One could have predicted Mr. Thiel's affinity for Mr. Trump by reading his 2014 book, "Zero to One," in which he offers three prongs of his philosophy:
1) It is better to risk boldness than triviality.
2) A bad plan is better than no plan.
3) Sales matter just as much as product.
How could a gay man back someone who will probably nominate Supreme Court justices inclined to limit rights for gays and women? How could a futurist support a cave man who champions fossil fuels, puts profits over environmental protection and insists that we can turn back the clock on the effects of globalization on American workers?
"There are reduced expectations for the younger generation, and this is the first time this has happened in American history," Mr. Thiel says. "Even if there are aspects of Trump that are retro and that seem to be going back to the past, I think a lot of people want to go back to a past that was futuristic — 'The Jetsons,' 'Star Trek.' They're dated but futuristic."