Millionaire Apologizes for Comparing Progressives to Nazis, Says His Watch Is Worth a '6-Pack of Rolexes'

Perhaps a new idea for Costco? 
Photo Illustration from @Darth

Legendary Silicon Valley venture capitalist Tom Perkins appeared on Bloomberg TV this evening to apologize for writing a letter to The Wall Street Journal comparing progressives to the Nazis and America's richest 1 percent to persecuted German Jews. In the process, he may have delivered the greatest brag about a watch that the Hip Hop world somehow never thought of. 

Perkins said he particularly regretted his letter's comparison of Occupiers and progressives to Kristallnacht, the 1938 wave of riots in which Germans destroyed Jewish shops and 30,000 Jews were carted off to concentration camps. He explained that he had been reminded of the historic pogroms during the recent protests over the wealth inequality in San Francisco, in which protesters broke the windows of a Wells Fargo Bank and luxury car dealerships. 

“I saw that and remembered that the police stood by frozen," he said. "And thought, well, this is how Kristallnacht began. So that word was in my mind."

Perkins says he is certainly not sorry, however, about he letter's overall message that the rich are being unfairly attacked and are "threatened as a class" by higher taxes. “To demonize the job creators, to demonize the rich who spend and buy things is crazy," he said. 

To illustrate said demonization, he recalled a recent news report that questioned why someone would spend money on a Rolex. At which point, he showed off his own watch, a Richard Mille, and said, in a moment immediately inscribed into Internet lore: "I could buy a 6-pack of Rolexes for this.”

When Bloomberg TV's Emily Chang brought up the watch later in the interview, Perkins looked a bit taken aback. “That was naughty. That was off the air. It was a gift, though.” But give him points for quick math. A price check on Google suggests that his time piece could, theoretically, buy about six Rolexes. (Depending on the model, of course).  

Perkins also informed Bloomberg's viewers that he is a "literal knight of the Kingdom of Norway," which is also accurate. 

Tom Perkins and TV. This could be the beginning of something beautiful. 

Presented by

Jordan Weissmann is a senior associate editor at The Atlantic.

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus


How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well.


Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.


The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.


Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.


Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses


Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

More in Business

Just In