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Posts Tagged ‘Eliot Spitzer’

Alexis Grenell: Lis Smith Latest Victim of ‘Slut-Shaming’

In the world of news, it’s never the man who is the “bimbo.” So argues political strategist and columnist Alexis Grenell in today’s New York Daily News.

DailyNewsFront_12_24On Sunday, incoming mayor Bill de Blasio‘s communications chief Lis Smith was revealed to be dating Eliot Spitzer. The ensuing coverage, suggests Grenell, has been all too familiar:

Regardless of her taste in men, Smith has the right to make her own decisions. Her relationship with Spitzer is entirely irrelevant to her qualifications as de Blasio’s spokeswoman.

Yet in news reports, Smith has been transformed from an accomplished adult into a “leggy” sexpot and her professional future called into question because her choice of romantic partner raises eyebrows.

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Weiner Dodges WaPo ‘Worst Campaign of 2013′

TheFixLogoThe choice by Chris Cillizza today of Chris Quinn over Anthony Weiner for the worst political campaign of 2013 has baffled a number of WaPo readers. We share the commenters’ befuddlement.

Then again, per an exclusive MAD magazine preview  today on The Huffington Post, even when Weiner is comically paired with former would-be Comptroller Eliot Spitzer for a Wangs of New York poster (complete with bulging NYC skyline), it’s still not good enough for top spot on “20 Dumbest Things of 2013.” So maybe Cillizza isn’t entirely off the off-base.

Expect to see plenty more Weiner roasts between now and the waning hours of New Year’s Eve. Elsewhere today for example, USA TODAY Network’s Ashley M. Williams leads off her rhetorical rundown of dingbats with Weiner, followed by Lance Armstrong, Alex Rodriguez, Alec Baldwin and others.

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Fake New Yorker Item Fools Italian Magazine

Four strikes and he’s still not out. That is the frightening lesson to be gleaned from the latest example of an MSM outlet being duped by a satirical, fake Web news item.

On Monday, Andy Borowitz joke posted on The Borowitz Report that 76-year-old Italian billionaire Silvio Berlusconi was contemplating a run for some sort of New York City public office. On Tuesday, Italian time, the website for the man’s very own weekly Panorama news magazine ran with the item. As Rome-based freelancer Eric J. Lyman writes in The Hollywood Reporter, many warning signs were ignored:

The magazine did not appear to recognize the impossibility of the premise given that Berlusconi does not speak fluent English, is not a U.S. citizen and has never been a resident of New York – or that he is currently under indictment in four separate trials in Italy.

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Eliot Spitzer, a Party for Angela Cummings and the Story Behind the New Bernie Madoff Documentary

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In keeping with the usual head-spinning weekly scene that is Wednesdays at Michael’s, the joint was jumping today. It was SRO in the front dining room and at the bar where producer Beverly Camhe was holding court with fellow producer Marc Altshuler and writer/directors Derek Anderson and Victor Kubicek in celebration of their upcoming documentary In God We Trust Who Pays for His Crime on the Bernie Madoff scandal. The film will debut in the highly coveted Friday night slot at the Tribeca Film Festival next week.

Bev tells me the tickets for the highly anticipated film sold out in ten minutes when they went on sale at with American Express last night, and they are currently looking for a theater to handle the overflow. For those of you who missed the boat entirely, there’s always pay per view. Bev says anyone who sees the film should prepare to be shocked. “Don’t believe what you’ve heard. You’ll be surprised to know who knew what and when they knew it.” For the record, Bev believes that both Madoff sons, the late Mark Madoff and Andrew Madoff, didn’t know anything. I would have loved to have explored that very topic myself when I spotted Mark at Michael’s last spring, but he bolted before I could ask him anything about their father’s massive Ponzi scheme. “Bernie was a bi-polar sociopath, so it’s entirely possible he was able to keep it from them,” says Bev.  I asked Marc if they’d heard from any of the Madoffs or insiders since they began production, and he told me, “They’ve been oddly quiet. I’m surprised they even stayed in New York.” Some people have no shame.

Mickey Ateyeh and Angela Cummings

Not all the action was in the main dining room. I was invited to the swanky lunch held in the Garden Room for Angela Cummings today celebrating the launch of her new collection with Assael. Mickey Ateyeh, Angela’s long time BFF and business partner gathered 24 New York power gals – the ladies who never eat lunch who actually lunched today – for an intimate gathering.  The first to arrive was Liz Smith followed by a veritable who’s who in New York social and business circles, including Paula Zahn, Linda Fairstein, Jackie Leo,  Barbara Taylor Bradford, Christy Ferer, who is in hot pursuit for her company’s next CEO (Anyone?), Fern Mallis, DuJour‘s Cindy Lewis and Judy Licht

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New York Post’s First eBook is Written by Former Call Girl Ashely Dupré

You had to know that The New York Post would only enter into the eBook business if it could do so in a ridiculous way. Thankfully, the paper did not disappoint. The Post’s first eBook will be the pun-tastic Tricks of The Trade, written by Ashley Dupré, Eliot Spitzer’s favorite, um, writer.

Tricks of The Trade is a collection of the Post’s “Ask Ashley” columns, which are penned by Dupré. The advice is billed as “An honest guide to sex, love, lust, and healthy relationships.” We assume the Post is joking about the “healthy relationships” part, but you never know.

“Many of our readers have already embraced the Post’s digital products, and we believe this new venture into eBooks will prove very popular,” said Jesse Angelo, publisher of the Post, in a statement.

Tricks of The Trade ($5.99) is available for download from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Apple’s iBookstore, Google eBooks and more.

Power Lunching with Eliot Spitzer, Star Jones and Joanna Coles

1003_mockup.gifIt’s the last Wednesday power lunch of the year (or the last one ever if you believe those wacky Mayans), and the usual suspects at Michael’s came bearing gifts to be traded over Cobb salads today. Some regulars (Linda Fairstein) were hosting year-end catch-ups with pals, while others (Steven Stolman) broke bread with their bosses. Of course, even if Christmas is less than a week away, there are those who mean business with lunch.

I caught up with Eliot Spitzer while he was waiting for his guest to arrive and asked him how he’s faring over at Current TV. “Nobody’s watching, but I’m having a great time,” he told me. “I don’t mean to be facetious, but I am really enjoying myself. It’s like having a cocktail party with friends every night.” Pausing for a moment he added, “Somebody needs to buy the network.” And perhaps they will, he mused, if for no other reason than to snap up Current’s distribution system.  Either way, New York’s former governor isn’t quitting his day job, so to speak. “I’m glad all my investments are in real estate, not media companies, but if someone can make money at it, great.” Indeed.

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Best-selling author Linda Fairstein, hosting her annual holiday lunch for her former colleagues from her days as head of the city’s sex crimes unit. “I love doing this for these women who are all tops in their field. We’ve been having this lunch every year for over a decade, and for one afternoon they are treated like queens of the world,” Linda told me as she placed artfully decorated gift bags at each place setting embellished with the words ‘Boss Lady.’ The incredible women who were taking a break from their usual daily grind of solving and prosecuting the city’s most heinous crimes: New York Supreme Court Judge Ann Donnelly, Karen Friedman-Agnifilo, trial division chief; Audrey Moore, chief the Special Victims’ Unit; cold case division head Melissa Mourges, who just this week got a conviction on the ‘Dating Game’ murder; Kerry O’Connell, chief of the trial bureau; and Martha Bashford, head of the Sex Crimes Unit. Ladies, I salute you.

2.  Peter Brown

3. ’Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and David Zinczenko (Happy Belated Birthday!)

4.  PR scion Steve Rubenstein

The holiday scene at Michael's

The holiday scene at Michael’s

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DISH CEO Pooh Poohs Idea That AMC Shows Will be Back On DISH Anytime Soon

Eliot Spitzer, Michael Buffer and Glenn Beck

At a bizarre press conference here in New York, the CEO of satellite TV company DISH Network said that there did not appear to be an end in sight regarding the ongoing carriage feud between DISH and AMC Networks.

The CEO, Joseph Clayton, was asked point blank whether AMC programming would be on DISH anytime soon. “Not that I am aware of,” was his brief retort.

Clayton was ostensibly there to promote a debate between Current TV host Eliot Spitzer and former Fox News host Glenn Beck, but DISH’s other PR incidents were also prominently featured. The other big controversy is over “Auto-hop,” a DISH DVR service that automatically skips commercials for viewers.

“Do you want someone telling you can’t skip commercials in the privacy of your own home? Are you kidding me? Come on,” Clayton said. “I don’t know how the courts will rule on this, but I know in the court of public opinion we have already won this one.”

Beck concurred with Clayton.

“[Commercials] are important, but they don’t work the way they did in 1955, it is not the 1950’s anymore, it isn’t even the same century anymore,” Beck said. “It has to be innovative.”

John Fugelsang Gets a Current TV Show

FishbowlLA was lucky enough to be at the Pantages this past weekend for the LA stop of Stephanie Miller’s “Sexy Liberal Comedy Tour.” Although she and radio compadre Hal Sparks were both excellent, the guy who really stole the show was another one of her radio-TV regulars, John Fugelsang.

Right on cue, Fugelsang announced this morning on Miller’s program broadcast live from the TCA that he is getting his own Current TV series in the fall, joining Miller, whose three-hour daily syndicated radio offering is now being broadcast. For the handsome young comedian and new father, this is a natural progression at the network, where he has appeared as a commentator and guest hosted for network personalities such as Eliot Spitzer and Jennifer Granholm.

From this morning’s accompanying release:

“We at Current are eager to bring John’s unique perspective on politics and the world around him to primetime,” commented Current TV chairman Al Gore. “He’s been a part of the Current family for a while now and we see just how much his voice resonates with our audience. His new show will nicely complement our growing lineup.”

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Eliot Spitzer Joins NY1′s Inside City Hall as ‘Wiseguy’

Since Eliot Spitzer had the “governor” dropped from his name, he’s made waves in broadcasting. His latest move in that path, Spitzer has been added to NY1′s political coverage. He began as a guest-host on MSNBC, before getting his own short-lived show on CNN, and in March got his own show on Current TV. And now he’s adding NY1′s Inside City Hall where he’ll be one of the program’s three “Wiseguys” along with former Mayor Ed Koch and former Senator Alfonse D’amato.

“I am delighted to be joining two of New York’s sharpest political minds to discuss the important issues of the day,” Spitzer says.

The trio will explore the biggest political issues beginning next week.

“Former Governor Eliot Spitzer is one of the smartest people I know,” Koch says. “His joining Wiseguys broadens its political insights. Welcome aboard, Eliot,” said Koch.

“Eliot will certainly add some spark to the Wiseguys. Look for more fireworks!” said D’Amato.

Spitzer was born and raised in the Bronx and is a graduate of Princeton University and Harvard Law School, where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review.

NY1′s Inside City Hall, hosted by Errol Louis, is telecast from 7 to 8 weeknights with a replay at 10pm.

Eliot Spitzer on CNN’s Identity Crisis: ‘There’s No Objectivity in Network News’

1003_mockup.gifIt was the usual Wednesday mix of moguls (Jon Tisch), media men (Richard Beckman, Mike Perlis) and television honchos (Henry Schleiff) today at Michael’s. With this Type A crowd, summer vacations are for slackers — at least until August. From the looks of things, there were plenty of deals being done (or at least pitched) between bites.

I was joined today by Eliot Spitzer and Lisa Linden. The last time the three of us had lunch, New York’s former governor was headlining his own show on CNN, In The Arena, which replaced the short-lived Parker Spitzer which he launched with co-host Kathleen Parker in 2010. About a year ago, CNN boss Ken Jautz cancelled In The Arena in a shakeup of the network’s primetime lineup. “I’m very happy with the show we did and the ratings we got, which were good to compared to what they’re getting now,” Eliot told me.  Not surprisingly, he says he prefers and is better suited for Current TV’s politically charged environment. “Current has an ideology. There’s no pretense; we’re open about it. CNN tries very hard to position itself as an non-ideological news network, but there’s no objectivity in network news. It would be better for all of us if we just accepted that.” Therein lies the major issue with his former employer’s rating woes, says Eliot: ”CNN has a serious question of what it is and they’ve got to answer that.”

Having stepped in seemingly hours after Keith Olbermann was booted from Current TV, Eliot took to the airwaves with the aptly titled Viewpoint in Olbermann’s old time slot with no promotional campaign or PR machine to attract viewers (although Olbermann’s own campaign to get his side of the story out gave the fledgling network plenty of attention). But the show does have co-founder Al Gore‘s support (he’s been a guest on Viewpoint) and Eliot says Joel Hyatt is very involved in the “day-to-day” running of the network. “They have been great. I’ve known Al since 1999 and I like him very much. He’s a great guy.” (BTW you can see what Joel had to say about all those supposed dust-ups with Olbermann in this Mediabistro interview.)

Eliot Spitzer and Diane Clehane
Eliot Spitzer and Diane Clehane

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