Sunday, May 15, 2005
The Yes Men: Gilda, the Golden Skeleton, and the Dow Acceptable Risk Calculator
DOW REJECTS PROPOSAL TO CLEAN BHOPAL USING FIRST-QUARTER PROFITS
The same man who appeared on BBC World TV last December as a Dow representative to announce that Dow would finally clean up Bhopal  showed up today at Dow's Annual General Meeting (AGM) to suggest the same thing to Dow's board of directors and shareholders.
"We made an incredible $1.35 billion this quarter," said "Jude Finisterra," aka Andy Bichlbaum of the Yes Men . "But for most of us, that'll just mean a new set of golf clubs. Let's do something useful instead - like finally cleaning up the Bhopal plant site, or funding the new clinic there ." Dow Chairman Bill Stavropolous responded to "Finisterra's" suggestion with a curt dismissal .
The Yes Men joined other shareholder groups in Midland, including Amnesty International, which condemns Dow's lack of response to the Bhopal crisis as a human rights issue .
BANKERS EMBRACE "GOLDEN SKELETON" MASCOT
Two weeks ago at a London banking conference to which they had accidentally been invited, two "Dow representatives" described a new Dow computer program that puts a precise financial value on human life.
The 70 bankers in attendance enthusiastically applauded the lecture, which described various industrial crimes, including IBM's sale of technology to the Nazis for use in identifying Jews, as "golden skeletons in the closet"--i.e. lucrative and therefore acceptable.
Several of the bankers then posed for photos with "Dow Acceptable Risk" mascot "Gilda, the Golden Skeleton," and signed up for licenses for the "Acceptable Risk Calculator," which helps businesses determine the exact point where human casualties will start to cut into profit, and suggests the best regions on earth to locate ventures with potentially very high death tolls.
See www.theyesmen.org/hijinks/dow/acceptablerisk.shtml for video and photos of the event, and www.dowethics.com/risk/ to try out the "Acceptable Risk Calculator" for yourself.
STATE DEPARTMENT FINDS FAKE DOW WEBSITE USEFUL
Dow may not appreciate the DowEthics.com website--but the US State Department finds it quite useful, and refers requests for information about Bhopal to various of its pages: see www.dowethics.com/statedeptfoi/ for an example.
NOTES TO EDITORS:
 See theyesmen.org/hijinks/dow/bhopal2004.shtml
 Yes Men Andy Bichlbaum and Mike Bonanno had been given one Dow "proxy" each by actual shareholders, giving them the right to attend the annual meeting and address the Dow board.
 Two weeks ago, the Sambhavna Trust Clinic of Bhopal opened a new wing to serve the victims whose numbers continue to grow due to groundwater contamination from the uncleaned plant site. See www.bhopal.org for information on how you can contribute.
 See theyesmen.org/hijinks/dow/2005agm.shtml for complete statements and responses, including Yes Man Mike Bonanno's feverish, red-eared tirade in a neck brace.
 See www.amnestyusa.org/business/dow_letters.html. See also www.proxyinformation.com/dow/summary.htm and www.TRWNews.net