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Here are some interesting and amusing developments that the staff at Money Talks was talking about this week, but never got around to writing about...

1. Aflac dumps duck voice actor for tasteless tweets

Since 2000, comedian Gilbert Gottfried has been the voice of the duck in those Aflac commercials that touted insurance company Aflac. But after he tweeted tasteless jokes about earthquake and tsunami victims in Japan, the company fired him. Overreaction? “One in four homes in Japan buys health insurance from Aflac,” ABC News reported.

2. Man fired over obscene Chrysler tweet is sorry

A stupid tweet also cost a Chrysler contractor his job. Last week, Scott Bartosiewicz tweeted, “I find it ironic that Detroit is known as “Motor City” and yet no one here knows how to (expletive) drive.” Problem is, instead of typing this from his personal Twitter account, he did it through the Chrysler feed. Not only was Bartosiewicz fired, but Chrysler decided “not to renew its contract with Bartosiewicz’s employer, New Media Strategies, a Virginia-based marketing firm,” MSNBC reported.

3. Largest existing gold nugget sells at auction for $400,000

A seven-pound gold nugget sold at auction last week for $400,000 – even though it’s only worth $140,000 if it were melted down. “But since the nugget, found last year in Nevada County, California, is believed to be the largest one left from the state’s gold rush, it has special value,” CNN reported. The winner was an anonymous phone bidder.

4. Diet Coke passes Pepsi to become No. 2 soda in U.S.

The country’s top-selling soft drink is Coke. And now at No. 2 is…Diet Coke. For the first time, Coca-Cola owns the top two slots, dethroning Pepsi from its No. 2. perch. “Diet Coke’s rise reflects a long-term trend toward diet sodas,” USA Today reported. “Ten years ago, only two of the top 10 were diet sodas. Now, four are on the list: the diet versions of Coke, Pepsi, Mountain Dew and Dr Pepper.”

5. Larry Kudlow Devalues Human Life With Japan Earthquake Freudian Slip

This isn’t funny ha-ha, it’s funny outrageous. CNBC’s well-known anchor Larry Kudlow said this on the air after the Japanese earthquake and tsunami: “The human toll here looks to be much worse than the economic toll and we can be grateful for that.” Kudlow later apologized – but on Twitter, not on the business network where he uttered those words.

Stacy Johnson

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