News In Brief


Hoop Dreams

Basketball star Michael Jordan will make $25 million next season, plus an estimated $40 million in endorsements. Here's a breakdown of his salary in layman's terms, courtesy of New York investment house Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette.

$618 while boiling a five-minute egg.

$5,600 while a customer spends about $20 for a meal in his Chicago restaurant.

$10,000 a minute in every game he plays (if he averages 30 minutes per game).

$18,550 while at the movies.

$52,000 in his sleep, assuming he sleeps seven hours per night.

More than twice as much as all the US presidents combined.

He will have to make this income for only 270 more years to have a net worth equivalent to that of Bill Gates.

- Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette


President Clinton planned to approve the classification of nicotine as an addictive drug. The approval aims to curb teenage smoking by allowing the Food and Drug Administration to regulate the advertising and availability of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco. Tobacco and advertising industries have sued to halt the crackdown.

Demonstrators gathered outside the White House while Clinton signed new welfare legislation ending six decades of guaranteed cash assistance to the poor. He promised the legislation would "recreate the nation's social bargain with the poor" by compelling welfare recipients to go to work. Children are likely to be hardest hit by the new law, a new Census Bureau report indicates. One in 4 children in the US collected some form of welfare benefits in 1993 compared with 1 in 7 Americans of all ages, it said.

Chemical weapons were detected up to seven times in the first week of the Gulf war near staging areas in northern Saudi Arabia, where tens of thousands of US troops were housed, according to a US Defense Department study cited in The New York Times. The Defense Department said there is still no conclusive evidence that US soldiers were exposed to Iraqi chemical weapons. But the Pentagon was "further exploring the plausibility" that small amounts of chemical agents passed over US troops after US bombers destroyed Iraqi arms depots and factories.

The Supreme Court refused to order North Carolina congressional election districts redrawn in time for November elections. The court let stand a lower court ruling that said the campaigns were too far along to redraw the districts now. The court declared one district unconstitutional earlier this year, saying race was the predominant factor in drawing the boundary.

A blast occurred in the center fuel tank area of TWA Flight 800, but it's unclear whether that explosion or a second one downed the plane, the National Transportation Safety Board said. The condition of the seats over that area showed an explosion took place, and most of the victims still missing were seated where it occurred, it said. Also, the FAA was expected to announce as many as nine regulatory changes for the Boeing 737, one of the world's most widely used planes, in response to two unsolved crashes.

It was unclear whether Jack Kevorkian would face charges in the death of Louise Siebens after Michigan's Oakland County medical examiner ruled it a homicide. Siebens's condition would have prohibited her from administering the injection that led to her death, the medical examiner said. But Dr. Kevorkian's lawyer said she was able to control the lever that released the drug.

The average math score on the 1996 Scholastic Assessment Test rose two points and the verbal score one point to their highest levels in 25 years. Scores are improving partly because students are taking more honors courses, says the College Board president. Critics continue to claim the test is not a fair indicator of how students will do in their first year of college.

Government agencies must find an estimated $9 billion to $30 billion to fix a bug that will affect computers beginning in 2000, the Office of Management and Budget announced. In the 1960s and 1970s, computer programmers used two digits to represent the year instead of four. Most computers think "00" means 1900 or reject it as invalid. If left unfixed, checks dated 2000 couldn't be issued, and the problem could cost the government large sums.

The New York Board of Education unanimously voted to establish a girls-only school in Harlem for Grades 7 through 12. Two civil rights groups say they plan to file a federal civil-rights complaint against the school.


Russian security chief Alexander Lebed signed a deal with Chechen rebels aimed at ending three weeks of fighting, after a deadline for a Russian assault on the capital, Grozny, passed quietly. Also, President Yeltsin criticized Lebed's handling of the Chechen crisis - raising doubts that the truce will take place. He also planned to address the country on the five-year anniversary of the failed Soviet coup.

Israel imposed and then lifted a ban on Palestinian President Yasser Arafat's flying to the West Bank to meet with former Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres. No reason was given for the reversal of the decision, which came four hours after the ban was imposed. It was not clear if the meeting would still take place in the West Bank town of Ramallah.

China offered to renew talks with Taiwan, but said the island had spoiled the atmosphere for talks. China urged the island to abandon its bid to break out of diplomatic isolation. Also, Taiwan plans to build seven more missile bases with US help, Taiwanese television reported. China objects to Taiwan having military links with foreign countries.

In response to criticism from the US and its allies, India said its opposition to a global nuclear test ban treaty doesn't mean New Delhi intended to enter into an arms race with neighboring Pakistan and China.

Some 95 percent of Bosnian Serbs and two-thirds of Croats oppose a unified Bosnia, a new US Information Agency poll found. In contrast, Muslim support was a near-unanimous 97 percent. Also, implementation of the Dayton accord has been "hesitant, inconsistent, and insufficient," Bosnian President Izetbegovic said.

A German court in Hamburg sentenced American neo-Nazi Gary Lauck to four years in prison. Lauck, an admitted admirer of Adolf Hitler, was found guilty of inciting racial hatred and distributing propaganda of organizations that violate the German constitution.

North Korea seized on student unrest over reunification in South Korea and announced that two South Korean students in the communist nation had started an indefinite hunger strike. Earlier, South Korean authorities vowed to crack down on student pro-tests and track down the leaders.

Vietnam sentenced Le Hong Ha, a prominent dissident and academic, to two years in prison and imposed suspended sentences on two other dissidents, court sources said. The sources said the men were accused of divulging state secrets.

French riot police broke up a protest by supporters of illegal African immigrants in Paris. About 40 demonstrators occupied the ruling party's headquarters to protest the government's vow to deport about 300 Africans who have sought sanctuary in St. Bernard Church, including 10 in the 49th day of a hunger strike. The Interior Minister, who asked the highest administrative court to review immigration laws, said Paris would decide soon how to handle the standoff.

Lebanese Christian opposition candidates said they are appealing their defeat in the first round of parliamentary elections. The opposition is alleging intimidation and fraud by the pro-Syrian government.

Jordan released 200 of the 300 people arrested in last week's riots protesting a government decision to more than double bread prices.

Katmandu shut down in the wake of a general strike led by Nepal's opposition Communists. It was the first such protest since the center-right government came to power last year.


"Today, we are taking a historic chance to make welfare what it was meant to be: a second chance, not a way of life."

-- President Clinton at a White House ceremony after signing historic legislation to overhaul America's welfare system.

The world's most historic battleship - the retired USS Missouri - is getting a new home in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. "Mighty Mo," where Japan surrendered in World War II, has been docked in Bremerton, Wash., for almost three decades.

South African horticulturists have engineered a flower fit for President Nelson Mandela. They replaced the orange petals in the orange-and-blue strelitzia with yellow to create Mandela Golds. The strain now reflects the colors in South Africa's new flag, rather than the old apartheid flag. Profits will fund scholarships for blacks to study botany.

It's Russian chess champion Anatoly Karpov against the world. Karpov plans to participate in the first-ever open Internet chess game Monday. About 50,000 people from 80 countries are expected to participate. Each time Karpov moves, players will have 10 minutes to offer proposals for countermoves. A computer will then execute the most popular move.

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