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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres


 
"A senior Saudi Arabian oil official said in 2007 that the kingdom has 388 billion barrels of recoverable crude oil reserves, about 45 percent more than official public estimates. But about the same time, a retired Saudi Aramco executive met with U.S. diplomats in Dhahran and asserted that the country's figures in general are wildly overblown, and that it is headed for a production peak around 2020, followed by a slow decline according to new WikiLeaks cables. The issue is pivotal. Put simply, the price of oil -- the price you are paying at the pump, indeed the cost of everything in your home -- is wholly determined by what oil traders think Saudi reserves and production capability really are. As an example, oil plunged yesterday to its lowest price of the year -- $87.87 a barrel -- when Saudi Arabian Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi suggested that the kingdom will put new oil supplies on the market to compensate for any uptick in global demand. The thing is, the Saudis are highly secretive about these figures -- unlike almost every important petrostate on Earth outside the Middle East, the Saudis will not permit their oil fields to be independently audited. One might wonder why that would be the case, and the late Matt Simmons, for example, made much hay suggesting that the reason is that the Saudis simply don't have as much oil as they claim." (ForeignPolicy)


"There were manic attempts at the Paley Center to keep Bill Clinton and Al Gore apart yesterday. Sources tell us staff were determined to avoid any possible tense moments as the former White House partners arrived for separate events. Gore was there for his Current TV in the afternoon, while Clinton was expected last night for a book signing for 'Walk in My Shoes' by former UN Ambassador Andrew Young. But despite the efforts, the once-warring pair greeted each other warmly and 'spoke in the lobby about kids and grandkids,' said a source. Reps for Clinton and Gore didn't get back to us." (PageSix)


"Prince was having a grand old time at Madison Square Garden Monday, summing up his five-show 'Welcome 2 America' purple reign there, crowing: 'I'm so bad I can't sleep with myself.' That final installment of the tour was a thrilling 2½-hour sampling of funk jams, his classic gems and well-picked covers. In all, there were 26 songs, with a concert finale of four separate encores. Nobody seemed to feel the need to use their seats, as the 52-year-old funkster whipped the sold-out house into a dance frenzy purely on the power of his music and the gravitational pull of his personality ... Prince, wrapped in a gold lamé tunic and matching bell-bottoms, didn't break a sweat as he danced and dashed around his stage, set up at the center of the arena. 'I need a dance partner. Who wants to dance?' Prince quizzed the crowd. Prince pulled a middle-age woman who introduced herself as Paula onto the stage. Paula did fine. The singer then pulled reality star Kim Kardashian onstage, but she didn't move her famous backside well enough and was dismissed harshly. 'Get off the stage,' he barked. A young man desperately volunteered, but was also let down hard: 'Oh no, brother, I can't dance with you.'" (Dan Aquilante)



"Fashion Week got off to a champagne-filled start last night at the launch of B Brian Atwood (the shoe designer's new, reasonably-priced shoe line) at West Village restaurant The Lion. The designer, responsible for bringing the likes of Kate Hudson and Victoria Beckham to colorful, sky-scraper-tall heights, has kept things fun and beautiful with his new, much more affordable line (the shoes go for $100-$600, as opposed to the usual $600-$800). As for the crowd, it was a people-watching visual feast, with lots of fur hats and a 'you should know me because I am wearing a sequined veil' types. Actual bold-faced names in attendance included model Hilary Rhoda, Tinsley Mortimer, Rose McGowan, Rose McGowan, Rachel Roy, Nate Berkus, Hamish Bowles and Lorenzo Martone. I questioned my sexuality for a second or two while awkwardly staring at the stunning Molly Sims (those eyes!) and Rachel Roy (that smile!), while happily humming along as DJs Alexandra Richards and Nick Cohen blasted a little Blondie." (Alex Catarinela/ Paper)


"Wednesday lunchtime at Michael’s. The list: Kathy Lacey and friends; the Jets’ MVP Matt Higgins along with their COO Jeff Wilpon. When they left Harvey Weinstein (The King’s Speech) with daughter and friend. In the corner, Evelyn Lauder and guest; next door producer Jean Doumanian and friend. Across the way, Da Boyz of Michael’s, Dr. Gerry Imber, Jerry Della Femina, Jeff Greenfield and Andy Bergman. Nearby, Joe Califano, who is celebrating a Big One along with his annual CASA benefit in May with attorney Morton Pierce. Also Judy Price and Sarah Wolfe, both just back from their apartments in Paris; Randy Jones with Diane Clehane. " (NYSocialDiary)


"Mark Madoff's widow, Stephanie, reportedly turned Ruth Madoff away from her son's private memorial service, forcing the 'first lady of fraud' to sit shivah alone. A friend of the family said, 'She told me, 'At night, it gets to me — the shame, the disgrace, all the stuff that killed Mark.' Ruth, who flew to Greenwich, Connecticut, after Mark's suicide last December, has tried to evade scrutiny in Florida, dying her hair red and living under her maiden name. According to People magazine, the source of the rift between Ruth and her sons, besides picking Bernie Madoff as their father, stems from an incident that happened in 2009. When the house of Ponzi cards collapsed, Mark and his brother, Andrew, forced Ruth to decide between them or her husband." (NYMag)

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