Britain’s Chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks, has hit out at Steve Jobs for creating an ‘I’ generation.
Speaking at an interfaith meeting at which Queen Elizabeth II was present, he criticized the consumer society – and blamed it squarely on Jobs.
“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,” he said.
“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, the consumer society is in fact the most efficient mechanism ever devised for the creation and distribution of unhappiness.”
Instead of hankering after things we don’t have, said Lord Sacks, people would do better to appreciate what they do have, and thank God for it.
One presumes the Queen doesn’t find this too difficult to do: she is one of the richest women in the world, after all. But who knows, maybe even she lies awake at night, seething with resentment about Christy Walton’s collection of gadgets?
It’s not known how many Apple products the Queen has, although she’s widely believed to have an iPad.
In any case, Sacks appears to have had second thoughts about his remarks. He’s now issued a statement to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency news agency saying he never meant to criticize Jobs.
“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,” it reads.
“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.”
Hope that’s all clear.