blog advertising is good for you

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres



"The Middle East peace process is the longest running piece of diplomatic theater on the world stage. Dating from World War One, the effort to reconcile the aspirations of the Jews and the Arabs for statehood in the lands seized from the Ottoman Empire by the Allies in World War One and assigned to the British has inspired wave after wave of commission reports, diplomatic ventures, formal and informal negotiations direct and indirect between the parties, debates and resolutions in the League of Nations and the UN, passionate political debates within the region and beyond, one war after another, and waves of ethnic violence and terrorism by both Arabs and Jews. The debate has always been between two general visions of the future of the land: a one-state solution in which the region’s Arab majority would establish a state with varying levels of possible protection and autonomy for the Jews (ranging from expulsion to some kind of confederal status) or a multi-state solution in which a Jewish state and one or more Arab states would divide the territory with varying levels of protection and guarantees for minorities caught on the ‘wrong’ side of the borders. Classically, the Arabs have rejected partition plans, taking the view that the natural and historical majority of the people should be able to exercise the right of self determination and form a single state in Palestine. During the Oslo era, many (though never all) Palestinian leaders accepted the idea that the best realistic option would be a further partition of British Palestine into two states west of the Jordan River. (Jordan was carved out of Palestine earlier in the century; technically, what people now call the ‘two state solution’ should be called the ‘three state solution’: there would be one Jewish and two Arab states in the territory Britain took from the Ottomans in World War One.) Now there are signs that the two-state era in Arab politics is coming to an end, and that the next stage will see Arabs returning to the idea that there should be just one state between the Jordan and the Mediterranean." (Walter Russell Meade)



(image via nysocialdiary)

"On Thursday, May 6, at 2:45 in the afternoon, the billionaire industrialist Wilbur Ross was interviewing a job candidate in his 27th-floor office when his computer screen went all red. The Dow, which had opened the day above 10,800, began falling. It dropped, paused and then plunged monumentally, down past 10,400 and 10,000 and then 9,900, in a Newtonian whoosh. Mr. Ross, 72, asked his interviewee to step out. "Then we bought some Greek bonds, and we tried to buy some other things," he said later, wearing a silk tie patterned with hot-air balloons. 'After we put the orders in, I brought the young man back. Once you bought, you bought.' The biggest intraday drop in the history of the Dow, nearly 1,000 points, didn't happen because of a calamity: No monuments had been burned and not a single colossal European country had defaulted. It just came. And then it went." (Observer)



"Entertainer Lena Horne, who died on Sunday, was an amazingly visual singer—thus it's hardly surprising that she was the first African-American vocalist to have a substantial career in the movies. But her talents were not exclusively visual: even when working in a purely aural medium, she was a brilliant and often swinging interpreter of the Great American Songbook. Horne tended to denigrate her own singing ability, thinking of herself as just another pretty face, but her recordings were consistently outstanding, and she made more than a few classic albums over what has to be the longest career of any major American performer. Here are five choices that I would start with .." (VanityFair)



"The art collection of eccentric tech mogul Halsley Minor will be auctioned off at Phillips de Pury tomorrow to pay off some of his huge debts. The collection -- 96 works by such artists as Jeff Koons, Andy Warhol, Ed Ruscha and three pieces by Richard Prince including 'Nurse in Hollywood #4' -- is expected to fetch about $25 million, enough to cover the $22 million loan from ML (Merrill Lynch) Private Finance that Minor defaulted on. The art was put up as collateral. Minor, known as 'the bad boy of Silicon Valley,' made $100 million in 2000 when he sold CNET. But he spent it all, and then some. The Virginia native bought a $20 million house in Bel Air, a $15 million mansion in San Francisco, and a $15 million plantation on 400 acres in Charlottesville, Va., where he also started building a hotel that's now abandoned. Among his debts, Minor owes $13 million in taxes in California." (PageSix)



(image via trustcorp)

"The Trustocorp crew—who when last we checked in were filling stores with fake products like Banko$ (eat the rich) cereal—are back with a new public service sign. It reads: Don't Feed The Hipsters, and is appropriately placed in McCarren Park, where kickball season just began. But let's presuppose someone ignored this warning and did feed the hipsters, what do you think they like to eat? (Asking for a friend.)" (Gothamist)



"MacGruber, made for less than $11 million, is an outgrowth of the Pepsi commercial that aired during the Super Bowl in 2009. 'I have never allowed a character to do a commercial. I don’t want anything from our world in another context,' Michaels says. “But I thought we could do an episode of MacGruber because they’re about a minute, and it wouldn’t compromise it in the least, and we could tie in Pepsi because that’s just one more reason for him to stop and pause before defusing the bomb.' After the commercial aired during the peak-viewership third quarter, an executive at Lionsgate phoned Michaels and asked him to consider doing a full-length feature ...I ask (Lorne) Michaels how he feels about another of his former employees, Conan O’Brien, and O’Brien’s recent interview with 60 Minutes about the spot of bother with Jay Leno over The Tonight Show. 'The whole thing just makes me sad,' says Michaels, who was advising NBC/Universal chief executive Jeff Zucker through much of the unpleasantness. 'The network was trying to make an orderly transition because of all the chaos of the Letterman-Leno thing, and they planned it five years in advance, and I don’t think Jay felt like he was ready to go. From what I gather, he got a big offer from ABC which would’ve been against Conan and Letterman. So everything made sense when the decision was made. The network did not want him coming against Conan. You know, there was no grand Machiavellian scheme. My experience with the network is that nothing is that well organized' ... He’s noncommittal about O’Brien’s decision to leave broadcast television for the cable network TBS. 'I think the whole landscape will change again,' he says. 'I think he’s opposite Jon Stewart, and I think that’s going to be an interesting battle to watch.'" (TheDailybeast)



"Alan Brinkley's epic new biography, The Publisher: Henry Luce and His American Century, has been widely and rightly praised for its breadth, depth, and fine writing. Luce was a complex, even tormented man, whose instincts for journalism, business, and the mood of America in his time were so acute that his magazine enterprise—led by the flagship, Time—is still a major force decades after his death in 1967. The impact of Brinkley's book has been boosted by its release at a moment in which the 'existential' nature of the printed magazine (to quote Newsweek's editor, Jon Meacham) is being tested as never before. When asked about his prescience, Brinkley notes that he is the beneficiary of having taken much longer to write the book than he anticipated. Brinkley is the Allan Nevins Professor of American History at Columbia, served as the university's provost, and is the chairman of The Century Foundation (where I am a senior fellow). There is welcome serendipity to having a meticulous account of the origins and rise of the news magazine (and its off-shoots—Fortune, Life, Sports Illustrated, and shortly after Luce's death, People) at this moment. The book provides invaluable perspective to the current embattled status of the category." (TheAtlantic)



(image via NYSD)

"I went down to the Metropolitan Club where City Harvest was holding its annual On Your Plate fundraising lunch. They were honoring Silda Wall Spitzer, Founding Chair of Children for Children. As last year’s honoree, I was selected to introduce Silda after which she spoke and then gathered a panel of school kids from New York City who have been involved with City Harvest, to talk about it. If there is such a thing as a favorite charity, or rather, a charity that resonates, City Harvest does it for me. If you didn’t know, quickly: They collect more than 26 million pounds of excess food from all segments of the food industry and deliver it free of charge to almost 600 community food programs. Using a fleet of trucks and bikes and volunteers on foot. Each week they help over 260,000 hungry New Yorkers find their next meal. We’re none of us all that far from the possibility of going hungry – which is not the same as 'being' hungry – which is the state most of us live in. Going hungry is an assault on the body and a blow to our inner strength. Once going hungry, he or she is on dangerous path and knows it. Keeping us fed and nourished is an embrace and nurtures and provides the strength to hope, and protect us. City Harvest does all this. Silda Spitzer has a full time job as the Managing Director of business development and strategic positioning at Metropolitan Capital Advisors." (NYSocialDiary)



"For the second straight year, amFar will hold its signature Cannes gala, Cinema Against AIDS, at Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc. The designer lineup is as impressive as ever. Karl Lagerfeld, Tom Ford, Giorgio Armani, Roberto Cavalli, Peter Dundas, and amfAR chairman Kenneth Cole are all set to attend the festivities alongside Kirsten Dunst, Marion Cotillard, Emily Blunt, Elizabeth Banks, Kate Beckinsale, Russell Crowe, Sean Penn, Diane Kruger, Kristin Scott Thomas, Naomi Watts, Rachel Bilson, Diego Luna, Bar Refaeli, and Carine Roitfeld. Alan Cumming will host the festivities, while Mary J. Blige will perform again, as she did in 2008. This will be undoubtedly the biggest event at the festival, although Cavalli, Gucci, Chopard, and Naomi Campbell are hosting lavish affairs on their own." (TheDaily)



(image via latimes)

"Newsweek editor Jon Meacham last week said two wealthy individuals left him voice mails after The Washington Post Co. said it would put the struggling magazine on the selling block. Meacham further noted he might be interested in partnering with a few people to buy the unprofitable newsweekly. Cut to Tuesday afternoon at Michael’s restaurant — where no person goes unnoticed and where Meacham was spotted having lunch with none other than falling Wall Street tycoon (and President Obama’s former car czar) Steven Rattner. The former Quadrangle Group executive — whose star has been severely tarnished by the investigation by the New York State Attorney General and the Securities and Exchange Commission into his involvement in a pension kickback scandal — certainly knows the print world since he was a reporter at The New York Times before moving into finance and since Quadrangle made several media deals while he was there. So perhaps Rattner is considering a move on his own or with others into the magazine business?" (WWD via Observer)



(Diane Kruger via style)

"The town of Saint-Tropez has been a Riviera destination for Karl Lagerfeld for several years now. 'More than I care to say,' he told us Monday night after a screening of his latest short film, Remember Now. Starring Elisa Sednaoui, Leigh Lezark, Heidi Mount, and Pascal Greggory, the flick glorifies the 24-hour revelry in this coastal playground for the rich and grandiose—revelry that the house of Chanel is temporarily orchestrating ... The second phase of the opening night was an exciting game of bocce (don't worry: I didn't know what that was, either, but turns out it's pretty similar to the game of washers or horseshoes, which this reporter played back home in St. Louis—perhaps the only similarity between Saint cities Louis and Tropez). People weren't messing around: 'I want that trophy,' Diane Kruger cooed to boyfriend Joshua Jackson, who promptly got on the case, pep-talking his team and organizing the duels. Poor Vanessa Paradis didn't stand a chance. 'C'est impossible,' she cried out to the photographers, who would launch an explosion of flashes every time she tried to hurl down her bocces." (Style)

No comments: