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Monday, September 20, 2010

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres



"The United Nations General Assembly kicks off today, bringing together leaders of 192 countries. But just west of it, a competing summit will bring together thought-leaders from across the globe to tackle many of the same problems that are on the table at Turtle Bay. And even President Obama will make an appearance. The Clinton Global Initiative, now in its sixth year, will feature Nobel laureates, CEOs, presidents, and a trio of first ladies—making it seem like a 21st century initiative that could ultimately eclipse the older institution. CGI is fast building a track record that has some wondering if its leaner model may be the better way to address the multitude of problems facing the global community. All it needs is a standing army. 'Most U.N. organizations concern themselves with setting global policy,' says Paul Farmer, the celebrated activist and director of Partners in Health who has been involved with CGI since its inception. 'But what happens at CGI is the nitty-gritty of deal-making between philanthropists and the people who get it done.' The U.N. may have the advantages of age (it's almost 65 years old,) a charter, a 120,000-member army, a $4.2 billion budget (excluding peace-keeping operations,) a secretariat with about 40,000 employees, and stylishly appointed headquarters with to-die-for river views. But it is also littered with problems, both real and perceived." (TheDailybeast)



(image via NYSD)

"Well, now that Fashion Week is behind and Lincoln Center can return to the business of being a destination for the arts, New Yorkers now have UN Week to look forward to (or dread, depending). It’s a week long traffic gridlock (especially if you live on the same side of town as the UN). All week long will be black official limousines and big black official SUVs with their darkly tinted windows traveling in caravan, filled with men in dark suits and wires connected to their ears. They move swiftly through the streets and up and down the avenues, often with the red and blue twirling lights on their roofs or in their rear windows ... Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Ahmadinejad, Obama, Mrs. Obama, Prince Albert of Monaco, Ashton Kutcher (??!!!) and even Carla Bruni. The beautiful and sexy Mme. Sarkozy and her husband, the President of France, were lunching alone (without security, zut alors!) Saturday at Amaranth on East 62nd Street between Madison and Fifth. No closing down the blocks. In fact, no attention from even the lunch crowd. Amaranth is a favorite of the Sarkozys; they’ve been several times before. You can see what the attraction is in the picture. The Vice President of the United States, Joe Biden evidently likes it too: he has been seen lunching there more than once recently." (NYSocialDiary)



"Senate Democrats certainly got a boost this week with Rep. Michael N. Castle’s stunning defeat in Delaware’s GOP primary. But once the party’s euphoria wears off in the First State, Democrats still have to face the reality that the national political environment is still tilted decidedly against them and several races around the country continue to shift in favor of Republicans. After moving the rating of the Delaware contest to reflect Democrats’ much improved prospects of holding the Senate seat, CQ Politics is moving the race ratings in a handful of other Senate contests in favor of the GOP. Three races — in Florida, Kentucky and New Hampshire — are being moved from Tossup to Leans Republican. The Arkansas Senate contest is being moved from Leans Republican to the less competitive category of Likely Republican and the West Virginia race is moving from Likely Democratic to the more competitive category of Leans Democratic. Florida’s race rating had been considered a Tossup due to what appeared to be the unexpected strength of Florida Gov. Charlie Crist’s Independent bid over the summer. But following the state’s Aug. 24 primaries, public polls have shown former state House Speaker Marco Rubio (R) steadily pulling away from Crist and Rep. Kendrick Meek (D)." (CQPolitics)



"Buyers and sellers of acquisition titles walked away from the Toronto International Film Festival exhausted from the all-night haggling sessions, but energized and cautiously optimistic. They feel the prolific deal making is a sign the specialty film biz has righted a course of drunken deal making by studios that raised stakes to unreasonable levels before retreating. The Toronto's fest's primary role will always be as an awards season platform, and a cost-efficient way to fly in junket journalists and Golden Globe voters for screenings and marathon press conferences. This year, Toronto re-established itself alongside Sundance as the two most important festivals to secure distribution for finished films." (Deadline)



"A little dose of anticipated controversy always helps boost TV ratings, as it surely did for MTV’s Video Music Awards telecast last Sunday. And that translated to higher mobile activity for MTV’s iPhone and Android apps, as well as more users going to its mobile WAP site. Alongside the 11.4 million viewers—up 27 percent from last year’s VMA’s—MTV counted 1.2 million mobile views on Sunday and mobile traffic hitting its all time peak on Monday with 1.7 million mobile views, nearly quadruple and triple, respectively, for the same categories last year." (David Kaplan/PaidContent)

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