Brief asides


POSTED: Monday, July 06, 2009


Time to pay the piper

April 15 is a few months past, but taxes (like death) are still around.

For some, the bills are large ... and unpaid.

The state recently posted to the Internet the names of its worst tax-offending individuals and companies, in an effort to get them to pony up the delinquent moolah.

With the state budget in flames, any money can help. Hopefully the checks will be in the mail soon.



Dial 'T' for ticket

Hands-free chatting is one thing. But how about hands-free dialing? Motorists seem to be adjusting to the new cell phone law, which outlaws holding most electronic devices while driving. Headsets make it easy—and legal—to answer the phone on the road. But placing a call is trickier.

Since the point of the law is to get multitasking motorists to refocus on the road, beware the dangerous distraction of trying to dial without picking up the device.



At least there's some spare change left

Normally, no one likes to see a 67-year-old mother of two abruptly kicked out of her home. But when the woman is Ruth Madoff and the home is a $7 million Manhattan penthouse involved in ill-gotten gains, well, one can almost hear the cheers.

Ruth Madoff's husband Bernard is serving a 150-year prison sentence for bilking billions of dollars from investors, many of whom lost life savings. He contends his family knew nothing of his fraud. O-K.

At any rate, in addition to the penthouse, Ruth Madoff has given up her claim to more than $80 million in assets, including property in Palm Beach, Fla., boats and other vehicles, says the Wall Street Journal. Per an agreement with federal prosecutors, she gets to keep a mere $2.5 million in cash.