02.09.10

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United Nations and World Bank Help Bill Gates and Microsoft Colonise Africa

Posted in Africa, Bill Gates, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents at 4:56 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Gates at Harper's Magazine
Cover of Harper’s in the June 2009 issue

Summary: Microsoft’s and Gates’ incursions in Africa are backed by self-serving Western agenda of patents and proprietary software

THIS is a long post which contains links to the required evidence. For those who are not familiar with the lesser-known activities of the Gates Foundation, here is a place to start. From this point on we shall assume that the reader is already well informed and therefore will not repeat topics that were covered here before.

Bill Gates’ very special connections at the UN seem to be paying off as abusive monopolies beyond Microsoft (in which he is a stakeholder) are given contracts, with the UN’s help.

Microsoft’s PR buddy at CNET, namely Ina Fried, is offering a stage/platform to more blind-folded praise for the world’s notorious monopoliser. It’s about Gates and Monsanto. Over at Groklaw, Pamela Jones responds to it with: “Would those, by any chance, be patented genetically modified seeds? If so, who benefits? The poor?”

Yes, Groklaw too is familiar with how Gates is using Africa to advance his darling, Monsanto [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8].

We are encouraged to find that Groklaw too has begun complaining about the patent games Gates plays with his “foundation”. A lot of people are fearful of criticising the foundation, as though it’s some sort of holy or sacred institution that one cannot question. That’s what PR has led to — a dangerous false consensus that people are unable to challenge without being frowned upon.

“We are encouraged to find that Groklaw too has begun complaining about the patent games Gates plays with his “foundation”.”The GNU Web site has this old cartoon about Gates creating scarcity even in food that can be grown off the ground (soil) and medicine that can be shared to reduce suffering and hunger, much like Richard Stallman’s concept of “infinite bread”.

Gates tries to characterise all this as “charity” by donating access to man-made monopolies that he is funding (patents). The mainstream press plays along, putting some highly inflated prices (maybe 1000 times the production costs) on some medicine and then hailing Gates’ “generosity” [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8]. People must remember the economics of drug production and also remember that Gates is investing billions of dollars in this (investing, not donating). To him, it’s a win-win scenario; he gets to be portrayed as charitable while at the same time having another opportunity to make big profits. It’s not a lot of money because it’s just patents/licensing, so it’s the illusion of cost. It’s the same when Microsoft ‘”donates” software, putting some imaginary value on the “donation” (which is usually just a tool for blocking competition anyway).

Take this article for example. It’s a patent and PR campaign, not a “vaccine campaign”. As GatesKeepers put it a few days ago, there is too much “worship of the Gates Foundation”.

More worship of the Gates Foundation and it was not even published on a Sunday.

The mainstream press is highly deceiving here because it obeys those who pay the bill (or those editors/publishers who are paid by Bill). Had it actually investigated the issue, then it would discover the other side of the story, which is an inconvenience to banal and “safe” reporting (in the job security sense).

Watch Bill Gates as he makes some new and very silly PR trips [1, 2]. Recently he took his tour to the New York Times and the Huffington Post [1, 2, 3]. He is meeting the editors and chiefs, probably ensuring that they focus on his own side of the story. This whole charade leads to delusional writings from Ziff Davis for example. They too are paid by Microsoft [1, 2, 3]. No wonder a serial monopoliser is portrayed as a hero and saviour of the world. It’s not just Gates who is pulling those PR strings after committing crimes. The loot is usually sufficient to acquire a new public image, which is what a successful PR team is working behind the scenes for (this charade has gone on for years and it is quite relentless, much like a full-time job).

Let’s get to the interesting parts. As we already know, Gates strives to control what tomorrow’s generation will think of computers, patents, and himself of course. When not using or relying on the BBC to rewrite history in his favour, Gates (mis)uses the education systems around the world. We covered the subject in:

  1. Bill Gates Puts in a Million to Ratify His Role as Education Minister
  2. How the Gates Foundation is Used to Ensure Children Become Microsoft Clients
  3. More Dubious Practices from the Gates Foundation
  4. Microsoft Builds Coalitions of NGOs, Makes Political and Educational Changes
  5. Microsoft’s EDGI in India: Fighting GNU/Linux in Education
  6. Microsoft’s Gates Seeks More Monopolies
  7. Gates Foundation Funds Blogs to Promote Its Party Line
  8. Microsoft Bribes to Make Education Microsoft-based
  9. Lobbyists Dodge the Law; Bill Gates Lobbies the US Education System with Another $10 Million
  10. Gates Investments in Education Criticised; Monsanto (Gates-Backed) Corruption Revisited
  11. Latest Vista 7 Failures and Microsoft Dumping

Mr. Reifman, who used to work for Microsoft before exposing the company’s massive tax dodge [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8], has just alluded to the subject:

Given the importance that Bill Gates and the Gates Foundation place on Education and the health of Washington communities, we are eager to hear how the Microsoft chairman squares its tax practices with the state’s $2.6 billion deficit and this dramatic court decision declaring the failure in funding for our public schools.

Retirement for Gates? Not so fast. He only moved on to some other monopolies, one of which is a monopoly on the world’s food supply. Our reader Fewa said that “David Suzuki has a great talk on that topic [...] and comes as a scientist who has done research in the field and is well respected”

Here is an article from David Suzuki which he pointed to:

I am a geneticist by training. At one time, I had one of the largest research grants and genetics labs in Canada. The time I spent in this lab was one of the happiest periods of my life and I am proud of the contribution we made to science. My introductory book is still the most widely used genetics text in the world.

When I graduated as a geneticist in 1961, I was full of enthusiasm and determined to make a mark. Back then we knew about DNA, genes, chromosomes, and genetic regulation. But today when I tell students what our hot ideas were in ’61, they choke with laughter. Viewed in 2000, ideas from 1961 seem hilarious. But when those students become professors years from now and tell their students what was hot in 2000, their students will be just as amused.

“But there is a whole talk to the technical audience [...] and very persuasive,” added Fewa. Here it is on Google Video.

This brings us to the part where Gates is pulling strings like he always does. As we wrote last month, “Gates is already hooked up with the United Nations too (the core of it, nothing less). UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is even hanging out in Bill's and Melinda's own home and there are other connections like Microsoft’s Andrea Taylor.”

“Microsoft strikes partnership deal with UN in Africa,” says this article from last week.

At the ongoing African Union summit on ICT, Microsoft has signed an agreement with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa under which it will provide software, technical support and software development.

Why the heck does the UN assist a convicted monopolist in entering Africa? Well, Bill Gates’ connection with the UN is not one that can be immediately dismissed. He has people from the UN invited to his house and few Microsoft employees enjoy overlap with the UN (never mind his UN lobbying). There is more information about this here and here:

United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and global computer giant, Microsoft Corporation have sealed a partnership memorandum of understanding that aims to foster regional cooperation and economic growth in Africa through the use of Information and Communication Technologies’ (ICTs).

Apparently, Microsoft can “spur digital development”, not just train the public to become a voluntary maintainer of Microsoft’s products.

The East African Community (EAC) and Microsoft have signed an agreement under which the latter would assist the regional body in its efforts to spur digital development in the region.

Have Gates & Microsoft have just used the UN to colonise Africa? The connections there could only help and therefore perpetuate the perceptions about UN corruption being prevalent.

A few months ago we showed how Microsoft had taken over Nigerian schools [1, 2] and now we find this in the press. From last week:

Two teenage students, Miss Oluwagbemisola Akinsipe (SS1) and Miss Ibukunoluwa Onaeko (SS2), both from Christ Ambassadors’ International College, Ibadan, Oyo State, have been awarded Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP).

The award is one of Microsoft’s certificates given on merit to anybody who registered and passed the qualifying examination.

Microsoft is colluding with the government at times and this one seems like another example.

Microsoft and Nigeria have released a song and video as part of a campaign to dissuade people from getting involved in cybercrime.

We have already shared some videos that show how the West is exploiting Nigeria for its oil. In general, Nigerians do have some reasons to be angry, especially given that Bill Gates, for example, contributes to death of children with his investments in cheaply-produced oil in Nigeria. The Los Angeles Times exposed that. A few days ago we found out that Nigerian militants retaliate.

Nigerian militants calling themselves the Joint Revolutionary Council (JRC) said Sunday they had attacked a major Shell oil pipeline in the volatile Niger Delta, in a statement obtained by AFP.

To understand Nigeria’s oil wars, a longer post that strays off topic would be required. We leave that aside for now.

Last week we shared a Pilger video on IMF's role in crises of the developing nations. We have also covered a lot of stories about Microsoft and bankers working in tandem [1, 2]. They must have found commonalities [1, 2] and areas of collaboration. Anyway, in the news we now find that “World Bank and Microsoft to promote development in Africa”:

The World Bank and Microsoft have announced a new partnership that will seek to reinforce social and economic development in Africa by leveraging information and communication technology (ICT). The two institutions today signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on the sidelines of the summit meeting of African heads of state on the theme “ICTs in Africa: Challenges and Prospects for Development”.

Another Memorandum of Understanding (“Project Marshall”). What does the World Bank have to do with this and why make a “new partnership” with Microsoft? Is the World Bank becoming a front for a convicted monopoly abuser? The location, Addis Ababa, might have something to do with another item from the news. Microsoft is releasing Windows Vista (not Vista 7) for the Ethiopian public, as reported by AFP some days ago (also here). That was only announced last week:

Addis Ababa, February 6, 2010 (Addis Ababa) An Amharic version of Microsoft Vista software was launched here last Thursday.

Microsoft is trying to pull them away from other software in ‘creative’ ways (GNU/Linux has decent share in Africa). We have mentioned Ethiopia in relation to Gates' crusades with evil Monsanto, as well. What’s Microsoft’s obsession with Africa anyway? Microsoft is dumping software on them while Gates is dumping patents on life upon them (patented seeds and patented drugs that he holds shares in). It creates debt they will need to service later.

“Bill Gates says banks are dinosaurs, well, some dinosaurs run real fast and bite the hell out of you.”

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