EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

09.24.10

Microsoft Bribes and Tax Avoidance

Posted in Bill Gates, Finance, Microsoft, Steve Ballmer at 1:56 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Enron Microsoft

Summary: Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer are bribing for laws that exempt themselves from tax, bribing to promote their products (while labelling that “charity”), and bribing publications to cover important matters in a way that suits them (portraying investments as “philanthropy”)

MICROSOFT, the company which quietly raises debt, has certainly produced some rich people. But it’s clear based on history that it’s not unusual for a company to be left bankrupt whilst its founders become filthy rich. The two sides — people and business — are most certainly correlated, but they need not move in harmony. There are stories of companies that collapse while paying the management obscenely high wages (SCO is one example).

As Microsoft said a couple of years ago, “Human Greed Has No Bounds” (it was also the title of an article). Steve Ballmer’s lobbying regarding tax (lobbying is just corruption under a nicer name) has just gotten some attention from PubliCola, which calls Ballmer “biggest hypocrite” of the day:

After yesterday’s news that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has given $100,000 to the Defeat I-1098 campaign, Seattle news site PubliCola declared him “biggest hypocrite” of the day. Why? Because Ballmer has spoken time and time again about the need for more education funding in Washington state.

Initiative 1098 would establish an income tax on individuals who make more than $200,000 a year (and couples who make $400,000 a year) and use most of the money to fund … wait for it … education. Washington is one of just seven states without a tax on income.

In this post from Microsoft Nick he adds the following:

One of the richest men in the world, Gates Jr. has so far been silent on the income-tax issue. But odds are he’d side with his father, don’t you think?

What Nick and the rest of the Seattle bloggers neglect to point out is that he is exempted from tax [1, 2, 3, 4] because of the Gates Foundation. So of course he wants everyone but himself to pay a lot more tax to make up for his absence from duty. The biggest mistake people in Washington make is assume that Gates Jr. and Gates Sr. are pushing for themselves to be taxed more heavily.

“The biggest mistake people in Washington make is assume that Gates Jr. and Gates Sr. are pushing for themselves to be taxed more heavily.”All that “lobbying” is essentially a form of bribery. These people spend millions which percolate through the system and find their way in one form or another into the pockets of decision makers (or those whose full-time job is to brainwash/charm and thus effectively replace them, sometimes by offering future favours). Let’s face it, it’s corruption and to pretend otherwise it to be a victim of euphemisms. Bluntly enough, Chips B. Malroy told us last night that “[i]t would see[m] that the only way MS can increase marginally the share of Bing in the USA, is to bribe users or pay OEM’s to make it the default search.” Microsoft already does that with Verizon for example [1, 2, 3, 4].

There is a new and familiar scheme right now. Yes, “Microsoft has another go at Bing bribes,” says the new headline from The Inquirer (“bribe” is the correct, straight term, which was used by some other publications like CNET [1, 2, 3, 4]).

SOFTWARE GIANT Microsoft is having another crack at bribing people to use its Bing search engine.

As we pointed out before (back in July), they are trying to PR-wash it as “charity” so that people won’t slam it for being a bribe. They dress it up as a charity perk.

It’s a credit card or airline-style loyalty program that offers users credits that can be redeemed for products, gift cards or charitable donations.

This is another case of sentimental blackmail, which Microsoft used some months ago in order to convince people to ditch its rivals' Web browsers. It’s utterly shameful what goes on here, namely painting Bing/Internet Explorer as a good cause, just like Gates’ business as an investor, global monopolist, and patents pusher (labelled “philanthropy” owing to intense PR effort).

“The Gates Foundation has funded many news organizations to cover its work…”
      –Richard Stallman
RMS (Richard Stallman) has just caught up with the news that one of his favourite newspapers, The Guardian, sold out to Bill Gates. Yes, the Gates Foundation/Fund is already controlling coverage of itself by paying this publication (and there was evidence to show it just days after the announcement). “The Gates Foundation has funded many news organizations to cover its work,” Richard Stallman wrote in his blog earlier today (after I had mailed him many pointers about it).

Techrights will continue to cautiously cite The Guardian. Whenever it advertises for the Gates Foundation in the designated new site, we will certainly point this out and pressure the The Guardian to report straight news and abolish a PR function (which it carries out in exchange for undisclosed payments from Gates).

Incidentally, speaking of companies misbehaving and then covering their tracks, check out this new article from Michael Arrington.

Collusion and price fixing, that’s what. It is absolutely unlawful for competitors to act together to keep other competitors out of the market, or to discuss ways to keep prices under control. And that appears to be exactly what this group is doing.

This isn’t minor league stuff. We’re talking about federal crimes and civil prosecutions if in fact that’s what they’re doing. I had a quick call with an attorney this morning, and he confirmed that these types of meetings are exactly what these laws were designed to prevent.

I’m not going to say who was at the meeting since at least a couple of the attendees are saying they were extremely uncomfortable with the direction the conversation was going. But like I said, it included just about every major angel investor in Silicon Valley.

On a side note, this is a difficult post to write, because I call nearly every person in that room a friend. But these actions are so completely inappropriate it has to be called out.

Oracle and Apple too are a noteworthy pair. We’ll write about them later.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Boycotting Micro Focus International

    Microsoft's "Partner of the Year" is taking over the patron of SUSE and all of Novell's remains, except the patents (Microsoft has already grabbed those)



  2. Vesna Stilin's Remarks on Željko Topić: Part XI

    Vesna Stilin speaks about her confrontation with EPO Vice-President Željko Topić, who has criminal lawsuits against him in Croatia



  3. Links 22/11/2014: Linux Mint 17.1, Ubuntu MATE

    Links for the day



  4. Links 21/11/2014: Problems at Debian, Jolla Tablet

    Links for the day



  5. Links 18/11/2014: Linux 3.18 RC 5, New DigiKam

    Links for the day



  6. Special Report: Many Criminal Charges Against EPO Vice-President Željko Topić

    The abuses of Željko Topić, who has gained notoriety in his home country, are rapidly becoming public knowledge across all of Europe



  7. Links 16/11/2014: Xfdesktop 4.10.3, GNU Hello 2.10

    Links for the day



  8. Microsoft is Going Into the Anti-Whistleblowing Business, Dodges Criticism Over 19-Year Bug Door in Windows

    With Aorato acquisition Microsoft helps protect the criminals (from whistleblowers) and with lies about .NET Microsoft distracts from a bug that has facilitated remote access into Windows (by those in the know) for nearly two decades



  9. Reaffirming Microsoft's Long-Known Hostility Towards Net Neutrality, Microsoft Crashed Juniper

    Steve Ballmer is ranting against net neutrality and Juniper's business is in trouble after a lot of executives from Microsoft took over most top positions there



  10. Another Massive Step Towards Elimination of Software Patents as Even CAFC Rules Against Them

    After SCOTUS gets involved in the Ultramercial case, the CAFC finally decides to actually serve justice rather than dogma



  11. The GOP's Patent Reform Plan Not Effective Enough to Stop Massive Patent Trolls Like Microsoft/Nokia

    The corporations-serving GOP says that it wants a patent reform, but another reminder is needed of the futility of the suggested changes



  12. How the EPO's Executive Branch (Battistelli and Topić) Banned Scrutiny and Created Authoritarian Model of Control: Part X

    A look at highly dubious moves by EPO President Battistelli and his right-hand man Topić, whose abuses are becoming hard to oversee or even report



  13. Links 15/11/2014: Linux Mint 17.1 Release Candidate, Popcorn Time 0.3.5

    Links for the day



  14. IRC Proceedings: October 26th, 2014 – November 8th, 2014

    Many IRC logs



  15. The Terrible Joke Which is Microsoft 'Loving' Linux: Nightmares With UEFI 'Secure' Boot (i.e. Windows Monopoly Imposed) Continue to Affect GNU/Linux Users

    A reminder of Microsoft's sheer hostility towards GNU/Linux and long-reaching sabotage of GNU/Linux installations



  16. Patent Lawyers Worry About Section 101 in 'Alice' (and Other Patent News)

    A quick roundup of news of interest regarding software patents



  17. Will Write for FUD (Against FOSS)

    Black Duck rears its ugly head again, serving to show that it is in the business of changing perceptions and not in the information or analysis business



  18. Debunking Several Days of Never-Ending Lies About Microsoft and .NET

    .NET is not "Open Source", it cannot be forked (there remains patent threat), Visual Studio is still completely proprietary and it is expected to come to other platforms only because Windows has lost its dominance and Microsoft wants to perpetually control APIs (with software patents) and hence reign over developers



  19. Links 14/11/2014: LibreOffice 4.3.4, Ads Now in Firefox

    Links for the day



  20. Links 14/11/2014: GNOME 3.14.2, PulseAudio 6.0

    Links for the day



  21. Microsoft Windows is Still Designed as a Paradise of Back Doors, Intrusion, Wiretaps, and Interception

    At many levels -- from communication to storage and encryption -- Windows is designed for the very opposite of security



  22. Forget the FUD About Bash and OpenSSL, Microsoft Windows Blamed for Massive Credit Cards Heist

    Home Depot learns its lesson from a Microsoft Windows disaster, but it stays with proprietary software rather than move to software that is actively audited by many people and is inherently better maintained (Free/libre software)



  23. Windows 'Update' and NSA Back Doors, Including a 19-Year Bug Door in Microsoft Windows

    The back doors-enabled Microsoft Windows is being revealed and portrayed as the Swiss cheese that it really is after massive holes are discovered (mostly to be buried by a .NET propaganda blitz)



  24. Revealed: Microsoft is Trying to Corrupt the UK in Order to Eliminate Its OpenDocument Format-Oriented Standards Policy

    Microsoft interference with Britain's preference for ODF is now confirmed, thanks to a valuable news report from Computer Weekly; OOXML lock-in is being unleashed by Microsoft on Android users



  25. Links 13/11/2014: Ubuntu MATE 14.04.1 LTS, New KDE Plasma

    Links for the day



  26. .NET is NOT "Open Source", But Microsoft's Minions Shamelessly Openwash It Right Now

    The openwashing of .NET continues with yet another publicity stunt that is intended to lock in developers



  27. Links 11/11/2014: GNOME Trademark Dispute Settled, Mozilla Embraces Tor

    Links for the day



  28. Patent Reform Subversion After Republican (GOP) 'Win' in US Senate

    The Grand Corporations Party, or the political party which serves large businesses that are funding it, continues to just focus on a mirage of a 'reform' rather than tackle the real issues where culprits include very large businesses such as Microsoft and Apple



  29. Microsoft-Armed Patent Troll MOSAID (Now Conversant) Wants to Sweep up More Patents for Litigation

    Reports about patent trolls and scope of patents serve to show what the foes of Free software are up to right now



  30. When Courts in the US Attack the Right to Reuse APIs

    Challenging the clueless ruling from the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in the United States (very pro-software patents and anti-computer science), notable programmers write to the highest court


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts