17 Jul 2010


All Posts 6 Comments

I haven’t been blogging because yesterday and today I was at the Hilton in downtown Nashville for this. I’ll give a postgame show next week; I have to crash right now.

In the meantime, does anyone know if Bill Gates gave to one-world type causes before Microsoft got hit with the antitrust suit? I.e., is it possible that Bill Gates doesn’t actually support the stuff the Bill Gates Foundation funds, but the deal was he could keep his company if he played ball like the other billionaires?

6 Responses to “Crashing”

  1. Randy_Bobandy says:

    According to wikipedia,

    “The U.S. government’s interest in Microsoft’s affairs had begun in 1991 with an inquiry by the Federal Trade Commission over whether Microsoft was abusing its monopoly on the PC operating system market. The commissioners deadlocked with a 2-2 vote in 1993 and closed the investigation, but the Department of Justice opened its own investigation on August 21 of that year, resulting in a settlement on July 15, 1994 in which Microsoft consented not to tie other Microsoft products to the sale of Windows but remained free to integrate additional features into the operating system.”

    and according to the Gates Foundation website “DECEMBER 1994 | Bill and Melinda consolidate their giving to address two main issues—global health and community needs in the Pacific Northwest—and form the William H. Gates Foundation with an initial stock gift of $94 million. William H. Gates Sr, manages the new foundation.”

    that seems a little damning to bill gates.

  2. Alex Tabarrok says:

    Jan 1, 1994 was the key date in my view.

  3. S.M. Oliva says:

    I don’t think antitrust regulators think that way. Elected officials, maybe, but not the decision-makers at FTC and DOJ. I believe the Microsoft case was driven by a simple fear that the technology sector would render antitrust obsolete – a fear that still drives the antitrust system.

  4. Anon73 says:

    The juxtaposition of the dates seems pretty suspicious so I’d guess it was more of a calculated move on the part of Gates as opposed to a conspiracy.

    You should stand outside of Microsoft headquarters will a bull horn and give a lecture on how IP is invalid. 🙂

  5. Jacques Fournier says:

    Bill gave a talk at the 2008 Bohemian Grove Encampment, and he was the least interesting speaker there. I think that if Nassim Nicholas Taleb met him, he would say “If You’re So Rich, Why Aren’t You So Smart”.

  6. TokyoTom says:

    Bob, it seems like Bill Gates is quite active in the Foundation:

    He has certainly taken a recent prominent interest in energy/climate issues:

    Is that what bothers you?

    I would note that 1994 was 16 years ago, and Microsoft was plenty busy – and it looks like the new foundation was not a PR move before the settlement. The Foundation has received billions from Buffett in the form of matching donations.

    What’s your point? Surely this is a better use of his money than just giving it to the government in taxes?