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        The Clinton Death Conspiracy / Breast Cancer Research Stamps

Howdy, y'all!  Today's TOURBUS post comes to you from 32,000 feet
above the state of Missouri (yes, I am really writing this in an
airplane -- I'm flying back to Alabama after spending the last couple
of days speaking to the folks at Missouri Western State College).  I
guess I should warn you that today's post will be both short and full
of typos.  The reason?  Turbulence!  (a.k.a. "air squirrels!").  To
make up for the brevity of today's post, be looking for a longer
TOURBUS post from me on Saturday morning.  :)

Make sure to stop by today's sponsors and thank them for keeping our
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On with the show ...

The Clinton Death Conspiracy

The latest hoax floating around the Net asks you "how would you like
to be Bill Clinton's friend" and gives you a HUGE list of Clinton
associates who have mysteriously died over the past six years.  The
intent of this hoax is to convince you that the number of "Friends of
Bill" who have recently died is significant enough to warrant a
massive investigation.

The problem is, it isn't.  According to the United States Centers for
Disease Control, "[t]he provisional death rate for the 12 months
ending with November 1997 was 861.0 per 100,000 population."
[, page 4, second
paragraph].  In other words, in the year leading up to November 1997,
8.61 out of every 1,000 US citizens died.  Between January 1993 and
December 1997, the provisional death rate has fluctuated between 8.5
and 8.9 deaths per 1,000 population [ibid., page 5, first figure].

Let's be kind and pretend that the provisional death rate during the
last six years of the Clinton presidency has actually been a constant
eight deaths for every 1,000 people.  Let's also pretend that the
entire executive branch of the United States government, including its
"unofficial" members (a.k.a. the "friends of Bill"), is limited to
only 1,000 people.  [This last assumption is, admittedly, silly.]
Using simple arithmetic, we can calculate that a 1,000 person
executive branch could expect to lose eight members a year.  Over six
years, the executive branch could expect to lose 48 people.

This is nothing out of the ordinary.  Statistics say that for every
1,000 US citizens, eight-ish will die each year.  Multiply eight-ish
by six years, and you get 48 deaths.

Want to guess how many "dead people" are listed in the "how would you
like to be Bill Clinton's friend" letter?  48.

What about the number of high-ranking officials who have died?  Folks,
if it shocks you that the President of the United States of America
associates with high-ranking officials, please do us all a favor and
remove yourself from the gene pool.  Besides, ask yourself two

     1. If there really is a conspiracy to kill people "in the know,"
        why is Monica Lewinsky still alive; and

     2. Why isn't there a single mention of this "death conspiracy" in
        Ken Starr's report to congress?  Clearly, mentioning the mere
        possibility of this conspiracy would be enough to remove the
        president from office (something that the current Starr report
        is not guaranteed to accomplish).  Or is Ken Starr part of the
        conspiracy too?

48 people are dead.  Let us not tarnish their memories or add to the
grief of their loved ones by concocting a conspiracy where clearly
none exists.

The Breast Cancer Research Stamp

Another story floating around the Net right now says that the U.S.
Postal Service has issued a "Breast Cancer Research Stamp" and that

     [i]nstead of the normal $.32 for a stamp, this one costs $.40.
     The additional $.08 will go to breast cancer research.  If all
     stamps are sold, it will raise an additional $16,000,000 for this
     vital research.

It is my distinct pleasure to inform you that this story is absolutely
TRUE!  The Breast Cancer Research Stamp was the result of legislation
sponsored by Senators Dianne Feinstein (CA), Alfonse D^̉Amato (NY) and
Lauch Faircloth (NC) while the House legislation was sponsored by
Representative Vic Fazio (CA) and former Representative Susan Molinari
(NY).  The Breast Cancer Research Stamp legislation was signed into
law by President Clinton on August 13, 1997, and the stamps have been
available for sale at U.S. Post Offices for the past seven weeks.

200 million Breast Cancer Research Stamps have been printed.  In
effect, these are regular, First Class, 32 cent stamps.  The only
difference is that you pay 40 cents for them.  The eight cent
difference goes to breast cancer research programs at the National
Institutes of Health and the Department of Defense (yes, the DoD does
do cancer research).

To order the Breast Cancer Research Stamps,

     1. Visit your local U.S. Post Office
     2. In the U.S., call (800) STAMP24 or fax to (816) 545-1212
     3. Eventually, you should be able to purchase the stamps online
        (but it doesn't look like their online ordering system is up

That's it for now.  Be looking for another post from me this weekend.

Now, please return your seat and tray table to their upright, locked
position in preparation for landing.  :)


BAIL (noun).  A metallic instrument.
Usage: "Y'all come eat when you hear the dinner bail ring!"

 (Special thanks to Steve Short for today's wurd)

You can find *ALL* of the old Southern Words of the day  here.

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