Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez is possibly the world’s best loved leader. He is not without critics—particularly among the American Nazi Party (GOP) and its Vichy Democrat allies—but, for many of us, Chávez is the closest thing we’ve seen to a global hero.
Chávez has done many ambitious things, from holding foreign corporations accountable to attempting to unify South America. But he’s best known for his incessant Bush bashing. He has even called Dubya an asshole. Of course, many of us have called Bush an asshole, but it’s more special when a respected world leader says it.
In his most famous verbal assault, Chávez called Bush the devil in a speech he delivered at the United Nations. He received a vigorous round of applause. Clearly, people are hungry for the truth in our era of reality TV, computer games and propaganda.
In the meantime, several Latin American nations have been waging a quiet war against Microsoft, primarily by supporting open source software.
These two threads—Chávez’ Bush bashing and the Latin American open-source revolution—were the twin threads of one of the most evil, diabolical schemes that ever hatched in my fertile brain. Yet I didn’t even see the solution lying under my nose until I read a provocative article titled Microsoft’s real open-source nightmare.
In the first paragraph, author Charles Cooper writes, “On the eve of this country’s presidential election, here’s a question I'd like to pose to the remaining three candidates: what would you do if other governments begin snubbing U.S. companies because of nationalistic reasons? In particular, one big software vendor comes to mind.”
Of course, he’s referring to Campaign 2008 and Microsoft. As you may know, I’m a part of Campaign 2008, running for Superintendent of Public Instruction in Washington State and making Billysoft (Bill Gates + Microsoft) a campaign issue in Bill Gates’ home town.
But this is the sentence that electrified me:
“If Microsoft really got singed because of strong anti-U.S. blowback, it would prove an incredible boon for open source.”
That sentence lit up a little light bulb in my head, which flashed the message, “Do you get it now, dummy? The Latin American open source movement is as inspid as open source fans here in the U.S. because it follows the same tactics, which focus on gradually eroding Microsoft’s marke share.”
Which isn’t to say open source isn’t a powerful adversary; on the contrary, it may ultimately be Microsoft’s worst enemy. The problem is that the open source revolution is moving at a relative snail’s pace, slowed by a Pandora’s box of dirty tricks cooked up by Bill Gates’ stable of corporate attorneys, media whores and operatives.
Another problem is that the open source revolution lacks teeth. If your only objective is free software, then, fine go with Linux (or get a Mac). But what about holding Billysoft (Bill Gates + Microsoft) accountable for its monumental list of crimes?
A genuine software revolution should be personal, and it should be vicious. The campaign to promote the Firefox web browser is a step in the right direction.
But when I read the above mentioned article, a wicked thought crossed my mind: What if Hugo Chávez turned his guns on Bill Gates? Let me offer a clue:
Strong anti-U.S. blowback could destroy Microsoft and crush Bill Gates, demonstrating that Corporate America isn’t invincible and offering a taste of justice to Billysoft’s countless victims, particularly the millions of children it has exploited around the world.
Given Bill Gates’ fantastic wealth, prominence and close relations with George W. Bush, combined with the fact that he’s such a fucking asshole, it’s really amazing that the growing Latin American revolt against Corporate America hasn’t targeted Gates to a great extent. Gates has certainly made many enemies around the world, and Billysoft has been involved in plenty of scandals in Latin America, but Latin America vs Bill Gates just isn’t front page news.
I suspect there are two major reasons for this. First, the corporate media would be loathe to publicize such a development. Second, the corporate media have done such a fabulous job of promoting the big lie that Bill Gates is a philanthropist, they’ve even duped most Latin Americans.
A third possible reason is that the open source movement is heavily infiltrated by Microsoft operatives, who, naturally, advise open source fans to forget about politics and just concentrate on slooooowly eroding that Microsoft share.
I’m going to do what I can to rectify this sorry situation, partly by publicizing the truth about Bill Gates and his phony philanthropy. At the same time, I have a request of Hugo Chávez:
Please add Bill Gates to your hit list.
One could probably brainstorm many reasons for taking on Bill Gates. Allow me to list ten good ones.
1. Bill Gates is a global asshole.
2. Gates is a powerful symbol of free-market-whore capitalism.
3. Gates is a major ally of George W. Bush.
4. Microsoft has already been rejected by the governments of several Latin American nations, including Brazil, Ecuador, Cuba and Venezuela.
5. Billysoft is already at war with Latin America; it has fucked with Brazil and exploited Peruvian children, for example.
6. Gates could be an easy victory (he’s already trailing blood).
7. Gates’ phony philanthropy needs to be exposed.
8. Gates bashing would give Chávez more publicity, exposing him to an even larger audience.
9. Gates bashing would be an interesting and worthwhile experiment in corporate accountability.
10. Microsoft could be (and probably is) in league with the U.S. federal government and thus poses a security risk for all nations (including the U.S.).
Most of these are pretty self-explanatory. To learn more, see my Billysoft reference. However, I would like to expand on the fifth point here.
America’s media whores have moaned endlessly about George Bush’s misadministration dropping the ball on Latin America, foolishly giving nations that were under the United States’ thumb an opportunity to elect representative governments and move towards independence from Yankee imperialism. With Ecuador promising to shut down a U.S. military base on its soil and Paraguay electing a leftish president, it appears that Colombia may be Team Exxon’s last remaining military outpost in South America.
That may be one of the reasons the U.S. is re-establishing the Fourth Fleet. But the military isn’t the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s only weapon. Is it possible that George Bush, Inc. is using a phony philanthropist to infiltrate and help subvert Latin American nations?
Bill Gates threw some money at Peruvian schools in an effort to influence a vote that could have cost him some money. Ecuador’s president, Rafael Correa—a Chávez ally—has experience fighting Microsoft:
• Ecuador: Microsoft and Other Companies Closed for Tax Evasion (Milton Ramirez, Global Voices, October 11, 2007)
• Ecuador Tax Agency Closes Microsoft Branch Offices (CowboyNeal, SlashDot, October 6, 2007)
• Ecuador leader: just say ‘no’ to Microsoft (Reed Johnson, La Plaza/Lost Angeles Times, June 13, 2007)
In early April 2008, a flurry of articles announced Bill Gates’ sudden interest in Latin American education. Consider the article Bill Gates: Latin America must invest more in education (International Herald Tribune, April 4, 2008).
It says the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced a partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank to provide $4 million in aid to help disabled Latin Americans learn computer skills. In other words, Mr. Global Asshole is going to get the sympathy vote by tracking down disabled kids, then teaching them how to use Microshaftware.
Hugo Chávez is familar with the Inter-American Development Bank. He helped launch the Banco del Sur as an alternative to the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the Inter-American Development Bank (Chavez and allies challenge IMF, World Bank).
In addition, Gates has apparently forged a larger partnership with the Spanish telecommunications group Telefónica SA “to expand its program of Internet-based training and content materials for teachers across Latin America. The program currently operates in Spain, Mexico and Colombia and will now include Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru and others” (Bill Gates: Latin America must invest more in education).
The fact that Telefónica is currently operating in the U.S. proxy states of Mexico and Colombia is a powerful clue. Wikipedia has some troubling things to say about Telefónica, which is Spain’s second largest corporation. Consider, especially, the following passage:
“Telefónica has been continually targeted by most recent governments in South America because of its monopolistic business practices, due to the evidence of bribery and underhanded legal agreements when originally entering the markets in association with corrupt governments. Most of the administrations which allowed Telefónica entry into South American markets have been unmasked as corrupt and prone to bribery, a situation which, according to investigators, Telefónica took advantage of. To wit, Fujimori in Peru, Menem in Argentina, etc.”
In plain English, Bill Gates might as well be a member of George Bush’s administration, one who draws far less scrutiny and criticism in Latin America than that awful whore, Condoleeza Rice. Even if Gates was acting on his own, improving the lives of Latin American children would not be his ultimate goal.
Having worked for the Seattle School District for sixteen years, I can state with authority that Bill Gates excels only at shitting on children.
But how can Hugo Chávez fight Billysoft? Venezuela is already among the Latin American nations that have embraced open source software. However, that isn’t really fighting Billysoft; it’s just slowly and quietly eroding Microsoft’s market share.
To really stick it to Gates, Hugo Chávez could simply call Bill Gates an asshole. Of course, he could and should say more than that. He should publicize Bill Gates as the capitalistic, child-exploiting pig he is. In particular, he should help break the big lie about Bill Gates’ corporate philanthropy.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. Below is a list of ten things Chávez can do to tear Bill Gates a new asshole.
1) Call Bill Gates an asshole.
2) Call Bill Gates’ father an asshole.
3) Remind the world of the connections between Bill Gates and George W. Bush.
4) Link Microsoft with “software terrorism.”
5) Spread a little FUD.
6) Help expose Gates’ phony philanthropy.
7) Promote superior web browsers.
8) Create an anti-Microsoft website(s) which documents Microsft’s crimes against various nations, particularly in Latin America and exposes his phony philanthropy.
9) Get a Mac ads
10) Encourage international blowback targeting Billysoft, especially in retaliation for U.S. attacks on Latin America, be they military, political, economic or other.
The first five strategies are remarkable for their simplicity. I mean, how hard can it be to call Bill Gates what he is—a global asshole?
It would be worth it just to watch America’s media whores do backflips. After all, they would be loathe to publicize an attack on a corporate icon such as Bill Gates, yet how could they ignore it? Eventually, Chávez’ words would be harshly condemned by the corporate media and further publicized on innumerable hi-tech forums.
Chávez could stick the knife in a little deeper and help educate people at the same time by calling Bill Gates’ father an asshole. For William Gates, Sr. is a bastard in his own right, and he’s a vital cog in the Microsoft crime syndicate.
Of course, it would be stupid not to link Bill Gates with George W. Bush, the most hated man in the world. After all, both men are free-market-whore capitalists. Bush rescued Gates from justice shortly after he stole the White House, and he has visited Medina (where Gates lives) several times on fundraising trips.
If the U.S. government wants to designate Hugo Chávez a terrorist, then let Chávez return the favor. In fact, Chávez has already used the term “media terrorism,” so why not popularize the term software terrorism, and link it to Billysoft?
Branding Bill Gates and his father assholes and software terrorists, linking them to George W. Bush, and blowing the whistle on their phony philanthropy...OUCH! If Chávez wants to further characterize them as “corporate pedophiles,” so be it.
FUD is an acronym for “Fear, Uncertainty and Distortion.” IBM is widely credited with its origins, but it was quickly adopted by Microsoft, with which it is generally associated.
One can see FUD at work in Billysoft’s patent games and its alleged blackmail campaign against public schools, among many examples.
Well, why not fight fire with fire? Hugo Chávez could and should give Bill Gates a taste of his own medicine in the form of a massive dose of Bolivarian FUD.
But I’m not suggesting that Chávez should lie or distort the truth; there’s no need to. Rather, he could merely engage in speculation.
For example, Chávez could question whether the CIA might somehow be spying on Venezuela through PC’s owned by private citizens. After all, many U.S. citizens have asked the same thing. How can we be sure, one way or the other?
This type of FUD might be characterized as intelligent guessing or speculation. We know Bill Gates and the U.S. federal government are evil, and we know they are allies to at least some degree.
We also know the federal government spies on its own citizens, and Bill Gates has been accused of similar dirty tricks. Combine monumental corruption with ever advancing technology, and you’ve got a Pandora’s box full of FUD.
All Chávez has to do is open the lid.
If Chávez really wants to open the world’s eyes, he could blow the whistle on the Gates’ phony philanthropy. In fact, the Los Angeles Times has already printed a sensational exposé.
Unfortunately, the media have conveniently ignored the truth as they continuously characterize Gates as a philanthropist. It’s going to take a strong voice to get the truth out there. In the process, Chávez could also remind people around the world that the corporate media are little more than propagandists.
Web browsers are among the most exciting and politicized software programs. One of the things that makes them exciting is the fact that there are no less than three browsers—Firefox, Opera and Safari—that are widely considered superior to Microsoft’s troubled Internet Exploder (IE).
Chávez could help the revolution by simply recommending a good browser over IE.
Firefox would be a natural pick. It’s backed by a fairly provocative anti-Microsoft campaign, and it has a bit of a leftist reputation.
However, Chávez could do even more damage if he plugged all three browsers. After all, they’re all competing with Microsoft. Opera and Safari are produced by corporations. But Norway’s Opera is a relatively small and clean company. Apple may not be quite so clean, but it’s light years ahead of Microsoft, and it does make top class hardware and software.
Imagine if the Venezuelan government began slapping notices on its websites advising visitors that “This site is best viewed with quality browsers (Firefox, Opera & Safari),” linked to another page for more information. OUCH!
I guarantee that act alone would make Bill Gates’ frail little body quiver with rage.
Imagine if Venezuela became the first nation to launch an anti-Microsoft website! The possibilities are all over the map. For ideas, Hugo Chávez might want to consult my new Billysoft site.
|Microshit, Latin America|
Chavistas could also support a website that keeps tabs on Microsoft’s Latin American family of websites, at right.
Or, if that seems a little over the top, Venezuelan webmasters could simply insert anti-Microsoft notices on government websites. They could join Google’s referral program and earn up to $1 every time they convert a visitor to Firefox!
Apple’s famous Get a Mac ads have become a major hit. In fact, some people have speculated that they’ve played a significant role in Microsoft’s ever shrinking reputation.
So imagine if Chávez played a role in a clever Get a Mac ad, perhaps with a Linux twist, which was posted on YouTube. Such a stunt would inject a little humor in Chávez’ anti-corporate campaign, softening his image as a sadistic, tyrannical communist dictator, drug runner and part-time terrorist.
The possibilities are as numerous as they are exciting. Here’s one idea...
Viewers see four people instead of two. There are the usual Bill Gates clone and the cool, sophisticated Mac guy. But standing behind them are George W. Bush (wearing a cowboy hat) and Hugo Chávez, dressed in a brilliant jacket sporting Venezuela’s national colors in a V-shaped design and his trademark red beret. (Note: I doctored a Venezuelan government photograph of Chávez, separating the blue and red elements with a yellow stripe that better represents a V, for Venezuela and Victory.)
Obviously, we’re going to have to settle for a Bush impersonator, but Chávez could be played by the real deal. That alone would make the ad a sensational hit.
Over on the left, Bill Gates and George W. Bush mourn over their endless screw ups—Windows Vista vs Iraq; Microsoft’s legendary security problems vs the failure to prevent the 9/11 terrorist attacks; Zune vs Hurricane Katrina; patent games vs spying on citizens; monopolism vs authoritarianism; attacks against open source software vs attacks on the Constitution and civil liberties; Gates’ and Bush’s shared public relations nightmare.
They ask why they’ve failed in spite of their partnership.
On the right, the Mac guy and Chávez talk about innovation, social justice and the importance of taking care of customers and citizens, not screwing them.
Finally, Chávez puts in a good word for Linux and open source software, and he and the Mac guy look at each other with mutual respect, then shake hands. After all, the Mac’s operating system is based on the open source Unix program.
If done correctly, such an ad could be an utter bombshell. It could easily rank as the #1 video on YouTube for some time.
It would also be publicized by the growing army of Mac fans, as well as open source software fans. People who hate George W. Bush (the majority of Americans) would eagerly devour it, as would the growing number of people who hate Bill Gates.
It would also counter the image the corporate media are trying to craft of Chávez as a humorless neanderthal. In the ad (which could be extremely humorous), we would see Chávez discussing IT issues. He would be smart enough to recognize Apple’s superiority over Microsoft, yet he could maintain his individualism by championing open source software.
It would also tend to shoot down claims that Chávez is anti-everything. After all, Apple is a U.S. corporation. But it is relatively benign, and it gives customers their money’s worth.
A series of Get a Mac ad spinoffs starring Hugo Chávez could rank as one of the most sensational political stunts ever.
Suppose Hugo Chávez isn’t interested in taking on Billysoft, for one reason or another. What then?
Well, the battle against Microsoft really isn’t dependent on one individual. In fact, the battle has been raging, across many varied fronts, for many years. Hugo Chávez could simply make the war much more educational and exciting—and he could draw blood.
Merely suggesting a duel between Hugo Chávez and Bill Gates is newsworthy, in my opinion. And it will remain newsworthy as long as the offer is out there, hanging over Bill Gates’ head.
In the meantime, there’s no reason us ordinary people can’t stick it to Bill Gates. Unfortunately, open source fans have been fighting Microsoft the way liberals have fought George W. Bush. What we need is some intelligent adults who are ready for a taste of corporate accountability. And if there are no mature adults to find in the U.S., then maybe we should look to the continent where political reform has become a way of life, South America.
Are you with me?
On May 11, 2008, I typed blowback + Microsoft into Google and got 57,000 hits. Blowback + “Bill Gates” yielded 31,100 hits. Unfortunately, it appears that the great majority of hits don’t really discuss blowback in relation to Billysoft. But watch those figures change in quantity and quality in the coming months.