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Quake homeless “enjoy a weekend of camping” April 8, 2009

Posted by dorigo in news, politics.
Tags: ,

The quiz of the day: who uttered such a profanity today, during an interview to german television, referring to the victims of the destructive earthquake who destroyed part of central Italy two days ago ?

I will give you a few hints. It is the same person who just a few days ago embarassed Italy at the G20, the same person who a few years ago suggested in a verbal exchange at the european parliament that Schultz, a german socialist, would make a very good nazist kapo’.

Ok, if you haven’t figured it out already, check it out on the times online.

I am ashamed of the person Italians has elected as their representative, and I feel especially bad since now I cannot even tell myself that the US president is even worse anymore.


1. Tony Smith - April 9, 2009

According to an 8 April 2009 wsws.org article by Stefan Steinberg:
“… There is considerable evidence that the damage inflicted by Monday’s quake could have been minimised by the planned evacuation of residents.
At the same time, it is also apparent that the high toll of deaths and casualties is directly attributable to the shoddy construction standards that prevail throughout the entire country. …
A large number of the buildings that have been destroyed in L’Aquila are just 10-15 years old.

Prime Minister Berlusconi, who rushed to assure the media that this latest quake and the damage it caused was an unavoidable act of fate,
made his own fortune in the building industry before shedding large parts of his empire to his brother Paolo.

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi was among the first to dismiss Guiliani’s warning and told a press conference after the quake that there was “no scientific basis” to any suggestion that the earthquake had been predicted.

Giuliani told the Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera:
‘It is utterly false to say that we cannot predict seismic events. We can. …’ …”.

Tony Smith

PS – As to some details about Giuliani’s work, see comments in the thread “3 megatons strike in central Italy” on this blog.

2. Nobody - April 9, 2009

Dear Tommaso,
have you considered creating a new tag “jackal”, to mark your blog’s posts featuring contribution of your “special guest” Tony Smith?
Best regards.

3. Luboš Motl - April 9, 2009

I think that Silvio is pretty funny, and even though this joke about camping could be just a little bit blacker than the expectation value of my optimal blackness of a joke, I still consider it a joke.

People have to use jokes even if they are in a difficult situations. Silvio didn’t cause the earthquake and it would be nice if no one pretended otherwise.

There was no scandal on G-20. He just screamed at Obama a little bit, while the Queen was excessively conservative – and arguably slightly racist, not appreciating the natural temperament of the nation to the South. Well, in order to allow more free manners, we abolished the Czech Kingdom in 1918.

4. dorigo - April 9, 2009

Lubos, you can allow yourself the luxury of thinking he is funny since you do not live in Italy, but I have grown tired of the guy. He should retire.


5. dorigo - April 9, 2009

And let me add that I am not against comedy even in the worst situations, but when it targets people so hard-stricken -fathers and mothers who’ve seen their sons dying under the crash of their hourse, parentless kids, people who have lost everything- I cannot help thinking that the person conceiving it is really incapable of empathy.


6. Fred - April 9, 2009

“The Dawn of the Jackal”

After a long, dreamless night, Nobody crawled out from under a rock but the early morning sun failed to open his now closed eyes covered in crust. Writhing on the still cold barren earth his decaying body reflected the lack of joy draping his unfulfilled mind. He could hear the voices of light and reason dancing about but he was powerless to receive them. For the kind blue fairies had turned all of his predatory thoughts into hyenas, jackels and other wild dogs.
Suddenly, he felt alive but desperate to heave his manic euphoria. With all of his remaining might, Nobody gathered one last breath and lashed out, hoping to bring the gods’ ears closer to his mouth. But the drool which gave him life dampened his solemn words and slowly swept away the last drop.

7. Daniel de França MTd2 - April 9, 2009

Is this from Kafka?

8. Tony Smith - April 9, 2009

The Jackal cares very much about earthquake victims.

According to desitunes4u.com (related to a South Asian quake):
“… ‘8 Ten’ the new 3 track heartbreaking enhanced video single from Nita Jackal Records is dedicated purely to the victims of the South Asian Earthquake. 100% of all the proceeds raised from the sales of the single has been pledged to the ‘The British Red Cross’ in aide of the victims … The finalized track features artists Shy, SIB, Skitz MC and Adil Hashmi on vocals, with Leo and Indy working side by side with The Jackal and the special guest production courtesy of Minesh Parakh (Red Note Remix). The single was released on the 2nd of June 2006. …”.

You can see the video on YouTube ( search for Jackal 8 Ten ).

Tony Smith

9. Kea - April 9, 2009

Being homeless is unpleasant enough even without the stress of a major earthquake. Shame on all people who joke about poverty and/or homelessness without ever having experienced it.

10. island - April 9, 2009

If you ask me, he’s taken a page right out of Obama’s book:

“It’s All In The Tood, Man”

11. Mandeep - April 9, 2009

T- all i can say is i’m much *much* happier these days to be an American. :-> sorry about ole Silvio, but i guess you (and the vast majority of world citizens who pay attention) are happier overall in life as well because “change [that] has come to America”.



ps. don’t take this as a blanket endorsement of all the new Admin has been doing since they have taken office — i am *not* happy about all of that, but that’s a post for another time. and it’s more like fine or hyperfine structure between two atomic levels that differ in their orbital quantum number, or something like this, you know..

12. Fred - April 10, 2009

Sorry, Daniel, it is not from Franz Kafka. lol. But the following excerpt is from Kafka’s “The Trial”

“From under the bed, the painter withdrew a pile of unframed paintings. They were so covered in dust that when the painter tried to blow it off the one on top the dust swirled around in front of K.’s eyes, robbing him of breath for some time. “Moorland landscape,” said the painter passing the picture to K. It showed two sickly trees, well separated from each other in dark grass. In the background there was a multi-coloured sunset. “That’s nice,” said K. “I’ll buy it.”

13. changcho - April 10, 2009

I know – it was Benito Berlusconi.

14. Haelfix - April 10, 2009

I don’t think Berlusconi, to his credit, meant what he said or rather it didn’t come out as intended. Sometimes words can be garbled. God knows in the US we had a president who mangled every other sentence for 8 years and even Obama has made word gaffes in recent months.

People get a little too touchy about things like that in an internet age, we’re all human!

15. dorigo - April 10, 2009

Oh no, Haelfix, sure. Berlusconi did not mean what he said. We all know it – it happens so often we must know by now: his mouth is quicker than his brain. Only, this causes damage.


16. T - April 12, 2009

Yep, last snipe at the US for me. I enjoy learning about physics on this site, but it seems you take any chance you can to slam the US – even in a post meant to criticize the Italian president. Certainly the US is responsible for many problems – though I’d say most europeans are throwing stones from glass houses. Constructive criticism is fine, but when it borders on bigotry that’s when the line should be drawn. I’ve read enough posts to recognize a pattern. Recently, the quote of the week you posted and now this has made it no longer fun to read your blog. A real shame – I’ll definitely miss the physics posts.

17. Hatim - April 12, 2009

Tomasso, such a comment or remark is, from my point of view, unacceptable at all. Nothing can justify making “jokes” or laughter at the tragedies which are lived by the victims of the quake. I could tell the minute I saw him on the mass service for the quake’s victims, few days ago, that he does not care. I could tell that he was there because he had to, not because he cares. But again, since people of Italy elected him, one should respect their choice, at least till we can find a new system that would allow us to choose the best for the job. For myself, and as human being, I am ashamed of this remark of a fellow human being.
My prayers go to those who lost their lives in the quake, knowing that some may have given their lives trying to help others. My prayers, also, go to those who live now in the “camps” mourning the loss of their loved ones.
Berlusconi’s remark should be ignored for now but not to be forgotten at the next elections.

18. Fred - April 12, 2009

Dear comment #16 T,

Where does one begin and how does one parry another’s perceptions? I imagine it’s like engaging liquid jello with a sword. It is your right to consider a person’s intolerances and prejudices but it might also be in your interest to consider the facts, to properly interpret self-evident writings and to reevaluate the attraction to uber nationlism. However, you might be 100% correct in your assessment but you’d have a pile of evidence stacked against your case to the contrary.

Dorigo’s 1st sin which perturbed you so greatly:
“I read in the newspapers they are going to have 30 minutes of intellectual stuff on television every Monday from 7:30 to 8. to educate America. They couldn’t educate America if they started at 6:30.”
(G.Marx) as in “Groucho” Marx. To paraphrase (G.Stein): “A joke is a joke is a joke.”

Dorigo’s 2nd sin:
“… and I feel especially bad since now I cannot even tell myself that the US president is even worse anymore.”
To put it mildly, our last president’s 8 year stint was not one of our country’s finer moments. In conclusion, Dorigo’s statements are consistent with the thoughts of one of our former presidents and would be considered very patriotic if he were an American citizen:

From Teddy Roosevelt, legendary adventurer:
1. “To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.”

1912 platform statement from the same leader and his Progressive “Bull Moose” Party:
2. “To destroy this invisible Government, to dissolve the unholy alliance between corrupt business and corrupt politics is the first task of the statesmanship of the day.”


19. dorigo - April 12, 2009

Hi all,

…and the winner is: Changcho 🙂

Fred, you are 100% right. America is a great country, and I love it although it makes me suffer. That is why I allow myself to criticize it, even bitterly: I want it to be better. And it is getting better these days!

Hatim, yes, a head of state cannot allow himself such slips. The problem with Berlusconi is that he is so full of himself, he thinks he is allowed anything. And since he does have a sense of humour, he uses it in the most inappropriate circumstances. This has led to several embarassing gaffes in the past. This last one is very bad because it is directed at people who has just lost relatives, their homes, everything. Really incredible how he can just disconnect from reality.

Cheers all,

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