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30 August 2009

i can't make you love me / if you don't / i can't make your heart feel / something it won't

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I Can't Make You Love Me

written by Mike Reid and Allen Shamblin

introduced by Bonnie Raitt on "Luck of the Draw" (1991)
cover by Prince on "Emancipation" (1996)

turn down the lights
turn down the bed

turn down these voices
inside my head

lay down with me
tell me no lies
just hold me close
don't patronize
don't patronize me

'cause i can't make you love me
if you don't
i can't make your heart feel
something it won't

here in the dark, in these final hours
i will lay down my heart
and I'll feel the power
but you won't
no you won't

'cause i can't make you love me
if you don't

i'll close my eyes
then i won't see
the love you don't feel
when you're holding me

morning will come
and i'll do what's right
just give me till then
to give up this fight
and i will give up this fight

'cause i can't make you love me
if you don't
i can't make your heart feel
something it won't
here in the dark, in these final hours

i will lay down my heart
and I'll feel the power
But you won't
no you won't

~ ~ ~

Wikipedia:

"I Can't Make You Love Me" is a 1991 popular song, written by Mike Reid and Allen Shamblin and recorded by Bonnie Raitt on her Luck of the Draw album from that year.

In August 2000, Mojo magazine voted "I Can't Make You Love Me" #8 on its The 100 Greatest Songs Of All Time list.[1] The song is ranked #331 on the Rolling Stone magazine's list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

The idea for the song came to Reid while reading an article about a man arrested for getting drunk and shooting at his girlfriend's car. The judge asked him if he had learned anything, to which he replied, "I learned, Your Honor, that you can't make a woman love you if she don't."[2]

Reid and Shamblin were both country music songwriters, who according to some accounts originally wrote the song as a fast, bluegrass number. Upon slowing down the tempo considerably, they realized the song gained considerable power. It then made its way to Raitt.

A pensive ballad, "I Can't Make You Love Me" was recorded against a quiet electric piano-based arrangement, with prominent piano fills and interpolations supplied by Bruce Hornsby. The singer depicts a now one-sided romantic relationship about to end in soft but brutally honest terms:

Turn down these voices, inside my head -

Lay down with me ... tell me no lies.
Just hold me close,
don't patronize ... don't patronize me

'Cause I can't make you love me,
If you don't.

Raitt recorded the vocal in just one take in the studio, later saying that it was so sad a song that she couldn't recapture the emotion: "We'd try to do it again and I just said, 'You know, this ain't going to happen.'"[3]

The song was a big hit for Raitt, reaching #18 on the U.S. pop singles chart and #6 on the Adult Contemporary chart, and helped solidify her remarkable late-in-career commercial success that had begun two years before. In the time since, "I Can't Make You Love Me" has gone on to become a pop standard and a mainstay of adult contemporary radio formats.

For Raitt, the song was notoriously difficult to sing, due to its required vocal range, difficult phrasing and breathing, and the emotional content involved. At the televised Grammy Awards of 1992 Raitt performed it in an even more austere setting than on record, with just her and Hornsby highlighted. As she negotiated the final vocal line, she let out a big audible and visible sigh of relief that she had successfully gotten through it. Raitt has continued to sing the song in all her concert tours.

“I mean, 'I Can't Make You Love Me' is no picnic. I love that song, so does the audience. So it's almost a sacred moment when you share that, that depth of pain with your audience. Because they get really quiet, and I have to summon ... some other place in order to honor that space.”

— Raitt, 2002 NPR interview[4]

Although Hornsby had no hand in writing the song, his piano part on it became associated with him, and on his own subsequent tours he would often perform it whenever he had a female backing singer in his band to take on the vocal.

While Raitt's "I Can't Make You Love Me" was not a big success in the United Kingdom, as part of George Michael's 1997 double a-side single "Older / I Can't Make You Love Me", it reached the Top 3 of the UK Singles Chart. It has also been recorded by a number of other artists, including Prince, Bonnie Tyler, Kenny Rogers, Kimberley Locke and Gina G to name a few. Saxophonist Candy Dulfer has also recorded an instrumental version. A version by the band Venice was featured over the end credits of the controversial film Boxing Helena.


the President of Nigeria is very pissed off at Bob

[e-mail received today]

OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT

FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA
ASO- ROCK VILLA, ABUJA (F.C.T)

From The Desk of the President
Alhaji Umaru Yar'Adua
Attn: Beneficiary,

I have received several complains from the Ministry of Finance stating that you have refused to make the payment of $180.00 as demanded to enable the remittance of $3,500.000.00 (Three Million Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars only) due to you as an accrued interest
on your payment.

Following the mandate received from the World Bank, IMF and the European Union, I have authorized the funds to be remitted into your account immediate you make the payment of $180.00 which represents the subsidized cost of issuing International Payment Clearance Permit on your behalf. I do not want to hear this complains again that you have refused to follow the order. Immediately you make the payment of $180.00 to Mr. Vincent Ubani, he would issue you with a payment reference through the Federal Reserve Bank in USA to credit your account from our Oil Reserve Account.

You are strictly advised to contact Mr. vincent Ubani who is the IMF/World Bank representative in Nigeria with the detailed information and confirm to him that you have received a confidential memo from my office to carry out my order and send him your payment reference number which is (FGN/4494/3,500.000.00. Contact Mr. Tel:234 80 380 78311

Email: (info.imfunited@gmail.com)
(info.imfunited@gmail.com)

Note: Your payment is schedule to hold within 72 hours immediately you reach Mr. Vincent Ubani with the above mention requirement You are advise to contact him now before it is too late.

SINCERELY YOURS,

Prof. Babagana Kingibe
for: ALHAJI UMARU YAR'ADUA (GCFR, OFRN, MMNI, MOFRN)
President/Commander in Chief of Armed Forces Council

CC: The Senate President
CC: Mr. Vincent Ubani.

John Calipari: the pond scum king of college basketball

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John Calipari is a USA college basketball coach, apparently the highest-paid college b-ball coach in the nation.

He has the unique distinction of being the only USA college basketball coach to have two teams -- the University of Massachusetts, and Memphis, Tennessee -- have their winning seasons subsequently removed from the NCAA records book because of subsequently-discovered violations of player rules during their championship seasons.

I live down the road from the University of Massachusetts, whose super-winning basketball team was Calipari's first corrupt whorehouse clown circus and university scandal. He was paid huge sums to take the U-Mass team to the Final Four -- college b-ball's equivalent of the Super Bowl -- and he did.

Later the NCAA erased the team's achievements from the records book. You have to buy an old edition of the NCAA records to see U-Mass win.

Same with Memphis.

I thought college had something to do with going to classes, getting good grades, and graduating with skills you could use in life.

Calipari suffers from no such hallucination.

All his schools are taxpayer-funded public universities and colleges.

===============

Yahoo! Sports
Thursday 27 August 2009

Classic Calipari

by Jason King

LEXINGTON, Kentucky -- Moments after Wednesday’s practice at the Joe Craft Center, new Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari stepped into an elevator, leaned his head against the back wall and sighed.

“You have no idea how good that just felt,” he said, smiling wearily. “You have no idea.”

Indeed, for the first time in nearly three months, it was all about basketball again for Calipari. It was all about Kentucky.

The talk about the messy situation at Memphis, where his former team had its 2008 Final Four appearance vacated by the NCAA last week for using an ineligible player, was pushed aside. The newspaper columns questioning his character and ethics were muted.

On his first day of practice with his new team, the master deflector kept shifting the focus back to his improved situation – one which makes him the nation’s highest-paid coach at one of its most high-profile programs. He has brought in the most touted recruiting class in the country to boot.

Controversy? What controversy? Calipari is king of the college basketball world.

Asked if the criticism he received during the offseason would motivate him, Calipari said: “Everyone says I’m better when things are swirling, that I’m not as good when the waters are too calm. That’s what they’re saying to me. I don’t think I’m that way purposely. But ..."

Not many coaches will come under as much scrutiny this season as Calipari. Two months after Kentucky plucked him from Memphis to replace Billy Gillispie, the NCAA revealed that the SAT score of former Tigers star Derrick Rose had been invalidated amid allegations that Rose had someone take the test for him.

Rose was deemed retroactively ineligible for the 2007-08 season, meaning Memphis had to vacate its record 38 victories along with its appearance in the Final Four, where it lost to Kansas in the title game.

Although he wasn’t accused of any wrongdoing, Calipari became the only coach in history to have to vacate two Final Four appearances [the same punishment was levied against his 1996 Massachusetts squad].

Calipari issued a statement on his website last week expressing his displeasure with the NCAA’s ruling and said he would have no further comment on the matter. He stubbornly stuck to that stance Wednesday.

While the coach has remained silent, his detractors have been loud. College basketball fans are using words such as “shady” and “slimy” to describe Calipari on internet message boards while others are attacking his character on radio call-in shows.

One minute on Wednesday, Calipari said he didn’t pay attention to the barbs. The next, he discussed how painful the situation has been for his family. His angst was evident when asked about the way he’s been portrayed by the media.

“There’s [one] guy I don’t like,” Calipari said. “I know he’s a scoundrel. If I keep reading it, I’m going to punch him right in his mouth if I see him. So I’m better [off] not reading it.”

Still, Calipari will not to respond directly to questions about the situation at Memphis.

“There is no response,” Calipari said. “My friends, the people that I’m close with … they don’t need an explanation. If I do try to give one, they think I’m dumb. They say, ‘I’ve known you 35 years. You don’t need to explain anything to me.’

“The people that want to believe something else? They’re not going to listen to my explanation anyway. They don’t care. They don’t want to hear it.”

That’s Calipari at his best … answering a question without really answering it, then spinning things forward. That’s exactly what’s taking place at Kentucky, where he’s become a hero without ever coaching a game.

Maybe that’s why Calipari still seems so upbeat despite the events of the past few months.

Even with two stripped Final Four appearances, Calipari finds himself in the best situation of his career. The Wildcats will be ranked anywhere from No. 1 to No. 5 in most preseason polls.

He’s enjoying rock-star status in the Commonwealth, drawing so many fans at booster events that he’s turning down handshakes because he said his palm is sore.

“I’ve spent the last five weeks traveling the state, kissing babies,” Calipari said. “I feel like I’m running for governor.”

Freshman Eric Bledsoe had always heard stories about the passion Kentucky fans have for their basketball team. But he didn’t realize how deep it ran until a few weeks ago, when he and teammates John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins walked into Tolly-Ho, a popular greasy spoon near campus.

“People stared at us for a few minutes and then started asking for autographs,” Bledsoe said. “This one guy came up and tried to take our picture, but his hand was shaking so bad it was probably blurry. I couldn’t believe how nervous he was around us.”

After years of toiling in mediocrity, Kentucky fans couldn’t be more excited about the 2009-10 season. While much of the talk is about the Wildcats’ vaunted recruiting class, the main reason for the buzz is Calipari, whose 159 wins the last five seasons are the most by any Division I head coach.

“He’s the biggest celebrity in Lexington right now,” freshman Jon Hood said. “Granted, there really aren’t many other celebrities in Lexington. But if there were, [Calipari] would still be at the top.”

While past coaches such as Tubby Smith and Gillispie have shied away from the spotlight that goes along with being Kentucky’s coach, Calipari seems to have embraced it. If anything, the love he’s received from fans has been therapeutic.

Less than a week after the NCAA announced its penalty against his former Memphis team, Calipari couldn’t have been more upbeat as he prepared for his first set of workouts with his new players Wednesday.

Calipari began the day with a three-mile jog around Kentucky’s campus before hosting an hour-long question-and-answer session with local media members, who were instructed not to bring up the situation at Memphis. Reporters were also invited to take part in an on-court clinic during which Calipari would demonstrate his dribble-drive offense.

“I want them to understand what they’re covering,” he said later with a chuckle. “The only catch is that each of them has to step in and take a charge.”

Administrators ordered pizza after the interview session, but Calipari – who is monitoring his carbohydrate intake – retreated to his office with a grilled chicken salad. As he picked away at his lunch, Calipari revealed that he has more than 650,000 followers on Twitter and nearly 60,000 Facebook friends.

Calipari said fans have turned out in droves to hear him speak in small Kentucky towns such as Owensboro and Hazard and Pikeville, which drew a crowd of 1,500.

“What do they have, 8,000 [in their town]?” Calipari said. “I walk in saying, ‘I’m not signing every ball and I’m not signing every hat.’ But I go in and sign every ball and every hat, because the people are so excited that I’d almost feel bad [if I didn’t]. I owe them the best that I can give them.”

Calipari said the vibe at each speaking engagement is the same.

“What surprises me is the hunger these people have for this to be significant again,” he said. “I haven’t followed the program. I was doing my own thing. But it’s almost like they weren’t having fun for five years.

“You want to calm everybody down, yet they’ve been in a funk for so long, you almost want to say, ‘I’ll let it go for another month.’”

Premature as it may be, it’s hard not to understand the optimism of the Wildcats’ fans. One season after failing to reach the NCAA tournament for the first time in 17 years, Kentucky will have arguably the most talented – albeit inexperienced – team in the country in 2009-10.

Wall, a freshman point guard, is projected as the No. 1 pick in the 2010 NBA draft. Forwards Cousins and junior Patrick Patterson are also predicted to be first-rounders, while center Daniel Orton and guard Eric Bledsoe could achieve similar feats as sophomores.

Watch the Wildcats practice for just a few minutes, and it’s clear their athleticism and will humiliate any team that attempts to guard them man-to-man. Along with having one of the nation’s strongest, most physical frontcourts, Kentucky’s backcourt will be one of the quickest in college basketball.

Calipari, though, doesn’t want fans to look too far ahead.

“The people are so passionate and worked up,” he said. “You want to say, ‘Yo, these are all new kids. We haven’t even figured out how we’re going to play. We haven’t picked up one ball yet. I hope they get along. Who’s playing? Who’s not playing?’

“I don’t know anything, but [everyone] is thinking like we’re going to win all 40.”

Wednesday night, a few hours after the last group of Kentucky’s players concluded practice, Calipari planned to summon the group together for a movie night. He wanted them to watch “Remember the Titans,” the legendary flick about a high school football team starring Denzel Washington.

“Our team is almost exactly like that team,” Calipari said. “We’re blending in six new guys with six old guys along with some new coaches. Right now everyone is probably worrying about their positions and how many minutes they’re going to get.

“For this to work – for us to become a team – all the agendas have to be gone.”

As much as he wants his players to develop a sense of family, Calipari is adapting to change, too. The process is going smoothly.

He purchased a house less than a mile from Kentucky’s campus and is slowly forming a list of some of his favorite local restaurants. He misses his buddies in Memphis and sometimes wishes he could make his regular morning stop for coffee and small talk with the regulars at Gibson’s Donuts.

“We spent 10 years in Memphis,” said Calipari, who is 50. “We were so engrained in the community. But this is the right place for us [now]. No question. My wife feels that way. We all do.”

Not just personally, but professionally, too.

Now that he’s in a Big Six conference such as the SEC, Calipari said he’ll never have to fight and “kiss boots” like he did at Memphis to make sure his team gets the respect it deserves.

So content is Calipari at Kentucky that he even mentioned that it could be his last job.

“I’m not going to be coaching when I’m 70 and I doubt I’ll be coaching when I’m 60,” he said. “If I ever feel dread in going down on that court, it’s time to give it up. I don’t need the money. I don’t feel like I have anything left to prove coaching-wise. I’m doing it because I love what I’m doing.”

And – no matter what’s happened in the past – Kentucky fans will love him for it.

As long as he wins.

“Thirty years from now, [reporters] won’t be writing and I won’t be coaching,” Calipari said. “At that point it’ll be about ‘What really happened at UMass [and Memphis]? How did those kids turn out? How did they do academically? What did we do for the campus?’ That’s what will happen.

“You take solace in that and sleep with a clear conscience.”

And keep spinning along.

- 30 -

26 August 2009

Another reason to buy a Mac: Microsoft will chop your head off and stick somebody else's head on your neck

Click image, gets bigger.

Beyond Binary

column by Ina Fried
CNET News [tech on-line news service]
25 August 2009

Microsoft apologizes for
race-swap photo incident

by Ina Fried

Microsoft apologized Tuesday for using photo editing techniques to change the race of a person depicted on the company's Web site.

In a photo on the company's U.S. Web site, three businesspeople -- one black, one white and one Asian -- are shown as part of a pitch for Microsoft's business productivity software.

In the same photo on the site of Microsoft's Polish subsidiary, a white head is placed over the black person's body, although the hand is not changed.

The move sparked controversy after it was noticed, quickly making the rounds on Twitter and various Web sites.

"We are looking into the details of this situation," a Microsoft representative told CNET News. "We apologize and are in the process of pulling down the image" from the Polish site. Microsoft also apologized on its corporate Twitter feed.

Here's the U.S. site photo [a]nd here's the one from the Polish site [see images at top of post]:

During her years at CNET News, Ina Fried has changed beats several times, changed genders once, and covered both of the Pirates of Silicon Valley. These days, most of her attention is focused on Microsoft. E-mail Ina at: ina.fried@cnet.com

- 30 -

Add a Comment Showing 1 of 3 pages (100 Comments)

by M C August 25, 2009 5:12 PM PDT
Who exactly was protesting this? Poland's African-Polish community?


by TinyIoda August 25, 2009 5:29 PM PDT
@: M C...
i dont care what others say... that was great!!!!

Name me one magazine... One Website... One Anything... that doesnt touch up every picture the put up anywhere... do you really think the girls you ogle every day look exactly like that.... HA... call me a racist if you want but publishers ALWAYS play to the demographic!!

by gwailo247 August 25, 2009 5:33 PM PDT
You'd be surprised. Its not your grandpa's Europe.

by tektaktyks August 25, 2009 5:38 PM PDT
no it was barry McCaca @ twitter (vip) i think since he was quoted on cnet

ps im rotfl @ the whole story

by jaguar717 August 25, 2009 10:42 PM PDT
Maybe the African-American-Polish "community"?

Ha. I don't think anybody else does this fake hyphenated-Americanism thing. "Oh yeah, I was born down under and moved to Europe for a while, now I'm on my way to Mexico where I'll be an Australian-German-Mexican."

by CPGUY August 26, 2009 2:57 AM PDT
The Kashyyyk population must be up in arms about this one:
http://img402.imageshack.us/img402/7308/microsoftlocalisation.jpg

by nastynewt August 26, 2009 7:13 AM PDT
It's sad that the Chewbacca photoshop looks better than the MS one. Loved it!

by rdupuy11 August 26, 2009 7:44 AM PDT
@Tinyloda,

Most corporate boardrooms have a few 'white males'. But the adverts that people are describing as looking 'american' what they mean, is they have the american penchant for false diversity.

Even if, the last I checked, there are a lot of white men in America...same as Poland, we don't necessarily want our photographs to reflect that. The U.S. is 68% white, 12% black and 5% Asian.

It's not that including one white male is going to raise a storm of controversy...of course it won't. But, in general there is this kind of faked out diversity that we value so much in America, that other countries just find strange...and I for one tend to agree with them, it is forced, and a bit strange.

I doubt they really wanted to get rid of the black guy, they just wanted to include one white guy in the photo....probalby seemed logical to get rid of the black guy, since there are so few black people in Poland.

by colamix August 26, 2009 2:57 PM PDT
Microsoft is not the first or last to use crass manipulation to play on demographics. But as the company who sicked its army of lawyers on teenager Mike Rowe and countless other evil deeds, Microsoft should know it's the target of rightful hate and things like this will get them bad press.

by tektaktyks August 26, 2009 5:18 PM PDT
chewie is great

by discocow August 25, 2009 5:15 PM PDT
OK, as a lukewarm defense of Microsoft here, this is a problem my company runs into as well. We try to keep our US marketing pieces representationally diverse, using people from various races and ethnicities in the photos when we can. But then when you want to use the same piece in some international markets it can look "too American", especially in countries that don't have many (or any) people of the ethnicities shown. If you're on a tight budget you really don't have much choice, and in fact you have the same problem with very small local companies - for example a small Mexican or Taiwanese firm might purchase online image libraries for use in their marketing materials, and it's hard to find economical pictures with non-American ethnicities.

Still, Microsoft is not exactly a low budget company, so this is clearly a mistake in their case.

Chip @ Computer Troubleshooters


by Super2online August 26, 2009 7:53 AM PDT
I purchase hundreds of stock photos every month for my business and I can tell you that it can be difficult to find stock photography that provides a balanced ethnic portrayal for every situation a business will need photos for. You can research this for yourself. It won't take long to see the problem. I have talked to photographers about the situation and they state it can be difficult to provide since you are limited by the agency's providing models. Agencies however run into the same issue themselves.

That being said, Microsoft (or any company for that matter) can stop these types of problems by ensuring their people adhere to policies prohibiting this type of stuff.

by celticbrewer August 26, 2009 8:26 AM PDT
Prohibiting what type of stuff? Reflecting the country's population? If the ads were for China, they'd probably put more Asian people in it. If it was Africa, there'd be more Africans.

MS has nothing to apologize for and shouldn't have taken the photo down.

The title is "Empower Your People" not: Empower a population that doesn't reflect your country.

by Castrella August 26, 2009 1:16 PM PDT
I've worked for an advertising agency that had Microsoft as a client. When doing print for them, we were forced to select images from Microsoft's own media base. Which was very diverse, with almost all images containing people of african and east-asian descent.
This was always awkward here in Norway, and I'd assume many European countries where the African population is much smaller. Using pictures like this sends a message that "we don't care enough about your tiny market to get pictures that are relevant for you".
We never retouched, but did use certain images that weren't as blatantly American over and over again.
This is just Microsoft US marketing branch being ignorant of other cultures. They could easily afford to take pictures that their different markets can relate to.

by gameking23 August 25, 2009 5:23 PM PDT
I realy do not care about the whole race thing, but to note the lighting on the dubbed one is not very good quality. considering on how the lighting is hiting everyone the guy in the middle does look out of place.

by EcuadorHomesOnline August 26, 2009 8:27 AM PDT
You're right - the light in the scene is hitting everyone on the right side but the new guy is lit from the left. And the new guy isn't nearly as handsome as the black guy is, he looks like a dweeb :-)

by shycelticwitch August 26, 2009 8:43 AM PDT
LOL and people scoffed at me when I said you should need a professional license to drive Photoshop!!!

by fafafooey August 25, 2009 5:26 PM PDT
Did Michael Jackson have to apologize after he switched his race???

by tektaktyks August 25, 2009 5:36 PM PDT
and to whom: whites,blacks or asians?

by zmjman08 August 25, 2009 6:02 PM PDT
rofl epic!

by zhouij August 25, 2009 9:49 PM PDT
I'd say he should apologize to Asians. Because he's been black, and then he turned white, but he never became Asian. That's very discriminating.

by Mr. Dee August 25, 2009 10:43 PM PDT
Michael Jackson did not change his skin color on purpose. He suffered from a disease called vitiligo where the pigmentation of his skin started losing its melanin. It can even affect people of Caucasian race, they are attached with the name albino, that's basically what Michael became. Yes, it was possible for him to reverse some of the pigmentation back to his true skin color, but it would have been extremely difficult, its much easier to just turn the skin pigment full white and be done with it.

by NarukiOni August 25, 2009 11:34 PM PDT
While Jackson may have had vitiligo, it is not called "albinism" in white people. Those are two entirely different diseases!

For one thing, you are born an albino, but vitiligo doesn't start at birth.

by unskinnybob August 26, 2009 12:27 AM PDT
vitiligo? It's called skin bleech. More and more African Americans suffer from it. Explain the nose.

by greeneres August 26, 2009 3:32 AM PDT
good point...MS should not have to apologize. how come everything has to be about race...i'm black and so what the black guy got edited. nobody died and it's not the end of the world

by Mr. Dee August 25, 2009 5:26 PM PDT
I don't find the race swap strange, its called marketing and demographics. For instance, I live in the Caribbean, if you go to Microsoft's Jamaican website, you are likely to see black people there. In some ways I feel more comfortable seeing this than seeing Asians or Caucasians because I consciously know that I live in a country where the natives are black people and I expect the local employees selling Microsoft products here to be mostly black.

Its just like Apple using native races for Mac vs PC in the UK or Japan. If Apple had used John and Justin in the UK, would there be an uproar because they don't have an accent like people from the UK? Same applies to Japan and don't sense any form of racism, just plain marketing.


by tundraboy August 26, 2009 7:31 AM PDT
Okay it's demographics then. How come the black guy got photoshopped but not the Asian? Oh but maybe Krakow has been overrun by Chinese and silly you, you kept it a secret.

by rzgar_espo August 25, 2009 5:43 PM PDT
It has nothing to do with racism. In pollen market , using a African faces is little unusual. I'm from Kurdistan and in our market you will never see an African face in market or affiches or any website not because we're racist but only it can make impression in kurd customers, its psychological thing.
But Microsoft deserve to be hated


by NarukiOni August 25, 2009 11:35 PM PDT
So, pretty much because it's a racist thing, then.

by fryarmier August 25, 2009 5:49 PM PDT
Thisisaproblem?Getoverit.Findsomethingelsetogetworkedupabout/


by gareth_pn August 26, 2009 1:31 AM PDT
Like a broken space bar on your keyboard?

by August 26, 2009 8:05 AM PDT
gareth_pn ftw...epic response. Had me in stiches (not being sarcastic!)

by Freiheit13 August 25, 2009 5:51 PM PDT
"...change the race of a person depicted..."

They changed someone's race? From human to what?

by timber2005 August 25, 2009 7:26 PM PDT
That's species ><

by baggyguy1218 August 25, 2009 8:41 PM PDT HAHAHAHA FROM HUMAN TO WHAT!! Thats friggin classic...tell'em what he wins Timber2005.

by Jack K1 August 25, 2009 6:07 PM PDT Big whup.

by flaker55 August 25, 2009 6:25 PM PDT Why should anyone care about this. Just get over it.

by damiandennison August 25, 2009 6:26 PM PDT I just wish we as a people could get pass this race thing and stop wasting time. We have been here on this earth long enough now to know it does not matter. It does not say who you are or what you are.

by t8 August 25, 2009 6:47 PM PDT Well said. Many people use the excuse of race for all sorts of bad behaviour. Each person is different and should be judged according to their character.

by Tradeur August 25, 2009 6:29 PM PDT Are there a lot of Asians in Poland? How come they did not alter the image of the Asian guy?

by Hernys August 25, 2009 7:14 PM PDT He was not in the center of the picture. I didn't even notice him.

by kavehsun August 26, 2009 2:55 PM PDT A lots Vietnamese and Chinese live there

by August 25, 2009 6:36 PM PDT hmm cant tell for sure, but is that a mac laptop in a microsoft add :)?

by August 25, 2009 6:37 PM PDT "ad" of course

by Hernys August 25, 2009 7:15 PM PDT Maybe it is, Microsoft does sell products for Apple computers.

by t8 August 25, 2009 6:46 PM PDT Poland doesn't have a Afro population. This is hardly racist, it is practicle and representing the their demographic. Not sure what the asian population in Poland is however.

by kavehsun August 26, 2009 2:56 PM PDT 1+ million asian

by inachu August 25, 2009 6:57 PM PDT Some countries to this day do not have any black people and for those who have never seen one may feel alienated by the picture and will never be secured as a customer. It seems Microsoft does not have a demographics dept. Really now Would you place an all white ad in an all black country? I have been to China and have seen some all white TV ads and they look VERY silly.

by t8 August 25, 2009 8:03 PM PDT I come from a country with very few negorids. When I see advetising in my country that has a negro in it, I am not offended at all, but I do get the feeling that it is Americans marketing to me as oposed to a local company marketing to me. It also seems quite cheap because using a pic with a racial group that doesn't exist in your country makes you think that the photo came from a stock library rather than taking pics of locals, especially if they are being passed off as locals. I am defending Microsoft on this one. In this instance, I don't see any wrong here which is unusual for Microsoft because they have a track record for wrongs.

by drbyte August 25, 2009 7:07 PM PDT Now that's change!

by PixP August 25, 2009 7:28 PM PDT lol opppps!

by jonquilmcd August 25, 2009 8:33 PM PDT There's nothing wrong with this. It's Poland... I doubt there's very many black people there and to place one in such an environment comes out as strange and sticks out like a sore thumb in a situation which you want the customer to feel like they can identify with you.

by lordmorgul August 25, 2009 8:39 PM PDT Zero 'racism' issue in this article... and shame on cnet and all the other sites posting spamming this issue as if it was worth discussing. It does not help fix REAL racial issues in America by calling this non-issue what it is not. This article (NOT the ad itself) clouds the issues and further promotes bigotry. I am very thankful I loaded this page blocking all ads since promoting cnet in the slightest for this stupidity would pain me.

by jonny-b2 August 25, 2009 8:46 PM PDT Changing the race was the correct thing to do for the Polish market. In marketing localization is the key, Microsoft changed the language of the web site and changed the image to better reflect the target demographics. I do not see why would they apologize for that. They should stick to their decision and tell how it is. This has nothing to do with racism and is indeed a smart practice. jonny@cryptoheaven.com

Showing 1 of 3 pages (100 Comments)


25 August 2009

PIZZAQ -- drill a hole in your nostril / ASL sign

A guest on BBC's "Top Gear," an actor, studied American Sign Language / ASL for a stage production of "Children of a Lesser God." While he chatted with the host, he made this ASL sign.

3 slices, anchovies and avacado: What does this sign mean?

24 August 2009

Glenn Beck screams Obama's a racist! Advertisers flee from Beck's Fox show as if Beck had leprosy

Click image, maybe this sucker grows.

The Associated Press (USA newswire)
Monday 24 August 2009

Glenn Beck's advertisers
flee in terror from his
Race-Hatred Fox Cable Fiesta

by David Bauder, Associated Press

NEW YORK —- Glenn Beck returns to Fox News Channel on Monday after a vacation with fewer companies willing to advertise on his show than when he left, part of the fallout from calling President Barack Obama a racist.

A total of 33 Fox advertisers, including Wal-Mart Stores Inc., CVS Caremark, Clorox and Sprint, directed that their commercials not air on Beck's show, according to the companies and ColorofChange.org, a group that promotes political action among blacks and launched a campaign to get advertisers to abandon him. That's more than a dozen more than were identified a week ago.

While it's unclear what effect, if any, this will ultimately have on Fox and Beck, it is already making advertisers skittish about hawking their wares within the most opinionated cable TV shows.

The Clorox Co., a former Beck advertiser, now says that

"we do not want to be associated
with inflammatory speech used by
either liberal or conservative
talk show hosts."

The maker of bleach and household cleaners said in a statement that it has decided not to advertise on political talk shows.


The shows present a dilemma for advertisers, who usually like a "safe" environment for their messages. The Olbermanns, Hannitys, O'Reillys, Maddows and Becks of the TV world are more likely to say something that will anger a viewer, who might take it out on sponsors.

They also host the most-watched programs on their networks.

"This is a good illustration of that conundrum," said Rich Hallabran, spokesman for UPS Stores, which he said has temporarily halted buying ads on Fox News Channel as a whole.

Beck can bring the eyeballs. With the health care debate raising political temperatures, his show had its biggest week ever right before his vacation, averaging 2,400,000 viewers each day, according to Nielsen Media Research.

He was actually on another Fox show July 28 when he referred to Obama as a racist with "a deep-seated hatred for white people." The network immediately distanced itself from Beck's statement, but Beck didn't. He used his radio show the next day to explain why he believed that. He would not comment for this article, spokesman Matthew Hiltzik said.

ColorofChange.org quickly targeted companies whose ads had appeared during Beck's show, telling them what he had said and seeking a commitment to drop him. The goal is to make Beck a liability, said James Rucker, the organization's executive director.

"They have a toxic asset," Rucker said. "They can either clean it up or get rid of it."

It's not immediately clear how many of the companies actually knew they were advertising on Beck's show. Sometimes commercial time is chosen for a specific show, but often it is bought on a rotation basis, meaning the network sprinkles the ads throughout the day on its own schedule. Sometimes ads appear by mistake; Best Buy said it bought commercial time for earlier in the day, and one of its ads unexpectedly appeared in Beck's show.

One company, CVS Caremark, said it advertises on Fox but hadn't said anything about Beck. Now it has told its advertising agency to inform Fox that it wanted no commercials on Beck.

"We support vigorous debate, especially around policy issues that affect millions of Americans, but we expect it to be informed, inclusive and respectful," said spokeswoman Carolyn Castel.

Besides the unpredictability of the opinionated cable hosts, the rapid pace of today's wired world complicates decisions on where to place ads, said Kathleen Dunleavy, a spokeswoman for Sprint [US telephone company]. She said she was surprised at how fast the Beck issue spread across social media outlets and how quickly advertiser names were attached to it.

UPS' Hallabran said the decision to pull commercials "should not be interpreted as we are permanently withdrawing our advertising from Fox." He said the company wants to reach viewers with a wide spectrum of opinions.

Except for UPS Stores, there's no evidence that any advertisers who say they don't want to be on Beck's show are leaving Fox. Network spokeswoman Irena Briganti said the companies have simply requested the ads be moved elsewhere and that Fox hasn't lost any revenue.

She wouldn't say whether Fox was benefiting from any anti-anti-Beck backlash, with companies looking to support him. Some Beck supporters have urged fans to express their displeasure at companies for abandoning their man.

Beck supporters have suggested that retaliation might have something to do with ColorofChange.org's campaign. One of the group's founders, Van Jones, now works in the Obama administration and has been criticized by Beck. But Rucker said Jones has nothing to do with ColorofChange.org now and didn't even know about the campaign before it started.

Beck's strong ratings —- even at 5 p.m. EDT he often outdraws whatever CNN and MSNBC show in prime-time -— make it unlikely Beck is going anywhere even as the list of advertisers avoiding him approaches 36.

But it could mean advertising time becomes cheaper on his show than such a large audience would normally command. Some of his show's advertisers last week included a male enhancement pill, a law firm looking to sue on behalf of asbestos victims, a company selling medical supplies to diabetics and a water filter company.

Rucker said ColorofChange.org has contacted about 60 companies regarding Beck, and is heartened by the response.

"It's causing a certain conversation around Beck, which I think is important," he said.

On the Net:

* http://www.colorofchange.org
* http://www.foxnews.com

Copyright © 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

- 30 -

================

http://www.colorofchange.org

Stop the Race Baiting

Here's the message we sent to our members, asking them to call on advertisers to drop their support for FOX's Glenn Beck.

After you've read it, please add your voice.

President Obama has "hatred for white people"?

Glenn Beck -- race-baiting and peddling fear

Glenn Beck is using his platform to stoke race-based hate and fear.

Help us fight back, by hitting Beck where it hurts, NOW:

Dear ColorOfChange.org member,

More and more, right-wing talk show hosts are bringing race-based fear mongering into the mainstream, but FOX's Glenn Beck just took it to another level. On Tuesday, Beck said:

This president has exposed himself
as a guy over and over and over again
who has a deep-seated hatred for white people ...
this guy is, I believe, a racist.

[1]


It's part of a larger argument Beck has been making:2 that President Obama is using the White House to serve the needs of Black communities at White people's expense. This kind of talk stirs up fear, hate, and it can lead to violence.3,4

Together we can stop Glenn Beck.5 Starting today we're calling Beck's advertisers, asking them if they want to be associated with this kind of racist hate and fear-mongering. When they see tens of thousands of people signing on behind that question, we believe they'll move their advertising dollars elsewhere, damaging the viability of his show and possibly putting him out of business.

All it requires is you, standing up and being counted. Please take a moment to join the effort, and invite your friends and family to do the same:

http://www.colorofchange.org/beck/

Glenn Beck is appealing to the worst in America. Of course, some people refuse to accept the fact that our president is Black or the idea that he could truly serve all Americans. We know that. The only way these views will fade away is if they're not reinforced by mainstream society. Instead, folks like Glenn Beck, Lou Dobbs,6 and Rush Limbaugh7 are exploiting racism and race-based fear to bump their ratings, stirring up racial discord in the process.

The dangers of these tactics are real. We saw the same dynamic during the presidential race: by the end, the McCain/Palin campaign was unable to control the violent energy whipped up by their race-baiting. The result was an unprecedented number of threats on Obama's life, a rise in the number of hate groups, and an increase in the number of threats and crimes against immigrants and Black people.8,9,10

FOX has had a long history of race-baiting and racism on its shows, and we've run campaigns calling them out.11,12 But Glenn Beck appears to be taking the network to an even lower standard. He's trying to divide and distract America when we should be coming together and talking about issues that really matter--like health care and the economy.

The good news is that we have the power to stop this. All major media is funded by advertising. And advertisers, more than anything, care what consumers think. If we want to change what's happening and put an end to folks like Glenn Beck having a platform, we can do it.

It's up to us, and it can start now. Please join us:

http://www.colorofchange.org/beck/

Thanks and Peace,

-- James, Gabriel, William, Dani
and the rest of the ColorOfChange.org team


July 30th, 2009


Help support our work. ColorOfChange.org is powered by YOU -- your energy and dollars. We take no money from lobbyists or large corporations that don't share our values, and our tiny staff ensures your contributions go a long way. You can contribute here:

https://secure.colorofchange.org/contribute/

References

1. "Beck: Obama has 'exposed himself as a guy' with 'a deep seated hatred for white people'" Media Matters, 7-28-09
http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/200907280008

2. "Glenn Beck: Obama agenda driven by 'reparations' and desire to 'settle old racial scores'," Media Matters, 7-23-09
http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/200907230040

3. "Palin linked to death threats against Obama," Economic Times, 11-9-2008
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/3691429.cms

4. "Obama win prompts wave of hate crimes," Times Online, 11-17-2008
http://tinyurl.com/5rhf29

5. "MSNBC's Deutsch encourages viewers to demand advertisers on Beck's show spend money elsewhere," Media Matters, 7-29-09
http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/200907290037

6. "On Television and Radio, Talk of Obama's Citizenship," The New York Times, 7-24-09
http://tinyurl.com/mb467j

7. "Rush and reparations," The Nation, 5-12-2009
http://www.thenation.com/blogs/notion/435392/rush_and_reparations

8. See reference 2.

9. See reference 3.

10. "Homeland Security report warns of rising right-wing extremism, Huffington Post, 4-14-2009
http://tinyurl.com/cpgx6q

11. ColorOfChange.org email on Fox's attacks on the Obamas
http://www.colorofchange.org/foxobama/message.html

12. "An overview: Fox News and its problem with African-Americans," ColorOfChange.org

http://colorofchange.org/fox/summary.html

23 August 2009

nasty termite fight

The Arshakyan sisters represented Armenia in the Eurovision song contest with their song "Jan Jan."

The Telegraph (national daily newspaper UK)
Tuesday 18 Aug 2009


Azerbaijanis questioned
over Eurovision votes


Azerbaijanis who voted for neighbouring Armenia's Eurovision Song Contest entry this year have been questioned by police.

by our foreign staff

More than 40 people who texted their support for the song Jan Jan are thought to have been accused of unpatriotic behaviour and being a "potential security threat."

There have long been tensions between the two countries and they fought over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region in the 1990s.

The authorities have denied being heavy-handed claiming people were simply invited to explain their vote.

Just 43 Azerbaijanis are thought to have voted for Armenia in the competition and it is not clear why the authorities decided to begin questioning people three months after this year's competition.

Civil rights campaigners say freedom of expression is increasingly suppressed in Azerbaijan under the presidency of Ilham Aliyev.

- 30 -

Plan B: Greet 1,800,000,000 neighbors


Answer to the PizzaQ ...

Although lots of Ramadan artists put one or more stars inside the crescent moon, this is forbidden -- not by Islam, but by Astronomy. A crescent moon is just a moon -- a very solid and opaque object -- but with a zone darkened by the Earth's shadow. So you can't see through it, you can't see any stars behind it.


~ ~ ~

Post to the Artistamp Yahoo List (AML)

========

Hi Hi Thanks Thanks Jenny!

I will accept your praise for the SENTIMENT behind the stamp, but not for the stamp itself -- let's face it, I'm a crappy draftsman/draughtsman and a pathetic artist.

I can't even make a decent crescent moon. SO ... check out the files, I have switched to a New, Improved V.2 Ramadan Kareem stamp.

You would think that with an estimated 1,800,000,000 Muslims on this-here planet, I would know more than two of them. (I'm not counting my 8,771 Muslim pals on Internet Relay Chat.)

One pal suggested it's common to skew the crescent moon toward the North-Northeast, so I did. But a Google Image search of professional Ramadan cards doesn't always follow this convention.

These are my neighbors, and this is their most sacred holy month -- and most years I am lucky if I even know Ramadan is here. Last year I was zipping around Quebec and the Maritimes -- not a lot of big Ramadan billboards -- and was 10 days late in wishing my neighbors Ramadan Kareem.

I am dismayed at how rare it is for non-Muslims to wave this greeting to their Muslim neighbors. You probably wouldn't be at all surprised if a Muslim down the street wished you Merry Christmas.

Once I said Ramadan Kareem to the supermarket checkout guy (his ID badge said Mahmoud, I took a wild guess), and the guy almost had a stroke. 800 customers a day, and 1 Ramadan greeting. After we got him some smelling salts, he was Very Happy.

But I think this is the free, simple glue the world quite desperately needs to hold itself together and to keep from flying further apart.

We've tried running this planet as hostile, fearful, suspicious strangers. How's that plan working out?

Kareem means Generous -- built into Ramadan is the obligation to be generous to the needy. The other common greeting is Ramadan Mubarak -- a Blessed Ramadan.

BBC News has a pretty funny "Idiot's Guide to Ramadan" site, very informative for the clueless.

Most years on my blog I just shoplift somebody else's Ramadan Kareem image. This was my first original image. Please feel free to filch it and pass it around generously.

Bob / jameskpolka / Elmer Elevator

22 August 2009

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Ramadan has arrived, the Ramadan Kareem stamp gets a prettier crescent Moon / What's the origin of the crescent moon motif?

Click image for larger.

On the advice of somebody who actually knows metric tons of stuff about Ramadan, I have skewed the crescent moon (and made the cheesy little craters vanish). But in my annual Google image shoplifting search of authentic Ramadan Kareem greeting cards, about half of them skew the moon, and half draw a straight up-down right-left moon.

This is also the season when Sky & Telescope magazine runs its annual article trying to discover the historical origin of the ubiquitous crescent moon and single star Islamic motif. It should be a phenomenon that was visible in a great historical battle or great historic event -- but apparently neither historians nor astronomers can unambiguously identify the event. Anyone who believes he or she knows the origin of this Islamic motif, do please leave a comment.

The single slice of PizzaQ is still unanswered. There's still a non-theological mistake in V.2 of this stamp. And Vleeptron isn't the only artist who makes the same mistake -- it appears in lots of the more professional Ramadan Kareem images. (But it doesn't appear in the flag of Turkey.)

And now, region by region, all over the world, the holy month of Ramadan has begun. Vleeptron wishes everyone Ramadan Kareem -- a month of spiritual renewal, a month of generosity.


21 August 2009

1st Day Issue / Postalo Vleeptron / Ramadan Kareem 1430 / 2009

Click image for larger.

My first non-filched Ramadan greeting -- and just in time.

I was riding trains through Quebec and the Maritimes last year -- not a lot of reminders out the windows or on the streets. I think I was more than a week late to give a shout-out to my Muslim neighbors -- estimates range from 1,300,000,000 to 1,800,000,000 of them. The community of all the world's Muslims are called the Ummah

أمة‎

In recent years I've just done a Google image search and filched an attractive-looking Ramadan Kareem greeting card -- the Internet equivalent of shoplifting a Hallmark card.

This is my first original Ramadan Kareem image. I sincerely hope that those more familiar with the art and imagery of Ramadan, traditional and modern, than I am -- and that's just about everybody -- will be kind and generous in their critiques of this first try.

Ramadan Kareem means Ramadan is Generous. Giving to the needy is central to the month-long observance.

And that's all I'll say right now. In the imagery and this brief greeting and description, I've probably already made nine mistakes. Please be kind in correcting them in your Comments.

There's a Non-Theological mistake, in other words, an error that has nothing to do with Ramadan or Islam -- and in fact the same error can often be seen in Islamic imagery. 1 slice of pizza after the fast is broken after sundown.

19 August 2009

[REDACTED] *y v*y / more about D*m*n* / don't ask don't tell / that's Israel's story and it's stickin' to it

Click image -- You betcha! :=)

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Wednesday, August 19, 2009 12:48 PM
Subject: Re: oy vey

India and Pakistan were similarly low-key until they decided to go public, surprising many in the West who didn't suspect the strategic purpose of their nuclear power programs.

However, in my opinion, it's just a bad idea to spread secret military installation location information with the general public.

-B** C******

----- Original Message -----
From: Robert Merkin
Sent: Wednesday, August 19, 2009 11:14 AM
Subject: oy vey

Israel's facility is in

*Redacted*


====================

Hiya B** C****** et omnes --

Many issues in your comment -- and thanks.

You may recall I'm a former journalist. "Redacted" just gives us newsies (in Open Societies) the hives. We're not irresponsible. A half-century of dealing with "redacted" has convinced us that it's almost always worse for everyone than "dacted."

The fundamental question -- which will be heatedly debated until the end of time -- is:

Does secrecy about nuclear programs benefit or harm people of good will all over the world?

(People of good will as distinguished from terrorists and psycho rogue states.)

I could argue in this specific story that Israel's supersecrecy surrounding Dimona's activities directly led over the years to a low, shoddy, irresponsible level of concern for the health of Dimona employees.

Where a nation -- Canada, for example -- is a signator and willing participant to international treaties about nuclear activities, the pressure is huge for each signator nation to conform to accepted international norms.

At the other end of the spectrum, I wonder how concerned a nation like North Korea is about the workers in its nuclear facilities. Because where health and human safety aren't high on the agenda, the nation gets its desired program results much faster and much more cheaply.

If, specifically, you're concered about letting Bad People know precisely where nuclear weapons facilities are, the cat named Dimona was out of the bag after former Dimona worker Mordechai Vanunu spilled the beans in 1986 (and spent 18 years in Israeli prison for blabbing). Even earlier, during the 1967 Middle East War, Soviet (-made) MiG fighter jets overflew Dimona, and probably didn't think it was a dairy farm.

All such facilities everywhere in the world are Big and Noisy.

And that's a lucky and a good thing. The more people of good will know about the what and where of these facilities, the more pressure is brought to bear on dragging them into the norms of the world community.

Are we giving too much info to Bad People? Another debatable question -- but Bad People are gonna do what Bad People are gonna do, and sanitizing the Internet and the public library isn't going to impede their schemes much.

We could have protected the World Trade Towers by hiding their location from the public, but ...

Bob

P.S. Wikipedia -- a source I certainly don't consider Gospel -- says Israel's arsenal goes far beyond fission weapons:

Although no official statistics exist, it has been estimated that Israel possesses between 60 to 400 thermonuclear weapons, believed to be of Teller-Ulam design, with each one in the megaton-range.[3][4][5] The Israeli government maintains a policy of deliberate ambiguity on whether it has nuclear weapons, saying only that it would not be the first to "introduce nuclear weapons in the Middle East".[6] The International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Mohamed ElBaradei regards Israel as a state possessing nuclear weapons.[7]

oy vey / personal opinion: drinking Uranium is Bad / Dimona

Click image, and if USA law permits,
it might get bigger. All violations
will be reported to Homelamp Security.

Israel's Dimona facility is in the Negev desert at

31.067N 35.033E

and it's really cool to look down from satellites and see high-detail images of one of the world's most secret sites. Compared to the secrecy shrouding Dimona, Area 51 is a public picnic park.

I hope this post doesn't run afoul of GCE's policy about the health/medical aspects of ionizing radiation, because the medical issues aren't at all the reason I found these interesting and wanted to bring them to GCE's attention.

(I will go out on a limb, however, and say: Drinking uranium is bad. Dissenting opinions always welcome.)

The following article and editorial belong to a larger context: Israel's estimated 200+ fission weapons and Israel's refusal to acknowledge their existence, or sign any international non-proliferation treaties.

Israel's non-existent fission weapons will or won't be delivered by western Asia's and Africa's most effective air force, and Israel's recently acquired missile-capable German-built submarines.

We may indeed have good reason to freak out about Iran's, Syria's, Pakistan's, India's, North Korea's and Sadaam-regime Iraq's nuclear ambitions, but these states get all the finger-wagging noise and rogue-state accusations, while Israel's fission weapons are some sort of naughty world secret that evades nearly all international scrutiny and criticism.

FWIW, a disclaimer: I'm an American Jew with fond feelings toward Israel, exactly like an Irish-American with fond feelings toward Éire, or a Polish-American's feelings about Poland.

But when an Israeli administration acts whack and foot-shooting, I ain't drinkin' that kosher Kool-Aid.

Bob

Northampton, Massachusetts USA

=================
Haaretz ("The Land")
Israeli national daily newsppaper
1 January 2009

Ex-staffer at Dimona nuclear reactor
says made to drink uranium

by Yossi Melman, Haaretz Correspondent

Workers at the nuclear reactor facility in Dimona were made to volunteer to drink uranium in 1998 as part of an experiment, according to a lawsuit filed four months ago in the Be'er Sheva [Beersheba] Labor Tribunal by a former worker at the facility.

The experiment was allegedly carried out without obtaining written consent from the workers or warning them of risks or side effects, as required by the Declaration of Helsinki on human experimentation.

The Israel Atomic Energy Commission said in a statement that the Dimona facility "has the safety and health of its workers as its highest priority."

The commission statement added that the amount of uranium the Dimona staffers drank in the experiment (100 micrograms) was less than the amount Be'er Sheva residents drink from their taps in one month.

The worker who submitted the lawsuit, Julius Malick, recently retired after he said he was threatened by the former director of the facility, Yitzhak Gurevich, and the director of human resources, Gary Amal, that if he did not retire he would be fired.

Malick is suing the Dimona facility for a total of NIS [New Israeli Shekel] 1,800,000 [today's rate: U$470,942] in compensation. According to the suit, Malick was "asked by his superiors to take part in an experiment on five workers. In the framework of the experiment, Mr. Malick and the other workers drank uranium. The experiment was conducted without medical supervision and no explanation was given as to the health risks to participants. Mr. Malick, out of fear for his livelihood and future in the department, agreed to the demand that he participate."

Malick, who worked at the Dimona reactor for 15 years before retiring in 2008, received his bachelor's and master's degrees in chemistry at Bar-Ilan University. He has another degree, in industrial engineering and management, from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Be'er Sheva.

The lawsuit also notes that, while the workers did not receive the results of the experiment, an article about it appeared in the scientific journal Health Physics. According to the suit, the article, written by a number of researchers - headed by Drs. Zeev Karpas and Avi Lorber, the directors of the Dimona facility's analytical chemistry lab - included the subjects' names without their permission.

The subjects were given grape or grapefruit juice containing uranium to drink and were then asked for a urine sample, which was then analyzed to determine how uranium is excreted from the body through urine.
The researchers said it was not supposed to be dangerous, Malick told his lawyer, Alexander Spinrad. "Lorber and Karpas said that even they took part in the experiment themselves, although to this day it's not clear to me whether they actually did. Afterward co-workers to whom I told this said I was stupid for drinking it and they wouldn't have agreed under any circumstances to do it," Malick also told his lawyer.

Malick, a chemist, also said that a long time after the experiment, Lorber told him it was his and Karpas' private project. "That's ridiculous, of course, because the article listed other partners, whose names appear under their names and listed as workers of the Dimona facility," Malick said.

Malick also said he once complained that no records were being kept and Karpas "joked with me and said I was making a tempest in a teapot." The suit also states that his superiors never recorded his participation in the experiment in his medical records.

The suit describes a work accident in August of 1998, in which Malick sustained a burn on his hand as a result of contact with small amounts of uranium and other materials. Malick said he received poor treatment, and that he discovered by chance that the materials to which he had been exposed in the accident were not identified in the medical report. Malick told his lawyer he believed this type of maltreatment was systematic, and the suit alludes as much.

The lawsuit also states that Malick, in an internal memo to the safety department at the Dimona reactor, warned that workers who had been exposed in an accident to radioactive materials had not received suitable medical treatment. His first position at the Dimona reactor was in the analytical chemistry lab, where his job, among other things, was to evaluate possible damage to workers exposed to hazardous materials.

In the early years, Malick's superiors highly praised his work. However, Malick claims that he was later branded as a troublemaker when he tried to improve the level of safety and medical service at the plant. He was subsequently transferred to other positions where his skills could not be put to good use, the lawsuit states, and finally he resigned under threat of dismissal. After he resigned, Malick says he was forced to sign an agreement that discriminates against him relative to other pensioners of the facility.

Malick declined to be interviewed for this article out of concern over harassment by his former employers through the plant's security officers and the head of the security department in the Defense Ministry, which is responsible for security of information and the reactor. However, he confirmed to Haaretz that he had filed the lawsuit.

- 30 -

==============
Haaretz ("The Land")
Israeli national daily newspaper
Wednesday 19 August 2009

Editorial

A symptom, not a solution

In a human experiment that took place 11 years ago at the nuclear reactor in Dimona [Negev desert, Israel], employees were coerced into drinking a mixture containing a concentration containing at least seven times more uranium than the allowable quantity in drinking water.

The experiment, as Yossi Melman reported in Haaretz, contravened the Declaration of Helsinki, and may have caused real damage to the health of the participants. When the report came out, the [Israeli] Atomic Energy Commission quickly asked the Committee for Nuclear Safety to appoint a special committee to investigate the experiment.

It is hard not to be amazed at the number of committees that are supposed to oversee the safety of operations at nuclear centers in Israel, including secret Knesset [Parliament] sub-committees, the state comptroller and internal auditors working at all those secret centers.

The system-wide failures in oversight and supervision of the experiment in question is therefore astonishing. It may be assumed that if the report had not come out in Haaretz, responsibility for this experiment would not have come under review.

The nature of these human experiments carried out by government entities like the Negev Nuclear Research Center in Dimona, the Israel Institute for Biological Research, or the Israel Defense Forces enjoys secrecy under the pretext of security considerations. The public has learned to acquiesce to these experiments, on the unfounded assumption that they are necessary to strengthen the state's ability to protect its citizens.

The systems of oversight for these experiments were put in place to reassure the public, and especially those who take part in the experiments, that they are protected by watchful, professional authorities that act as a wall against any breach of law or protocol, in order to prevent improper experimentation.

However, it turns out that there are cracks, at the very least, in this protective wall. That is the case with the uranium-drinking experiment, the dives in the Kishon River, the anthrax experiments, the nerve gas at the Institute for Biological Research and apparently other cases that are still waiting to be aired, or those that "for security reasons" will never be publicized.

These cases require the experiments' supervisors to reexamine the efficacy of their implementation, and use their authority to set clearer and more transparent procedures that do not permit looking the other way or circumvention. A special investigative committee is part of the symptom, not the solution.

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from the journal Health Physics
[You have to pay for the entire article.]


Uranium in Urine-Normalization to Creatinine

Karpas, Z.; Lorber, A.; Elish, E.; Marcus, P.; Roiz, Y.; Marko, R.; Kol, R.; Brikner, D.; Halicz, L.

Abstract

"Spot samples" of urine are routinely used to monitor occupational exposure to uranium and other toxic heavy metals, such as mercury, lead, and cadmium. In the present work, it was shown that diurnal variations in the uranium concentration in different urine samples from the same individual could be quite large. However, these variations were in correlation to the Creatinine level of the same samples, with values of R = 0.72-0.99, for the five subjects studied here. Thus, it is proposed here that uranium concentrations in "spot" urine samples be expressed in terms of ng uranium g-1 Creatinine rather than ng uranium L-1. Once the 24-h Creatinine level is estimated for the individual based on weight, height and age, the adjusted values can be used for determination of the internal dose of uranium.

(C)1998 Health Physics Society