Times Are Tough All Over

Claus Enterprises, Inc.
One North Pole
Arctic Circle, Earth 00000
Phone 000-12-25-1995

For Release Immediately – Claus Enterprises News Release

Claus Enterprises Announces Downsizing

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North Pole, December 26, 2003: Corporate CEO, S. Claus of Claus Enterprises announced today a downsizing and new productivity enhancement plan for the entire range of its corporate divisions. In keeping with this dramatic reorganization of the world’s oldest Yuletide enterprise, both Donner and Blitzen have elected to take the early reindeer retirement package which immediately raised concern as to whether or not they would be replaced and what other restructuring is contemplated by management.

Downsizing is appropriate given that Claus Enterprises no longer dominates the season’s gift distribution market with Wal-Mart, Home Shopping channels and mail order catalogues sharply diminishing Claus’ market share. CEO Claus said they could not sit idly by and permit further erosion of profits. Besides which, the reindeer downsizing is possible through purchase of a high tech Japanese sled for the CEO’ s annual trip coupled with increased productivity from Dasher and Dancer who have just earned MBA’s at the Harvard Business School. It was also noted that downsizing reindeer would cut airborne environmental emissions that have brought complaints in the past from the Sierra Club.

CEO Claus added, “I am pleased to inform you that Rudolph’s role will not be disturbed since tradition still is important with us. Furthermore, I want state in the strongest terms possible that the earlier leak from Rudolph’s nose was from cold air and not substance abuse. Beyond which ,I refute Rush Limbaugh’s charges that Rudolph is a “lush who was into the sauce, never pulled his share of the load, and an example of the total collapse of the liberal’s welfare system” We can only assume this unfortunate comment was made by Rush in the context of the stress he is enduring with his own drug problem and having to endure all this season kindness and goodwill.

In addition, CEO Claus announced immediate restructuring of Claus Enterprises’ wholly owned subsidiary, THE TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS. First, Mr. Claus reassured all that the partridge will be retained, but the pear tree – which never turned out to be the cash crop it was originally forecasted to be – will be replaced by a plastic replica providing considerable savings in maintenance and less adverse environment impact.

However, the two turtle doves are a redundancy that is simply not cost effective in addition to which their romantic activities during working hours were a distraction to others and hurt productivity. Therefore, the two turtle doves will be dispensed with immediately. The three French hens, however, will be retained because everybody loves things French in spite of their current anti-America government. The four calling birds have been replaced by automated voice mail system with bird call waiting. We are currently analyzing who the birds have been calling, how often and for how long.

In spite of a price increase , the five golden rings investment is being scrutinized by the Executive Committee to see if a portfolio based on one commodity alone might have negative implications as compared with one having a diversification of precious metals, commodities and T- bills.

The six geese-a-laying is clearly a luxury the enterprise can no longer afford and the production of one egg per goose per day is an egregious example of a drop in productivity. Therefore three geese will be let go and a new selection procedure implemented to insure management that every goose it gets from here on will be a good one. A similar situation prevails with the seven swans -a-swimming which are purely decorative and an icon from a more lavish time. They will be replaced with mechanical swans and, as part of the company’s humane outplacement program, the original swans will be trained to sing since swan songs are in great demand in American politics and corporations.

As everyone knows, the concept of eight-maids-a-milking is already under close scrutiny by the EEOC and we are currently seeking a better male/female balance and there is some thought that we might be guided by the experience of HOOTERS in this connection. The more militant maids-a-milking, in any case, regard the work as lacking a future and are exploring possibilities in other career fields with better upward mobility such as a-mending or a-welding or a-teaching.

The nine ladies dancing has always struck management as an odd number, but out of loyalty to these long-time employees will simply reduce the number by attrition and as the ladies are no longer able to do the steps, they will be retired without replacement. Likewise, the ten lords-a-leaping is not cost-effective when one considers the international air travel costs involved and the problems of getting ten lords-a-leaping through airport security. So, our Personnel Committee will replace the eight lords with eight out of work Congressmen of which there seems to be a surplus available at reasonable rates.

As for the eleven pipers piping and twelve drummers drumming, it is clear that the band has gotten bigger than corporate needs require and we have substituted a harpist who also supplies her own uniform. Beyond on that, of course, the concept of delivering each of these units on separate days is most wasteful and we have arranged to have them drop shipped all at one time in one day.

As for the lawsuit filed by the American Trial Lawyers’ Association seeking an expansion of our traditional program to include 13 lawyers-a-suing, we are awaiting the outcome of our appeal which we hope will received favorable consideration by the appellate court in spite of the jurists interest in having 14-appellate-judges-appealing.

Finally, let us say that we hope these productivity oriented moves will enhance the profit picture for S. Claus, Inc., but we remain aware that future economies and downsizing may have to be considered particularly in the Snow White Division to ascertain, for example, if seven is the most cost-efficient number of dwarfs. More about that later.

Contact George Mair at GMair8001@aol.com
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One Response

  1. McGehee December 22, 2003