There’s an interview floating around on Yahoo! News where Bill Gates is raving about China’s “new capitalism” and how great it is. According to Gates, the best part is:
It is a brand-new form of capitalism, and as a consumer its the best thing that ever happened…[the Chinese model is characterized by a] willingness to work hard and not having quite the same medical overhead or legal overhead”.
The translation, of course, is that Chinese workers are willing to work hard because they have no alternative and would otherwise starve. They have no medical benefits, work long hours, and have no freedom to engage in strikes if they don’t like their working conditions. And China-based corporations have less of a burden or incentive under Chinese law to make sure that their products are safe.
I’m quite sure that Bill Gates would love to have such working conditions imposed upon every employee of his. This is the man, after all, who equates free software with communism and seems to believe that corporate intellectual property rights should be unlimited – notwithstanding the fact that “rights” ultimately derive from the people. I guess it doesn’t matter because corporations are people too and obviously they’re much bigger and richer people than the rest of us.
I wonder how he sleeps at night? I guess it’s the giant band-aid on his conscience. Of course, the cynic might suggest that he just wants to make sure he has healthy slave…er…workers for his future corporate-totalitarian society…but I’m not a cynic, of course. Nope, not lil’ ol’ me.