Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Who Will Replace Dan Rather?

The media parlor game du jour -- who will replace Dan Rather? Grandfatherly Bob Schieffer says, Tim Russert, but, NBC would never let him go. Sort of like Bob Schiefer clinging to the unwatchable ratings-challenged Face The Nation.

Here are some of our unconventionalchoices:

Andrea Thompson (hott former CNN Headline News anchor, sophisticated, smart)

Former Senator Fred Thomson (red states love him (and, like Ben Stein, so do blue), gravitas, jack-of-all-trades, down with Harrison Ford, Law and Order actor)

Bryant Gumbel (grit and gravitas, a fighter, arrogant, intelligent, still has untapped news division mileage left, a melancholy waste on the golf courses, and, worse, the Media Siberia known as HBO Sports *The Corsair quietly weeps in his glass of Armagnac* )

Cokie Roberts (gravitas, a cool matronly presence whose image speaks of Puritain restraint, the amazing ability to speak with minimal lip movement, Ultimate DC insider)

Diane Sawyer (homey, comfortable presence, former boss Dick Nixon admired her hott legs, Master at "The Get")

Laurie Dhue (Fox TV anchor, just thought I'd toss this one in; Pros: Porny, lascivious lips; Cons: Porny looks may not play well in times of national emergency)

Abigal Vona (her deep grasp of international politics and domestic affairs is peerless, Have you ever heard her speak on Herodotus? You must. *The Corsair smiles, draws deeply on Montecristo*)

Of course Russert gets it, although he is an organization man who loves NBC, The Catholic Church and the Buffalo Bills -- not necesarily in that order -- he acnnot turn it down. There will be tears in the farewell, and then Chris Matthews takes over Meet The Press.
Boring Anchor Brian Williams Bitchslaps Bloggers

Bland, boring, antiseptic white bread anchor-elect Brian Williams (Averted Gaze), that helmet haired Washingtonian sissy, had some choice words -- dare I prithee to say (air quotes) "zingers" -- for bloggers, words that stung like a bitchslap delivered with ... particular brio (The Corsair rubs his cheek, ruefully) and more than a touch of dash. According to CBS MarketWatch:

"Williams, 45, is capable of showing good humor and a dry wit in public. When Time magazine held a lunch to discuss the candidates for its Person of the Year issue, he exposed a side of his personality that is seldom seen on the air.

"When a fellow panelist mentioned that bloggers had a big impact on the reporting on Election Day, Williams waved that point away by quipping that the self-styled journalists are 'on an equal footing with someone in a bathroom with a modem.'"

A touch, a touch, I do confess, I fear I breathe my last. Oh, the dry wit was fairly chaffing off that bon mot. Saucy, Brian Williams ... (The Corsair turns to face the TelePrompter, giving the cameras a full three quarter head shot, moistens his lips, bats his eylashes, whispers, faintly, into the hot mic:) ... "Saucy."


Mating Rituals of the Rich and Famous

Page Six examines the complex mating rituals and territorial display between alpha males in competition over eligible nubile alpha females:

IT looks like David Katzenberg just can't let go. The son of DreamWorks honcho Jeffrey Katzenberg still has the hots for his long lost love, Mary-Kate Olsen � the anorexic half of the Olsen duo who dumped him in September. David, who goes to school in Boston, has come to New York to woo Olsen in the past, and was hoping to run into her last weekend in Los Angeles. But he bumped into her new love, Ali Fatourechi, instead. Our spy says: 'They were both at [L.A. eatery] Toast, sitting across from each other at separate tables. They were staring each other down � it was really uncomfortable.'"

"CHALLENGE RITUALS BETWEEN TERRITORIAL WILDEBEAST MALES May be brief or last up to 10 minutes, at low or high intensity, involve just a few or tip to 30 different behavior patterns, including all the different self-advertising, marking, and aggressive (but no submissive) displays, social contact, displacement activities, and fighting ... angle-horn signals intent to turn and face adversary."

I'm just saying ...
A Little of The Old In and Out

In: Plum and Lucy Sykes. According to Fashionweekdaily:

"Twins Plum and Lucy Sykes will celebrate their birthdays with an invite-only bash at Bungalow 8 this Saturday"

Okay, like (The Corsair gives a fake laugh), this is hugely embarrassing for everyone involved(Pregnant Pause), but, Lucy baby, The Corsair didn't get his invite. Oversight? We think so. It must have been lost in the mail. Plum, honey (The Corsair makes the universal cell phone sign), have your people get in touch with my people so we can make this happen.

Out: Sundance. Does Sundance suck ass? Is the term "Sundance" Navajo for "Jumping the Shark"? The bloggers as LA.com appear have a point when they write, earnestly:

"Despite Robert Redford's annual claims that the fest hasn't gone too Hollywood, Sundance has just added a Industry Office to assist execs in corrupting ... connecting with filmmakers.

"UPDATE: The Daily News reports that festival veterans Naomi Watts, Laura Linney, Steve Buscemi and Patricia Clarkson star in some of the competition films. And this year Keanu Reeves will most likely clomp up and down Main Street in Park City."

Even Miramax started out with the best of intentions before being corrupted to The Dark Side of the Force and having their indie asses kicked by Fox SearchLight. We like the fact that Sundance is the only game in town for Native Americans hoping to get their views on screen, cause, let's be frank, if you are a Sioux with ambitions of cahiers du cinema, chances are you are getting your ass whipped on the reservation on a daily basis, and Rob Redford's there for you, but we're hoping, praying to The Great Invisible Spirit, that Redford's inclusion of world cinema this year supplies much needed oxygen to the wheezing, gasping, corrupted festival.

In: A Man Named Wilmer. Are you honestly telling me, The Corsair, connoisseur of gossip (The Corsair sips a glass of Armagnac and smokes a Montecristo), sultan of snark, that Wilmer Valederama -- that swarthy geek of uncertain ethnic origin who sports a falsetto onscreen -- that (Averted Gaze, the following word said with Ugandan disdain) "Fez" on That 70s Show, not only dated and dumped "The Lindsay", "The Freckled Goddess," "Her CopperTop Majesty (The Corsair crosses himself)," but he also dated overproduced only-after-I'm-married pop princess Mandy Moore?

A man named Wilmer pulled that off is what you're telling me? No way. That significant cultural artifact Star Magazine says to our doubting, skeptical heart -- waaay:

"In a high-school-esque maneuver after being dumped by beau Wilmer Valderrama, pals of Lindsay Lohan have begun a rumor that the That '70s Show star was cheating with Mandy Moore and Ashlee Simpson weeks before the couple split.

"'There's a rumor going around from people close to Lindsay that Wilmer's been cheating,' a source close to Lohan tells Star. Another source says minutes after Wilmer, 24, gave Lindsay, 18, the boot on Nov. 6, the Freaky Friday starlet was on the phone blasting the man she once loved.

"Star has learned the rumor mongering from Lohan's clique is simply not true. Mandy and Wilmer dated previously, a source close to Lindsay tells Star. 'But he never cheated on Lindsay with Mandy.' Mandy, 20, and Wilmer stayed pals after splitting in March 2001 and had coffee after he dumped Lindsay."

So, let's get the proper order of operations down, first he had Coffee, then he had Mandy ... or something to that effect.

Out: Don and Diedre Imus. That racist Don Imus is an asshole goes without saying. It is what precise species of asshole that will here and now deduce. Don Imus' low calibre brand of Western States humor escapes us entirely. Perhaps my lack of inebriation and my college degree immunize me against understanding what Imus does that compels Viacom into giving him millions and powerful Washingtonians to listen to him daily. And the fact that his Imus', Dierdre, is dingbat is a de facto truism.

According to TheSmokingGun (link via Gawker), combined, they make a formidable duo of stupid:

"A New York woman who briefly worked as a nanny for Don Imus has sued the radio host for wrongful termination, claiming she was canned for bringing a harmless cap gun and pocketknife with her during a trip last Thanksgiving to the family's sprawling New Mexico ranch. Nichole Mallette, 24, also claimed in her New York State Supreme Court lawsuit ... that she was defamed when Imus later announced on his program that he had been forced to 'disarm' his nanny, whom he labeled as dangerous and a 'terrorist.'

"In her complaint, filed yesterday by the lawyer who represented the woman who recently accused Bill O'Reilly of various improprieties, Mallette claimed that she brought the cap gun with her so that she and Imus's five-year-old son could 'play cowboys' at the 4000-acre ranch. As for the pocketknife, Mallette noted that the 1-1/2-inch item was never unsheathed from a leather harness affixed to her belt. In her lawsuit, Mallette alleged that she endured 'frenzied questioning' by Imus and his wife Deirdre, who woke her at 1 AM to grill her about the pocketknife and the cap gun, which Mallette said she did not use nor show to Imus's son. After Deirdre Imus told her, 'Pack your things, you're terminated,' Mallette was escorted off the property at 4:15 AM by a ranch employee and the radio host."

Mixed: Arnold. The Corsair is of two minds over Arnold, speaking of Terminating. Ananova reports:

"Arnold Schwarzenegger says sexual harassment lessons have cured him of inappropriate behaviour towards women.

"The Terminator star was hit by 16 'sex pest' claims while running for the governorship of California.

"Although he denied being a serial groper, Schwarzenegger admitted there was 'no smoke without fire' and started an anti-harassment course.

"'I learned my lesson,' he told Vanity Fair. 'I had several harassment lessons ... I know now what can be said and what can't be said. Now I would not even tell someone I like their outfit. It could go south.'"

Going south? Hmmm. Why does that sound unspeakably filthy when uttered with a Lower Austrian accent? Why does this sound almost like barnyard activity he's describing and not an earnest apologia? Why does it seem like another fellow Austrian could diagnose what Arnold just did?

In: Joan Collins is Bald. According to The Independent, the proto-Nicolette Sheridan, bitch goddess Kali-diva:

"Joan Collins is alleged to be completely bald.The 71-year-old star is said to have been hairless for a number of years but has kept the fact a secret by wearing a wig.

"American writer Molly Jong-Fast makes the sensational claim in her new autobiographical book, Sex Doctors In The Basement.

"Jong-Fast - whose mother, feminist author Erica Jong, is close friends with Collins - claims she has exposed the former Dynasty star's secret as revenge for taunting her about being overweight when she was just 13."

A Zipless Fuck You, so to speak, no?

Monday, November 29, 2004

Bill Maher Sex Suit

As you can imagine, a Bill Maher sex suit is an ugly thing to behold unfolding in the media. All that past-their-prime coitus being litigated and debated. The image of a spread eagle (Eew) Maher commingling his vast expanses of saggy untanned flesh with that sleazy "Coco (no, really, the copper wire Raggedy Anne hairdo-thingie really --Averted Gaze-- really 'rocks-our-world' so to speak)," who, quite frankly looks not unlike a very strung out Jet Magazine (or maybe Players Magazine, to be more accurate -- don't ask me how I know about that) centerfold, circa, oh, maybe 1978 (Keep on Truckin!), is disturbing to say the very least. And the less spoken of this unfortunate episode ...

Couldn't Bill get/hire a higher caliber of skank?


theSmokingGun "fills in the gaps," if you'll excuse the pun:

"Denying an ex-girlfriend's legal claim that he used racial slurs and assaulted her, comedian Bill Maher has fired back at the woman,"

-- And, are we sure this is actually a woman? I'm just saying ... you saw the picture. You know where I'm coming from.

" ... describing her as a would-be extortionist who launched a campaign to embarrass and humiliate the HBO star after the demise of the pair's ten-month relationship. In the below Los Angeles Superior Court filing, Maher--described as a 'confirmed bachelor, and a very public one at that'--alleges that Nancy Johnson fabricated claims that he physically and verbally abused her. In a $9 million palimony lawsuit, Johnson, a centerfold model and former flight attendant also known as Coco Johnsen,"

--Okay, your girlfriend, a grown woman, has an alias; what's was wrong with Maher's critical reasoning here? Hello? An alias is to criminal enterprise like a "triple name" -- i.e. John Wayne Gacy -- is to serial killing. Everyone knows that.

" ... claimed that Maher also promised to marry and have children with her, support her financially, and purchase a Beverly Hills home. Portraying himself as Johnson's 'latest victim,' the 48-year-old Maher contends that the woman's 'modus operandi' is to try and shake down former consorts. One of her prior 'unscrupulous schemes,' Maher alleged, involved a 1997 shakedown bid targeting a Miami socialite whom Johnson falsely accused of rape and kidnapping."

The Miami socialite was supposed to "babysit" her, but his girlfriend came home. Fellini couldn't have concocted a more convoluted plot. Here.

Livin La Vida Loca

A Little of The Old In and Out

Forgive the paucity and lack of quality of posts today, Generally I serve no post before their time, and I actually wanted to post much much more, but Blogger REALLY sucks today ... I mean, really, really sucks... it took me 20 minutes after each post to get it online and I don't have the time

I'm giving up, calling it an evening, pitching up my tent, and posting tomorrow.

In: Jamie Lee Curtis. We rather like Jamie Lee Curtis' (Lady Hayden-Guest, if you're nasty) looks, a woman being like a fine wine and all, but, according to FemaleFirst, she disagrees:
"Jamie Lee Curtis says she is quitting movies because she's too old and fat.

"The 'Halloween' star, who is the daughter of Hollywood legends Janet Leigh and Tony Curtis, says she's retiring from the big screen because she's 'a 46-year-old fat woman.'

"She said: 'I think I'll phase out acting. I know that the film business is incredibly cruel as you get older.

"'My age is an important factor. I am not aging well.'"

Out: George Michaels' Stalker. Love knows no bounds, like when that freaky dude who stalked Steven Spielberg and was found with, like, duct tape and handcuffs *The Corsair shudders*.

The Corsair doesn't have a stalker, and wouldn't want one except, well, maybe in the sense that it says that someone cares ... if, maybe, a little too much:

Anyhoo: George Michael, who, according to Ananova, has a little freak all his own that will not give up:

"George Michael's alleged stalker has been admitted to a mental hospital to undergo psychological tests.

"Lucy Nowak, 29, is being assessed by doctors to see if she is mentally fit to stand trial after she was arrested for a second time on suspicion of harassing the singer.

"The woman was out on bail after she was found breaking into George's Oxfordshire cottage. But she was arrested again when police caught her breaking a restraining order banning her from going within 100 metres of the cottage or George's North London home.

"... George said his hatred of fame has driven him to the brink of insanity and is now planning to become a recluse for the next ten years."

Maybe he's just not that into you ...
Sex Degrees of Paris Hilton

Gawker today gave us a brilliant idea. Today, she writes, re: the Most Excellent Gatecrasher that she "hooked up" with Colin Farrell, "It was inevitable: Paris Hilton hooks up with Colin Farrell; now everyone in Hollywood has fucked each other via no more than 3 degrees of separation."

Well, give us a hint and we'll go with it. Sure, one could just as easily do a "Sex Degrees of Mick Jagger, (this would be particularly effective in the Brazilian telemundo celebrity market)" or a "Sex Degrees with Rob Lowe," but manwhores like those two aren't as fun. Slabs of beef like that wouldn't even get us publicity. They'd probably just send me emails of congratulatory thanks, signing off with, "thanks, dude."

But "Sex Degrees with Paris Hilton," now, "that's hott!" That has legs to stand on. It's a sick and sexist ploy that's bound to get me some juice with the tabloids, and The Corsair is itching to get some more crack-like addictive boldface time.

The Rules of the Game are Simple: You must link someone -- anyone -- in Hollywood to Paris Hilton via some *alleged* sex act, within six ("sex", get it?) plays.

Let's start with Demi Moore, bionic woman( She is our bionic woman, a real life analog to the hyperadvancement in technology. She is bigger technology news than the iPod. One imagines, with tongue in cheek and a heart full of mirth, the conversation at that historic moment when the plastic surgeons conducted their Wierd Science on her:'We can rebuild her. We have the technology.We have the capability to make the world's first Bionic woman. Demi Moore will be that woman. Better than she was before. Thinner . . . bustier . . . tighter.')

Anyhoo: Demi "dated" Leo DiCaprio, *allegedly*, and Leo dated Rosario Dawson, and Rosario dated Colin Farrell ... which brings us back to ... Paris Hilton.

See, it's fun for all the family!

Let's try another one, only harder:

Matt Dillon. Dillon dated Carmeron Diaz, who dated Jared Leto, who dated ... that's right, true believers: Paris Hilton.

Now, go out and spread the word, my blogger minions!

Official "Sex Degrees of Paris Hilton Blog"

Being Flavio

Superhero Name: Flavio (One word)

Alias: Flavio Briatore

Secret Identity: His existence is unknown to the general populace of Earth, but his antics are well known to people who read this blog.

Super Powers: Oddly irresistible to Supermodels.

The Corsair is a little confused how a really shady looking piece of Eurotrash like Flavio Britore became so famous, fathered Heidi Klum's baby and drove Naomi Campbelll to all sorts of distraction like he did, but, here it is, served fresh via the 3AM Girls, Flavio Britore is a slab of beef -- allegedly:

"Supermodel Naomi Campbell reportedly stirred quite a row at a posh London restaurant when she was asked to pay the bill. The model who was dining at Cipriani eaterie with her boyfriend Usher refused to pay the bill, claiming that she shouldn't have to pay because the restaurant's owner Flavio Briatore was her ex boyfriend.

"'When Naomi was handed the bill, she looked furious. She was kicking off saying that she wasn't going to pay and that as a personal friend of Flavio, she shouldn't have to pay,' an onlooker was quoted by the Mirror as saying. 'In the end Flavio was called and he told staff to waive the bill. But there was anger that she'd got away with being so rude and not having to pay.'"

Because we all know Naomi is strapped for cash ...
Jordan's Crown Prince ... Dissed and Dismissed

Above: Smile even though you're crying ...

Sunday, before the royal court, and afterwards on Jordanian television, King Abdullah of Jordan psyched the mind of Prince Hamzah, dismissing his half-brother as crown prince and heir (Oops, I'm sorry ...), clearing the way for his 10 year old son, Prince Hussein, to succeed to the throne.

The Washington Times writes, "Sources close to the royal palace also speculated the king would name one of his other brothers as a provisional crown prince due to his son's age."

The Times of India chimed in on the ruckus:

"Sources close to the royal family said Abdullah, said to have been on bad terms with his stepmother, Noor, since her marriage to Hussein in 1978, was reluctant to name Hamzah as his heir apparent, but did so upon his father's dying request. Analysts agreed that it would be difficult to discover if there had been any personal problems between Abdullah and Hamzah that drove the monarch to retract on fulfilling his father's dying wish."

Quoth The Old Gray Lady:

"Hamza's mother is Queen Noor, the American-born former Lisa Halaby, who became Hussein's fourth wife in 1978. She had groomed her son as a future king but the premature death of her husband upset her plans, palace sources say."
According to Hello!Magazine, which follows titled royalty around like Scarlett Johannson, the Sir Emund Hillary of Social Climbing:

"Jordan's King Abdullah has relieved his half-brother, Prince Hamzah, of his title as crown prince. Speaking in a televised address on Sunday, Abdullah said the move would allow his sibling to play a more meaningful part in the country's political life. 'I chose you five years ago to be crown prince, rather than my other brothers who are older than you,' he said. 'Your presence in this symbolic post restricts your freedom and restricts our ability to assign you some responsibilities, as its symbolic nature bars you from shouldering some responsibilities you are capable of conducting in the best possible way.'"

The Corsair's Simultaneous Bullshit Cutting Translator(TM): "Your presence in this important post gets in the fucking way of my offspring, so why don't you go take this bag of loot and party with some Swiss hookers and leave the kingdom to my family."

Or something to that effect (a controlled belly-laugh, followed by a small closing cough of feigned detachment). Hello! continues:

"It is not the first time the issue of succession has provoked surprise in Jordan. Just days before his death in 1999, the previous monarch, King Hussein, unexpectedly withdrew the title of crown prince from his brother Hassan, granting it instead to Abdullah. Soon after acceding to the throne, the new ruler elevated Hamzah to the position of crown prince. It is well known that King Hussein had a special affection for Hamzah, whom he described as 'the delight of my eye'."

Angelina Jolie, apropos of nothing, is the "delight of The Corsair's eye" (and other unmentionable organs):

"(Hamzah), who is currently studying politics at an American university, has earned a reputation for his progressive views. In the past he has delivered speeches calling for reform in Muslim thinking, but the role of crown prince involves no political duties."

Who will be voted next off of Survivor: Jordan?

Scenes from the next episode of Jordanian Survivor(TM): Queen Noor attends her Princeton reunion (Lisa Hallaby '73) to deride the West on its materialism and how "liberating" it is to be the fourth wife of a quasi-corrupt monarch, then quickly limos to her private jet to hang with The Clintons ... King Abullah asks Condi urge Sharon withdraw Jewish settlements from Gaza ... and 10 year old Princelet Hussein reviews the new Spongebob Squarepants movie ...

Saturday, November 27, 2004

The Russian Bear Awaketh

"Economically, Kiev has little choice but to increase investment and trade ties with America and Europe; geographically, Ukraine's security inevitably will be linked to Russia."
Doug Bandow, Between West and East, The American Spectator

As the world waits and watches, tensions intensify heading towards a boiling point between, on the one hand, the tens of thousands of protesters camping out in Kiev under subzero temperatures -- many of whom, incidentally, have had pictures taken with the apparently sympathetic army -- and, on the other hand, the Prime Minister and forces of the Kremlin, who consider the Ukraine, "the linchpin in the new frontier of Russia-led Eurasian integration." The sluggish Russian bear arises from his period of hibernation in time to maul the "Orange Revolutionaries"?

The Russian Bear has made it clear that it will not have Ukraine joining the EU or NATO, they would much rather -- and they are growling the point rather aggressively -- that the Ukraine become a satellite in the orbit of some sort of amorphous neo-Russian empire, with Putin as Czar.

In point of fact, Russian anxiety over the West's pressuring of it to in turn pressure Iran to drop their nuclear ambitions coupled with their intransigence on the issue of the Ukraine has put bilateral relations between the America and Russia at a crossroads. Russia feels that it is on the wrong side of Iran, a traditional ally.

Further, bilateral relations between the Ukraine and the US are thorny -- for one, Ukraine has given permission to allied forces to use its air space to deliver humanitarian relief to Afghanistan, and, second, German and US transport planes have been using Ukrainian air space since the beginning of operation "Enduring Freedom" in Afghanistan. Our entanglements with the Ukraine has actually exacerbated Russia's change of heart of its current geopolitical position vis a vis Europe.

Cooperation between the Ukraine and the West over Enduring Freedom has heightened the existential anxiety that Russian hands feel at the widening sphere of western influence in their backyard coinciding with their geopolitical weakening. And we all know how territorial and grumpy bears can be when perceived threats get too close.

Add to the mix Colin Powell's somewhat undiplomatic (did this directive come from The President, or is this a rogue statement from a popular lame duck Secretary of State making waves for his successor, a Russia hand? We won't entertain the possibility that sour grapes played a factor?) questioning the legitimacy of the election (morally right, but certainly impolitic), going several degrees further than the measured response from the President.

Clearly this is a situation that can only be resolved by robust diplomacy. But how far will Russia go, especially with the full knowledge that the US is engaged in Iraq and Afghanistan and cannot possibly confront Russia, and the puny EU military (The Us has carried their water for decades)? Ought the Ukraine to be divided? The Russophile section of the country -- roughly 40 percent -- becomes a part of Russia and the Europhiles (Ukranian elites who are tied to economic engagement with the US and the EU) and Russophobic Ukranian nationalists -- roughly 60 percent combined -- to shed it's Russian ties and bask in the EU sphere of influence? Wishful thinking, of course, as there's no way Russia would ever allow for that pleasant and bloodless scenario to unfold, and yet, it appears to be the most wise course, creating precedent that would allow North Ossetia to do the same with Georgia (This time, in favor of Russians).

Voice of America describes the situation thusly:

"Ukrainian officials this week declared Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych the winner of Ukraine?s presidential election. They say he defeated opposition leader Viktor Yushchenko in the election last Sunday. Officials say Mister Yanukovych won forty-nine percent of the vote. They say Mister Yushchenko received forty-six percent.

"But on Thursday, Ukraine?s Supreme Court stopped the Central Elections Commission from officially publishing the election results. The Supreme Court has agreed to hear objections from Mister Yushchenko and his supporters on Monday. "

The always interesting Dick Morris has an insider's eye view (Morris was an unpaid, volunteer adviser to Viktor Yushchenko):

"... I have seen, firsthand, how Viktor Yanukovich, the Putin candidate backed by a coalition of the Russian Mafia, oil barons, former KGB officials and communists stole the election and thwarted the obvious will of the voters."

Tell us how you really feel, Dick.

"While the former Soviet Union was composed of many smaller nations, now independent, the key was the combination of Russia and Ukraine. Russia?s 145 million people and Ukraine?s 45 million are the core of what was the Soviet empire. Reuniting them has to be the primary goal of any aspiring Russian czar. But the Ukrainian people don?t want Russian domination."

Tibor Torbakov of the Eurasian Monitor wrote:

"The bulk of Russian analytic community seems to view the Ukrainian presidential race not as a primarily internal affair of Ukraine but rather as a major geopolitical tug-of-war between Russia and the West.

"Of all ten presidential hopefuls, the Kremlin regards the two frontrunners as polar opposites in terms of their strategic orientation. Ukraine's Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych, President Leonid Kuchma's heir apparent, is seen as the man who will best secure Russia's political and economic interests in the region, whereas Viktor Yushchenko, the leader of the oppositionist 'Our Ukraine' party, is perceived as dangerously pro-Western."

Morris continues:

"The result was obvious: Exit polls (more accurate in Ukraine than when our own TV networks do them) showed Yushchenko winning by more than 10 points. But the final results, announced by the government, which supported Yanukovich, showed a small margin in favor of the Russian-backed candidate. Putin regarded the contest as so important that he personally visited Ukraine in the weeks before the election to campaign for his candidate, a clear violation of the most elementary standards of independence and protocol. His former KGB henchmen ? and once and future communists ? combined with Russian organized-crime figures and oil barons to pump money into the race and to intimidate voters on the ground."

Matt Drudge has an interesting and -- quite frankly -- scary item, which pounds home the oily gangster element present in the way Moscow approaches Kiev politics:

"As Ukraine's popular pro-Western opposition leader claimed victory Tuesday in hotly contested presidential elections, the mystery surrounding an appearance-altering illness that twice prompted him to check into a Vienna hospital persisted.

"Yushchenko accused the Ukrainian authorities of poisoning him. His detractors suggested he'd eaten some bad sushi.

"Adding to the intrigue, the Austrian doctors who treated him have asked foreign experts to help determine if his symptoms may have been caused by toxins found in biological weapons.

"Medical experts said they may never know for sure what befell Yushchenko.

"But the illness, whatever it was, has dramatically changed his appearance since he first sought treatment at Vienna's private Rudolfinerhaus clinic on September 10.

"Known for his ruggedly handsome, almost movie star looks, Yushchenko's complexion is now pockmarked. His face is haggard, swollen and partially paralyzed. One eye often tears up."

Above: How Moscow tabled the "looks" issue in the Ukranian election.

"Doctors at Rudolfinerhaus declined to comment Tuesday. By the time Yushchenko checked out of the clinic last month after returning for follow-up treatment, physicians said they could neither prove nor rule out that he had been poisoned."
Paris Wants To Be Escorted By Hugh

Above: This man is not an ass ...

The Corsair has always thought that Paris Hilton had the tastes of an uncultivated suburban housewife (the blank smoke colored gaze staring up at us from the tabloids were a dead giveaway), but now her choice in men proves it once and for all. According to The Dish:

"Hotel heiress Paris Hilton has written a letter to British actor Hugh Grant asking him to 'look after her' when she visits the UK in early 2005.

"The reality TV star, 23, has a crush on older man Grant and is keen to be escorted by the 44-year-old Londoner.

"Hilton has had a 'thing' for him ever since she watched him in 2003 movie 'Love Actually.'"

Of course, Hugh already has a sugar mommy, and Jemmy, unlike Paris, does not suffer from a suburban colonial complex.
A Little of The Old In and Out

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Above: Trimspa, baby!

In: Painkillers. One of the Four Noble Truths of Buddhism is that Life is Suffering. Life is suffering insofar as a healthy body can get sick and die, our thoughts cannot be sustained, and sensations, emotions and consciousness are all impermanent. Yo, that's fucked up, yo, la condition humaine and shit. So (The Corsair throws up his hands in bewilderment) -- how does one cope with the existential drama?

According to that significant cultural artifact, The Star:

"Anna Nicole Smith's bizarre behavior at the the American Music Awards on Nov. 14 can be explained by her recent return to painkillers, says a source close to Smith. 'She never goes anywhere without a little purse she calls her magic bag,' the source reveals. 'She takes her happy pills-- and the result is just what America saw on television that night.'

"Smith, 36, certainly seemed disoriented at the AMAs. 'Like my body?' she slurred, running a finger along her cleavage and raising her hands in the air. The once-buxom blonde then blundered her introduction for rapper Kanye West, barely able to say his name before the band cut her off. 'She didn't smell of alcohol, so no one knew what was causing her to act the way she was,' a show insider told Star. 'Before she went onstage, she was rolling on the floor and slurring her words. When she came backstage again, she started mumbling incoherently about her obsession with Marilyn Monroe.'"

Out: Britney Spears and Kevy Federline. Do you remember your first "serious" romance in High School? Every moment seemed like a drama worthy of Shakespeare. No one else mattered, it was so like The Blue Lagoon (the first R-rated movie your parents let you watch), only your partner looked nothing like Brooke Shields' Emmilene or Christopher Atkins's Richard. That, and there are no drums beating from the forbidden side of the mountain.

Doesn't that thankfully long past spell of adolescence remind you -- eerily -- of this? (courtesy of The National Enquirer):

"From the moment (Britney) fell in love with Kevin, she wanted to have his baby (Editorial interjection: Eew). But Kevin told Britney he was reluctant to start a family immediately. He already had two children and his son was just born in July.

"Afraid of how Kevin might react, Britney kept (her pregnancy) a secret from him. She was bursting to tell him but she waited until just the right moment, in just the right setting, to let him in on her secret.' "

"Settled in on the romantic island of Fiji, the 22-year-old star finally told Kevin, 26, that he was going to be a dad again, said a source."

15 - Love: Federline.

" ... After their return from Fiji, Britney and Kevin also had their first big argument--a jealous spat about each other's former loves.

"Kevin's ex Shar Jackson, the mother of his two children, kept calling Kevin after the wedding -- even while he and Britney were on their honeymoon in Fiji, said the source.

"'It really got under Britney's skin. Shar used the excuse of wanting to talk with Kevin about their kids, even wanting Kevin to talk to their baby on the phone.

"'Britney told Kevin, Why are you talking to the baby? The baby can't talk over the phone!'"

Tenez! Deuce: Spears.

"When Britney gave Kevin a hard time about Shar, it set off Kevin--who had been harboring feelings of jealousy over Britney's ex-love Justin Timberlake, the source told The ENQUIRER.

"'Just before the wedding, Kevin was moving Britney's things to their new home when he found a box of old love letters from Justin. He confronted Britney. She said she would throw them away. But when the couple returned from their honeymoon, Kevin found the box of letters hidden in a closet!'"

30 - Love: Federline.

"An insider revealed: 'Kevin was really angry, and they had their first newlywed argument in front of their friends.

"'Soon they began screaming at each other.

Alright, kids, breakitup; breakitup!

"'Britney swears that her reason for keeping the letters is innocent and that she now considers Justin just a friend. And a few days after the argument, Britney told Kevin that Justin's letters were gone for good. She had disposed of them.'"

Tune in Next Week: Where Kevy shouts at an hysterically crying Britney 'cause she ate the last Little Debbie snack cake. Britney gets cold comfort by putting out an unfiltered Kool out in his Carvel Cookie Puss.

In: Naomi Campbell. No, she didn't do anything extraordinary (except wake up in the morning), we just like a girl who knows her limitations, as, according to British Vogue, she does:

"NAOMI CAMPBELL has disappointed her fans by rubbishing rumours that she is planning to relaunch her singing career. Stories emerged last month that the London-born supermodel had called upon Simon Cowell to help her take another shot at pop fame, despite the dismal sales of her 1994 album, Baby Woman. 'I cannot sing,' she told reporters this week. 'I think I've proved that.'"

Out: Sean Connery's Naughty Wee Bits (Editorial interjection: Eew). According to The Dish:

Free Image Hosting at <a href=

"Images of a young Sir Sean Connery's modelling semi-nude will soon go under the hammer in London.

"The Scottish actor, 74, posed in a thong (Editorial interjection: Eew) for life classes at Edinburgh Art College in the 1950s before he found success as James Bond.

"The pictures will go on sale for between $1,440 and $2,160 at auction house Christie's and a spokesperson says, 'We've had a lot of interest already.'"

In: New York Times Editorial. As we predicted (The Corsair rubs his hands together menacingly ... everything is proceeding according to plan, the center is the hottest piece of intellectual real estate in the American political arena. The question mark was whether or not the party which turned "Dashle" from the Senate Minority Leader into a verb ("poof!") would engage in the complex diplomatic dance necessary to hold the moderates, or just steamroll over them, to the delight of their base.

The answer comes in the form of a New York Times editorial. Republican moderates are being rolled, notes the NYTimes, which suggests that Rove is not willing to play compromise :

"(Senate Majority Leader) Bill Frist ... has engineered a rules change designed to cow the few Republican moderates who may still be willing to nip back at demands for party fealty.

"The rule undercuts members' independence by giving Dr. Frist the power to fill the first two vacancies on all committees. This hobbles seniority, which has been the traditional path to power. The leader now has a cudgel for shaping the 'world's greatest deliberative body' into a chorus line.

"Senator Olympia Snowe of Maine, chronic Republican maverick, got to the heart of the matter in skewering her leader's accomplishment: 'There is only one reason for that change, and it is to punish people.'

"Toadying, of course, would avoid punishment. (Senator Arlen Specter's flirtation with independence already seems shaken by anti-abortion zealots.) Yet in a perverse way, this hubris by the Senate's more potent conservative bloc compounds the value of any dissent. The rule may even brace moderates to stand faster against extreme G.O.P. initiatives. "

Just as The Corsair predicted, a Moderate-Democrat alliance. Bonus question: On whose side will John McCain be, he who is all but certainly running for President in 2008, against a possible Rove backed Frist-Jeb Bush ticket.

Out: Dustin Hoffman. Ananova writes:

"Dustin Hoffman has admitted he was hooked on having sex in public places.

"The double Oscar-winner even made love in the DJ booth of a nightclub while revellers danced just feet away."

Like (rolling eyes at the naivite) ... who didn't? (The Corsair smokes a Camel filtered cigarette lustily and blows smoke in the air)

"... I met a couple of girls in bed more than once, and I had sex in public places - like the Studio 54 club in New York."

"Hoffman told the US edition of GQ magazine he quit cocaine because he was allergic to it.

"He said: 'I couldn't breathe for weeks afterwards.'"

The suction caused by a shnoz the size of Dustin Hoffman must have generated massive uplift.

In: Hey, Teacher, leave Those Kids Alone!

Out: John Kerry. Note to John Kerry, follow Al Gore's lead -- you get one shot and that's it, because according to TheHill:

"Many Democratic lawmakers are interpreting Sen. John Kerry?s active participation in selecting the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) as the strongest signal yet that the defeated presidential candidate is keeping his options open for a bid in 2008.

"Last week, Kerry contacted nearly every elected member of the House Democratic leadership, and other powerful lawmakers, on behalf of Gov. Tom Vilsack of Iowa. On Monday, Vilsack issued a statement that he was no longer pursuing the chairmanship.

"But Kerry?s aggressive support of Vilsack has convinced many key House Democrats that Kerry wants to install a chairman who would be in Kerry?s debt and would not attempt to dissuade the Massachusetts senator from seeking the highest office again."

It's over Kerry ... it's over.

Friday, November 26, 2004

What's Eating Colin Powell?

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US Secretary of State Colin Powell kindasorta agreed last year, after so many double team wedgies at the hands of Rummy and Cheney ("weighing a combined weight od 600 pounds, from parts unknown ...") that he would stay on for a single term at State.

Then Arafat went on to Jesus, opening up a once in a lifetime opportunity for a US-brokered Middle East peace. Sweet. Only problem is, Bush liked the idea of putting the popular quasi-rogue Secretary of State out to pasture ("I have capital ..."). Colin was only really good for trips to the UN, and, well, who needs the UN?

"We are in mutual agreement that is was the appropriate time for me to move on," said Powell of his (Averted Gaze) "resignation."

Riight. But Powell's not bitter (cough cough). No, appearance and reality differ (cough cough). There are other reasons why Powell dropped the two "P-Bombs" this week. He's not bitter. But it was odd that the "P-Bombs" included that he:

1) Powell, "divulged raw secret intelligence from an Iraqi dissident group indicating Tehran was studying ways to deliver nuclear warheads on missiles." (Newsweek)

and, 2) He publicly said he (State?) did not recognize the Ukraine vote, giving Russia expert Condi Rice a big mess to clean up on (air quotes) "the diplomatic tip."

But ... Colin Powell's not bitter.

Here are some other things Powell is working on before his departure in 2005 (But ... he's not bitter) ...

3) Leaving all the toilet seats at the State Department up.

4) Calling the Japanese Finance Ministers, "economic girly men"

5) Commenting near an open mike -- accidentally, on purpose -- that Jacques Chirac is, "an excellent chocolatier," but he, "aint worth a damn as a statesman."

6) Warning that Chinese economic expansion, like their infamous cuisine, "will leave the Chinese people still hungry within a while ..."

7) Praise the Saudi Royal family for their efforts at improving the global economy, ensuring, "Russian whores fulltime employment."

8) Threaten nuclear diplomacy with Canada if they do not immediately recall annoying export Celine Dion.

9) Assure North Korean dictator Kim Jung-Il that bilateral diplomatic relations between the two nations are bound to improve because Condi told him in private that she found the midget tyrant to be "a real slab of beef."

10) And, to complicate matters, "She'll love him long time."

11) Suddenly and violently bitchslapping German PM Gerhard Schroeder.

12) Offering British Prime Minister Tony Blair a dog yummy in front of "hot cameras" and rub his belly when he's all done.

13) Conceding that the French Foreign Ministry can "out cheese eat" their counterparts at State.

14) Appoint former Governor Jim McGreevy as special envoy to "the beaches of Rio De Janeiro."

But Powell is not bitter ...

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Happy Thanksgiving

A safe and happy thanksgiving to the darling blog wife, and all of you who I got to know a bit through those emails and comments. See you back here after the holiday.

Ron Mwangaguhunga

(Blogging to resume Saturday)
Jermaine Jackson to Divorce, Petitions Jaafar and Jermajesty to Remain With Wife

Chris Rock on Jermaine Jackson: ""the greasiest n-gga you ever seen" "Does he just spray Armor All on his face and sh-t?!"


Above: No, don't wipe your screen for excess oil. It's only Jermaine Jackson.

Jermaine rocked out an obscure duet with Pia Zadora, whose video The Corsair really dug as a kid. Our tastes have improved somewhat, we'd like to believe. You'll probably remember Ol' "Dynamite," but now Jermaine is breaking up; and you'd think breaking up would be impossible, what, with all that greasy varnish going on.

And, poor Jermajesty (The Corsair laments), his little kingdom will be with an absentee monarch. Right about the time when all the kids will start whipping his ass for being named Jermajesty. Who said life was fair? According to the Beeb:

"Former Jackson 5 singer Jermaine Jackson has filed for divorce from his wife of nine years, Alejandra.

"The older brother of Michael Jackson petitioned the Superior Court, asking that the couple's children, Jaafar and Jermajesty, live with their mother.

"The couple, who live in a suburb of Los Angeles, married in 1995 but separated earlier this month.

"The court document, filed on Tuesday, cited irreconcilable differences as the reason for the split.

"Jermaine Jackson, who turns 50 on 11 December has three children from a previous marriage to Hazel Gordy, daughter of Motown founder Berry Gordy.

"He also has two children with another woman."

Pappa was a rolling stone ...
A Little of the Old In and Out

Above: Patrons of the Arts, Nina Griscom, Leonel Piraino, and Candace Bushnell sip the distilled blood of one hundred Rumanian peasants while posing for photographs after a perfectly "ducky (air kiss)" evening at the ballet. (image via NySocialDiary)

In: Candace Bushnell. Last night was not unlike any other night for The Corsair. Barhopping is an art form and we take it seriously. We found ourselves confused and inebriated near Lincoln Center around midnight in a rush of tuxedoed people on their way out of some swishy occasion. As we stumbled, snaking and spiralling our way through the pagan streets, like Encolpius in Fellini's Magnum Opus, The Satyricon, a tall, thin exquisitely dressed lady walked side by side with her handsome but vacuous looking husband (maybe she likes 'em big and real dumb?) passed us. As we were drunk, she looked rather like Marcel Duchamp's Nude Descending A Staircase.

It was Candace Bushnell, creator of Sex and the City, social vampire prowling the night, scourge of new york media chattering classes. But I'll be damned if she wasn't a hottie in that sort of Upper-East Side-of-Manhattan-reptilian-kept-mistress kind of way. You know what I mean? What we're saying is -- The Corsair would definitely hit that. Mitigating factor: We were three sheets to the wind on "The Cutty".

NYSocialDiary talks to Candace:

"Mr. Askegard who may be the tallest ballet star dancing today (he�s six-four, weighs about 185) is also the husband of Candace Bushnell, creator of 'Sex In the City.' She was present tonight. During intermission we were commenting on how muscular he looks on stage whereas in life, he seems tall and lanky.

"The musculature we mentioned was a dancer�s waist on down. Otherwise, she said, he is a pretty thin guy although he has to cut back on his eating before the season begins. Today, for example, she said he had edamame for lunch. She herself went out and had pasta (and had a good laugh over the difference).

"I asked her if it was a thrill to see her husband on stage. She said more than that, she was always nervous, nervous about him getting through the performance. At his weight, she pointed out, it�s a lot to lift for those jumps that he executed so seemingly effortlessly."

Out: eBay. First they purported to sell Britney's panties (Averted Gaze). Then we were harassed with Geri Halliwell's dog poop. Finally, the last straw, former Real Worlder Trishell's ass went to the highest bidder. One always thinks -- that's as low as they go, they have finally reached the bottom, they have achieved equilibrium. Goping any lower would entail reservations with Lucifer. They just can't.

They have. They're selling the Ron Artest Pacers/Pistons Brawl original CUP. You know what The Corsair is talking about. The cup that was thrown by this asshole that started it all.

The bids are up to $1,500.

In: Melissa Auf Der Maur. 7 years ago, The Corsair almost got set up on a date with Melissa Auf Der Maur by her cousins. To this day we regret not pressing the issue, but we were working at New York Magazine in the daytime, and Sonicnet (now part of MTVInteractive) at night, attending crazy Silicon Alley functions, on all sorts of pharmaceuticals (Bolivian Marching Powder? Vitamin C?), it was the 90s, a fairy tale post Cold War prosperity pervaded the young and The Corsair was in the heart of it all, who the hell had time to "date"? Yes, as you can guess, The Corsair blew it big time.

FashionWireDaily went shopping with Courtney Love's former bass player, like we could have been doing if we played our cards right:

"In fact, the 32-year-old Auf der Maur � who played bass in Hole and The Smashing Pumpkins before releasing her eponymous solo CD earlier this year � was one of the first celebrities to wear Theyskens designs back in 1999, when a stylist gave the svelte singer-songwriter a Theyskens latex gown to wear for a photo shoot. 'It was the most gorgeous fantasy piece I had ever worn,' she recalled. 'I sent him a Polaroid of me in it with a long letter saying You make the clothes of my Victorian futuristic super hero dreams. I love your vision and your idea of beauty and hope to meet you one day.'

" ... Onstage, she's all about her Zaldy rock-and-roll 'uniform': sleeveless high-neck top with peek-a-boo lace insert and fitted, leather-tasseled pants tucked into knee-high black leather boots that she has custom-made in her native Montreal. 'I wanted it to be a serious respectable uniform,' she told us. 'Like a Victorian soldier, with that kind of modest exposure � all the nice, sneaky ways they showed the female secrets.'"

Out: Cocktail Parties. The Corsair loves James Saint James, who, you will soon see, is nothing short of blogtastic. But the subject of his obsession escapes us. The cocktail party is just an excuse to drink the blood of Rumanian peasants and roasted Chilean babies. You think The Corsair is kidding, all shits and giggles -- huh? -- but one day, one day soon (The Corsair ruefully shakes his fist at the reader), when they lock me up in a detention center and this blog abruptly gets pulled down, then you'll believe, then you'll see that The Corsair was hipping you to what's going on!

Anyhoo (The Corsair calms down, sips The Cutty), James St. James loves those damn things:

"A photo book of charity balls! I LOVE charity balls! The grande dames. The social X-rays. The puffy chic of Nouvelle Society. Remember the '80s? Women like Mercedes and Gayfryd and Nan � MY GOD, NAN KEMPNER! Oh, I loved those women. LOVED. THOSE. WOMEN. I once d�coupaged a coffee table entirely in Pat Buckley�s face. It�s true: I�m a total hag-fag. Whatever. I call it biddy-ism � my secret shame. I get hard reading Suzy."

Oh dear.

Angelina Jolie: "Brad's a great kisser"

Joanne Nathan interviews 29 year old MILF Angelina Jolie for, of all places, that significant cultural artifact, Star Magazine. "I'm going to accept Cambodian citizenship," says Jolie at one point (The Corsair makes impromptu Cambodian reservations), "and hang out with my baby." Joanne Nathan is like some rabid wolverine-pit bull mix from Hell in this interview, plowing into the untold depths of Jolie's sex life employing all sorts of inappropriate lines of questioning. It's fucking beautiful. We truly heart you Joanne Nathan, from the bottom of our stalker heart.

Joanne Nathan:Does Colin live up to his bad-boy rep?

Angelina Jolie: I wasn't there in the middle of the night! We didn't hang out together much, with the exception of a few nights when we'd all go out to dinner. Most of the time I was with my son Maddox.

Nathan:True or false: Did you have an affair with Colin?

Jolie: Completely, utterly false. I get linked with every co-star I work with. He's a great guy, but there was no affair.

Nathan:What about the time when you and Colin went on that camel ride?

Angelina: That's true, we did go on a camel ride, but that was also with Maddox, so it wasn't exactly a night of wild and crazy drinking! Not with me, anyway [laughs].

Nathan:You just worked with Brad Pitt. Who's a better kisser, Colin or Brad?

Angelina: Well, Brad and I play husband and wife, so there's some kissing... all I'll say is, Brad's a great kisser, and I'm sure Colin is too. They both know what they're doing in that department.

Nathan:Do you think you'll get married again?

Angelina: It would take a lot for me to even consider marriage. I think it's wonderful when there's a dad in the house, but I think it's better to have no one than the wrong person. And I don't want to make another mistake [sighs]. But never say never.

Nathan:What do you wear to bed?

Angelina: Nothing. I like to sleep naked.

Read the rest of the interview here. The Corsair's head just exploded.
Jessica Simpson to the Duke Boys: Grow Up

"Just two good ole boys, never meanin' no harm, beats all you ever saw been in trouble with the law since the day they was born."


According to
Ananova, all is not well on the set of The Dukes of Hazzard:

"Jessica Simpson has reportedly fallen out with her co-stars on the set of the new Dukes of Hazzard movie.

"The singer, who plays hot-pants wearing Daisy in the movie, is said to have grown tired of Johnny Knoxville and Seann William Scott's constant teasing about the size of her butt."

Straight'n the curves, flatten'n the hills ... someday the mountain might get'em but the law never will. Making their waaayyyy, the only way they know how. That's just a little bit more than the law will allow.

"A source said: 'Johnny and Seann have been saying her butt looks big compared to the original Daisy. They know she's sensitive about it.'"

Just twoood ol' boys, wouldn't change if they could. Fightin' the system like a two modern day robin hoods ...

"'In one scene, Johnny and Seann are in the car as Bo and Luke talking to Daisy and then leap out. But in one take they leapt out naked from the waist down. Jessica freaked out and told them to grow up.'"

Late Posting Today

As you can imagine, The Corsair has 1,001 Thanksgiving errands to do. Posting will begin around 5pm in the evening.

See you then


Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Queen of All Media Gets TV Deal

Question: What happens when this woman gets excited?
Answer: Robin Quivers.

It's about time. Dan Klores must have been working overtime on this one and the stars were correctly aligned, but it worked. Just about everyone got at least a development deal out of the Howard Stern Show but Robin. Stuttering John got to announce for Leno, Artie got a development deal, Jim Florentine got Crank Yankers, Richard Belzer got on Law and Order after an exec heard him on the show, Jimmy Kimmel got his late night program based, in part, on appearances on the show.

Now it's Robin's turn. According to the AP:

"Robin Quivers, shock jock Howard Stern's longtime sidekick, is making a solo move toward television.

"Quivers has signed a deal with Sony Pictures Television to develop a syndicated talk show for daytime TV, the company announced Monday.

"The potential series could debut by fall 2005. Quivers will continue her work on Stern's radio show while developing her TV show, Sony said.

"There was no indication whether she planned to remain with Stern if her show gets a green light. A call to her manager in New York was not immediately returned Monday."

Watch out Oprah, there's new girl in town, with a brand new style ...
A Little of the Old In and Out

In: Carolina Herrera. Okay, The Corsair is going to confide in you, dear reader. You can keep a secret. After he does so, he will be vulnerable, he'll need comfort in your forgiving arms, so be sensitive, his silent waters run deep. Okay, here goes (The Corsair takes a deep breath) -- Is The Corsair a freak for finding (The Corsair sips a glass of "liquid courage") 65 year old Carolina Herrera vaguely hott? (Waits a beat) I am? (profoundly embarrassed) Okay, uh, like that was just rhetorical and such. Whatever.


Above: The sexiest senior citizen in America. Grroww...

NySocial Diary writes of the strangely sexy icon:

"Andr� Leon Tally hosted a party at Bergdorf?s celebrating the publication of Alexandra Kotur's book, Carolina Herrera: Portrait of a Fashion Icon. Fresh from receiving the Fashion Force Award at Glamour's Women of the Year Awards the night before, Herrera held court for close to two hours surrounded by a sea of admirers who came to show their love for a woman whose name has become synonymous with elegance.

"Born into an aristocratic Venezuelan family, Carolina Herrera attended her first fashion show at the age of 13, showcased her first collection at the New York Metropolitan Club in 1981 and has since distinguished herself through a storied career that has seen her dress the Royals as well as First Ladies Jacqueline Kennedy-Onassis, Nancy Reagan and Laura Bush. Of the many Society designers to emerge during the 1980's Herrera is the lone survivor."

Out: Dan Rather. Weasel! According to CBS (link via DrudgeReport), Dan Rather is history:

"Dan Rather will step down from 'CBS Evening News' in the spring of 2005, ABC News has learned.

"CBS declined to comment on Rather's future."

Oh, The Corsair will comment on Rather's future. One word: Bleak.

The Corsair has fucked with Dan Rather's weasely-leftish ass in the past. Often. Really, really (The Corsair smiles warmly at the memories of really nailing Rathers ass to the wall over the months in this blog) often, but we'll miss him. We will. We'll miss his pasty ass. The image of he and Bill Clinton, dressed in matching blue jeans (Rather's denim pulled up granpa-like, hiked all the way up to his belly; Clinton's, of course, fashionable, figure flattering), strolling down the streets of Little Rock on that fateful 60 Minutes always has me rofl. Frankly, Dan Rather was a colossal mistake for the network -- not intelligent, not sophisticated, opportunistic, charismatically challenged. What were they thinking? And, while we are on the subject: What was the frequency, Kenneth?

In: Reba McEntire, Fashion Plate. According to FashionWeekDaily:

"Reba McEntire, the country music singing, sitcom acting, red-headed Jill-of-all-trades has chosen the Arnell Group, a division of Omnicom to create and launch the advertising campaign for her new clothing line, Reba, to be sold through Dillard?s stores beginning spring ?05.

"'Peter and the Arnell Group have been responsible for launching some of the most successful brands in America today. I'm tickled to pieces to get the chance to work with him. His creative eye and knowledge of the marketplace will be a tremendous addition to our team,' said McEntire."

We're tickled as well. The new emerging trend of classes for the masses is trickling down to the heartland. Only, she will have her work cut out for her with her particular, uhm, (air quotes) "demographic" (sotto voce, those among us who consume possum and fried Spam ... shhh), as they tend to wear tube tops to weddings.

Out: Colin Farrell. According to the 3AM Girls:

"CHARMING Colin Farrell 'christens' every hotel room he stays in - by going to the loo as soon as he gets there.

"The hellraising actor says he likes nothing more than reading the room-service menu while doing a number two.

"He confessed: 'Me and my sister still get excited every time we go into a hotel.

"'The first things I do when I get into the hotel room are go in, have a s***, read the menu and think: 'What am I going to replace this with tonight?'

"'For some reason, I have to christen every room as soon as I get into it.'"

Thanks for sharing, Colin.

In: Al Reynolds. Too funny. This, from that significant cultural artifact, The National Enquirer:

"Star Jones' wedding joy was threatened by behind-the-scenes turmoil, a feuding wedding party--and the public humiliation of the bride, say sources.

"Star ripped into groom Al Reynolds for reigniting rumors he's gay--just days before the ceremony. War erupted among the bridesmaids. And 'The View' queen's demands triggered resentment, charge insiders.

And, under the banner headline, "Bad Move," we read:

"The November 13 nuptials to Wall Street banker Al Reynolds became the biggest celebrity wedding fiasco of the year even before the sizable 'Bridezilla'--as she was dubbed by the New York press--walked down the aisle at the historic St. Bartholomew's Church in Manhattan.

"'Star was humiliated by Al when she found that only weeks before he went to a Halloween party at a gay-friendly Manhattan club. Al was dressed as a male stripper--wearing a Speedo swimsuit and white bathrobe,' a close source told The ENQUIRER."

The Corsair softly chuckles.

"'He went to the club with friends who were dressed like the Village People.'

"When Star found out about Al's shenanigans, she quickly set him straight."

Oh no, dear, Star won't be setting anyone straight (two snaps and a neck roll)

Ken Auletta's Mantan

Hamilton Nolan's PRWeek Ken Auletta blowjob of a profile begins slow and clumsy, entirely without enough suction, but progresses -- mirabile dictu -- into something ... really quite pleasurable, like when he says, tongue-in-cheek (so to speak):

"Ken Auletta's tan rivals George Hamilton's. You could be forgiven for confusing the two. Both have risen to the top of their respective fields: Hamilton, the field of burnished-bronze, vaguely famous cultural icons, and Auletta, the field of communications journalism."


Above: "Does this suit detract from, or amplify the nut-brown subtext of my spectacular mantan?"

Brobdinangian is Ken Auletta's mantan, radiating all sorts of lusty golden honeyed waves of lovingkindness that one does not usually associate with the austere environment at The New Yorker. The New Yorker suggests to me an aversion to all things sunlight in general. One imagines Early Gothic Church architecture, heavy walls revealing little sunlight. The writers and factcheckers are cloistered like monks in the Dark Ages, engaged in scholasticism, away front he riffraff and rabble, resisting the plague, protecting Western Civilization from the barbarian hordes.

One can smell the roasting sweetmeats and boiled legumes and hear the Vespers to the English language being sung, to Saint EB White ("holy, holy, holy") and patron saint William Shawn, dearly departed ("thrice holy in the eyes of God"). One can hear the moans, as David Remnick exacts corporal punishment to copy editors who misplace the semicolon ("blessed be he who useth the semicolon correctly") and holy punishment meted out to incorrect factcheckers ("spare the rod and spoil the monk"). His mighty arm swingeth ("swish!"), and lamentation can be heard sprialling throughout the fortified halls of The Monastary of St. Conde Nast.

Wealthy corrupt patron, Baron Si Newhouse tosses some gold and silver pieces to keep the monastery afloat and his prestige in intellectual circles intact ...

Just then, Auletta struts into the offices of The New Yorker offices, a la Travolta in Saturday Night Fever, the black sheep of Conde Nast.

Imagine the contrast, if you will. Auletta's nut brown countenance, his honeyed lustre, suggesting leisurely time spent in Mustique, versus the unhealthy veal-like complexion and texture of New Yorker writers in mid Autumn, like, oh, say, Jonathan Franzen, or Philip Gourevich, or even editor David Remnick. Get some sun, guys.

Does Auletta inspire tan envy in The New Yorker offices? We think he might.

Then mantan notwithstanding, Auletta is a first rate journo. His Bob Shrum piece for The New Yorker was enlightening. The way he postures and poses, as if he were a world historical figure is truly amazing to behold:

"Indeed, Auletta's sunny personality has made him a popular public speaker (he addressed the PRSA convention in New York last month) and TV guest. His enthusiasm is such that he has appeared on the indefatigable Charlie Rose Show more than a dozen times in the past decade, discussing everything from the AOL-Time Warner merger to Connie Chung's career.

"Rose says that people yearn to be engaged by well-informed journalists who probe subjects deeply, and that Auletta fits the description. 'He knows the landscape and the players,' says Rose. 'He has an extraordinary ability to soak up the environment and gain the confidence of people so they give him access. He has total integrity about reporting what he knows and sees.'"

Hey, Charlie Rose, this isn't about you, it's about Ken Auletta. We caught you! You've got to watch Charlie Rose, keep him on a short leash. He has this Kissingerian talent of spinning everything into a conversation about his own virtues. Any subject. Ask him about the Gold Standard or The Thucydidean discovery of the balance of power theory of nation states in The Pelopenessian War and, surely, the conversation will wind back to him, and what exciting projects he's doing now, and, of course, who he knows. Poor Amanda Burden gets to hear Charlie rant 24/7 ...

Matt Damon Wants to be The Sexiest Man Alive

Pity Matt Damon, has has far more than we will ever have, so, well, so much the better to get our shadenfreude on. Let's lay waste to his pampered ass!

Damon has an Oscar. He is the star of a hit movie franchise. His Boston Red Sox won the World Series. He is rich. He had dated Winona Rider and Penelope Cruz. One could go on and on for ages about the advantages of being Matt Damon.

But, alas, for, like, the 20,000th year in a row, he has actively campaigned for and brutally lost People Magazine's sexiest Man Alive "honors." (A controlled belly-laugh, followed by a small closing cough of feigned detachment). They are fucking with you Matt Damon. One can almost hear the People Magazine staffers reveling in the power they have over you. It's like Psy ops, dude.

The fact that Matt Damon takes seriously a contest that even housewives in suburban Kentucky do not take seriously is simultaneously touching and revolting.

According to Ananova:

"Brad Pitt is secretly coaching Matt Damon to become the Sexiest Man Alive.

"The Bourne Identity star lost out to Jude Law on this year's People magazine list."

That he lost to Law has got to hurt considering: a) an overconfident prick like Jude Law would never do something as louche as actively campaign for the "title," and b) Jude Law played, in The Talented Mr. Ripley, a man who Matt Damon secretly worshipped.

Life imitates Art.

"Pitt, a previous winner, is convinced his pal is quietly upset that he didn't make the cover of the annual magazine - but he's launching a campaign to get Damon on top in 2005 reports Femalefirst.

"He said: 'I think Matt was shaken by it. He campaigned hard; he put up a good fight. The kid really tried his best and I think it was toughest on him.

"'I think if he sticks with it and he keeps applying himself like he has been this year, I think we'll see some greatness from him next year.'"

Oh dear.

"He added: 'George Clooney and I have started a class as former Sexiest Men Alive. We're working with the young 'uns.

The Corsair ordinarily wouldn't believe it, but this story has been going around for years now. Matt Damon actually dreams of being People Magazine's Sexiest Man Alive. It must be some childhood thing. He covets that crock of shit title. Really and truly.

"'Jude was at the top of his class immediately. It was obvious to us that he was a natural. But we have great hopes for Mattie that he'll get there.'"

Fresh, new content (November 15,2007): here
Keisha Knight Pulliam, AKA Rudy, All Grown Up


Above: Little Rudy Huxtable ... aint so little any more. And it kind of disturbs us.

Originally published March 2004, with some modifications:

There is a subject that is troubling me mightily. (The Corsair takes a drink from a glass of Fiji water) Rudy from the Cosby Show. You know her -- little kid, jammies, the youngest one, mild ... adorable.

To be frank, The Corsair cannot think of Keisha Knight Pulliam as "sexy" (Eew), he simply cannot . Intellectually, The Corsair can grasp the idea, he can wrap himself around the concept, but The Corsair saw her as a cute baby, so he just can't. He just can't. Keisha Knight Pulliam is not sexy:


Oh dear sweet reader, but she is. She is (The Corsair dramatically lunges for the curtains, wailing)! Keisha Knight Pulliam has flowered into "the hottness." And it's making me feel really evil.

Anyhoo: Keisha Knight Pulliam in XXL:

"XXL: And in 'One Call Away' you're up there in a cute little bra ...

"Keisha: They knew that I wasn't going to do anything that wasn't tasteful. The video is not demeaning, or I wouldn't have done it. Yes, you do see me in a bra and people are very shocked by that because they're remembering me as a 10 year old girl. What's appropriate for someone who is 25 is not appropriate for someone who is 10. This isn't Rudy in a bra. It's Keisha Knight-Pulliam, the actress."

The Corsair still feels guilty. He imagines Rudy, nestled in the arms of Phylicia Rashaad. The Corsair is so confused. Here's the basseyworld blog to sum up my feelings:

"Rudy Huxtable grew into a beautiful woman. I was worried there during the end of the Cosby Show. But since I went through awkward middle years myself, I knew shed grow out of it ... I have to say, I dont enjoy seeing Rudy Huxtable in a bra and panties. It's just not right."

No, it's not ... but ... cannot take eyes off ... picture. Someone please kill me.

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Monday, November 22, 2004

Howard Dean to DNC?

All eyes are on the DNC Chair battle royale and the quest to succeed Clintonista meatpuppet Terry McAuliffe. The next DNC chair has to a) be up in place before March 1 and, according to TheHill, b) "secure the support of a majority of the 447 members of the DNC, most of whom are elected by region." and, c) the 400-plus DNC membership meets in February to select a replacement.

The battle royale features Howard Dean (who, characteristically, has inspired a grass roots online 'Draft Dean' campaign), Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack (ed note: Vilsack just dropped out, Iowa -- which went for Bush -- is out to pasture, lending an updraft to the Dean campaign) or new favorite Simon Rosenberg, or quixotic former Clintonista Alexis Herman (What constituency does Herman even have?) Donna Brazile appears to have fallen of everyone's radar screen, and Hillary Clinton's right arm Harold Ickes is, inexplicably, ignored in the Hill article.

While Dean has his pluses (young crowds like him, he has pizazz, he is an internet fund raising juggernaut), The Hill notes his disadvantages, namely:

"That prospect was gleefully welcomed by Republicans. 'The only thing better than having Howard Dean as DNC chair is Nancy Pelosi as minority leader. They have their bases covered from San Francisco to Burlington. YEAAAHHH,' said Stuart Roy, a spokesman for House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas)."

Dean was out in the rain in Little Rock, pressing the flesh, pushing his cause. Vilsack's dropping out is a mighty blow to the chops of incoming Senate Minority Leader, Harry Reid, who touted the Iowa Governor. Amazingly, as early as last week Senator Tom Harkin, Senator Dick Durbin, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California and John Kerry of Massachusetts all endorsed Vilsack.

But tiny Humboldt county may be a signal of things to come, as they endorsed Dean over a list that included Hillary Clinton and Governor Jean Shaheen.

The Corsair predicts that if Hillary wants 2008 -- and The Corsair believes she does, even though the Democratic Party winning would be all but impossible with her at the top of the ticket -- she will begin maneuvering Ickes from behind the scenes.

Ultimately however, The Corsair believes that Howard Dean's Scorpio-style campaign and online support will win the day, making Dean -- and is this a good thing? -- "The KingMaker."