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1996 | 07
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Tie-In's Impossible Mission: Find Sponsor's Name on Screen
July 1, 1996

Imagine Burger King sponsoring a movie in which a lead character is told to choose any food in the world and asks for a Big Mac. Then you’ll understand why Apple computer users are miffed.

In May, Apple Computer launched a multimillion-dollar marketing tie-in with Tom Cruise’s "Mission: Impossible." It featured Mr. Cruise in its TV and print ads, created a web site for the movie and even cosponsored its premiere.

Apple executives say they are pleased with the public reaction to their "brand-energizing" campaign. But techno-savvy moviegoers are baffled by the short shrift given Apple in the film.

It’s true that Mr. …

Libertarian Party Makes Pitch On Internet to Generation X
July 5, 1996

Carlton Hobbs, a 20-year-old math major at the University of Texas at Arlington, was cruising the Internet last September when he came across the web site for the Libertarian Party (

Since then, he has spent more than $500 on books about Libertarianism. He cleared his summer to work on a 21-chapter book about Christianity and Libertarianism. He joined the party and planned to drive nearly 26 hours to attend its presidential nominating convention that began July 4 in Washington.

"I’ve never met another Libertarian in my life," says Mr. Hobbs. "This convention will be the first time."

Young Mr. Hobbs is exactly …

ValuJet's Future Is Unclear, But Its Jets Are All Too Visible
July 11, 1996

The gates are empty, the passengers are gone, but ValuJet Airlines has yet another problem: parking its 51 planes.

The Federal Aviation Administration forced the discount airline to cease operations indefinitely June 17. But early this week, about half of ValuJet’s fleet was still parked at airports in Atlanta and Washington, blocking gates and costing ValuJet money. At Atlanta’s Hartsfield International, one out of every eight domestic gates was filled with parked ValuJet planes, increasing congestion even as Atlanta prepares for Olympic-size traffic.

Three more jets were parked at Washington Dulles International. The rest have been sent to maintenance facilities in Lake …

Abortion Pill May Join List Of New Drug-Based Options
July 22, 1996

RU-486, the abortion pill recommended for approval by a regulatory panel, isn’t the only new abortion option for American women. Two other pharmaceutical methods for ending or preventing pregnancy may soon come into wider use — in large part because they involve drugs already on the market for other purposes.

The abortion pill cleared a major hurdle on Friday when an advisory panel recommended that the Food and Drug Administration approve the product. The FDA could approve RU-486, also known as mifepristone, for use in the U.S. by early fall.

Three weeks ago, the same FDA advisory panel ruled that certain combinations …

Durable-Goods Orders Slipped In June; Jobless Claims Eased
July 26, 1996

WASHINGTON — New orders for durable goods fell 0.8% in June, the Commerce Department said, signaling that the economy’s strength isn’t unbridled.

June’s decline partially unraveled the huge 4.2% jump in May orders. That gain was just one piece of economic data in the robustly healthy second quarter that caused financial markets to wonder if the economy was in danger of overheating.

But June’s report helped temper that fear a bit. Treasurys ended modestly higher Thursday, with the bellwether 30-year bond rising nearly 3/8 to yield 7.01%.

More than half of the June decline in orders for durable goods, or big-ticket items such …