April 29, 2006

Volume 48 

1. CELEBRITY Janet Jackson
2. CELEBRITY Cruise News 
3. CELEBRITY Britney Spears
4. CELEBRITY Paris Hilton 
5. FAKE JOURNALISTS Page Sux Being Probed By The FBI
6. FAKE JOURNALISTS Victoria Newton
7. MUSIC Rapper Proof Killed
8. MUSIC Madonna Lawsuit
     Papers Report Madonna Marriage On The Rocks 
     Madonna’s New Tour Bore
     Copyright Infringing "American Dreamz" Flops
     Edgar Bronfman Fluff Piece 
     Madonna and ET
     Edgar Losing Money Again
     Edgar Slammed For Pressuring Apple
     George Clooney And Warner Bros Sued Over Stealing Syriana Script
     Clooney Too Liberal
     Copyright Infringer Nick Cannon Was Busted Via His Pager And An Easy Password
     TV Show "Conversations With Michael Eisner" Flops
     More Disney Death Rides  
9. TV AND FILM Ratings
10. LEGAL FILE Pellicano Case
     Director Busted
     Fields’ Law Firm To Split, 9 Lawyers Jumping Ship
     Brad Grey And Michael Ovitz Accused Of Lying To FBI
11. LEGAL FILE Judicial And Governmental Systems: Has The Constitution Become Novelty
     Judicial Responsibility
12. LEGAL FILE File This One Under Clueless
13. LEGAL FILE Davinci Crock Pt 5
     The Vatican Urges Boycott Of The Film "The Da Vinci Code"
14. INTERNET My Space Email Titled Identity Theft
15. SEISMOLOGY Earthquakes
16. SOCIAL ISSUES Duke University Rape
17. LOCAL NEWS FPL Follow Up
18. NATIONAL NEWS Tom Fox:
19. NATIONAL NEWS Immigration Situation
     14 Year Old Commits Suicide Over Immigration Protests
20. INTERNATIONAL NEWS Iran
     Missile Testing
     Remembering Chernobyl
21. SPIRITUAL Why Do People Treat Each Other So Badly

CELEBRITY Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson [Photo Credit: In Touch]

The Super Bowl wardrobe malfunction that occurred two years ago has changed Janet Jackson's career in a major way. It was sad and regrettable, however I think it's time we move on from it and stop throwing stones at her. 

Justin Timberlake

Inasmuch as it has unquestionably affected Janet's career, Justin seems to have walked away unscathed. That I don't get. How come he didn't get the brunt of it and she did. While I'm not picking on him, one can't help but notice the double standard and question why. Was it sexism or racism or both.

Either way, it's time to collectively let it go. She has suffered enough.

CELEBRITY Cruise News 

Katie Holmes [Photo Credit: Splash News]

Congrats to Katie Holmes on the birth of her baby. I hope she is doing well. Suri is a pretty name. I hope the baby will be safe and grow up in a good, normal environment - free from Scientology and its evils.

I know I joke about the Scientology cult, but there are serious dangers there, so be careful. Most of all, trust God for guidance and listen to good people’s objective advice, who have nothing to gain from you, like your family, who must be very concerned (I'm not even related to you and I'm concerned about what I've been reading).

As for Tom, why oh why did he choose a name for the baby that is being joked about due to the fact that the meaning in the Middle East is other than what his press release states. 

"It means 'get out of here' in the local language, Hebrew. 'I really don't know what they were thinking when they chose this name. It's a term that denotes expulsion, like 'Get out of here', said Gideon Goldenberg, a linguistics professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. "It's pretty blunt."

Yaron London, a cultural commentator for Israel's Channel 10 television, had this rhetorical question for Suri's proud parents: Why didn't you just go back to your ancestors' language, and call the kid 'Scram Cruise'?" – CNN

The funniest commentary was from a Jewish anchorman who said:

"'We seem to have learned a new Hebrew word — and from Tom Cruise, no less,' said a Channel 2 TV anchorman.'"- San Francisco Chronicle

While other people drew a blank:

"'Nobody here has ever really heard of it,' an announcer on Israel's Army Radio said during a discussion Thursday. The Yediot Ahronot newspaper agreed in its half-page splash on the celebrity birth.

In modern Hebrew, the word means a Cabinet Minister." - San Francisco Chronicle

Suri Alpaca (Llama)

In some Indian dialects, Suri means "pointy nose". And in Japanese, it can mean "pickpocket". Here's what people have already sent us:

Anonymous: "I just wanted to inform you that Suri in Amharic (Ethiopia's official language) means trouser."

Yolande: "I wonder whether Tom and Katie realised that Suri means pickpocket in Japanese.... A pickpocketting princess!"

Rushna from Bradford: "Suri in Bengali means burglary."

Linda from Wicklow, Ireland: "Suri = Surrey, which is also a region of England, where the late L Ron Hubbard's home is located and the headquarters of Scientology in the UK."

Ayu from Budapest: "In Javanese (not Japanese, mind you) suri means comb. I'm not saying that it has negative meaning whatsoever - only unusual, perhaps." - Sky News UK

Exhibit A That Tom Has Lost His Mind: Cruise To Eat Baby's Placenta

Ok, then. -Aisha raises her hand to ask a question- "Just thinking out loud, but, um, shouldn't that qualify as cannibalism?"

Just what are they smoking at the Scientology Center? Is it a new form of "alien" weed or something? I mean, really - this is getting muy bizarre.

You know his publicist passed out when he read that one. The man probably just gave up. And I thought Paris Hilton's publicist had problems.

And you know what's even worse? He thinks all of this stuff is okay and that his declarations are being viewed as normal by the public. Note to Tom: They're not!

Tom made Katie keep silent during the birth of their baby in accordance with Scientology's demented rules - now maybe it's time Cruise takes a vow of silence of his own. 

"HOLLYWOOD actor Tom Cruise is planning to eat his new baby's placenta, it emerged today.

It is the latest in a series of bizarre revelations by the 43-year-old Mission Impossible star about the child he is expecting with fiancée Katie Holmes.

He told GQ magazine: "I'm gonna eat the placenta. I thought that would be good. Very nutritious. I'm gonna eat the cord and the placenta right there." - Manchester Evening News UK

Tom Changes Katie's Name To Kate

Of all the nerve. Ok, what is that about. The girl's name is KATIE not KATE! That's her Christian name her parents gave her. How are you just gonna change it like that.

What if people started calling you Tommy.

What's really creepy as well is that prior to arranging to meet trap Katie Holmes, Cruise tried to court trap KATE Bosworth of "Win A Date With Tad Hamilton" fame (I talked about Josh Duhamel from that film in the Column last year. Oh by the way, my apologies to Fergie regarding the compliments I wrote, no disrespect intended - I didn't know).

It seems Cruise tried to be her Tad Hamilton last year and girlfriend made a run for it - but poor Katie got hit with the tranquilizer dart and got caught in the net (mace girl, mace - running won't work!).

Scientology's Stance On Psychiatry

I read this and laughed til I cried (laughed about Scientology, not about autism, which is serious): 

“John Travolta and Kelly Preston Are Crazy, Too - While other stars with autistic children, such as Sylvester Stallone and Dan Marino, have long been champions of research, Travolta and Preston have allegedly not sought treatment because (their son) Jett would have to go to a psychiatrist and autism is generally treated with antidepressant and antipsychotic medications.

How much more do we need to learn about Scientology before the FBI burns their compound to the ground?  

The only thing we can positively say for sure about Scientology at this point is that it's insane and it apparently hates kids.  

If I was a child, I'd rather take my chances with Britney and K-Fed. They might not be able to spell "hospital" and I might wake up in the dishwasher, but at least I know that when I start having seizures, I'll have six days before they realize I'm not breakdancing and call a doctor.” - IDLYITW

Re Scientology: Yes, when will the FBI burn their compound to the ground (-Aisha looks at Robert "Macaroni Man" Mueller-).

Too many people, including children, have been killed in this sick cult (dozens)Not to mention allegations from ex-members of the cult and other members of the public that the children in said cult are being molested and as a result are infected with STDs.

...And you wonder why I Sound Off about Cruise for fronting and promoting that sick organization. He gets no sympathy from me.

Cruise Pulls Sympathy Card

Tom Cruise turns the attention to his dad, who he said was abusive to him:

“And tonight on Entertainment Tonight and in the upcoming Parade Magazine, he'll chat about his dyslexia, his father-issues and of course, his newest child. And, no, we're not talking about Katie.  

(Though there's still time for her to run...and take the TomKitten, too.)” – The LAist 

Controlling Cruise Forces Katie To Convert From Catholicism To Scientology

Controlling Cruise with Katie (loosen up that grip on the girl - figuratively and literally)

The Bible views it a serious sin to draw people away from the faith. Not something to play with. Cruise, who now speaks for Katie (until the brainwashing takes) says she is not a Catholic anymore, she is a Scientologist.

It's ironic, as on the internet they are now calling Katie a "Stepford Wife" (meaning brainwashed and programmed) due to the glazed over look in her eyes and her smiling all the time, even when Cruise spoke about the abuse he allegedly received from his dad.

Katie, if they're holding you against your will, the next time you go on TV, blink 3 times in a row or sing the theme from "The Beverly Hillbillies" and we'll call for help. Just kidding. But seriously, be safe. 

Scientology 

Tom Cruise has single handedly destroyed said cult. Everyone thinks they’re nuts now (well, except them). It’s at an unprecedented level now thanks to Cruise and his bad PR. The irreparable, negative mainstream media coverage and public feedback overwhelmingly shows that people think they are psychotic. Cruise has done this cult in. 

However, there should be serious concern for those who are still in said cult.

CELEBRITY Britney Spears

Sound Off Column Caption: Really, what does she have against shoes? And judging by little SPF's sun burnt cheeks, he needed some SPF.

Britney and baby [Photo Credit: US Weekly]

Last month, on the 31st  of March, I joked about Britney Spears’ parenting skills, wrote about child safety in relation to her to highlight what I felt is clearly a problem (click here). The month before I wrote about her running like a bat out of hell while pushing a stroller that the baby was visibly sliding out of (click here). Apparently, he slid out of his high chair this month and fractured his skull.

I wouldn't mind if she proved me wrong in what I keep saying on here regarding her careless behavior in relation to her child. However, once again she has proved me right. April 1, 2006, her son Sean A/K/A little guy, suffered a fractured skull, however it was not made public until April 11, 2006.

They claim it was the nanny, but I’m not so sure I believe that. It’s got Britney written all over it (for further reference see Britney negligently driving with child behind the wheel). The boy deserves better than this.

How would she like it if someone dropped her on her head.

“Britney Back in Unwanted Spotlight. The sheriff's department could confirm only that its deputies went to Spears' home to "keep the peace," as Glafkides put it, while the L.A. County Department of Children and Family Services conducted its business.”  

a CAT scan revealed Sean Preston had sustained a "minor skull fracture and a blood clot." As is the routine, the magazine reported, the head-injury diagnosis was red-flagged by child-welfare officials and an inquiry opened.” 

In February, the Department of Children and Family Services dispatched sheriff's deputies to Spears' home after photographers caught the singer in the act of driving with her young son on her lap, the boy unbuckled and unrestrained.” – E

Sean: ya'll help me! she's crazy like that song she sings!

  

Britney and son Sean [Photo Courtesy Of Fame] 

"People in the News: Not a Mom of the Year contender - Seemingly intent on being nominated for Mommie Dearest of the Year, Britney Spears received a visit from child welfare authorities after her son's nanny accidentally dropped 6-month-old Sean Preston from a high chair, The Associated Press reports. The infant suffered a "minor skull fracture and a blood clot.

The pop diva is again under scrutiny for her child-rearing decisions -- notably the choice to take the child to the hospital six days after his fall (and after a doctor had examined him at the house)." - Seattle Post Intelligencer

The baby was in pain all that time with a head injury and they waited that long to take him to the hospital. Britney, what are you doing? Really? I know accidents happen, but this is rubbish. It’s one thing after another.

He is a lovely child, but as I wrote two months ago, I really pray he “survives his parents laxity.” I wasn't kidding. The signs are there that something isn't right.

For a change Britney is sleeping behind the wheel with the only thing separating them being zit cream rather than the little whippersnapper:

Well at least the zit cream isn't showing in public, right:

Public Feedback:

1. Anonymous said... maybe the big ol' scary paparazzi bust into her house while she was putting Sean into the high chair and she had to run for her life, y'all. they had cameras. it was her mama bear instinct. April 11, 2006 3:22 PM

2. Sean P fell from a highchair?! Brit probably didn’t realize that you need to fasten him in and fasten the tray in front on him. She probably just plopped him down and left him for half an hour while she searched for a fresh bag of cheetos. I don’t feel sorry for Brit AT ALL…just proves once again that she and Kevin are the last people on Earth who should have a child. BellaRagazza April 11, 2006 11:50 am

3. lucy said... Should it come as any kind of surprise that these two hillbillies don't have a clue when it comes to raising a child? Hey Brit, guess having a baby for the publicity isn't working out so well for ya is it? April 11, 2006 3:24 PM

4. another ToDD said... What a wuss! I used to ride on my moms lap in her stuntcar seatbeltless while second hand smoking three packs a day while my dad ripped off thomas dolby all the time...ok, not really April 11, 2006 3:34 PM

5. Anonymous said... stupid !! UGH. I hope he gets taken away and Resse and Ryan adopt him and give him a good home. April 11, 2006 3:35 PM

6. MizLiz said...A "nasty fall" from a high chair?? If you believe this one, you might possibly believe in the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy as well. Obviously the nanny was on a coffee break, and poor little Sean had to depend on the ***** trash parents. God help him. April 11, 2006 3:49 PM

7. Anonymous said..."nasty fall from his high chair" Well, what do you thing is going to happen when you smack a baby in the head while they are in a high chair? Wolves would make better parents. April 11, 2006 4:34 PM

8. Brandi Love said... isnt lil' Sean a lil' young for a high chair? I don't have kids but it's he bouncer feeding age still? April 11, 2006 4:37 PM

9. todd's mom said... don't most highchairs have 5-point harnesses? they were probably practicing their midget-tossing with little Sean. April 11, 2006 4:44 PM

10. Anonymous said... I've said it before and I'll say it again - some people just shouldn't be allowed to breed. Period. April 11, 2006 5:27 PM

11. Anonymous said... @ ohh man! - If YOUR nanny drops the kid on the floor, it is YOUR fault. You hired her. And -Nobody is blaming K-Fed because everyone knows he doesn't take care of his kids and he's never home. April 11, 2006 8:11 PM

12. That does not surprise me, poor child with parents like that hmmm Alexanderina April 11, 2006 10:56 am

13. some other sites are suggesting that the baby suffered a skull fracture after falling out of a high chair. I hope he’s ok. punkpie April 11, 2006 11:01 am

14. That is terrible Alexanderina April 11, 2006 11:03 am

15. About this whole Britney/baby Sean incident, personally I think CPS should have caught up with her after using her lap as a carseat. There is absolutely NO EXCUSE for that! p.s. Will you marry me Popsugar? thedrywallgirl April 11, 2006 11:36 am

16. I can’t believe people are feeling sorry for Britney. Kids fall all the time, but not from such a far height that they fracture their skulls! Obviously someone wasn’t attending to him carefully when he wasn’t completely strapped in. I doubt protective services will do anything, but I certainly don’t feel sorry for Britney. People say she is an extremely irresponsible parent, and she hasn’t done anything but prove them right. She’ll quit getting dogged on when she quits making bad choices. She isn’t the only parent who is followed by paparazzi. juju April 11, 2006 11:44 am

17. Gonzo said... I am surprised. No, really. Six days...As if this kid needed any additional strikes against him. A fractured skull??? With those genes?!? CPS and State-Assisted Living are his only chances at normalcy. Unlike her t-shirts, her career is so going ...April 11, 2006 3:22 PM

18. Yeah - I mean a kid doesn’t just fall from a highchair. I mean he is 7 months right so he can sit up and maybe roll around on the floor, but he couldn’t be strong enough to knock over the highchair on his own. Someone screwed up here - God loveteh poor child - I hope they have to go to parenting classes or something to learn how to put a child in a highchair and in a car seat. JennyJen April 11, 2006 12:03 pm

19. um hello they don’t just fall! high chairs have safety straps nowadays! And who just leaves their kidd sitting in a high chair anyways?! armoem April 11, 2006 12:31 pm

20. I guess we really don’t know all the surrounding circumstances w/ his fall, but assuming that he just fell out of a high chair - that is not something that just happens. If the kid was strapped in there properly then he wouldn’t be going anywhere. This and the lap thing aren’t just little “new parent” mistakes - they’re a total lack of basic common sense. I’m starting to think that it’s a good thing she’s constantly followed, it might be to Sean’s benefit that people are watching her every (stupid) move. Jesss April 11, 2006 12:34 pm

21. Poor little guy. It took six days before Britney realized there was a problem with the baby before she ‘panicked’ and rushed him to the hospital? Six days??? Maybe that’s the reason they’re getting investigated.

22. I hope Britney and her husband are required to take parenting classes…hopefully, they can fit them in between all the partying and traveling. And thankfully, at this time, it doesn’t appear she’s expecting another toy..oops, I mean child. Britney needs to back off on the reported comeback efforts and cancel all professional appearances. grinella April 11, 2006 12:48 pm

23. Poor little guy. I know at least when I was a baby they didn’t have all the safety measures that they have now. So I don’t think there is any reason this should have happened. And honestly if it happened to my kids I would have gone straight to the hospital! armoem April 11, 2006 12:53 pm

24. If it took them 6 days to go to the hospital, that’s wrong. I would have gone straight there as well. Babies are too fragile to risk it even if you “think” they are okay. That only makes me think there was a reason they didn’t go - like they didn’t want to explain what happened.

25. I am completely and utterly disgusted by this! I don’t care who you are or what you do for a living, but the mistakes that many have attributed to Britney being a “new mom” or it happening to anyone are a complete disregard for the child’s safety. It just shows that tons of money cannot purchase perhaps the most basic thing in life: Common sense. mirellarenee April 11, 2006 1:16 pm

26. I don’t want to judge…because babies do fall…but this is the second irresponsible incident Britney has had with her son. First the front seat of the car thing, and now the baby falling from a high chair… It just makes me wonder. Skye April 11, 2006 1:52 pm

27. I’m sure she will blame it on the nanny (or should I say nannies, as we all know this chick does not PARENT her child…She just wanted to show Shar that she was fertile, too. Dumb!) Poor Sean…we’ll hear the real story in twenty to thirty years when he pens his tell-all. JD April 11, 2006 1:57 pm

28. Poor sweetie! My goodness, it wouldn’t have been anything to think about other than getting my kid to the hospital to make sure all was alright. I bet they’d waste no time getting up off their butts if they ran out of cigarettes! bamz9LOVE April 11, 2006 2:45 pm

29. Yeah kids fall all the time, but the kid apparently fell some distance, and even if not, why chance it by not taking him to the doctor if not the hospital? He’s still considered in the infant stage and more fragile. bamz9LOVE April 11, 2006 2:48 pm

30. Are you kidding me? Falling from a high chair WITH A NANNY!!! BS!! Something is up with this chick. She does not deserve to have a baby!! She is reckless with the car incident.. and now this.. what will it take before someone steps in? Where the hell is this girls mother? Just because BRIT WAS A CELEB.. WAS… does not mean she should be given special treatment. GOD HELP THIS BABY!!!!!!! whatever04 April 11, 2006 3:16 pm

31. This incident is going to HURT her career even more so. she has no common sense whatsover.

YOU CAN BET SHE WILL GIVE AN INTERVIEW IN PEOPLE MAGAZINE AND GIVE A LAME  EXPLANATION AND WANT PITY BOUT HER WOES OF BEING A FIRST TIME MOTHER….THAT ISSUE COMING SOON!!!

anytime something goes wrong she puts it all out in that magazine...we dont care bout what she has to say, we know she’s an idiot.

i can see her PUTTING 100% BLAME ON THE NANNY TO COVER HAS BUTT FROM PUBLIC RIDICULE...SHE'S AN UNFIT MOTHER. flower April 11, 2006 4:31 pm

32. Sean is 7 months old and falls from his highchair…hmmmmmm. Sounds fishy to me, neglect sounds more like it. That poor child. saavedra April 11, 2006 5:13 pm

33. Kinda off topic but not, the same thing happened to my neighbor a couple of years ago. Her and her husband we’re arguing in a different room while the baby was in the high chair (they didn’t want to argue in front of him) and then they heard a thunk and the baby crying. She called 911 and the ambulance came and the police took statements. Two days later her son died and the cops are arresting her because they’re saying the baby had shaken baby syndrome. She went to the county jail and her husband had to sell his car for her bail. Long story short she finally got out of jail, the case was dropped because the baby had no petechial hemorrhaging which is always evident in shaken babies and all the “evidence” that the prosecution had conviently dissapeared when my neighbor’s lawyers asked for it.

The point of the story besides that fact that I wanted to talk about corrupt government is that there’s always an investigation. Posted by Kathryn  on  04/11  at  03:26 PM

34. It’s not her fault.  Nothing bad ever is.  IF this is true, they’ll come out with some story that will absolve Britney. Posted by phantomgrl  on  04/11  at  03:45 PM

35. Britney and K. Fed. are probably 2 of the most “gag me with a spoon” human beings alive. Hahahaha. Wow. Posted by neebeanz  on  04/11  at  04:52 PM

36. If my child would have fallen out of her high chair and hit her head hard i would have taken her to the ER the day it happened not days later. What an idiot, yeah i know mistakes happen but I have a 15 month old and first rule is dont leave your children unattended!!!! DUH! And after that driving thing.. maybe she should be investigated by DHS. Posted by ugot2bekiddinme  on  04/11  at  06:03 PM - Pop Sugar

Britney's Acting Bombs

Pic above features Britney's expression when she saw the ratings and reviews (kidding).

Britney Spears’ mocking Republican TV show character goes down in flames:

“Britney Spears Fails to Amuse - 86% of viewers thought she wasn't funny in a new episode of Will and Grace sitcom. Britney Spears' guest appearance on Will & Grace has failed to impress. In a survey, 86% of viewers thought Britney Spears wasn't funny.

Britney Spears played a lesbian talk show host in an episode, which recently aired in the States. She was playing a conservative Republican character.” – Sky UK

Britney And K-Fed Offend Little People

"Britney Spears threw a birthday party for her husband and his beautiful diamond earrings. There was surprise entertainment in store for all in attendance, and that entertainment came in the form of people, but smaller.

When it came time to carry out the cake, it was accompanied by two dwarf women. There were two other dwarves in attendance - also entertainment - dressed in the guise of Sonny and Cher. Insiders reported comments from party goers who suggested everyone engage in the age old drunken sleaze tradition of dwarf tossing. All the dwarves in the room were fine with the comments, they were probably too busy thinking of tomorrow's new rolex to be bothered.

A representative of The Billy Barty Foundation - a dwarf association of sorts - said:

"It is wicked to hurl abuse at anyone of diminished height simply because they are small. We know dwarves and midgets who are immense in stature because of their talent. Mostly they are able to rise above any insults. But inevitably, feelings are hurt by nasty comments. There's only one word for it - bullying." – Heckler Spray

K-Fed to be K-Sued? 

K-Fed, like his wife, jacked a beat now a writer wants to jack him for doing it:

"K-Fed may face lawsuit for plagiarisation - Even though Kevin Federline hasn’t released his debut album, he is now facing a potential lawsuit for plagiarisation.

New wave pioneer Thomas Dolby says he's contemplating legal action against Britney's other half for allegedly sampling Dolby's 1983 hit "She Blinded Me with Science" without permission.

"You can't just take a very well-known piece of music and add your own vitriolic rap over the top of it and get away with it," Eonline! quoted Dolby as telling MTV.

Dolby probably wouldn't have given permission to use the song to Britney Spears husband even if he had been asked. "I wouldn't have turned it down because of who he is," he said. "I know nothing about him, quite frankly, and just because he gets a bad rap in the press doesn't make him a bad guy. But just on the merits of the song, I would have said no… The lyrics are pretty evil, and I just don't think it was appropriate."

K-Fed Disagrees With My Assessment That He Is A Pimp

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K-Fed screencap

K-Fed disagrees with my assessment that he is a pimp. Last month I called K-Fed a pimp in this Column, but someone, er K-Fed, took the joke out of context.

Last month I wrote in the Column:

"Black people and Kevin Federline (who may technically be a Negro) we’ve got to give up the pimping. The pimping must cease, people." - March 31, 2006

Two weeks later dude did an interview and said:

"I'm not no pimp. I'm just Kevin. Happy husband. Happy father. I didn't pimp Britney. I found love." - Contact Music , April 19, 2006

Yes Kevin, you're not no pimp (you're "not no" grammar master either). It was a joke. Notice I said we, including myself with other black people (and I'm certainly not a pimp). It was a black joke, not a pimp joke. Keep up! I wasn't calling you a pimp per se, I was joking about your, um, nigrescence.

OK, why am I even explaining this.

2006 Album

Critics and bloggers are already gearing up for K-Fed's album with anticipation:

“Thanks to Kevin Federline and his new "drop," come August, we’ll all be polishing our guns.” - Jossip

 

CELEBRITY Paris Hilton 

Paris wearing the hobo chic look?

Paris Hilton Says She’s A Icon Con 

"I loved doing it (the album). I've always had a great voice. I'm an icon. You either have it or you don't. It's something you're born with." - Elle

"An icon"? Being an instant messenger icon doesn’t count!...And the jury is still out on your singing.  

Paris Slams Nicole Ritchie Again 

Boy, if I didn’t know better I’d think Paris took a hit and then did the interview with Elle magazine, which produced the following additional delusional, self-regarding quotes: 

“Hilton Blasts Richie Again- Hilton says, "She cannot stand being around me because I get all the attention and people really don't care about her. 

"It breaks my heart. She was my sister. She was the funniest, best person to be around and then she let fame go to her head." She's not the same person any more. I never want to speak to her again -- ever." 

The 25-year-old socialite is also determined to break the rules of her TV contract and escape working with Richie again in a possible fifth series. 

She adds, "We're under contract, but I don't want to do it. They want to do it with just me, but we're both under contract together. 

"She has nothing else so she really wants to do it, but I don't. It's really pathetic that she needs to use my name to sell something because she's obviously not enough. 

"I've been best friends with her since I was 2, but when I brought her onto my show, she got very jealous and turned on me for no reason." 

Of Richie's recent weight loss, Hilton laments, "That's not normal. I can't believe it. She looks horrible. It's really sad." – San Francisco Chronicle 

“Fame went to her head”? Look who’s talking Ms. Paris “I’ll destroy you” Hilton, who threatens members of the public and spews enough racial slurs to qualify for instant membership to the KKK. Paris Hilton’s fame is not really fame. It is a byproduct of her being a porn star.     

Public Feedback: 

1. Paris really shouldn't knock anyone, she has had enough Greek seamen in *** *** to start her own navy. Posted By: Da_Truff | April 04 2006 at 03:09 PM

2. Paris is looking OLD at 25. She needs surgery. Start on her mouth. Wire it shut. Posted By: Turker Baster | April 04 2006 at 03:10 PM

3. When a pale flamingo says YOU look "horrible," something has gone terribly wrong in your life. Like seriously - eat a sandwich or something. Posted By: Lizardking | April 04 2006 at 03:17 PM 

4. I like how Paris says "Fame went to her head" ... really, doesn’t Nicole know that the world revolves around Paris, and not her? That what the world wants is MORE Paris Hilton? Its sad that Nicole just doesn't get it. Whats the matter with her?

What, she wants to be her own person or something? Meanwhile Nicole can just sit back and say one word: herpes. Posted By: hellyeahman | April 04 2006 at 03:27 PM

5. Paris just needs to build some good PR about how great and awesome she is compared to others before she has to pay out millions of bucks for being a liar. Posted By: Amalea | April 04 2006 at 03:53 PM

6. Nobody cares about Nicole Richie, just go away, Paris is better than you in everywhere you skinny whore. Posted By: Hallie86 | April 04 2006 at 03:22 PM

7. Um, H8 6, you'd betta ready yourself, cuz this truly ain't iluvparis.com. And I'm being gentle. Posted By: leilah | April 04 2006 at 03:53 PM

8. hallie - are you thirteen yet? do your parents know you are using the internet? Posted By: ahhhhowcute | April 04 2006 at 03:54 PM

9. Next thing Paris will blame Richie for her herpes problem. This is great PR for their next show. Posted By: lollipopman | April 04 2006 at 04:01 PM

10. Paris has a big head and is such a non-celebrity. I love how she seems to be everywhere for doing absolutely nothing. She is a waste of the air she breathes and the space she takes up. Posted By: lulibelle | April 04 2006 at 04:06 PM

11. Paris talks like a 4 year old. Based on that interview, she seems incapable of compound sentences. Posted By: joanofsnark | April 04 2006 at 04:28 PM

12. This is great. please continue. I have popcorn. Posted By: thegame | April 04 2006 at 04:29 PM

13. Um......I'm lost...What does PARIS do for a living??? Posted By: MaisyCat | April 04 2006 at 04:40 PM 

14. her last name is hilton, that is all you need know. Posted By: mouye | April 04 2006 at 04:52 PM 

Paris Slammed By Alec Baldwin As Dumb 

"Actor Alec Baldwin has slammed socialite Paris Hilton for making a sex tape with Rick Salomon, insisting she was "dumb" and should have known better.

'The cooler' star claims he doesn't find Hilton attractive and is shocked by her lack of common sense.

He explains: "When I did 'The cat in the hat' I had a scene with her. She was lovely, very sweet.

"But she decides to make a video with a guy whose lack of ethics wafts off him like cologne, who you can see from 50 feet away is trash? She puts the 'd in 'dumb'." - Ireland Online

Paris Lying...Again 

“Paris Hilton tells Elle magazine about her own magnificence: "You either have it or you don't. It's something you're born with. I'm a brand, a model, an artiste, an actress, a designer. I write books." – Canada.com 

She’s a liar, is what she is. She can’t even spell Jermeny Germany and is trying to tell us she wrote a book. Can you say ghostwriter.  

FAKE JOURNALISTS Page Sux Being Probed By The FBI

The Post Is Toast - well at least from now on their credibility is. -Aisha Smirking- 

Last month via the Column I asked their sister company journalist Roger "lie for a living" Friedman if he’d ever been paid to place defamatory, libelous stories (he defamed me on the Fox News site, even though he knew the truth).

Turns out his co-workers at the New York Post Toast are on the hot seat right now for doing just that. Therefore, my questions weren't so far off, now were they. They were spot on.

Does Rupert Murdoch not pay you lot enough that you have to resort to extortion and paid acts of defamation of character and libel?

In the February 2006 Column I wrote:

“It’s amazing, the Paris Hilton libel case regarding a fabricated, defaming item that was deliberately placed in the New York Post (Page Six), and a recently placed Madonna/Liz Rosenberg item in said paper (Page Six again) reveal the Post will print anything a celebrity and or their publicist tells them to - even if it is an item derived from illegally obtained material.” - Sound Off Column, February 28, 2006

I wrote that back in February for a reason. More on that later.

The Post have now been accused of extorting billionaire supermarket mogul Ron Burkle. Coincidentally, I read another article months ago where it was also alleged that Pellicano illegally recorded Ron Burkle and while former President Bill Clinton was a guest at his Beverly Hills home.

“The columnist, of course, is Jared Paul Stern, who was caught on tape instructing supermarket tycoon Ron Burkle that if he wanted to ensure better play in the Post's notoriously sharp-elbowed gossip column, Page Six, than Burkle could start by paying Stern $240,000 annually in sort of protection money.” – Yahoo News

$240,000 per year. That’s rich. Literally. What a crook. That villainous little Column has found ways to subsidize their paychecks.

One thing is evident, the entertainment industry (including some members of the press) have lost their ever loving minds. If they're not wiretapping and threatening people, they are extorting people.

Note to Rupert Murdoch: Why do you constantly let your so called journalists from Victoria Newton at the Sun Newspaper to Page Sux to Roger Friedman at Fox News (which I used to like before him), violate people’s rights and criminally so, while you look the other way.

There has to be some accountability here. And it starts with you. If you didn’t regularly condone the criminal misconduct, it couldn’t continue to happen. But you do and it speaks very badly of you.

Your journalists are breaking the law and harming innocent people - and you let them do it carte blanche. It reflects very poorly on you, as you have the ability to stop it, but you continue to sign these lawbreakers pay checks anyway.  

If someone did the things to you, your ex-wife, your current wife and your children what your worthless newspapers regularly do to others, you would be furious.

But like people who do not care, it’s okay as long as it puts money in your pocket and its not happening to you and your family.

It is my prayer that God will allow the same circumstances in your life and that of your family that you regularly allow your unethical, perverse writers to subject innocent people to.

Maybe, just maybe then, it will come home to you that looking the other way to this despicable conduct is morally wrong, ungodly and repugnant - so is signing the paychecks of these newspaper bullies, giving them a media outlet and free reign to harass, extort and invade the privacy of innocent citizens, violate copyrights and destroy reputations that do not deserve to be destroyed. Amen.

Funniest Quotes:

Instead of Page Six they are now being called “Paid Six” and “Payola Six.”

“But six figures for a power figure to buy a gossipist's favor? That would be a new wrinkle that, if made public, would be hard to Botox…A simple business proposition: You scratch my back, I won't scratch your eyes out.” - Time Magazine

“Proving once again that the "News" in Fox News is not meant to be taken literally, the Rupert Murdoch-owned news channel has all but ignored the stunning story of the New York City gossip columnist who tried to extort nearly $250K out of a business mogul--a gossip columnist who happened to work for the Rupert Murdoch-owned New York Post.” – Yahoo News

“But in case you missed all the Page Six controversy, it is possible that all these Paris mentions could simply be some paid off deal between the two. Hmmmm.” - Popsugar

The Serious Quotes About The Scandal:

“Those who said they know what is on the tape said Mr. Stern named Harvey Weinstein, the co-founder of Miramax films, and Ronald O. Perelman, the chairman of Revlon Inc., as among those who had finessed their coverage on the page.” -  NY Times

“NEW YORK (Reuters) - Rupert Murdoch's New York Post, famed for aggressive reporting and salacious gossip, said on Friday the FBI was investigating allegations that one of its columnists demanded money to keep stories about a billionaire out of the paper.

“Stern, 35, became the story himself Friday after it was revealed the FBI videotaped him allegedly offering to protect Los Angeles investor Ron Burkle from damaging coverage in the Post's popular Page Six column. The reported price: payments that would amount to $220,000 over the span of a year. People familiar with the investigation said Stern made the offer at two meetings with Burkle, who had protested a series of Page Six items, one of which described him as a "party-boy billionaire.

Stern, a freelancer who worked two days a week as one of a handful of contributors to Page Six, was suspended Thursday afternoon after an assistant U.S. attorney told lawyers for the New York Post that they had tapes of Stern in an apparent extortion attempt."

At the meeting, the Daily News reported, Stern sketched out three "levels of protection" from damaging Page Six coverage. "Level one" protection, Stern said, would involve passing on tips about other celebrities, thereby becoming a source. Additional help could come from hiring other Post staffers, he reportedly said.

Burkle finally asked Stern, "How much do I need to pay you to make this stop? I need level one, level two protection, level three protection." Then Burkle asked, "How much do you want?" After a pause, Stern said, "Um, $100,000 to get going, and month to month $10,000." At a second meeting, on March 31, Burkle asked Stern to reassure him that there would be no more requests for money. Spokeswomen for the FBI and the U.S. Attorney's office declined comment.” – Reuters


“Both Mr. Sherman and people at The New York Post said there was astonishment in their newsrooms over the severity of the ethical and potentially legal breaches that Mr. Stern was alleged to have committed. Over the weekend, Mr. Stern said, "I can't defend my lack of judgment here."

It is Mr. Murdoch, after all, who has made it a personal priority over the last three decades to try to snatch the circulation crown from The Daily News, despite the fact that The Post represents a very small cog in his $54 billion media empire. The Post is also the only newspaper he still owns in North America.

Mr. Zuckerman's camp has argued that The Daily News has managed to stay profitable while competing against a money-losing, subsidized rival that exists to further the interests of its owner, Mr. Murdoch.

While The Post has reportedly had annual losses in recent years of some $40 million..." - New York Times

The Daily News shouldn't celebrate just yet, as there is corruption at their paper as well, that is on the wrong side of the law. Not to mention, any paper with Lloyd Grove on board has nothing to cheer about. I don't know who is more pathetic, him or Roger Friedman.

Moving on to another cruddy journalist from the News Corp organized crime family of so called writers...

FAKE JOURNALISTS Victoria Newton

"Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, is looking for a possible heir to her throne" - Hollywood Reporter

Elvira need look no further than the Sun's Victoria Newton, gossip columnist and all around privacy invader, who naturally bares a startling resemblance to Elvira year round:

Victoria "Posh" Beckham (left) Victoria "Elvira" Newton (right)

Top Of The Pops (BBC): "Is Posh happy posing with Victoria Newton? Or is she really thinking: "Ugh! Can I go now?"

It should be the latter.

MUSIC Rapper Proof Killed 

Rapper and Eminem band mate Proof was gun down after shooting a man in the head during a game of pool in a club operating out of hours. Words were exchanged and he shot an army officer in the head and was then shot by the club's bouncer. Both Proof and the man he shot have died. He leaves behind a wife and five, count'em, 5 kids.

Definitely a senseless tragedy. Is rap still that volatile and filled with anger that people are being killed in senseless ways (rhetorical). This cannot be the standard anymore. It must stop.

Two people are dead and for what? An argument escalating out of control and guns getting pulled. This is tragic, as his life and the army officer's is gone and over foolishness.

His wife and five children are left to mourn him after dying at age 32 over a meaningless pool game. It is absolutely senseless.

MUSIC Madonna Lawsuit

Update on the lawsuit:

1. The Federal court in Miami sent my appeal to the wrong Appeals Court (Washington, D.C.). They further mailed me the wrong form to fill out right after (from the Miami Federal Court) as well .

This has cost more time and given the miscreant defendants in the case more time to violate more U.S. and United Nations laws at my expense. The Washington judge had to officially send the case to the Atlanta Appeals Court, which covers said jurisdiction.

I filed the Appeals Brief by the deadline date issued at docketing (April 27, 2006) and was told by an Atlanta Appeals clerk that it will take 2 months after they receive it for the Court's reply. I also requested the option of arguing the appeal.

2. There have been errors in this case in the Miami Federal court. One too many. Just like someone in the Court amazingly misspelled the name “Madonna” in the computer system so that anyone who searches for the case WON’T FIND IT. Good thing I put it on line, then.

It’s amazing, they managed to spell all the other names right, including my difficult to spell name and others, but spelled Madonna incorrectly in the title "Madoona."

Not to mention, the info online contradicts information and templates prescribed by the Federal Rules Of Civil Procedure.

3. My home was broken into again. This makes the fifth break-in since this whole Madonna commissioned harassment, invasion of privacy and intellectual property theft campaign began.

The latest break-in occurred on April 2, 2006. Work compact discs containing newer projects I have been working on such as copyrighted book manuscripts, lyrics, film scripts and other copyrighted works were stolen straight off my desk. I called the Police and they sent an officer out.

Further searches of my discs have revealed that other CD ROMs are missing as well and I know she is in criminal possession of them, as a week after I reported them missing to the Police, data from one of the CD ROMs showed up a week later in the form of an article in the New York Daily News attributed to Madonna and writers Joe Dziemianowicz and Rebbeca Louie.

They stole a pre-release copy of my book "50 Reasons Why Hollywood Stinks" (that was on several CD ROMs in my home office/recording studio) from my house and used it weeks before it is due to be published, which constitutes at least 3 felonies.

They have illegally used items from my book, altered others and attributed it all to Madonna and said writers in the New York Daily News. Instead of "50 Reasons," they cut it down to "5 Signs" and changed items to make it about Madonna when the book wasn't about her. However, items from my unpublished book are in that infringing article and got there in a very felonious manner.

The Kabbalah cult and Scientology cult are known for doing this. There are documented legal cases that have been made public where it was revealed that they stole advance copies of books before they went to the publishers and criminally misappropriated them in their favor, violating innocent writers rights and copyrights. Each case involved breaking an entry.

The leader of Madonna’s cult, Phillip Berg was sued for breaking into the home of a dead rabbi and stealing his book manuscript, which he illegally published under his own name, taking credit for something he did not author. The later filed lawsuit revealed what he had done – breaking an entry, trespassing and criminal copyright infringement. He lost the case.

There definitely will be litigation regarding this, along with the other defamation of character/libel lawsuits for the articles that lunatic placed in the Daily News with Lloyd Grove and with Roger Friedman's Fox News column in trying to lie about the sick things she's been doing.

I faxed the FBI about it including a copy of the article from the New York Daily News.

4. Forthcoming Britney Spears rip off - I wrote and copyrighted a song I wrote about my little sister called “My Sister" over a year and a half ago and it is apart of my copyrighted catalog of songs, scripts, videos, manuscripts ect - that the defendants in the case gain illegal access to.

Lo and behold, this month one of the defendants in my lawsuit, Britney Spears, released a clip of a rip off song from her forthcoming CD titled “For My Sister.” Yea that's a lot different from my song called "My Sister" you crook (sarcasm).

So Madonna is still acting like a hoodlum fencing stolen goods (my work) around Hollywood to the highest bidder, in acts that are criminal breaches of U.S. and U.N. laws.

Look for this case to go international in the near future and in a very ugly way.

Papers Report Madonna Marriage On The Rocks 

“Material union on the rocks, pa-in-law says - Madonna's father-in-law is speaking out about the state of his son's marriage to the Material Girl, and boy, is he ever a wellspring of information.” – Chicago Tribune 

Never mind she’s ruining his son’s life…

"Guy Ritchie is planning a men-only holiday with best mate Jason Stratham - further fuelling rumours his marriage to Madonna is on the rocks.

The 'Lock Stock' director has asked the actor, who has starred in two of his movies, to jet off to Chicago in May, where they are set to hook up with more friends and have an "action packed" break.

Friends of Guy and Madonna fear the month-long vacation with Kelly Brook's ex proves all is not well within the Ritchie household." - Female First UK

Meanwhile, a few local papers like the Miami Herald have been writing about Guy Ritchie in Miami for two weeks now in their weekly sightings columns, when he is supposed to be faking it at Madonna's side in L.A. The New York Post additionally reported he doesn't like it here in Miami...so why's he here then?

Madonna’s New Tour Bore

Once again, they are putting out more spin that her tour is selling out, much like they did with the last tour, when it was later revealed that they lied and the dates were not sold out.

"If you're a Madonna fan (are there still Madonna fans?) you'll be thrilled that the tour of North America kicks off here in LA, at the Forum, on May 21."  – Laist

Madonna and ET

In last month's Column, I commented that Madonna looks like ET with that forehead due to all that excessive hair bleaching. This month she's actually trying to become him for her tour according to the New York Daily News:

"It'll create a blinding light," says our snitch. "Like she's landing on the spaceship from 'E.T.'" 

Um, she is ET.

Copyright Infringing "American Dreamz" Flops

In last month's Column I asked the public not to go see "American Dreamz":

"BOYCOTT THE MOVIE "AMERICAN DREAMZ - It is one of the films ripped off from my copyrights that are apart of the lawsuit. For more read this month's Sound Off Column. Also continue to boycott Madonna's flopped rip off CD 'Confessions On A Dance Floor.' Thank you." March 31, 2006

Thanks to all of you who didn’t go see that turd of a movie that the incompetent, untalented Paul Weitz turned my script into that he got from Madonna – and illegally might I add. Both work for Warner Bros and both should be in jail for what they did.

"American Dreamz" BOMBED at the box office this month in the same range as Basic Instinct 2, the official flop of the year (so far that is). They're gonna wish that stinker wasn't on their resumes. A movie like "American Dreamz" can kill a career.

I spent years working on that script that they criminally stole and turned into rubbish (I started it in 1998). Madonna, Paul Weitz & co are absolute idiots. They know nothing about filmmaking. All they know how to do is rip off hard working people. They offensively take people's labor for granted, like I'm some sort of slave. 

For now, it is some consolation after the criminal way they ripped me off, that the film bombed - and in such a huge way.

Rotten Tomatoes, whose site is how I found out that my script was not just stolen, but criminally stolen via the Weitz brothers who are Warner Bros and Madonna affiliates, this month called “American Dreamz” a “lazy rip-off.” And that it was. They did a complete, detailed review of it months ago and it was what alerted me to what that sicko had done.

The film starred, Dennis “Russell Crowe upsets me” Quaid and Mr. Hugh “oral sex from prostitutes in public parked cars” Grant and lets not forget Mandy “false humility” Moore.

What they turned my script into is offensive, disgusting, unpatriotic, sacrilegious and sub par - and it is just that they'll never be able to get that bombtastic movie off their resumes, it will erode the kind of work they can get in the future and they will forever be associated with it once all the details are revealed and the case goes international:

“And the biggest upset this week is the new release American Dreamz coming in at a pathetic #8 for it's opening weekend.” – movies online


“Another wide release, Universal's American Dreamz, didn't receive much interest from moviegoers as it opened in the eighth spot with just $3.7 million from 1,500 theaters.” Coming Soon


“The Hugh Grant-Dennis Quaid comedy grossed an estimated $3.7 million (eighth place) on 1,500 screens for an unimpressive $2,467 per-screen average.” E!


“The weekend's other new major debut, Universal's George W. Bush-"American Idol" parody "American Dreamz" featuring Dennis Quaid and Hugh Grant, debuted a weak No. 8 with $3.7 million.” – AP 


"Another wide release, Universal's American Dreamz, didn't receive much interest from moviegoers as it opened in the eighth spot with just $3.7 million from 1,500 theaters." -ComingSoon.net 


"The only other major newcomer, American Dreamz, was a disappointment." – USA Today 


They did that movie so wrong it’s not even funny. They deserve it for criminally buying stolen goods from Mafioso Madonna.

And the studio is gonna take a bath on that one too. They spent all that money on the movie $20,000,000 and spent all that money on advertising/marketing $30,000,000, only for it to bomb in such a bad way…and will have to face international charges and lawsuits over it, anyway. Looks like you got the short end of the stick.

Sadly, so will the IRS when these idiots attempt to write off their criminal misconduct.

Edgar Bronfman Fluff Piece 

A real fluff piece on Edgar “Company Killer” Bronfman jr appeared in Business 2.0. It was about he and his co-thief Madonna (oh, what a coincidence). Guess their fragile egos have taken a bruising of late. An interesting quote from the article: 

“If he can transform Warner into a digital power, what he likes to call a "music-based content company," Bronfman, now 50, will have remade a checkered record as a strategist and manager. 

The flip side, of course, is that if he fails, both Warner and Bronfman's reputation as a businessman will simply fade out.” - Business 2.0. 

Old habits die hard and he’s still doing all the unethical and unwise things that brought about his initial fall – his demise years ago - that those involved with have yet to recover from and neither has he. Once again, history is repeating itself.

Edgar Losing Money Again

Edgar Bronfman on the phone cooking up another dirty deal  

“EDGAR'S INVESTMENT BLUES: The Financial Times reports that a series of high-profile investors, including Edgar Bronfman Jr., have lost close to $500m in Asprey & Garrard, the 225-year-old jeweler to the U.K.'s royal family. The company was resurrected after six weeks of "technical administration" by a N.Y. private equity firm, which has agreed to invest $80-100m to fund the group's expansion. Bronfman's SBS Partners, who had a 32% stake in the company, reportedly lost close to $170 million in the transaction. (3/31p)” – Hits Daily Double 

Edgar just keeps on losing money. It’s amazing. All the Jewish people I know are smart and good with their money. But not Edgar. Are you sure you’re Jewish? You sure you’re not mixed with something.

Edgar Bronfman sr

Bronfman sr. is said to be baffled at his his son's uncanny gift for losing money...and a chunk of their family fortune his immigrant dad built up on a "shady prohibition business."

Edgar Slammed For Pressuring Apple

Steve Jobs of Apple maker of iPod and iTunes

Edgar Bronfman jr tried to take a bite out of Apple and Apple bit back. He wanted a cut of iPod’s sales. Uh, that sounds like extortion. You had nothing to do with the actual machinery or concept behind the iPod. That’s just greedy. 

What’s next, you gonna go to Panasonic and demand a cut of their walkman and discman sales because they played music/CDs by Warner Bros on them. You’re clearly losing your grip on reality and fairness.   

You didn’t make the iPod, it made you (since you took over Warner Music) and helped put some money in your bank account (you know, mingled with the dirty money you already had from your label stealing from innocent hard working people like me). 

Here’s hoping Spitzer pimp slaps you again. Somebody needs to slap some sense into you.  

From the Chicago Tribune’s Features Blog: 

Money (That's What They Want) - Originally posted: April 3, 2006 

As if we needed more evidence that the major record labels still think the road to success is paved with greed and contempt for consumers, now comes a story that the big companies are feuding with Apple Computer over the cost of downloads on Apple’s iTunes music store.

The labels – surprise – want to raise prices above the standard 99 cents per download, arguing that a premium should be placed on new releases and popular artists. Apple chief executive Steve Jobs has publicly advocated holding the line.

The Associated Press reports that the labels currently collect about 70 cents per download. Here’s a hunch: Most distributors would be happy to pocket more than 70 percent of the retail price of its product.

Yet the story reports that Warner Music Group Corp. CEO Edgar Bronfman Jr. argued last fall that the labels also should get a cut of iPod sales.

Actually, the labels should be delivering weekly rose bouquets to Apple for finding a way to make lots of money through the legal online distribution of music; Nielsen Soundscan reported that 353 million digital tracks were sold in the U.S. last year. That 70 cents-per-download certainly has helped the companies during the past five years of declining CD sales, which occurred as the labels continued raising prices and fighting the downloaders rather than nurturing better artists and exploring the new technologies.

Consumers are happy. Big companies are reaping huge profits. Yup, time to mess it all up.

Public Feedback:

1. Yep, the music industry is determined to punish its customers! Talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face (or if you don't like that cliche, how about killing the goose that lays the golden eggs?), what we have here is a case of ginormous egos run amuck. Not only do we have to put up with the major labels no longer offering anything remotely resembling musical innovation and variety at high prices (just who gets how much per physical CD sold anyhow?), but now they think that Apple owes them something?

For years I've held off on illegal downloads, just thinking it wasn't "right" but who is the bigger crook here? Them, or those who went the Napster et al route? I'm beginning to rethink my POV in piracy issues cause the black patches those clowns at Warner are wearing are definitely obscuring their vision. Posted by: R Nystrom | Apr 3, 2006 3:41:31 PM

2. Yes, they are stupid. If they bully Apple, or Apple complies willingly, to raise the price over 99cents, they are only going to screw themselves. I for one would not buy any more songs from Apple, and probably would just share with my friends. I hope the idiot music people get a clue and stop being greedy. They are diggin their own grave, and I hope to be at the funeral. Posted by: Lou | Apr 3, 2006 5:40:09 PM

3. They can raise the rates all they want, there are still alternatives. Thankfully, the Riaa can't control sites based outside the United States. (aka allofmp3.com, russia) Posted by: Dan | Apr 3, 2006 5:44:30 PM

4. I haven't gone the download individual song route with my music, because I just don't have the computer space or an ipod. I think it's insane for consumers to pay a higher price for trendy music downloads. If they raise the price they are just going to go back to forcing people to get their downloads illegaly. I think $.99 is reasonable considering most CDs cost $15 and contain about 15 songs. Actually, they're already getting a better deal since they don't have to pay marketing fees, packaging, etc.

I commend Steve Jobs for sticking to his original recommendation and not going with the corporate greedy pigs.Posted by: Terri | Apr 3, 2006 6:05:01 PM

George Clooney And Warner Sued Over Stealing Syriana Script

Clooney: "I cant wait to see steal your films."

This case is something else. A Jordanian woman who specializes in Middle East studies, has sued George Clooney and Warner Bros. Remember in last month’s column I wrote how he had dinner with Madonna after his long winded, untruthful speech on Hollywood helping blacks, when I am proof they criminally rip off blacks. This month they've been busted again...and with Clooney.

So much for your phony Oscar speech, then. I didn't buy it last month and I don't buy it this month.

Warner Bros and their artists have turned Copyright Infringement into an art form. In regards to this latest lawsuit against them, they have issued their standard denial: 

"We believe it is without merit and (we) will defend our position in court" - Warner Bros

Oh shut up, already. You say every case against you is “without merit.” The world could catch you red handed (and they have) and you’d still release that same old trite sound bite that no one believes anymore. 

"Vergniault, a specialist on geopolitics in the Middle East, claims that she worked on a script titled "Oversight" from 1997-2003, registering it with the French copyright body SACD in September 2004 and copyrighting it in the U.S. a month later. The script tells the story of a former CIA agent who is reassigned by the organization to reactivate an underground network in Afghanistan for the benefit of an American oil company.

"I have read the book by former CIA agent Robert Baer that is supposed to have inspired the story, and there is nothing in it that remotely resembles the scenes taken straight from my script," she said. - Reuters

How many times are Warner Bros and their artists going to deliberate violate United Nations laws and create international incidents by going into foreign countries (England, France, Belgium and Jamaica to name a few) and steal stuff that doesn't belong to them. As if ripping off Americans isn't horrible enough (and looking at the court docket you've ripped off many Americans), why are you creating these international incidents criminally stealing intellectual property abroad - offending foreign governments, agencies and companies. Nothing good can come of it.

It’s ironic, two months ago I was saying to someone, I noticed a pattern of litigants whose works were ripped off by the same people in Hollywood, abandoning the U.S. Court system as Hollywood has so corrupted it. A lot of writers and artists who have been ripped off by Hollywood are opting to sue in foreign countries where they feel their chances at getting justice is greater. This is a noticeable pattern that's been happening.  

However, there is still the chance that Hollywood will get on the ball and spread its corruption abroad in trying to corrupt foreign judges as they do here, because those lawsuits are gonna stick like glue outside the U.S. in territories where Hollywood does business.  

It will be interesting to watch the reaction of the public in foreign countries when they take that abroad and see Hollywood attempt to corrupt their judicial systems. The natives will not be happy and you will see it reflected in your ticket sales, or lack thereof. 

It’s going to end up defining Hollywood to the world. All the PR in the world won’t be able to fix it. So continue to destroy the industry with your greed and laziness.  

“PARIS (Hollywood Reporter) - A French screenwriter living in Jordan has sued Warner Bros. Pictures, George Clooney's production company and writer-director Stephen Gaghan, alleging that their film "Syriana" plagiarized entire scenes and characters from a script she wrote several years ago. 

Stephanie Vergniault's case comes up for hearing Monday at the Paris High Court, said her attorney, Jasna Hadley Stark. The filmmakers are being sued for 2 million euros ($2.4 million) and damages, Stark said. 

Executives at Warner Bros. France said they were aware of the case but declined comment. A spokesman for Warners in the United States said, "While we have not seen a copy of this suit, we believe it is without merit and (we) will defend our position in court." 

"I live in a part of the world where we have no access to the latest films, and I would never have seen 'Syriana' if a friend of mine based in Los Angeles hadn't alerted me," Vergniault said Tuesday. 

"I saw the film entirely by accident, and I'm still in a state of shock that someone of the caliber of Stephen Gaghan could stoop so low. At least 15 to 20 scenes of the film -- the characters and how they develop, creative elements, the entire structure -- has been lifted directly from my script. I couldn't stop screaming when I first saw the film in a movie hall in L.A. First I thought I was going crazy, seeing my work on the screen, and then, when I realized what had happened, I was furious." 

Vergniault, a specialist on geopolitics in the Middle East, claims that she worked on a script titled "Oversight" from 1997-2003, registering it with the French copyright body SACD in September 2004 and copyrighting it in the U.S. a month later. The script tells the story of a former CIA agent who is reassigned by the organization to reactivate an underground network in Afghanistan for the benefit of an American oil company. 

"I have read the book by former CIA agent Robert Baer that is supposed to have inspired the story, and there is nothing in it that remotely resembles the scenes taken straight from my script," she said. 

Clooney received an Academy Award last month for his supporting role in the film, while Gaghan was nominated for his screenplay. He originally sought eligibility in the adapted screenplay category, but the Academy switched him to the original screenplay race. 

Upon learning of the switch in January, Gaghan said he did veer from Baer's memoir, "See No Evil: The True Story of a Ground Soldier in the CIA's War on Terrorism," and conducted a great deal of original research that he incorporated into the script, but still considered it an adapted screenplay.” - Reuters/Hollywood Reporter 

Clooney Too Liberal

Clooney hurting liberals? Yea, he and Hollywood are doing a fine job of it. News Busters highlighted this fact via an interview he did with Katie Couric:

"Couric Concerned Clooney's Many Liberal Causes Dilute Darfur Drama

What's more, Katie even suggested that Clooney's advocacy of countless liberal causes might be diluting the brand.

...one can see how George came by his acting genes. There was manifestly much of the ham in Nick, with mega-star George surprisingly having to fight for air time.

In any case, toward the end of the interview, there was this surprising exchange.

Couric: "You [George] have been quite vocal on a number of issues: the environment, liberal causes, presidential politics. I am just wondering if you worry that your message is being diluted by kind of focusing on so many issues that people will be like 'there is Clooney again'?"

Clooney: "I try not to go after too many issues. I try to focus on a couple. I made some jokes about the administration over the years because I am an old liberal. I try to pick my fights."

Hmm. So not only does Katie peg Clooney as a liberal, but even intimates that his association with a variety of liberal causes could be a detriment in the current context. Interesting." - News Busters

Copyright Infringer Nick Cannon Was Busted Via His Pager And An Easy Password

Apparently Nick Cannon isn't the only thing that's easy - so is his password, which enabled his former girlfriend Christina Milian to crack his code and read his text messages that revealed he was cheating on her. His password was so easy, she got it on "the first guess."

TV Show "Conversations With Michael Eisner" Flops

Michael Eisner [Pic Courtesy of NLC]

It didn’t just flop. It belly flopped. The kind of belly flop that cleared out the pool…and TV rooms across the country. He even lost his lead in of hundreds of thousands of viewers from the previous show, dropping it into the 5 digits.

Aww...(fake sympathy).

As promoted pulverized and predicted by me in this Column for months, Michael Eisner’s show, “Conversations With Michael Eisner” tanked. It flopped so badly that he couldn’t pay people to watch it out of the millions he wrongfully got out of Disney shareholders. 

“Michael Eisner is not worth conversing with. Apparently, most people would rather talk to themselves than to Michael Eisner. [TV Newser]” - Jossip  


“It's not such a wonderful world for Eisner show Ex-Disney chief draws 95,000 in gabfest debut. For Michael Eisner, it's a small audience after all. 

Once one of the most feared executives in Hollywood, Eisner's new job as biweekly TV talk show host isn't giving Sean Hannity or Larry King much to worry about. 

Eisner tanked with the 6 p.m. Tuesday premiere of "Conversations With Michael Eisner," his new show for financial-news cable channel CNBC. 

"Conversations" drew just 95,000 total viewers — including 39,000 in the key 25-to-54 age cohort — according to Nielsen Media Research. 

The program lagged far behind its cable-news competitors, including Fox News' "Hannity & Colmes" (1.4 million viewers), CNN's "Larry King Live" (1.1 million), MSNBC's "Rita Cosby Live & Direct" (371,000) and Headline News' "Prime News Tonight" (292,000). 

But the Eisner debut was grim even by the network's standards.” – Calendar Live


“CNBC's Eisner Show Underperforms MEDIAWEEK - Mar 30, 2006 The first installment of CNBC’s bimonthly interview series, Conversations With Michael Eisner, earned the cable news channel decidedly mousey ratings ...” – Media Week


“Viewers Don't Listen To 'Conversations'

CNBC's Conversations with Michael Eisner is off to a poor start. 

Eisner lost most of his lead-in. At 8pm, CNBC's "Deal or No Deal" had an impressive 518,000 total viewers, with 245,000 in the demo. Eisner lost 82 percent of the total viewers, and 84 percent of the demo.” -  mediabistro.com 


“Are You A "High-Powered Decision Maker?" If Not, "Conversations" ...mediabistro.com, NY - Mar 30, 2006 Yesterday TVNewser reported that the premiere episode of CNBC's Conversations with Michael Eisner dumped most of its lead-in and scratched in P2+ and the demo” – mediabistro 


“A CNBC insider says: "Here's the problem: Nobody in the real world knows or cares who Eisner is. That still would be fine, except that he doesn't have the kind of personality anyone would watch. He's pretty self-centered, and is more interested in hearing his own voice and stories than those of his guest." Mediabistro 


“Talk show ratings tank for former Disney CEO. Eisner drew just 95,000 viewers for opening broadcast” - Los Angeles Times 


 "Conversations with Michael Eisner fails to find large audience. Tuesday evening held the premiere of the CNBC talk show Conversations with Michael Eisner, during which the former Disney CEO interviewed Martha Stewart, Bran Ferren, and Sir Howard Stringer. As reported by The Wall Street Journal [paid registration required], through Intercot's Discussion Boards, the show scored a 0.0 rating and 0 share on CNBC's Tuesday night lineup. Specifically, Conversations with Michael Eisner pulled in 95,000 viewers, 39,000 of them being adults ages 25-54.” – Animated News 


“Former Walt Disney Co. chief executive Michael Eisner's TV debut on CNBC was a bumpy ride. The first edition of "Conversations with Michael Eisner" on the business cable channel drew 96,000 viewers on Tuesday, according to Nielsen Media Research.” Indian Television 


“Michael Eisner Talk Show: It Is A Small World After All - Ex-Disney boss Michael Eisner debuted his own talk show last week, but ratings were very low, hardly registering on viewer survey scales. I guess it was so bad, anyone who sat around long enough to watch it had to be dopey. OK, maybe Sneezy, Grumpy and Doc saw it, too, but not too many others.” - Los Angeles Times 

I could have told them that for free. Actually, I did tell them that for free. Months ago did I not warn CNBC through this Column that this man’s interviewing skills would peel the glass off of a TV. 

Did I not warn CNBC that he stunk as an interviewer, as his stint as guest host of the Charlie Rose Show, unequivocally contained the worst interviewing skills displayed on television.  

Back in November of 2005 I wrote: 

“I watched an interview with Eisner on Charlie Rose - a show I have seen quite a few times. Eisner was filling in for Rose, while said host was on vacation, and I have to say...it was the worst, most awkward interview I have ever had the displeasure of watching.  

He asked Travolta questions that left him with a why-are-you-asking-me-that look on his face for much of the interview. It was awkward and uncomfortable with a great lack of continuity. It was the infomercial of interviews. 

Note to Charlie Rose: Don't you ever go on vacation again!” 

Yet they dumped all that money into his stinker of a show anyway. Talk about learning the hard way. 

Once again, as I wrote in the Column two months ago regarding NBC  after the Book of Daniel predictably flopped, “Who’s in charge of programming and more importantly why?”   

Other commentary this month questioning his interviewing skills after watching his show:

"So, Michael Eisner has his own talk show on CNBC and according to media reports it is one of the lowest rated debuts in talk show history. All of which begs the question: Just exactly how did Eisner, a man with absolutely no experience in talk show hosting get his own talk show?

I’d really like to know because I’ve been pitching talk shows and receiving rejection letters from network honchos for years now and in walks Eisner and lands his own show. It’s all so un-American.

While Eisner was busy running Disney into the ground, I was honing my interview skills on international TV…

But Eisner having his own talk show is a symptom of what is wrong with America lately. What happened to the good old days when people got hired because of their talent?

Come to think of it, all of this makes me wonder about the qualifications of Eisner’s son who directed the movie Sahara, despite having no previous experience to speak of as a film director." - Town Hall

More Disney Death Rides

  

Eisner and Iger [pic courtesy of USA Today]

Just how many men, women and children does Disney insisting on killing with their unsafe rides. Someone else has died on one of Disney's unsafe rides.

I've been writing about this for months and it's still happening. I wrote about it in the November 2005 and December 2005 Columns (said excerpts reprinted below). Nothing has changed in how Disney does business and I didn't believe they would change - and it's to their own detriment:

"Miami rapper Trick Daddy’s slogan is “Trick Love The Kids”...but does Disney Love The Kids. There have been so many lawsuits regarding kids injured and some dying on Disney rides and high levels of lead in Disney's Kids jewelry line, deemed very unsafe, to name a few. Here's an excerpt regarding the latest Disney ride death..." - November 30, 2005

Follow up to last month's Sound Off Column article about Disney ride deaths. This month, it was announced that Disney has settled a lawsuit for wrongful death. They admitted liability in the untimely death of 22-year-old Marcelo Torres, who was killed on a Disney rollercoaster.

You know what would be nice. If Disney got on the ball and this would stop happening, as settlements can’t bring back the deceased. The damage is done." - December 31, 2005

Every time they say these rides are safe and reopen them, someone else dies. They always blame it on the victim.  The latest death was a vacationing tourist from Germany:

“Disney Ride Reopens Day After Woman Dies -  The 49-year-old woman, who was not identified, reported dizziness and nausea after her ride Tuesday, Disney officials said. She was taken to Celebration Hospital, where she died Wednesday.  

It was the second death in less than a year related to the Epcot attraction, which has motion sickness bags and signs warning people with heart, back and neck problems not to ride. The popular attraction spins riders in a centrifuge that subjects them to twice the normal force of gravity, and is so intense that some riders have been taken to hospitals with chest pain. 

Disney also closed the ride in June after the death of a 4-year-old Pennsylvania boy who passed out while aboard the attraction. It was also reopened then when company engineers concluded it was operating normally.” – Yahoo News   

ENTERTAINMENT Excellence 

Ask Hollywood to define excellence and many of its denizens will furnish you with answers that will leave you stunned and questioning their sanity. The normal films come from other parts of the country and the world.

As mentioned in the last Column, polls show that the American public feels Hollywood is out of touch with them. And they are. It is a poll I emphatically agree with. 

Hollywood believes everyone else believes what they believe. A well-adjusted person would realize that not everyone shares the same views they do. Therefore, sometimes you must agree to disagree. But, not Hollywood. 

What is the impact on a town that is essentially a business, when they cling to such out of touch views. What does it do to the bottom line. It kills it, is what it does. When you are making movies for you and your brainwashed industry pals, it's stupid not to consider the rest of the country and the rest of the world that you hope to sell it to.  

TV AND FILM Ratings

 

Motion Picture Association

I think it's great that the MPA tries to rate films to guide consumers, but the rating system needs work. The labeling doesn't always tell you what's in the film and leaves a lot of surprised.

Some action films, westerns, documentaries (even the "Passion Of The Christ") got a rating/labeling for "violence," but these films weren't inappropriate.

However, some other films are labeled "violence," but leave out the fact that there is "sexual content" and "nudity" in them as well. Some don't mind the "violence" in action films, westerns and documentaries,  but do not want films in their DVD collection that also contain soft core pornography that they inadvertently ended up buying because the rating didn't properly label the contents of the film.

Too many films are being marketed to kids that really shouldn't be and in some cases exposing kids and teens to movies they really shouldn't be watching.

For example, the film "Uptown Girls." This really was not a film for kids or teens, but it got a PG-13. It contained themes and scenes not appropriate for teens. However, the studio's trailer and poster/box cover would lead you to think it's a movie that's for kids (no disrespect intended to Brittany Murphy and Dakota Fanning, as they are talented actresses).

LEGAL FILE Pellicano Case

Anthony Pellicano [Pic Courtesy of MSNBC]

And the arrests continue...

Director Busted

Director John McTiernan

This month, the director of   the film "Die Hard" John McTiernan was indicted on charges of lying to the FBI about his involvement with Anthony Pellicano. The FBI alleged he hired Pellicano to wiretap a co-producer, Charles Roven, of his 2002 flopped film, “Rollerball.” Even then he still kept lying, until the court date where confessed he did indeed hire Pellicano to wiretap an industry enemy. He was given a plea deal that is under seal.

Guess old habits Die Hard. Speaking of that…

McTiernan directed the action films “Predator” and “Last Action Hero.” Hey, since he's been arrested I don’t feel so bad that I slammed the film “The Last Action Hero” a few months ago on this site. Ok, like I felt bad that I slammed the film in the first place. Arnold's a great action star, but the script was baddddd.

“The 55-year-old director was accused of making false statements after he told FBI investigators last month he had no knowledge of any wiretapping by Mr Pellicano and had never discussed it with him

"In fact, as defendant McTiernan well knew," say the charges, "he had hired and paid Anthony Pellicano to conduct a wiretapping of Charles Roven and Anthony Pellicano had discussed with defendant McTiernan his interception of Charles Roven's telephone calls and the information that Anthony Pellicano had obtained from that wiretap." The Guardian UK

Fields’ Law Firm To Split, 9 Lawyers Jumping Ship

Bert "I Don't Wanna Get Brokebacked" Fields  

Following the ongoing theme of jumping ship regarding the Defendants…

Dale F. Kinsella Howard L. Weitzman

 “Dale F. Kinsella and Howard L. Weitzman are expected to take seven attorneys with them when they exit Greenberg, Glusker, Fields, Claman, Machtinger & Kinsella in mid-April, according to sources within the firm.” – L.A. Times

A curious quote:

“Brian Sun, the attorney representing Greenberg Glusker, has said that neither the firm nor any of its attorneys engaged in any illegal activity.” – L.A. Times

And why would they admit that. It would be go to jail don’t collect $100 time. This ain’t monopoly. The jail ain’t made of cardboard.

And if Fields goes down, and goes to the big house, it’s gonna be Mrs. Fields (the dessert brand) where Bert would become dessert for some dude named Bubba. Bert would get Brokebacked.

Bert's dog pictured below was quoted as saying, "Yes, I saw him do it. I would call Scooby Doo on him, because Scooby would investigate and solve this case, but he threatened to sic Pellicano on me."

Bert Fields With Wife Barbara Guggenheim.
 

Bert's Dog: "Yup, he's definitely one of us. Literally!"

[Pics courtesy of the SF Chronicle]

Speaking of Bert Fields, he defended the Coming America case brought by Art Buchwald that I have written about on here. Art Buchwald is said to be in failing health, refusing dialysis, so I wanted to wish him well.

 

Art Buchwald

I do wish he would take the dialysis treatments, though. Many have said they are a pain in the butt, but they do help. Denise Matthews, formerly Vanity, now a minister, used to take them and God has granted her better health these past few years (http://www.denisematthews.com/).

Brad Grey And Michael Ovitz Accused Of Lying To FBI

Brad Grey [Pic Courtesy Of What's Out next] Michael Ovitz [Pic Courtesy Of Crime Library]

A follow up on last month's Column where I wrote about Brad Grey and Michael Ovitz. Also note this article states that through said crooked private investigator, Michael Ovitz was able to obtain an advance copy of a vanity Fair article about himself.

As mentioned above, Madonna criminally obtained an advanced text copy of my book about Hollywood. These people in that same circle use the same questionable tactics:

NYT - F.B.I. Links Big Film Names to a Detective - LOS ANGELES, April 13 — The chairman of Paramount Pictures and a onetime Hollywood superagent had far more direct dealings than they have acknowledged publicly with the celebrity detective at the center of a rapidly expanding wiretapping scandal, according to government evidence.

Connected Brad Grey, Paramount's chairman, told the F.B.I. that he spoke with Anthony Pellicano about two lawsuits in which Mr. Pellicano, a private detective, was working on Mr. Grey's behalf, and that he learned information about his legal opponents directly from Mr. Pellicano. A former employee of Mr. Pellicano, who was charged in February with wiretapping and conspiracy, separately told the F.B.I. that Mr. Grey had met with the detective at least five times.

Publicly, Mr. Grey has said that he was only "casually acquainted" with Mr. Pellicano, and that his lawyers were responsible for hiring and overseeing the detective.

Michael S. Ovitz, a former talent agent and Hollywood powerhouse who served as the head of the Creative Artists Agency and was once president of the Walt Disney Company, acknowledged to the F.B.I. that he paid Mr. Pellicano in April or May of 2002 to obtain information on 15 to 20 people who were saying negative things about him. They included former business associates and Bernard Weinraub, then a reporter for The New York Times who was reporting on the demise of a company Mr. Ovitz started after he left Disney, and Anita Busch, a freelance reporter who wrote with Mr. Weinraub.

But the government's questioning of the two Hollywood executives — who maintain they are witnesses in the case, not targets — shows authorities circling the heavyweight entertainment lawyer Bert Fields, who worked for both.

Grey, who headed the entertainment company Brillstein-Grey until being named chairman of Paramount in January 2005, described his interaction with Mr. Pellicano in two interviews, the second of which, on Jan. 14, 2004, told a story fuller and somewhat different from the first, which occurred on July 17, 2003.

In his first interview, Mr. Grey told F.B.I. agents and prosecutors that he met Mr. Pellicano around 1996 in the Sunset Boulevard office building where Mr. Pellicano's detective agency and Brillstein-Grey then were neighboring tenants. Mr. Grey said he knew Mr. Pellicano enough to say hello in the hallway. Mr. Grey said he could not recall if he knew of Mr. Pellicano's association with Mr. Fields before the Shandling lawsuit, which was filed in 1998.

But Mr. Shandling, in his own F.B.I. interview, said Mr. Grey had urged him to hire Mr. Fields "and a private investigator who worked with Fields by the name of Anthony Pellicano" in 1996, when Mr. Shandling was sued by a former girlfriend and employee, Linda Doucett. Mr. Grey proposed that "Fields and Pellicano would '[dig] up dirt' " on Ms. Doucett, Mr. Shandling told agents.

In his first interview, Mr. Grey, who told investigators he was unaware of Mr. Pellicano's use of any intimidation tactics, repeatedly called Mr. Pellicano a "colorful character," and once called him "warm." Regarding the Shandling lawsuit, which was filed in 1998 and settled in 1999, Mr. Grey said he could not remember why Mr. Pellicano had been hired or any specific instructions Mr. Fields had given him.

But in the second F.B.I. interview, six months later, Mr. Grey said Mr. Fields had hired Mr. Pellicano to investigate an allegation that Mr. Shandling had a drug dependency, and to determine how a draft of a libel lawsuit against Mr. Shandling had been leaked to a magazine.

Mr. Grey told the F.B.I. in July 2003 that he could not recall ever speaking by phone with Mr. Pellicano during the Shandling dispute. But in January 2004, Mr. Grey said Mr. Pellicano called him "from time to time to talk about the case and the Hollywood scene." Mr. Grey said Mr. Pellicano mainly told him to "stay strong and not settle" with Mr. Shandling, and that Mr. Grey conveyed Mr. Pellicano's advice to Mr. Fields, his lawyer, who told him to ignore it.

Mr. Grey — who told agents he had worked with Mr. Pellicano on a proposal for a television series about a private detective — said in the July 2003 interview that he did not recall any face-to-face meetings with Mr. Pellicano about the Shandling case. The F.B.I. summaries do not contain any mention by Mr. Grey of any substantive meetings with Mr. Pellicano over the years.

But a month after the July 2003 interview, when a former employee of Mr. Pellicano, Lilly LeMasters, who said she worked for him from 1996 until April 2001, was asked by the F.B.I. if she recognized Mr. Grey's name, she remembered him as a Pellicano client who was "very arrogant." Ms. LeMasters said she did not know the details of the case but had seen Mr. Grey in Mr. Pellicano's office twice; she also said Mr. Pellicano visited Mr. Grey's office three or four times.

In the January 2004 interview, Mr. Grey also told the authorities he did not recall Mr. Pellicano's ever saying anything indicating that he had inside knowledge from the Shandling camp. But Mr. Grey said he did once hear Mr. Pellicano say Mr. Shandling was driving his lawyers crazy. He said one did not have to be particularly close to Mr. Shandling "and his people to make that observation."

Mr. Ovitz said he had heard of Mr. Pellicano for years "around the campus," as he called Hollywood, and that some of his clients had used the detective. Mr. Ovitz said Mr. Pellicano called him a few times a week, presumably to drum up business, but that he did not return the calls.

Mr. Ovitz said he first met Mr. Pellicano in 2001, when Artists Management Group — the vehicle Mr. Ovitz had used to attempt a comeback as a talent manager — was disintegrating. He said he hired Mr. Pellicano to help with lawsuits by a former employee and by a sports agent demanding a commission, and paid Mr. Pellicano $25,000 for each case through the firm handling the lawsuits, Gorry Meyer & Rudd.

Mr. Ovitz said that at Mr. Pellicano's direction, Mr. Ovitz used the code name Gaspar when calling Mr. Pellicano's office. Mr. Ovitz told the F.B.I. he was ignorant of Mr. Pellicano's methods and unaware of any wiretapping, but he said he was impressed by Mr. Pellicano's "initiative and resourcefulness."

Mr. Ovitz said he believed that Mr. Pellicano was also investigating him, to drum up business; he complained of telephone problems and provided the F.B.I. agents his phone numbers.

In April or May 2002, as he was negotiating and completing the sale of Artists Management, Mr. Ovitz learned that a "group of people" were "coming after" him to attack his reputation, he told the F.B.I., and he hired Mr. Pellicano to investigate. He said he asked Mr. Pellicano for embarrassing information about 15 to 20 people who were affecting his plans to sell the business, including Ron Meyer, his former partner at C.A.A. and the current head of Universal Studios; Mr. Weinraub; and the entertainment titan David Geffen, a partner in DreamWorks. Asked if Ms. Busch was on the list, Mr. Ovitz said she was.

In May 2002, Mr. Ovitz said, Mr. Pellicano obtained for him an unedited, advance copy of a Vanity Fair article to be published that August in which Mr. Ovitz attributed his problems to a "gay mafia" in Hollywood. The agents noted that Mr. Ovitz "claimed to have never read" the article.

Mr. Ovitz told the F.B.I. that he met three or four times with Mr. Pellicano and spoke "multiple" times with him in June and July of 2002. Mr. Ovitz said he received an oral report about Mr. Weinraub, Ms. Busch and Mr. Geffen, but all Mr. Ovitz said about the report was that Mr. Pellicano called Ms. Busch "boring and not worth [Ovitz's] time." When Mr. Pellicano claimed he had worked for Mr. Geffen in the past, doing "damage control" relating to "Geffen's gay lifestyle," Mr. Ovitz told the F.B.I., he wondered what Mr. Pellicano might say about him.

Mr. Ovitz said he paid Mr. Pellicano $75,000 in cash, the last payment in late June or early July 2002." - New York Times

Fields' Relationship To Madonna

Why is it when newspapers now bring up the stars who are clients of Bert Fields, they deliberately leave out Madonna, who is one of his main clients. He defended her just recently through that Warner Bros Music debacle where they kicked her out of the label, Maverick, that she figure headed, while others did the work. Prior to the Pellicano indictments, she was regularly referred to as his client in many articles - some of which I include in my lawsuit as exhibits.

Fields, Like His Client Madonna, Talks Too Much

Ever heard the phrase “Loose lips sink ships.” Someone ought to tack that under the Hollywood sign.

This month a mainstream publication picked up on a point I posted on the lawsuit page back September 2005 that I read on LukeFord.net – Bert Fields incriminated himself in essence by writing about characters and situations in his books  that are way too much like his real life. From Slate: 

“Did Hollywood lawyer Bert Fields reveal too much in his novels?

The novels tell the life story of big-shot lawyer to the stars Bert Fields, er, Harry Cain, who represents everybody who's anybody in Tinseltown. Copious legal cases require the indomitable Cain to engage in Perry Mason-like hijinks in and out of the courtroom. Meanwhile, the narrative threads are loosely held together by predictable overarching themes in Cain's personal life: In The Sunset Bomber, it's a steamy affair (given the barrage of poorly penned sex scenes, you might almost mistake these legal thrillers for Harlequin romances) and the impending arrival of an illegitimate grandchild. In The Lawyer's Tale, the theme is more somber: the terminal illness of Cain's wife, Nancy.

Cain smacks of Fields in numerous ways. A sampling of the clues: Both drive Bentleys. Nancy is heavily involved in the arts, serving as chair of the Arts Council. Fields' current wife, Barbara Guggenheim, holds a Ph.D. in art history and is a partner at an art consulting firm. Cain's wife, Nancy, dies of cancer. Fields' previous wife, Lydia, died of cancer. When Nancy dies, Cain and his daughter walk "from downtown to the sea," something that he always longed to do with his wife. A write-up in the Harvard Law Bulletin says, "Many Sunday mornings, [Fields] and his wife set forth on their ritual four-hour walk across the city."

But are there incriminating facts to be gleaned from the more salient passages? Cain's close acquaintances mirror some of Fields'—Mel Brooks, Dustin Hoffman—but his most intriguing colleague is Cipriano "Skip" Corrigan. Corrigan boasts a likeness to Pellicano: Apart from the obvious fact that they're in the same line of work, they're also both at least partially of Italian descent, have black belts in karate, and are not afraid to resort to the tough-guy act. As Pellicano told People in 1993: "I always start out by being a gentleman. I only use intimidation and fear when I absolutely have to." Corrigan opts for less traditional scare tactics: "A shoelace, a rolled-up newspaper, or a pocket comb, in his skilled hands, could cause mortal damage."

Cain calls on Corrigan when he's faced with a personal dilemma; he's confident that a Harvard medical trial with a lengthy wait list is the panacea for his wife. So, he asks Corrigan to unearth whatever is necessary to get Nancy into the program. Corrigan's nugget: The man who could get in the way of their participation regularly visits a prostitute. "[H]e calls her two or three times a day from his office phone in between sessions. Don't ask me how I know. You don't wanna know," Corrigan tells Cain, implying that he's able to monitor the man's conversations.

The irony is that, as written by Fields, Harry Cain is obsessed with the idea that others are monitoring his conversations. In The Lawyer's Tale, he represents Joe Miletti, a director angling to get final cut from the studio on his $40 million film, The Last Battle. (Fields himself represented Warren Beatty in very similar litigation when ABC and Paramount wanted to run an edited version of Reds for TV.) At one point, when Miletti and Cain begin to discuss the stolen film, Cain interrupts Miletti, saying, "I don't want to discuss this stuff over the car phone, Joe. Anyone might hear—and anyway, for all you guys out there listening in on scanners, I don't know dick about that film."

Cain negotiates the final terms of Miletti's direction over the film at the studio offices, which the studio has wiretapped so that executives can covertly listen from behind closed doors. Cain explains to Miletti, "The room was obviously wired, not just so Yank could hear our discussion, but also because they hoped we'd make a mistake, and they'd catch us admitting we had the film." Cain's eavesdropping paranoia shines through further when leaving the studio: "Miletti began to speak, but Harry put his finger to his lips, indicating silence. It was not unlikely the elevators in the Consolidated Studios Building would be bugged, if only to hear the thoughts and plans of agents and lawyers as they left their meetings with studio negotiators."

Cain's Pellicano-like sidekick Corrigan makes another couple of appearances in the Harry Cain novels, entering the picture at Cain's beck and call, ready to dredge up whatever dirt is needed. And when Cain questions Corrigan about how he obtains the information he presents, it's typically qualified with a comment like, "You know better than to ask that." This wink-wink communication strategy may technically leave Cain in the dark, but his ready embrace of the information, despite the fact that it was questionably attained, may still leave him culpable

In the end, these slippery tricks may well be the product of Fields' imagination. But it's obvious that he at least partially adhered to the adage, "Write what you know." Leave it to a lawyer to be so literal.”


LEGAL FILE Judicial And Governmental Systems: Has The Constitution Become Novelty

[Courtesy of The Library of Congress]

I thought about it the other day and asked myself, has the Constitution become novelty, as so many people in Hollywood and in the Judicial System are not following it anymore. They are knowingly violating it. It's a shame, really. It's a fine legal document. I was always very fond of it, as it made sense and is civil.

A country's law is a country's word and when a country fails to honor its laws, it has broken its word. And one's word is one's honor.

Your word is your name. Your name is your honor. In this world it is your bargaining chip. Your credibility. Your character. Without it you are lost.

A beautiful painting capturing the signing of The Constitution [Courtesy of Constitution.org)

Has America lost its way. Is this what the forefathers envisioned. Privacy is gone and Hollywood is leading the brigade eroding it.

The "poor huddled masses" are also in danger of being classed with un-rehabilitated murderers, bank robbers and rapists, in their quest for a better life. Certainly there are better ways to go about this. It is all so disheartening.

Your circumstances cannot dictate who you are or your reaction to crisis. There is always a better approach. The key is finding it and minimizing the damage to all parties involved. One must always be careful that one does not solve one problem and in the process create another - especially one of greater magnitude.

Judicial Responsibility

As I waited in line at the Miami Beach post office a few months ago, I began reading an article in the Miami New Times. There was a quote in it that was absolutely stunning:

"But even if a criminal were actually arrested, there were few guarantees of serious consequences, especially if the suspect were a major drug dealer able to post his seven-figure bail. "We pay for what we need as we need it," one defense attorney bragged to Time. "If we can't bribe the cop, we try to bribe the prosecutor, and if we can't get the prosecutor, we try to buy the judge."

As history has shown, there are Federal Judges who take bribes and pervert justice in favor of their own bank accounts. Is this something the Forefathers would approve of? No! Is this something the Constitution would approve of? No!

When a judge takes a bribe, in essence they are wickedly selling the judiciary's name and destroying it in the process - along with the public's faith in said system. That's something that can't be bought back.

LEGAL FILE File This One Under Clueless

I’ve read several white supremacists message boards and they have slurs for everybody who isn’t Anglo-Saxon.Yet, a non-Anglo-Saxon man who is Italian, Vincent Bertollini, was financially supporting them. On White Supremacist boards, Italians are regularly referred to as “half nig*er.” Bertollini is clearly playing for the wrong team.

“FBI catches Bertollini in New Mexico - Racist was fleeing DUI charge in Idaho - Federal fugitive R. Vincent Bertollini, a racist gadfly who bankrolled the late leader of the Aryan Nations, was arrested Wednesday by the FBI in Santa Fe, N.M., almost five years after fleeing a drunken-driving charge in North Idaho.

Bertollini, 67, was arrested by federal agents as he attempted to cash a $1,000 check at a Santa Fe check-chasing business, which he allegedly used to live "off the grid" and avoid being tracked through banks or credit cards.

A .380-caliber rifle and an illegal sawed-off shotgun were found in a pickup Bertollini was driving, said FBI agent Norm Brown, a spokesman for the Inland Northwest Joint Terrorism Task Force, which had tracked him...

"He was not overly cooperative," the FBI supervisor said.

The FBI's regional task force, which tracks foreign and domestic terrorist activities, drew a bead on Bertollini because he was a significant financial backer of the Aryan Nations, whose members over the years have been involved in a host of criminal activities to finance their extremist views.

After moving to Sandpoint in the late 1990s, Bertollini and his close friend, multimillionaire Carl E. Story, set up a two-man racist organization known as the 11th Hour Remnant Messenger.

In 1999, Bertollini ran for mayor of Sandpoint but collected only 33 voters on his racist platform.” – Spokesman Review

LEGAL FILE Davinci Crock Pt 5

Hollywood has spread its corruption abroad. "The Da Vinci Code" case, that bore so much evidence of infringement, was closed by a judge who despite acknowledging that plagiarizer Dan Brown owned a well worn copy of the book that he is accused of plagiarizing, used it in his "research" and utilized elements in it from said book, cleared Dan Brown of copyright infringement.

Either way, who cares in this case, as they both got what they deserved for impugning the character of Christ. They lost (though they really shouldn't have) and Dan Brown's name is tarnished with the public for being a thief.

The Court of Public Opinion

He maybe cleared with the court, but judging by internet postings, he is not cleared by the public, who believes he did this and to more than one author.

However, another suit is looming from a Russian professor who says Brown used his works as well. It is clear he slapped together several books he called "research" to make "The Da Vinci Code," which really isn't writing. That's called stealing.

The Vatican Urges Boycott Of The Film "The Da Vinci Code"

The Vatican has called for a boycott of the film "The Da Vinci Code" labeling it slanderous and blasphemous, and rightly so.

"The ANSA news agency reported that Monsignor Angelo Amato said yesterday the movie, based on Dan Brown's novel, contained "slanderous" offences against Christianity that would have provoked a worldwide revolt had they been directed against Islam or the Holocaust." - The Associated Press

In this case, I think they will make some money off -cough- the heathens, proceeded by a steep fall off, but lose close to a billion representing the Christians who don't go see the film or buy the subsequent DVD - due to making a religious film - with out the religion in it.

I have to admit though, in all honesty, the trailer looks very boring and weird. Even the "Mission Impossible 3" trailer looks more appealing (and I say this even though I don't agree with Tom Cruise/Scientology). The trailer for "The Da Vinci Code" looks sick and twisted. 

Brown and co. are playing with fire in twisting the Gospel as they have. The Bible says in no uncertain terms, "But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. - Galatians 1:8."

"No Gospel in "Da Vinci Code" Claims, Scholars Say"

While it would have been unusual for a Jewish man like Jesus Christ to not be married, it was not unheard of.

 "The really odd thing would be to have Mary married to Jesus and have them next to each other in the same text [in the Bible] and for it not to be mentioned," King said. "That for me is quite conclusive that they were not married."

Brown's assertion that the divinity of Jesus Christ was an invention by the Roman emperor Constantine in A.D. 325 is widely dismissed by scholars—Christ's divinity had already been described in the New Testament.

The theory proposed in Brown's novel is that Mary Magdalene and her daughter, Sara, were whisked away to France after Christ's death. There, the descendants of Jesus and Mary intermarried with French kings, creating the so-called Merovingian dynasty. But there is no evidence of such a child or bloodline in any verifiable documents.  

The Last Supper – Brown, however, believes that a secret society known as the Priory of Sion was established to protect the descendants of this royal bloodline. In the early 1960s a set of documents was discovered at a French library that appeared to list the members of this secret society. The names included famous scientists and artists like Isaac Newton and Leonardo da Vinci.

At the heart of Brown's novel is the suggestion that da Vinci hid clues about the secret of Jesus and Mary within one of his masterpieces, "The Last Supper."

Conspicuously missing from da Vinci's painting is the cup, also known as the Holy Grail, from which Jesus Christ is believed to have drunk on the night before his execution.

But Brown says the Holy Grail is included in the painting. Only it's not a cup but a person: Christ's supposed wife, Mary Magdalene. He says the person seated at the right of Jesus is not the apostle John but Mary Magdalene.

"If you look at that painting, it's clearly a woman," Brown says in the documentary.

Art historians and religious scholars, however, scoff at the idea. Although the person to the right of Christ appears effeminate—with long flowing hair and no beard—they say that's how John is usually depicted in most works of art.

In fact, there is no evidence that Da Vinci was a member of the Priory of Sion or that such a society even existed. The secret files found at the French library were later deemed to be a hoax, scholars say. – National Geographic

Some feedback on the novel from Oh No They Didn't:

"A few items that were originally claimed to have been copied from [Holy Blood, Holy Grail] have been dismissed because [Dan Brown's] lawyers can show ... wait for it ... he copied them from a different source, not HBHG. There was a hint that the copying was "textual" (word-for-word?) but that it was of very brief length.

I read HBHG many years before TDC, and I immediately wondered how Dan Brown got away with it, and then there's another guy who wrote a book called The DaVinci Legacy who's suing him, too. It's pretty obvious that he took stuff from HBHG. But since it was a researched historical theory of sorts and Dan Brown maintains that TDC is purely fiction, I guess it's a blurry line. Plagarism is plagerism, though, so it'll be interesting to see how this plays out. TEAM... ROBERT LANGDON?

Posts:

1. Milk It! 0sld23 2006-03-08 08:18 pm UTC (link) - The fact is, authors like Dan Brown and, dare I say it, JK Rowling who have more money than G-d ALWAYS skate out of these things, no matter what the evidence says. And it doesn't hurt them either, since they generally take the verdict and claim holiness and supernatural creativity as the true source of their obviously cribbed material. Then people believe what they want to believe about them.

Brown probably has another book in the works, and maybe if he can get TDC tarnished a little bit, people won't have as high expectations for the next one. He'll never top TDC.

2. freaklet13 2006-03-08 08:32 pm UTC (link) - It wouldn't surprise me if he stole a few lines from another source. The book isn't that great, and neither is Dan Brown's writing style. Of course he'd steal a few lines cuz he lacks the creativity to make up his own.

3. girlleastlikely 2006-03-08 03:22 pm UTC (link) - The book was awful anyway. I never understood what the big deal was. It read like it had been written by two sixteen year old girls sitting in front of HBHG.

4. _betterthanfine 2006-03-08 03:38 pm UTC (link) - I read HBHG many years before TDC, and I immediately wondered how Dan Brown got away with it.

5. _betterthanfine 2006-03-08 03:38 pm UTC (link) i agree! i read HBHG about 7 years ago and when i read the da vinci code i obviously thought dan brown had asked for permission to "quote" and borrow ideas.

6. call_me_deb 2006-03-08 03:50 pm UTC (link) - "Ideas" are not copyrightable. (Incidently, neither are "titles")

While taking direct quotes may be arguable as "fair use" in some cases, I REALLY don't think directly lifting entire passages, word for word, would be considered such.

Just FYI.

I haven't read either book, so I cannot comment on this specific instance.

7. everybodysweird 2006-03-08 03:58 pm UTC (link) - This book is so overrated, and then we find out that all this crap wasn't even original crap? Haha.

8. bionic 2006-03-08 04:11 pm UTC (link) - i've always said the Da Vinci Code would have been an amazing book if it was written by another author. maybe now i should check out the "original".

9. londonbeauty001 2006-03-08 04:11 pm UTC (link) - I really didn't like this book, some of the stereotypes were ridiculous, and the storyline was pretty weak and obvious, it depressed me that everyone raved about it.

10. genoworld 2006-03-08 04:24 pm UTC (link) - Plagarism is plagerism ... that made me giggle.

11. gloriousmcfly 2006-03-08 04:31 pm UTC (link) - blah blah blah historical inaccuracies, dan brown is an idiot.
i've said it all before.

12. _displaced_ 2006-03-08 04:34 pm UTC (link) - I hated this book, it was poorly written from beginning to end.
(Reply to this)

INTERNET My Space Email Titled Identity Theft


There’s that phrase again = identity theft. It's happened to me again. Someone was on myspace pretending to be me. They registered under my full legal name (first and last name). They even linked back to this site, but I hadn’t checked up on it when the site got 1,000 plus hits from a myspace page. Unsurprisingly, it’s when I tried to register on myspace recently I found out I was banned. Like I said, this identity theft stuff has happened to me more than once before in different venues and it is clearly related.  

For the record, that wasn’t me. I don’t know what they wrote on there. I just know a month ago I went to register my name and it said: “Invalid Friend ID. This user has either cancelled their membership, or their account has been deleted.”   

I reported the incident to myspace and a few days later they gave me my name back.  

SEISMOLOGY Earthquakes

California is gorgeous - and is one of the world's most earthquake prone regions. Recently, I remembered the Prieta Loma and Northridge Quakes in California. They were devastating. It's amazing how a natural disaster that only lasts seconds can do so much damage.

That's the weird thing about earthquakes. With hurricanes you get warning so you can bail to the next, um...state. Scientists are unable to predict earthquakes, as they strike so suddenly, often not following a discernable pattern.

The above pictured houses look like they were hit by a wrecking ball, but were destroyed by the Loma Prieta Quake (October 17, 1989 - 6.9-7.1 in magnitude)

Loma Prieta Quake - bridge ripped in two

Facade of building ripped off by Loma Prieta Quake

Roads cracked open like walnuts by the Loma Prieta Quake

[Pics courtesy of usgs.gov]

SOCIAL ISSUES Duke University Rape  Scandal

The Alleged Rape 

Duke has been rocked by a rape scandal with racial undertones, where people aren't sure who is telling the truth.

"The stripper, a student at a nearby university, told police she was hired to perform at a party at a house just off campus last month and was raped and choked by three men in a bathroom.

She told police she believed the players used false names and falsely claimed to be members of Duke's baseball and track teams.

District Attorney Mike Nifong has said that he is "pretty confident that a rape occurred," but that he does not expect to file charges until next week. - the Associated Press

The Email 

Ryan McFadden

After the alleged rape, a lacrosse team member sent the following disturbing email to his friends on the team:

"tommrow night, after tonights show, i’ve decided to have some strippers over to edens 2c. all are welcome.. however there will be no nudity. I plan on killing the b----es as soon as the walk in and proceding to cut their skin off ... " - Ryan McFadyen.

He needs help. That kind of rage and racial hostility is dangerous to the community.

Coach Resigns

“DURHAM, N.C. — Duke's lacrosse coach resigned Wednesday and the university canceled the rest of the season amid a burgeoning scandal involving allegations that three players on the highly ranked team raped a stripper at an off-campus party.”  - The Associated Press

History of Misconduct

The Lacrosse Team - "Nearly a third of the team's 47 members have been charged in recent years with offenses such as disorderly conduct and public urination".- Houston Chronicle

The Alleged Victim - it has been revealed that the stripper has made such allegations before.

None of this speaks well for the accuser or the accused.

 

LOCAL NEWS FPL Follow Up

 

A follow up on last month’s Column, where I wrote about FPL and the protests that ensued against them for their policies and prices.

 

Two days after that Column ran, it was announced that someone drilled a hole in one of the lines at their nuclear power plant in Miami. Their NUCLEAR POWER PLANT. That’s a comforting thought (not).

 

The FBI and local police are investigating. While some are hoping it was an accident, others are very skeptical and calling it "highly unlikely."

 

The question is, why was security at A NUCLEAR POWER PLANT that weak that something like that could happen.

“FPL has faced problems with security in recent years at its nuclear plants. Last month, a former Wackenhut Corp. security guard was arrested and charged with stealing a semiautomatic rifle and a thermal sight from the St. Lucie plant.

In February, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission reported that it was reviewing security issues at Turkey Point, about 25 miles south of Miami. The agency would not elaborate.

In April 2004, FPL officials removed six Wackenhut security guards at the St. Lucie plant after an audit found they skipped part of their rounds, taking shortcuts meant to detect and prevent fires.” - Sarasota Herald-Tribune

And now a 1/8th inch hole in a line AT A NUCLEAR POWER PLANT. Not good.

FPL are now offering a $100,000 reward. It seems to me FPL needs to dump that 100K into getting some security.

Another follow up on the last Column about FPL. It seems people’s protest are being heard, as it was announced on April 4, 2006 that the Attorney General is “challenging FPL rate hike.” He has filed a petition with the Public Service Commission, according to the TCPalm web site. He also accused FPL of “inflating costs.”

He’s right. They price gouged customers for years and offered cruddy insurance policies with horrible terms of protection.

NATIONAL NEWS Tom Fox

My condolences to the family of Tom Fox:

“American Apparently Tortured Before Death. BAGHDAD, Iraq - An American aid worker taken hostage with three other peace activists was apparently tortured before he was shot in the head and chest and his body dumped near a railroad line in Baghdad, Iraqi police said Saturday.

Tom Fox, a 54-year-old member of Christian Peacemaker Teams from Clear Brook, Va., was the fifth American hostage killed in Iraq. There was no immediate word on his fellow captives, a Briton and two Canadians.

The U.S. command in Baghdad confirmed that Fox's body was picked up by American forces on Thursday evening, although it provided no information on the condition.” – Yahoo News

NATIONAL NEWS Immigration Situation

Protester at an immigration rally

I read these hilarious quotes in the Guardian Newspaper:

"Today we march, tomorrow we vote," ran the wording on one. "Jesus was an immigrant," read another, although it didn't say how long He had to wait for his Green Card."

Serious quotes:

"We are America!" said Chung Wa-Hong of the New York Immigration Coalition. "We're here, and we're here to make America strong!" The organisers reckoned there were hundreds of thousands in the crowd that brought gridlock, or rather even more gridlock than usual, to the streets of Manhattan."

"On the other hand, the economic contribution made by illegal immigrants is reckoned to be around $21bn a year. Not a great deal in the context of the overall size of the US economy, perhaps, but they give more than they take."

"In this week's protests near Manhattan's financial district, the banner which probably hit closest to home was the one reminding the bystanders just how much they had to lose. "Your dinner - made possible by an immigrant near you." If an appeal to the stomach won't have any impact, nothing will."

14 Year Old Commits Suicide Over Immigration Protests

In some terrible news, 14 year old Anthony Soltero committed suicide over the immigration conflict. My condolences to his family:

"A distraught Ontario, Calif., mother on Friday called for the removal of a vice principal who she blames for her 14-year-old son's suicide, which she said occurred after he was disciplined for missing class to take part in an immigration march.

Louise Corales said her son, Anthony Soltero, called her shortly before shooting himself to death March 30, saying he was suspended from school and had been told by the vice principal he was going to jail for three years for skipping school.

The vice principal called Anthony into his office and, in front of other students, told Anthony that he would not be allowed to attend graduation functions, that his parents would be fined, and (he) threatened that Anthony would go to jail for three years," his mother stated in the letter. "This caused Anthony to be so upset, distraught and overwhelmed that he took his own life." Ontario police on Wednesday night released the boy's suicide note to his family. Samuel Paz, the mother's attorney, said it corroborates the allegations against the vice principal. However, Paz and the boy's mother have declined to release the note.

"It certainly corroborates what the kids were saying, that this (threat of jail) was the source of his suicide," he added. "Any logical person could make that same conclusion," Paz said of the suicide note." - Los Angeles Times

INTERNATIONAL NEWS Iran

 

...and the Iran nuclear conflict continues. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is being very stubborn, unreasonable and unwise in provoking the ire of so many nations. If he does not turn around and desist in his plans, nothing good will come of it.

 

He is demanding the right to be nuclear, but he pretty much forfeited that right when he publicly stated he wants Israel wiped off the map. How can people trust his intentions after that.

 

He is puzzled by the world's reaction, but he must look at what he said from the other side of the diplomacy table. How would he feel if another country said they want to “enrich nuclear materials” and in the next breath say they want Iran wiped off the map. He would be concerned. 

 

Missile Testing

 

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been missile testing among other things, as a form of a threat, but it is horrible for the environment. It produces undesirable changes in the weather/bad weather patterns that are unnecessary and preventable.

 

Not to mention this type d of provocation is a bad military move. This will not benefit you or your country. The world will not respond well to threats of this nature, as it is endangering everyone.

 

It is my hope that this conflict does not get out of control. For the sake of his country and his people he needs to calm down.

 

Diplomacy needs to be the order of the day, as there is no reason that this should devolve into violence, but Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is agitating the world. He is playing a dangerous game that he will lose if he does not desist.

 

There are over 6 billion people on this planet who deserve a chance at a peaceful life.   

 

Remembering Chernobyl

 

 

[Photo and caption courtesy of CNN]

 

 

Chernobyl nuclear power plant

 

Mr. Ahmadinejad needs to remember Chernobyl 20 years ago and what can go wrong:

"Chernobyl death toll underestimated says Greenpeace - LONDON (Reuters) - The death toll from the Chernobyl nuclear disaster 20 years ago could be far higher than official estimates, with up to 93,000 extra cancer deaths worldwide, environmental group Greenpeace said on Tuesday.

Based on research by the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, the report said that of the 2 billion people globally affected by the Chernobyl fallout, 270,000 will develop cancers as a result, of which 93,000 will prove fatal.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) estimates 4,000 people died as a result of the explosion in reactor number four at the power plant in the Ukrainian town of Chernobyl on April 26, 1986.

The explosion sent a plume of radioactive dust across northern and western Europe and as far as the eastern United States.

The Greenpeace report further extrapolates that in total some 200,000 people in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus could have already died as a result of medical conditions -- such as cardiovascular diseases -- attributable to the disaster.

"Our problem is that there is no accepted methodology to calculate the numbers of people who might have died from such diseases," Greenpeace campaigner Jan van de Putte told Reuters.

"The only methodology that is accepted is for calculating fatal cancers," he said.

The report said the incidence of cancer in Belarus jumped 40 percent between 1990 and 2000, with children not even born at the time now showing an 88.5-fold increase in thyroid cancers.

Leukaemia is also reported to be on the increase in the region, as are cases of intestinal, rectal, breast, bladder, kidney and lung cancers.

The relocation of hundreds of thousands of people as a result of the explosion has put further strains on the population, the report said." - Reuters

SPIRITUAL Why Do People Treat Each Other So Badly

Why do people treat each other so badly. I was reading a crime web site that listed famous crimes such as the Kennedy assassination and the Sharon Tate murder and it was appalling. Not because they are famous, but the fact that sometimes people treat others so cruelly. Some have died brutal deaths - the victims of someone else's rage and wickedness. These things caused so much pain.

While I know we don't live in a perfect world, a lot of things that have happened are heinous, not to mention preventable. Respect for human life is a start.

God gave life, yet others take it. This ought not to be.