British Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks criticized the late Steve Jobs, co-founder of
Apple, for helping to create a selfish, consumerist society, The Telegraph
At an interfaith reception last week Sacks explained,
“The consumer society was laid down by the late Steve Jobs coming down the
mountain with two tablets, iPad 1 and iPad 2, and the result is that we now have
a culture of iPod, iPhone, iTunes, i, i, i.”
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The chief rabbi also argued
advertising and consumerism leave their customers discontented.
“If in a
consumer society, through all the advertising and subtly seductive approaches to
it, you’ve got an iPhone but you haven’t got a fourth generation one,” he said.
“The consumer society is in fact the most efficient mechanism ever devised for
the creation and distribution of unhappiness.”
Saying “the world of
faith” is the answer to these problems, Sacks called for cooperation between
Jews and Christians.
Sachs clarified in a statement Monday that he meant no criticism of Steve Jobs or Apple.
The chief rabbi "meant no criticism of either Steve Jobs personally or
the contribution Apple has made to the development of technology in
the 21st century," Sach's director of communications and programming
said in a statement to JPost.com. "He admires both and indeed uses an
iPhone and an iPad on a daily basis."
"The chief rabbi was simply pointing out the potential dangers of consumerism when taken too far," the statement added.