There he goes, headed west!
It wasn't televised live, as it might have been on an American cable news channel, but the two-hour police chase in southwestern England last Sunday afternoon had some of the same drama as one on a California freeway. It began when a vehicle reported as stolen was located traveling on a secondary road. Since the driver refused to stop, cruisers tailed him to the county line, then handed off the problem to the next jurisdiction. All the while, a police helicopter monitored the situation from the air. Finally, a slow-speed crash ended it all, and the culprit was arrested on foot. Oh, what had he swiped? A farm tractor.
Because of the unpopularity of the war in Iraq in certain quarters, a new survey has found that 17 percent of French consumers (and 13 percent each in Germany and Britain) say they're less likely to buy US-produced goods. Meanwhile, a separate poll in the US by Wirthlin Worldwide and Fleishman-Hillard International Communications, found 15 percent of the 1,000 adults surveyed had switched from French brands, and 10 percent avoided German wares. But would-be boycotters weren't always accurate as to their targets. Among the common misconceptions from the latter survey and the percentage of respondents who claimed them:
That Universal Pictures is an American-owned movie studio (It's a unit of France's Vivendi) 78%
That Yoplait yogurt (General Mills, US) is French 45
That Grey Poupon mustard (Kraft Foods, US) is French 64
That French's mustard (Reckitt Benckiser, Britain) is French 29
That Michelin (France) is a US maker of tires 43
That pharmaceuticals giant Bayer (German) is a US company 55
That Saab (formerly of Sweden, now a unit of General Motors) is a German automaker 42
That engineering giant Siemens (German) is American 31