blog advertising is good for you

Friday, August 22, 2014

Media-Whore D'oeuvres






"I haven’t run an item on one of my longtime running topics, the comparison of Barack Obama and George W. Bush’s approval ratings, because it got boring for a while, with Obama pulling firmly ahead. Well, it’s time for an update, because it’s interesting again -- probably (although of course we can’t know for sure) for the last time. Here’s the story: After a long stretch in which Bush and Obama were essentially tied for the period of May in their fourth years in office (2004, 2012) through February in their sixth years (2006, 2014), Obama finally pulled ahead of Bush, peaking -- at least according to Gallup -- at close to a 15-point approval gap. Not, to be sure, because Obama was improving; the big movement was Bush’s approval rating tanking in 2006. However, Bush had one last rally remaining. An Aug. 18-20 survey put him at 42 percent approval; it was followed (Sept. 7-10) by a reading at 39, and then one (Sept. 15-17) at 44 percent approval. That was Bush’s last Gallup poll rating over 40; after that, he slipped and pretty much continued slipping, eventually spending most of 2008 below 30 percent. What about Obama? He’s at 43 percent today in the Gallup tracker, as well as in the Pollster estimate. The trend is pretty much as flat as it can be. According to Pollster’s main chart, Obama is exactly where he was back in October, and he hasn’t moved as much as a full percentage point in either direction since. If that estimate (using Pollster’s regular setting) is correct, Obama is on a very slight downhill slope right now and has been since mid-April; however, using Pollster’s 'less smoothing' option, which is more sensitive to recent changes, Obama’s spring slump ended a month ago, and, if anything, he’s now trending slightly up. None of which is really worth fighting about; it’s easiest just to say that he’s been flat for almost a year now. Of course, there’s no way at all to predict what comes next. I’d say it’s highly unlikely that Obama’s approval ratings will deteriorate in his last two years the way Bush’s did, unless events (the economy, scandals, trouble abroad) change for the worse." (BloombergView)











Nicky Hilton celebrates engagement to James Rothschild




"Nicky Hilton celebrated her engagement to British banking heir James Rothschild at the Hilton family’s annual summer party in the Hamptons. Nicky was seen showing off her stunning diamond ring at her parents Rick and Kathy Hilton’s soiree at their home in Southampton Thursday night.
Rothschild proposed to Nicky last weekend during a boat trip on Italy’s Lake Como after he made a secret trip from England to the US to ask her parents for her hand in marriage. James and Nicky met at Lake Como, when both were guests at Petra Ecclestone’s wedding to James Stunt, and began dating in 2011. Those congratulating Nicky at the party included David Koch, Debbie Bancroft, Robert Zimmerman, Jay McInerney and Anne Hearst, Princess Yasmin Aga Khan and Bettina Zilkha. Meanwhile, much of the talk was over where the wedding will be. The Rothschilds own French estate Château Lafite, while the Hiltons have properties in the Hamptons and LA." (p6)

















"Gstaad—In this freewheeling Swiss village of the 1950s, the unconventional was the norm, monumental drinking commonplace, but the manners of the players were always impeccable. Yes, there were ladies of lower-class parentage and of a dubious past, but they covered it up with a grand manner and an affected aristocratic confidence they had learned through experience. That’s how things were back then; the slags that pass for celebrities today would not have lasted a minute. Some might think it was snobby, but it was nothing of the kind. One just had to act in a certain manner and that is all. Everyone knew where everyone else came from, so it wasn’t even a pretense. It was just a disciplined way of living that had nothing to do with whether one lived within or outside the rules. Men remained married whether they had mistresses or not, as did women even if they took lovers. Divorce was as much of a no-no as swearing in public or calling a lady of easy virtue a tart.
Am I being too idealistic about a period that was so long ago? Of course I am, but then one always remembers the good and tends to forget the bad. Aged twenty-two or even younger I hung out at the Palace Hotel’s grill every night. That’s where it all took place. There was a bar and a tiny dance area, and a large dining room and that was that. There was no nightclub, and the music was soft and only for dancing, and dancing up close, that is. Which means the Palace grill was the perfect place to pick up women. One such lady and I hooked up back in 1958 for a very brief and innocent romance. And now I’ll come to the present. Maya Schoenburg, ex-Flick, has the same birthday as Napoleon, August 15, so we all gathered at Mick Flick’s chalet for a party. Mick and Maya have remained close because they have three children together and because both are extremely nice and civilized. The party was all Flicks and Schoenburgs with some very young members of the latter family." (Taki)

















"First things first. The day before Brian Williams and Seth Meyers met for lunch at the Sea Grill restaurant in Rockefeller Center, Mr. Meyers’s publicist had staked out his seat. You see, Mr. Meyers, 40, the host of NBC’s 'Late Night with Seth Meyers,' a former anchor of Weekend Update on 'Saturday Night Live' and the host of the Emmy Awards this year (to be broadcast on Monday), likes to be photographed from the left. So, it was mildly alarming when the publicist for Mr. Williams, 55, the anchor and managing editor of 'NBC Nightly News' and a winner of 14 Emmy Awards, appeared at the restaurant, moments before the men were to meet, to announce her boss’s seating preference. Fortunately, Mr. Williams wanted to be photographed from the right. When the men arrived, they took their appropriate places, and each profile got its due. 'I would have given up the seat in a tie,' Mr. Meyers said. 'My bad side looks better than Brian’s bad side. And I need to give him every advantage.'" (NYT)










      

"In news that is sure to stir hearts across the country, Goldman Sachs has decided to give a $15,000 annual raise to next year's class of analysts (junior bankers typically just out of college, usually about 22 to 24 years old) as part of an effort to retain and attract top-level talent. It's an overdue move, and not all that surprising. Life as a young banker on Wall Street is a fairly miserable experience, and many young bankers are understandably fleeing the cramped bullpens of Manhattan for the free snacks and treadmill desks of San Francisco. Paying bankers more is one way to fight that attrition. But it's not going to solve the biggest problem Goldman has. To understand why not, you should know that there is a junior Goldman Sachs analyst archetype — call that type the Renaissance Kid. This kid worked hard in high school, got into Harvard/Yale/Princeton/Wharton, excelled in class while racking up a slate of impressive extracurriculars, majored in a social science or a hard humanity, and interned at a bank during the summer after sophomore or junior year.
The Renaissance Kids typically have their pick of investment banks, and what makes them so attractive to Wall Street — aside from their credentials, which look good on a pitch book — is that they're interesting. They're not carbon-copy Alex P. Keatons. They read books, can wax eloquent on nonfinancial matters, and are good at male small-talk (which female Renaissance Kids also excel at). Executives look them over and imagine them schmoozing clients, passing the airport test, and eventually taking over for them at the top of the firm. Goldman Sachs is especially desirous of Renaissance Kids, because it's always fancied itself the thinking man's investment bank. ('I think you also have to be a complete person. You have to be interesting,' Lloyd Blankfein told the bank's interns last year.) But because Goldman wants them, everyone else does, too." (NYMag)





Shirley Lord, Leila Heller, and Ene Greenfield.




"This is kind of our 'vacation' time but both JH and I have found that as the city never sleeps, so it is with the NYSD. Wednesday night I went down to the Leila Heller Gallery on 568 West 25th Street on the corner of 11th Avenue. I rarely go down to that part of town although I’m in the minority among those I know. That is in the heart of art gallery land in Manhattan, and right next door to the city’s newest and maybe biggest tourist attraction park, the High Line. Many of my friends and acquaintances are involved in the New York art world either as artists, collectors, gallerists and/or staffers. It’s a dynamic industry in New York ...Leila was one of the first people I met when I came back from Los Angeles in the early 90s. She was a young mother then. I think she told me she had an art gallery. But it could be that there was a few years when she focused on her two sons growing up. They’ve grown up. She’s been (back) in business for quite a few years. She had a gallery up on the Upper East Side. Then she moved to a larger space. She now has a gallery on East 57th Street where I visited the Portrait Show that Beth DeWoody curated. But her main gallery has been this one on 25th and 11th.This was a Pop Up Show for Peter Heywood. It runs through Saturday, August 23. I’ve known Peter for sometime. He’s an Englishman who also has an olive orchard in Sicily with his twin brother. Shirley Lord is a lifelong friend of Peter’s brother. But it was only several years ago, however, that she met Peter ... In the mix: Gil Shiva and Faye Wattleton, Boaz Mazor, Police Commissioner Bill Bratton and Rikki Bratton, Denise and David (“The Sopranos”) Chase, Donald Marron, Nick Gage, Pat and John Rosenwald, Anna and Bill Mann, Audrey and Seymour Topping, Carole and Philippe de Louvrier, art curator Diana Burroughs with Greg Kelly (son of Ray and Veronica) of Fox Good Morning, David Monn, Departures e-i-c Richard David Story and Jennifer Story, Linda Mason, the Alan Aldas" (NYSD)





"The most strategic way for Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes — who has just fended off Rupert Murdoch's efforts to buy his company — to keep Time Warner independent is to show he's not a seller by becoming a buyer. At the end of the day in the media business, you're one or the other.
But that's a problem for Bewkes because temperamentally, rationally and, in a sense, brilliantly, he's a dedicated streamliner and off-loader. He's never pretended otherwise. Over the years, Bewkes — previously the longtime head of HBO, the jewel in the Time Warner crown — has been openly derisive about the ungainly beast that Time Warner became when it piled on acquisitions, depressing its shares and its employees' options. Where moguls amass assets, Bewkes' very unmogul-like credo as CEO has been to build shareholder value. That has meant jettisoning hard-to-manage or low-performing properties like print (Time Inc.), cable systems (Time Warner Cable), music (Warner Music) and digital (AOL) and, having learned from his HBO experience, focusing on the high and reliable returns of cable programming. Even now, he's not saying he wants to not sell Time Warner, just not yet. Maybe three years more, when he'll be 65 and ready to retire. (Bewkes is going through a divorce — not the best time for the big payout he'll receive in a sale.) The problem here is that sellers can't always pick their moment. It's not the easiest case to make: a willingness to sell the company for, say, a speculative $100 billion in a few years time — when all sorts of dire things can happen to undermine expectations — versus a reluctance to sell now for Murdoch's $80 billion to $90 billion in the hand." (Michael wolff)

No comments: