Jon Stewart told Bezos his vision for future was a ‘recipe for revolution’ – and Obama agreed

‘And then you hear Obama from across the couch go, ‘I agree with Jon’”

Bevan Hurley
Tuesday 25 January 2022 18:55 GMT
Comments
Jon Stewart told Bezos his vision for future of work was a 'recipe for revolution'

Jon Stewart says he warned Jeff Bezos during a private White House dinner that his vision of the future of work was a “recipe for revolution”.

Recalling the encounter on the podcast The Problem with Jon Stewart, the comedian said he met Mr Bezos when they were guests of then-president Barack Obama and his wife Michelle.

The Amazon founder had been describing a future economy where workers’ primary task was to deliver goods and services to “billionaires”, Mr Stewart claimed.

The former Daily Show host said he tried to explain that many workers wanted to feel as if they were making meaningful contributions, and that “society is not just about running errands for people that have more than you”.

“I think he views everybody as like a part of a fulfilment centre,” Mr Stewart said.

“And so I said, ‘I think that’s a recipe for revolution.’

“And then, like, kind of a hush falls over. And then you hear Obama from across the couch go, ‘I agree with Jon.’”

Jeff Bezos is worth an estimated $168.5 billion
Jeff Bezos is worth an estimated $168.5 billion (Getty Images,)

Also present at the dinner, which took place more than five years ago, were billionaire Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban and a venture capitalist who was developing Oculus virtual reality headsets.

Mr Bezos is the world’s second richest man with an estimated net wealth of $168.5bn even after the recent stockmarket pullback.

He saw his wealth soar along with Amazon’s shared price during the Covid pandemic as many relied on deliveries for grocery and household items.

Amazon has faced criticism over “gruelling” worker conditions, with delivery workers claiming last year they were forced to urinate in bottles during 14 hour shifts.

Employees have gone on strike and attempted to unionise in Alabama to force the company to provide better pay and conditions.

In December, the girlfriend of an Amazon worker who died when a tornado struck a company warehouse in Illinois claimed he was told to stay remain at work in spite of safety warnings.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in