19 September 2007

Microsoft Drives Me Crazy

In what must be one of the saddest stories of all time, the cyber-pirate Microsoft Corporation lost its appeal and may be forced to pay a record €497 million court fine for anti-competitive practices in Europe. Bill Gates will get to celebrate Talk Like a Pirate Day with a giant, "Arrr, matey! Shiver me timbers!" after the European Union pillaged and plundered the booty in Gates' bank accounts.

The Federal Reserve cut key interest rates in a move designed to improve America's economy. Hopefully the new energy in the economy will generate enough scratch for Bill Gates to pay off the right people in Europe.

One of the day's most interesting stories was the L.A. Times piece on the multimillion dollar cache of fine art in Iran that is kept in a basement. The works of Picasso, Van Gogh, Pollock, Warhol, Monet, Pissarro and Bacon are kept in an underground room with the public unable to view the art because of political and religious concerns. Perhaps we could sell Iran some of our more modern artistic treasures like Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan so they can also keep them hidden from public view.

Immigration and issues of illegal aliens come up in interesting places, including the fine wine industry, where wineries that require manual labor in order to harvest the best product are under strain because of tighter border security limiting their potential pool of workers. I don't know how many illegal immigrants it takes to make my favorite single vineyard California Pinot Noir, but if the quality of California wine goes down, I'll be more than happy to buy my single vineyard Pinot Noir from Burgundy.

Today's favorite conduit for controversy is Andrew Meyer, the University of Florida student who was subdued by police Taser in a video that was featured in a post here yesterday. Critics are starting to question his credentials as a journalist after reading some of his editorials that were basically senseless rants with little to no fact checking. Hey,
famouswriterman, I guess Andy Warhol's prognostication of everybody having 15 minutes of fame was pretty accurate.

Also in regards to the difference between fame and infamy, the Dallas Cowboys signed embroiled defensive lineman Tank Johnson to a two-year contract. Luckily for Tank, he's more difficult to tackle and take down with a Taser than Andrew Meyer was, so the police will usually ask Johnson nicely to turn himself in when he's a wanted man. Unluckily for the NFL, Johnson is also a magnet for trouble. Hopefully he can stay out of jail long enough to face the Bears in the post-season.

Speaking of football players and felonies, Texas is leading the nation in players suspended and crimes (allegedly) committed this season after Coach Mack Brown suspended running back James Henry for being charged with two felonies in retaliation for a separate incident involving two other Texas football players and an (alleged) armed robbery. Mack Brown is allegedly the coach, and allegedly he recruited these felons, so if the University of Texas is indeed allegedly an institution of higher learning, they should fix some of these real problems before the governor calls the National Guard to take down your roving (and 6th- or 7th-ranked) gang of thugs.

Finally, in vegetarian news, Alicia Silverstone is getting naked to promote vegetarianism. It's good to see that her cruelty-free diet has helped her to shed some of that Batman weight. I have had a hankering for Silverstone since her appearance in the Aerosmith videos, so she does qualify as an animal product I would eat.

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