GUS RUELAS / Reuters

Peter Thiel, partner of Founders Fund, takes part in a panel discussion titled When Past Performance Is a Guide: Using History to Make Sense of the Post-Crisis World at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California May 1, 2013.

But his secret funding of the privacy lawsuit of Hulk Hogan, the former pro wrestler, against Gawker may help accelerate it.

John D. Rockefeller and Andrew Carnegie, plutocrats of the Gilded Age, used their money against their enemies, to be sure, enemies that included newspapers and magazines that disagreed with them for all sorts of reasons.

In this way, Thiel epitomizes why polls show people losing trust in Silicon Valley.

Let s not pretend that the website did it as part of a great journalistic mission.

Gawker did it to lure eyes to its website while smugly saying the First Amendment sheltered it.

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