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MediaWATCH: Michael Jackson 'still warm'

MediaWATCH: Michael Jackson 'still warm'

Monday, June 29, 2009
Phuketwan MediaWATCH

A new daily wrap of Thailand news, with a Phuket perspective. Reports from national and international media, with translations into English from Thai.

Associated Press Michael Jackson still had a faint pulse and his body was warm when his doctor found him in bed and not breathing, says a lawyer for the doctor. Lawyer Edward Chernoff also said Dr Conrad Murray never prescribed or gave Jackson the drugs Demerol or OxyContin. He denied reports suggesting Murray gave Jackson drugs that contributed to his death. The doctor immediately began administering CPR, Chernoff said. Chernoff said any drugs the doctor gave Jackson were prescribed in response to a specific complaint from the entertainer. A private pathologist hired by the Jackson family completed a second, private autopsy Saturday, the LA Times reported.

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smh.com.au Peter Conrad writes: In his childhood, as the freakishly talented leader of the Jackson 5, he was often described as a 45-year-old dwarf. At the time of his death from cardiac arrest, aged almost 51, he looked more like a decaying infant, speaking in a prepubescent whisper while concealing the evidence of time's assault behind an assortment of surgical masks, coy Islamic veils and Jackie O-sized dark glasses, with a black umbrella to protect his improbably pallid skin from the sun. Michael Jackson was a biological conundrum. For a while it seemed he might be what Darwinian science called the missing link. He existed halfway between beast and angel, tenuously attaching us to our primitive origins while evolving towards a post-human future.Estranged from his venal, feuding family, in reclusive retreat from his predatory fans, Jackson had lived from an early age with a sense of his own peculiarity.

cnn.com How many people does it take to break the Internet? Just one - if that one is Michael Jackson. The biggest showbiz story of the year saw the troubled star take a good slice of the Internet with him, as the ripples caused by the news of his death swept around the globe. Google News users complained that the service was inaccessible. At its peak, Google Trends rated the Jackson story as ''volcanic.''CNN reported a fivefold rise in traffic and visitors in just over an hour, receiving 20 million page views in the hour the story broke.Twitter crashed. Wikipedia saw close to 500 edits made to Jackson's entry in less than 24 hours.

wsj.com Former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra demonstrated he can still cast a shadow over Thailand after his supporters held a large overnight rally in the Thai capital and appeared to be winning the vote count for a parliamentary seat in a weekend election. The rally was the biggest show of force in favor of Khun Thaksin since the Thai armed forces put down a weekend of antigovernment rioting in April. On Saturday, he told more than 25,000 supporters in Bangkok via a telephone link that he was "really lonely" living overseas, and sang a song about the discomfort of life in Dubai, one of the cities were he has lived on and off since the 2006 coup. Supporters are seeking a million signatures to petition HM The King to clear Khun Thaksin of any allegations of wrongdoing.

Bangkok Post The Puea Thai Party has won the Si Sa Ket by-election in a landslide, its second sweeping by-election victory in two weeks, which shows the staying power of patron Thaksin Shinawatra. The victory, which comes after last week's overwhelming success in the Sakon Nakhon by-election, has boosted confidence among opposition politicians that they will maintain their dominance of northeastern seats at the next general election. Puea Thai claimed victory with a large margin over the government Chart Thai Pattana Party, based on unofficial results.

Bangkok Post Editorial In a little over two weeks, Thailand is to host the 16th annual meeting of the Asean Regional Forum in Phuket. The 27-member ARF includes all countries and groups concerned with this region's military and economic security. That includes, since 2000 when Thailand last hosted the ARF, North Korea. It is the perfect forum for North Korea to explain its recent actions and lay out its future plans. The Phuket meetings, UN forums and other diplomatic channels are the only acceptable methods that North Korea must use to address its problems and negotiate a civilised and non-threatening solution.

Washington Post Former First Lady Laura Bush writes: Rape is routinely used as a ''weapon of war.'' In 2006, I convened a roundtable at the UN to address the situation in Burma and listened as Burmese activist Hseng Noung described the rape victims she had aided. The youngest victim was 8; the oldest was 80. The women of Burma, who are often the regime's chief targets, have responded to this brutality with inspiring courage. More of us in America should make such courage our courage. At this moment, Aung San Suu Kyi, 64 and in fragile health, faces sentencing on trumped-up charges that could force her to endure five more years of brutal captivity. Even Burma's closest allies have called for her to receive proper medical care and have warned that Burma's ''honor and credibility'' are at stake. But the world must do more than express concern.

scmp.com British academic Hazel Smith is one who fears the new US administration of President Barack Obama is pursuing a dangerously ''banal'' approach to its first foreign policy failure. ''There's plenty you can do to North Korean ships in ports under existing procedures and regulations that really make this high-seas stuff look sensational and confrontational. It really does risk an overreaction.'' In a study of North Korean shipping produced earlier this year, Professor Smith found that, while privatisation had forced North Korean crews into smuggling, including narcotics, there was little evidence that the ships had been used in transporting sensitive weapons technology. ''It's like we've been trapped in a warped kind of Groundhog Day when it comes to North Korea,'' said one Obama official.

xinhua Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said on Saturday that his visit to China was a success as the Chinese government agreed to strengthen Sino-Thai trade and investment cooperation, local media reported. Deputy Prime Minister for economics Korbsak Sabhavasu and Trade Representative Kiat Sitthiamorn have been assigned to follow up progress of the agreement on expanding and deepening bilateral ties on trade and investment between the two countries, the website of the Bangkok Post quoted Abhisit, who on Saturday concluded his four-day visit to China, as saying. The agreement was signed by ministers of commerce of Thailand and China in Beijing, where Abhisit and his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiaboa had witnessed. The agreement was signed by ministers of commerce of Thailand and China in Beijing, where Abhisit and his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiaboa had witnessed.

atimes.com Shawn W Crispin writes: Thai Finance Minister Korn Chatikavanij says his 1.5 trillion baht [US $44 billion] program, including 800 billion baht of borrowing outside of the normal budget, is designed to lead the Thai economy over the next three years. His ruling Democrat Party is touting the fiscal program for 6000 different projects as Thai Khem Kaeng, or Thai Strength. Khun Korn says the government and his ministry are willing to risk 'political suicide' to close Thailand's yawning gap between rich and poor. ''I'm not against large companies as long as there is no abuse or monopolistic or oligopolistic power they might have over the market.''

nytimes.com The United States and Russia are locked in a fundamental dispute over how to counter the growing threat of cyberwar attacks that could wreak havoc on computer systems and the Internet. Both agree that cyberspace is an emerging battleground. Russia favors an international treaty along the lines of those negotiated for chemical weapons and has pushed for that approach at a series of meetings this year and in public statements by a high-ranking official. The US argues that a treaty is unnecessary. It instead advocates improved cooperation among international law enforcement groups. If these groups cooperate to make cyberspace more secure against criminal intrusions, their work will also make cyberspace more secure against military campaigns.

scmp.com More than 50,000 people have visited a website that features pictures of Cathay Pacific flight attendants and other frontline staff after they have hung up their uniform for the day. The novel promotion has been a global hit since its launch four weeks ago with two-thirds of hits coming from abroad. Employees, including a flight attendant who was runner-up in a Miss Hong Kong competition, have been whisked off to photo studios for the campaign with no payment other than a set of framed photographs as a reward for taking part. The airline's general manager for marketing James Ginns said: ''We're trying to capture what it is that our employees bring to the job that enables them to get the reaction they get from passengers.''

Phuket Gazette The front page lead article says that lifeguards are now in place on 12 Phuket beaches and 90 lives have been saved. Inside, an Editorial takes a wait-and-see approach, largely blaming the tourists themselves for ignoring advice about water safety and road safety. A First Person article by a risk management expert adds: ''It is often easy to criticise, particularly after things go wrong.'' The arrivals of British and US warships, and a one-armed Japanese sailor, are also reported.

monstersandcritics.com While Chiang Mai used to earn about 40 billion baht (1.16 billion dollars) from tourism five years ago, similar to amount then earned by Phuket and Pattaya beach resorts, last year the city's tourism revenues fell to less than 30 billion, compared with Phuket's 100 billion baht and Pattaya's 70 billion. Hotels are operating at occupancy rates of less than 20 per cent. Chiang Mai's great black-and-white hope now rests with a baby panda. ''This is our marketing tool to bring people back to Chiang Mai,'' one official said. The city is planning 'welcome baby panda' parades on July 4-6, and in mid-August will sponsor a special naming event for the little cub, to be held in Bangkok.

Phuketwan Phuket News

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Phi Phi Riddle: Pursuing the Deaths of Two Tourists

Phuket Joins the US Navy: Take Our Photo Tour
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Update: Evason Staff Told to Leave, Says Union
Updated Report Phuketwan has been told by union sources that the Evason management has handed instant termination notices to a large number of staff at the Rawai resort.
Update: Evason Staff Told to Leave, Says Union

Phuket Brewery Rumor 'All Froth and Bubble'
Latest A former staffer signs an invitation to an event that does not exist: the bizarre case of the mysterious announcement and dinner to mark a Phuket entertainment venue's 'closure.'
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Patong Hill, a Tunnel Too Late for Trucks
Photo Album Another day, another miscalculation as a truck bound for Patong from Phuket City slides back on Patong Hill into the roadside barrier and beyond. The hill wins again.
Patong Hill, a Tunnel Too Late for Trucks

Well-Known Phuket Writer Succumbs to TB
Obituary You only needed to mention her first name on Phuket for people to know who you were talking about. Now Seonai Gordon has died at the age of 47.
Well-Known Phuket Writer Succumbs to TB

Warmongering Precedes Phuket's Next Big Event
Latest Will they or won't they? They world watches as North Korea and the US face off over nuclear weapons, with talks on Phuket next month offering a chance at peaceful dialogue.
Warmongering Precedes Phuket's Next Big Event

Patong Tourist Drowns Despite Swim Warning
Breaking News A tourist on Patong beach drowned on Wednesday evening despite warnings not to go into the water. The man was from Turkey.
Patong Tourist Drowns Despite Swim Warning

Recent Phuketwan MediaWATCH

MediaWATCH: Michael Jackson, Farrah Fawcett Die
News Latest Michael Jackson, the pop superstar, dies suddenly of an apparent heart attack at 50; Charlie's Angel Farrah Fawcett is dead of cancer; New Politics coming.
MediaWATCH: Michael Jackson, Farrah Fawcett Die

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