“Gates has created a huge blood-buying operation that only cares about money, not about people.”
–AIDS organisation manager, December 2009 (New York Times)
Summary: Undoing some Orwellian deception from the mainstream media and spokespeople of the Gates family/foundation
THE MEDIA is so full of spin that it can really be sickening sometimes. It’s the usual glorification of the rich, pretending that they only cater for the poor and that they save our planet. It is a soothing illusion that keeps society ticking along, but just because something keeps us ticking along does not make it true; one could, for example, believe in fridge-sized diamonds being buried in one’s back yard, but just because it makes that someone feel happy doesn’t make it improper to burst the bubble and call it “nonsense”.
“ClimateProgress.org is openly critical about the latest PR charade from Gates (at TED).”We previously wrote quite a lot about the Gates influence in governments (mostly Bill Gates with his father). We provided a lot of external references, including those which explain how the Gates family uses the foundation to escape taxation, just like Microsoft [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9].
In exchange for these favours (concessions), Gates needs to show the world that he offers something in return, even if it is something imaginary such as access to patents that he invests billions of dollars in. It’s business as usual. Here is Gates hiring another man to whom he will pay more than President Obama is paid. There are already criticisms of it:
At least a quarter of a million to half a million Africans could be provided health care with what is spent on that single salary.
But the stronger criticism comes from those who speak about Gates' suggestion that we should do nothing about global warming for the time being. Who wouldn’t love the idea of just doing nothing and carrying on with lavish lifestyles of consumerism and spendings? Well, ClimateProgress.org is openly critical about the latest PR charade from Gates (at TED). “Bill Gates is wrong about “energy miracles”,” says the headline.
Yes, Bill Gates keeps diminishing the value of aggressive action now, which is just plain suicidal. We need both massive technology deployment now and much more innovation. But the former is the sine qua non for having any chance to preserve a livable climate. Ironically, the former is also the key to the latter, something Gates himself used to argue. Strangely, Gates strongly praises Gore’s book even though its main thrust is directly at odds with Gates’.
So for all those who were led to believe (possibly by the mainstream media) that Gates works towards curbing global warming, more careful attention should be paid to the actual voices that are being suppressed. This is not the first time that we see Gates slammed for his approach to climate change and a few hours ago we posted daily links that include the following:
- Think-tanks take oil money and use it to fund climate deniers
An orchestrated campaign is being waged against climate change science to undermine public acceptance of man-made global warming, environment experts claimed last night.
The attack against scientists supportive of the idea of man-made climate change has grown in ferocity since the leak of thousands of documents on the subject from the University of East Anglia (UEA) on the eve of the Copenhagen climate summit last December.
Free-market, anti-climate change think-tanks such as the Atlas Economic Research Foundation in the US and the International Policy Network in the UK have received grants totalling hundreds of thousands of pounds from the multinational energy company ExxonMobil. Both organisations have funded international seminars pulling together climate change deniers from across the globe.
- Oil Money Funds Climate Deniers and Attacks on Climate Scientists
The multinational energy company ExxonMobil has given hundreds of thousands of British pounds in grants to free-market, anti-climate change think-tanks to wage a coordinated, orchestrated campaign against climate change science, and undermine public acceptance of the idea that global warming has a man-made component.
- Oil-Funded Gov Joins with Oil-Funded Front Group to Appeal Greenhouse Gas Regs
Although it seems a bit like a dog-bites-man story, the New York Times reported that Texas Governor and 2012 presidential aspirant Rick Perry (R-TX) has joined with the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) in challenging the Environmental Protection Agency’s decision to regulate carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas. As the Center for Media and Democracy has documented on our SourceWatch site, CEI has been well-funded by Exxon and other oil companies, and is one of the main U.S. corporate front groups fighting efforts to address global warming and regulate the industry that feeds it funding. But, the courts are now stacked in Perry’s favor, as noted below.
- The “AB 32 Implementation Group”: A Wolf in Green Clothing
Since then, a coalition with the helpful-sounding name the “AB 32 Implementation Group” has appeared, claiming to represent green businesses and a broad section of California interests focused on global warming regulations. The Implementation Group’s Web site features photos of white clouds and flowers, and the organization is being managed by a big public relations firm, Woodward & McDowell. In truth, the Group actually represents 22 of California’s biggest carbon polluters (as ranked by the California Air Resources Board), and, according to environmentalists and lawmakers, is engaged in a steady campaign to undermine the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006.
- Business group loses ‘green’ members in global-warming fight
An organization representing some of California’s biggest carbon polluters is working to alter the state’s global warming law, while claiming to represent several “green” environmental companies that have since left the coalition after learning of its recent actions.
The coalition, calling itself the AB 32 Implementation Group, says it represents a broad section of California interests focused on global warming regulations. The group, which is being managed by a large public relations firm, Woodward & McDowell, features photographs of white clouds and a field of flowers on its Web site.
As the above shows (collected for this one day alone), there is a lot of AstroTurfing going on to deny the obvious.
Question of Tax (Not Carbon Tax)
Now, returning to the issue of tax (which the Gates family mostly evades using its co-called ‘charitable foundation’), a former employee of Bill Gates has just accused Gates of being behind the representative who is willing to give Microsoft a $100 million annual tax cut. He also sort of accuses the Seattle Times of a conspiracy of silence (the Seattle Times constantly glorifies the Gates Foundation and says nothing about tax evasion).
In the midst of Washington State’s brief biennial legislative session to address the state’s pending insolvency from a $2.8 billion budget deficit, you might think that an estimated $1.27 billion tax dodge by Microsoft, the state’s most profitable company, and a proposed bill by Bill Gates’ own representative which would grant Microsoft a $100 million annual tax cut and likely amnesty from it’s unpaid taxes would warrant coverage in the state’s most successful newspaper, The Seattle Times.
I don’t understand why the paper won’t cover the issue though the Times has had a history of taking stances on the estate tax at odds with our community’s traditional centrist values. In 2000, the paper endorsed George Bush for President. This week, the paper complained that the Legislature’s proposed sales tax increase was enough to push the author to evade the sales tax by driving south to Oregon.
I know Seattle journalism is under strain. The failure of the print edition of the PI recently has hurt the city. But, it’s up to journalists to make their work relevant to readers. In choosing so far not to cover this issue, the Seattle Times is failing all of us. If you don’t cover issues that materially affect events in our region, then perhaps your business deserves to struggle financially.
Gates and Microsoft do not seem to care if their home state goes bankrupt, as long as they get to keep their own money and power.
As long as Washington State doesn’t go broke before 2017, we’ll eventually catch up to the damage done by HB3176. But, HB3176 may throw away a lot of cash (Microsoft’s tax debt) up front that the state could benefit from today.
Following up on yesterday’s post on Microsoft’s $100 million tax cut and potential tax amnesty, I’ve done a brief analysis of the impact of HB3176′s proposed changes to the royalty tax. Based on this analysis, the current royalty tax alone will generate more revenue for the state until 2017 when the combined increased revenue sources from HB3176 will catch up with the loss of the domicile-based royalty tax.
When even employees of Microsoft turn into its very worst enemies (as in the case of Reifman, who calls for the prosecution of Gates, Ballmer and others), then it’s clear that something is wrong. But Microsoft employees are not allowed to talk about it, sometimes even after they leave. █
“In Hanson and Edstrom’s view of the world, Gates should be Microsoft’s spokesman. Microsoft’s cofounder, Paul Allen, had resigned in 1983 after battling Hodgkin’s disease, and Gates fit the consummate developer image. Hanson sent around a gag order—no talking to the media. This was, to say the least, not a popular decision with Microsoft’s developers.”
–Barbarians Led by Bill Gates, a book composed
by the daughter of Microsoft’s PR mogul