Multi-National Organization Is Upset With the White House

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Mad as Hellenic

Some Greeks are upset with how White House officials handled the annual Greek Independence Day Commemoration Wednesday. The president of the nation's largest and oldest Greek-American organization wrote a letter to President Obama to express his "disappointment" over what he saw as a lack of respect displayed to his organization.

Ike Gulas' complaints ranged from important people being left off the invitation list for the scheduled festivities to charging that the invitations that did go out were so late that it made last-minute travel difficult, at best.

Gulas also questioned the overall vetting process of the invitees. We're still waiting for a response from the White House.

Nordic Track

Brazilian President Lula da Silva isn't exactly colorblind when it comes to who he thinks is to blame for the global economic crisis. The Financial Times reports Lula told reporters Thursday, "The crisis was caused by the irrational behavior of white people with blue eyes, who before the crisis appeared to know everything and now demonstrate that they know nothing." He added, "I do not know any black or indigenous bankers so I can only say [it is wrong] that this part of mankind which is victimized more than any other should pay for the crisis."

Vice President Joe Biden is scheduled to meet with President Lula and other Latin American leaders this weekend which could be a little awkward, since the vice president is a white person with blue eyes.

Similar Styles

Another off-color statement — this time from Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi earlier this week. When a journalist said Berlusconi's response to the economic crisis made him seem like the U.S. President, the Italian Prime Minister quipped, "I'm paler, because it's been so long since I went sunbathing. He's more handsome, younger and taller."

Shortly after the U.S. election, Berlusconi was accused of racism and forced to apologize when he called president Obama "suntanned." Berlusconi complained that his critics had no sense of humor.

Start Your Engines

And finally, if you're in the market for a black car in California, you better buy it quickly. The California Legislature is actually considering regulating the color of cars and the reflectivity of paint to reduce carbon emissions.

Darker colors don't reflect very well and therefore climate control systems in those cars have to work much harder to stay cool compared to their lighter colored counterparts, at least according to the California Air Resources Board.

The Washington Post reports the legislature is considering the extreme — including banning the sale of jet black cars. The Post reports if approved, the new regulations would be phased in as early as 2012.

— FOX News Channel's Zachary Kenworthy contributed to this report.

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