Friday, September 12, 1997

Quotes of the day

Jesse Helms, the king of ideological extortion, says "I do not yield to ideological extortion."

Boris Yeltsin says that more than 1/3 of the vodka sold in Russia is unfit for human consumption. I believe this counts as the straight line of the year.

Chinese President Jiang Zemin says that mass unemployment is a fair price for privatization. Evidently jobs-for-life is over, says Mr. Jiang, who turned 143 this week.

Here's the perfect set-up for a joke or a letter to Penthouse or something: one of a pair of twin MPs in the British Parliament, Angela Eagle, a junior environment minister, comes out as a lesbian.

Speaking of ideological extortion, Jesse Helms wrote a bit of the Foreign Relations funding bill that gives first crack at frozen Iraqi funds, not to Gulf War vets hurt by chemical weapons, or the Commodity Credit Corps, which lost $2.5 billion in loan guarantees, but private corporations, notably 7 tobacco companies. (This story, by the way, was broken by USA Today a couple of days ago and hasn't made it into either the Post or the NY Times yet).

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