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Jeff Bezos blasted for ‘phallic’ rocket flight into space on Blue Origin – Global News



Money can buy you a round trip to the edge of space, but it can’t buy you respect on the internet — or admiration from the customers and low-income workers who made your dream possible.

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos launched himself to the boundary of space aboard Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket on Tuesday, with his brother Mark, space pioneer Wally Funk and Oliver Daemen, a banker’s son, joining him for the ride.

Bezos spent just over 10 minutes in the heavens before coming back down to Earth, where he was already being criticized and mocked on social media for the extravagant display of his personal wealth.

Some people called him a space cowboy. Some people called him the supervillain Lex Luthor. Some people just called him a rich guy who rode a giant metal phallus into space.

Blue Origin’s New Shepard flies into space from the launch pad carrying Jeff Bezos along with his brother Mark Bezos, 18-year-old Oliver Daemen, and 82-year-old Wally Funk on July 20, 2021 in Van Horn, Texas.

Blue Origin/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

“The world’s richest man went on a 10-minute space ride in a penis-shaped rocket,” writer Daniel Kibblesmith tweeted afterward. “We don’t need metaphors anymore.”

More than 185,000 people also signed a petition to bar Bezos from returning to Earth. “Billionaires should not exist … on earth, or in space,” the petition poster wrote. “But should they decide the latter, they should stay there.”

Read more:
Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder, returns to Earth after Blue Origin space flight

Critics also accused Bezos of saying the quiet part out loud at a post-flight news conference, when he credited his customers and employees for making him the richest man in the world — a man capable of buying his own rocket to fly into space.

“I also want to thank every Amazon employee and every Amazon customer because you guys paid for all of this,” Bezos said.

Amazon has enjoyed tremendous growth in recent years, particularly since the beginning of the pandemic. That growth helped Bezos become the wealthiest man in the world, even after losing some of that cash in his divorce with MacKenzie Scott.

Amazon has also been plagued by accusations that it underpays its workers and crushes their attempts to unionize, while also using complex manoeuvres to avoid big tax payments.

“Amazon workers don’t need Bezos to thank them. They need him to stop union busting — and pay them what they deserve,” Robert Reich, the former U.S. secretary of labour under Bill Clinton, tweeted on Tuesday. “Who else thinks Bezos should pay his fair share of taxes before thanking Amazon customers for funding his joy ride to space?”

Other politicians voiced similar opinions.

“Space travel isn’t a tax-free holiday for the wealthy,” Rep. Earl Blumenauer, a Democrat from Oregon, tweeted in response to the stunt. “We pay taxes on plane tickets,” Blumenauer wrote. “Billionaires flying into space — producing no scientific value — should do the same, and then some!”

Rep. Nydia Velazquez, a Democrat from New York, pointed out that the median employee income at Amazon is about $29,000 a year.

“While Jeff Bezos is all over the news for paying to go to space, let’s not forget the reality he has created here on Earth,” she wrote.

Many others piled on to call it a waste of money that could have been spent on fighting climate change or helping the poor, rather than pouring it into a billionaire rocket-measuring contest with Elon Musk (SpaceX) and Richard Branson (Virgin Galactic). Branson went into space a few days before Bezos.

Click to play video: 'Virgin Galactic’s Richard Branson beats out rival billionaire Jeff Bezos, reaches the stars'

Virgin Galactic’s Richard Branson beats out rival billionaire Jeff Bezos, reaches the stars

Virgin Galactic’s Richard Branson beats out rival billionaire Jeff Bezos, reaches the stars – Jul 11, 2021

Colleen Farrell, a doctor and medical ethics expert, framed the launch as a perfect example of the world’s problems.

“If everything that is wrong with the world needed to be summed up in a single metaphor, I think it would be Jeff Bezos spending billions for a 10 minute ride on his phallic rocket while the planet burns and his workers are not given enough money to live or time to use the toilet,” she wrote on Twitter.

“Penis rocket” jokes took off on Twitter, with many comparing Blue Origin’s New Shepard craft to the phallic missile used by Dr. Evil in the film Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me. A scene in the film shows people pointing to the a phallic rocket and using euphemisms for a penis.

“I can’t believe Bezos didn’t launch his penis rocket on Hump Day,” social media personality @JoJofromJerz wrote on Twitter Wednesday.

“Reliable sources tell me that Bezos says this is ‘Just the Tip’ of private space exploration,” Donald Trump Jr. quipped after the flight, in a veiled sexual reference.

All rockets are cylindrically shaped, but Bezos’ New Shepard ignited phallic comparisons with its blunted and slightly bulbous capsule, which sits like a helmet atop the more narrow booster. The booster also has fins that stick out to either side when seen in profile.

The adult site CamSoda capitalized on the rocket design to announce its own line of “billionaire space race”-themed sex toys, featuring objects shaped like the Blue Origin, SpaceX and Virgin Galactic craft.

“Nice,” Musk tweeted in response to the Blue Origin sex toy on Tuesday, after congratulating Bezos on the flight.

Branson also congratulated Bezos without making any “Richard” jokes about the rocket.

With files from The Associated Press

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Your Cover Letter’s Third Paragraph — Getting the Reader to Act



If you don’t ask, you don’t get.


In the 1992 movie Glengarry Glen Ross, Alec Baldwin’s character, Blake, gives a shape-up or ship-out speech to a group of real estate salesmen. He turns over a blackboard on which two sets of letters are written. One set of letters is “ABC.” Blake then shouts, “A-B-C. A, always; B, be; C, closing. Always be closing! Always be closing!”


To shorten your job search, envision you’re looking for your next client. Finding your next client is a sales process; therefore, you need to A-B-C. When you’re in A-B-C mode, you move through an employer’s hiring process much faster than passive job seekers.


A-B-C isn’t only for when you’re at the interview stage, intending to close the deal (obtaining a job offer). To get your network to inform you of job opportunities, get past gatekeepers, and especially to get that covenant interview, you need to A-B-C, which is why your cover letter’s last paragraph needs to be a call to action.


Here are 3 examples:


With my 15+ years of sales management experience, I know I can quickly get up to speed as ACME Inc.’s next Sales Director. I’d welcome the opportunity to speak with you regarding my qualifications. Next Wednesday, I’ll reach out to schedule a call to discuss my thoughts on who to raise ACME Inc.’s ROI by 25% before year-end. I look forward to speaking with you.


I’m inspired by Callister Inc’s success in supporting homegrown businesses. I have several ideas for marketing strategies to increase profitability among your customer base and how I can grow your reach. I look forward to the opportunity to share my thoughts with you.


I’m looking forward to discussing my skills and my 10+ years of international hotel management experience. I’ve several suggestions I’d like to pass by you on how Grand Budapest Hotel can increase its occupancy rate, a challenge all hotels face during the current pandemic. Please contact me at (555) 916-225-5887 or any time. I’ll be in touch next Friday to follow up.


Your closing paragraph needs to:


  • Be decisive. Decisiveness projects confidence, which is not to be confused with arrogance. Confidence is a massive turn-on with employers.Before the hiring manager can feel (hiring comes down to gut feel) you can do the job, they need to feel that you feel you can do the job.
  • Write to what you can do for the employer, not what they can do for you.
  • Offer a teaser. To use another movie analogy, think of Marlon Brando’s words in The Godfather, “I’m gonna make him an offer he can’t refuse.” This sets the foundation for what’ll be discussed and therefore puts you in the driver’s seat.
  • Mention you’ll follow up. (Then DO IT!)


The last point is a job search game-changer. Many career experts claim following up is overly aggressive. The way I see it, not following up makes you passive, which is a form of being lazy. I’m repeating myself; employers don’t hire lazy.


There’s been a few instances where I’ve been overwhelmed with resumes. Those who called me almost always got an interview. I can recall three times where I hired the person based on a “follow-up” phone conversation.


A few weeks back, a Regional Sales Director for a large pharmaceutical company told me when hiring a sales representative, he only grants interviews to those who follow up. This makes sense since sales success requires being comfortable making calls.


Bottom-line: Following up by phone will set you apart from your competition.


Of course, if the job posting says “No phone calls please.”, which is uncommon, you need to respect such instruction.


Regarding signing off, use any of the following:


  • Sincerely
  • Best regards
  • Sincere regards
  • Yours truly
  • Respectfully


As I’ve mentioned in an earlier column, there’s no universal hiring methodology. Don’t stress over small details, such as how to sign off. Throughout your search, focus on communicating how you’re able to bring results (value). Such focus will have you A-B-C.


If you’re wondering what the other set of letters Blake had written on the blackboard, they were AIDA — Attention, Interest, Decision, Action. This is what your cover letter needs to do.




Nick Kossovan, a well-seasoned veteran of the corporate landscape, offers advice on searching for a job. You can send him your questions at



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Israel to offer COVID-19 booster shot to fully vaccinated people 60 and older – The Globe and Mail



Israel’s prime minister on Thursday announced that the country would offer a coronavirus booster to people over 60 who have already been vaccinated.

The announcement by Naftali Bennett makes Israel, which launched one of the world’s most successful vaccination drives earlier this year, the first country to offer a third dose of a Western vaccine to its citizens on a wide scale.

“I’m announcing this evening the beginning of the campaign to receive the booster vaccine, the third vaccine,” Bennett said in a nationally televised address. “Reality proves the vaccines are safe. Reality also proves the vaccines protect against severe morbidity and death. And like the flu vaccine that needs to be renewed from time to time, it is the same in this case.”

The decision comes at a time of rising infections and signs that the vaccine’s efficacy dwindles over time.

Anyone over 60 who was vaccinated more than five months ago will be eligible. Bennett said the country’s new president, Isaac Herzog, would be the first to get the booster on Friday. It will be offered to the general public on Sunday.

Bennett, who is 49, said his first call after the news conference would be to his mother to encourage her to get her booster shot.

Neither the U.S. nor the EU have approved coronavirus booster shots. It’s not yet proven if a third dose helps and, if so, who needs one and when.

But Bennett said that a team of expert advisers had agreed overwhelmingly, by a 56-1 margin, that it made sense to launch the booster campaign. He said the recommendation was made after “considerable research and analysis” and that its information would be shared around the world. Preliminary studies in Israel have indicated the vaccine’s protection against serious illness dropped among those vaccinated in January.

“The findings show that there is a decline in the body’s immunity over time, and the purpose of the booster is to restrengthen it, thus significantly reducing the chances of infection and serious illness,” Bennett said.

Israel has used the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine on its population. Previously, boosters were used in some countries with the Chinese and Russian vaccines.

Early this year, Israel carried out one of the world’s most aggressive and successful vaccination campaigns, reaching a deal with Pfizer to purchase enough vaccines for its population in exchange for sharing its data with the drug maker.

Over 57 per cent of the country’s 9.3 million citizens have received two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, and over 80 per cent of the population over 40 is vaccinated.

The vaccination program allowed Israel to reopen its economy ahead of other countries. But Israel has seen a spike in cases of the new delta variant, even among people who are vaccinated. Bennett urged unvaccinated Israelis, especially younger people who have been hesitant, to get vaccinated immediately.

Earlier this month, Israel started giving individuals with weakened immune systems a third shot to increase their resilience against COVID-19.

Pfizer said Wednesday that the effectiveness of the vaccine drops slightly six months after the second dose. Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech have said they plan to seek authorization for boosters in August.

The World Health Organization said earlier this month that there is not enough evidence to show that a third dose is needed.

The agency’s officials have appealed for wealthier countries to share vaccines with poorer nations that have yet to immunize their people, instead of using them as boosters. Israel itself has come under criticism for not sharing more of its vaccines with the Palestinians.

The Israeli Health Ministry recorded at least 2,165 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, following an accelerating rise in infections over the past month. Serious cases of COVID-19 have grown from 19 a day in mid-June to 159 as the highly infectious delta variant has spread.

Thanks to its successful vaccination campaign, Israel lifted almost all of its coronavirus restrictions this spring. But with new cases back on the rise, the country has tried to halt the spread of the highly infectious delta variant by reimposing limitations on gatherings, restoring a “green pass” system for vaccinated people to enter certain enclosed spaces, and an indoor mask mandate.

Facebook’s new video series, Let Me Explain, discusses various topics related to safety and integrity on its platforms. Supplied by Facebook

Sign up for the Coronavirus Update newsletter to read the day’s essential coronavirus news, features and explainers written by Globe reporters and editors.

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Early Robinhood investor Jason Calacanis on trading app's imminent IPO – CNBC Television



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