February 4, 2010

ADM Tries to Take Down Funny Davos Video; Big Business Has No Solutions; Now What?

A legal complaint from agribusiness giant ADM has resulted in the removal from Youtube of a fake video of ADM’s CEO making over-honest pronouncements. (The video is still available here, here, and, for download and reposting, here.)

Last week, the filmmaking team behind The End of Poverty? partnered with the Yes Men to create a parallel, imaginary World Economic Forum in which world leaders came up with real solutions to poverty. The leaders seemed, in a < a href=”“>series of videos, to be supporting a set of initiatives based on 10 Solutions to End Poverty, a petition for which the filmmakers are trying to get ten million signatures by the end of 2010.

Each of those initiatives pages has links to organizations that are fighting hard for change on these issues.

In contrast, the actual World Economic Forum ended Sunday with a profound lack of results, some seemingly satirical but all-too-real headlines (like Goldman Sachs’s Lloyd Blankfein’s rumoured $100 million bonus), and one fruitless complaint to Youtube.

“If we can bail out bankers to the tune of trillions of dollars, surely we can solve poverty, which will just take a few structural changes, plus a whole lot less money,” said Beth Portello, the producer of The End of Poverty?

“All the crises we’re facing are rooted in massive inequality and poverty,” says Philippe Diaz, the film’s director. “If these leaders really wanted to make a difference, they would work towards ending poverty, however uncomfortable that might be for business.”

“It’s easier to remove funny videos from Youtube,” added Portello.


The press release and links to videos can be viewed online at:


DETAILS:  The End of Poverty? is a critically-acclaimed feature length documentary narrated by Martin Sheen and directed by Philippe Diaz which is currently in theatrical release in New York (Cinema Village), Los Angeles (Laemmle Monica 4) and Phoenix (Harkins Valley Art) with more cities to follow.  It is produced and distributed by Cinema Libre Studio (


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  1. The greatest mystery in all of this is not the lack of solutions, but the moral incapacity of those who could make a difference.

    How does an individual with the political and economic power to remedy injustice find it possible to refuse to act on behalf of suffering humanity? Are they incapable of fearing moral consequences? Are they incapable of reading history? Even the Czar of Russia and the king and queen of France lost their lives when their cold heartedness and insensitivity to the most horrible suffering permitted a final accounting.

    How can anyone look into a starving face and, if one has the means to end it, do nothing?

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