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Campaign to Stop Killer Coke Update March 1, 2011

Table of Contents

  1. 'The Coca-Cola Case' Documentary Film Wins Major Awards
  2. School & Public Libraries Offering 'The Coca-Cola Case'
  3. 'The Coke Machine', by Michael Blanding, Gets Rave Reviews
  4. Coke's Crimes by Country Highlighted on KillerCoke.org Website
  5. Campus Activism: Active Campaign Schools in Question
  6. Coke's Cathleen Black Striking Out as NYC Schools Chancellor
  7. Was Coke Auditor, Ernst & Young, Engaged in 'Massive Accounting Fraud' by Misleading Investors?
  8. Zocalo article: 'Logra Rogers expulsar a Coca Cola de escuelas en EU' with English translation
  9. Stroke, Heart Attack, Cancer, Birth Defects & Coke
  10. April 27 Annual Shareholders Meeting of The Coca-Cola Co.
  11. Join SOA Watch Days of Action to Close SOA & End U.S. Militarization in the Americas
  12. Order Stop Killer Coke Campaign Buttons/Pins/Badges

The Campaign to Stop Killer Coke is in need of funding to expand its outreach. The Campaign has been primarily financed by Corporate Campaign, Inc., which has also contributed thousands of professional staff hours to develop every aspect of the Campaign. If you are opposed to the ideological right-wing attacks on workers and unions and the brutal labor, human rights and environmental abuses of The Coca-Cola Co. throughout the world, consider making a donation to this important battle.

If you are able to donate any amount, please go to http://www.killercoke.org/contribute.php and contribute via PayPal or write a check payable to Campaign to Stop Killer Coke and mail to: Campaign to Stop Killer Coke, Cooper Station, PO Box 1002, New York, NY 10276-1002.

1. 'The Coca-Cola Case' Documentary Film Wins Major Awards

The Coca-Cola Case wins the 2010 CLiFF Best in Festival award!
Read Article

"The 2010 Canadian Labour International Film Festival has tallied the votes from locations across the country and is pleased to announce that this year's Best in Festival Award goes to The Coca-Cola Case by German Gutierrez and Carmen Garcia. The $2,500 award is given out to the film that captures the highest rating from festival audiences across Canada..."

This is the film that Coca-Cola doesn't want anyone to see and tried unsuccessfully to censor by threatening legal action against the National Film Board of Canada, grassroots film collective Cinema Politica and the International Human Rights Film Festival in Paris, France, if it were shown.

At the Festival Internacional de cine documental de Uruguay, "The Coca-Cola Case" won two awards, one for best production and other for best photography.

The film received the TV3 International 2010 Award from The Catalan Corporation of Audiovisual Media. The TV3 International Award is given to films that raise a voice against the violation of human rights. The film was shown at the Docs Barcelona film festival.

To see the film's trailer, a synopsis and to order the film, go to http://thecoca-colacase.org. To learn more about Coca-Cola's human rights and environmental abuses and the movement to hold Coca-Cola accountable, go to http://www.KillerCoke.org.

Those friendly to Coca-Cola who claim to be ethical, should ask themselves: Why isn't Coca-Cola suing the authors, book publishers, documentary filmmakers and others exposing the Company's anti-social and criminal behavior? The answer is: Truth is a strong defense!

2. School & Public Libraries Offering 'The Coca-Cola Case'

The following libraries have obtained copies of "The Coca-Cola Case," which are available for borrowing:

  • Appalachian State University, Belk Library
  • Arizona State University
  • Bates College, Ladd Library
  • The Book House Inc.
  • Connecticut College
  • DePauw University
  • Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne
  • Jacob Edwards Library, Southbridge, MA
  • Northern Arizona University Cline Library
  • Notre Dame Law Library
  • Princeton University
  • St. John Fisher College
  • Stetson University Law Library
  • Stonehill College
  • University of California, Santa Barbara
  • University of Kentucky
  • University Texas at Dallas, McDermott Library
  • University of Vermont, Bailey/Howe Library
  • Warner University
  • Warren Wilson College

U.S. libraries can obtain copies of the film at http://thecoca-colacase.org. There it can be ordered online through PayPal or by sending a donation by check or money order, made out to Campaign to Stop Killer Coke, Cooper Station, PO Box 1002, New York, NY 10276-1002.

Libraries outside the U.S. can obtain copies of the film through the National Film Board of Canada by contacting Jenny Thibault, c/o National Film Board of Canada, Postal Box 6100, Centre-ville Station, Montreal (Quebec), H3C 3H5, Canada; Telephone: 514-283-9189; Email: j.thibault@onf.ca

3. 'The Coke Machine', by Michael Blanding, Released to Rave Reviews

In September 2010, "The Coke Machine: The Dirty Truth Behind the World's Favorite Soft Drink" was released to excellent reviews.

The Book Coke Fears, Audible.com

"THE COKE MACHINE by Michael Blanding is an eye opening expose which blows the plastic lids off a company known to associate itself with love and happiness through its billion dollar advertising campaigns. Yet the colors of Coke, red and white, are appropriate, because while they whitewash the truth, there is blood on their hands..."

"New Book Exposes the Dirty Truth Behind Coca-Cola: Accusations of Murder and Environmental Destruction," By Tara Lohan, AlterNet
http://www.alternet.org/module/printversion/148436

Recently, it was announced that the Russian and Bulgarian rights to the book were sold.

Those friendly to Coca-Cola who claim to be ethical, should ask themselves: Why isn't Coca-Cola suing the authors, book publishers, documentary filmmakers and others exposing the Company's anti-social and criminal behavior? The answer is: Truth is a strong defense!

4. Coke's Crimes by Country Highlighted on KillerCoke.org Website

We have now broken down "Coke's Crimes" by country -- the third option on the left. These countries in which deplorable human rights and environmental abuses proliferate include China, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, India, Mexico, Pakistan and Turkey. We have now added The Philippines. We plan to add additional countries.

Coke's Crimes in The Philippines:

The Campaign to Stop Killer Coke has recently been contacted by Coke workers in The Philippines who have documented Coke's labor abuses and corruption. Others in The Philippines who know of, or who are victims of, labor, human rights, environmental or other abuses perpetrated by Coca-Cola, should send us their information at info@KillerCoke.org. The following is a synopsis of their new website http://www.wix.com/albukarki/cocacolainthephilippines.

"This site is dedicated to the loyal and trustworthy employees of Coca-Cola Bottlers Philippines Inc., active or inactive...Many people are not aware that Coca-Cola is a company that loves to abuse their employees' rights, and tolerates corruption just to achieve their goals...

"All things about the Company will be discussed, things that are related to labor in particular, the companies' vision and its violations of labor laws, and how to deal with it. This site is not a hate campaign against Coke, because the people who are behind in the development of this site are workers in the Company.

"...This site will share the story here in the Philippines, because over the recent years Philippine media was silent about the global labor abuses of Coke...

"This site would like to achieve balanced awareness among people; and is also geared towards expressing the views of the rank and file who currently works for Coke; employees who want to air their views and criticism towards the company, employees who have no one to share with, because they fear losing their jobs when they blow the whistle.

"This site will also expose corruption within the company and how some managers tolerate them to protect their interest. Things will be detailed so that people will know and understand...

http://www.killercoke.org/crimes_philippines.php

How to Navigate the New www.KillerCoke.org Website

The Campaign to Stop Killer Coke recently put our new www.KillerCoke.org site online. It has been redesigned and will be much easier to navigate to find information that you need. You can still find "Breaking News" either by going to the Main Menu on the left or the top button on the right. We are still perfecting the site adding more information and looking for dead links, but the most important information currently exists on the site. If, at any time, you would like to return to the home page, simply click on the Killer Coke can in the upper left.

Translations

Another option that now exists is a "Translate" button at the bottom of each page. If there is something written in another language, a click of that button will translate the page into one of some 30 languages. This is especially needed for our supporters in non-English speaking countries. We hope that those of you with friends in other countries will inform them of the site and the translation option.

In addition, there is a link to a number of the social networking sites, like Facebook and Twitter, also at the bottom.

Researchers can link to news articles, newsletters, reports, lawsuits, videos, interviews and more on the left hand menu.

For campus activists, you'll find information on the Campaign, including a step-by-step organizing packet to Campaign for a Coca-Cola Free Campus. For labor activists, you'll find sample resolutions to make your labor unions and councils Coca-Cola Free. In addition, there is a link to "Upcoming Events" in the top menu.

If you would like to receive our email newsletter, please go to "Join," fill in your info and you'll receive our periodic newsletters and bulletins. To help expand our campaign, we ask you to urge others to sign-up using our "Join" button.

Donations to the Campaign are always welcome. You can go to "Contributions" on the menu at the top and make a contribution through PayPal.

If you find text too small (or too large), you can change the size of the text by pressing Control and the plus (+) or minus (-) sign if you use a PC or by pressing Command and the plus (+) or minus (-) sign if you use a Mac.

Please email us with new ideas and information. Send us video clips, photos and reports of your group's efforts in support of the Campaign for us to publicize.

There will be more information and improvements to come including high-resolution images that can be downloaded and printed.

If your school, labor union, coop or other organization has an active campaign or wants to initiate one, or has removed or banned Coca-Cola products and your involvement is not described on the website, please contact us.

Hopefully, you'll be checking out and exploring the site... and of course, standing up for labor and human rights and the environment by actively supporting the Campaign.

5. Campus Activism: Active Campaign Schools in Question

There are many colleges, universities and secondary schools that at one time had active campaigns against Coca-Cola. We need to hear from students and faculty whether there are still active campaigns continuing or has Coca-Cola been removed from campus or would a group like to work with us to begin another campaign. We can be contacted at info@KillerCoke.org or 1 (718) 852-2808.

If your campus is NOT on this list or on the Active Campus List and you have completed a successful campaign or you have initiated a campaign, or would like to start a campaign, please contact us.

Check out the list of Campuses in Question: http://www.killercoke.org/activism_campuses_in_question.php

6. Coke's Cathleen Black Striking Out as NYC Schools Chancellor

NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, in one of his worst political decisions, appointed Cathleen Black as Chancellor of New York City's public schools. Black resigned from the board of Coca-Cola in November 2010 in an effort to avoid any perception of a conflict of interest since New York City does business with Coca-Cola through a third party vendor. Black is both unfit and unqualified for this position. She is unqualified because she has NO public school nor educational experience and needed a backdoor political appointment.

But even worse, she is unfit for the position because of the corrupt policies that she supported as a top policymaker of Coke since 1993. Black raked in millions at Coca-Cola and holds millions of dollars of Coca-Cola stock, much of which was made off the backs of children working in sugar cane fields and from the mass-marketing of nutritionally-worthless and damaging products to children that continues throughout the world.

Read Juan Gonzalez's article on Cathleen Black and Coca-Cola in the NY Daily News.

Read New York Times article By Michael Barbaro and Anemona Hartocollis

Cathleen Black has showed a lack of concern dealing with one of the most significant problems in the NYC public schools - the issue of overcrowded classes. On Jan. 13 at a meeting with Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver's School Overcrowding Task Force, during a discussion of class size, one speaker after another described what they see as an urgent need for more school seats in Lower Manhattan and a severe lack of planning by the Department of Education.

Ms. Black, with a lack of respect for those who have been working to improve the school system, quipped: "Could we just have some birth control for a while? It would really help us all out."

"Cathie Black Hears Pleas to Stem Downtown School Crowding" by Carl Glassman, The Tribeca Trib, Jan. 30, 2011
Read Article

7. Was Coke Auditor, Ernst & Young, Engaged in 'Massive Accounting Fraud' by Misleading Investors?

Perhaps the old saying, "Birds of a feather flock together" is appropriate here.

Steve Carr of Atlanta, GA, joined the Campaign to Stop Killer Coke in April 2009 to raise questions on the floor of the annual shareholders meeting. He asked:

"My question is about Ernst & Young's auditing of the board committee on human rights. Will we have an independent committee, independent investigation, independent review and publicity instead of this widespread cover-up. It's just like the foxes guarding the chicken house and I resent that. We need full disclosure. We need open information, an open company..."

The New York Times on December 21, 2010, reported:

"The New York attorney general on Tuesday sued Ernst & Young, accusing the accounting firm of helping Lehman Brothers, its client, "engage in a massive accounting fraud" by misleading investors about the investment bank's financial health...

"Ernst & Young, Lehman's longtime outside auditor, certified the bank's financial statements from 2001 until it filed for bankruptcy in September 2008. The suit focuses on Ernst & Young's approval of a much-criticized accounting maneuver that shifted debt off the books before the close of financial quarters.

"The transactions involved "the surreptitious removal of tens of billions of dollars of securities from Lehman's balance sheet to create a false impression of Lehman's liquidity, thereby defrauding the investing public," the complaint said...

" 'This practice was a house-of-cards business model designed to hide billions in liabilities in the years before Lehman collapsed,' Mr. Cuomo said in a statement. 'Just as troubling, a global accounting firm, tasked with auditing Lehman's financial statements, helped hide this crucial information from the investing public...' "

"Cuomo Sues Ernst & Young Over Lehman" December 21, 2010
http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2010/12/21/cuomo-sues-ernst-young-over-lehman/?ref=business

8. Zocalo Article: Logra Rogers expulsar a Coca Cola de escuelas en EU, Miercoles 29 de Diciembre de 2010, Elena Gonzalez, Zocalo
Leer articulo

English Translation: 'Rogers aims to expel Coca-Cola from schools in the United States'
Translated by Samantha (Sam) Bass, Intern and Student at Oberlin College

Read Translation

For more information about Coca-Cola's Crimes in Mexico, visit: http://killercoke.org/crimes_mexico.php

9. Stroke, Heart Attack, Cancer, Birth Defects & Coke

"Nutrition experts call for health product regulatory overhaul: by Sarah Schmidt, POSTMEDIA NEWS, January 23, 2011
Read Article

"The amount of vitamin A in Coca-Cola's fruit drink is well above Heath Canada's recommended daily intake. In fact, it hits the government's tolerable upper intake level for adults. That maximum daily level was established after evidence showed that consuming more of vitamin A in the retinol form -- the type contained in this drink -- may cause liver abnormalities and, if consumed by pregnant women, birth defects."

"Cancer fear over cola colourings: Call to ban ingredient used in Coke and Pepsi" by SEAN POULTER, Daily Mail, 17th February 2011
Read Article

" 'The caramel colouring used in Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and other foods is contaminated with two cancer-causing chemicals and should be banned,' said the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), a health lobby group based in Washington, DC.

" 'In contrast to the caramel one might make at home by melting sugar in a saucepan, the artificial brown colouring in colas and some other products is made by reacting sugars with ammonia and sulphites under high pressure and temperatures.

" 'Chemical reactions result in the formation of two substances known as 2-MI and 4-MI which in government-conducted studies caused lung, liver, or thyroid cancer or leukaemia in laboratory mice or rats.' "

"Diet soda tied to stroke risk, but reasons unclear" by MARILYNN MARCHIONE, AP Medical Writer, February 9, 2011
Read Article

"It's far from definitive proof, but new research raises concern about diet soda, finding higher risks for stroke and heart attack among people who drink it everyday versus those who drink no soda at all.

"The beverage findings should be "a wakeup call to pay attention to diet sodas," said Dr. Steven Greenberg. He is a Harvard Medical School neurologist and vice chairman of the International Stroke Conference in California, where the research was presented on Wednesday..."

"Daily diet soda drinkers (there were 116 in the study) had a 48 percent higher risk of stroke or heart attack than people who drank no soda of any kind (901 people, or 35 percent of total participants). That's after taking into account rates of smoking, diabetes, waistline size and other differences among the groups."

"Diet Soda Linked To Higher Stroke Risk" by Zoe EB, HealthRelatedInfos.com, February 10, 2011
Read Article

"Studying 2,564 people in New York revealed that people who said they drank diet sodas on a daily basis had a 61 percent higher chance of vascular events as opposed to those who didn't drink the beverages."

"Diet soda may raise odds of vascular events; salt linked to stroke risk," American Stroke Association, February 9, 2011
Read Article

Study Highlights:

  • Drinking diet soda daily is linked to a higher risk of stroke, heart attack and vascular-related deaths.
  • High salt intake may double the risk of ischemic stroke, independent of sodium's role in hypertension.

The Campaign has been reporting on the health problems with many of the ingredients in Coca-Cola and Diet Coke for years. One of those is aspartame, the artificial sweetener in Diet Coke, which has been linked to health issues for years. Go to our Health Issues section for more information on aspartame and other ingredients at http://killercoke.org/health_issues.php

10. Annual Shareholders Meeting of The Coca-Cola Co.

The next Coca-Cola Annual Shareholders meeting will be held on April 27, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia at 1 pm.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011, 1:00 PM, local time
Cobb Galleria Centre
Two Galleria Parkway
Atlanta, Georgia 30339

WE NEED YOUR PROXIES for Coke's Annual Meeting

We need help to have a presence at Coca-Cola's annual shareholders' meeting. The annual meeting is the only place we can challenge Coke's chief policymakers -- the top executives and members of the company's board of directors — face-to-face. By having a visible presence at the meeting, no stockholder, creditor, other potential investors or stock analysts can say they were not forewarned about the increasing risk in investing heavily in Coke since

Coke is facing hundreds of millions of dollars or more in lost sales, fines, settlements and brand name value.

The Campaign to Stop Killer Coke is working with individuals, other organizations and stockholders to hold Coke accountable around serious labor, human rights, health and environmental abuses. If you or your organization would like to participate in activities around the annual meeting, contact us at (718) 852- 2808 or e-mail us at info@killercoke.org.

In early March, stockholders should be receiving their notice of the annual meeting and proxy card from The Coca-Cola Co. If you are not able to attend the annual meeting and would like to help the Campaign, we would like your proxy assigned to us so that others can attend. You can contact us at (718) 852-2808 or info@killercoke.org and we will explain how to transfer your proxy. If proxyholders plan to attend the shareholders' meeting and would like to join us in the activities, please contact us.

Please consider making a donation to the Campaign by check or via PayPal from our website to help pay for the mobile billboards as shown above and to defray the expense of the Campaign's presence at the annual meeting.

11. Join SOA Watch Days of Action to Close SOA & End U.S. Militarization in the Americas

SOA Watch from April 4-11th, will be engaging in direct action, fasting, lobbying Congress, and teaming up with the Latin American Solidarity Coalition's (LASC) 5th Anti-Militarization Conference. Please see a preliminary schedule of events.

Take a stand once again with SOA Watch to fight injustice! Click here to enter your organization's endorsement.

Please check back frequently to the SOA Watch webpage to get updates about direct action planning, artists call-out, conference updates, rideboards, housing options and more! We hope you can help us to make this mobilization put anti-militarism on the national agenda.

Preliminary Event Schedule:

  • April 4-8: Fast Against Militarization. We ask you to join Father Roy in a 5-day fast against the increasing militarization of our hemisphere and our world.
  • April 4-8: Artists envision the struggle. We are connecting with local, regional and national arts collectives to help us visualize the resistance!
  • April 8: March on the Pentagon, in collaboration with the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance.
  • April 9-10: The 5th LASC Anti-Militarization Conference (www.LASolidarity.org). This will be a very dynamic and energizing space to connect with anti-militarization activists from across the hemisphere. The LASC is currently accepting proposals for workshops.
  • April 10: Rally and Direct Action at the White House to pressure Obama to sign the Executive Order to close the SOA. Yes, we can! Si, se puede!
  • April 11-12: Lobbying Congress to shut it down!

What is SOA Watch?

SOA Watch, which is a movement to close the School of the Americas (SOA), was founded by Father Roy Bourgeois, its vocal, dynamic leader.

The SOA, renamed the "Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation," but better known as the School of the Assassins, is a U.S. military training school for Latin American soldiers located in Fort Benning, Georgia. The school is synonymous with torture and military repression around the world. Its graduates have long been associated with military coups, human rights abuses and the suppression of popular movements. Hundreds of thousands, according to SOA Watch, have been tortured, raped, murdered and "disappeared" by those trained at the SOA.

According to a 2001 lawsuit, SINALTRAINAL, et al v. The Coca-Cola Co., et al:

"The U.S. government has trained over 10,000 of Colombia's military troops at the School of the Americas...SOA training manuals, which the Pentagon was forced to turn over in 1996, show that the U.S. encouraged these troops to engage in torture and murder of those who, inter alia, do 'union organizing and recruiting'; pass out 'propaganda in favor of the interests of the workers'; and 'sympathize with demonstrators or strikes.'

"As a consequence of the official vilification of trade unionists by the Colombian and U.S. governments as well as corporations operating in Colombia, Colombia has led the world in the number of murders of trade unionists."

(See The Campaign to Stop Killer Coke Erupts: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jjF8LsvjUcQ)

12. Order Stop Killer Coke Campaign Buttons/Pins/Badges

The Campaign has produced five different buttons/pins/badges with our original graphics. We are asking supporters to contribute according to the following price list. These buttons will make our Campaign visible on campuses, in unions and in the community.

The buttons are all laminated and have pins with clasps. There are five different buttons, which are shown below. Sizes are in the Order Form in our "Campaign Store". Donations for all buttons are $2.50 each plus shipping & handling. These buttons are all union-made. We offer a pack of 10 buttons for $22.00 plus shipping & handling, a pack of 20 buttons for $40.00 plus shipping & handling and a pack of 100 buttons for $150.00 plus shipping & handling. If ordering packs, you can choose buttons you want in the packs. You can pay through PayPal in our "Campaign Store" or by check. For more info on our buttons, go to http://www.killercoke.org/store.php