A Little of the Old In and Out
Flawed, to be sure: but still an incredibly vital institution. (image via gvfn)
In: The Washington Post. If you've read Michael Massing's exhaustive left-of-center essay in The New York Review of Books, you'll feel -- even if you are further along to the right -- a sense that the news has lost its purpose (Okay, okay, yes we did actually propose David Duchovny as CBS anchor-"host"; you were not having an acid flashback; we still think it's a solid). You need look no further than the vital, relevant, if flawed, Washington Post.
Hats off to the Washington Post for doing some kick-ass old fashioned reporting in the last few weeks. After the archetectonically-coiffed Graydon Carter handed them their buttocks on a silver platter after scooping The Washpo on "Deep Throat," the paper has picked itself up with renewed purpose and gotten, in the process, some serious scoopage. To wit: Last week's story-of-the-week, Dana Priest's superior Eastern European Terror Prison story, the Woodward-Scooter Libby conflagration, and yesterday's exclusive from Dana Milbank and Justin Blum that executives may have lied about their participation in Vice President Dick Cheney's Energy Commission. All of these instances have put the paper front-and-center once again. Now add Washpo reporter Walter Pincus, ruled in contempt for protecting his flawed sources in the Wen Ho Lee scandal.
Kudos to the Washpo, if not to Woodward. (We say this even as Huffington is beating the stuffins out of Woodward on her blog). Washpo's execution may leave something to be desired, but even when it's flawed it is something wonderous to behold.
There -- And we didn't even stoop so low as to mention Sally Quinn's jar of peanut butter in case of a terrorist attack. (link via Romenesko)
An Alaskan ass. (image via donyounghouse.gov)
Out: Congressman Don Young. Alaskan House member Don Young turned against his more principled Republican colleagues who, nobly, killed off the quixotic pet project for his district. Humiliated that he was caught stuffing pork -- via the fabled "Bridge to Nowhere" -- he's looking for some payback. Ninja-style! According to TheHill:
"An enraged Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska) confronted Reps. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and Marilyn Musgrave (R-Colo.) last week, excoriating them for lampooning his notorious 'Bridge to Nowhere' as a multibillion-dollar boondoggle.
"The chairman of the Transportation Committee had caught wind that the $223 million bridge was indeed going nowhere � and most House members learned yesterday that the project, which has caused Republicans acute embarrassment for two months, is being killed. So is another span, the $229 million 'Don Young Way.'
"According to witnesses, Young warned Flake and Musgrave that he planned to stay in Congress a long time and would not forget the stinging defeat.
"The confrontation with Young occurred at a closed-door meeting last Thursday."
Congressman Don Young on allegations of "pork" here. (Averted Gaze)
Defamer's Mark Lisanti and Mickey Kaus hug it out. (image via simplelifeinla)
In: The Gawker-HuffPo Party. Arianna Huffington took time out from bitchslapping Bob Woodward to open her Brentwood pad to the Gawker Media empire in the wake of their Yahoo! distribution deal. According to Rafat Ali:
"Surely, the dotcom days have turned into the blogosphere days, and so have the parties. At Arianna Huffington's house in deeply wooded section of Brentwood in West LA (where there was no T-mobile signal), the blog party of the moment happened. The occasion: Gawker's tie up with Yahoo, and of course, Huffington Post is already on Yahoo .. hence the trilogy of connections. Bill Maher showed up for a while...and then some more TV types. Lots of Yahoo people, including Lloyd Braun and Scott Moore. Short speeches by Arianna (thanking Yahoo and praising Nick Denton, the founder of Gawker media), Scott Moore (he joked about how Yahoo's stock went up 6 percent today, after the Gawker deal"
Hats off to anyone who can survive Ron Silver's incessant bloviating. More on Paidcontent, Gridskipper -- link via Blogebrity-- and FishbowlLa. (Photos here and here)
(image via 15minutesmagazine)
Out: Sir Howard Stringer. Our favorite gaijin is in trouble. Let's hope that this doesn't lead to the Seppuku ritual. Regard the defective CD debacle as symbolic of an internal SONY crisis in management. According to those intrepid Page Sixxies:
"THE back-stabbing at the badly merged SonyBMG � and finger-pointing over the expensive recall of 5 million dangerously defective CDs � is forcing Sony chairman Sir Howard Stringer to make some changes, insiders predict.
"Sources say Stringer will remove either SonyBMG CEO Andy Lack or SonyBMG Chairman Rolf Schmidt-Holtz, who has been blamed for the nasty leaks about Lack and his rumored early departure from the company.
"'Stringer has to do something � either fire one or the other, or move them around out of each other's way � because it is tearing the company apart,' an insider said."
Full story here.
(image via askmen)
In: Manolo Blahnik. Women of a certain class have a ... complicated ... emotional relationship with Manolo Blahnik and his high-grade footstuffs. It vexes us, quite frankly. Really and truly it does. Don't ask us to explain what makes Naomi Campbell whisper and Amy Fine Collins frenzy. Fuck if The Corsair knows. According to Fashionweekdaily:
"It�s not everyday Naomi Campbell attends a store party�even if it is Barneys New York.
But that�s exactly what she did Tuesday evening, as she arrived inconspicuously for a cocktail party celebrating the launch of Blahnik by Boman, a book that documents Manolo Blahnik�s legendary foot candy. 'I�ve loved Manolo since I was 15,' Campbell whispered. 'That�s when I first read about him.'
"She wasn�t alone. Hundreds of invited guests�major Blahnik addicts among them�generated Manolo-mania on the fourth floor shoe salon. A legion of fans, including Dr. Lisa Airan, Reed and Delphine Krakoff, Grace Coddington, Isabel and Ruben Toledo, Vera Wang, Amy Fine Collins, and John Bartlett, all gathered to buy out the stock of books�about 250 signed copies were sold�and shoes, of which several dozen were reportedly snapped up. The line, in fact, began forming at 6:30pm and remained steady well into the night. 'Women like frenzy,' Barneys chairman Howard Socol joked as he watched the furious signing of credit card slips and the trying on of shoes. 'It�s healthy for them.'"
The full story here.
Brittany's got it twisted. (image via exchangedesktop)
Out: Brittany Murphy. There is something about Brittany Murphy -- is it the big, crazy eyes? -- that suggests to The Corsair: mental instability. And by mental instability, we don't mean "There's a frog in my hair" craziness, we suggest, rather, Michael Meyer's Halloween potential. This news on Radar Online kind of makes us glad we are on the east coast (lik via defamer):
"In a double-barreled dose of Hollywood bitchslappery, actress Brittany Murphy was dropped on Tuesday by both her agent, ICM�s Jeff Berg, and manager, Brillstein-Grey�s Joanne Colonna, West Coast sources confirm.
�'She was a client at Brillstein-Grey for 12 years, and she�s no longer a client there or at ICM, either,' says a high-level industry insider. 'They decided to let her go.'
"Why the blue-chip firms set the 28-year-old actress adrift so suddenly�even though she was recently named the face of Jordache and has a number of projects in the works, including a Sin City sequel�remains unclear. According to a source close to Murphy, the skinny Uptown Girls starlet was kicked to the curb for unspecified 'personal' reasons."
Full story here, with some "Awful Truths" about Britney from Ted Casablancas.
(image via HBO)
In: HBO's Rome. While we didn't quite cry like a bitch over Pullo and Veronus' heartbreaking scene of friendship in the gladiatorial fundament on last week's Rome, we may have sprayed some hot tears. Don't quoter me. The series was renewed for another season (yes!), but at $100 million things are not assured (Let's hope the DVD's fly off the shelves; this blog will do its part). According to Bill Carter of The Old Gray Lady:
"As for 'Rome,' he said, HBO has been encouraged by the series' growth among viewers and by a second round of critical comments, which largely moved from tepid to enthusiastic.
"In strict viewer terms, HBO calls 'Rome' a success because, while its Sunday totals are not overwhelming, it accumulates more than 7 million viewers a week during its multiple showings.
Mr. Albrecht announced only a couple of weeks into its run that he was renewing the series for another season. But in the interview he said, 'That ship hasn't entirely sailed yet.'
"The reason, he said, has nothing to do with how well 'Rome' turned out. Mainly, the issue has been money. 'Rome' was wildly expensive, costing an estimated $100 million. It initially experienced debilitating production delays, fueling rumors that it was a troubled show. Once it was on the air and was seen to be a quality production, Mr. Albrecht said, those rumors subsided.
"But he said those delays meant he had only a short window of time to retain a hold on the actors, which was why he renewed the series so quickly. For now, that means ordering scripts, which will be difficult to write because they need to cover the complicated period following the fall of Caesar."
Valeo. We're so goddamned there. More.