Bill Gates Gets Angry

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Anyone who hoped Microsoft might drop the arrogant tone that got them into so much trouble with Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson last time around will be sorely disappointed by Bill Gates' article in this week's Economist. In his most extensive defense of his company yet, the tousle-haired billionaire pulls no punches with the Justice Department. Gates starts by calling the DOJ's antitrust action "the government's lawsuit on behalf of Netscape," and stays firmly in that vein throughout.

Gates' response to charges of bundling Explorer with Windows in violation of an earlier consent decree? "There are absolutely no laws against innovating," he says. The accusation that he tried to push Netscape into a carve-up-the-web conspiracy? "An outrageous lie," says Gates, because Netscape wunderkind Marc Andreessen sent a post-meeting e-mail saying "we should talk more often." And those e-mails where Microsoft execs admit tying IE to Win98? "Taken out of context." No word on whether Judge Jackson is convinced.