Jayson Blair Witch Hunt
Mr. Blair Goes to Wall Street
(New York, NY) Former New York Times reporter Jayson Blair, has resigned amid a scandal of journalistic fraud at the newspaper. Mr. Blair voluntarily gave up his post when it was discovered that he had plagiarized an interview with an alien from Planet X that had allegedly kidnapped New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer. Mr. Spitzer denied that he was kidnapped but would not comment on his relationship with aliens.
Mr. Blair had written over six hundred stories for the New York Times since he joined as an intern in 1998. Further investigation by a panel of editors, reporters and several prominent smokers at the newspaper revealed that his deceit included thirty-six national stories ranging from an interview with Elvis Presley published this spring to a lead story on the New York Mets 2002 World Series victory, despite the fact that they were eliminated by Anaheim in the first round. "We all felt bad about that," said New York Times chairman and publisher Arthur Schmaltzburger, Jr. "I thought it was odd that he was able to tell such a dramatic story when no other paper seemed to be covering the Mets." The editors assumed it was just another scoop for the Times and never questioned the details of the story or why the photos were from a 1973 world series against Cincinatti.
When the Mets story was discovered, the newspaper was swift with justice. "I told him he either had to give me back the $40 I put into the baseball pool he organized or resign," said Schmaltzburger. The New York Times then ran a four page report on Blair's deception in the newspaper highlighting troubles elsewhere in Blair's life. "Two can play this game," Schmaltzburger said. "He should have just given me the money." The newspaper is also now questioning several of Blair's expense reports from the past three years, including the purchase of a Bradley Fighting Vehicle for $3.1 million from eBay. Mr. Blair insists this was for a story that he published but declined to provide further details.
Enter Morgan Stanley
Meanwhile, executives at Wall Street firm Morgan Stanley were looking for a way to add new talent to their organization following the departure of enterprise software analyst Charles Phillips, who recently joined Oracle Corporation as Vice President of Executive Discretion. Mr. Phillips will be reporting directly to Oracle CEO Larry Ellison and "keeping him out of trouble," according to sources close to the company.
"With Chuck's departure we had a hole in our roster," said Morgan Stanley spokesman Jeff Flack. "Most of our other analysts are in prison or facing subpeonas so we really needed to bring in some new talent," he said. "When I read how the Times called Blair 'immature, with a hungry ambition and an unsettling interest in gossip,' I knew we had the makings of a great analyst," Flack said. A key factor in hiring Blair was the desire to change how financial research is done in the firm. "He's got a proven track record of telling it like it is, or at least how we would like it to be," Flack said. Executives at the firm noted that Blair would not be encumbered by his lack of a experience in financial analysis. "I'm sure he can come up with an MBA if he needs one," Flack added.
In the latest news surrounding Jayson Blair, the former New York Times reporter has signed an exclusive contract with Doubledeal Books for a purported six figure advance on the rights to his forthcoming biography entitled "Roots." Mr. Blair said that he was following in the footsteps of some of his favorite writers. "Alex Haley, Steven Ambrose, Edmund Morris, they've all had tremendous influence on my work," he said. "More than I can say." Mr. Blair was optimistic on his schedule for delivery to the publisher. "I gotta watch a few more episodes, but I think I can get this done by the end of the month," he said. "I've always had a flair for fiction."
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