Guinness Book of World Records claims Bill Gates has more power than President of USA

I think it is in the 1997 edition, I don’t have the book with me.

While money = power, I’m not sure that I would conclude that Gates has more power than the El Presidente.

I am wondering on what grounds the GBWR would have come to this conclusion.

Your thoughts?

I guess it depends on how you define “power”. And, of course, keep in mind that Gates is pretty much free to act (as long as he doesn’t break the law… and get caught), while the President is constantly under scrutiny, and is subject to Congress (theoretically).

'Course, I doubt that Gates has managed to acquire any nukes of his own.

The Micro$oft nukes only work under Windows XP. This is unfortunate, because as we all know, if you’re a Mac user, you’re now Jewish, and that does not bode well for Israel. :stuck_out_tongue:

I think Afghanistan runs Linux, powered by a few camels.


$ = power. Any questions?

And microsoft’s nukes are quite buggy… So we don’t have to worry about them much.

In 1997, he may have, but that was a long time ago, in terms of pop culture, and bear in mind that the 1997 edition would have been actually written sometime in 1996. Lotta water under the bridge since 1996, lotta anti-trust lawsuits and Windows OS crashes and Microsoft security leaks. I’d say it’s just the opposite nowadays–Bill Gates is pretty much off America’s radar anymore, except for his occasional appearances in court.

Beastal, do you have a page number or anything for this? Something about it just doesn’t seem right–Guinness generally doesn’t make that sort of subjective assertion. Is it possible that there’s more to the claim than you recall–maybe, for example, they’re citing an opinion poll in which most respondents named Bill Gates as the world’s most powerful? I’d go check, but, it being Labor Day, the library where I work closed early, so I won’t get to check until tomorrow. If anyone has a copy around, a more comprehensive citation would be appreciated.

Of course, whatever Guinness meant by this claim, the debate on who is actually more powerful remains open.

So who has more money?

Bill Gates controls $100 billion in stock.

George Bush controls a trillion-dollar military that could blow it all up.

I’ll bet on Dubya.

I know this was faceitous and all . . . but I bet Bill Gates has much more direct power over his money and Microsoft than Mr. Bush has over the US military.

I can’t think of a single measure where Gates would have more power than the President of the United States. A hundred billion? George Bush personally pushed a 1.3 trillion dollar tax cut into law. He controls a trillion dollar military. His pen can add tens of billions of dollars to the budget when he wants to. He can go on TV and make a speech that can send markets into a tailspin.

It’s not even close.

Not to mention the fact that various world leaders don’t tend to consult ol’ Bill on most matters.

I suppose it depends on just how many back doors and trojans Microsoft may have built into their operating systems.

Purely hypothetically (and showing enough paranoia to justify a tin foil hat) you could argue that if they had access to the information stored on PC’s running windows, then Microsoft would have an almost unbelievably powerful resource. Obviously not as conspicuously powerful as the US military, but consider the potential for all the passwords, banking details, business plans, confidential information…you get the idea.

Andros, were * you * being facetious? The President is the * Commander-in-Chief *of the United States Military. That’s a lot of power.

What restraints, if any, exist upon him? Could he say, “Troops! UnAmerican Activites are taking place at this address in Redmond! We must eliminate the target now!” and the troops would obey him? Congress would rein him in pretty quickly, yes, but would they have to pass a special law or veto or something to do it?

There’s power, and then there’s power that can be practically used.

My point, which perhaps I was not clear on, remains–Bill, even only as Chairman and CSA, has more direct power over his own money and Microsoft as a whole than the CIC has over the US military. Or is Mr. Bush single-handedly making troop placement decisions now?