“I’m an American; I believe in the American way, I worry if the government encourages open source, and I don’t think we’ve done enough education of policymakers to understand the threat.”
–Jim Allchin, President of Platforms & Services Division at Microsoft
Summary: New disclosures from the White House reveal that Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates are regular visitors
Microsoft’s influence in the United States (US) government is a subject that we cover quite a lot. It only makes sense to do so if Microsoft's CEO Steve Ballmer blackmails Obama, for example. Steve Ballmer and his wife also paid Obama at a personal capacity. Breakfast with Michelle Obama, anyone?
Well, according to the White House Web site (the new Web site runs GNU/Linux and Free software, having recently dumped Windows), transparency truly comes.
This new disclosures page states: “As part of President Obama’s commitment to government transparency, we are providing records of White House visitors on an ongoing basis online. ”
Watch who came knocking:
BALLMER STEVEN A U84453 71597 VA 4/9/2009 7:31:13 PM B0402 4/9/2009 9:06:25 PM B0402 4/4/2009 2:47:13 PM 4/9/2009 7:25:00 PM 4/9/2009 11:59:00 PM 6 RC WIN 4/4/2009 2:49:01 PM RC GODFREY HARRISON WH WESTWING GODFREY HARRISON WESTWINGTOUR
BALLMER STEVEN A U04221 74703 VA 6/3/2009 10:43:04 AM A0401 6/3/2009 11:57:11 AM A0401 6/2/2009 5:55:23 PM 6/3/2009 11:00:00 AM 6/3/2009 11:59:00 PM 13 DC WIN 6/2/2009 5:59:33 PM DC SUMMERS LAWRENCE WH WW JUNG BRYAN
BALLMER STEVEN A U02528 74697 VA 6/3/2009 12:03:01 PM K0102 6/3/2009 4:50:42 PM K0102 5/28/2009 2:25:10 PM 6/3/2009 11:45:00 AM 6/3/2009 11:59:00 PM
Groklaw interprets the above as follows: “Steve Ballmer requested and got appointments once in April and twice in June, if I’ve read the records accurately.”
According to TechFlash, Bill Gates still visits the White House, just like Ballmer:
What exactly did Bill Gates discuss with Barack Obama in the Oval Office in March?
For the record, Steve Ballmer is also on the list of White House visitors, but it doesn’t look like the Microsoft CEO got any face-to-face POTUS time of his own.
Barack Obama’s relationship with Bill Gates is nothing new. They met before. Bill Gates and his father have legions of lobbyists running rampant around there. These include an infamous chap called Jack Abramoff.
In light of the recent Mississippi settlement [1, 2], read the following new press release. Is it maybe related to the Mississippi settlement? Somewhere, somehow? It would be absurd for the Mississippi Department of Information Technology to contract Microsoft, which they have just fined severely for crimes. It still serves as a good example of Microsoft’s brunt in the US. █