Time's Persons of the Year

Well, it's better certainly better than Dubya making last year's Time cover, isn't it? Bill + Melinda Gates and Bono have been named Persons of the Year by Time Magazine for their work on saving Africa, since most of the rest of the world has kinda forgotten about that particular continent.

Most people I've read this morning are sort of nodding and saying they seems like good choices, noting some disdain for the commercial products the people represent. Which brings up an interesting dilemma in our particular era of consumerism, I think... what do we float as acceptable products or behavior when faced with the pros and cons? How do we weigh it all out?

The Gates are by far the most philanthropic couple around. I learned from the Wal-Mart movie that they gave nearly 60% of their wealth to charitable causes one year, and their foundation is top-notch for working on issues such as the digital divide. Yet the business tactics that have brought in that crazy wealth remain questionable: remember the browser wars? And the intimidating contracts with PC manufacturers? Oh, yeah, and the fact that a lot of the software they make leaves so much to be desired?

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