Friday, March 04, 2005

Friday 4 March 2005

Millionaire Flyer Charged With Security Violations

Shortly after his landing yesterday, from his world-record solo flight of around-the-world without refueling, millionaire Steve Fossett was greated with champagne and marching bands. And two federal marshalls, who arrested Fossstt on security violations.

Homeland Security officials have charged Fossett with numerous infractions, including bypassing security screenings for himself and his luggage, carrying a knife, boxcutter, cigarette lighter and other sharp tools, ignoring flight rules and 'Fasten Seat Belt' signs, excessive drinking and unconfirmed reports of smoking on a No Smoking flight.

Officials are reviewing film and video of Fossett's flight for possible additional charges.

Late last night, Virgin Air founder Richard Branson, sponsor of Fossett's flight, posted bail for Fossett and both left without comment.

Charity Raises $650G For New Monkey Name

An online auction, run by Charity Folks in New York, to benefit a South American habitat, raised nearly $650,000 for the rights to name a new species of the titi monkey.

The winning bidder remained annoymous in the online event, that included TV host Ellen DeGeneres participating in the bidding

The International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature will oversee the naming process, as rules are in place for the integrity of a unique and scientifically-accepted name.

Early reports have the new species being named 'Bernie Ebbers', 'Paris Hilton', 'Pauly Shore' or 'Jeff Gannon'. Both the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature and Charity Folks decline confirmation or comment

Top Ten Cloves: Things Bill Gates Will Do With His Knighthood

10. Anchor the British Navy in San Francisco Bay and challenge Steve Jobs to a duel

9. New screensavers of Queen Elizabeth sitting on flying toasters

8. All searches on MSN must be addressed with 'Sire'

7. Declare the Microsoft campus in Redmond Extradition-Free and offer Safe Haven to Martha Stewart

6. Have his developers figure out how to put Longhorn features into suit of armor

5. Digitize the clock in the Tower of London

4. Forcast increase in sales; Issue order all Britians must purchase Microsoft products

3. File motions to dismiss remaining lawsuits against Microsoft, claiming Diplomatic Immunity

2. Fund for Great Britian a plan to invade and take back all the old British colonies

1. Develop new game for Xbox staring himself - and he always wins!

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Thursday 3 March 2005

Volkswagan Halts Call For Drivers

Citing strong sales, and concern over the driving habits of some of it's customers, Volkswagan is ending it's call for 'Drivers Wanted'.

Since the re-introduction of its' Beattle model, as well as the popular Jetta, Golf and the new Touareg models, Volkwagan sales have soared. Volkswagen's call for 'Drivers Wanted' has brought a hodge-podge of drivers into the Volkswagen family

In a statement released today, Dr. Bernd Pischetsrieder, CEO of Volkswagan, cited that "Volkswagan has all the drivers it needs" and has directed the world-wide divisions to stop calling for more 'Drivers Wanted'.

Sources indicated that Dr. Pischetsrieder was particularly distressed at learning of some of the driving habits of Volkswagan owners and has asked his staff to develop a program where Volkswagan could attract better drivers.

Third of Americans Unaware of New Month

A new USAToday/CNN poll offers that 37% of Americans are unaware that February has ended and March has begun.

In a wide, cross-country sampling, the poll yielded, overall, that 58% of the country hasn't turned their calendars from February to March, 24% still have January showing as the current month, and 3% still write 2004 in their correspondence or on checks.

Additional information from the poll showed that 18% of respondents have 'Joke-of-the-Day' calendars, and 15% have 'This-Day-In-History Calendars. Only 3% of the respondents admitted to still having 'Garlfield' desk calendars.

Stunning Gaffe By Queen Has England in Uproar

By all accounts, it was a stunningly bad day for Buckingham Palace as Great Britian is roiling today over the unprecedented gaffe by Queen Elizabeth

In ceremonies yesterday, the Queen mistakenly bestowed Microsoft founder Bill Gates with an honorary Knighthood that was intended for four native sons, and world-famous guitarists - Brian May, Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin, Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck - whom the Queen didn't recognize.

The guests, which included Phil Collins, Charlotte Church, Cilla Black, Shirley Bassey, Roger Daltrey and Geri Halliwell, were totally surprised as the Queen dubbed Gates a Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.

Gates will get to keep his honoray title (but, as a US citizen, is not entitled to be addressed as 'Sir') and another ceremony will be rescheduled for the guitarists.

The one positive note from the gaffe is that Gates, by way of the Knighthood, is invited to the wedding of Prince Charles. Buckingham Palace has been feverishly soliciting guests to attend the wedding and hasn't ruled out offering more Knighthoods to beef up the list, which currently stands at seven.

Top Ten Cloves: Other Things WorldCom's Bernie Ebbers Didn't Know

10. He was on Paris Hilton cellphone list that got hacked

9. Chris Rock hosted the Oscars this year

8. They broke up AT&T?

7. Martha Stewart is in jail

6. Thought minutes were about clocks, not meetings

5. How to use the telephone system and voicemail; Still has hand-crank phone at home in Mississippi.

4. That the Red Sox won the World Series last year

3. Wow, you're supposed to keep records?

2. J-Lo and Ben Afflack broke up

1. You're kidding, I was in charge of the whole company?

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Wednesday 2 March 2005

Fiorina, Wolfowitz Head List For World Bank

Carli Fiorina, who was fired from her job as head of Hewlett Packard last month and Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul D. Wolfowitz are among the candidate to be the next President of the World Bank.

Fiorina, the only woman on the list, has expressed interest in the job and has detailed her priorities for the position. One of her first acts for the World Bank would be to lead a hostile take-over of Hewlett Packard.

Having run Hewlett Packard for six-years, and includling leading the purchase of former rival Compaq Computer, Fiorina has the big management experience, as well as the detailed knowledge of the inner workings of HP.

Though he has expressed interest, it's doubtful that the Bush Administration would give permission for Wolfowitz to take the post. There's also the likely opposition of European leaders, who would block the nomination.

In a brief interview, Wolfowitz did offer that he has hired he lobbying group, USA Next, the same group that worked with the Swift Boat Veterans during last years' presidental campaign, to help him explore his options.

Wolfowitz indicated that one of his first priorities in the post would be to see the World Bank invade Iran.

Day Three of Swank Thank You's; No End In Sight

In winning her second Oscar at Sunday's Academy Awards for her role of boxer Maggie Fitzgerald in 'Million Dollar Baby', actress Hillary Swank is now in Day Three of thanking people.

Swank spent the balance of Sunday evening and all day Monday thanking director (who also won an Oscar) Clint Eastwood, the town of Carmel, California, and even the handlers of the chimpanze in an earlier Eastwood film, 'Every Which Way But Loose'.

Swank's publicity agent has started posting a daily schedule with the anticipated thank you's Swank will deliver.

Everyone, from the trailer park she grew up in, teachers, school companions, summer camp councilors, and former babysitters have received a 'thank you' from Swank. For a three-hour stretch on Tueday, Swank thanked her drycleaner, supermarket bag boy, and even the people she stood in line with at Starbucks.

Nadar In Early Lobby To Take Pope's Seat

Souces to The Garlic have indicated that Ralph Nader may be lining up to take a run at winning the office of the Pope. The uncertain status of Pope John Paul's health has the perinial candidate stumping in Italy.

Nadar has been seen in the Vatican, and Rome, conducting focus groups, and having lunch with high-powered officials who may be influential with the College of Cardinals.

Though not a Roman Catholic, Nadar feels he's ideally suited for the position, having been a long-time champion of unpopular causes, and an advocate of corporate, political and environmental reforms.

Not confirmed, the sources indicate, is that Nader has submitted an official application to be included in the debates the College of Cardinal may conduct if the need to choose a new Pope arises.

Top Ten Cloves: Reasons CBS Colleagues Don't Watch Dan Rather

10. Had the CSI people investigate him and found some very disturbing things

9. Went on a three-day rant that Peter Jennings stole his UFO idea

8. March Madness to them is a staff meeting with Rather - any month of the year

7. Enters office pools but never puts in any money

6. Tuned him out after he said he thought Jeff Gannon was asking "important" questions

5. Has been stealing Mike Wallace's Wall Street Journal every morning for years

4. Saw 'Million Dollar Baby' the first day and came into office and told everyone the ending

3. Haven't trusted him since the 'frequency' incident

2. Blame him for pushing Walter Cronkite out the door

1. Many know he's sitting behind the news desk with no pants on

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Tuesday 1 March 2005

American Idol, Clear Channel To Go With All-Beyonce Format

Following her ubiquitous appearance at the 77th Academy Awards program Sunday evening, where she sang three of the five Best Song nominations, Beyonce has signed a multi-million-dollar deal to appear on American Idol.

In a separate agreement inked yesterday, Clear Channel announced they will switch their 1,200-station empire to an All-Beyonce format.

On American Idol, while constantents will continue to sign-up for the program, and choose the tune, Beyonce will perform all songs. The program will expand to 90-minutes, to accommodate the wardrobe changes by Beyonce, as her appearance will also be rated in the judging.

Clear Channel, in a deal with both Beyonce and American Idol, will convert their 1,200+ stations to an All-Beyonce format, covering the genres of Hip-Hop, Rap, Pop, Urban, Gospel, Country, Smooth Jazz, Broadway Show Tunes, Jazz, Oldies and World Music.

Clear Channel will promote Beyonce's appearances on American Idol and American Idol will direct viewers to Clear Channel station websites to be able to download the songs she performs on the program.

"This is a real coup for us" offered Clear Channel Radio President, John Hogan. "We're working on a deal that will have Beyonce tour and perform at all our Clear Channel venues".

Hershey Splitting Company, Changing Name, New Tag

Hershey Foods Corp. announced yesterday they will split the company into two new companies - candy and snacks - and take the risky route of launching a new branding campaign.

In a play off the Pork industry's successful promotions, Hershey's Chocolates will now carry the tag - 'The Other White Chocolate'.

Company officials conceded that not all the chocolate they produce is white chocolate but "in the spirit of the campaign", they want to distinguish Hershey Chocolate from other competeing brands.

The tongue-in-cheek campaign was launched with a press conference yesterday, with a barbeque-theme that included 'chocolate' pork chops and baby-back ribs "roasting" on an all-chocolate barbeque.

Company official also announced tie-in products with Ms. Piggy, Babe and, in a retro spot, Arnold Ziffer.

Top Ten Cloves: Other Things Month of March Could Roar In Like

10. Any movie or television program with Pauly Shore in it

9. The Yankee's locker room after Game 7 last year

8. Aaron Brown of CNN, really trying to sound sincere

7. Dan Rather still insisting they got the story right

6. Hewlett Packard, the day Carla Fiorina was fired

5. Donald Trump practicing, in the mirror, saying "You're Fired"

4. Hillary Swank's acceptance speech at the Oscars

3. Andy Sipowicz on a bad hair day

2. Howard Dean's campaign scream

1. Rosanne singing the National Anthem

Monday, February 28, 2005

Monday 28 February 2005

Garlic Extra!
Bush Launches No Pharmaceutical Company Left Behind; Hundreds To Be Laid Off In FDA Reorg

Food and Drug Administration officials will be notified today by the Bush Administration to begin implementing the new policy of 'No Pharmaceutical Company Left Behind'.

Score of hundreds of FDA employees, from executives, administrators and inspectors will either be put into early retirement, or laid off, according to a statement released by Department of Health & Human Services Secretary Michael O. Leavitt.

A White House source indicated, after last week's controversal FDA vote on the continuation of marketing of the huge-selling pain pills Celebrex, Bextra and Vioxx, the No Pharmaceutical Company Left Behind policy was acelerated and, according to the source, the President himself ordered the immediate implementation.

The No Pharmaceutical Company Left Behind policy will substantially reorganize the FDA, with some executives and administrators being moved to other government offices, leaving hundreds, including inspectors to be laid off. The plan offers those laid off to put a portion of their unemployment benefits into a private savings account.

The vote to continue with the marketing of these drugs has come under fire as 10 of the 32 government drug advisors voting, have also been receiving money and/or grants from these same pharmaceutical companies.

The new No Pharmaceutical Company Left Behind policy will forgo the cumbersome and lengthy clinical trials, burdening the pharmaceutical industry with billions in research and development costs. No Pharmaceutical Company Left Behind will allow the companies to register their new drugs with the FDA and begin marketing them immediately. There will be an undisclosed fee for such registration.

Said the White House insider;

"The strategy is a lot like what Ford did with the Pinto back in the seventies … It will be significantly cheaper for the pharma's to deal with any lawsuits if something happens …"

Sirius To Broadcast NASCAR, Other Major Visual Events

In an effort to stay the pace with competitor XM Radio, Sirius Satellite Radio Inc announced they will begin broadcasting NASCAR racing in 2007, as part of a package of new events.

Sirius also announced a number of additional new programming, including art museum show openings, rare stamp collections and
beauty pagents.

Said one Sirius official; "It'll play great on our system … Primo CD-quality audio and we'll have great announcers … It will be better than being there"

New Ken Burns Follow-Up To Baseball; Spotlight On Steroids

Ken Burns, the critically acclaimed independent documentary filmmaker will begin shooting a 200-Hour PBS special, a follow-up on his 1994 Baseball, which over 45-million tuned into, and focusing on the growing steroid controversy

"I had a vision of slowing fading in to a blossoming poppy field, like 10-15-minutes of just observing their innocent beauty and, as we reach a poppy flower, we continue to zoom in and then disolve to a baseball - whack - flying off the end on a bat and sailing, majestically, into the stands at Yankee Stadium … I'll have either Philip Glass or Wynton Marsalis do the music for this section … It will be compelling …"

Burns, whose credits include the Brooklyn Bridge, Frank Lloyd Wright, Lewis and Clark, Jazz and many more, was asked about the proposed length. His 1994 Baseball was only 18-1/2 hours.

"We're going to trace all the drugs used in baseball, from the earliest days, both the team-dispensed drugs, as well as the recreational one's used by the players separate from the game … It's a rather substantial record …"

Burns plans to use many of the narrators used in his previous projects, including the late Stephen Ambrose.

"He has such a great voice … intonation … Plus, he did so many television projects, we can basically cut-and-edit him to be saying anything we want … Whether it's true or not … A lot like his writing …"

Top Ten Cloves: People Who Wish This Year Was A Leap Year

10. Condeleeza Rice - An extra day to visit more army bases in her dominatrix outfit

9. David Spade - How about a Leap No?

8. Bernie Ebbers - Has more time to cram for what else he forgot or didn't do at WorldCom

7. Dan Rather - Will use the time to get to the bottom of this Bush National Guard business

6. Jennifer Lopez - She could ask a fourth man to marry her

5. Microsoft - Will …. Wait a minute … Oh God, a new Leap Year Virus!

4. Howard Stern - What better day to have Stuttering John interview two semi-naked adults dressed like Valentine cherubs?

3. Paris Hilton - Can claim she lost her laptop; Has files of photos of herself semi-naked and playing as a Valentine cherub

2. Debut of new TV Shows: CBS - CSI: Leap Year! … NBC - Law and Order: Leap Year

1. Hundreds of Major League Baseball Players - Extra day to drink cranberry juice in effort to flush steroids from their systems