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1994 Fools: File 1--Bill Gates' Gov't Appointment (Apr 1 Press Release)



[From Computer underground Digest    Sun  Apr 03, 1994   Volume 6 : Issue 29 ISSN  1004-042X]

Date: 01 Apr 94 16:13:22 EST
From: Urnst Couch  <70743.1711@COMPUSERVE.COM>
Subject: File 1--Bill Gates' Gov't Appointment (Apr 1 Press Release)

                    "GOVERNMENT TO INTELLECTUALIZE
             INFORMATION HIGHWAY THROUGH MENTUFACTURING"

(AP)-In an unexpected White House press conference on April 1,
Vice-President Albert Gore announced Microsoft's Bill Gates would be
named director of a new agency designed to regulate and stimulate the
development of the Information Superhighway.

"If you have a personal computer, chances are that Mr. Gates and
Microsoft Corp. are already a part of your life," said Gore during the
conference.  "In many cases, the personal computer is the on-ramp to
the information highway, the conduit through which much of the
national intellectual product of the future will flow.  This
intellectual product, or property, is manufactured, but not - in the
conventional sense - through machinery.  Rather, the commerce of the
information highway is the harvest of the mind, our mental facilities.
'Mentufacturing' is the word the PR backroom guys -- have
coined.  Mr. Gates's excellence in the field make him the logical
candidate for a new project to guide and accelerate the nation's
transition to a mentufacturing industrial base."

Gore went on to explain how Gates, along with a core consulting group
consisting of telecommunications guru John Malone and cellular phone
titan Craig McCaw, would make up the industry-government interface for
the agency, tentatively named the Ministry of Mentufacturing,
Organization, Networking and Electronic Exchange (MO*MONEE).

The ministry is to be located at 2001 L Street NW, Washington, D.C.,
alongside offices of the Business Software Alliance.

The initial mandate of the ministry, said Gore, would be to work up a
plan for the issuing of Licenses of Mentufactury, which would become
necessary - just as the motor vehicle operator's license is a must for
drivers - for the operation of on-line services or the production of
intellectual "soft goods."  Gore said that he, along with Congress,
would move briskly toward legislation requiring Licenses of
Mentufactury for all computer industry and information highway
entrepeneurs by late 1995.

Roger Thrush, an administrative lieutenant speaking for the absent
Gates, who was vacationing in Hawaii, explained how licensing would
work.

"It really is simpler than it sounds," said Thrush.  "We envision
several classes of mentufacturing, the primary of which constitutes
existing on-line services and retail software developers in the
Fortune 500. For the most part, this group has already been granted
provisionary licenses with permanent approval contingent only upon
minor structural and operational changes which we think will be no
inconvenience to implement.  For example, most of the captains of the
information industry already have the capability to suborn their
telecommunications feeds to something we call the Microserve and
Mentufacturing Market Organizational Network - or MAMMON - backbone, a
super-net which will make the registration of Licenses of Mentufactury
electronic, instantaneous and economical.

"For the small businessman - or millions of home hobbyists - there
will be a different class of license.  This should make it easier for
the government to distinguish legitimate mentufacturing needs from
socially heretical activity.  For example, we would consider the
bulletin board system application for a Licence of Mentufactury from a
member of the North American Man-Boy Love Association frivolous.  And
this has an added benefit, because it allows for interactive,
non-intrusive patrol of the information highway, thus hindering those
who would use it for soliciting, piracy, or the dissemination of
private, sensitive or proprietary information.  Of course, the small
businessman with a 5-6 line service will find the legislation
transparent, which should make the cyber civil libertarians happy,"
Thrush laughed.

Licenses of Mentufactury will be assigned tariffs based on a sliding
scale beginning at $500, said Thrush.  Fees would go to a government
superfund, controlled by MO*MONEE. The superfund would be used for
federal employee reimbursement and seed cash for promising
breakthroughs in mentufacturing.

Silicon Valley venture capitalist and ex-Gates paramour Ann Winblad
said in interview, "Bill has wanted to adopt the mindset of a true
visionary, to take even greater risks, for a long time. No one can
doubt the scope of his ambition and his great admiration for Henry
Ford is likewise well known.  Like that entrepeneur, Bill wants to
move Americans forward a quantum jump.  Mentufacturing could be the
answer for him, as well as the nation."

"Mentufacturing mania will probably pique everyone's fancy in the next
few months," said computer magazine writer John Dvorak. "It's a great
concept, but making it concrete may take a little longer."

"I believe everyone from education to industry will rush to go
'mental' on the Information Superhighway, now that the Vice President
has put this welcome proposal onto the playing field," said
Congressman Edward Markey (Dem.), also in attendance at the press
meeting.

Gore concluded the press conference by paraphrasing the Grolier
dictionary's definition of "mentufacture."  "To mentufacture is to
engage in the _manufacture_ of the God which resides in every man: the
fruit of the soul, our minds, ourselves.  Thank you ladies and
gentlemen."

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