"Hit me with your death shot!"
With no apologies to Pat Benatar (now playing segregated venues, like nearly all the rest of them)
This video recalls Bill Gates’ make-over as a really wacky guy and Great Humanitarian (unthreateningly clad in pastel sweaters)—a rehabilitation that successfully erased his ill repute as a monopolistic pig and psychopathic brat. (For an honest look at Bill Gates’ character, see Paul Allen’s memoir Idea Man.)
If high school and college students were taught how to spot, and see through, propaganda (as opposed to learning not to question it), they’d see that Gates was sanctified by those displays of manic goofiness and philanthropic faux-concern in much the same way that John D. Rockefeller, Gates’ predatory role model, was “redeemed” of his unpleasant public image (which had been worsened by the Ludlow Massacre), thanks to the propaganda skills of Ivy Lee (who went on to serve as a consultant to the Nazis). Lee filled the press with photos of the cadaverous Rockefeller handing dimes to little girls. That, and the creation of the Rockefeller Foundation, foretold Gates’ “redemption” after the US government sued him for violating anti-trust laws to turn Microsoft into an octopus, as Rockefeller’s Standard Oil had been. (Unlike Rockefeller, Gates skated; nor have we been allowed to see the settlement agreement.)
Richard Nixon also underwent a makeover that anticipated Gates’ performance as a Wild and Crazy Guy. Having melted down before the press just after losing in his bid to serve as governor of California in 1962 (“You won’t have Nixon to kick around any more”), and also having come off as a dismal stick throughout his 1960 presidential run against John F. Kennedy, Nixon improved his image (slightly) by playing the piano on “The Tonight Show” (then starring Jack Paar), and, a few years later, popped up in a self-effacing comic bit on “Laugh-In” (“Sock it to me??).
And the rest is history (most of it unknown to most of us, thanks to both our school system and our amnesiac “free press”).