Businesses, at least those on a massive scale like Google, have a clear goal in mind when donating to candidates: procuring legislation in favor of themselves. Thus, their choice doesn't seem 'political' because it can be boiled down to self-interest. If they were giving lots of money to democrats, it could probably be explained by the democrats being more easily 'bought' on something Google wanted. I wouldn't say that an oil company is 'political' for giving money to republicans instead of environmentally conscious democrats--that's just self-interest to me.

Meanwhile, I think a person donating is much more likely to be doing so because of ideological reasons. However, the greater a person's stake in the outcome of legislation, the more likely their motive is not 'political'. For example, if billionaires don't want a crackdown on tax havens, its probably because of self-interest rather than some ideological commitment that taxation is unjust. Given this, Thiel's donation record alone could just be evidence of self-interest. However, as per the posts around this discussion, frequent interviews with the National Review, Cato, etc., plus the fact that I think its much more probable that individuals are political than companies, makes me think that the Google/Thiel comparison is inaccurate.




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