Blame It All On Bin Laden

Couldn’t have been my fault I was in the corporate doghouse. — Ed

A former senior executive at AMD is now suing the company for racist, religious bias. You can read the allegations here.

The ex-exec is claiming that once the other AMD executives discovered he was Muslim and Arabic, he was dog meat.

Well, jeez, who’d have thunk it with a good Irish name like Walid Maghribi? 🙂

The Mercury article portrays Jerry Sanders as having less than encyclopedic knowledge about the Middle East and its people. Nor will he be accused of benevolent sensitivity. You can almost hear behind his words, “You’re Lebanese, not one of those camel jockeys, aren’t you?”

Americans generally don’t understand that being an Arab is not quite the same as being, say German. It’s not based on ethnicity. If your mother tongue is Arabic and (with a few exceptions) your religion is Islam, then you generally consider yourself Arabic.

Anyhow, the suit alleges that AMD execs started cracking ethnic jokes in front of him and gave him “absurd” and “insulting” tasks that forced him to quit within a few months.

Please note, he wasn’t fired, or demoted. Please note, he got paid $6 million dollars in 2001. I could stand a few ethnic jokes for that kind of money.

Maybe Jerry Sanders is a real cracker, but isn’t he heading out the door? Maybe the rear-end sniffers just played “follow the leader.” Gee, that never happens in the corporate world, does it?

OK, we know whom not to pick as our next ambassador to Saudi Arabia after he retires, but is this pure blatant bias? Maybe AMD execs need some sensitivity training, but maybe one particular ex-AMD exec needs some desensitivity training, too.

There’s one little detail Mr. Maghribi doesn’t talk about at all. What did he do for AMD? He was President of the Memory Group. Memory as in flash memory, which has been losing money left and right for AMD and is the principal reason why AMD has been losing money lately.

Now that couldn’t possibly have anything to do with Mr. Maghribi being in the corporate doghouse, could it?

No, better to blame it all on Bin Laden.


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