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The Most Hated Man In The World. . .Again

April 29, 2020

In 1983 Ronald Reagan called the Soviet Union the evil empire.

A few years earlier in 1977 Star Wars introduced us to Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Princess Leia and Darth Vader. The rebels vs the Empire; the evil empire.

A couple of years before that, in 1975 in New Mexico, a small software company was founded by a college dropout named Bill Gates. The company, Microsoft would also become known as the evil empire. Mostly by the those who were crushed by the company that moved to Redmond and became the biggest software juggernaut in history.

If Microsoft was the evil empire, Bill Gates, was Darth Vader. I joined Microsoft in 1992. I left WordPerfect Corporation in Orem Utah and moved to Washington. A few years later, WordPerfect died. The owners did manage to find someone to buy them out, but the company was finished. They were bought by another Utah company, Novell. And not many years after that Microsoft crushed Novell as well.

Microsoft is not well liked in Utah. Sentiments are improved today, but over the years, many IT and software engineers lost their jobs to the evil empire.

Bill Gates was considered an evil person by many in Utah and elsewhere. Microsoft was viewed as a bully, and Gates the chief bully. Steve Jobs who only met Gates once described Microsoft products as “Just not very good.”

Bill Gates, is not an evil man from what I can see. I’ve never met him personally. But, he simply ruthlessly ran the world’s largest software company in a time when ruthlessness was how all software companies were run.

He, of course became insanely wealthy. Wealth without equal in the world. What do you do with all that money? Do you buy the world’s most expensive art? Do you indulge in man’s worst failings, wine, women and song?

Gates instead decided to start a foundation. He put a lot of his money into it. He split his time between Microsoft and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Eventually, he turned Microsoft over to others to run and devoted himself fulltime to working with the foundation.

What did the foundation focus on? A computer on every desk? Upgrading the world’s software architecture? No.

Much of the world’s population doesn’t need a computer. They need clean drinking water and immunizations for their children.

The Gates foundation set the auspicious goal of eradicating preventable diseases around the world. Much of their work takes place in Africa.

Not only did Bill Gates dump $50billion of his own money into the foundation, he went around to other billionaires and pressured them to donate their wealth as well. Warren Buffet has donated billions to the foundation.

As you might imagine, no longer being head of the evil empire and instead working to save dying children around the world changed many people’s opinion of Bill Gates.

There are places that he is one of the most respected, even beloved person in the world. He regularly meets with kings and presidents. He is a legitimate expert on infectious diseases and vaccines. He’s respected and admired around the globe.

You’ve probably seen him in the news lately in discussions around the current pandemic. Gates, like all of us, is anxious for a vaccine and feels it’s important to maintain social distancing and lock down orders. Unlike you and me, Gates has the power to do something about it. He’s focused the entire efforts of his foundation on finding a vaccine.

And a curious thing has happened. As the quarantine has dragged on, we have more and more people who think that perhaps the whole thing was a mistake. Perhaps the virus isn’t as deadly as we thought. Perhaps shutting down the economy was a trick. Perhaps this is all an effort to take away our rights. Perhaps vaccines are a sham as well.

Perhaps Bill Gates is just using this crisis to sell a bunch of vaccines for a disease that isn’t dangerous so he can get more money. . .to . . .replace. . . the. . . billions. . . he . . .donated to fight the virus and ones like it.

And so once again, Bill Gates finds himself villified and even hated by many people. But, if he can help the campaign against the virus be half as successful as Microsoft was, I don’t think he’ll mind being one of the most hated men in the world. . .


Stay safe.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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(c) 2020 Rodney M Bliss, all rights reserved

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