Apple has more money than you. And your neighbor. And your Senator. And your Senator's rich aunt. Combined.
In a moment of corporate hubris exceeded only by General Motors' 1950's dream of becoming the Nation's id, Apple today eclipsed the cash holdings of the US Treasury, reporting $76B in cash in the bank compared to our own meager horde of $72B.
Even General Motors restricted their strutting to strange blendings of corporate identity with social well-being, to wit "What's good for General Motors . . .". Apple has blown right past that lame rhetoric by claiming that what's good for us is nowhere near good enough for them.
Steve Jobs Bites Back
Steve Jobs revealed the news in a carefully scripted press conference at Apple's Cupertino headquarters, to which he summoned President Obama and Vice President Biden as executives in the newly-formed United States of Applica, to be called Next Gen USA or NGUSA for short. The transaction is being called a merger of equals, but we all know Jobs better than that.
Jobs made the following pronouncements from his new dais, which resembles the throne occupied by King George III during the days that preceded the days of the failed start-up USA:
Jobs will be referred to as the Enlightened One and all of his utterances are to be documented and archived in personal digital assistants to be carried at all times by all people in the land.
In return for an equity stake of $30B, the Enlightened One will have a controlling interest in the firm thereby entitling him to personally manage even the most microscopic decisions.
Consumer markets will be strapped down and forced to swallow an increasing torrent of Apple gadgets whether they like it or not. The Enlightened One things they will like it very much, whether they know it or not.
The words Microsoft and Gates are to be stricken from the realm and their legacies left to whither in the warm breezes that blow past the river Styx.
Research will begin immediately on market-making research to shrink the average size of the human frame so that, as smaller and smaller Apple gadgets come to retail outlets, an eager market of small folk will be anxiously awaiting them in greater numbers. As the the set of supported gadgets gets too small for the currently sized human race to use, those of us left behind will be stripped of our gizmos and cast into electronic purgatory as we await death, the customary and very reasonable way to deal with a nettlesome legacy problem.
So let it be written. So let it be done.
The always-secretive Enlightened One also made some early announcements about the next wave of iGadgets, news that was met with more enthusiasm than the demise of the infant Republic:
The iKitty - The only corporate powerhouse that dares challenge the dominating. relentless, market-mauling, juggernaut of Apple is Hello Kitty. Hello Kitty is Luke Skywalker to Apple's Darth Vader. HK is cute. Apple started cute, morphed to cool, and now finds itself settled into a comfortable middle-aged combination of hot/hip. But both have customer bases that are fanatical. Of the two, HK has found more diverse ways to leverage the brand. There is actually a Hello Kitty toaster that will pit out two slices of perfected browned toast adorned with HK images. But the thing only sells for $20 and HK probably only gets $1. The Enlightened One designs, manufactures, markets, retails, and maintains all of his stuff and he doesn't share anything with anybody anytime.