Longtime CBS newsman Morley Safer of “60 Minutes” and Vietnam War reporting fame dies at 84

Morley Safer, the CBS newsman who changed war reporting forever when he showed U.S. Marines burning the huts of Vietnamese villagers and went on to become the iconic 60 Minutes correspondent whose stylish stories on America’s most-watched news program made him one of television’s most enduring stars, died today in Manhattan. He was 84. He had homes in Manhattan and Chester, Conn.

Safer was in declining health when he announced his retirement last week; CBS News broadcast a long-planned special hour to honor the occasion on Sunday May 15 that he watched in his home.

A huge presence on 60 Minutes for 46 years — Safer enjoyed the longest run anyone ever had on primetime network television. Though he cut back a decade ago, he still appeared regularly until recently, captivating audiences with his signature stories on art, science and culture. A dashing figure in his checked shirt, polka dot tie and pocket square, Morley Safer — even his name had panache — was in his true element playing pool with Jackie Gleason, delivering one of his elegant essays aboard the Orient Express or riffing on Anna Wintour, but he also asked the tough questions and did the big stories. In 2011, over 18.5 million people watched him ask Ruth Madoff how she could not have known her husband Bernard was running a billion-dollar Ponzi scheme. The interview was headline news and water cooler talk for days.

“This is a very sad day for all of us at 60 Minutes and CBS News. Morley was a fixture, one of our pillars, and an inspiration in many ways.”

In some of his later 60 Minutes pieces, Safer profiled the cartoonists of The New Yorker, interviewed the founder and staff of Wikipedia and reported on a billion-dollar art trove discovered in a Munich apartment. In his last story broadcast on March 13, he profiled the visionary architect Bjarke Ingels.

“Morley was one of the most important journalists in any medium, ever,” said CBS Chairman and CEO, Leslie Moonves. “He broke ground in war reporting and made a name that will forever be synonymous with 60 Minutes. He was also a gentleman, a scholar, a great raconteur – all of those things and much more to generations of colleagues, his legion of friends, and his family, to whom all of us at CBS offer our sincerest condolences over the loss of one of CBS’ and journalism’s greatest treasures.”

“This is a very sad day for all of us at 60 Minutes and CBS News. Morley was a fixture, one of our pillars, and an inspiration in many ways. He was a master storyteller, a gentleman and a wonderful friend. We will miss him very much,” said Jeff Fager, the executive producer of 60 Minutes and Safer’s close friend and one-time 60 Minutes producer.

CBS News President David Rhodes said, “Morley Safer helped create the CBS News we know today. No correspondent had more extraordinary range, from war reporting to coverage of every aspect of modern culture. His writing alone defined original reporting. Everyone at CBS News will sorely miss Morley.”

Safer was a familiar reporter to millions when he replaced Harry Reasoner on 60 Minutes in 1970. A much-honored foreign correspondent, Safer was the first U.S. network newsman to film a report inside Communist China. He appeared regularly on the CBS Evening News from all over the world, especially Vietnam, where his controversial reporting earned him peer praise and government condemnation.

“Morley Safer helped create the CBS News we know today. No correspondent had more extraordinary range, from war reporting to coverage of every aspect of modern culture.”

Safer’s piece from the Vietnamese hamlet of Cam Ne in August of 1965 showing U.S. Marines burning the villagers’ thatched huts was cited by New York University as one of the 20th century’s best pieces of American journalism. Some believe this report freed other journalists to stop censoring themselves and tell the raw truth about war. The controversial report on the “CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite” earned Safer a George Polk award and angered President Lyndon Johnson so much, he reportedly called CBS President Frank Stanton and said, “Your boys shat on the American flag yesterday.” Some Marines are said to have threatened Safer, but others thanked him for exposing a cruel tactic. Safer said that the pentagon treated him with contempt for the rest of his life.

He spent three tours (1964-’66) as head of the CBS Saigon bureau. His helicopter was shot down in a 1965 battle, after which Safer continued to report under fire. In 1990, he penned a memoir of his Vietnam experience, “Flashbacks: On Returning to Vietnam” (Random House), in which he goes back to reminisce and to interview the enemy’s veterans.

When he joined Mike Wallace at the beginning of 60 Minutes’ third season, they toiled to put stories on the air for a program that dodged cancellation each season. But their work was immediately recognized with an Emmy for Safer’s 1971 investigation of the Gulf of Tonkin incident that began America’s war in Vietnam. The two pressed on for five years, moving the broadcast from the bottom fourth to the middle of the rankings. Then in August 1975, with a new Sunday evening timeslot, Safer put 60 Minutes on the national stage. Interviewing Betty Ford, the first lady shocked many Americans by saying she would think it normal if her 18-year-old daughter were having sex. The historic sit-down also included frank talk about pot and abortion.

By 1978, the broadcast was in Nielsen’s Top 10. Safer’s eloquent, sometimes quirky features balanced out the program’s “gotcha” interviews and investigations, perfecting the news magazine’s recipe. It became the number-one program for the 1979-’80 season – a crown it won five times. 60 Minutes remained in the top 10 for an unprecedented 23 straight seasons.

It was another Safer story that would become one of the program’s most honored and important. “Lenell Geter’s in Jail,” about a young black man serving life for armed robbery in Texas, overturned Geter’s conviction 10 days after the December 1983 segment exposed a sloppy rush to injustice. Safer and 60 Minutes were honored with the industry’s highest accolades: the Peabody, Emmy and duPont-Columbia University awards. 60 Minutes founder Don Hewitt often pointed to the story as the program’s finest work.

Facebook Ray-Ban scam: how to remove spam and avoid being hacked

Facebook users are urged to be vigilant against online scams after suspicious posts advertising discounted Ray-Ban sunglasses appeared on pages and in comments.

The scam is designed to trick users into visiting a knock off Ray-Ban store online where they could be at risk of their bank details being stolen, receive fake Ray-Ban glasses or not receive any items at all after paying.

The scam hijacks Facebook accounts, spams messages on the user’s behalf and tags numerous other Facebook users to spread the scam.

The spam post has appeared on numerous Facebook pages and in comments and reads: “Ray-Ban glasses! 80% discount! Only one day! Be sure not to miss it!” with a link to www.raystore-uk.eu.


What Do So Many Celebrities See in Ray-Ban’s Wayfarer Sunglasses?

  • Advertising & Branding

Style and color are very important when it comes to sunglasses, but as any fashionista—or just anyone who lives in L.A.—will tell you, no frames get hot until celebrities put them on.

In 1955, James Dean did.

Photo: Nick Ferrari

Their maker, Ray-Ban, called them Wayfarers.

Fresh from the drafting table of Raymond Stegeman, Wayfarers were unlike any other eyewear that had come before. Made of plastic instead of metal, its temples flared, the Wayfarer was a rebellious thing—probably why Dean, the 24-year-old star of Rebel Without a Cause, put them on.

Then Audrey Hepburn put them on. That was 1961, when Breakfast at Tiffany’s introduced America to daring suggestions of divorce. Givenchy designed Hepburn’s dresses, but Ray- Ban completed the look. Soon, Hollywood stars including Marilyn Monroe, Cary Grant and Kim Novak had put Wayfarers on. In Nashville, Roy Orbison followed suit, as did a guitarist in New York named Bob Dylan.

America had a new president in 1961, and many thought that he’d put Wayfarers on, too. In fact, JFK wore the American Optical brand (a knockoff) but no matter: The frames looked like Wayfarers, and that was close enough. Overnight, millions of American men tried to imitate the Camelot style—which meant that they put Wayfarers on, too.

What was it about these frames? Their distinctive shape possessed the ability to dress up drab outfits while dressing down formal ones. The Wayfarer’s “distinctive trapezoidal frame spoke a nonverbal language that hinted at dangerousness,” the critic Stephen Bayley has written. That’s probably why Andy Warhol and John Lennon put their Wayfarers on, too.

Even though Debbie Harry and John Belushi had their Wayfarers on, sales were in the ditch by the late 1970s. So Ray-Ban found a new way to get celebrities to wear the goods: product placement. Tom Cruise put Wayfarers on for 1983’s Risky Business. Then Don Johnson put them on, as did Don Henley, Johnny Marr and Madonna. Corey Hart wore his sunglasses at night, and by 1987, as Michael Jackson was setting off on his Bad tour, he’d put Wayfarers on, too.

Today, Italian optical giant Luxottica licenses the right to make Wayfarers, which it reintroduced in 2006 as a pristine copy of the 1952 original. Times and tastes have changed a lot over 60 years, but the cultural impetus of Wayfarers is now unstoppable. “They’re one of the first things that come to mind when people think of sunglasses,” said Jordan Silver, co-owner of New York’s Silver Lining Opticians, and he is in a position to know. Vintage Wayfarers–when Silver can get them–can go for $800. Of course, prices like that are a pittance for the latest generation of celebrities to put Wayfarers on, including Johnny Depp, Robert Pattinson, James Franco, Jude Law and Orlando Bloom. We’d list more, but we hate to name drop.

Rand Paul yanks Ray-Bans after complaint

Ray-Ban has asked Sen. Rand Paul’s presidential campaign to quit selling the brand’s Wayfarer sunglasses, which Paul had imprinted with the “Rand” logo.

The Rand-Ban sunglasses were for sale for $150 on Paul’s website as recently as Tuesday. The website described the product as “the intersection of politics and cool.”


But the campaign didn’t have Ray-Ban’s consent, and the company didn’t think that was cool.

“We learned that the Rand Paul campaign had been selling Ray-Ban sunglasses imprinted with the “Rand” logo without our consent,” Jane Lehman, head of corporate communications for Luxottica, that parent company of Ray-Ban, wrote in an email to The Hill.

“After a formal request from us, they promptly removed the product from their site and agreed to cease any further use of our trademarks,” she wrote.

Paul’s campaign, which has featured the product on its cyber store, declined to comment for this story.

One picture on Paul’s website showed President John F. Kennedy wearing the iconic glasses atop his head next to a picture of Paul with a similar pair of glasses.

“I can hear Senator Bentsen now, ‘I knew Jack Kennedy and you’re no Jack Kennedy,’ ” a caption on the site said. “Well, you and I may not be Jack Kennedy, but Rand likes Raybans and now we can all own Rand branded Raybans.”

“$150 is more than you might normally pay for sunglasses, but these are Raybans and even more, they are indelibly marked with the Rand Brand … and as always, it’s a contribution to the Rand Paul for President campaign,” the site said.

Ray-Ban asks Rand Paul to stop selling ‘Rand’ Wayfarer sunglasses

Sen. Rand Paul’s presidential campaign has reportedly stopped selling Ray-Ban Wayfarers imprinted with the “Rand” logo, after the sunglasses company complained that the campaign didn’t have consent.

The $150 sunglasses, described on Mr. Paul’s website as “the intersection of politics and cool,” were for sale as recently as Tuesday, The Hillreported.

“We learned that the Rand Paul campaign had been selling Ray-Ban sunglasses imprinted with the ‘Rand‘ logo without our consent,” Jane Lehman, who handles corporate media at Ray-Ban’s parent company Luxottica, told The Hill.

“After a formal request from us, they promptly removed the product from their site and agreed to cease any further use of our trademarks,” she said.

A description for the sunglasses on Mr. Paul’s website showed President John F. Kennedy wearing Wayfarers on his head next to a picture of Mr. Paul with a similar pair of glasses, The Hill reported.

“I can hear Senator Bentsen now, ‘I knew Jack Kennedy and you’re no Jack Kennedy,’” the description read. “Well, you and I may not be Jack Kennedy, but Rand likes Raybans and now we can all own Rand branded Raybans.”

After Ray-Ban complaint, Rand Paul’s campaign store pulls custom sunglasses


Among 12-packs of “Rand on a Stick” freedom paddles, NSA Spy Cam blockers, and other quirky paraphernalia, presidential candidate Rand Paul’s online campaign store also sold a product at “the intersection of politics and cool” — Rand-branded Wayfarer sunglasses. But after a complaint lodged by eyewear manufacturer Ray-Ban, the campaign store has pulled them from its virtual shelves.

“When we learned that the Rand Paul campaign was selling Ray-Ban sunglasses imprinted with the “Rand” logo without our consent, we sent them a formal request to remove the product from their site, which they did promptly,” Jane Lehman, spokesperson for Ray-Ban public parent company Luxottica, told CBSNews in a statement.

Ray-Ban asked the Rand Paul campaign to remove the glasses after its parent company was first alerted to their existence by CBS News. Lehman also told CBS News that selling Ray Ban merchandize with the “Rand” logo was actually illegal.

“Ray-Ban is not at all a political brand – we’re focused on making sunglasses that people love,” the spokesperson told CBS.

The campaign was selling the eyewear for $150 — a price the campaign acknowledged was “more than you might normally pay for sunglasses.” The store noted in a caption that the allure came from the fact that glasses were “indelibly marked with the Rand Brand.”

One photo on the campaign’s site depicted President Kennedy wearing the popular Ray-Ban shades.

“You and I may not be Jack Kennedy, but Rand likes Raybans and now we can all own Rand branded Raybans,” the website read. The glasses are not “made in the U.S.A.,” but are actually manufactured in Italy.

Paul, whose draw with younger demographics has provided a launching pad for his recently-announced presidential campaign, uses the store to raise money for his 2016 White House bid.

Paul’s campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Six places you didn’t know you could ski

TIRED of the usual runs and quaint chalets?

If a trip to Queenstown or The Alps doesn’t excite you like it used to, perhaps you need an extreme change of scene.

Don’t try this if you’re not a seasoned skier.

Don’t try this if you’re not a seasoned skier.Source:Flickr


Roughly 80km away from the hustle and bustle of Marrakech is Oukaïmeden; a ski resort that sits high in the Atlas Mountains. It’s hard to believe you’re in subtropical Africa when you’re here.

What’s really cool about this spot, is that because of its high location it calls for Africa’s highest chair lift, which reaches 10,640 feet up to the peak of Jebel Attar. Does that visual make you giddy? Don’t worry, you can also use a donkey to climb the resort’s seven ski runs.

For the seasoned skier, the slopes might not be groomed to a standard you’d be used to, but if you’re a collector of wild ski destinations, add this one to your list.


Meaning, “white mountain”, Mauna Kea is a dormant volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island. At 14,000 feet high, it is the only volcano in Hawaii that has evidence of glaciation; and has formed an ice cap at the tip of its summit.
The highest point in the archipelago, you will notice at the peak of the volcano there are no resorts or crafted runs. There’s no ski lift either. So if you might want to think about hiring a 4WD and taking turns with your friends to drive up and down the mountain.
If you’re after a hard core, unrefined skiing experience, this is your destination.


Probably one of the last places you’d consider a ski holiday, Puncak Jaya (Carstensz Pyramid) is the highest mountain of Mount Carstensz in the Sudirman Range.
While the mountain has four glaciers, the tip of the Meren Glacier has the only skiable peak in the area; Ngga Pulu which is towers over the mountain at 15,950 feet. The rest of the summit is bare rock so it does require a full expedition to access the area.
Get in quick though, unfortunately due to global warming the glaciers are melting at a rapid rate.
Shredding it down Broadway (it’s the name of the slope).
Shredding it down Broadway (it’s the name of the slope).Source:Flickr
Think of California and thoughts of the Beach Boys, hot summer nights in LA and the glitz and glamour of Hollywood will be conjured. But take a 50-minute flight inland and you’ll find the imposing Mammoth Mountain.
It has the highest summit in the state and boasts an impressive 400 inches of snowfall each year. The resorts hosts excellent facilities, so if you’re a first-timer or you’re a fan of a little more luxury this place is for you.
You can spend days exploring the 3500 acres in the park, with a variety of chutes, runs and glades to have a go on.
5. TIFFINDELL, SOUTH AFRICAOK, so it’s a mix of both man-made and natural snow at Tiffindell Ski Resort, but how many places can you ski and go on safari in one day?
The slopes are on the highest mountain in the Cape’s southern Drakensberg so the snow lasts longer which makes it perfect for a week away. The season runs from May to September, but considering it’s located in a climate where there isn’t enough precipitation it calls for snow-making systems. This doesn’t detract from the incredible fact that you’re skiing in Africa.
A day ticket is also roughly 385 South African rand, which is about $35 Australian.
A slope with a view.
A slope with a view.Source:istock
Also the home of the Olympian Gods and the Zeus’s thrown, Olympus is actually now home to a remote ski resort that is operated by the Greek military.
As many would know, it’s the highest mountain in Greece at 9750 feet. Appropriately enough, the slopes are names after Greek Gods, such as Aphrodite and Hermes.
The local resort, Elatohori is well equipped for experienced and beginner skiers alike; with a track for snowboarding, chalets and two ski schools.
Skiing Mt Olympus



China bans ‘erotic’ banana-eating live streams

Chinese live-streaming services have banned people filming themselves eating bananas in a “seductive” fashion.

New regulations mean that live-streaming sites must monitor all their output round-the-clock to ensure nothing untoward is going on, keeping an eye out for any “erotic” banana-eating, according to New Express Daily. It’s not just fruit that’s on their radar though – the paper adds that wearing stockings and suspenders while hosting a live stream is now also forbidden.

The move is the authorities’ latest attempt to clamp down on “inappropriate and erotic” online content, state-controlled CCTV reports. In April, the Ministry of Culture announced it was investigating a number of popular live-streaming platforms for allegedly hosting pornographic or violent content that “harms social morality”.

Despite the government’s concerns, such sites are attracting more and more users in China. Particularly popular are webcam sessions where young women – and sometimes girls under 18 – entertain a predominantly male audience, often singing Chinese songs or chatting to their viewers.

New Express Daily cites data showing that 26% of live-streaming viewers are under 18, while 60% of those creating the content are under 22 years old. Three-quarters of those watching are male, it says.

News of the banana ban has prompted thousands of users to chime in on Chinese social media. Some are more concerned with the young women choosing to take part in live streaming, but others are a bit baffled by how the rules will be enforced. “How do they decide what’s provocative when eating a banana?” one person asks. Another wonders: “Can male live-streamers still eat them?”

And plenty think people will be able to get around the banana ban: “They will all start eating cucumbers, and if that’s no good, yams,” one user says.

Army has fewest active duty soldiers since 1940, report says

The number of U.S. Army soldiers on active duty has been reduced to its lowest since 1940, according to a published report.

The Army Times reported this weekend that the Army’s endstrength for March was 479,172. That’s 154 fewer soldiers than the service’s previous post-World War II low, which was reached during the Army’s post-Cold War drawdown in 1999.

The current number is still well above the 269,023 soldiers on duty in 1940, the year before America entered World War II. However, the report says the active force has been reduced by more than 16,500 troops over the past year — the equivalent of about three brigades.

According to the Army Times, the Army is on track to reach its goal of reducing the number of active duty troops to 475,000 by Sept. 30, the end of fiscal year 2016. Under a drawdown plan unveiled last July, the number of active-duty soldiers would be reduced to 460,000 soldiers by the end of fiscal year 2017 and 450,000 by the end of fiscal year 2018, barring action by Congress or the Pentagon.

If those targets are met, the number of soldiers on active duty would be down 20 percent from 2010, when there were nearly 570,000 soldiers on active duty.

When the Army presented its plan last July, military officials said their hands were tied by reduced funding levels.

“These are not cuts the Army wants to make, these are cuts required by budget environment in which we operate,” Gen. Daniel Allyn, vice chief of staff of the Army, said at the time. “This 40,000 soldier cut … will only get us to the program force, it does not deal with the continued threat of sequestration.”

The Army Times report said that 2,600 soldiers departed active service in March without being replaced.

In addition to those on active duty, the Army has 548,024 soldiers in reserve, for a total force of 1,027,196 soldiers. Under the drawdown plan, the total force number would be reduced to 980,000 by the end of fiscal year 2018.

One hell of a hangover: Stag party reveller wakes up to find a pair of ‘Ray-Ban’ sunglasses tattooed on his FACE

A stag do reveller couldn’t believe his eyes when he woke up with a pair of glasses tattooed onto his face.

The party-goer looked in the mirror after the night out and thought his friends had drawn around his eyes with marker pen.

But when he tried to wash the markings off, he realised it was a permanent tattoo, which included the word ‘Rayban’ etched into his skin.

The man in his fifties has since spent two years getting the sunglasses tattoo lasered off of his face.

The man, from Swansea, South Wales, was on a stag weekend in Blackpool when he had the tattoo inked on to his face as a drunken dare.

He has agreed to speak about his ordeal on condition that he is not named.

He said: ‘I had no memory of getting the tattoo because I had gone out celebrating and it happened when I was drunk. Waking up the morning after, I thought someone had used a permanent marker on my face.

‘When I first came home, obviously I was subject to a lot of stares, but I kind of got used to the tattoo and decided not to get rid of it.’