The first rule of Silicon Valley venture capital is never insult a startup. Founders are always killing it, disrupting the world or just plain raising the roof.

If a startup is fizzling, shuttering or caught scamming? The socially acceptable response is total silence.

Everyone knows that. Except Jason Palmer.

The startup in question was AltSchool, a Mark Zuckerberg-backed project to turn school into a startup experience. It had just announced it was pivoting out of existence after raising US$174 million ($271 million).

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Palmer is in this field: He is a venture capitalist in Washington, D.C., focused on education technology. On

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