Headlines : 17th December, 2008

More indications that we are in a recession. Assassins are now using knives and tasers as weapons.

The scare in Paris. Acting on a tip-off by the terrorists themselves, French Police located a bundle of dynamite inside department store Printemps, and safely removed them. When reached for comment, Shivraj Patil just stared emptily into space.

The Indian government has introduced two Bills for setting up a National Investigating Agency (NIA) to probe terror cases across the country. Home Minister P.Chidambaram expressed his hope that the BJP and the LeT would extend their complete co-operation and make this move a success.

Meanwhile, Ratan Tata is planning to set up his own anti-terror mechanism to protect his people and assets. He accused the Mumbai police force of being reactive to adverse situations rather than anticipating them. Really? I guess we should be blaming the unfavorable alignment of planets for Singur then.

More on the Iraqi journalist Muntazer al-Zaidi, who’s in the news for throwing his shoes at Bush. He fired both his shoes at the President but missed his target from a very close range. Wow…who would have even guessed that the Bombay police had trained him?

Buts it’s not all bad. The shoe-thrower is now a hero in the Middle East. In fact, he’s signed a book deal. Tentative title – ‘Quantum of Shoelace’.

The crisis in Zimbabwe. Bush has condemned “President” Mugabe’s tyranny and wants him overthrown. Bush accusing another of tyranny? A classic case of Despot calling the kettle black. (Or African, if you prefer).

The Madoff fraud. A Ponzi scheme is an investment operation that sustains itself by paying older investors out of the money deposited by subsequent investors. Madoff’s response -‘Sure. But when the Government does it, why do you call it Social Security?’

Major banks across Europe – including HSBC, RBC, Bank Santander, Deutsche Bank– have reported that all their investments with Madoff’s firm had been wiped out. Gone. Poof! Makes you wish for the good old days when banks at least had those toxic assets on their balance sheets……

Even Goldman Sachs reported losses over $2 billion for the quarter. Nothing to do with Madoff though. Just plain incompetence and mismanagement.

Sarah Palin has topped Google’s 2008 chart of the most web searches. When asked if she had ever googled herself, Palin retorted –‘How dare you! I am a married woman with 5 kids!!’

As per Google, Katrina Kaif was the most searched for actress. The troubling part – most of the searches were traced to FEMA.

Batman, understandably, was the most searched for superhero. Followed closely by Barack Obama.

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