US bans sale of iPods, plasma TVs to North Korea

The Bush administration wants North Korea's attention. So, like a scolding parent, it is working to make it tougher for that country's eccentric leader to buy iPods, plasma televisions and Segway electric scooters. The US government's first-ever effort to use trade sanctions to the personal aggravation of a foreign president expressly targets items believed to be favored by Kim Jong Il or presented by him as gifts to the roughly 600 loyalist families who run the communist government. Kim, who engineered a secret nuclear weapons program, has other options for obtaining the high-end consumer electronics and other items he relishes. But the list of proposed luxury sanctions, obtained by The Associated Press, aims to make Kim's swanky life harder to come by: No more cognac, Rolex watches, cigarettes, artwork, expensive cars, Harley Davidson motorcycles or even personal watercraft, such as Jet Skis.