MICROSOFT BETTER be trembling in its boots with last week's announcement that Dream Team lawyer Johnnie Cochran has filed a fourth racial-discrimination suit against the company—guaranteeing that his signature courtroom oratory will be used to devastating effect. If the guy can get O.J. off, the software leviathan doesn't stand a chance. (Indeed, recalling Bill Gates' videotaped antitrust trial depositions, Cochran will probably cut him to shreds the way he did Kato Kaelin.) Already, we hear, the grandiloquent attorney is busy rehearsing his moot court arguments against the House of Bill, which have a certain familiar lilt to their rhetoric:
Cochran: Putting Microsoft on trial.
"How can we rise to higher station when Microsoft is run like a plantation?"
"For talented black managers, it's control-alt-delete. That's why we're gonna turn up the heat."
"The button they're pressin' is labeled oppression."
"Bill forgets about promotions until black folks cause some commotions."
"How can brothers write the next Office sequel when Microsoft still clings to separate but equal?"
"If you keep favoring the white Anglo-Saxon, I'm gonna introduce you to Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson."
"Don't divide Redmond with an ugly schism, let's work together to heal corporate racism."
"If you want to dominate the World Wide Web, let race relations rise above this low ebb."
"Put racial practices in better shape, and we'll help you finish off what's left of Netscape."
"Let's work together—it's Oracle we hate. We'll whip Ellison's ass if you'll only integrate."