S U C K

"a fish, a barrel, and a smoking gun"
for 3 June 1999. Updated every WEEKDAY.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
Hit & Run CLXXXI

 

[]

In The New York Times' latest

broadside about Web millionaires

["A Stock-Driven Rush to Riches

For Manhattan's Silicon Alley,"

31 May, page A1], one

on-the-record source stood out

loud and tall. "I don't want to

be lumped in with the hucksters

of the world, because we have

the real deal," Jeff Dachis,

co-founder of Razorfish.com,

told the paper of record. "I

feel completely and utterly

entitled to whatever success

comes our way. Not everybody's

good, not everybody has the

winning idea, not every idea

deserves to be funded or to be

public. I'm sorry, but there are

sheep and there are shepherds,

and I fancy myself to be the

latter."

 

Say what you want of Dachis'

way with reporters, at

least it's a break from the

usual mush-mouthed "Our

fortune's all on paper" or

"We just got lucky" form of

awe-shucksin' that accompanies

most Web war stories. We

caught up with Dachis to see if

he might elaborate on his

online law giving:

 

Well, first of all, as you
know, quotes get taken out of
context. Reporters use quotes
where they can in their
stories, either in context or
out of context, as [Times
reporter] Amy Harmon might do,
or as you might do in your story:

Still, your statement
about being entitled to
whatever success comes your
way was pretty strongly worded.

Let me put that back
into context. All of our
market cap is on paper. But my
partner and I were lucky
enough to sell off a small
piece of our company for cash.
So that's real revenue that's
in our pockets, and in that
sense we feel entitled to it.

Is that what you mean by the
"real deal"?

There is a difference between a
company that offers a real
service and has real revenues
and a company that is just a
concept and has never made a
dime of revenue.

Those are the hucksters you
mentioned. Who are some
examples?

You tell me who they are.
What are the companies that went
public without any revenues?

I guess there are a lot of them.

Exactly.

Razorfish has lost 40
percent of its market cap
since April 28 [the day after
the company went public]. Is
that a reflection of the
company's actual value?

We don't even think about the
stock price. But you know,
from where we were when we
IPOed, we're up over 100
percent. So you tell me.
You tell me.

What about this shepherd thing?

That's something I say around
the office. There are shepherds
who are passionate about what
they do, and there are people
who prefer to be like sheep
and follow the herd, lemming-like.

Do you feel protective of your flock?

Absolutely. We are always
looking out for our clients.

How can up-and-coming Web
entrepreneurs take up the
crook and become shepherds?

Be passionate about what you do.
The people who do that will
succeed. It's the sheep I
worry about, the lemmings out
there with My Left Asscheek.com.

Is there really a
My Left Asscheek.com?

No, I just made that up.*

* Editor's note:
My Left Asscheek.com
does in fact exist. When we
contacted Dachis about this
matter, he denied any affiliation
with the site and did not attempt
to claim intellectual property rights.

 

[]

Like New Coke or an Admiral

Piett fanclub, Hillary Rodham

Clinton's Senate campaign is one

of those fake groundswells

cooked up by idle minds. Who,

other than people paid

to generate flapdoodle about

this stuff, can regard another

six years of Clintons in the

news without horror, or pretend

that Rudy Giuliani won't wipe

the floor with the First Lady in

what The New York Times

magazine calls "a street fight

with a nasty opponent"? Still,

the Hil on the Hill campaign has

generated some interesting

online pissing contests, mingled

with the shrine sites.

HillaryNo.com, set up by

"Friends of Rudolph Giuliani,"

offers a battery of familiar

anti-Clinton complaints, but

since the coy mayor has not yet

announced his candidacy, the

pitch for a campaign

contribution is couched as an

opportunity to "send your

message loud and clear - Hillary

No!" Which presents the

possibility that Rudy might

avoid joining the race altogether

and merely position himself as the

default "No" vote in a one-party

election. Meanwhile, William J.

Dixon's Hillary Yes! site,

despite its Sandburgesque title,

is a panicky jeremiad against

the Clinton campaign. Like many

a self-employed "humorist,"

Dixon uses words to mean the

opposite of what they say. The

only sticking point is that much

of his site's text is simply

copied and pasted from

Giuliani's, so there truly are

multiple layers of irony. Like

Hillary No!, Hillary Yes! is also

marred by its proprietor's

shameless self-promotion. In

this case, Dixon's résumé is

centrally located and features

such career highlights as

"Security Officer and Help Desk

Staffer, University of

Wisconsin-Madison General

Library System July,

1992-August, 1997."

 

[]

The emergence of Marilyn Manson

as a socially conscious

essayist puts us in mind of

other social critics whose

writings we've labored through.

Frankly, though, we're having a

hard time keeping the various

thinkers straight. Please help

out by identifying which of the

following quotations are echt

Marilyn, from the musical

antichrist's Rolling Stone essay

on the Littleton shootings.

(Other citations are from Allan

Bloom's The Closing of the

American Mind, William Bennett's

The Death of Outrage, a

Jon Katz column, Arthur

Schopenhauer's On Pessimism,

and a hand-scrawled letter

by homicidal has-been

Charles Manson).

1. Rather than teaching a child
what is moral and immoral, right
and wrong, we first and foremost
can establish what the laws that
govern us are.

2. Since values are not rational
and not grounded in the natures
of those subject to them, they
must be imposed.

3. [The artists'] unconscious
is full of monsters and dreams.

4. Man's greatest fear is chaos.

5. It is atrocious that two
silly, passionate boys should be
wounded, maimed or even killed,
just because they've had words.

6. [T]he search for the roots of
violence go (sic) beyond the
shallow institutions of the press.

7. It was unthinkable that these
kids did not have a simple
black-and-white reason for
their actions.

8. Times have not become more
violent. They have just become
more televised.

9. The central idea of Christianity
is that suffering — the Cross —
is the real goal of life.

10. Unfortunately, for
all of their inspiring morality,
nowhere in the Gospels is
intelligence praised as a virtue.

11. This is moral bankruptcy,
and it is damaging our country,
its standards, and our self-respect.

12. Man, like the art for
understanding what you know you
are thinking to say with your
big brains in reverse — Strikes are
back to calling more balls your way.

13. It is no wonder that kids
are growing up more cynical.

Answers:

1. Manson (Marilyn)

2. Bloom

3. Bloom

4. Manson (Marilyn)

5. Schopenhauer

6. Katz

7. Manson (Marilyn)

8. Manson (Marilyn)

9. Schopenhauer

10. Manson (Marilyn)

11. Bennett

12. Manson (Charles)

13. Manson (Marilyn)

 

[]

Back in the 1970s, apocalyptic

thinkers and pre-adolescents

already overstimulated by

shark-attack lore, turned their

attentions to the inescapable

scourge of killer bees.

According to the best

reality-based TV science

available, the Africanized

Hymenoptera were due to arrive,

and wipe out the US population,

by 1979. Movies heightened the

suspense, though in the end, the

insects were usually dispatched

with nukes or napalm, or, in one

clever tele-movie, by freezing

them on the 50-yard line of the

New Orleans Superdome. Though

they have been consistently

tardy, it appears the killers

may finally be colonizing the

United States with a fervor that

would do Monsanto tomatoes

proud. One hive attacked a

neighborhood in San Antonio,

Texas, Sunday, and several hives

were spotted in Florida last

month (the bandito bees have

apparently made a home in Texas

since 1990). More seriously, an

angry swarm attacked a group of

schoolchildren in Mexico

Tuesday. But now that they've

come to stay, the killer bees

appear to be somewhat less

deadly than their homicidally

insane movie namesakes. None of

the Mexican schoolchildren were

seriously injured, while in San

Antonio, the bees barely

managed to kill three dogs.

Learn all about the killer bees

and their overinflated reps at a

special Texas A&M tutorial, which

claims the greatest threat is posed

to beekeepers and cantaloupes.

 
courtesy of the Sucksters
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 





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