blog advertising is good for you

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres


"Now that (Samantha) Power has returned to the administration as (pending Senate confirmation) the U.N. ambassador, it’s her role as a former journalist that explains much of the excitement that has greeted her appointment in the press. Although America’s man (or woman) in Turtle Bay has often been an intellectual—from Arthur Goldberg to Daniel Patrick Moynihan to Jeane Kirkpatrick—we’ve never had an intellectual quite like Power, one whose dazzling first career was as a crusading, bearing-witness writer determined to make America live up to its ideals. From the moment in 1993, when, fresh from Yale, she arrived in the Balkans to cover the conflict as a stringer for the Boston Globe, Power has been a sui generis figure in journalism. 'She was a force of nature,' recalls Barbara Demick, who was in Sarajevo for the Philadelphia Inquirer and is now the Beijing bureau chief for the Los Angeles Times. Power spoke Bosnian. She harangued her editors for more column inches to describe the latest atrocity. The New York Times’ Roger Cohen remembers the night he lost a vodka-­drinking contest to a Russian U.N. official and wound up passed out in the street, only to have Power carry him back to the Sarajevo Holiday Inn. More than anything, it was what Cohen calls the 'fierce moral indignation' of Power’s war coverage that brought her acclaim. She seemed destined for a storied career as a foreign correspondent, but instead she returned to the States to attend Harvard Law, then set up a human-rights center at the university. This provided her a perch to be even more vivid—and effective—with her writing. She contributed long, deeply reported articles on topics such as Rwanda and Darfur for publications like The Atlantic and The New Yorker. In 2002, she published her seminal book on genocide and American inaction, A Problem From Hell, which won the Pulitzer Prize. Although the book documented the moral failures of those in authority, it also celebrated the voices of the few officials who did try to prevent genocide. It was a thrilling though unlikely fantasy to imagine Power someday becoming one of them. And then she was." (NYMag)


"Rupert Murdoch’s decision to divorce Wendi Deng Murdoch makes official the long-rumored breakdown of their relationship. But it was not always that way. Years ago, when I was invited to visit their imposing loft apartment, I was struck by the atmosphere of domestic bliss that the titanically powerful couple had created. I was meeting Rupert’s daughter, Elisabeth Murdoch, head of the UK-based production company Shine. We were discussing a possible television adaptation of Chic Happens, a fashion gossip column I was co-writing at the time with Horacio Silva, who spent ten years at the New York Times’ T magazine. Arriving at the Prince Street address, I realized with alarm that we didn’t know the Murdochs’ apartment number. 'Just hit the top buzzer,' Horacio suggested and…well, duh. Ms. Murdoch was slightly surprised when we ascended to her father’s triplex penthouse in the freight elevator. In my nervousness, I had assumed the cage-doored contraption in the lobby was a charming nod to the bohemian-billionaire SoHo vibe? But no, we had just taken the wrong elevator. The loft was warm and blended Australian and Chinese d├ęcor. Murdoch pere renounced his native citizenship in 1985, but his birth country dominated the space, from oil paintings of outback scenes to shelves of Australian-themed books. Even the muted color scheme seemed to be drawn from the dun hues of the parched Australian countryside. Striking Chinese jade sculptures popped against this backdrop of gray and brown. A fold-up stroller, stowed under the baby grand piano, added another homey touch. The Murdochs’ daughter, Grace, was barely one at the time, and in the guest bathroom was a gag New York Post cover of Rupert holding the baby with a headline implying he’d kidnapped her." (Ben Widdicombe)


"The New York Times reported yesterday that Anthony Marshall, the son and only child of the late Brooke Astor will be surrendering himself to prison this week to serve a term of one to three years. Mr. Marshall, who was 89 last month, will not be — according to the Times — the only old guy in the prison. That’s about as sympathetic as the paper of record could be toward the man. The article pointed out that he will get no special treatment. That’s good, because besides being unable to stand up or walk for any prolonged (five minutes) period of time, he should be comfortable and be able to 'learn the lessons of justice' for the crimes he was accused of by his mother’s devoted friends and supporters. This drama began more than sixty years ago when Vincent Astor was married to another woman — Minnie Cushing. Minnie who was wife number two, was famous in New York and some parts of the world as one of the Cushing Sisters, daughters of the great Dr. Harvey Cushing, America’s first neurosurgeon." (NYSocialDiary)



"The trouble was I windsurfed to Saudi Arabia. The one time I attempted this sport I grasped the standing part, and I could do a decent job of staying up and traveling in any direction the wind would take me, but despite a week of lessons I could not learn how to turn the thing around. This was 1986 and I was in Jordan at the time, a guest of the late King Hussein and his fourth wife, the cool tall blonde half American half Syrian Queen Noor. When I windsurfed to Saudi Arabia I was rescued by a flotilla of the King of Jordan’s servants who motored out and gathered me up and into their boat and lashed my sailing device off the stern, back to the Palace on the Gulf of Aqaba. One day the King took me, and some other guests, in his power boat. He said it was the big brother to a cigarette. It sure went fast. All of us with crazy hair zagging to the side as we clung to padded handles and smiled at each other and felt the chattering of teeth from the force.Then we slowed and bobbed nearby a promontory of crags with some sort of structure atop it. 'Now we are in Egypt,' The King told us, and then he revved the power boat and we zoomed away, back to Jordan, keeping wide of Israeli waters and an eye out for submarines." (Christina Oxenberg)





No comments: