Weekly Review — May 1, 2001, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

President George W. Bush said that the United States would do “whatever it took” to defend Taiwan if it were attacked by China. Missouri’s House of Representatives passed a bill making it a crime for a politician to lie in a campaign advertisement. Al Gore, angry that Bill Clinton was selected to deliver the commencement address at Columbia University, tried to organize a petition drive among his students there to protest the decision. President Bush was apparently trying to kill the government’s lawsuit against the tobacco industry by underfunding the Justice Department’s tobacco litigation team. Former senator Bob Kerry admitted that in 1969 he led a Navy Seals commando unit that slaughtered at least 13 unarmed women and children. Timothy McVeigh said that originally he had wanted to assassinate Attorney General Janet Reno but then decided to blow up the federal building in Oklahoma City instead. The Pope asked President Bush to show mercy for McVeigh; Vice President Dick Cheney said no way. The House of Representatives approved a bill criminalizing violence done to a fetus during the commission of a federal crime against a woman. Biologists persuaded embryonic stem cells from a mouse to generate insulin-producing organs; other scientists proved that therapeutic cloning, a procedure that also uses cells from an embryo, can produce tissue for any part of a mouse’s body. Jenna Bush, the 19-year-old daughter of the President, was given a ticket for the possession of alcohol in an Austin nightclub. A majority of Americans did not know the frequency with which the earth revolves around the sun.

The Food and Drug Administration warned people not to eat Autumn Monkshood, a poisonous plant that nurseries in Washington, Idaho, and British Columbia had been selling with a label reading “tasty in soup.” Three Britons were thought to be infected with foot-and-mouth disease, including a “slaughterman” who, according to a spokesman for Prime Minister Tony Blair, caught the disease while he “was moving a decomposing carcass of a cow, when that carcass exploded, and the fluid went into his mouth”; the slaughterman was later found to have a different virus. A couple was imprisoned in Vietnam for making a 10-year-old boy stitch up his own mouth with a needle and thread as punishment for stealing 200 dong, less than two cents. American policedogs were being outfitted with titanium teeth. After a construction worker at New York’s Kennedy International Airport complained about a new mural to the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, the artist voluntarily painted a loincloth over the genitals of Jesus, who originally was depicted naked and crucified. New York Citypolice commissioner Bernard B. Kerik decided not to punish the police officers who killed Amadou Diallo two years ago. The officers, who fired 41 shots at the unarmed black man but only hit him 19 times, will undergo retraining. New York’s supreme court ruled that gun makers could not be held responsible for shootings with guns that were bought and sold illegally; a Brooklyn jury had previously awarded $522,000 to a teenager, who was shot in the head, on the theory that the manufacturer was guilty of “negligent marketing.”Britain’s Ministry of Defense admitted that the British army had paid for a number of female soldiers to have breast augmentation surgery: “This is not done purely on cosmetic grounds, but as a last resort,” a spokesman said. An appellate court upheld a $1 million award for a woman whose plastic surgeon was supposed to remove some excess skin caused by weight loss but decided to enlarge her breasts as well, increasing them from 34B to 40DD.

Brigitte Bardot was extremely upset that the mayor of Bucharest, Romania, was killingstray dogs instead of putting them up for adoption as the aging actress had demanded; she accused the mayor of tyranny. Samuel Musabyimana, a former Anglican bishop in Rwanda, was charged with genocide by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Six Red Cross members were shot and hacked to death with machetes in Congo. African leaders at an AIDS conference in Nigeria called on all African nations to spend 15 percent of their national budgets on health programs, which would double or triple what most of the countries now spend. Celera Genomics announced that it would not publish its decoded mouse genome; the information will be available for a fee. Dennis Tito, a very rich man, finally managed to buy himself a visit to space. The Stroh Brewing Company settled a lawsuit with the estate of Crazy Horse, the Ogala Sioux warrior, over the marketing of Crazy Horse Malt Liquor, which was made in 7 breweries and distributed in 32 states; the company gave the Crazy Horse estate 32 blankets, 32 braids of sweet grass, 32 twists of tobacco, and 7 horses. South Korea announced that it would send 200,000 tons of fertilizer to the North. A British man admitted to pushing an elderly woman off an express train going 88 mph because she was bothering him with her endless chitchat. She died. A live-in caretaker in Everett, Washington, was charged with murder for paying her 13-year-old daughter and four other teenagers to kill her client’s son, 64, with baseball bats; her 11- and 7-year-old children helped her clean up the house afterwards; the 89-year-old client, a mute Alzheimer’s patient, was neglected and survived by eating newspapers. A golfer in New York hit two hole-in-ones in a single round. Scientists found that whales and dolphins are unable to see the color blue. There were suspicions that Miss France was really a man.

Share
Single Page

More from Roger D. Hodge:

From the October 2010 issue

Speak, Money

Get access to 165 years of
Harper’s for only $45.99

United States Canada

CATEGORIES

THE CURRENT ISSUE

August 2016

Don the Realtor

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Atlas Aggregated

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Origins of Speech

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Four in Verse

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

A Sigh and a Salute

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Four in Prose

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

view Table Content

FEATURED ON HARPERS.ORG

Post
Martin Amis on the rise of Trump, Tom Wolfe on the origins of speech, Art Spiegelman on Si Lewen, fiction by Diane Williams, and more

In Havana, the past year has been marked by a parade of bold-faced names from the north — John Kerry reopening the United States Embassy; Andrew Cuomo bringing a delegation of American business leaders; celebrities ranging from Joe Torre, traveling on behalf of Major League Baseball to oversee an exhibition game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Cuban national team, to Jimmy Buffett, said to be considering opening one of his Margaritaville restaurants there. All this culminated with a three-day trip in March by Barack Obama, the first American president to visit Cuba since Calvin Coolidge in 1928. But to those who know the city well, perhaps nothing said as much about the transformation of political relations between the United States and Cuba that began in December 2014 as a concert in the Tribuna Antiimperialista.

Illustration by Darrel Rees
Article
Don the Realtor·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

"If you have ever wondered what it’s like, being a young and avaricious teetotal German-American philistine on the make in Manhattan, then your curiosity will be quenched by The Art of the Deal."
Photograph (detail) © Polly Borland/Exclusive by Getty Images
Article
The Origins of Speech·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

"To Chomsky...every child’s language organ could use the 'deep structure,' 'universal grammar,' and 'language acquisition device' he was born with to express what he had to say, no matter whether it came out of his mouth in English or Urdu or Nagamese."
Illustration (detail) by Darrel Rees. Source photograph © Miroslav Dakov/Alamy Live News
Article
A Sigh and a Salute·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

"Si told me that various paintings had spoken to him, but he wished they had been hung closer together 'so they could talk to each other.' This observation planted a seed that would come to fruition years later in his mature work."
Artwork (detail) by Si Lewen
Article
El Bloqueo·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

"Amid the festivities and the flood of celebrities, it would be easy for Americans to miss that the central plank of the long-standing cold war against Cuba — the economic embargo — remains very much alive and well."
Photograph (detail) by Rose Marie Cromwell

Estimated temperature of Hell, according to two Spanish physicists ‘ interpretation of the Bible:

832°F

The ecosystems around Chernobyl, Ukraine, are now healthier than they were before the nuclear disaster, though radiation levels are still too high for human habitation.

A TSA agent in Seattle was arrested for taking up-skirt photos of women in the airport, a Maryland police officer was arrested for taking up-skirt photos of an off-duty colleague, and the Georgia Court of Appeals ruled that taking up-skirt photos is legal in the state.

Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!

HARPER’S FINEST

Mississippi Drift

By

Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'

Subscribe Today