For decades, Finland's economy was built on two pillars — Nokia and paper manufacturing. Steve Jobs and his evil company killed off both of them!

For decades, Finland’s economy was built on two pillars — Nokia and paper manufacturing. Given that Apple has played a leading role in killing both industries — iPhone displaced Nokia and iPad helped to greatly reduce paper demand — it is perhaps unsurprising Steve Jobs et al are somewhat less than loved there.

Earlier this year, Finnish Prime Minister Alexander Stubb made the bold claim that, “Steve Jobs took our jobs.” As anyone in an advanced economy, no one owns job — we just hold the position until someone younger, smarter and cheaper comes along to fill it.

And, honestly, no matter what you do, there is always someone younger, smarter and cheaper.

Regardless, Prime Minister hasn’t worn out Apple or Steve Jobs as foils for Finland’s problems.

“We have two industrial problems, champions that went down in Finland,” he noted today. “One was Nokia and the ICT sector and the other was forest and the paper industry.”

Finland, Finland, Finland.
The country where I want to be,
Pony trekking or camping,
Or just watching TV,
Finland, Finland, Finland.
It’s the country for me — Contractual Obligation Album, Monty Python

“Usually what happens is that when you have dire times you get a lot of innovation and I think from the public sector our job is to create the platform for it,” Stubb said.

And, that is a fairly reasonable expectation, one that is shared by politicians in late-stage capitalist economies near and far.

Steve Jobs Giveth and Taketh Away

However, as pointed out by TechCrunch, Nokia isn’t just a victim. For example, while Microsoft bought and largely shutdown their handset design, manufacturing and sales organization, Nokia as a technology licensing firm still collects millions annually, $650 million in 2013 alone.

Good work if you can get it.

Lastly, the idea that the iPad killed the paper business is perhaps silly at best — paper manufacturing has been shrinking for decades. While the iPad makes for a convenient symbol of the largely paperless mobile communication age, it was the generic internet that has done the most to kill off paper (and save our forests).

Regardless, politicians like Stubbs love a good villain and Apple + Steve Jobs are the world’s best-loved villains…

What’s your take?

Via: TechCrunch