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By Bob Harris

GIVEN THE FREQUENCY with which America's news organizations have recently abandoned the traditional standards of responsible reporting, there's no reason left to limit these commentaries to things that have actually happened. Hey, as long as we're just repeating anonymous allegations leaked for political gain, why not just eliminate the middleman and write whatever amuses us?

In that spirit, The Scoop proudly presents the first in an occasional series of Tomorrow's Headlines Today!

Washington: The Olympic champion U.S. women's hockey team is invited to the White House to pose for photographs with President Bill Clinton. On their way out, all 25 players and coaches are issued subpoenas from special prosecutor Kenneth Starr.

Capitol Hill: Software magnate Bill Gates tells Congress that Microsoft does not have a monopoly. Gates also warns legislators that if they continue to bother his friends and call him names, he'll just pick up his Internet and go home.

Also on Capitol Hill: The Congressional Budget Office predicts that the federal government will finish this year with a surprising $8 billion budget surplus. The extra money is the direct result of lower interest rates, an increase in tax revenues, and a sudden drop in gifts to White House interns.

The United Nations: Clinton again talks tough with Iraq, threatening Saddam Hussein with "extra-heavy-duty severest double-dare consequences, with home base called and no givebacks." Republicans deride this language as lacking any deterrent threat of credible noogies.

New York: AOL gossip columnist and online reporter Matt Drudge accepts a job with a major TV network, stating he was "seeking a position consistent with the Drudge Report's high standards of objectivity." Reportedly, his other job offer was work as an Olympic ice-dancing judge.

Also in New York: At a gala to honor Time magazine's 75th anniversary, Clinton invokes the legacy of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who is immediately subpoenaed by Kenneth Starr. In other toasts to important leaders from earlier parts of the century, Bill Gates salutes the Wright Brothers, Toni Morrison hails Dr. Martin Luther King, and Sen. Strom Thurmond pays tribute to himself.

Alexandria, Va.: In the wake of disclosures that the billion-dollar stealth bomber can be disabled by flying through a light rain, a new Government Accounting Office report states that the only thing in the entire Pentagon absolutely certain to survive a nuclear war is the paperwork.

Moscow: More troubles for the Mir spacecraft, after cosmonauts discover their emergency escape capsule is a 1974 AMC Gremlin and prone to flaming rear-end collisions.

Houston: The NASA Galileo space probe has discovered the presence of water on Europa, one of Jupiter's largest moons; scientists speculate that simple life forms may exist several hundred feet beneath Europa's surface. Those life forms will now receive subpoenas from the office of Kenneth Starr.

Atlanta: Human rights agencies report a 20 percent increase in militia activity nationwide. The rise is attributed to millennial paranoia, the circulation of false information over the Internet, and society's continued inability to stop performances by New Age music phenom Yanni.

Hollywood: Two New Zealand playwrights have filed a lawsuit claiming that the movie The Full Monty was plagiarized from their ideas. As the plaintiffs begin presenting their evidence, the judge tells them just to put on their clothes and go home.

Also in Hollywood: Titanic has now become the first film to gross over a billion dollars worldwide. In a related story, Paramount green-lights Speed 3, in which Sandra Bullock is forced to race the Edmund Fitzgerald through a snowstorm on Lake Erie. Joe Eszterhas (Burn Hollywood Burn) will write and direct, and plans are already under way to burn the negative and assign blame.

And finally, in Boston: Scientists have isolated the specific brain-wave patterns characteristic of dyslexia. Details of the study can be found in the latest issue of the prestigious journal New Jingled Dirndl of Cinnamon.

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From the March 12-18, 1998 issue of the Sonoma County Independent.

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