"We reverse the judgment of the Supreme Court of Florida ordering a recount to proceed" -- from the U.S. Supreme Court's majority decisionReturn to top
Hit 'em Up for a Bigger Raise, Alan
Alan Greenspan is getting a raise. Yet while an 11% hike, to $157,000, sounds good, his salary is paltry compared with heads of the 12 regional Feds and other central bankers around the world.
Many of his counterparts make double: Eddie George of the Bank of England gets $345,000; Wim Duisenberg of the European Central Bank, $340,000; Masaru Hayami, Bank of Japan, $345,000. Even Hong Kong, with an economy 2% the size of the U.S. economy, pays its Financial Secretary $315,000.
Because Congress sets his salary, it's reluctant to pay big bucks. Regional Fed banks aren't government agencies, so can pay more. After 13 years of presiding over a $10 trillion economy, it's ironic. "Greenspan's policies have created so much wealth for so many, yet he only gets a small slice," says Carl Tannenbaum of LaSalle Bank/ABN Amro. "[But] if we gave him his market value, could we afford it?"By Laura Cohn; Edited by Sheridan T. PrassoReturn to top
Have Pink Slip, Will Party
'Tis the season to be merry--unless you're a casualty of the dot-com reality check this year. But that's not deterring the nearly 2,000 laid-off dot-commers in New York's Silicon Alley.
They're throwing "pink slip" parties. They gather at a hip spot in Manhattan, Rebar, on the last Wednesday of the month to swap career advice, commiserate--and mingle with recruiters, who must bring three jobs to be let in. "People like to trade horror stories. It makes them feel a little better," says Allison Hemming, 32, who began the parties in July after getting her own pink slip.
The cocktail banter tells it all: "I'll never work for a 29-year-old again," seethes Mark Choey, 30, whose travel site, gecko.com, folded in August. Others grumble that top execs left with hefty severance packages while worker bees got nothing. Another lesson? "Going public is not a business plan," says recruiter Alle Cole, 28. "Many companies simply didn't think beyond the IPO."
The idea is spreading as fast as a computer virus. More than 7,000 dot-commers have been laid off nationwide, according to outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas. So Hemming is helping launch similar soirees in Seattle, Las Vegas, and San Francisco. "It's almost a badge of honor these days," she says. New York's next co-misery mingle will be on Dec. 20. There's a prize for the worst tale of woe: free job-training services.By Marcia Stepanek; Edited by Sheridan T. PrassoReturn to top
A Sweatshop Called the WTO
It regulates trade all over the world. It's a lightning rod for antiglobalization. But the World Trade Organization in Geneva has only 534 employees--a mere fraction of the 9,000 at U.N. headquarters.
And they're about to get swamped: China is expected to join the WTO in 2001, and many fear the caseload of disputes it may prompt will overwhelm the WTO's staff. So the organization is asking its 140 member governments for more money. Director General Mike Moore wants an extra $3.7 million next year, up from his current $74 million budget. That would add 13 lawyers and economists-- still not enough to deal with China, which has a trillion-dollar economy and a weak legal system. Members were to ratify the increase Dec. 15. "We're this little organization that is considered a giant responsible for everything bad in the whole wide world," says WTO spokesman Keith Rockwell.
With 12 countries from Albania to Panama having signed on in the last few years, there's been far more to do. The WTO's predecessor, GATT, judged 300 cases in half a century of existence; in just six years, the WTO has heard 214. When China adds to the workload, employees may just join anti-WTO demonstrations themselves.By William Echikson; Edited by Sheridan T. PrassoReturn to top