Newsweek Staff

Stories by Newsweek Staff

  • Global Effort

    Margaret Thatcher is going to break ranks with the United States, Canada and the Soviet Union by calling for a stabilization of carbon-dioxide emissions at current levels by 2005. The British prime minister's decision came after she reviewed a report by the respected Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which concluded that emissions resulting from human activities "are substantially increasing" concentrations of greenhouse gases, thus leading to increased global warming. Emissions would have to be reduced by more than 60 percent to stabilize concentrations in the atmosphere, the report says.
  • Lust And The Middle-Aged Lawyer

    You remember the narrator of Scott Turow's "Presumed Innocent"--he was a prosecutor who stood trial for the murder of a woman colleague--but do you remember the lawyer who defended him? Probably not. Alejandro Stern is fat and stuffy, a workaholic who chainsmokes cigars. Neglectful of his family, Stern also keeps his distance from the common way of speech: "I would probably never bother you," he explains to a cop, "were I not waylaid with a moment on my hands." Relegated to the margins of an ingenious story, so tedious a character can't cause much damage-- yet in his new novel, The Bur den of Proof (Farrar Straus Giroux. $22.95), Turow blunders. He's made Stern the central figure. ...
  • Out Of Bounds

    California Democratic gubernatorial candidate Dianne Feinstein, for shamelessly and endlessly exploiting the Hillside Strangler murders to win votes. The most recent example came last week in a debate with her opponent John Van de Kamp, the former state attorney general who did not prosecute for murder in the case. "I know how those women were killed. And I have visions of them bound, their mouths taped, spread-eagled, choked to death," Feinstein said at one point.
  • This Is Big. Reeeeally Big.

    For years, the goal in computing has been to make things smaller, building down from early room-size monsters to today's palmtop PCs. Even computer terms--like "bit" and "microprocessor"--connote tininess. Now The Computer Museum, Boston's repository of vintage number-crunchers and intriguing interactive exhibits, has gone the other way: a really, really BIG computer, two stories tall. It boasts keys a foot across, six-foot-wide disks and--get ready for this oxymoron--the biggest microchip in the world, 7 1/2 feet square. The WalkThrough Computer, a new permanent exhibit modeled after such displays as the walkthrough human heart at Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry, will give visitors a chance to see the soul of a new machine close up. No wonder the museum is calling the June 21 unveiling "the biggest event in computer history." Steve Jobs, eat your heart out. ...
  • The Leaders Next Time

    "We have no order and we never will, because we walk on our heads and think with our bottoms," wrote Soviet citizen Vasily Yenot in Moscow News earlier this month. It was a pungent expression of a growing Soviet sentiment: true reform is beyond the competence of the present leadership. While few expect President Mikhail Gorbachev to leave power voluntarily or otherwise any time soon, Muscovites are beginning to gossip about possible successors. Following are sketches of some of the most prominent. They typically belong to the generation born just before or during the second world war: old enough to have been brought up in orthodox Communist Party folkways, yet young enough to be untainted by association with Stalinism. All are rising in influence All are people to watch: ...
  • The Death Of Democracy

    The pictures looked like Japanese atrocities against the Chinese in the '30s--or Goya's images of war. In fact, they were supposed to represent justice, the summary justice dealt to protesters across China after the Democracy Movement massacre. Apparently to discourage new protests, police commissioned Chinese photographers and TV crews in one university town to document a public execution. As the first anniversary of the massacre approached, a photographer smuggled his film of the shootings last year to Paris. His photos showed the killing fields where the movement died. ...
  • Autarky: A New Challenge

    Richer than Saudi Arabia: that's what people in the trans-Urals region of Tyumen say they could be if allowed to sell their oil themselves. It is worth about $37 billion a year, and Moscow takes virtually all of it. In Yakutia, Siberian diamond and gold prospectors are of a similar mind: they're agitating for control of their own mines. And in a move that provoked outcry in Moscow, the Uzbek Council of Ministers passed a law prohibiting consumer goods from being sold outside the republic. ...
  • Measles Mystery

    A mysterious outbreak of measles has already killed three children of Hmong immigrants in Minnesota. The deaths are the first since the last measles outbreak in 1980. Though there are only 15,000 Hmong in the state, the Laotian tribesmen have contracted almost half of the state's 489 measles cases. The disease is common in Southeast Asia and researchers are trying to determine whether the Hmong are more vulnerable than other ethnic groups. Public-health agencies are offering clinics and door-to-door nurse visits. But many Hmong can't read warning notices and fear shots will give them the disease.
  • Cabinet Edition

    The arrows on HHS chief Sullivan go up with each anti-smoking salvo; those of Attorney General Thornburgh and Education Sec. Cavazos are still headed downtown. ...
  • A Fine Mess

    The long census nightmare continues. As if census takers haven't already had enough difficulty getting people to cooperate, they now have a credibility problem. In Houston, con artists posing as census takers have been trying to fine people $50 for not turning in their forms. The scheme was discovered when a real census worker making routine checks of nonfilers was told by several people, "Oh, an enumerator already came by wanting to collect that fine." The Census Bureau, by the way, does not fine people for not reporting. Meanwhile, in Iowa, an overzealous census worker was suspended for violating confidentiality rules after he told police he smelled marijuana in a person's home.
  • Future Shock In The Old West

    Am I nuts, or is Michael J. Fox getting smaller? Maybe it's just the cowboy outfits that he wears in Back to the future Part 111: stick Fox under a ten-gallon hat (well, say, eight) and the whole Fox configuration seems to dwindle, like a male Alice in Wonderland. Or maybe the series itself is dwindling (creatively, that is, not at the box office). In a way the BTTF movies are a contemporary version of the Alice books, with Wonderland becoming a dimension in time rather than in pure imagination. The first BTTF (1985), however, was an act of imagination--sweet, charming, witty, even wise. The adventures of Marty McFly (Fox) and his adorably bananas scientist friend Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd), as they traveled back to Marty's past, put all sorts of spins on themes like kids, parents, pop culture, growing up and love. But BTTF II and now III are formula movies, whiz-bang rides in producer Steven Spielberg's titanically profitable amusement park. ...
  • If You Don't Mind Bad Vibes...

    For $219,000, Reading Real Estate outside Boston is shopping "an immaculate home on a quiet street" that features three bedrooms, a spacious country kitchen, a pool and a hot tub. The only catch is, the house belonged to Chuck and Carol Stuart before the infamous husband allegedly killed his wife, then jumped off a bridge. The realty company isn't commenting on who the house belongs to. Although the killing did not occur at home, it would be wise to note that a California real estate agent was recently held liable for not telling a buyer that a multiple murder had occurred in the house she bought. Reading's concern is understandable: the crime is such a sensitive subject in Boston that the TV movie about it is being filmed in Chicago.
  • 'Dear Mommy, How Are You Doing?'

    It is Mother's Day at the Lorton Correctional Complex outside Washington, D.C., and Michael, 10, is waiting impatiently as the women in camouflage pants file into the gym. Finally, Jennifer Nimmons, who is serving 18 months on a drug charge, arrives and Michael rushes into her arms. He has brought his mother a present: a cutout of a dancing bear with a letter on its stomach, which he reads aloud. "Dear Mommy, How are you doing in the hospital? Have a happy mother's day, this is a poem for you. 'Roses are red, Violets are blue, You are the best mother, I ever wrote to.'" Then he asks: "Is this a hospital?" ...
  • One Step Closer To War

    He was the last moderate leader left in the Kashmir Valley. At Friday prayers, Moulvi Mohammed Farooq often criticized India's ironfisted administration of the I predominantly Muslim state. But he preached that Muslim and Hindu must live in peace. That was no protection. Farooq, 45, was alone in the early morning stillness of his house on Nagin Lake last week when three young men confronted him. Gunfire brought Farooq's family rushing to the scene, but his killers escaped. As secessionist fervor flared, at least 60 people were killed when Indian troops fired on chanting crowds bearing the rosecovered coffin through the capital, Srinagar. With another peacemaker out of the way, India and Pakistan moved a step closer to war.There aren't many such steps left. The two sides talk peace, but both are shopping for arms, NEWSWEEK learned. Another war over Kashmir--the last was in 1965--could be catastrophic. India has exploded a nuclear device and Pakistan is developing a bomb; both could...
  • The Sound Of British Soul

    Her singing has the sultry, sophisticated soul smooch of a Whitney Houston or a Sade. But Lisa Stansfield, 24, is a white woman from the north of England, and she's exploded on British and U.S. pop charts like a Guy Fawkes' Day firecracker at the Apollo--where she recently aroused wild cheering. Stansfield, whose trademark is the whimsical kiss curl on her forehead, has no formal vocal training. But she does have a sly wit. "I think it's really cheeky," she says, "that we've taken American music, put our stamp on it and sold it back to the Americans." And the Yanks, far from being miffed, are turning the other cheek to the kiss-curl girl: Stansfield's first single, "All Around the World," shot up to number three on Billboard's "Hot 100" chart.
  • For Sale: The Shuttles

    In the midst of all the recent turmoil in the airline industry, there always seemed one steady, profitable business--the Northeast shuttle services. Whether owned by Eastern, Pan Am or Donald Trump, the shuttles have been viewed as highflying cash cows. Operating in the Boston-New York-Washington corridor, their passengers are almost all business travelers whose companies seemed unfazed by ever-increasing fares. "It's like owning a cable-TV company," observes Paul Turk. an airline consultant. "There's not much competition and you can move prices without affecting traffic much." ...
  • Women In Jail: Unequal Justice

    Californians call it The Campus, and with its low-lying, red-brick buildings set against 120 acres of dairy land, the California Institution for Women at Frontera looks deceptively civilized. The illusion ends inside. Constructed in the early 1950s as a repository for 800 or so wayward ladies, Frontera today holds more than 2,500 women at any given moment. The convicts complain that guards spy on them while they're showering or using the toilet. Inspectors have found rodent droppings and roaches in the food. In a lawsuit against the state, inmates charged that shower drains get so backed up, they have to stand on crates to avoid the slime. ...
  • The Man With Two Brains

    After three quiet years, Scott Turow is back. This is launch week for his latest novel, "Burden of Proof," with a first printing of 800,000 copies. Come August, the film version of his 1987 thriller, "Presumed Innocent," starring Harrison Ford, will be out. (That book has sold 5 million copies, and the movie rights brought $1 million.) Now, on the eve of his new book tour, two pressing legal cases have come up that the workaholic author attorney can't--or won't--dish off to other lawyers in his office. It's shaping up to be another schizophrenic summer for the man with two souls. ...
  • Rabbit Rerun

    Most 50-year-old retired movie stars don't get a chance at a comeback. But last week Bugs Bunny began hopping up again. For the next year, before most regular feature films, theaters in the 1,700-screen AMC chain will show a vintage Looney Tunes short starring demicentenarian Bugs and his cohorts. AMC made the move after a poll revealed that what audiences wanted most--after concession stands with health food--was cartoons. Carrots are not for sale.
  • Phony Smokes From Cuba

    The capitalist spirit is alive in Cuba. Last week three men were convicted in Miami of smuggling cigarette-manufacturing equipment into Cuba in order to make counterfeit Winston cigarettes. Documents seized in the arrest indicate let the counterfeiters planned to make $2.1 million from the operation. U.S. Customs officials say that, in order to get the fakes off the market, the R J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. bought up all 90,000 counterfeit cartons in Holland. The officials say Winston was the only brand faked because the counterfeiters were working with a former RJR engineer who knew how to duplicate that blend.
  • A Scapegoat On The Iowa?

    From the start, a strong odor of doubt hung over the Navy's official verdict that last year's disastrous explosion on the battleship Iowa was "most probably" set off by a suicidal sailor. Last week, prodded to act by a senator with new findings and a scientific report, the Navy said it would reopen its investigation--and disclosed the first solid evidence that the disaster may have been an accident after all. ...
  • Mommy Vs. Mommy

    Tension between mothers is building as they increasingly choose divergent paths: going to work, or staying home to care for their kids ...
  • New Fuel For The Intifada

    Days earlier, the commander of Israel's forces in the West Bank had pronounced the intifada "in retreat." But then a former Israeli soldier described by authorities as "deranged" opened fire on a group of unarmed Arab laborers near Tel Aviv, killing eight. The gunman, 21year-old Ami Popper, told investigators last week that his rampage was triggered by a shattered romance, not by politics. "An odious act of insanity," said Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir. But within hours of the shootings, Palestinians in the occupied territories swarmed into the streets, sparking the most violent rioting since the early days of the 30-month-on intifada. ...
  • Assault Weapons: A Setback For The Nra

    Only the day before, the National Rifle Association was confidently predicting a victory and the gun-control forces were bracing for defeat. Yet when the fight was over, the Senate had voted to ban nine types of assault weapons from the U.S. market. Champagne corks poped for the biggest gun-control triumph in years on Capitol Hill, and Sarah Brady, who has become the movement's most prominent speaker since her husbands near fatal wounding in the 1981 assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan, was exultant. After its "devastating, huge loss," she said, the NRA has turned into "a paper tiger." ...
  • In Defense Of Reagan

    It is time somebody said it: "Let's hear it for Ronald Reagan!" Count me in the chorus that gives George Bush a high approval rating, but don't include me among those who think being pro-Bush demands bashing Reagan. The current momentum of public and press opinion paints our former president less like the first since Ike to have served for two full terms and more like a deposed dictator who was forced upon us and whose yoke we finally have thrown off. Our public memory is mercilessly fickle. No wonder politicians lament, as did Montana's once powerful senator Burton K. Wheeler on his retirement, "Let 'em be ungrateful to someone else for a while."Not that Reagan has not made mistakes in retirement. He seems not to have acclimated to being an ex-president nearly so well as he acclimated to the presidency. Like actors, ex-leaders should avoid stepping on their successors' lines. Once the spotlight is turned to another, politicians are best served when their public does not see them,...
  • An Idyllic Life Of Crime

    Dreamlike Fryburg, Calif., is America's bicycling capital. It's also home to a bunch of mobsters, plunked down in paradise by the federal witness-protection program. In "My Blue Heaven," due in July, Steve Martin is Vinnie Antonelli, a relocated crook who sets up shop in Fryburg without fear of prosecution. One crime he doesn't commit: dressing to kill. Vinnie clearly never saw Steve Martin's classic "Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid."
  • Too Little And Too Late?

    Small flurries of panic buying began even before Prime Minister Nikolai Ryzhkov delivered his speech. Then the flurries became a wave. Shoppers in Kiev raced from store to store last Friday, buying twice the usual amount of cooking oil, six times as much flour and eight times as much macaroni as they had purchased on an ordinary day. But those days ended abruptly when Ryzhkov made his announcement to the Soviet Parliament. The government proposed to double the price of food at the beginning of next year; bread prices would triple on the first of July. Angry miners spoke of a strike--possibly similar to the walkout that paralyzed Soviet industry last summer. Ukrainian Prime Minister Vitaly Masol vowed his republic would "stand in firm opposition" to the Moscow plan--and even Mikhail Gorbachev failed to give it much of an endorsement. Within a single day Ryzhkov was left vulnerably alone, pleading with the public for "restraint and calm." ...
  • Christo's Latest

    Some people are going to say Japan is living up to its picky, no-fun stereotype. Christo, the Bulgarian-born artist who wrapped in fabric Paris's landmark bridge, Pont Neuf, five years ago, is planning to string 1,300 blue umbrellas across a Japanese valley and 1,700 yellow ones in California. But Japan, unlike California, has taken a regulatory stance and is requiring enough documentation to fill a Yellow Page-size binder. Christo, no stranger to red tape, is finding the Japanese overly fussy. But then, maybe wind-testing a 450-pound umbrella isn't such a bad idea.
  • The Bad News Bears

    When the stock market talks, everybody listens--even the frowning bad-news bears. The Dow Jones industrial average hit a new high in May, and most of the pessimists beat a retreat. Individual investors have been piling into stocks since December by buying stock-owning mutual funds. That may be bad news. Market lore says the public is always wrong. ...
  • It's Not Boring, It's High Concept

    ABC gets credit for renewing "'Twin Peaks," but blew it by nixing "Anything But Love." This is especially true given the interesting plots of next year's shows, including:(Zzz) Cop Rock, ABC A musical. Imagine cops inhaling jelly donuts, then bursting into arias. Bochco's chutzpah is appreciated, but c'mon.(Zzzzzzzzzzz) Baby Talk, ABC This spinoff of the uniquely dumb movie "Look Who's Talking" also features that comic impresario, Tony Danza, as the baby's voice.(Zzzzzz) Going Places, ABC "The Dick Van Dyke Show" was funny, but it had Dick Van Dyke. This one's about comedy writers writing a comedy show.(Zz) Fresh Prince of Bel Air, NBC Rapper plays a poor Philly kid dumped in moneytown. Sounds like "The Famous Teddy Z" with less Yiddish, more rhyming.PHOTO (COLOR): "Baby Talk'PHOTO (COLOR): "Fresh Prince'Subject Terms: TELEVISION programs