Dispatches > The Buzz
- The creators of Dolly the Sheep are calling it quits. Team members at Edinburgh's Roslin Institute said they are halting their research into genetically modifying pigs for human organ transplants in part out of fear that this could unleash deadly new viruses. California-based Geron Bio-Med, which owns exclusive rights to biotechnology developed at the institute, has also decided to cut funding.
- Flight delays and cancellations that have plagued United Airlines this summer have taken their toll on mail service. Widespread disruptions on domestic routes caused one- to two-day delays in mail service, according to a USPS spokesman. United canceled 13 percent of its flights during the first 10 days of August and made other adjustments. The Postal Service made changes as well that returned the schedule to near normal. No word on whether anyone noticed the difference.
- Sporting only his bushy beard and a backpack, a militant nudist was thrown out of a London courtroom after he appeared in court. Vincent Bethell, 28, has carried out more than 15 naked protests, including stripping outside Scotland Yard police headquarters and perching naked on top of a lamppost outside the Royal Courts of Justice for two hours. Judge Terence English ordered Mr. Bethell to get dressed and reappear on Sept. 4, "hopefully with your clothes on because the courts will not deal with you if you go through this nonsensical charade."
- Bryon (Low Tax) Looper decided to resolve his 1998 state Senate race against Tommy Burks "with a bullet instead of a ballot," a prosecutor charged as he opened Mr. Looper's murder trial. The Republican politician, who had legally changed his middle name to (Low Tax), allegedly murdered his opponent to help himself win an election he was sure to lose. Mr. Burks's widow won the seat.
- What happened to EgyptAir Flight 990? The National Transportation Safety Board released voluminous investigative documents, complete with chilling details of a pilot's struggle to save the doomed flight, but it did little to settle a lingering dispute over what caused the plane to crash, killing 217 last October off the coast of Nantucket, Mass. One theory that the Egyptians deny is that a co-pilot was suicidal over trouble at work. The cause remains under investigation.