More Money May Be on the Table at Microsoft, So Are Walking and Whacking

Microsoft — which has spent the last three months in a frustrating bout of fisticuffs with Yahoo over its unwelcomed buyout offer — has finally begun to show some signs of life, after having spent the five days since its ultimatum ran out in near-total silence.

Reports began to surface yesterday that a move was imminent, with the Wall Street Journal reporting that a decision to either launch a move to oust Yahoo's board or commit to taking the battle directly to shareholders could come as early as the afternoon. Their sources proved partially right, with reports surfacing this morning that the Big Evil Board has granted Satan's Little Helper himself full authority to decide whether to take the battle medieval or to walk away. Which choice everyone's favorite scalawag will settle on is a matter ripe with speculation, though a new option — one the Empire has repeatedly and vehemently declared it would never consider — has appeared on the table: raising its bid, which has lost $2 per share due to Microsoft's freefalling stock price, by $3-$4 per share. That, along with the recent bout of run-away talk, suggests that someone has finally realized they aren't going to win the way things are going.

How Mr. Ballmer plays the cards his board has dealt him could, at least according to some observers, determine how long he remains Microsoft's Chief Rapscallion. He may think he's going to "chip away at Google" but it could be his own job security that ends up crumbling.

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