Gates as Carnegie/Rockefeller

CounterPunch sitka at
Wed Aug 4 15:00:11 PDT 1999

Monday, 2 August 1999 2:59 (GMT)

(UPI Focus)

Gates to give away fortune

LONDON, Aug. 1 (UPI) - Bill Gates, the richest man in the world,

plans to give away his $100 billion fortune, his father told the Sunday

Times of London.

In an interview published today, William Gates Sr. said his son, the

founder of Microsoft, will give most of his money to the William H.

Gates Foundation to wipe out deadly diseases such as AIDS and malaria.

The 73-year-old father of Gates said that in the next three months,

the foundation will announce a number of newly funded programs that will

go a long way toward its ultimate aim of becoming the world's largest

private charity.

Bill Gates Jr., lives with his wife, Melinda, and two children in a

mansion on the shores of Lake Washington near Seattle. The couple plans

to leave $20 million to their children.

Gates and his wife have previously funded a family charity that

currently has $10 billion in its coffers and ranks fifth in the league

of the world's philanthropic foundations.

William Gates Sr., who runs the family foundation, said one of his

son's favorite books is Andrew Carnegie's "The Gospel of Wealth," in

which the philanthropist wrote, "The man who dies rich dies in


Gates Sr. said his 43-year-old son and daughter-in-law have been

worried about world health since their visits to South Africa and India

in the mid-1990s.

Gates Sr., said the couple found themselves increasingly concerned

about the effects of disease and poverty in developing countries. "Bill

and Melinda believe that one's success is not some sort of God-given

thing," he said.

In May, the Gates Foundation donated more than $20 million to the

International AIDS Vaccine Initiative, a group based in New York that

invests money in a number of research teams looking to cure Acquired

Immune Deficiency Syndrome.

Some have criticized Gates Jr. for making relatively small donations

to charity and has been especially scorned for making donations of

Microsoft-based computers to libraries.

Gates Sr. said: "My son is going to have critics all his life

because of his wealth. But I'm optimistic now that we have put to rest

any criticism on the basis of his not being sufficiently generous. We've

pretty much drowned that out."


Copyright 1999 by United Press International.

All rights reserved.l

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