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Saturday, November 03, 2012

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres

"If the 2012 election were simply about the unemployment rate, Mitt Romney would be crushing President Barack Obama in this economically ravaged state. Yet politicians from both parties acknowledge that Obama is a solid favorite to carry Nevada on Tuesday – for reasons that illuminate not only how the president may win reelection Tuesday, but also why an Obama victory could offer a Democratic electoral template for decades to come. Obama is likely to get blown out among white voters on Election Day, narrowly lose independents nationwide and may yet still win, based on historic margins among groups that often lean Democratic, but don’t necessarily vote at high rates: Latinos, African-Americans, young people and unmarried women. Obama’s campaign message reflects its faith in demographic and social destiny: the president has campaigned hard on immigration reform and national surveys show him leading Romney by 40 to 50 points among Latinos. Democrats have pummeled Republicans for their opposition to abortion rights and funding for Planned Parenthood, running up their support among women. On the stump, Obama touts accomplishments that appeal to a younger, socially liberal age group, such as repealing the 'Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell' ban on gays in the military." (Politico)

"Uptown has become the new downtown, with the posh Mark and Carlyle hotels maintaining their hot-spot status this week for party people determined to kick up their heels in the aftermath of Sandy. At the Mark on Thursday, guests included Anna Wintour, Marc Jacobs and designers Thom Browne and Nicole Miller. “It was like a fashion event in the restaurant,' said a spy. Also spotted at the hotel: Naomi Watts, Liev Schreiber, Alan Cumming, Carla Gugino, Daniel Benedict and Andrew Saffir. 'Everyone was talking survival stories over cocktails — mainly about the mad scramble for uptown hotel rooms just before the storm hit and after the power went out,' a guest told us. Meanwhile, at the packed Carlyle, designer Johan Lindeberg was seen busting out dance moves. 'He was waving his hands in the air and swaying to the bar’s piano player as if it was a rock band,' says a witness, who also spotted designer Prabal Gurung and a guest dressed in a cat costume, perhaps stranded there after Halloween." (PageSix)

"Three states form the base of Democratic political power in the United States: California, New York and Illinois. All three states are locked in an accelerating economic, demographic and social decline; all three hope that they can stave off looming disaster at home by exporting the policies that have ruined them to the rest of the country. Mary Williams Walsh, a talented reporter who is doing much to sustain the luster of the New York Times brand these days, has a must-read piece on the mess that is Illinois, and it is a compelling description of the misery and ruin that well-intentioned liberals combined with aggressive public sector labor unions inflict on the poor they ostensibly want to serve. Reporting on a bipartisan task force report on Illinois’ grotesquely mismanaged finances, Walsh tells it like it is ... This of course is President Obama’s home state; one wishes that he spent more time on the campaign trail describing his horror and remorse at what decades of bad government have done. Apparently, the subject holds no interest for him: no lessons to be learned here about where blue governance ultimately leads." (TheAmericanInterest)
"Naomi Campbell is flying in Diana Ross to perform at her billionaire boyfriend Vladimir Doronin’s 50th birthday celebrations in India. It is believed the model is paying Ross more than $500,000 to perform at the bash in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. Page Six exclusively revealed Campbell is throwing a two-day bash for his birthday on Wednesday. Guests expected — including Kate Moss and Giorgio Armani — will stay at the breathtaking Umaid Bhawan Palace, one of the last great palaces of India." (PageSix)

"I escaped into a book. 'My Life As A Mankiewicz,' by Tom Mankiewicz and Robert Crane. I first read about it on these pages in Liz Smith’s column. She’d been given a copy by her friend Suzanne Goodson and she devoured it. I called up Archivia the next day. They had it. I bought. It is the perfect book for a storm where there is nothing you can do (if you’re safe) but wait. I love this book, so I'm gonna gush about it. If you have a friend who loves movies, any age, any gender, any nationality, this is the book for them. If your friend is one of these guys or girls whose only real favorite channel is TCM, this is having your cake and eating it. I know, all that sugar is a bit much on the sound of it. But this is delicious. never knew Tom Mankiewicz although we were friends of friends, and so I was aware of him back in college when he was at Yale. I was especially aware of him out of personal interest because he was a Mankiewicz, son of Joe, the famous screenwriter and director, nephew of Herman, the famous screenwriter and (rapier) wit, and a child of Hollywood. Growing up in a small New England town with those childhood dreams of the Big Life, nothing could have seemed cooler. The kids who grew up in Hollywood, issue of the generation who wrote, produced, directed and acted in the movies of the Golden Age of American Cinema, grew up in the real land of Oz. To us outsiders, that is. One of the things that surprised me about Los Angeles, or Hollywood when I went to live out there, is that it is not a city in the New York sense. Nor is it a suburb. It is a small town in a big place." (NYSocialDiary)

"I went to judo practice and a giant crane collapsed next to the club, sending everyone fleeing ... The Northeast has been shut down for two days and it will take another two to open up. The stock market is closed—not a bad thing—as are all modes of transport. An uprooted tree crushed my poor maid’s house in Queens and she’s homeless. But let’s put some things in perspective ...Just before they shut down the bridge, I went to Norman Mailer’s house in Brooklyn, which is now inhabited by his son Michael. I got completely crocked and proceeded to the Boom Boom Room, the Bagel’s best nightclub. Once there, I chatted up a beautiful girl who seemed awfully friendly and nice. She asked me what I did and I told her I was a bodyguard to a movie producer, but she laughed and said I didn’t look like a bodyguard. We got on swimmingly as they say, and the night went by quickly. I have no idea how I got home, but the next day Michael called and congratulated me. 'She was very pretty,' he said. 'And she liked you a lot, wanted to see you again.' I asked him if he got her name. He laughed. 'Are you putting me on?' I had no idea what he was on about. 'You mean to tell me you didn’t know you were with Lindsay Lohan? Cut the BS.' Goes to show that one should never believe the tabloids. She was pretty as a picture and a very sweet girl, and I will see her again if Sandy doesn’t get me first." (Taki Theodoracopulos)

"LI: Hi, Val (Kilmer) VK: Hi, Lawrence. LI: It’s good to see you. VK: It’s good to see you, too. Thanks for coming out to Malibu.  LI: It’s beautiful here. I’m glad you talked me into it. VK: Sometimes, I wonder what I’m doing back in Los Angeles, but when you look out there… How can you complain when you see a whale cresting, matter-of-factly, as you make your breakfast? LI: That happens? VK: Yes! LI: So, what are you doing back in Los Angeles, and what do you mean by back? Where have you been? VK: Well, I was born here, in the Valley, and grew up here. But when I was supposed to be here full time as a working actor, I felt more comfortable… elsewhere. After 10 years in New York, I moved to New Mexico, which is where I’ve lived for the past 25 years. LI: You said something to me once that has stuck in my head, I’m paraphrasing: 'Live where you pray best.' VK: Yes, I believe that. I learned a long time ago that place matters to me, on many levels, and maybe more than it should, but it is generally counter-productive for me to resist it. And it’s really that simple: where do you pray best? Which is another way of saying: Where [a]can you trust your own thoughts and your own intentions? Everywhere, hopefully, but it isn’t always that easy. Sometimes, you have to help yourself along." (Originmagazine)

"I can remember exactly where I was when Sebastian Coe won gold at the 1984 Olympic Games. It was a hotel lobby in the city of Trabzon in eastern Turkey, and I was transfixed by the television behind the reception desk. In distant Los Angeles, the slight figure of Coe was streaking away from the field, becoming the only man ever to win the 1,500m at successive Olympics. Now, almost three decades later, I am sitting in a restaurant in Chelsea, waiting for Lord Coe, as he now is, to arrive for lunch. Most great athletes drop out of the public eye when their sporting careers come to an end. But Coe is once again a hero in Britain, after chairing the organising committee for the London Olympics. The games went far better than many Britons had dared hope – and Coe is basking in public approval. His memoirs are being published, just in time for the Christmas market. He has chosen to meet at a small Italian restaurant, just a block from Chelsea football club." (FT)

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