Got to hand it to my main man Mark Murray at Microsoft. (How's that for alliteration?) Sir Mark, the company's corporate PR guy, is the poor schnook charged with sanitizing his bosses' missteps.
To wit: A few years ago Microsoft sent Murray to Washington as its chief spinmeister during the company?s antitrust trial. "Today is another good day for Microsoft," he would invariably intone before his afternoon summations of the day's events. It was a valiant albeit fruitless exercise because the Justice Department's David Boies was picking apart Microsoft's witnesses to the point where even I began feeling sorry for these guys. But Murray gave it the old college try and you had to admire his moxie.
That trait will serve him well these days. In the dustup over Microsoft's position on a Washington State gay rights bill, it was reported that Ralph Reed Jr., who used to head the Christian Coalition, has been on Microsoft's retainer since 1998 to the tune of beaucoup thousands of dollars.
And so it was that in an interview with the New York Times on Wednesday, Murray said Reed was brought on board to be an advisor on "competition and trade issues."
When he's not telling Microsoft how best to chart its business strategy, Reed is running for Georgia Lt. Governor. But if you click on his listed biography, you'll find nary a reference to his background as an international trade expert. The closest I could find was a listing of his membership in the "Leadership Trust of the National Federation of Independent Business." Of course, he also is an Eagle Scout with Troop 77 so maybe that's the secret sauce.