Woo-suk Big Time

Scientist Hwang Woo-suk denied, Tuesday, that he had spent research funds for personal use and said part of the money was used in attempts to clone mammoths, extinct relatives of today’s elephants.

In a news conference held inside the atrium of the brand new elephant exhibit within the cavernous halls of the 2 million dollar D`uk-Wa-Phat-Dan-Qeoui Building (English translation: “”The Massive and Beautiful Smell of Elephant Shit Building””), a plethora of reporters clung to every one of the scientist’s word. At least, to the words they could understand.

“”Not a single penny was spent for personal use,””; Hwang cried out from behind the pulpit, emphatically banging his 24-karat, canary yellow, diamond tipped cane on the microphone. When questioned about the legitimacy of his well-reported wealth and whether or not it might make people unsympathetic to his cause, Hwang responded, “”Did you hear what I said? I can clone a mammoth. A mammoth, motherfucker.””

Hwang was indicted in May for allegedly accepting 2 billion won (US $2.1 million) in private donations based on the findings of later reportedly falsified research and embezzling about 800 million won ($850,000) in private and government research funds. His penalty could be up to 3 years in prison.

Some of the research funds were used on housing for his researchers, gifts and tours for visiting foreign scholars, and meals for government officials, Hwang said, which he claimed were “part of research activities in the general sense.’ Dr. Andrea Callow, the head researcher at Yale University’s stem-cell research center, visited last year. Of her trip to Seoul, Hwang remarked, ‘My friend Steve said she had a great pair. She visited us. And I researched it.’ When asked his findings, Hwang reported, ‘Mmmmm.’

Once looked upon as a national treasure, Mr. Woo-suk has been fired from his job at the country’s top school, Seoul National University, and the government is stripping him of his state honors. It is a sad ending for a man who is widely considered one of the most brilliant researchers of his time. A cloud of shame hangs over his head as South Koreans everywhere ask that age old question, how much Woo could a Woo-suk suk, if a Woo-suk could suk Woo.

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