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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres


"With the end of the Gadhafi regime seemingly in sight, it is an opportune time to step back and revisit one of the themes we discussed at the beginning of the crisis: What comes after the Gadhafi regime?
As the experiences of recent years in Iraq and Afghanistan have vividly illustrated, it is far easier to depose a regime than it is to govern a country. It has also proved to be very difficult to build a stable government from the remnants of a long-established dictatorial regime. History is replete with examples of coalition fronts that united to overthrow an oppressive regime but then splintered and fell into internal fighting once the regime they fought against was toppled. In some cases, the power struggle resulted in a civil war more brutal than the one that brought down the regime. In other cases, this factional strife resulted in anarchy that lasted for years as the iron fist that kept ethnic and sectarian tensions in check was suddenly removed, allowing those issues to re-emerge. As Libya enters this critical juncture and the National Transitional Council (NTC) transitions from breaking things to building things and running a country, there will be important fault lines to watch in order to envision what Libya will become." (STRATFOR)


"In 1996, the teenage son of a prominent political figure in Washington, D.C., got suspended from his tony prep school. Not wanting to see himself, his family or his boss embarrassed by his son’s actions, the father scrambled to keep the incident out of the news. One of the calls he made was to the chief executive of the parent company of a local television station that was planning on running a story. The owner of the TV station assured the politician that he'd have the story killed as a favor from one father to another. Behind-the-scenes favors between the rich and powerful is nothing new. In this case though, the father in question was Vice President Al Gore, whose son Albert III had gotten suspended from St. Albans. The owner of the television station was media mogul Rupert Murdoch, chairman and chief executive of News Corp. Spokespeople for both News Corp. and Gore declined to comment on the story, which was confirmed by three former News Corp. executives with direct knowledge of the matter. Although there is no evidence of any quid pro quos for Murdoch’s willingness to quash a negative story about Gore’s son, the personal favor for the vice president couldn’t hurt." (LATimes)


"Larry David has found love on the set of 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' with actress Amy Landecker, who appeared as 'Jane' on an episode called 'The Bi-sexual' last Sunday. A source tells Page Six their romance “sparked on set' when the episode was filmed six months ago. Since then, they have been spotted out and about together in both New York and Los Angeles. Landecker is known for her role as 'Mrs. Samsky' in the 2009 flick, 'A Serious Man.' Before she and David clicked, there were rumors that the caustic comic was connected to alluring Eva Mendes, which he has denied. HBO had no comment on the talent’s personal lives." (PageSix)


"Bright, sunny, 79 degrees, low to no humidity and a soft steady breeze. In our ongoing retrospective during these last days leading up to the end of summer, we had intended to run today’s piece on yesterday but was pre-empted by the news of Casey Ribicoff’s passing. Coincidentally, today’s, almost yesterday’s, Diary entry was also about the final departure of another fashionable figure, CZ Guest, who died in November 2003. Sleek, chic, swank, blonde on blonde; she was one of Truman Capote’s 'Swans,' and lo, the longest surviving one. Born Lucy Douglas Cochrane, daughter of a Boston banker, a Proper Bostonian. When she was in her early 20s, the great Mexican muralist Diego Rivera painted a long horizontal nude of her which he was said to have hung upon a wall over a bar in Mexico City. When she was 24, the lithesome and horsey girl from Back Bay got herself a job as a showgirl in a revival of the Ziegfeld Follies on Broadway. Probably because she was as beautiful as a movie star, 20th Century-Fox signed her to a contract. But the movies weren’t big enough: the world was to be her stage." (NYSocialDiary)


"She was one of the most elegant women. A size zero. Loved Ralph Rucci clothes. A great beauty—coal-black hair, bright-red lips. But one of the great marriages, to Abe Ribicoff: one of the great love affairs. She never wanted anyone after that, except for friends. A wonderful friend—she took care of Bill Blass when he was ill, took him to every doctor’s appointment. She took care of Dominick Dunne when he was ill . . . she was the most wonderful, loyal, devoted friend. She died of lung cancer. She knew it—I mean, when it was diagnosed, it was inoperable. I never heard her complain. I never heard her say, 'Why me?' I never saw her cry. And thank God she died without pain, with her very devoted son and daughter-in-law by her side—one on each side." (Barbara Walters on Casey Ribicoff/ VanityFair)


"The majority of voters in New Jersey say President Obama does not deserve a second term, according to a new Rutgers poll. Only 43 percent of New Jersey voters in the poll said Obama deserves to be reelected, while 47 percent said he deserves to be voted out of office. Those findings are a troubling sign for Obama, since New Jersey has traditionally been a stronghold for Democrats. In an earlier Rutgers poll taken in February, only 39 percent of New Jersey voters said he did not deserve reelection.  The poll comes on the heels of a Quinnipiac poll last week that showed New Jersey voters disapprove of Obama’s job performance by a 52 percent to 44 percent margin, the president's lowest score ever in the state." (TheHill)


"But back to Gstaad and the coming fight to the death. Europe has 2.9 million millionaires, while North America has 3.1 million of the same species. Asian  (millionaires) have reached 3 million, and at times it feels as if all of the above descend upon this village during the third week of August. Among the nine million is one German woman married to a billionaire who has decided to buy the whole of Gstaad—and I mean the whole kit and kaboodle, as they say in Kansas. Her husband has a couple of ex-wives and children with his exes, so the little lady has decided to ensure her future by having the old boy buy her Gstaad. (The old man is not feeling his best.) Some of us old Gstaad hands have tried to poison the bitch, but to no avail. She has Libyan food-tasters and such." (Taki)

1 comment:

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