March 16, 2010

Why did Newsweek put the face of Karl Marx on Michelle Obama's apple?

Look!


Here's a closeup of the apple with some iPhoto'd sharpening (no lines redrawn or retouching, just contrast, sharpening, and increasing the "highlights" and "shadows):


For comparison, here's the standard image of Karl Marx:


Now, the Anchoress — first link, above — has become "convinced that it’s simply a matter of the apples’ shading and the lighting." Absurd! It can't be just the lighting and the pattern of the apple peel. A magazine cover is carefully constructed and attention would have to be paid to any accidental imagery. The apple was chosen to be exactly the intended apple and subject to Photoshop tweaking and strategic placement of the lights to attain just the right level of perception and deniability. A good subliminal image must be seen and not seen. It must slide past the average person's conscious defenses and make anyone who insists it is there seem delusional. The Anchoress has retreated.

And so I say: To Newsweek! A toast!

IN THE COMMENTS: Irene says the image that might or might not be there was intentionally put there as "Tea Party bait":
I hear Chris Matthews now. "Marx? They see Marx? Wow, see how crazy they are?? They see socialists EVERYWHERE."

102 comments:

tim maguire said...

You sure it's not Jesus, appearing spontaneously? Maybe giving his seal of approval to his brother, her husband?

Synova said...

Could it be a reflection of the photographer?

Original Mike said...

Two eyes, mouth, beard.

Yep, that's Karl Marx.

Michael said...

I am going with the prophet Mohammed.

traditionalguy said...

It looks like a fruit from the tree of the knowledge of a smashed economy that must be run by a President for life.

bagoh20 said...

"Could it be a reflection of the photographer?"

If Marx is taking the picture, this is news.

SteveR said...

Seems most likely that this was set up to make the point that people are insane with hatred for Obama, et al, so much so that they see things that aren't there. Because we're all a bunch of loons.

Jeremy said...

Could it be The Queen has jumped the shark?

Duh.

Blue@9 said...

It is rather odd--I find it highly unlikely that the photo editors at Newsweek would have missed that.

kentuckyliz said...

Go ahead, saieth the temptress--take a bite.

Just one little bite.

We shall be like gods.

Gordon Freece said...

It's definitely an old white guy with a beard from the 19th century. I'm not convinced it's necessarily Marx.

But whoever it is: WTF?!

I think they took a few swipes at Michelle with Photoshop too, but there's nothing remarkable about that these days.

MikeDC said...

Looks a like more like John Brown to me.

Or an apple. Come to think of it, it looks a lot like an apple.

Mumpsimus said...

I'm thinking John Brown.

http://www.soul.org/John-Brown.jpg

Christian said...

You haven't got a clue.

It's clearly Frederick Douglass
http://kellylowenstein.files.wordpress.com/2009/08/frederick_douglass.jpg

Either that or Lorenzo Snow
http://www.biocrawler.com/w/images/1/1d/Lorenzo_Snow_photograph_%28BYU%29.jpg

But it could also be Noah
http://z.about.com/d/atheism/1/0/b/e/NoahDoveReturns.jpg

Meade said...

Aren't those horns, coming out of the top of Karl Marx's head?

NewHam said...

"Now, the Anchoress — first link, above — has become "convinced that it’s simply a matter of the apples’ shading and the lighting."

Newsweek would never do this to the Obama's. They'd never suggest to people openly what they're trying to achieve quietly.

It's an accident of the lighting (and if anyone noticed it, they probably thought given their proclivities, that nobody would mind the imagery.)

If it was Bush, and Hitler was staring out of the forbidden fruit, then I'd certainly suspect Newsweek.

But to embarrass Michelle Obama in this way (when she, after all, is only in the White House by accident) ... I just don't see the liberal media doing this.

Don't get me wrong. Michelle Obama is evil in her own special way (after all she introduced "patient dumping into alleys" to her Chicago hospital as a way to control health care costs) but she's not in control of our government.

Her Marxist husband is.

If they're going to brand someone ... they should brand him.

Meade said...

Michelle = Eve?

Karl Marx = Satan?

Apple = Apple?

Chip Ahoy said...

And while there on toast, try "obama toast." Is there ever a genuinely original thought?

But Newsweek, though, such a wonderful bunch of coconuts. They've become much more interesting since I ended my subscription and no longer look to them for anything.

Grady said...

The First Lady and an apple...an interesting reference to Eve?

Eric said...

Or Thoreau.

I agree with Althouse, though. These things don't happen on accident - they would have photoshopped it out if it were unintended.

LarsPorsena said...

It's Rasputin!!!

Chip Ahoy said...

NewHam, that's the thing, though, Eve gives the apple to her husband, so goes the interpretation of the myth.

They're adorable kids just having fun. They're struggling, like so many in that business, generating heat.

Marx on the apple. Hahaha. So much like the Simon Doonan's Mao Christmas tree ornament. Derived!

Irene said...

"It must slide past the average person's conscious defenses and make anyone who insists it is there seem delusional."

Exactly. Tea Party bait.

I hear Chris Matthews now. "Marx? They see Marx? Wow, see how crazy they are?? They see socialists EVERYWHERE."

weyed shut said...

Look into my eyes, and I will mesmerize.

Oh, Larsp beat me to it. Who's bringing down the American czar-in-chief through Michelle?

kent said...

More to the point: what is "Mean Joe" Greene doing on the cover of this week's Newsweek...?

Freeman Hunt said...

Michelle Obama should take the issue of children in slavery around the world. That would matter, and she could actually make a difference.

ricpic said...

Apples only for the children of disadvantaged minorities. That's on page 1137, paragraph 3 (social justice provision), sub-paragraph 3c (compensation for past discrimination) of wookie's hubby's still unwritten health care bill, which is about to be "deemed" into law.

Theo Boehm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Adventurer said...

weyed:

Yes, certain metrognomic appendages can induce trance, particualrly when agitated.

The fresher the better.

Adventurer said...

weyed:

Of course, a company ment by a nice hypnotic voice helps, too. I mean, do you want some company?

garage mahal said...

Billy Gibbons.

Pogo said...

Strange and stupid of Newsweek.
Not a mistake, but also unclear.

It takes the focus off the First lady and her effort, and changes the conversation entirely.

If it were a magazine that actually had a significant circulation, there might be some reasonable concern here.

As it stands, Newsweek is dying, so they could post Sarah Palin in a less-than-Presidential pose, and the result would be a collective meh.

LordSomber said...

Shades of "The Clam Plate Orgy"...

former law student said...

That is a pointy beard and thus non-Marxist.

The professor exemplifies the old saying that Ev'ry girl's crazy 'bout a sharp dressed man

Methadras said...

Michael said...

I am going with the prophet Mohammed.


Nay. There is no bomb turban.

BAS said...

The real shame, is that Michelle never learned that it is rude to put your elbows on the table. Perhaps next year she can bring etiquette education into the schools.

former law student said...

Something I don't know about Prof. Althouse: Has she got legs? Does she know how to use them?

Methadras said...

What is the shock? Someone is either thought this would be good tea-bag provocation/conservative baiting to spur artificial controversy to push magazines or they are just admitting it out in the open now.

Michael said...

FLS is absolutely right. No Marxist wears a pointed beard. But Rasputin did.

LordSomber said...

Saruman? Or the Winter Warlock?

t-man said...

I see horns and a pointy beard. I'd say it's the devil, not Marx. The devil is also more appropriate imagery to go with the apple.

Is Newsweek subtlely blaming Michelle for Barack's fall? Is she leading us out of the Garden of Eden?

John Hawks said...

We got the print copy in the mail today. The apple on the print copy doesn't look the least bit like a face of any kind. The bright highlight at the top is there, but the two "cheek" highlights in the online photo just aren't in the print copy at all, and the "mustache" doesn't scan as such without the "cheek" highlights. The online photo has been significantly contrast-enhanced compared to the print version, also; the "beard" doesn't show up as a form in the print copy, although the same shaded regions are there.

I don't really see how a standard JPG algorithm would generate those "cheeks" as artifacts; I suspect somebody doctored it.

Mattman26 said...

Reminds me of a joke. Woman goes to a tattoo parlor, requests a tattoo of Elvis on her inner thigh. The guy tattoos her, and she complains it looks nothing like Elvis. The guy disagrees, but offers to do an even better one on the other thigh. Again, she says it looks nothing like Elvis. They argue, and ultimately agree to pick the first guy off the street, bring him in and see if he can identify the likeness; if he doesn't say it's Elvis, she won't have to pay. They bring the guy in. He says, "I don't recognize either guy on the sides, but that's Willie Nelson in the middle!"

Patm said...

What I want to know is, why does Michelle Obama look out of focus in that shot? Why?

John Lynch said...

Jerry Garcia.

Seven Machos said...

I am on my iPhone and I did a real super close look at this suspicious apple. My conclusion startled me but it's right there plain as day. Michelle Obama has a pretty decent rack.

Palladian said...

It's definitely one of the Smith Brothers. I'm thinking it's Mark since Trade's beard is too short.

MadisonMan said...

What Synova said. And Original Mike's 2:53 comment made me laugh. Then I stopped reading.

Palladian said...

So what's this N veek magazine anyway?

Theo Boehm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
d-day said...

That's Michelle's apple she brought with her to the shoot.

I'm not as shocked by obvious-Marx-on-the-apple as I am that Newsweek, NEWSWEEK! did it.

Cedarford said...

I know one thing - spread the word to convince the people of Dubya's "Religion of Peace" that the apple contains an image of the Prophet intended as a joke - and watch the fun.

Within a few days, grovelling members of the 4th Estate will apologize, Newsweek wil say exactly who is imaged on the Apple, fire the photo editor and also apologize for giving Islam, peaceful and freedom-loving as Bush said it was - offense.

Michelle will apologize for her staff even allowing the impression she was making fun of the Prophet, even if they were unaware of it...and emphasize it wasn't the prophet but a 19th Century owner of Newsweek thrown in as a joke.

The riots in several Muslim countries will die down, dead bodies will be buried. And the angry Muslims will demand a billion or so from us on top of the apologies before they resume their peaceful ways. The Israelis will use the riots as a distraction to seize another 2 acres of East Jeusalem - and demand another billion or so from us or they will take another 2 acres of Palestinian land..

AllenS said...

Michelle reached into her barrel of apples, and found out that one bad apple spoils the bunch.

That's why she always looks like she's in a bad mood.

boldface said...

I think it's the guy from ZZ Top. Who else would it be? Ayatollah Khomeini?

John Lynch said...

I'm confused.

When is Althouse serious, and when is she not? I can't tell anymore. I'm giving up.

dbp said...

The apple has the dark mustache but gray beard like Marx. But, as has been pointed out, Marx' beard was rounded.

pm317 said...

I wonder who at Newsweek has an axe to grind against the current WH, hmmm?

Kirstin said...

Why is it Michelle's "fight" against childhood obesity, instead of her campaign or crusade or something else? Did Barbara Bush and Laura Bush fight illiteracy or promote reading? Michelle has a victim mindset.

Barack talked about children who are hungry at the National Prayer Breakfast. Are they on the same page?

Nora said...

Sometimes an apple is just an apple.

The image looks more is more as Engels than Marx, IMO : http://wpage.unina.it/iannicel/AUTORI/Engels.jpg

rhhardin said...

Obama shrine in Krogers.

Mainstream grocery is in the bag for the dems.

John Burgess said...

Looks like either John Brown or the Maharishi Mahesh Yoga to me.

WV: When cats have their own religion... purrhism

Jack Nagel said...

This is so obviously a fake. Look how grainy the SOURCE IMAGE is!

Compare to this, posted on what is apparently a website devoted to Michelle Obama's clothes:

http://mrs-o.org/storage/newsweek.jpg?__SQUARESPACE_CACHEVERSION=1268754354937

The "person" in the apple isn't there. There is an artifact from where the flash hit the apple, and some natural coloration below it.

This garbage is below even you, Ann.

Jeff with one 'f' said...

“We left corporate America, which is a lot of what we’re asking young people to do,” she tells the women. “Don’t go into corporate America. You know, become teachers. Work for the community. Be social workers. Be a nurse. Those are the careers that we need, and we’re encouraging our young people to do that."

Meade said...

Future nurse; future social worker.

Roman said...

Could be Marx, perhaps Groucho, no, Chico? Who cares about a random pattern on a piece of fruit? Why was the apple not properly vetted? Another poor job by this White House!

N. said...

I have a feeling Marx would be afraid of the obama's. We are in such deep do do with this people...

Big Mike said...

I'm sure Newsweek meant it to be someone. Maybe there's a clue in the article?

chuck b. said...

You gotta get yourself a copy of that Newsweek. Posterity! Ebay!

Sixty Grit said...

That is Leon Russell.

Bart Hall (Kansas, USA) said...

Before I read the comments my immediate response was Rasputin.

From Inwood said...

Chris Matthews gets a thrill up his leg every time he sees a socialist.

Under the Slaughter Solution, we can deem this to be anybody we want without actually voting on who we think it is. I deem this a picture of the bearded lady in the side show.

I think that Freudians should have a field day in the apple & Eve references.

BTW, was the apple a natural-born American apple? In which of the 57 states was it grown?

Anti Vigilante said...

You're all wrong.

That's a dude in bondage with an apple shaped ball gag in his mouth.

It's obvious.

You're all such geniuses. Karl Marx was a product of the Bank of England.

Rick Lee said...

My opinion (as a professional, commercial photographer) is that it's a reflection of the lighting equipment (directly and reflected off the shiny table surface) interacting with natural variations in the surface of the apple. It really does look like a bearded man, but I think it's a real leap to say it's Karl Marx. It's a shape that vaguely resembles a bearded man. I don't think it resembles THAT portrait of Marx much at all.

Bob Ellison said...

Craptoid magazine carries packaged theme from First Lady, and the cover designer and editor play a game with it. Who gives a shit?

Alex said...

Rick Lee - BUT they easily could have digitally edited out the reflection of whatever it was. You know that as a professional.

Kansas City said...

I think it is Rielle Hunter without the air brushing at GC.

Methadras said...

I know who is on the face of the Apple. It's Andrew Weil, that bloated, fat fuck of a new age doctor.

virgil xenophon said...

Perhaps it's because I'm a geezer, but the first thought that came to mind is of one of the Smith Bros. from the front of the old b&w "Smith Brothers" cherry cough-drops box.

David said...

Note to Chris whatshisnamelegtingle:

Of course we all see Marx.

I look at Congress and see Groucho, Harpo and Zeppo.

Michael Roston said...

Ann, I'm sitting here looking at my deadtree copy and IT'S NOT THERE. Don't cooperate in making shit up for pageviews.

Kakashi said...

Turns out to be an internet hoax. http://iowntheworld.com/blog/?p=19608

Nichevo said...

The Israelis will use the riots as a distraction to seize another 2 acres of East Jeusalem - and demand another billion or so from us or they will take another 2 acres of Palestinian land..

Hey! Sounds like a plan. Rinse, lather, repeat. Who do we call to get the ball rolling? Best idea you've had all...whenever.

John Lawton said...

Well, you must admit, Marxism is a good cure for obesity (and prosperity)...

The medium of exchange? The "standard Marx!"

Treacle said...

i'm with the rasputin folks. that was the very first thing that popped in my mind.

exhelodrvr1 said...

Marx was all about the children, too. It's a natural fit!

Penny said...

Aside from the suggested apple hubbub, this is an interesting cover. Michelle, with the prominent desk and apple, looks like a teacher there, giving parents sound advice to "Feed Your Children Well". But usually teachers teach students, not their parents. Additionally, it's the students who bring the apple to the teacher? Plus the wording under that is odd. "My fight against childhood obesity". Was Michelle an obese child? Did her parents not feed her well? She's always talked positively about them in the past.

Hm...Mixed messages abound.

The only well done thing about this cover is the single message "Feed Your Children Well".

peter hoh said...

There's no disputin'
That's Rasputin.

Seven Machos said...

Okay, Rasputin people: what's the significance? Is Michelle Obama basically impossible to kill? Does she have some way of magically healing hemophilia (or, perhaps, fatness) in young people? Are we about to have a big revolution as the weak czar dithers with health care?

What is it?

Jamie said...

My husband just subscribed us to Newsweek and I saw the cover last night - I agree with Michael Roston; it's not there.

Roger J. said...

Once again we appear to have pole caulted over a mouse turd

Shanna said...

Michelle looks good in that cover. She should wear that blue more often, instead of the 70's sofa cushion prints she often favors.

Yackums said...

That's no beard. That's a space station.

Actually from one angle it looked like cleavage, and the Mona Lisa (with a black gag over her mouth?).

Rick Lee said...

Magazines like Time and Newsweek that purport to be serious "news" outlets generally don't allow retouching of anything other than color-balance, etc. They are really sensitive about that sort of thing.

MaggotAtBroad&Wall said...

The intrigue is ratcheted up a notch when you consider that Evan Thomas is the grandson of Norman Thomas, a man who ran for president on the Socialist Party in 6 different presidential elections in the early
20th century.

Turtledove said...

Shanna: She does look good but you can't see her butt. If she wants kids to eat better she should just show her behind. It is a cautionary tail ;)

On another note, what bugs me about this whole pet project of Michelle's is that she plans to enforce rather than encourage. She told us often enough during the campaign that she expects much of us.

Rob said...

That's not Marx - that's Johannes Brahms!

Theo Boehm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anga2010 said...

I just saw the actual printed magazine in my doctor's office and the lighting and shading are completely different. No face in the apple at all.

Weezie said...

It is Ayatollah Sayyed Ruhollah Mousavi Khomeini.

This is a signal to Iran to attack.

Run! Run for your lives!

raf said...

I'm surprised nobody has mentioned Benjamin Harrison.

On second thought, nobody ever thinks of Benji.

wv: manon. Yes, that's what everyone is arguing about. Maybe it's Who.

Eric said...

I think John Lynch got it right.

The face bears a remarkable resemblance to Jerry Garcia.

James W Baker said...

As a photographer, the key light in the eye does not match the reflection on the apple. Waxed apples are very reflective, so I am sure that the original apple as recorded is no longer in this image. That "reflection" is no doubt a superimposed face.

NewsWeek must be counting on the mass to be complete idiots to not notice this, because with the proliferation of DSLR cameras and Photoshop, the current population is much more aware of photo-manipulation than in the past.