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INSIDE THE SYSTEM
Guard that groundhog

January 25, 2002 | Page 4

EVEN LITTLE fuzzy animals can be the targets of terrorists.

A team of state police, bomb-sniffing dogs and National Guard troops are going to the annual Groundhog Day celebration in Punxsutawney, Pa., to guard "Punxsutawney Phil," the furry rodent who makes his annual weather prediction.

"We just never know what may pop up in these times, so we are getting prepared," said police spokesperson Jamie Levier. "There was only one year we did not have the event," said Bill Cooper, president of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club, "and that was in 1942, because we did not want to give our World War II enemies any favorable weather forecasts."

"Everything has changed in America, but Groundhog Day is one way of showing the world we are getting back to normal," he added. "Normal," apparently, involves bomb-sniffing dogs and National Guard troops armed with guns deployed in Punxsutawney.

--Reuters, January 16, 2002

What upset Giorgio Armani?

POOR GIORGIO Armani. The Italian fashion designer announced last week that he's "fed up" with luxury. "Luxury disgusts me," he told reporters after showing his latest men's fashion collection.

The collection is inspired by the "working-class" look of miners and soldiers. "I want to pay homage to the workers, to the dignity of the workers with their simplicity and straightforwardness," Armani told reporters backstage as he showed off outfits with flat caps, military boots and donkey jackets.

He pointed out that a pair of jeans from his discount label sells for the "bargain" price of just $88. Of course, several of the suits from his "worker-inspired" line of clothing cost more than $4,000.

--Reuters, January 17, 2002

Heard it through the grapevine

"BUSH'S CHOKING Episode Shows Chewing Is Important"
--Headline from a Reuters news story after President Bush choked on a pretzel

"OUR PERFORMANCE has never been stronger; our business model has never been more robust…We have the finest organization in American business today."
--Enron CEO Kenneth Lay in an August 14, 2001, e-mail to Enron employees

"I HAVE heard one manager say, 'I know it would be devastating to all of us, but I wish we would get caught. We're such a crooked company.'"
--Letter from Enron Vice President Sherron Watkins to CEO Kenneth Lay in August 2001

"TO PROTECT our freedoms, it seems we're going to have to relinquish some of our freedoms for a short period of time."
--Once-great rocker Neil Young, on his support for the USA PATRIOT Act

"THE DANGER is not just from terrorism. There are people in power in this country who will move to take advantage of this crisis."
--Response from Neil Young's former musical partner David Crosby

"IF WE go to war, jolly good!"
--Indian Army chief Gen. Sunderajan Padmanabhan on his preparations for a large-scale conventional war with Pakistan

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