January 29, 2017
Why Are Buffet And Gates Hopeful About America?

Bill Gates and Warren Buffet are optimistic about the future. They spoke at Columbia University on Friday and gave hope to the fearful and the Trump-wary.

“I am confident that America will move ahead," Buffett said.
Gates, meanwhile, said the desire for innovation and support for research are “strong” and “largely bipartisan,” despite differences on how to accomplish and fund both.

“This administration is new enough; we don’t know how its budget priorities are going to come out,” but there is much intensity to ensure that the executive branch and Congress encourage “amazing things,” Gates said.

They also cautioned people against short-term thinking and told the kids to focus on doing good works. Got that? Keep it in mind.

And there you have it. Thus sprake two of the most revered oracles of our, uhm, less than exalted culture. One, sounding like he suffers from echolalia from hearing too much Trumpspeak, assures us we’re going to like, totally do amazing things! The other regurgitates a limp cliche about America moving forward that sounds like something lifted from one of Barack Obama’s weekly radio addresses. Everything is fine. America is moving onward and upward, just like Thomas Friedman says, and all that divides us are disputes over strategy and funding. See you at the next Rotary Club meeting!

(I’m sorry, but Bill Gates’ pollyannish “technology will save us from everything” attitude is annoying beyond words; I really just wish that he and Mark Zuckerberg would buy a secluded island and go hide there forever and ever, and take Thomas Friedman and Fareed Zakaria with them.)

In a totally unrelated bit of news, Forbes Magazine informs us that the ten richest Americans made six billion dollars in the first week of Trump’s presidency. Bill Gates might be unclear about the budgeting priorities of the Trump Administration, but the criminals on Wall Street aren’t. They’re positively bullish on what they’ve seen and heard so far, and the stock market has hit record highs. Unlike the rest of us, they’re experiencing certainty. Isn’t that nice? Do you think Warren Buffet’s optimism might have something to do with the fact that he made 2.4 billion last week? (Strange prick Larry Ellison, on the other hand, had to settle for a measly $928 million, loser!)

Don’t worry about walls, Muslim bans, pipelines, runaway climate change, purges at the EPA, or Trump’s genuinely clinical narcissism. Things will be just dandy. Amazing things will continue to happen at Microsoft (ha ha ha ha) and Warren Buffet will still make billions (and still be regarded by the people he screws as a kindly old grandpa). Just keep your chin up, do good works, and by all means, avoid short term thinking!

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Posted by OHollern at January 29, 2017 11:58 AM
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Pro-status-quo reassurances from the filthy-rich likes of Gates and Buffett are inherently non-credible... well, unless they're talking to fellow plutes.

Posted by: CH on January 30, 2017 2:15 PM

Love your reporting, sweetie.

But you've got to add a Twitter link so I can tweet your thoughts to the world.

Carry on!

Posted by: Cirze on January 31, 2017 2:49 PM

Umm, no. When the heavy tanks roll in, only a fool points his bazooka at sparrows.

Both Buffett and Gates have social consciences. Buffet has fun picking good stocks. That's hardly in a category with, say, condemning innocent refugees to misery and death, or corrupting the very office of the presidency. Moreover, he has made a business out of sharing his knowledge and decisions with ordinary investing folks with a few thou to put into the market. (Ask anyone who was wise enough — alas, not I — to have purchased Berkshire Hathaway in its early days.) It was Buffett, pleased remember, who pointed out with some outrage that his secretary pays taxes at a higher rate than he.

Gates has pushed fellow billionaires into philanthropy, with varying degrees of success. But he is shedding a large part of his personal fortune for good causes, reasoning that once you have enough to live fabulously well ten times over, you don't need the rest.

This society has a real problem, and right now it is not Gates and Buffett. The Engine Room of Evil is the White House. Aim your artillery in that direction.

Yours very crankily,
The New York Crank

Posted by: The New YorkCrank on January 31, 2017 3:59 PM
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