Friday, April 29, 2005

California Company Fills Cruise Ship With Programmer Seamen

(04/29/05 wire service)
"Outsourcing" – which has become synonymous with sending American jobs to India or China – could soon mean foreign workers sleeping in ships just a few miles off America's coasts.

In an outrageous affront to U.S. labor laws, a California company plans to anchor a 600-cabin cruise ship just beyond the three-mile limit off the coast of El Segundo, near Los Angeles, and stock it with foreign software programmers.

The company, SeaCode, will seek to classify the workers as "seamen," avoiding U.S. payroll taxes and the need for immigration visas. Programmers from places like India and Russia would work 8-hour or 10-hour shifts, either day or night. Take-home pay: About $21,500 a year.

In a related story:

After a six-month hiatus on Fire Island, producers from Queer Eye for the Straight Guy announced that they will be devoting an entire season to "making over" the residents of the SeaCode vessel. With filming scheduled to begin in July, the Fab Five will moor their Bravo production yacht, "The Jolly Roger," to the SeaCode cruise ship and film episodes, as one production assistant put it, "...berth-by-berth until they've gone through all the seamen."

Producers for the popular Bravo show also announced a spinoff series coming out later next year that they're tentatively titling, "Steamy Foreign Programmers Gone Wild."

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Abdullah Leaves Crawford Smugger and Richer than Before

With their "Meeting of the Mind" Summit over, Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia bid President Bush a fond farewell and returned to the oil rich fields of his homeland with only a short 3-hour layover in Atlanta to visit his favorite gentleman's club, Chunkie's.

President Bush said to the press corps that the prince knew where he stood and that they had come to a "meeting of the mind." In their meeting the President stressed America's concern over the high price of crude oil, our country's continuing reliance on Saudi resources, and the President's penchant for the superb hasish that flows from Riyadh via the UAE. All the while, sources say, the prince just nodded and smiled.

Historical footnotes:

President Bush's nickname for Prince Abdullah is "Prince Abbey," while the prince's nickname for George Bush is "Chhaddah Ahbid."

During the seven hour meeting, Prince Abdullah's personal wealth increased by 185 million dollars in oil sales.

President Bush is 5'11" tall. Prince Abdullah is 5'4" (but he wears 6" lifts).

Prince Abdullah and President Bush both enjoy watching "The Beverly Hillbillies" original television show, and get a big laugh out of singing along with the opening song.

While touring the ranch with the First Lady, the Crown Prince commented that he had stepped in a pile of cow chaddah for the first time.

During a casual break with the press corps, Prince Abdullah lamented the absence of former Secretary of State Colin Powell. With fondness he said, "Despite our differences, Colin was one well-spoken ahbid. I liked the way he used to carry my bags."

Monday, April 25, 2005

Bush Talks Tough with Prince Abdullah

CRAWFORD, Texas (AP) - President Bush is seeking relief from record-high gas prices and support for Middle East peace as he opens his Texas ranch to Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, the world's largest oil producer.

Bush said he'll make clear Monday that it's not in Saudi Arabia's interests to keep oil prices high. "If they pinch the world economy too much, it'll affect their ability to sell crude oil in the long run," he said in a television interview last week.
Topics that have been
removed from the meeting agenda:

  • Finding Osama Bin Laden
  • Regime change in Riyadh
  • Human rights violations (both sides)
  • Democracy in Saudi Arabia
  • Women's Rights in Saudi Arabia
  • Religious Freedom in Saudi Arabia
  • Pork Farm Subsidies and Imports

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Terry Schiavo dead, Aiwa stops ad campaign

Thad Postule, spokesperson for the electronics company Aiwa, today announced that the company would be ceasing it's ad campaign which featured Terry Schiavo, the woman who became the centerpiece of a long and public battle over the right to die.

Aiwa had been using the signature phrase uttered by Terry Schiavo which was echoed by her parents as her wish to live, which they believed was her saying "I want to live."

However, the real phrase she uttered was "Ahhhhh wahhhhh." This was clearly her soul clinging on to the only thing it left dear to her life, the fine electronics of Aiwa.

"Now that she has passed, we feel an obligation to move on to the living... but don't forget... the almost dead know who makes the best inexpensive consumer electronics!"

"Ahhhhh wahhhhh! Indeed!"

Friday, April 15, 2005

Iraq's Wounds Aren't Healing

Like a zealot with stigmata, Iraq keeps bleeding. Despite the January elections, Iraq is still plagued with insurgent attacks.

Yesterday on NPR, a reporter was describing a dual car bombing and said that the daily deaths by insurgent attacks dropped dramatically since January from triple digit casualties to double digits PER DAY. Double digits per day? Ten or more people per day are being killed by insurgents? Are those numbers correct?

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Rummy Gives Iraq Advice

This week in Iraq, Donald Rumsfeld, the proverbial boil on America's ass, visited the new interim leaders in Iraq and gave them some powerful advice with a terse warning to avoid

With jaw dropped in astonishment, interim Iraqi President Jalal Talibani said, "That's exactly the reason we want you out of our country."

Monday, April 11, 2005

115 Cardinals in Rome and They Let THIS Guy give Mass?

VATICAN CITY (AP) - Cardinal Bernard Law celebrated Mass in mourning for Pope John Paul II in St. Peter's Basilica on Monday, ignoring protests from victims that his handling of the sex abuse scandal in the U.S. Catholic Church should disqualify him from the honor.

Law resigned as archbishop of Boston in December 2002 after unsealed court records revealed he had moved predatory clergy among parishes without alerting parents that their children were at risk. More than 550 people have filed abuse claims in Boston in recent years, and the archdiocese has paid more than $85 million in settlements.

Bolton Pledges to Help Strengthen U.N.

John R. Bolton, a blunt diplomat whose nomination as U.S. ambassador to the U.N. is opposed by most Democrats and some in the foreign policy establishment, pledged Monday to help strengthen an institution that has occasionally "gone off track."

His plan for strengthening the U.N. and keeping the organization on track? By decapitating his evil twin brother, Michael Bolton, drinking his blood, and wearing his entrails like a scarf, he announced.

"It's the perfect plan," Bolton said on the first day of his confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, "it's fool proof, since I know how to get past Michael's intricate tapestry of auditory protective charms and talismans."

Hefting the still-bloody head of his freshly murdered sibling from a brown paper grocery bag, Bolton confidently announced, "I've done my part, Senators. Now it's your turn to confirm my nomination."

The committee's top Democrat, Sen. Joseph Biden of Delaware, expressed his "grave concern" about Bolton's nomination, citing doubts about his "diplomatic temperament."

"In my judgment," Biden said, "your judgment about how to deal with the emerging threats have not been particularly useful."

Sen. George Allen, R-Va., however, called Bolton "the absolute perfect person for the job," and added, "plus I really hate your brother's music."

Friday, April 08, 2005

Pope Burial Hides Ebola and Bird Flu

The God of Thunder reminds us that while we're sitting on our butts watching news about the Pope, Michael Jackson, and Tom Delay, there are more important events occuring around the globe that somebody doesn't want us to know about.

Ebola Marburg Outbreak

LUANDA, March 29 (Reuters) - Angola's outbreak of deadly Marburg fever claimed three more lives at the weekend bringing the death toll to 117, but the government said on Tuesday the situation was under control and there was no need for panic.

So far 124 cases have been recorded, underscoring the lethal nature of Marburg, a virulent viral infection in the Ebola family for which there is no specific cure and from which few recover.

Avian Flu Outbreak in North Korea

SEOUL, April 8 (Reuters) - North Korea sought South Korea's help on Friday in combating a bird flu outbreak that has forced it to cull more than 210,000 chickens at two poultry farms in its capital, a South Korean ministry official said.

North Korea asked for equipment and medicine. It expressed gratitude for the South's offer of help, which was made shortly after Pyongyang announced the outbreak on March 27, the Unification Ministry said.

Brain Failure Outbreak at News Media HQs and Congress
Washington, DC (Phelps) - A curious epidemic is sweeping the upper offices of news media headquarters and the hallowed halls of national government: their brains are disappearing. While the news media is filling broadcast hours with the latest reports about the Pope being laid to rest and the US Congress is more interested in steroid use in pro baseball, other important news stories are falling by the wayside.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Colin Powell Turns 68 Today!

Me: Happy Birthday, Colin!

You: Who?

Me: Colin Powell. You might remember him as the plucky kid from the South Bronx who survived New York City public schools in the 1940's and 50's, went to college there and received a bachelor's degree in geology.

You: I got nothin', dude.

Me: Maybe you less notably remember him as the U.S. Secretary of State who in 2003 failed miserably to convince all of the world powers except Great Britain that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and was on the verge of using them. After that, he fell out of favor with the current White House administration, became politically impotent, slipped into relative obscurity, and can now be seen less often as a guest on news talk shows than Madeleine Albright or Emanuel Lewis.

You: Oh... him. Yeah, happy birthday Conrad.

Me: Colin.

You: Whatever.

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