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Monday, March 30, 2009

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres



"British prime minister feuding with his chancellor of the exchequer. Sound familiar? It will to anyone with a cursory knowledge of recent British politics. The bitter feud between Tony Blair and his chancellor of the exchequer, Gordon Brown, was the defining dysfunction of Blair’s decade in office. It got so bad in the final months of Blair’s tenure that one Labour MP likened the quarrel to 'an episode of The Sopranos.' Now, history looks to be repeating itself as Brown locks horns with his chancellor, Alistair Darling, over the size of a stimulus package to revive the British economy. Having pumped extra money into the economy late last year, Brown wants to do it again. Darling, echoing a view on the Continent and among other nations not weighed down by the kind of indebtedness that afflicts Britain and the United States, doesn’t think Britain can afford it. He argues quietly that the supposed solution would be worse than the putative cure. The conflict is all the more embarrassing for Brown just now because he’s hosting the G-20 Summit in London this week." (TheDailyBeast)



"THE nanny who walked out on Madonna has revealed the torment she suffered working for the fiery star. Angela Jacobsen said she suddenly quit last week because she couldn't put up with 'this shit any more.' Now the 29-year-old Australian is taking legal advice over the confidentiality agreement she says she was forced to sign. Angela-who looked after the star's adopted son David Banda-says she handed in her notice only to be sacked by Madonna, 50, a few days later .. Angela's internet revelations paint Madge in poor light as she prepares to fly to Malawi to adopt a second African child-a baby girl .. Angela's internet revelations paint Madge in poor light as she prepares to fly to Malawi to adopt a second African child-a baby girl .. All Madonna's employees work incredibly long hours, so it's no surprise that Angela had had enough," a source said. 'If you work for Madonna you are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. There's no such thing as a weekend.'" (Newsoftheworld)

"Prince William let his hair down last night - having a drink with Guy Ritchie before enjoying a sexy dance with a brunette in a nightclub. The 26-year-old stopped at Ritchie's pub The Punch Bowl in Mayfair before heading off to shake his regal booty at nearby Whisky Mist .. The girl, named Kirsty, told us: 'I couldn't believe that I was dancing with the future King of England. I t was a crazy night. At one point he was gyrating behind me and I wa s thinking, Is this for real? I made it my mission to try and get William p***ed but he was having none of it. I was telling him to do shots of Sambuca but he wouldn't." (Thisislondon)



"Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, an avowed friend of the United States and the leader of the European Union’s biggest economy, is diplomatic about the coming visit by President Obama. But she is clear that she is not about to give ground on new stimulus spending, stressing the need to maintain fiscal discipline even as she professes to want to work closely with the new American president. Speaking in her modern concrete-and-glass Chancellery building last week, she underscored the points of drama that may well delineate the three summit meetings during Mr. Obama’s first trans-Atlantic trip since he was elected .. During the hourlong interview, Mrs. Merkel made clear that she was not wavering in her response to the economic crisis, by loosening the German checkbook or encouraging the European Central Bank to follow the Federal Reserve in pumping money into the system. She also said she expected Mr. Obama to keep his word to gradually rein in imbalances that would cause American indebtedness to grow sharply as a result of his domestic stimulus plans. Suggesting that the United States and Germany are not as far apart as some have intimated, Mrs. Merkel made plain that Mr. Obama may engender the foreign good will his predecessor, George W. Bush, largely lost, but nonetheless confront disagreements." (NYTimes)



(image via popculturepost)

"Volvo Fashion Week presented by Visa is already in its closing stages, but the scene Moscow is just heating up. Christian Louboutin is coming to town to visit his stores and co-host an opening and a dinner with David Lynch at Dasha Zhukova's Garage gallery. Dior will throw a bash in the Russian capital as well...but the most exciting event might not even happen until June. Naomi Campbell became perhaps the city's most famous housewife when she moved into posh Rublyovka with her boyfriend Vladislav Doronin, and now she's planning one of the biggest charity events the Russian capital might have ever seen with a spectacular fashion show to benefit one of her foundations. She's even getting the government involved--which, of course, means everything here." (Fashionweekdaily)

"Supermodel Naomi Campbell has being lined up for a career in Bollywood. Yep, the Streatham-born star wowed film execs with her appearance at the Fashion For Relief fundraiser in Mumbai. After taking to the runway in a sari, and being mobbed by fans, Naomi was introduced to top stars including Deepika Padukone, Farhan Akhtar and Kunal Kapoor. Our source says: 'Naomi has never modelled in India before but she loved every minute. At the end of the show, two well-known Bollywood producers approached her and asked her if she'd be interested in screen testing. Naomi was incredibly flattered and plans to come back to Mumbai for more talks whenever she next has a break in her schedule.'" (3AMGirls)

"NOW that Mickey Rourke is back in the spotlight, he's got hordes of desperate fame-whores trying to hook up with him. First there was Bai Ling, and now a Russian 'model/pop star' has leaked to local Russkie papers that she's going to marry 'The Wrestler' star. According to culturebuzz.com, Irson Kudikova, 26, met Rourke during his Moscow shoots for Iron Man 2 in which he plays a Russian gangster -- and Kudikova claims they're dating and about to be engaged. We'll believe it when we see it. Rourke's reps didn't return calls." (PageSix)

"National issues are being debated in New York’s special election Tuesday, but the outcome will be determined by purely local factors. The race will come down to 'who gets their vote out,' said John Jasper Nolan, Republican Party chairman in the 20th District’s most populous county, Saratoga. 'That’s been the issue from day one.' Nolan is focused on mobilizing party volunteers to turn out for GOP nominee Jim Tedisco, while the Democratic nominee, Scott Murphy, gets the aid of an AFL-CIO field operation. Get-out-the-vote activity took on a heightened sense of urgency after a poll March 27 showed the race in a dead heat. Likely voters polled March 25 and 26 by Siena Research Institute gave Democratic candidate Scott Murphy a narrow 4 percent lead over Tedisco, with a margin of error of 3.2 percent. Given the compressed schedule of the race and low turnout common to special elections, organizers on both sides say get-out-the-vote efforts will be the determining factor in the race." (CQPolitics)

"James Marsh’s 'Man on Wire' and Ari Folman’s 'Waltz With Bashir' were amomg the big winners tonight at the second Cinema Eye Awards, honoring outstanding achievement in documentary filmmaking. Marsh’s film won the Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction Feature Filmmaking prize and the production and editing prizes, while 'Waltz With Bashir' won four awards including achievement in directing, music, graphic design and animation, and best international feature." (Indiewire)



"Last week In L.A., Tatiana von Furstenberg hosted a conversation with Somaly Mam, a Cambodian author and human rights advocate who was sold into sexual slavery at a very young age. The event, part of DVF's 'Proud to Be Women' series, was a celebration of International Women's Month hosted by TVF, Diane von Furstenberg and Elle magazine at the Melrose DVF store. 'She did not even know her own name and was treated as if she was worthless,' Tatiana tells me. 'I can honestly say that she lives one of the most worthwhile lives of anyone I know of. She has single handedly changed and saved the lives of thousands of young girls and women.' To learn more about Somaly Mam, go to: www.somaly.org" (Papermag)



"VIRTUAL INSANITY/ Lucky Dragons, Michael Bell-Smith, James Howard, Olaf Breuning, Kathy Grayson, Jill Magid, John Michael Boling and Tiffany Malakooti .. Curated by Maxwell Williams, March 20 - April 19th 2009 .. Thanks to everyone who came out!" (CindersGallery)



"The American Museum of Natural History dance is typically aglow with New York's golden youth, but this year it added a dash of green to the mix. In line with the institution's new Climate Change exhibition, the evening's theme was eco-chic: soy candles, cardboard set pieces, and enough shrubbery (to be repurposed later by the museum's landscapers) for a pack of giraffes. Even if the sea bass wasn't local, the glam guests (including Jessica Alba, Tinsley Mortimer, and Leigh Lezark) were feeling earth-friendly vibes. After dinner, the party moved to the Cullman Hall of the Universe, where 21-year-old Dior Beauty girl (and, appropriately, Egyptology major) Harley Viera Newton spun dance tunes. Alba, en route to Yale with husband Cash Warren for his secret-society reunion, chatted with Milla Jovovich in the corner." (Style)

"This has been the Madoff season, and I didn’t make any new friends by naming names and expressing certain opinions about them. How strange people are. They take innocents down the Swanee and then howl that they’re being hard done by. Too bad. I read somewhere that Madoff was fond of Savile Row suits, expensive watches and very large houses in Palm Beach, on the Côte d’Azur and in the Hamptons. He would be, of course, but what bothered me the most was the fact that he owned three boats. Crooks and conmen try to clothe themselves in establishment credentials, and until recently—and the arrival of the oligarchs—boats were reserved for gentlemen." (Takimag)

"Leaders of advanced and emerging economies are closing ranks behind plans for tougher rules on financial markets to prevent another collapse like the one that wiped out much of Wall Street. A global approach to regulation has been gaining momentum ahead of the Group of 20 summit April 2 in London. U.S. President Barack Obama, U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown and their G-20 counterparts aim to merge their national blueprints for strengthened regulation into a united front to rein in hedge funds, derivatives trading, executive pay and excessive risk- taking by financial firms. 'There is reason for optimism that progress toward stronger global regulation has begun,' says Daniel Price, who was President George W. Bush’s G-20 negotiator and is now senior partner for global issues at Sidley Austin LLP in Washington. 'We’re beginning to see the outlines of a convergence.' Agreement on a shared regulatory agenda would provide the G-20 summit with a measure of success even as leaders remain at odds over trade policy, fiscal stimulus and the status of the dollar. A joint regulatory approach is crucial to prevent investors from seeking out markets with the most permissive rules, setting off a race to the bottom as countries vie to attract capital." (Bloomberg)

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