Rich Galen

  • Whether or not Kim Jong Il, the goofball who runs North Korea, actually set off a nuclear device over the weekend, he certainly will sometime in the near future. However, assuming he has no way to mount that device on anything more advanced than a captured 1952 Jeep, we are a long way, both in time and distance, from being directly threatened by one of them.
  • While surfing for the CIA's World Factbook, I came across this from a press release:
  • "The Central Intelligence Agency placed 32nd in the top 50 of BusinessWeek Magazine's first 'Best Places to Launch a Career' ranking."

    I am keeping away from a string of fairly obvious jokes (like, "What was #31, the IRS?") because I am not absolutely clear on the current rules regarding CIA interrogation techniques.

    Actually, the IRS ranked #39; the State Department ranked #6.

  • The very, extremely, excellent and well-written World Factbook prepared by the wonderful folks at the CIA tells us that the Gross Domestic Product per person in South Korea is about $20,400 (compared to about $41,800 for the US). The GDP per capita in North Korea is - wait for it - $1,700.
  • So, what's swirling underneath Kim Jong Il's Cosmo-Kramer hairdo? Simple: He's going to hold the South Korean economy hostage to his nuclear capability. Pay up or light up.
  • Start building Kia cars in Pyongyang and Hyundai ships in Wansan or South Korea won't need streetlights to make Seoul glow at night.
  • Hey. I wonder if I'm too old to start a career at the CIA?
  • On the Secret Decoder Ring page today: Lots 'o Links: To the National Archives' Declaration of Independence site, a recipe for kimchi, a link to the quite extraordinary CIA World Factbook, to the BusinessWeek list of top 50 companies to start out in, and to a Map of Asia. Also a Mullfoto from George Washington's house and a thin Catchy Caption of the Day.

  • Rich Galen

    Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at