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Email Henry Platt
Email L. Henry Platt, Jr.
  Henry Platt

MICROSOFT

Although the President of the United States has little direct control over cases like the present one against Bill Gates, I feel my opinion expressed here will benefit the American people and help my readers understand my motives and goals. I believe that even the President of the United States enjoys the freedom of speech to comment on the deeds and misdeeds of other branches of the federal and state governments. By not prohibiting the President from such comments, the Constitution of the United States expressly allows and protects the rights of the President and all other people to make respectful comments in appropriate places.

I wish to be labeled a CONSTITUTIONALIST. Many mediamongers feel a need to hang a label on everybody so they can attribute and impugn unearned qualities or deficiencies to some individual. By assuming the label of Constitutionalist, I can and will define the label by my own writings and opinions. I alone, personally revised and published "The REVISED CONSTITUTION of THE UNITED STATES of AMERICA" on July 4, 1972. After 28 years, I believe, it continues to be the best constitution ever published for our nation. When initially published, the REVISED CONSTITUTION was mailed or carried to ever Governor of every state and every Senator of the United States. Since that time some of the ideas and concepts have already become part of the body of law and tradition of our nation.

The Constitution (both 1787 and 1972) protects the property of all the people from being taken without due process. Unfortunately, today's Injustice Department seems to feel it has the power to simply decree half of Bill Gates' Microsoft investment away.

I also like the label PRACTICALIST. In short: Let's be real! At the beginning of the twentieth century Congress and President Theodore Roosevelt enacted the Hepburn Railway Rate Act which remedied the abusive practices of some railroads that raised and lowered rates to squeeze maximum profits (especially) from farmers, I feel this is one of the best use stories of the Sherman AntiTrust Act (signed into law by Benjamin Harrison). One of the other best known antitrust actions of that era was the famed breakup of Standard Oil, and the benefit to the consumer in that case is still questionable.

I have reviewed these century old cases because times have charged. When the Sherman AntiTrust Act was signed, it took a week to get to London and two or three to get to Tokyo. Today it takes only hours. Today a consumer in Florida might as easily buy a car built in Lansing, Michigan or Seoul, Korea. America is no longer the only game in town. Consider the Mitsubishi Corporation: They build ships, airplanes, televisions, electronics, etc. Show me a Chevrolet television or a ship built by Ford.

The purpose of any government is to provide a stable environment where its citizens and its manufacturing and commerce can flourish. Every government should enact laws to protect and promote the constructive and beneficial pursuits of its constituents. I feel that the current assault by the Injustice Department against Bill Gates and the Microsoft Corporation is less of a just cause and more of an employment guarantee for many, many lawyers who might otherwise do something more useful.

The good news is that I expect reasonable minds to reason with Mr. Gates to change or mend certain business practices which, although common in the industry, have irritated certain corporate entities. Ford Motor offers the Lincoln automobile with an automatic transmission standard. If you want a five-speed stick, you will have to find an after-market facility to install the stick transmission. If Netscape Browser doesn't run on top of Windows right out of the box, perhaps the Netscape program needs to be modified. I wouldn't expect Windows (out of the box) to run on an iMac.

The Justice Department needs to be focused on justice -- not retribution! Besides, with 25% of the Windows in circulation being counterfeit, how much justice has Microsoft been getting anyhow? Let's not hamstring American industries for being successful. Let us criticize and even prosecute them for violations of law, but let us temper justice with mercy and give Americans an even chance in the fierce global economy.

 
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© L. Henry Platt, Jr.