William H. Gates is worth around $80 billion, so people tend to pay attention when the Microsoft founder says something about the way he thinks the world should go. Now, though, Gates might be in the midst of stirring up some controversy, as the multi-billionaire said recently that the problems of the world are so big that we might all be better off with a global government; the sort of statement that's sure to make the paranoid set quite antsy.
This week, The Huffington Post pointed to a recent interview Bill Gates conducted with the German publication Süddeutsche Zeitung, in which Gates lamented the considerable troubles facing the global community.
"We have global issues," Gates said. "The way we manage the world is not hyper efficient."
Gates' solution: "a kind of global government."
"You can make fun of it," Gates continued, "but in truth it was sad how the [climate change conference] in Copenhagen was run, how individuals [behaved] like the UN system has failed.
"[The UN was] created especially [for security] in the world," Gates said.
"We are ready for war, because we have taken every precaution. We have NATO, we have divisions, jeeps, trained people. But what is with epidemics? How many doctors do we have [compared to] planes, tents, [and] scientists? If there were such a thing as world government, we would be better prepared."
That Gates is focused on disease in particular as a major threat to world stability is in keeping with his actions over the past decade. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation – which Gates launched in 2000, and which currently holds assets totaling in excess of $36 billion – has, as its mission states, caused the reduction of extreme poverty and dangerous infectious diseases. The foundation has targeted malaria, tuberculosis, and other diseases in particular, and it has donated billions toward the treatment of AIDS.
The call for "world government" is sure to raise the suspicions of persons wary of such things. The term itself can hardly be mentioned without raising concerns about "globalists," "the New World Order," and even "the Illuminati" in some circles. Further, it's not the first time Gates has called for increased power in the governmental sector.
Last week, The Verge carried an interview with Gates in which the former Microsoft CEO said that the only form of digital currency that would work is one in which governments can see who is making transactions.
"The one I see getting us to critical mass," Gates said, "along with the government regulatory support we need is where it's attributed, where we can see who actually did this transaction."
Publications such as The Blaze took Gates' comments as evidence that Gates supported increased government access to digital currencies.
Gates' comments will no doubt make those wary of globalization even more nervous going forward, as the multi-billionaire has the kind of global clout to make world leaders take notice. At the time, though, it at least looks like Gates is focused on saving human lives, not bringing down an iron boot on humanity.
[Image via New York Post]