The Good Billionaire: Classic Rich Guy

This is Section A of IWNSPTB XI: The Good Billionaire.

Bill Gates has a net worth of 122 billion dollars.

Gates is lauded for his genius and generosity. The New York Times recently called him The Most Interesting Man in the World. Upon closer inspection, one will discover that Bill Gates is actually a threat to democracy, an obstacle to sustainable solutions, and cares far more about return on investments than any public good.

(Source: MintPressNews)

There are myriad angles to examine this from; the next few sections are relatively brief and rapid-fire. Bear with me, before instinctively adopting the anti-anti-vaxxer stance and crying conspiracy theory. Neither should we dismiss all considerations of conspiracy by bundling it with the most ridiculous; much like this piece in Bloomberg.

Here are my primary sources, open to interrogation, quoted and paraphrased throughout, with my own emphasis here and there:

Through the power of monopoly, Microsoft established itself as a software empire. This made Gates the richest man in the world. In the past, Gates had a very poor public image, known for dodging questions on and defending his ruthless business practices. Gates was also generally despised in the software community. Yet, the Corbett Report says, “[O]nce reviled for the massive wealth and the monopolistic power […], Gates is now hailed as a visionary who is leveraging that wealth and power for the greater good of humanity.”

(Source: The Corbett Report)

Besides the bought and paid-for spin, other records of Gates’ personality refer to his frequent “abrasive, childish rants” and “childlike temper tantrums”. Gates is regarded as being “not very good at listening,” and is said to hold “many of the patronizing assumptions about developing countries and how best to organize the world” that you would expect from a rich American tech geek. While running Microsoft, he was known to slam his fist on the desk while saying, “We’ve got to crush” any other vendor that dared sell software. Gates attacked the wealth tax proposed by presidential candidates Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. Neither won the party’s nomination but Gates joked about having to pay 100 billion dollars in taxes; paying that amount would leave him with 22 billion dollars. Gates golfs with Bill Clinton, dines with Newt Gingrich and hosts Al Gore at Redmond, once bragging: “Of course, I have as much power as the president has.” Rob Larson refers to Gates as “a transparently evasive and condescending ruling-class dick.” Today, the man once associated with “ruthless, predatory monopolistic conduct” has rebranded his name through the power of philanthropy and public relations.

Gates is always on hand to overlook systemic inequality and excuse free-market-induced poverty. Or to lecture the masses on green living and the need to stay indoors while he buys private jet companies. In the United States, Gates’ homeland, 35 million go hungry and over 500 thousand are homeless, while Gates himself owns the most farmland:

As Larson notes, Gates’ new positive image and efforts are “a fig leaf for ruling-class dominance.”

The next section is Philantrocapitalism.

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