Visiting Dignitaries

Bono Is Giving the TED Talk to End All TED Talks, Just Kidding It Will Never End

The factivist will see you soon.
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(Photo: Twitter.com/U2tour)

Around this time last February, New York magazine wondered whether the golden age of ideas, sorry idea conferences, would leave “the clusterfuckoisie” without the uplifting epiphanies they paid so dearly to experience firsthand. “Might there be a cap on the number of interesting ideas in the universe?” asked Benjamin Wallace.

But the DAVOS-TED-Summit Series circuit has come back with a rejoinder in the form of rockstar-venture capitalist Bono (still listed as “Bono Rockstar” on Crunchbase, for those of you keeping track at home) who took the stage this afternoon in Long Beach.

We’re not sure how Bono is tied to the theme of TED2013, “The Young. The Wise. The Undiscovered,”–the middle one probably, right?–or what his title of his session “Progress Enigma,” even means. Something about defeating poverty? But who cares when you are dropping jargon like this billionaire.

Bono not only proclaimed the end of his kind: “Exit the rockstar. Enter the evidence-based activist.” He also experimented with meaningful word rearrangements: “The power of people is so much stronger than the people in power.” Really makes the price tag worth it–besides the gift bags and private pools, of course.

Like we said, try as you might with your half-assed #fivewordhashtags, you can’t out-TED a TED talk, people. When the planet is in embers, the only thing left will be cockaroaches and Tony Robbins wondering why we do what we do. On loop.

Follow Nitasha Tiku on Twitter or via RSS. ntiku@observer.com