Archive for Celebrity Wackos

Spike Lee, Meet Louise Day Hicks

Ms. Hicks was the very public face of the Boston busing kerfuffle.

She and Spike Lee could have quite a chat about the evils of integration:

“I grew up here in New York. It’s changed,” Lee said at Brooklyn’s Pratt Institute, an art, design, and architecture school. “And why does it take an influx of white New Yorkers in the South Bronx, in Harlem, in Bed Stuy, in Crown Heights for the facilities to get better? The garbage wasn’t picked up every mother******* day when I was living in 165 Washington Park. … The police weren’t around. When you see white mothers pushing their babies in strollers, three o’clock in the morning on 125th Street, that must tell you something.”

Mitchell Moss, a professor of urban policy and planning at New York University’s Wagner School of Public Service, said the city has witnessed an enormous recovery since 2001, and the greatest change has been felt in Brooklyn, which has drawn newcomers because of its housing, access to Manhattan and improved safety.

“Cities don’t stand still, and the cities that stand still are Detroit,” Moss said. “So if Spike Lee wants to see a place where there is no gentrification, he’ll also find a place where there are no investments. Obviously, he’s someone who knows how to make a movie but doesn’t know anything about cities.”

He added: “Brooklyn has become more attractive to more people. Of course, that means some people are going to have to find other places to live, but that’s the magic of New York. We create new places. Today, Bushwick, which was an area that people were afraid to go to, now has some of the best restaurants in the city.”

“Let me just kill you right now,” Lee, the “Do The Right Thing” director, told D.K. Smith, a Brooklyn homeowner and tech start-up director, at the speech when Smith brought up the subject of the “other side” of gentrification.

And then he launched his lengthy tirade.

Smith told Lee on Tuesday that he didn’t dispute his point that services in the neighborhoods had changed after the new people — most of whom are white — moved in.

“Whoa, whoa, whoa…” said Lee. “Let me kill you some more.”
“Can I talk about something?” Smith said.

“Not yet. Then comes the mother******’ Christopher Columbus Syndrome. You can’t discover this! We been here,” he said to applause from the audience.

He gave the examples of people playing drums in Mount Morris Park, a tradition he said lasted 40 years until the new residents complained.

And then there was the one that literally hit home. Lee said his father, “a great jazz musician,” bought a brownstone 46 years ago.

“And the mother******’ people moved in last year and called the cops on my father. He’s not — he doesn’t even play electric bass. It’s acoustic. We bought the mother******’ house in 1968, and now you call the cops? In 2013?

Point of clarification, Spike. They call the police at two in the morning.

And are you complaining about the increased security and waste management?

Smith couldn’t get a word in during Lee’s speech Tuesday night. But the next day he said he was glad the filmmaker got people talking about the issue.

But Smith said there was a definite lack of balance in Lee’s rant.

“I’m black, and America is America,” he said. “I don’t need to moan and groan about it all the time.”

“I’m personally tired of moaning and groaning about being black,” he said. “Here’s a case where it has its advantages — for the first time tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of blacks can participate in American wealth creation. My God, that’s what this country is all about.”

Referring to reports that Lee’s 9,000-square-foot mansion on Manhattan’s Upper East Side is on the market for $32 million, Smith said: “Spike is a causative factor in gentrification. If Spike moves to a swamp … that land next door goes up immediately.”

Spike Lee is the living embodiment of “what this country is all about.” A film school grad with smarts and ambition, he made a film, She’s Gotta Have It, that launched him to international stardom. Deservedly—he’s a great filmmaker. I don’t begrudge him a single dollar he’s earned, a single square foot of his “mansion”, a single front row seat at Knicks games. But it’s not just black people buying tickets to see his movies. I was among the “influx of white New Yorkers” who not only went to see his movies, but moved to a “marginal” neighborhood (for the neighborhood as much as the rent, more Dominican than African American). Curiously, the public services did not improve upon our arrival.

Many of the neighborhoods who were predominantly African American in Spike Lee’s youth bore strikingly different ethnic identities in the decades before. Immigrant Jews and Italians lived there as newcomers; before that:

Harlem was “a synonym for elegant living through a good part of the nineteenth century.”

Many people share Lee’s lament and frustration. I live in a town many lifers can no longer afford to live in—due in part to mother******’ newcomers like me bidding up house prices. I guess that makes me a serial gentrifier. (I did the same thing when I lived in London—only Americans and Arabs can afford to live in some neighborhoods.)

But the best refutation of Lee comes from the academic we quoted above: “Cities don’t stand still, and the cities that stand still are Detroit.”

PS: It’s not Lee’s first offense:

Ted Nugent apologized. Now it’s Spike Lee’s turn.

Lee sided with Minister Louis Farrakhan when the leader of the Nation of Islam accused President George W. Bush’s administration of intentionally blowing up levees during Hurricane Katrina. “It’s not far-fetched,” Lee said, “And also I would like to say it’s not necessarily blow it up. But, the residents of that ward, they believe it, there was a Hurricane Betsy in ’65, the same that happened where a choice had to be made, one neighborhood got to save another neighborhood and flood another ‘hood, flood another neighborhood … ” Far-fetched? “Presidents have been assassinated,” Lee said, “So why is that so far-fetched? … Do you think that election in 2000 was fair? You don’t think that was rigged? If they can rig an election, they can do anything!”

No apology from Lee for accusing Bush of mass murder?

This brings us to Lee and the Trayvon Martin case.

In Chicago, Obama’s hometown, murders in 2012 topped 500. 2013 saw a “low” murder total of 421 — the equivalent of a Sandy Hook every three weeks. Most of the killers and the killed are black. Worse, only about one-fourth of these cases are “cleared,” where a suspect has been identified and arrested. Nationwide, the No. 1 preventable cause of death among young black males is not accidents — as it is with whites — it is homicide, almost always committed by another black person.

But when a black is killed by a non-black, even where the shooter could reasonably claim self-defense, out comes Lee’s agenda. To Lee, the killing of Martin, a 17-year-old black teen, by non-black George Zimmerman was a referendum on how America’s criminal justice treats black victims. Incensed that authorities had not yet arrested and charged Zimmerman, Lee tweeted what he thought was the home address of Zimmerman’s parents. Wrong address. Lee did apologize for this one, later paying a financial settlement to the owners of the “wrong” home.

Lee also once publicly stated his opposition to “interracial couples.” About a year after he released “Jungle Fever,” a film about a black-white couple, Lee said: “I give interracial couples a look. Daggers. They get uncomfortable when they see me on the street.” This might have been news to Obama’s parents.

Lee, a gun control proponent, seems okay with the use of a firearm — depending upon the target. He once verbally threatened NRA head Charlton Heston. Lee said somebody should “shoot him with a .44-caliber Bulldog.”

No president ever held a fundraiser in Ted Nugent’s mansion. Lee, on the other hand, has a close relationship with Obama. Will Lee apologize for calling Lott a “card-carrying member of the Klan,” for urging the assassination of the president of the NRA or for affirming accusations against George W. Bush of mass murder?

Nugent apologized. Now it’s Spike’s turn.

Add one more to the list.

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Watch Your Language

This is a shocking and wholly inappropriate way to speak of anyone:

[Ted] Nugent is known for making controversial comments about Democrats and President Barack Obama in particular.

Just last month, he called the president a “subhuman mongrel” in an interview with Guns.com.

No. No. No.

This is just as inappropriate:

OBAMA: Well, you know, when I was young and going through the identity crisis that any teenager goes through — I wrote a book about this.

[BARBARA] WALTERS: Yes. … We all read it.

OBAMA: You know, part of what I realized was that if the world saw me as African American, then that wasn’t something that I needed to run away from. That’s something that I could go ahead and embrace. And the interesting thing about the African-American experience in this country is that we are sort of a mongrel people. I mean, we’re all kind of mixed up.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Yeah.

Not “yeah”. No!

No. No. No.

Of course, Obama went on to say this:

Now, that’s actually true for white America as well, but we just know more about it.

So, white Americans are mongrels; black Americans are mongrels; we’re all mongrels. It sounds like a good thing.

Obama also once said this:

In his first press conference since winning the race to the White House, President-elect Barack Obama addressed a pressing question: who is going to be the first dog?

Obama told a group of reporters in Chicago on Friday that since his 10-year-old daughter, Malia, is allergic, the Obama family is looking for a hypoallergenic breed. But Obama also said the family wants to adopt one from a shelter.

“There are a number of breeds that are hypoallergenic, but on the other hand our preference is to get a shelter dog, but obviously, a lot of the shelter dogs are mutts like me,” Obama said.

We think all of this language is unfortunate. People are free to say it, of course, but we are free to reject it. And we reject “subhuman mongrel” most of all.

PS: And Nugent was on such a roll!

“I have obviously failed to galvanize and prod, if not shame enough Americans to be ever vigilant not to let a Chicago communist-raised, communist-educated, communist-nurtured subhuman mongrel like the acorn community organizer gangster Barack Hussein Obama to weasel his way into the top office of authority in the United States of America.”

No. No. No…. Yes?

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Bubbleheads

So, who do you like in the big game today? Coke, Pepsi, or SodaStream?

The controversy hit a new high last week with the Oxfam charity’s criticism of actress Scarlett Johansson, who has signed on as a spokeswoman for SodaStream. Johansson has said she will stick with her commitment to SodaStream – and has stepped down as an ambassador for Oxfam in protest of its anti-Israel stance.

Oxfam, which only recently signed Johansson as its first “global brand ambassador, had couched its opposition to her role in promoting SodaStream in humanitarian and legal terms, saying it opposes “all trade” from “Israeli settlements”, which it claims are illegal and deny the rights of Palestinian Arabs. This, despite the fact that SodaStream’s Maalei Adumim factory employs both Jews and Arabs alike, and on equal terms.

But now reports are surfacing which suggest a slightly less altruistic motivation, linking Oxfam to one of SodaStream’s major competitors: the Coca-Cola company. Notably, Oxfam has also recently criticized one of Coca-Cola’s other top competitors, the PepsiCo company.

Coca-Cola donated $2.5 million to Oxfam in 2008-2010, and gave another $400,000 toward a research project aimed at investigating Coca-Cola’s impact on Zambia and El Salvador.

Good for Coke for supporting Oxfam’s work (whatever it is). And good for Oxfam for returning the favor. Loyalty is an under-appreciated virtue (venality less so).

Others’ motives may come from a darker place:

Former Pink Floyd front man Roger Waters, one of the more prominent celebrity faces of the boycott Israel movement, says he has contacted Scarlett Johansson “a couple of times” over the A-list actress’s decision to represent an Israeli company that operates in a West Bank settlement.

“In the past days I have written privately to Neil Young (once) and to Scarlett Johanson (a couple of times). Those letters will remain private,” he said. “Sadly, I have received no reply from either. And so I write this note on my Facebook page somewhat in bewilderment. Neil? I shall ponder all of this long and hard. We don’t really know each other, but, you were always one of my heroes, I am confused.”

Waters then went on to evoke a meeting with Johansson, “a year or so ago” at a Cream reunion concert in New York. “She was then, as I recall, fiercely anti Neocon, passionately disgusted by Blackwater (Dick Cheney’s private army in Iraq), you could have been forgiven for thinking that here was a young woman of strength and integrity who believed in truth, human rights, and the law and love. I confess I was somewhat smitten,” he said. “There’s no fool like an old fool.”

How could a girl resist?

Thanks to the publicity generated by the spastic Jew-hatred of Waters, Oxfam, and all their many stormtroopers on the Left, SodaStream should be all set:

Canadian Employment Minister Jason Kenney said their move spurred him to buy from SodaStream.

Appearing on Canadian Sun News last week, Kenney quipped “I’ve given money to Oxfam in the past because I thought they were there to help poor people, not to marginalize Israelis and make Palestinians unemployed.” He added that “all the nutters at Oxfam” also marginalize “Palestinian people” who get paid four times more at SodaStream than they would within Palestinian Authority-controlled areas.

Kenney bashed the “anti-Israel obsession” with which leftist groups pursue Israel, even while they ignore countries like Iran which executes political dissidents and homosexuals.

Remarking on Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s recent visit to Israel, Kenny remarked “we felt at home in Israel” due to the shared values of freedom and democracy between Israel and Canada.

I’m not a big fan of soda. On this (and this alone), I’m with Michelle Obama. If I want empty calories, I drink alcohol, not sugar water. (Not sure that’s how she puts it.) But I would drink buckets of SodaStream just to spite these vile little maggots on the Left—and then relieve myself all over them with a soda stream of my own!

What are you drinking? First round’s on me!

UPDATE
In a pathetically related story:

“Today’s status quo, absolutely to a certainty, I promise you 100 percent, cannot be maintained,” Kerry said of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. “It is not sustainable. It is illusionary.

You see for Israel there is an increasing delegitimization campaign that has been building up. People are very sensitive to it, there is talk of boycott and other kinds of things. Are we all going to be better with all of that?” Kerry’s comments were similar to ones he made during a television interview during one of his visits in November, though this time he did not warn, as he did then, of the outbreak of a third intifada.

Economy Minister Naftali Bennett slammed US Secretary of State John Kerry Saturday night, saying he should be supporting Israel rather than encouraging boycotts against it.

“Let’s make clear to all those giving advice: A nation has not been born – including us – that will give up its land because of economic threats,” Bennett said in a Facebook post. “The Jewish people is stronger than the threats against it.”

I actually find myself in agreement with Kerry here. (First, Michelle Obama, now John Kerry? What gives?) The status quo is not “sustainable”. Hence, my solution:

Okay, so it’s not exactly original. But, like Coke, sometimes the old ways are the best ways. The map is very telling: Jordan was to have been “Arab Palestine”; Israel and the West Bank were to have been “Jewish Palestine”. There was no separate Palestinian identity. That is a modern invention, like the pet rock or New Coke.

PPS: And no Gaza!

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Who Came to Your 50th B-Day? [UPDATED]

Nelson Mandela was invited to mine, but he had the sniffles. I did get John Lennon and George Harrison, however. They serenaded me with a medley of The Monkees greatest hit. Brangelina tried to crash, but I had them turned away. (Brad, anyway; how could I not accept Angelina’s offered gift?)

How about you?

[H]igh-profile guests included Sir Paul McCartney, Magic Johnson, Chicago-born actress/singer Jennifer Hudson, singer Janelle Monae, actor Kal Penn, TV personality Al Roker, actress Ashley Judd, tennis great Billie Jean King, retired Olympic figure-skater Michelle Kwan and Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, the sources said.

Singer John Legend sang the happy birthday song to Michelle Obama, according to the sources.

They said Beyonce, who is a close friend of the Obamas, sang hits including “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)“ and “To the Left,” and Wonder gave a more impromptu performance that included “Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours” and “Do I Do.”

Beyonce, ha! How about Diana Ross and the Supremes? “Stop in the Name of Love” ring a bell? That was my birthday gift. And who needs Facebook CEO Sheryl Sandberg when Steve Jobs and Bill Gates agree to a mud-pit wrestling match? Hey, I turn 50 only once.

You think I’m kidding, exaggerating? I’ve got just as much proof of my coke-fueled Roman orgy as FLOTUS does of hers:

The event was closed to the press, and the White House did not release a guest list or any other details. But two guests spoke to the Tribune on condition of anonymity, describing a bash at which a deejay kept people on the dance floor in the East Room until after 3 a.m. Washington time.

Guests were told not to bring cellphones with them, and there was a cellphone check-in area for those who did, the sources said. Signs at the party told guests: No cellphones, no social media.

That didn’t stop singer Hudson from sending out a tweet: “We had such a good time with the 1st family in dc tonight ! Now on to the next stop !”

Jennifer Hudson… please. Get your C-list has-beens outta my face. Try Michael Jackson entering stage left on the back of a tiger accompanied by Siegfried and Roy, bitches. Modesty forbids me from reporting what happened next. Use your imagination.

UPDATE
You thought it was dozens, maybe score, who attended?

Try hundreds:

There was a party in the East Room of the White House Saturday night, an affair attended by a reported 500 people, a lavish celebration with celebrities galore, appearances by some of the world’s most popular performers, lots of dancing and powerful government officials, including, of course, the most powerful official of all, the President of the United States. And the White House wants to make sure you know as little as possible about it.

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Don’t Stop Believin’

Our world is absurd. The sign language fraud at Mandela’s funeral? Comic gold. Sometimes, it’s as if Andy Kaufman didn’t die, but resumed his seat in Heaven as G-d.

The Obama party-crashers, remember them?

What do you do for an encore but marry a washed-up rocker—and then charge for it?

White House party crasher and one-time reality TV star Michaele Salahi tied the knot with Journey guitarist Neal Schon in San Francisco over the weekend.

CNN affiliate KGO reports the event took place under the rotunda at the Palace of Fine Art, and the couple made the ceremony available to viewers on pay-per-view for $14.95 – money that will in part go to typhoon relief in the Philippines.

Who’s had more work done? Don’t stand either one of them too close to a flame or other source of heat.

Salahi, a former star of Bravo’s Real “Housewives of D.C,” first gained national notoriety in 2009 when she and then-husband Tareq Salahi attended a state dinner at the White House without an invitation. They were were even were photographed with President Barack Obama.

Schon and Salahi’s romance made headlines in 2011 when her former husband reported her missing when, unbeknownst to him, she had traveled to Memphis, where Journey was performing, to be with Schon. The Salahis filed for divorce shortly thereafter.

I wonder of the Obama’s sent a gift? Maybe a collection of his speeches on CD.

PS: How many wedding invitations contain the phrase “check your local listings”?

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#getcovered

No hurry, mind you!

In the heady days after the October 1 launch of the Affordable Care Act — better known as ObamaCare — Lady Gaga, Amy Poehler, Nina Dobrev, Rosario Dawson, Sarah Silverman, Olivia Wilde, Alicia Keys, Jennifer Hudson, Pearl Jam, Lance Bass, John Legend, Alyssa Milano and Kerry Washington joined the President to encourage Americans to #getcovered.

Since then, technical glitches and website snafus have so marred the ObamaCare website that the team who built it has been called to testify before Congress on Thursday. But there will be no celebrities flanking them on Capitol Hill, as the stars that helped launch the initiative are now being advised to walk away.

“Hollywood has gone from pushing #getcovered to heading for cover,” Dan Gainor, VP of Business and Culture at the Media Research Center told FOX411. “Stars like Lady Gaga and Sarah Silverman pushed their ObamaCare propaganda to more than 67 million fans on social media. But don’t expect them to be honest about the situation.”

Of course, some you wish would walk away won’t:

Publicist Ronn Torossian of 5WPR agreed. “When things go wrong, naturally celebrities won’t want to be outspoken. But don’t expect them to be quiet for long,” he said. “They will stand up again as soon as President Obama asks them to.”

Enter Scarlett Johansson. One of President Obama’s best celebrity friends (she revealed during his campaign that the two were text buddies), Johansson has lent her voice to a Planned Parenthood message that’s played when calls are placed to some of their health centers. “Did you know you may be able to enroll in new, more affordable health insurance plans?” Johansson asks before directing callers to a Planned Parenthood section on the new Affordable Care Act website.

For the love of all that is holy, Scarlett, walk away. Just walk!

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Be [Bleeping] Presidential!

You might as well ask a dog to conjugate French verbs:

Samuel L Jackson has blasted Barack Obama for dumbing down the way that he talks to normal Americans, telling the political leader to ‘be f*****g presidential’.

The Holywood legend, who publicly backed Obama’s reelection campaign in 2012, said he is frustrated with the way the head of state talks, questioning why he chooses to drop the letter ‘g’ from the end of his words.

Speaking in an interview with Playboy magazine, the actor questioned the president’s reasons for changing his speech, saying: ‘First of all, we know it ain’t because of his blackness, so I say stop trying to “relate”.

‘Be a leader. Be f*cking presidential. Look, I grew up in a society where I could say “It ain’t” or “What it be” to my friends.

‘But when I’m out presenting myself to the world as me, who graduated from college, who had family who cared about me, who has a well-read background, I f*cking conjugate’.

Or, as Obama would say: I f*ckin’ conjugate.

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Out of the Mouths of Boobs

File under: “Old News”

In 2003, ahead of a U.S. attack on Iraq, a robust anti-war movement in Hollywood included a TV commercial starring Martin Sheen and Sean Penn visiting Baghdad. There were online petitions signed by Ed Asner; letters to President George W. Bush pleading for peace were signed by Matt Damon, Tim Robbins, Barbra Streisand and Alec Baldwin; former M*A*S*H star Mike Farrell fronted multiple press conferences where celebrities denounced war. In interviews, Janeane Garofalo stopped identifying herself as an actor — she preferred to be called a member of the U.S. anti-war movement. [Because that acting career was really going gangbusters, wasn't it? Ed.]

The good news for President Barack Obama as he considers a military response against Syria for using chemical weapons against rebels is that he probably won’t have to deal with a similar anti-war movement from Hollywood. But that’s not because there isn’t opposition. It’s just not organized, and, as Asner and Farrell – two of the industry’s most vocal progressive activists — told The Hollywood Reporter Friday, perhaps it never will be.

“What he is talking about in Syria is a potential war crime,” Farrell said. “It will be illegal, and if citizens are killed it certainly could be considered a war crime.”

And? So?

Another reason some Hollywood progressives have been reticent to speak out against war in Syria, according to Asner, is fear of being called racist.

“A lot of people don’t want to feel anti-black by being opposed to Obama,” he said.

That covers all criticism of President Obama. Their beloved Chris Matthews would turn on them in a heartbeat. “Lou Grant is Bull Connor!” And the corollary is also true: all praise of Obama is purely pro-black. You don’t need to hear it from me; listen to Ed Asner (just this once).

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The Content of Their Handbags

The things I miss when I’m away. Oprah Winfrey tried to buy an expensive handbag in Switzerland, and was encouraged (though even that word is too strong) to consider a cheaper model.

Justice 4 Trayvon!

Jesse Jackson hasn’t yet declared Zurich the new Selma, but from some of the news coverage you’d think Oprah Winfrey was the next Rosa Parks. The former TV-talk superstar experienced what New York’s Daily News calls “a disturbing racial incident” last month at “the posh Trois Pommes boutique” in Switzerland’s largest city.

In Winfrey’s account, she wanted to examine a Tom Ford handbag and asked the clerk to retrieve it from its glass display case. “She says, ‘No, it’s too expensive,’ ” Winfrey told “Entertainment Tonight.” “She said, ‘No, no, no you want to see this one because that one will cost too much. You won’t be able to afford that one.’ . . . She said, ‘I don’t want to hurt your feelings,’ and I said, ‘OK, thank you so much, you’re probably right I can’t afford it.’ Now why does she do that?”

She added: “I could have had the big blow up thing and thrown down the black card but why do that?” (Because membership has its privileges.) But she did not forgo the opportunity to subject the clerk to world-wide scorn.

It seems there was a language barrier: The clerk’s English isn’t great, and Winfrey probably doesn’t speak Swiss. “This is an absolute classic misunderstanding,” the store’s owner, Trude Goetz, told Reuters, which paraphrases her explanation: “The sales assistant had wanted to show Winfrey that the bag was also available in other materials, which may have given the TV host the impression the shop did not want to sell it to her, Goetz said.” The News reports that Goetz apologized to Winfrey via a Swiss newspaper, but in her Reuters interview she implied that the celeb’s account didn’t make sense: “Who wouldn’t want to sell a purse for 35,000 francs?”

Thirty-five thousand Swiss francs is equivalent to some $38,000, or 72% of the median U.S. household income. If most women spent that kind of sum on a handbag, all they’d have is an empty handbag. That’s not true of moneybags Winfrey, but even she was put off when she eventually learned the price tag: “Turns out that store clerk did me a favor. Just found out that bag was $38K!!! She was right I was NOT going to buy.”

Oh, well, never mind then.

Evidently, such an account of this story raised controversy. So James Taranto had to answer for himself:

So, one of the richest women in America (#14 according to Forbes—none of her billions inherited), whose popularity put Phil Donahue out of a job and who owned daytime TV for more than a decade, alleges—or might have had she chosen to—racism for being persuaded to consider a cheaper handbag than the nearly $40k purse she was eyeing? A bag she didn’t buy because it cost too much, just as the shopgirl told her?

Is that the state of racial politics in the world today? Oprah is blowing wads of cash in Swiss boutiques while the Obamas frolic in the most exclusive tracts of Martha’s Vineyard. Except for Chicago schoolchildren, black people have seemingly never had it so good.

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When the Going Gets Tough

The “tough” blame Rush:

President Obama told donors like Jessica Biel, Justin Timberlake (who was wearing hipster glasses), and Tommy Hilfiger that Washington gridlock is pretty much Rush Limbaugh’s fault on Monday evening at a fundraiser at Harvey Weinstein’s house in New York’s Greenwich Village. Obama admitted that his theory — that after the 2012 election, the Republican “fever” would break, and they’d decide to co-sign some of his agenda — was wrong. “My thinking was when we beat them in 2012 that might break the fever, and it’s not quite broken yet,” Obama said, according to the White House pool report. This is because of a certain corpulent radio host. “I genuinely believe there are Republicans out there who would like to work with us but they’re fearful of their base and they’re concerned about what Rush Limbaugh might say about them. And as a consequence we get the kind of gridlock that makes people cynical about government.”

Obama left Weinstein’s home for another DNC fundraiser at the home of Alexandra Stanton in Manhattan’s Tribeca neighborhood, before a DCCC/DSCC event at the Waldorf Astoria…

Oh, by the way, it cost $32,000 per couple to attend. What a man of the people! What a party of the little guy!

His administration is engulfed in the flames of scandal, corruption eats away at the foundation of our government, millions of jobs are still absent from the economy—and he sees fit to blame a radio talk show host for gumming up the works. I almost can’t believe it as I write it. Does it get any more pathetic? Of course, I’d say something dopey too if I were in the presence of Jessica Biel.

But Rush was in a forgiving, even generous, mood!

RUSH: … He is fixated on me. He simply cannot get me off his mind. I live rent free in his head. And he is using me as his convenient excuse for not being able to get anything done. He really thinks the Republicans would work with him if it weren’t for me. So he’s telling these Hollywood people — and you gotta understand, they’re sitting there and they’re very sympathetic, and they love Obama, and they want Obama to succeed. I’m the guy who said, “I hope he fails.”

Who am I? I’m a guy on the radio. I am your beloved host, El Rushbo. I’m a guy on the radio. The fact remains that the truth of the matter is, by his own admission, I am the opposition to Barack Obama.

Not the Republican Party.

Not any of the Republican think tanks.

Not any of the Republican consultants.

Not any of the Republican political action committees.

I, your beloved host, El Rushbo — soon to celebrate 25 years behind the Golden EIB Microphone — I am the obstacle. I am the Mister Big. I am the wall. I am the obstacle. I’m the one thing in his way, and he’s very comfortable in telling people that I’m it.

I am offering to make myself available to the president at a summit so that we can hash this out, so that I can explain to him why it is that I oppose what he’s trying to do. Maybe we can come to some sort agreement. My mother always told me, “Son, talk it out with people. Don’t go off mad and don’t get all uppity and don’t get angry. Talk it out with people and see if you can solve it with him.”

All I hear is how I am the problem. This is the fifth or sixth time now the president has told supporters that the one obstacle to him moving his agenda forward is me, Rush Limbaugh, because the Republicans are afraid to agree with him.

Of course just last week, folks, I was irrelevant and about to be thrown off the radio because I’m so insignificant. This changes, seemingly, on a weekly basis. So I continue to make the offer and I’ll make it again today. I’d be happy to advise the president on how best to proceed, given current circumstances.

Rush has a line of iced tea drinks, Two if by Tea. How about a Tea Summit. Like the Beer Summit with the Cambridge cop (who “acted stupidly”), only with tea. Come on, Mr. President! Bring the whole family!

You always do.

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Didya Watch the Oscars?

I never do, but my newest excuse is to boycott such displays of excess and debauchery when there is so much misery and want lurking in the shadows cast by the klieg lights.

Of course, I know I’m missing something:

But I can’t ignore the cruel reality:

Why should there be Hollywood millionaires when as many as 5,000 people might have been exposed to a new strain of TB unique to Los Angeles?

Does Steven Spielberg have no heart? Why does Jeffrey Katzenberg hate poor black people? Do George Clooney, Anne Hathaway, and other Beautiful People even bother to pee on the homeless as they walk by? Or do they not even see them?

Here’s another picture for them:

Love ya, Halle, mean it—but I can’t get romantic with you while so many people are suffering on the streets of Los Angeles.

PS: The Wikipedia page refers to “one of the largest stable populations of homeless persons in the United States”, but isn’t that an oxymoron? How can the homeless be described as stable? Isn’t the very idea monstrous?

PPS:

Now, don’t give me that come hither look, Salma! A man’s got only so much will power.

That’s better.

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We Like Them! We Really Like Them!

With the frequency of a blind clock or a stopped squirrel or Tom Friedman, President Obama is right once in a while (okay, forget Tom Friedman).

“I do think at a certain point you’ve made enough money.”

Last year, the Academy spent $38.3 million on the awards show and its satellite events, up nearly $3 million from 2011. Using a combination of figures publicly released by the Academy during the past six years as well as estimates and price quotes from comparable vendors, THR has calculated the distribution of funds and highlighted a few line items from the Oscars’ annual ledger.

Producers’ honorarium: $100,000-plus
As a token of gratitude for overseeing the massive enterprise, the Academy sends the telecast’s producers (this year: Craig Zadan and Neil Meron) a thank-you card and a check in the low-six figures.

Host’s fee: $15,000-$25,000
The responsibility of keeping the awards show entertaining and ending it on time goes to the host, and for shouldering that burden, first-time host Seth MacFarlane is paid above the $15,000 SAG-AFTRA minimum.

Oscar statuettes: $45,000
The value of the 24-karat-plated mini man is tied to the price of gold, currently about $1,600 an ounce. THR calculates that each of this year’s 50 statuettes from manufacturer R.S. Owens is worth about $900.

The set: Less than $1 million
The cost of the Dolby Theatre set is comparable to that of a major musical: at least several hundred thousand dollars. The Academy saves by renting equipment that vendors are loath to loan to open-ended Broadway runs.

Winners’ envelopes: $10,000
Stationery designer Marc Friedland spends 110 hours laminating, hand-folding, goldleaf-stamping and embossing 488 nominee cards, but only the 24 bearing the winners’ names will be revealed onstage.

The red carpet: $25,000
Unaffiliated L.A.-based Red Carpet Systems quotes $1.50 per square foot for the priceless experience of walking the world’s most famous crimson corridor, which is 500 feet long and 33 feet wide.

Sounds like the only people doing well in the ObamEconomy are Hollywood luvvies and federal workers (whose pay raise, ordered by Obama, kicks in next month). Figures: politics is just show business for ugly people, as the saying goes.

At least show business pays off the investment:

The city also benefits: The Los Angeles Economic Development Council says Oscar fever injects $130 million into the economy every year.

The Academy reported $89.6 million in Oscar-related revenue in the financial statement it released in June. The bulk of that income is from the Walt Disney Co., which pays $75 million annually for the rights to broadcast the awards show through 2020.

But when you open your paycheck today, and see that extra deduction for the payroll tax, I hope you think of that $25,000 red carpet and the 100k each two guys earn for one night’s work.

And think of Obama’s guys’ golf outing with Tiger Woods and Butch Harmon while you’re at it. As long as somebody’s enjoying himself, right?

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