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Note: This is from a Slashdot article I wrote here.

Let's not forget that children are pressed into slavery in Ghana to work at cocoa farms, and that Ghana produces 90% of the world's cocoa, 30% of which is exported to the United States and used in cereal and chocolate bars. (Source: National Public Radio, 2 days ago)

Microsoft just makes software. Right?

I don't think so. They promote an ideology that is fundamentally against human nature (sharing with other people) and against the founding principle of society (people working together toward a common goal). Not only that, but they admonish people to resist sharing with others, explaining that this sharing will result in a less-than-ideal environment for corporations and other for-profit entities. Not only that, but they are attempting to enlist the government of the most economically and militarily powerful nation on Earth in their effort to stamp out this most profound human characteristic in the name of profits.

Microsoft's efforts strikes at the very core of human nature by attacking what makes us men, what has made man the builder of civilizations.

Microsoft is a corporation, a legal entity, a person in the eyes of US law, but Microsoft is not a person in the eyes of mankind, because it lacks the very characteristics of men everywhere: the ability for compassion, for selflessness, for pity, for empathy, for self-sacrifice.

Microsoft, the corporation, is but a piece of paper in a file cabinet in the office of the Secretary of State of Washington State. Yet, by amassing cash, it becomes powerful: can have spokespersons, can termminate employees, can own assets (land, buildings, vehicles, cash), and can influence political processes with cash and non-cash contributions (stuff for schools).

Microsoft corporation, in order to remain powerful, will do whatever it needs to do to keep amassing cash. This is the reason for its existence, and it will cease to exist when it can no longer amass cash. It is not enough to have some; it must continually aquire more, to insure it's own survival.

Microsoft corporation is a prime example of the struggle between man's core characteristics and corporations self-serving behavior.

Microsoft (and what it represents) is a powerful non-human entity attempting to make men forget that they are human and instead yield their assets to the corporation, without the corporation being accountable to them.

This is why this fight is so important. It's not about money (people in general understand that money only goes so far toward happiness), it's about being better human beings, and being free from oppressive systems.

In short: it's a struggle to be human and free.

No wonder some people are obsessed with it.

© 2001 Chris Mahan