Friday, July 13, 2007

Laundry List

- Still no news from Turkmenistan on official blog status for As Good As News-

-Yesterday's news was simply too much grist for the As Good As News mill. Although we ran a lengthy post, we did not cover at least four stories that appeared, on the surface, to have comic potential. Today we get a second look, as several items generated follow-up headlines.

-Poland's Jewish culture festival is held without Jews, clearly a line in here for Jay Leno (festival forgot to include Yiddish translation on the invitations? Silly goyim scheduled festival on Jewish holiday?) , but Poland's Jews are missing thanks to pogroms, Auschwitz and Commies- may need cooling off period of several more centuries before this is ready for serious comedy.-

-Libyan court upholds death sentences for five Bulgarian nurses in story that includes a wild tale about Mossad's spread of AID's virus, Libyan Kangaroo Court (and Libyan populace) that will believe any crazy anti-Israel conspiracy theory rather than recognize Libya's medical facilities had sanitary problems and perversion of Islamic justice tradition of compensation into state sponsored kidnap for ransom. Combination of Libyan lunacy and Bulgarian nurses in prison sounds like great sketch material - Monty Python as the nurses, Sacha Baron Cohen as Muslim judge/cleric/Mossad agent, cameo for Juliette Binoche as Mme Sarkozy who visited the nurses yesterday - will be funny when nurses are released.

-China's "government of laws" rushes to justice with instant execution of Zheng Xiaoyu, head of Chinese FDA who confessed to taking bribes. This happened so fast it seems more like a publicity stunt than justice served. Express line execution of one scapegoat, even a guilty scapegoat, shows one party system in a reactionary fit, not a legal system that will consistently enforce health and safety laws. Today's NY times carries three follow up stories: 1) Zheng Xiaoyu had a history as a reformer, maybe some of his old enemies were happy to open that express line for him; 2) China demonstrates commitment to health and safety by refusing to allow the doctor who blew the whistle on SARs virus cover up to collect his medal in the USA, health OK as long as it does not embarrass party leaders; 3) Inexpensive Chinese autos seek European market - how cheap do these things need to be to overcome Chinese record on product safety? Any chance autos come with toothpaste instead of antifreeze? -

-Governor Corzine will stop using e-mail altogether as the result of wrangle over demands for release of e-mail to former lover (also Union leader). Many would ask if he is switching to papyrus scrolls and quill pens or going straight to the chisel and stone tablet. Any lawyer who ever had to collect and review boxes of e-mail print outs as part of pretrial discovery knows the kind of horror stories that inevitably appear. Consider the case of Whole Foods CEO, who uses pseudonyms to post inside information on chat boards touting Whole Foods stock and boasts that Whole Foods is destroying a competitor market by market - just before an acquisition of that competitor that triggers FTC review. This guy's lawyers will definitely have no trouble paying college tuition for large families. So, keyboard a deadly weapon in hands of CEOs. Smart move Guv Corzine, pick up the phone if hammer and chisel gets tiring.

Upstate NY Native Americans establish lacrosse league, including junior programs. Sounds like great combination of tradition and fun (pictured above), no strippers at post game party please.

-Tax Loopholes Sweeten Deal For Blackstone -NY Times includes explanatory diagram on use of corporate structure that allows preservation, and later amortization, of goodwill. Congratulations, the diagram actually works and in-depth explanation a nice first step. Now, could we please see one business tax story that does not use the word "loophole" twenty times, including headline, does not label a deduction as an "annuity" and does not assume that the outcome of the tax question at hand must always be higher taxes in order to preserve truth, justice and the American way. Sure the bias is in expert quotes, but you are the NY Times, do you really think there is only one expert on this?

No comments: