Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Wednesday 14 September 2005

Robertson To Ballmer: "I've Got Your Back"

Looking to Strike Deal With Microsoft Chief For Help With Offing Chavez

In a scenario right out of Alfred Hitchcock's 'Strangers On A Train', inside sources tell The Garlic that 700 Club Host Pat Robertson has sent a private message to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer that read, in part, 'I've got your back", and "you help me with Chavez and I'll help you with Google."

Robertson ignited an uproar back in August, when on his 700 Club television program, he suggested United States should "assassinate" Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

"We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability. We don’t need another 200-billion-dollar war to get rid of one strong-arm dictator. It’s a whole lot easier to have some of the covert operatives do the job and then get it over with."

Robertson later apologized and toned down his remarks, saying it was an "adlib" but sources close to Robertson say he has been "obsessed" with Chavez and has sought out others who could help him "eliminate" him.

His outreach to Ballmer comes on the heels of courts documents released last week, in which Ballmer unleashed a torrent of invectives aimed at Google CEO Eric Schmidt, when advised that one of his senior engineers was leaving Microsoft to go to work at Google.

Robertson is said to have sent the communication to Ballmer via private courier.

A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed that Ballmer has spoken with Robertson, but offered no information on the substance of their discussions.

Sources inside Microsoft say the Ballmer remains "highly agitated" over the defection of employees to Google.

Yesterday, in Seattle, a King County Superior Court Judge ruled that former Microsoft executive Kai-Fu Lee can work for Google, but in a limited capacity.

Ballmer, allegedly, went on a rampage in the company's parking lot, smashing windows, setting off a cacophony of car alarms that drew a response from the local fire department. Witnesses say that Ballmer was "enraged" and "swearing a lot". Most of the automobiles damaged belonged to Asian employees of Microsoft.

The U.S. State Department, in a statement released yesterday, stated "they have no information on any conversations between Mr. Robertson and Mr. Ballmer".

Chavez has had an icy relationship with the United States, and, in particular, the Bush Administration. He has been critical of U.S. foreign policy and his position in OPEC has irritated the administration. The Bush team has continually refused to recognize Chavez, favoring the government of Pedro Carmona.

A spokesperson for Google indicated they were looking into the matter.

On Monday, Google announced that they were omitting Microsoft from their search results. The spokesperson stated that, if there any "any substance" to the charges, "Google will likely drop the 700 Club from the algorithm as well".

"You guys sure you're cool with the apology? I mean, are we square now? Do I have to come down here anymore?"

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