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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on March 17, 2011 3:13 PM. The previous post in this blog was Hellzapoppin'. The next post in this blog is He likes 'em good-lookin'. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Thursday, March 17, 2011

A "clarification"

Earlier this week we posted a forwarded e-mail message that we had received from a reader. The e-mail message appeared to be from Gerry Williams, chair of the Oregon Seismic Safety Policy Advisory Commission. It outlined quite directly the utter vulnerability of Oregon to earthquake damage and resulting harm to humans. Toward the end of the message, its author was vocally critical of the twisted priorities of the state government, which ignores those risks while building a college basketball arena.

We agreed with those sentiments, and were happy to publish them. But now the back-pedaling has begun. The reader who sent the message to us -- who is identifying himself as Joe Schafbuch -- now informs us that maybe Williams didn't actually say what the e-mail said he said. Schafbuch now writes:

Let me correct the item I forwarded as it doesn't reflect the total overview of the issues but just highlights key elements from the commission's report. The remarks about public funding of arenas, school children and Phil Knight are not part of the Advisory committee's report and were added to the thread as it was forwarded from recipient to recipient.
When we asked Schafbuch who did write what the e-mail attributed to Williams, Schafbuch replied:
The email highlighting the issues facing Portland was orginated by Mr. Williams (from the report below) and forwarded to me with additional comments by other receipients of the original email. ( I did clean up the email prior to forwarding to you because of the randomness of statements and the NSFW statements that had been attached). The last couple of paragraphs represents my position in response to the issues presented from the report. I'm sorry for any confusion.
The whole thing seems curious. In his original e-mail message to us on Monday, Schafbuch had written:
I really enjoy your blog and look forward to your entries throughout the day. In regards to the disaster in Japan, my good friend, Dr. Gerry Williams sent me this email (below) that I thought I would share with you and possibly your readers. It’s quite a report if something similar hit here locally.
The forwarded message (which we reprinted) then appeared, all in a blue font, with Williams's name signed, also in blue, at the bottom -- immediately after the comments about the spending priorities:

Whatever happened, Schafbuch is now apparently telling us that Williams didn't write at least the last part of the e-mail message we published. For what it's worth, we relay that point here.

Comments (13)

Probably what happened is the writer said a little too much and included some personal opinions that attracted heat from that big ugly monster here in Portland.

It never ceases to amaze me how some of your responders always take cheap shots at Mr. Knight. He's a local guy, who with his partner took a waffle iron and built a multi billion $ Company. Who donates millions to local charities and institutions. Then look at what he and his Company and it's employee's pay in taxes and the amount of time and money they donate. Add to that the multiplier effect and your talking big bucks. Now it his money so he can do anything he wants with it. Just because he doesn't support your progam or cause is no reason to villify him. I'd find somebody of less stature to pick on.

Sorry for the spelling but you don't have spell check

I am reminded of the children's book, "You think just because you're big, you're right" , by Albert Cullum.
This also reminds me of the game where a message is whispered from person to person and then repeated when the last person has heard the message.
The internet is a great place in many ways but one should think and write carefully before sending messages out into the great cyber void.

Mr. Knight is wealthy beyond criticism.

I'm with Larry.

Phil Knight's fortune was earned by Phil Knight. He can do what he wants with his money.

If you wanna quibble with Nike's labor practices, how their shoes oughta be made right here in the USA, etc. etc., you have every right to. I'm sure there are issues of concern on all fronts.

But the cleverly phrased cheap shots and ad hominem attacks are the refuge of people without substantial arguments. There is no need to take them seriously.

Those of you who defend the absolute right of the wealthy to use their wealth as they see fit: I guess you have no problem with a political system that responds to wealth and not to voters, and especially no problem with plutocrats like Phil Knight or Merritt Paulson who use the power of their wealth to extract public funds and appropriate the to their own advantage. I respectfully dissent.

Allan L your wrong my guess is when you total it"all" up he pays more in the he extracts. I have never heard of him abusing the system, uses it some times but he pays in "a lot".

Allan L your wrong

Could be. I thought I knew the difference between 100 and 200, but when you add six zeroes to each maybe it's not the same . . . .

In the original post, I was able to decipher opinion versus content quite easily, and I couldn’t agree more that our government’s priorities are twisted.

Would you guys please leave this stuff in the more than capable hands of Sarah Palin? She knows earthquakes in the many different realms they occur. She observed the tsunami two weeks ago from the front porch of her family's Alaskan homestead.

Phil Knight is responsible for earthquakes?

Phil Knight is responsible for earthquakes?

Well, whenever he says "Jump!", our State Legislature says "How high?" Perhaps that's taken a toll over the years.

Phil Knight's done a lot of great things with his wealth, such as the cancer center up at OHSU. But he's also used that wealth on a lot of wasteful vanity productions at the University of Oregon, which at this point has 22,000 football uniforms and a brand-new basketball arena with no midcourt line -- but not enough dorm space to house all the freshmen. Like anyone else, he's got good ideas; he's got bad ideas.

Oh you mean spending money on totally unneeded stuff like EPA LT2 compliance to the tune of like $500 million?

Now that Senator Merkley has gotten the EPA to allow the state of Oregon to determine if this is needed, our knuckleheads in city hall still can't find the balls to do the right thing.


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