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Funny Money: Summer of Discontent

A look back at all the corporate hilarity of the past three months.

Editor's Note: Welcome to "Funny Money," a feature written by New York-based comedian Jeff Kreisler. Lest there be any confusion, please note that this column is a work of satire and intended for entertainment purposes only. Enjoy the weekend.

I'm wrapping up my tour of duty here in Scotland, where I've found that the solution to the world's great financial problems is simple: more beer. Due to my research into the solution -- and because

this awesome Japanese game broke my arm -- this week's column is a look back at some of my favorite items from a summer of business that went up, down, and all around.


JUNE: Blue Man Attack!

I was in London over Memorial Day. Know how expensive the low dollar makes things in the U.K.? Right now, one British prime minister costs


failed American military expeditions. Crazy.


switched from




chips. On the battlefield of the Microprocessors War, a brave Intel ad exec commands: "Blue Man Group!


(Trumpets blaring).


will buy back more than a third of its outstanding shares but, in order to get the best price, it has to stop in Raleigh and change planes in Houston.


says its iPhone will be able to play YouTube clips, finally uniting cults of irrelevance into one grand waste of time. "Hey! I can watch cats playing piano while I wait in the unemployment/latte line!"

Interesting unreported tidbit: You can't use a stylus on the iPhone because it only responds to skin contact, and


because Apple is collecting our DNA to build an army of iPeople.

Preorder yours today!

Commerce Bancorp

announced that it will end controversial contracts with executives and their relatives. Instead, the company will just hand them canvas bags full of unmarked bills.


might sell its Jaguar and Land Rover divisions. "We're thinking about cutting back, saving costs, finding a profitable business models. In fact, starting next week, Ford dealers will sell only the iPhone."


revenue rose 20%, just as the entrails predicted.



Exxon Mobil

refused to comply with Venezuelan demands to cede control of operations. In response, President Hugo Chavez announced plans to nationalize the iPhone.


announced plans to stop advertising certain products to kids. Why? Froot Loops and Cocoa Crisps are "part of a healthy breakfast." All you've need to do is add some dairy, protein, fruit, grains, and, well, a healthy breakfast. And dental care. And liposuction. And heart surgery.


Jones Apparel Group

may sell Barneys to the Dubai government.

What?! This is an outrage! Start the Congressional hearings!

We can let those with terrorist ties control our high-end fashion! I suppose if they cut off our supply of seersucker we can always open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling for tweed.

China sentenced a medical drug regulator convicted of bribery to death. Geesh, China. We get it. You're serious about cracking down on corrupt regulators in light of the recent tainting scandals, but


? Couldn't you just have given him a government pension, the Medal of Freedom, and a lucrative private sector job in the industry he "regulated"? That would've been punishment enough.

Robert Zeollick was appointed to lead the World Bank. Problem: He's actually qualified.

What gives?

In workplace news, many employers have begun drug testing at work in order to reduce the growing amount of accidents, absences and home run kings.

The Supreme Court threw out an antitrust suit against 10 investment banks. In a concurring opinion, Chief Justice Roberts cited the common law doctrine of "Thanks for the stock picks."

July: Mackey is Lonely

Next up for Apple fanatics: the iKoolAid, available in Jonestown flavor.


purchased Postini for $625 million in cash.


TheStreet Recommends

Cash? Um, maybe you haven't noticed, "Google," but there's this little thing called "massive debt'" we're all using irresponsibly, hurtling society to the edge of oblivion. Get on board.


, having been rejected by


, extended its offer for another month.

"Come on, baby. Maybe you don't wanna go home with me now, but gimme another hour, it'll be last call, I'll be a couple beers more charming, maybe you'll see things differently."


Chicago Board of Trade

got approval to merge with the

Chicago Mercantile Exchange

. Inside info: Markets are merging, and companies are combining, in order to form giant robots to battle Voltron for the safety of the galaxy. Seriously. You can look it up.

Whole Foods'

John Mackey used an online alias to pump up the company's stock. In an ironic twist, Mackey was just hiding the fact that he's LonelyGirl15.

Conrad Black was found guilty last week. That's what happens when our borders aren't secure. Criminals coming here from Canada, taking jobs that regular Americans don't want... like thieving media baron.

Bear Stearns

claims several hedge funds are now completely worthless. Well, that's one way to avoid paying taxes on them.


moved forward with plans to sell Volvo. After all, Volvo is a safe, efficient car with steady sales. Ford doesn't have the expertise to handle that.

Procter & Gamble

is hoping to sell a water-purifying powder to capitalize on their fear-mongering media friends. "Tonight on EyeWitness News: Water! Is your family safe? Or are they drinking H-2-



agreed to a $1.3 billion buyout, putting control of the puffy popcorn-like clouds into private hands.


will test a plug-in hybrid like


. Wait, instead of using the courts or lawmakers to prevent progress, an auto company is actually trying to adapt? I don't get it.

August: Giant Leap for Porn


recalled nearly one million toys due to excessive levels of lead in paint. Poisoned toys: Eradicating innocence or forcing kids to build up a tolerance to lead that will allow them to fight supervillains in the comic book future?

For the first time, U.S. automakers did not lead U.S. auto sales. If I'm elected president, I will immediately invade Detroit and put in place a friendly government that will work for America, not against it.

Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia

reported wider losses, but then said that it could improve its numbers with just the simple tools for earnings manipulation you'd find lying around your home.


may have won an NSF contract to build the world's fastest supercomputer. One small step for IBM, one giant leap for porn.

Robert Nardelli was hired to run Chrysler just months after leaving

Home Depot

in disgrace. I guess they figure he knows how to do things poorly, and, since that's what they do too, it's a perfect fit.


profit exceeded expectations.

You gotta problem wid dat?

Dow Jones


News Corp.

did name members of a committee to assure that

The Wall Street Journal

retains editorial independence. The over-under on how long it lasts: One election season.

Lloyds TSB

agreed to pay out $12.5 million for its part in Moshe Leichner's Ponzi scheme. A Ponzi scheme, as we've covered before, is not the same as a Fonzi scheme, but is similar to a Chachi situation and Mr. C. scenario.

You're welcome.

The Sentinel fund was hit hard by withdrawal requests as the credit drama continues to unfold. I don't see these rippling events as a domino effect, but more like the different Russian grandmothers of a giant Babushka doll. In the center: A tiny little Alan Greenspan.

A graduate of Princeton, Virginia Law School, and the fictitious College of Asparagus Lovers, Jeff Kreisler ( is an accomplished comedian, writer, producer and person. He writes for Comedy Central's Indecision2008, won the Bill Hicks Spirit Award for Thought Provoking Comedy, is in the cast of "Shoot The Messenger," a new show from the creator of "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart," stars in the "Comedy Against Evil" tour, and is writing "Get Rich Cheating," a parody of corporate crime. Jeff performs at clubs and colleges all over the known galaxy and has been featured at the Edinburgh Fringe, Freedom Cinema, and San Francisco Comedy Festivals. He plays blues saxophone, speaks French and Russian, was a sports broadcaster, taught English in Russia, helped start a non-profit dedicated to at-risk youth, and played college football. After extended stops in cities like San Francisco, Boston, and D.C., Jeff now lives in New York City from whence he is available for birthdays, circumcisions and bachelorette parties.