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By Compiled from wire service reports by Robert Kilborn and Ross Atkin / April 22, 2005



You gave it to him anyway??

In Anchorage, Alaska, earlier this month, police arrived in time to prevent a motorist from leaving the scene of an accident . He had driven his car up over a sidewalk and rammed a building, denting its metal siding and cracking an inside wall. No injuries, but he was charged with operating under the influence of - apparently - medication. What the police were not in time to prevent, however, was the renewal of the fellow's driver's license. The building houses a branch office of the state Department of Motor Vehicles, and although a few concerned employees tried to intervene, he paid his $20 fee, picked up the new permit without difficulty, and walked out.

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Forbes 2000: red, white, blue, plus a lot of green

As one would expect of the world's superpower, the US is home to many of the world's leading companies. According to Forbes magazine, which compiles the Forbes 2000 - a ranking of the world's top 2,000 companies - the US claims 711 spots, while Japan is a distant second, with 326. In its overall evaluations - based on sales, profits, assets, and market value - Forbes rewards five of the top six slots to US corporate giants Citigroup, General Electric, American Interntional Group, Bank of America, and Exxon/ Mobil. The countries best represented among the Forbes 2000, and the number of companies operating under the national banner of each:

1. US 711
2. Japan 326
3. Britain 140
4. Canada 67
5. Germany 63
6. France 62
7. Italy 45
8. South Korea 41
9. Australia 38
10. Switzerland 37
11. Taiwan 35
12. The Netherlands 33
13. India (tie) Spain 30
15. Hong Kong (tie) Sweden 28
17. China 25
18. Bermuda (tie) Brazil 19
20. Mexico 18

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