Al Gore, who lost the presidency to George W. Bush in 2000, on Sunday assailed President Bush, accusing him of betraying the nation by invading Iraq. Al Gore is also a member of Apple Computer’s Board of Directors, having joined on March 19, 2003.
“‘He took America on an ill-conceived foreign adventure, dangerous to our troops, that was preordained and planned before 9-11,’ Gore told Tennessee Democrats at a party event Sunday. The former vice president said that he, like millions of others, had put partisanship aside after the September 11 terrorist attacks and wanted Bush to lead the nation. Instead, Gore shouted to the crowd, Bush ‘betrayed us,'” The Associated Press reports. Full article here.
Gore’s attacks come at a time when Apple shows increased interest in sales to government agencies. Apple was an exhibitor at FOSE 2004, a large technology trade show and conference for government professionals which took place last March 23-25 at the Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC.
“Apple Computer said… that it is experimenting with new efforts to boost sales of Macintoshes to business and government customers. Apple sales chief Tim Cook told financial analysts that the company last month launched a direct effort that’s aimed at the creative market and government entities, with 70 Apple employees working in either field sales or telephone sales,’ Ina Fried reported for CNET News.com this past November. Full article here.
Back in August 2003, The Office of Management and Budget added Linux and Mac OS to the list of supporting platforms under the Technical Reference Model of the Federal Enterprise Architecture. And, in September, MacTeens.com reported that the login interface files from a recent build of Panther contains text and images for a U.S. Government specific login interface including seals for the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Department of Defense, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and U.S. Public Health Service. Then, in October, Apple published a knowledge base article with an Installation and Setup Guide for using the Department of Defense Common Access Card with Mac OS X.
In light of Apple’s new interest in selling Macs to U.S. government entities, does it make sense to have a sitting board member accusing the sitting U.S. President of “betraying the nation?” While no one would accuse us of being Dale Carnegie honor grads, it still doesn’t seem like the greatest idea to us. Should Apple rethink the Gore appointment or should Gore, for the good of Apple, step down from the Apple Board if he wants to continue to play politics?