Newsweek Staff

Stories by Newsweek Staff

  • Boesky Washes His Dirty Linen In Public

    For four years Ivan Boesky has been Wall Street's unseen villain. Under wraps, then behind bars, the former takeover speculator implicated some of the biggest names in the financial markets by giving secret testimony before federal grand juries. Boesky's singing led to guilty pleas of securities violations by, among others, Drexel Burnham Lambert and junk-bond king Michael Milken. Finally last week Boesky, 53, materialized, testifying in public for the first time since he copped a plea to insider-trading schemes. ...
  • Holding A Bad Hand

    What's the matter with Mikhail Gorbachev? Never has a leader of the Soviet Union looked so weak coming to a summit with an American president. In Moscow, political upstarts to his right and left openly ridicule him. The Baltic States are trying to peel away; as many as four more Soviet republics may follow. After five years of tinkering with the economy, he has fixed too little, too late; but more radical reforms promise inflation and unemployment--and the danger of strikes and food riots. Gorbachev's opponents are too weak to topple him. Yet, even as he tightens his grip on the government, the government loses control over the country. ...
  • On Reform: Prime Time For Crime

    In the control room at Moscow police headquarters, lights on the wall map are flashing while Yuri Ivanov directs telephone traffic. "I used to be able to take naps on the night shift," says Ivanov, an operator on the night shift. "Not anymore." Tonight, there's only one murder: a report comes in about three women who buried a bloody 7-month-old infant by a creek in northeastern Moscow. Criminal investigator Vladimir Orlov and his team jump into a creaking old van and careen up to the site. "Democracy and all the changes in our society" are behind the current crime boom, says Orlov. "People don't i have any sense of control over themselves these days." ...
  • Keep Holding Your Breath

    For nine years, every time the Clean Air Act of 1970 came up for renewal, Congress managed to duck. It just couldn't resolve wrangles between lawmakers looking out for the interests of the automobile and other industries and those more concerned with cleaning up the muck that passes for urban air. While Congress contented itself with simply extending the old law, much of the nation's air got dirtier on several measures, and half the population now breathes unhealthy air. But even Congress can't ignore burning lungs forever, and last week the House voted overwhelmingly to strengthen the act. Besides mandating reductions in acid rain and airborne toxics, the bill will affect what's put into the tanks of America's 178 million vehicles. Trouble is, these provisions may not do enough to clear the air. ...
  • Togetherness

    For the record, the Kryptonite Corp. has not come out on either side of the abortion debate. But that hasn't stopped anti-abortion protesters from using the world's toughest bicycle locks to keep police from dragging them away during sit-down protests. The right-to-lifers are locking themselves to clinics, cars or anything else that will let them obstruct traffic longer. Kryptonite is reporting increased calls from police departments asking how to thwart the locks. The best solutions: get a locksmith to drill out the cylinders or employ gigantic Jaws of Life cutters used for auto wrecks.
  • Marla Is Feeling Blue (As In Jeans)

    For a while there, Marla Maples was a decidedly sympathetic character. But now that she's used her other-woman status with Donald Trump to make a big killing, all bets are off. The Marla will earn an estimated $600,000 as the latest huckster--and symbol of true womanhood--for No Excuses jeans, the "A Current Affair" of clothing manufacturers. The aspiring model, who had previously shown real class by turning down offers to sell her story, now joins Donna Rice in the great pantheon of spurned but quite wealthy dates.
  • Sit Down, Taxpayers

    It's official: the S&Ls are in even worse shape than the government told you. Last week Treasury Secretary Nicholas Brady confirmed independent reports (NEWSWEEK, May 21) of ballooning bailout costs. He admitted to Congress that the taxpayers' tab for the thrift crisis could be as much as $130 billion--about 75 percent higher than estimates announced just last August. Budget director Richard Darman warned that the numbers were "just very, very much larger than the budget system is designed to handle." ...
  • Buzzwords

    Want to start your own van line? Movers pack their own special patios: Chowder: Odds and ends, usually thrown into one box. Movers hate this stuff, they'd rather move a piano.Sticks: Furniture.Bedbug haulers: Drivers who truck household goods cross-country.O.S.: Overstuffed.Lumpers: Beefy guys who lug items between the house and the truck.Straight house: A one-story house.Blackjack: An upright piano. Tesselation: The art of packing a truck to fill every nook and cranny.
  • 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. ...