Ortel is not surprised: “It is an old story when monopolists and oligopolists attempt to launder reputations through charities.”
Bill Gates’ philanthropist image is losing its lustre after the press started to dig into the magnate’s past following the announcement of his divorce with his wife Melinda. What else may resurface in addition to Gates’ affairs and meetings with billionaire paedophile Jeffrey Epstein?
It has recently turned out that Bill Gates, the legendary founder of Microsoft, had an affair with an employee and reportedly “pursued” several women at Microsoft and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation long after he got married.
Still, it was Bill’s relations with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein which apparently became the last straw for his wife. In the autumn of 2019, a few months after the paedophile financier was found dead in his prison cell in Manhattan, The New York Times released a report unveiling deeper ties between Gates and Epstein. According to Vanity Fair, Melinda began talking to divorce lawyers around the time the story came out.
Does the End Justify the Means?
The first meeting between Gates and Epstein came in 2011, three years after the infamous financier pleaded guilty to soliciting prostitution from an underage girl, became a registered sex offender and later spent 13 months in jail, according to Business Insider.
One might wonder as to why Bill Gates turned a blind eye to Epstein’s reputation, notes Charles Ortel, a Wall Street analyst and investigative journalist.
“People less rich than Bill Gates are normally quite cautious in nurturing relationships with outsiders,” he says. “Moreover, until recently, Bill Gates was thought to be especially wise and financially astute. So, it is particularly odd that Gates would spend precious time, over years, with someone such as Jeffrey Epstein, leaving aside Epstein’s known, criminal proclivities. At the very least, spending time with Epstein, particularly after his release from prison shows remarkably poor judgement on the part of Bill Gates.”
The Daily Beast suggested on 18 May that Gates turned a blind eye to Jeffrey Epstein’s sex crimes conviction apparently because wanted the well-connected financier to help him secure the Nobel Peace Prize.
“He [Gates] thought that Jeffrey would be able to help him, that he would know the right people, or some kind of way to massage things, so he could get the Nobel Peace Prize, which is what Bill wants more than anything else in the world,” a former Gates Foundation employee said, as quoted by the media outlet. “I think he was ultimately disappointed it didn’t work out.”
Furthermore, Norwegian business newspaper DN reported in October 2020 that Gates and Epstein travelled to Strasbourg in 2013 and met with Thorbjørn Jagland, a former Norwegian prime minister who was at that time the chairman of the Nobel committee. However, a Gates representative has denied that the tech magnate had campaigned for the Nobel Prize in any way.
Jeffrey Epstein was not the only “bad guy” Bill Gates was hanging out with: he had also maintained close ties with Rajat Kumar Gupta, a former director of management consultancy firm McKinsey & Company (from 1994 to 2003). Gupta was charged with insider trading in 2012 and spent two years in jail. Earlier he served as an advisor to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
“Rajat Gupta filled many roles in the Gates Foundation and organisations such as the Global Fund that were and are supported by Gates,” Ortel remarks.
Cooperation With the Clinton Foundation
There is yet another problem that may further tarnish Gates’ image, Ortel highlights, citing the philanthropist’s cooperation with the Clinton Foundation. The Clintons’ brainchild has never been properly organised and operated, according to the analyst, who has been looking into the Clinton Foundation’s alleged fraud for several years.
The Wall Street analyst is not the only private investigator questioning the foundation’s operations: whistleblowers Lawrence W. Doyle and John F. Moynihan argue that the Clinton Foundation abused its charitable tax-exempt protection and owes between $400 million and $2.5 billion in taxes. This casts a shadow on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which funnelled over $25 million to the Clintons’ charity network.
“Bill Gates has run one of the largest charities in the world for several decades,” Ortel says. “He should understand that his private foundation must accurately describe the identity, purpose and amount of each significant donation made in filings submitted, under penalties of perjury that circulate in the public domain.”
The analyst insists that ongoing review of filings for the Gates Foundation reveal false claims about many grants from the Gates’ towards Clinton ‘charities’ from 2005 forward. According to Ortel, “the recipients are falsely described as a type of charity, and the amounts shown in many instances do not reconcile between Gates and Clinton disclosures.”
“Was Bill Gates sending money towards Bill Clinton exclusively for charitable reasons, or was he purchasing influence over a dynastic political family with deep reach into multinational globalist institutions?” asks Ortel. “And, did anyone in the Gates orbit of advisors verify that the Clinton ‘charities’ were lawfully organised or operated to perform work outside Little Rock, Arkansas?”
Gates’ Past is Haunting Him
Meanwhile, it appears that Bill Gates himself is no saint. The tech magnate “wasn’t always so publicly revered”, according to Bloomberg: “During the heyday of the PC revolution, he was the ruthless nerd-turned-tycoon who brutally and profanely berated underlings and allegedly tried to slash Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen’s equity in the company while he was undergoing cancer treatment in the early 1980s,” the media outlet recalls.
Ortel wonders whether Gates’ initial interest in philanthropy stemmed from his desire to improve his public image:
“Was the Gates Foundation exclusively charitable, or was it also an attempt by Bill Gates to insulate himself from deserved criticism or even from regulatory and judicial actions against Microsoft or other Gates-led for-profit activities?” the analyst asks.
Vanity Fair told a strikingly similar story about former President Bill Clinton in December 2020. Describing how Clinton’s ex-aide Doug Band helped save the public career of his boss after the latter left the White House, the magazine noted: “Band’s ultimate goal was to transform Clinton from a beleaguered politician… into the world’s philanthropist in chief.”
Ortel is not surprised by this apparent similarity: “It is an old story when monopolists and oligopolists attempt to launder reputations through charities.”
“No doubt, the Gates Foundation has done important work,” the analyst underscores. “Equally, Bill Gates has made mistakes… One reason that Bill Gates’ reputation may never be the same is that the divorce will prompt more aggressive scrutiny of his early years and of the monopolistic business practices at Microsoft, prior to creation of the Gates Foundation.”