The Week That Was 

Money on their minds

Money on their minds

Legislative leaders discussed various tax schemes to bail out the state government for another year. Among the options: Raising the sales tax by a quarter-cent, applying the current 6-percent state sales tax to home electric bills, or levying a new tax on motor vehicles. Lawmakers took a two-week recess to await more up-to-date tax revenue figures before returning to Nashville to agonize over what to do.

Life in the Ivory Tower

Vanderbilt’s new chancellor, E. Gordon Gee, denied that he quit the presidency of Brown University for more money. He told the Associated Press he left because Brown, with only 7,000 students, ”was a bit small.“ He said, ”I felt a little like an antelope in a telephone booth.“ Guess no one’s told Gee yet that Vanderbilt, with 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students, isn’t much bigger. Gee was paid about $300,000 at Brown, while Vanderbilt offered him an economic package—including a post for his wife, Constance, a professor—that comes close to $1 million a year.

Does he or doesn't he?

Al Gore’s hair is coal black, but when his father was about the same age, his hair was white. That led The Wall Street Journal to pop the hair-coloring question to Gore for an article on how he has buffed up for the presidential campaign. ”When my dad’s hair turned white, it happened just like that,“ Gore said, snapping his fingers. ”I remember it. It happened when I was young.“ Dipping his head for close examination, he added, ”Color my hair? No. In fact, you can see I’m getting gray.“


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