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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres



"C. David Heyman called in to (the Howard Stern Show to)promote his new book, 'Bobby & Jackie: A Love Story,' about the affair RFK and Jackie Kennedy allegedly had after JFK's death: 'The inner sanctum of the Kennedys were all aware of it.' David claimed RFK was once even seen fingering Jackie in the garden of the Kennedy compound in Palm Beach - and was the one who masterminded her marriage to JFK: "It was his idea that JFK marry Jackie in the first place. He recognized, you know, that her beauty, her education, her bearing, etcetera would elevate the Kennedy family from the back political pages of the paper to the society pages.' Robin and Howard thought it was unbelievable how many of the Kennedys' private affairs went unnoticed and David agreed: 'It shouldn't have been called Camelot but Came-a-lot.' David added that the Secret Service log files of JFK's visitors would really blow some minds: 'Women were just coming and going... Jackie said, You know, all Kennedy men are like that. It doesn't mean a thing. Howard then cited his favorite revelation from David's book: the fact that JFK would relax before each of his debates with Nixon by banging a hooker." (HowardStern)



"Earlier this week, my father was wrongly accused of breaking into his own home. We had just returned from China, and he had flown from New York to Boston to prepare for a few days rest on Martha’s Vineyard. As my father was settling in, a police officer named Sgt. James Crowley showed up at his home. Sgt. Crowley said he was responding to a call from a woman who described two black men breaking into her neighbors’ home with backpacks on. He demanded to see proof of residency and my father showed him both his Harvard ID and his state ID without hesitation. Shortly afterward, a miscommunication ensued, and my father was handcuffed and taken to jail. Our family is both saddened and outraged at this, and as I watched his mug shot scroll across various news stations last night, I couldn’t help but wonder what he was experiencing." (Elizabeth Gates/TheDailyBeast)



"The annual summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is held to coordinate action on such weighty topics as democracy, economic integration, and climate change. But since 1995, every diplomat worth his or her salt has known that the real reason everyone attends ASEAN is for the infamous skit in which the pan-Pacific power elite get to ham it up, summer-camp style. But don't think it's all fun and games. When national pride and diplomatic standing are at stake, skits are serious business. Here's a brief history of the tasteless tradition." (ForeignPolicy)



"Leonardo Dicaprio switched his attention to yet another stunning model last night as he continued marauding through London's nightclubs. The 34-year-old was once again surrounded by beautiful women, this time at Mayfair bar Whisky Mist. Our spy there told us: 'Leo was loving the attention of all the women around him but he seemed to focus on a model called Amanda Charlwood. They had dinner at Guy Ritchie's pub The Punch Bowl earlier in the evening but decided to leave separately. 'Amanda is high profile in her own right and clearly thought it best not to be pictured with Leo, but they seemed to be getting on very well. They then headed to Whisky Mist, where Leo went to see his friend Marie Clare DJing.' Despite his usual 'incognito' get-up of baseball cap and casual clobber, all eyes were on Leo and his table. Our spy added: 'Leo was having a great time. He was surrounded by close friends and loads of women who were vying for his attention.'" (Thisislondon)



"Pucho is a sorrel-colored gelding with a white stripe down his face, big haunches and bulging leg muscles. He’s all power. Brasita is small, dark and feminine. Notice her well-formed knees and fetlocks as she coyly paws the shavings on the floor. The mare’s got great moves. 'With her, you try get a little more sneaky,' polo sensation Nacho Figueras explained on a recent sunny afternoon in Bridgehampton. He was giving me a tour of the pipe-and-sheet-metal stables where the Black Watch Team 'ponies,' as polo horses are often called, will be living for the next two months. 'But with [Pucho], you try to make a play where you hit the ball and run.'" (Spencer Morgan/Observer)

"A group of Democrats elected in recent years from some of the country's richest congressional districts have emerged as a stumbling block to raising taxes on the wealthy to pay for President Barack Obama's ambitious health-care overhaul just as the plan has begun to meet increasing resistance over its cost. Friday, two freshmen representatives -- Dina Titus, from suburban Las Vegas, and Colorado's Jared Polis, representing Boulder, Vail and some of the tonier suburbs of Denver -- joined Republicans to vote against Mr. Obama's top-priority health-care overhaul when it faced a vote in their House Education and Labor Committee. One reason was a one-percentage point-surtax on couples earning between $350,000 and $500,000 -- gradually increasing to 5.4 percentage points on earnings more than $1 million -- to pay for it. The bill passed the committee anyway, but if the number of Democratic defectors grows it could pose a serious obstacle to the president." (WSJ)



"Our dear Mr. Mickey's passion for fashion, while still intact, is being seriously challenged by his desire and commitment to building a school in India! Since there is no half-steppin' with Mickey, he organized and hosted a benefit along with Citta's Michael Daube, Luigi Tadini, Matthew Modine, Peter Davis and Nicky Balestieri, a fundraising party at the Thompson Hotel's Thom Bar. As guests nibbled on delicious food and sipped Heering Xanté (thanks to their generosity) cocktails, Mickey introduced the guests to Michael, explaining that he founded CITTA with the money he got after finding a David Hockney painting, selling it to Sotheby's and going to Mother Teresa for advice!" (Papermag)



(image via DPC/NYSocialDiary)

"I could have Twittered: Monday night I went to a buffet dinner given by Jesse Kornbluth and his beautiful wife Karen Collins, mother of his brilliant and beautiful little daughter Helen. Karen is an excellent cook. Karen is, I should add, a professional chef (by training/background) .. The evening was a celebration of Jesse having just completed his collaboration with Twyla Tharp on her new book/memoir/autobiography. Something like that; I’m not sure .. The Collins-Kornbluth guest list is very gemutlich one, with a lot of writers, such as Geraldine Baum who is the LA Times correspondent in New York, Steve Aronson; Amanda Vaill, who wrote the biography of Jerome Robbins that was turned into a PBS American Master documentary; and before that 'Everybody Was So Young: Gerald and Sara Murphy – A Lost Generation Love Story.' So it was one of those parties where there was a lot of talk going on everywhere all the time." (NYSocialDiary)



"Are you still choked up from Chris Brown's video mea culpa that emerged a couple of days ago? I hope that's why you're choked up and not because some thug is at your throat. I thought his performance was fine, and I even liked the Star Trek outfit and hoop earrings. But I thought Chris spoke way too quickly, as if the producer was saying, 'Hurry. We only have two minutes of tape.'" (Musto)



"Polish, Czech and other immigrants from the countries that joined the EU in 2004 have more than paid their way, contributing more in taxes than they receive in benefits and services from the UK welfare state, according to new research. More than 500,000 immigrants from the eight accession countries joined the UK workforce, producing the standard concern with every wave of immigration that they might take out more than they put in, said Christian Dustmann, professor of economics at University College London. Fears tough UK visa law deters overseas students. But a study of the contributions and likely claims of those who have been in the country for at least a year – and who are therefore eligible to claim benefits – shows they are 60 per cent less likely than natives to receive state benefits or tax credits, and 58 per cent less likely to live in social housing. In addition the study, using the four years of data available since 2004, showed that the immigrants 'contribute significantly more to the tax and benefit system than they receive',said Prof Dustmann who heads the Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration at UCL." (FT)



"For the second day in a row, POTUS dialed up Max Baucus for a progress report.
'I think he is very pleased with my progress report, very pleased,' Baucus told reporters. 'He felt very good about it. He said that's great, you're doing great.'
But Baucus said he didn't give the president anything to announce at tonight's press conference." (Politico)



"At dinner last night with some good friends from my days at the Republican National Committee, we got to talking about the current campaigns for governor in my home state of Virginia and my seemingly adopted state of New Jersey. I opined that while it was clear that the Republican candidates for governor in both states were running ahead right now, Republicans couldn't afford to take anything for granted -- that Virginia's political demographics had changed significantly over the last decade, and that New Jersey is, well, New Jersey, where Republicans have had a tough go of it these last, oh, 38 years or so. Then this morning I read my Washington Post, and I did a double-take -- GOP gubernatorial nominee Bob McDonnell yesterday announced the endorsement of Sheila Johnson, the co-founder of Black Entertainment Television, the nation's (world's?) first black female billionaire, and -- wait for it -- a major Democratic donor to both current governor, Tim Kaine, and former Gov. Mark Warner." (CQPolitics)



"Patton Boggs continued its reign as the top earner on K Street, raking in $18.5 million from its lobbying activity so far this year, according to an analysis of midyear lobbying revenue totals by The Hill. Akin Gump and Van Scoyoc Associates took second and third place in the race for lobbying receipts, bringing in $16 million and $13.4 million, respectively. Revenues at the two top firms, though, were off the totals they reported for the first six months of 2008, as a sluggish economy continued to be a drag on K Street. In total, 13 of the 25 largest lobbying firms reported revenue declines during the first six months of 2009, according to The Hill’s survey. Some lobbying shops, though, bucked the trend, buoyed by an activist administration and Democratic Congress. The Podesta Group was the fourth biggest earner on K Street, reporting revenues of $11.6 million for the first six months of the year, a 57 percent jump over its receipts from the first half of 2008." (TheHill)



"The Toronto International Film Festival - running September 10-19 - has unveiled another slew of titles for its 34th edition, including 17 documentaries, its genre-focused Midnight Madness program, and avant-garde Wavelengths program. The announced docs and the Midnight Madness films will both get a chance to benefit from another piece of TIFF-issued news. The festival announced two new awards - the Cadillac People’s Choice Award for Documentary, and Cadillac People’s Choice Award - Midnight Madness. The new prizes will recognize the most popular documentary film and the most popular film of the Midnight Madness programme, as chosen by audiences throughout the festival. The new awards will be announced and given out at TIFF’s awards reception on Saturday, September 19. The new categories join the festival’s main Cadillac People’s Choice Award, which last year went to Danny Boyle’s Oscar mammoth 'Slumdog Millionaire.'" (IndieWIRE)



"Lilly Allen confirmed her interest in British art by joining Damien Hirst, the most famous — or notorious — Young British Artist at Scott's in Mayfair last night. The singer, 24, dined with Hirst at the restaurant, which is also a favoured haunt of Tracey Emin. And she returned to the restaurant's outside table to talk to a mystery man where she was recently seen enjoying a cigarette with Charles Saatchi, the art collector." (Thisislondon)



"ANDERSON Cooper at the Santa Maria Della Victoire Church in Rome with a muscled, older gentleman, checking out the Bernini sculptures .." (PageSix)

"Wednesday at Michaels: Barbara Walters with Diana Taylor, Katie Couric, Deborah Roberts, Somers Farkas, Sherrie Rollins, Dick Parsons ... More Michaels: Leonard Lauder, Judy Licht, Dr. Gerry Imber, Jeff Greenfield, Stan Shuman, Michael Kramer, Michael Gross, Jonathan Wald." (NYSocDiary via Twitterberry)

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