News

News

More Articles

  • The Nightmare Scenarios

    The chance that real economic calamity might strike the United States after eight years of expansion has riveted public attention like a highway wreck on a Sunday afternoon. Newspapers and TV newscasts shudder with doom and gloom. The stories roll up every real or imagined recent economic sin--soaring debt, the budget and trade deficits--into one great monster that is going to drive America into a Great Depression. The headlines all but scream REPENT! THE END IS NEAR! ...
  • Making Saints

    On the morning of Aug. 1, 1987, the small lobby of the Hotel Gulich in Cologne, West Germany, was filled with Jews. They were members of a clan, about two dozen in all, whose German ancestors had been scattered by Hitler's pogroms to the United States, South America and Canada. Four of those ancestors had died in Nazi death camps. One of the victims was Edith Stein--"Tante Edith" to her nieces--who, as Sister Theresa Benedicta of the Cross, was to be proclaimed a martyr that afternoon by John Paul II. But a martyr for whom? To Jews around the world Edith Stein was one of 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust. To the pope she was also--and primarily--a martyr for the church. ...
  • Slow Out Of The Gate

    Just one month ago, the 1992 Democratic presidential nomination looked about as desirable as a weekend in Baghdad. With George Bush riding high in the polls, party strategists talked of a sacrificial run by Texas Sen. Lloyd Bentsen, who would lose gracefully; others proposed clearing the field for Rev. Jesse Jackson and "getting him out of our system," as one official put it. But the fallout from the budget follies has dramatically altered these scenarios. For the first time in a decade, voters think the Democrats would manage the economy better than the Republicans, and '92 is starting to look like a real opportunity. "In the next few months, a lot of 'vision' speeches are going to be cranked up," says Democratic speechwriter Kevin Sullivan. ...
  • The Kids Play--And You Pay

    The scene: screaming children cavorting in a knee-deep sea of green, red, yellow and blue plastic balls. They swim in them. They bury themselves under them. And they dive into them with the daredevil zealousness of an Evel Knievel. A playground? No, it's the activity room at the IKEA furniture store in Elizabeth, N.J. While they hunt for the affordable armoire, parents who visit the Swedish home-furnishings company can "check" their kids at the playroom for up to two hours. Here, the little ones watch videos, draw pictures or immerse themselves in the popular ballroom--under the supervision of babysitters. Says Maria mother of three: "The kids want to come here just to play." ...
  • Anti-Semitic Or Merely Nasty?

    The profile of media mogul Mort Zuckerman in the current GQ is nasty, but is it anti-Semitic? That's the complaint being leveled against the magazine and writer Alicia NIundy by some media heavies--and Zuckerman's friends They think the article played up Zuckerman's Jewishness to buttress charges that the owner of U.S. News & World Report and The Atlantic is a shameless social climber. The complaints were aimed at such lines as "There's Mort the Jew and Mort the WASP" and the comparison of Zuckerman to the fictional Jewish character Duddy Kravitz. GQ editor in chief Art Cooper, who is Jewish, says he has received compalaints from at least one major magazine editor. But Cooper says the charges of anti-Semitism are "nonsense" and that a negative story about a rags-to-riches Jewish person often prompts such a response. Mundy, an editor at Washington's Regardie's magazine, says the allegations are "absurb" and adds that both of her editors at GQ are Jewish.
  • Gershwin From Hamptons To Harlem

    There is a certain uneasiness on Broadway these days about the question of "nontraditional casting." An increasingly multiethnic talent pool has added political pressure to the normal uncertainties of theater. There have been critical complaints that certain black or Jewish performers were miscast in Shakespeare. Protests by Asian performers led to the recent banning, then unbanning, by Actors' Equity of British star Jonathan Pryce, who plays a Eurasian in the New York-bound megamusical "Miss Saigon." Black versions of white shows, long a Broadway staple, now come under sharper scrutiny: are they esthetically justified, or are they a gimmicky form of affirmative action? ...
  • Two-Coast Man

    How many actors have the comic touch to play the fast-ball, slow-brain minor-league pitcher Nuke LaLoosh in "Bull Durham" and the dramatic power to play the life-in-death hero of "Jacob's Ladder"? Well, Tim Robbins has done it. His mild, 6-foot-4, Bill Bradleyish look belies the off-center versatility that's made him a hot property at 31. Robbins is a two-media, two-coast man. The son of folk singer Gil Robbins, he grew up in Greenwich Village (where he still lives with Susan Sarandon, the mother of his year-and-a-half-old son). At 13 Robbins was acting with the off-off-Broadway group Theater for the New City. "We did political street vaudevilles; at 14 I played H. R. Haldeman," says Robbins. "I learned how to act in the street, competing with truck noises, mothers yelling at kids and drunks coming on stage and dancing." ...
  • Mr. Reagan Went To Washington

    FOR A PRESIDENT SO DEPENDENT ON TV, RONALD REAGAN HAS DONE A FAST FADE FROM THE BIG SCREEN OF POLITICS. HE APPEARS IN PUBLIC ONLY RARELY, AND IS NOTICEABLY ABSENT FROM ANY OF THE DEBATE SURROUNDING THE ISSUES OF HIS EIGHT YEARS IN OFFICE. REAGAN'S JUST-RELEASED AUTOBIOGRAPHY, AN AMERICAN LIFE,[*] WRITTEN IN THE HONEYED PROSE OF A HOLLYWOOD PRESS RELEASE, OFFERS FEW CLUES TO TAKE US BEYOND THE MAN'S POPULAR IMAGE. MUCH OF THE BOOK IS FAMILIAR, FROM THE HARANGUES ABOUT GOVERNMENT HANDOUTS TO THE OFT-TOLD STORIES OF HIS EARLY CAREER AS A SPORTSCASTER. REAGAN'S WHITE HOUSE RECOLLECTIONS ARE SO ROSE-COLORED, THERE ISN'T EVEN ANY GOOD GOSSIP. THE FORMER PRESIDENT DISPLAYS NONE OF THE VENOM TOWARD HIS AIDES THAT NANCY REAGAN SPILLED IN HER BOOK, "MY TURN." ...
  • Twinkle, Twinkle

    The fall party season is in full swing, and big baubles are popping up everywhere. Recently, at the glittering Carousel of Hope Ball in Beverly Hills, Elizabeth Taylor showed up--with goldilocked beau Larry Fortensky--looking positively robust in pink. They joined 1,000 other big names at the benefit to fight juvenile diabetes. Basia Johnson, on the other hand (and coast), could have used a few fashion tips. The chambermaid turned heiress to the Johnson & Johnson fortune appeared at a New York soiree to help save crumbling Venetian landmarks draped in a Renaissance-look frock she designed--but trimmed with all those emeralds, who was looking at the dress?
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

    In 1974, Nancy Kaiser made the mistake of coming down with an illness that didn't fit any of the available diagnoses. The Albuquerque housewife was just 38, an avid golfer and swimmer, and under no particular stress. Yet she felt like she was dying. She was weak, profoundly tired and plagued by constant bladder infections. Her muscles ached. Her mood shifted unpredictably. Her memory seemed to be failing. "If this is menopause," she remembers thinking, "this is horrible, worse than I ever imagined." Her doctors could offer no better guess, so after seven awful years she agreed to a hysterectomy. When her health didn't improve, physicians referred her to psychiatrists, who announced she was mourning her lost uterus. One suggested she have an affair. ...
  • From Pit Bull To President

    After flipping on taxes and flopping on the deficit, George Bush was searching for new directions last week. "Shift gears with me," he urged an audience of Ohio Republicans as he ripped into Saddam Hussein. His scorched-earth campaign against those tax-and-spend Democrats seemed forgotten, and Bush the Partisan Pit Bull was acting presidential again. "His spirits are soaring," one aide said. "He thinks he can turn this thing around now." ...
  • Night Of The Living Videos

    Jim McCabe, the owner of a Washington, D.C., video-rental business called Video Vault, brags of two convenient locations, bargain prices and "the guaranteed worst movies in town." McCabe, who opened his first shop in 1985, knew it was hopeless to imitate the large national chains whose "superstores" had begun to dominate the video-rental business. So McCabe packed the racks with the drive-in fare of his South Carolina youth: titles like "Night of the Bloody Apes," "She Devils on Wheels" and "Shanty Tramp." "The chain stores have shelves of cult movies," says McCabe. "I've got rooms. " ...
  • Deathly Vacancy

    Some New Yorkers will do anything for a cheap apartment. Last Wednesday, NEWSWEEK learned a New York City medical investigator was summoned to a building on Manhattan's West 43rd street where a longtime tenant had suffered a fatal heart attack. After pronouncing the man dead, the investigator discovered the deceased's rent-stabilized, one-bedroom apartment rented for about $300 a month. Without missing a beat, the investigator, Jules Lisner, notified the building's management company of the death--then asked if he could put a deposit down on the apartment. "It was bad judgment," admitted Lisner, who has been reprimanded by his superiors.
  • Bush: 'I Have Had It'

    Some of them inhabit Baghdad's luxury hotels, where boredom and homesickness are the biggest threats to their well-being. Others hide in Kuwait, in constant terror of discovery by Iraqi troops, and get by on the kindness of Arab friends. Still others serve as "human shields" at Iraqi military bases and other potential targets, where living conditions range from the uncomfortable to the unspeakable. All of them, fugitives and prisoners alike, are the unwilling "guests" of Saddam Hussein. Last week the hostages, including nearly 1,000 U.S. citizens, began their fourth month of Babylonian captivity. ...
  • Bill Paley's Historic Will

    Jeffrey Paley rose to speak last week at the small private funeral service for his father, the man who built CBS. He explained the complexity of being the child of someone so much in the public eye. William S. Paley was not the first father to give more attention to the larger world than to his children, Jeffrey noted, and he would not be the last. But the scale was different: "He wasn't one to play baseball in the backyard with his kids," Jeffrey said. "Yet he owned the New York Yankees, my childhood idols." Paley's will, unsealed last week, reflected that same approach. All six of his children, including two stepchildren, were treated generously (Paley's second wife, Babe, died in 1978). But the jewel of his $500 million estate--a magnificent art collection--went to his foundation, with instructions that it be given to New York's Museum of Modern Art. ...
  • The Hunk's Happy Hour

    The bar is open at last to John F. Kennedy Jr. Friends of the Manhattan assistant D.A. say he has finally passed the New York bar exam after failing twice. Official results come out this week. Passing means Kennedy keeps his $30,000-a-year job. He could also seek greener pastures. In July, Kennedy took the easier Connecticut test, along with New York's. He passed that as well.
  • War And Recession

    This is a peculiar time in political Washington. It is hagridden by uncertainties and apprehension. "Do you think there is going to be a war?" That is one of the most frequently exchanged questions. The other is "How bad do you think it is going to be?"--meaning the coming recession. People here seem to sense something menacing and inevitable, but as yet unseen, advancing in their direction. In some respects their constant querying seems less a quest for expert judgment than for reassurance. We are like those anxious characters in the suspense movies who have just heard an unmistakable creaking on the stair. ...
  • Stirring Old Hatreds In India

    Once again India has fallen victim to its tendency to self-destruct. And this time the stakes couldn't be greater, for the battle threatens to revive the country's most explosive division--the split between Hindus and Muslims. India's leaders have tried to avoid such a confrontation from the moment of India's modern birth in 1947. They established a secular Constitution in the hope that the Hindu majority and a large Muslim minority could live together in peace, if not necessarily in harmony. Though the reality sometimes fell short of the dream, India survived in spite of its simmering religious, ethnic and caste divisions. The country has suffered through the grievances of smaller groups, like the Sikhs in Punjab. But now it is being pulled apart by a much greater force. In the last eight days alone, more than 300 people have been killed in Hindu-Muslim riots and in clashes between Hindu fundamentalists and government forces--all over the fate of a disputed mosque. ...
  • Giorgio Takes Manhattan

    Last week all eyes were trained on the fashion runways of Calvin, Ralph and Geoffrey, but it was Giorgio Armani who stole the show. The Italian designer, who seldom visits these shores, was all over New York City doing a little personal PR (even Saks Fifth Avenue pronounced it "Armani Week"). After appearing at the opening of a photo exhibit called "Giorgio Armani--Images of Man," he held court at a lavish dinner for 250 carefully chosen guests at the Museum of Modern Art. The occasion for this little ciaodown was a screening of "Made in Milan," a documentary about, who else Armani. The 26-minute film, made by buddy Martin Scorsese (who received a reported $2 million fee), depicts the designer's life and work in embarrassingly egotistical detail, leading some wags to dub it "Paid in Milan." Though there were scattered titters in the MoMA audience, most kept their sniping under wraps.
  • For Longer Life, Take A Wife

    Mothers and matchmakers have always known that not being married is a definite health hazard. But when a team of researchers from the University of California, San Francisco, reported a few weeks ago that middle-aged men without wives were actually twice as likely to die during a 10-year span as men with wives, the espoused and the spouseless alike stopped to take notice. It was the kind of news that swept through offices and watering holes--and it made people feel smug or anxious, depending on their circumstances. Now the researchers who conducted the study are trying to find out what accounted for the dramatic differences in survival rates. ...
  • Cold Confusion About Dr. Pons

    The mysteries of cold fusion are nothing compared with the mysteries of cold--fusion scientists. A year and a half after he and a colleague announced they I had achieved nuclear fusion in a tabletop experiment, University of Utah chemist B. Stanley Pons has disappeared--and so could his funding if he doesn't turn up. ...
  • Tug Of Death

    In 1984, John Joubert was convicted and sentenced to die for the murders of two young boys in Nebraska. Then, this year he was extradited to Maine, where he was tried and convicted of another murder. The catch is, Maine doesn't have the death penalty and Nebraska is having a tough time getting back the killer it wants to electrocute on Dec. 7. Maine has agreed to return Joubert to Nebraska, but not until he is sentenced. That could take months. Joubert has also tried to delay his death date by filing a lawsuit over Maine prison conditions.
  • Handicapping A Cabinet Shuffle

    A senior White House official has told NEWSWEEK that after the Nov. 7 election it may be "open season on moves" in the Bush cabinet. Elizabeth Dole left her post at Labor last week. A possible replacement: Rep. Lynn Martin. Some informed speculation on other possible moves: If the GOP takes a drubbing in the election, he may split to head the RNC. Lee Atwater is still ill and the beleaguered party requires full-time leadership.Ed head has been in Bush's doghouse from the start but may hold on; sacking a Hispanic could get messy. If his head does roll, say hello to former N.J. governor Tom Kean.Frustrated by lack of attention from The Boss on domestic issues, he's now interested in the U.S. trade rep's post. But that's filled--for the moment--by Carla Hills.He's recovering adequately from a ghastly start. But if he continues to stumble, Transportation chief Sam Skinner--a Bush favorite--could slide in nicely.
  • Fashion Bottoms Out

    Last week we saw London, we saw France, and we saw Claudia Schiffer's underpants. At the Paris fashion follies, the susupermodel from the Guess? jeans ads lumbered down the Chanel runway like an elephant terrible, flashing oversize white briefs under her sheer black outfit (a fantasy come true for some, no doubt). The Duchess of York, meanwhile, was making an uplifting entrance as she glided into New York City's Rainbow Room looking svelte in taffeta. The new generation of royals, after all, does keep abreast of the latest fashion trends.
  • The Art Of The Deal

    The conflict between the two George Bushes--the shrill, partisan politician and the kinder, gentler president--was never clearer than it was last week. Appearing at a Republican fund-raiser in Irvine, Calif., the partisan Bush complained that "the Democratically controlled Congress simply has been on an uncontrolled spending binge for years. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to know that Congress has been spending more than we take in for far too long." Then, mindful that his hopes for cutting the federal deficit depended entirely on those very same Democrats, Bush turned on a metaphorical dime. He praised the opposition for "working cooperatively" on the deficit deal, adding "for that, I salute them, because I firmly believe that we must get an agreement to start getting these deficits under control." ...
  • Running The Numbers For U.S. Families

    Never have so many labored so long to raise so little from so few. The nation's 720,000 or so families earning more than a year will absorb the new tax package's only large increases. Congress nickeled and aimed the rest of the $20 billion in revenues from small jumps in federal excises, payroll deductions and income taxes. A look at how the cookie crumbles: ...
  • Making Babies After Menopause

    Borrowing an egg is now an accepted practice among young women who want to get pregnant but can't produce one themselves. But because women over 40 have trouble making babies under the best of circumstances, they've never been considered likely candidates for the procedure. Conventional wisdom holds that once an older woman stops ovulating, her childbearing days are over. It now seems the conventional wisdom was wrong. A group of doctors reported in last week's New England Journal of Medicine that they have managed, using donated eggs, to impregnate several women who had gone through menopause. "The limits on the childbearing years are now anyone's guess," Dr. Marcia Angell, an editor at the New England Journal, observed in a commentary on the new study; "perhaps they will have more to do with the stamina required for labor and 2 a.m. feedings than with reproductive function." ...
  • Confessions Of A Counterfeiter

    Javid Naghdi has traded his business suits for an orange prison jumpsuit and blue sneakers. But he retains the con man's pitch that brought him notoriety in the U.S. Justice Department as "the most dangerous prescription-drug counterfeiter known to the FDA." He admits that he used his pharmacy training to put fake arthritis pills on the U.S. market. His excuse? Others do it, he said last week in the U.S. Penitentiary at Atlanta, where he is serving a 14-year sentence that began in May. "Half the drugs in this country are counterfeit," he said, a claim experts reject as nonsense. ...
  • The Big Chill In The Upper Crust

    Is he the devil? If so, can the devil get justice?" In Reversal of Fortune this question is asked by Sunny von Bulow (Glenn Close) speaking from within the coma that still enwraps the real Sunny today. Having the "brain dead" heiress narrate the film is one of the clever, unsettling and even brilliant ideas that drive this black comedy about the von Bulow case. The devil, of course, is Sunny's husband, Claus von Bulow, the Danish-born aristocreep who was convicted in Rhode Island of twice attempting to murder Sunny by injecting her with insulin. The movie is based on the book by Alan Dershowitz, the highly visible and audible Harvard law professor and champion of lost causes who won a new trial for von Bulow, at which he was acquitted. ...
  • Fat Cities

    Medium-size cities lead the nation in gobbling fast food. Here's the Junktown, U.S.A., hit parade: CITY ANNUAL SPENDING PER PERSON Wilmington, N.C. $511 Honolulu, Hawaii $502 Anchorage, Alaska $472 Lexington-Fayette, Ky. $444 Huntsville, Ala. $443 Indianapolis, Ind. $440 Decatur, Ala. $438 Raleigh-Durham, N.C. $435 Anaheim, Calif. $418 Dothan, Ala. $417
  • Sound Bytes, Neon Dreams

    In a dimly lit rehearsal hall in Oakland, Calif., the musical instruments are glowing a neon blue. They are electronic marimbas that a group called D'Cuckoo uses to create sounds ranging from a traditional African drum to a modern guitar riff to a dog's bark. Handmade out of plexiglass, computer chips and neon tubes, the marimbas are played with drumsticks. The music is hot and engaging-entirely unlike the chill beeps and boops of earlier electronic music. "We want to build totally new instruments," says D'Cuckoo member Patti Clemens. "We knew what we wanted from our instruments and it didn't exist." ...
  • Does Sununu Need Help?

    In the aftermath of political bungling in the budget debacle by chief of staff John Sununu and budget director Richard Darman, close friends of President Bush are urging that outside help be brought in to straighten out the White House staff. Among the contenders for temporary posts as presidential counselors are former white House aide Ken Duberstein, ex-Nixon aide and longtime Bush friend Fred Malek and GOP pollster Bob Teeter. It's likely the appointments would be opposed by the thin-skinned Sununu--whose bullying ways inflamed the budget mess--and by Bush himself.
  • Island-Hopping On Broadway

    Every season a big off-Broadway hit sticks its neck out on Broadway. Once on This Island is a perfect orchid of a musical, a small show with a big soul. First produced at Playwrights Horizons on 42nd Street's Little White Way, it now makes the terrifying three-block jump to the big time. This show crowds more entertainment into 90 minutes than most big musicals with lots of filler and please-love-me noise. And it even has a socio-esthetic issue for those who need one. Can a young, white songwriting team capture the tone, color and rhythm of another culture? ...
  • How Much Is Enough?

    For nearly three months now, American military power has poured into the Persian Gulf, at a speed outstripping the U.S. buildup in Vietnam a generation ago. But last week the Pentagon announced, in effect, that it wasn't enough. Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney said much more muscle was needed "to deal with any contingency," which included the possibility of offensive action to drive Iraqi forces out of Kuwait. The plan was to send the equivalent of at least two more mechanized divisions to join the 210,000 Americans already stationed in the desert or at sea. In all, Cheney said, the reinforcements might amount to as many as 100,000 troops, some of them drawn from U.S. garrisons in Western Europe. It will take at least another month to get the new units into place, which suggests that a military showdown with Iraq may not come until the turn of the year--if it happens at all. ...
  • Melting The Man Of Steel

    Look: it's a box, it's a bauble, it's an engagement ring! After 62 years (how typically male) Clark Kent (a.k.a. Superman) pops the question to fellow Daily Planet reporter Lois Lane over a romantic tuna melt (also typically male) in the current issue of "Superman" comics. Seems Superman feels it's time to make the big leap after archenemy Lex Luthor and some red kryptonite cause him to lose his powers (though it means he can also stare deeply into Lois's eyes without scorching her). After he regains his mythical talents, Lois says yes to his proposal and now he must figure out how and when to tell her who he really is (she still hasn't figured it out). No wedding date has been set, but DC Comics editor Michael Carlin is sure there will be a Lois and Clark expedition to the altar: "We're sticking by our guns." Any superbrats in their future? "Well, he's an alien, she's an earthling, and I'm not a scientist," Carlin says. "There's always adoption."
  • First Class For The Sandinistas

    Remember the Sandinistas with their romantic revolutionary rhetoric? Now Daniel Ortega and some of his associates have become capitalist entrepreneurs: they have started Central American Air Lines, scheduled to begin flying the lucrative Managua-Miami route this week. The airline is pushing its first-class accommodations. When asked if the enterprise offers profit sharing for employees, one of the Sandinistas involved said, "We have to make money first."
  • The Geritol Solution

    Can tiny sea creatures get us out of the greenhouse fix? This week, scientists at a National Research Council workshop are assessing whether iron, a nutrient, an stimulate marine algae to absorb more of the carbon dioxide causing global warming. By one estimate, if CO[sub2] emissions remain at 1990 levels, CO[sub2] concentrations in the air will increase 23 percent by 2040. If it worked, the iron strategy would help, but it wouldn't be a cure. Its advocates predict a CO[sub2] rise of 13 percent. Without other cuts in CO[sub2], not even Geritol can fix the greenhouse. ...
  • Buzzwords

    It's hunting season again on the prairie. Here's how conservation officers talk about hunters in the heart of the heart of the country: Sports: Pejorative shorthand for sportsmen. A sport is a violator who hasn't been caught yet.Ditch pigs: Sports who lie in roadside ditches waiting for geese or ducks to fly over.Pilgrims: Rookie or inexperienced hunters.Low shoes: Pilgrims who go shooting without hip boots or waders and then kill a duck that falls in the water and can't be retrieved.The iron-pony show: Deer season on the prairie when sports go hunting the animals in pickup trucks and four-wheel-drive vehicles.Pillsbury Doughboys: Sports wearing brand-new, puffed-up, down-filled hunting suits.Creek (pronounced crick) dicks: What hunters call
  • How To Tough Out A Layoff

    In my business, if you've never been fired you haven't played for the biggest stakes. At a dinner once, I quizzed the table: who had ever lost a job? Practically all of us, as it turned out. Me, twice. A TV producer I know, who has been fired by all three major networks (and is now back at work at one of them), framed his get-lost letters and hung them in the guest bathroom. On my own second time around, I bought a T shirt. On the front it said, "Yes, I was fired." On the back, it said, "Again." ...
  • The Court's Mr. Right

    Once a month, Supreme Court Justice Antonin (Nino) Scalia pulls up a chair at the most lawyerly poker game in Washington. Around the table sit some of the jurisprudential overlords of the Beltway: Chief Justice William Rehnquist, lawyer-saxophonist Leonard Garment, Senate special counsel Bob Bennett. The cuisine is deli sandwiches and ale. There is one house rule: no talk of work. And several house customs first, the game doesn't end when the husky guy starts singing. Scalia is an exuberant man and arias are just part of his style. And second, don't fold when Scalia starts raising the stakes. By reputation, he's a lousy bluffer who plays out every hand. Says one regular "Nino would rather lose than fold." ...
  • The King Of Television

    When the company was smaller and its founder loomed larger, they called CBS "Paley's cigar store." Even then it didn't really fit his style: he always ran the place the way Louis XIV ruled the court at Versailles. Still, he liked the appellation enough to decorate his office with a wooden Indian (a whimsical counterpoint to his Picassos and Klines), and relished his days selling La Palinas for his father's cigar firm. William S. Paley was a man entranced by images, and he used them to construct a legend. For more than half a century, no media monarch exerted a greater influence over what the wired nation saw and heard. ...
  • Daily News To Unions: Drop Dead

    The final rupture of the second largest local newspaper in America began with a torn cartilage. A Brooklyn worker monitoring a conveyor belt last week was denied permission by his foreman to remain seated so he could rest his knee. When the union representative objected, an argument ensued. This was just the incident management had been looking for. After 30 delivery-truck drivers walked out in protest, they were told their jobs were gone. On an hour's notice in the middle of the night, management assembled replacements. Their transport buses were quickly assaulted by workers wielding baseball bats. Forty delivery trucks were vandalized and eight burned. Executives condemned the violence, but to them the smell was of victory. ...
  • Bhutto Gets Booted Out

    In the end, two comebacks were one too many for Benazir Bhutto. Jailed and exiled after her father, former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, was deposed and then hanged by the Pakistani military Bhutto returned to win election in 1988 as the first woman prime minister of a Muslim country. But her political inexperience showed. She neither lived up to the expectations of her supporters nor outmaneuvered her enemies. In August, Pakistan's President Ghulan Ishaq Khan, acting with Army support, dissolved her government, charged her with unprecedented corruption and jailed her husband, Asif Ali Zardari, for extortion. (Both Bhutto and Zardari deny the charges; he is still in custody.) Last week came the final blow. A rightist coalition backed by the military crushed her Pakistan People's Party in parliamentary elections. ...
  • A New Vision Of Paradise Lost

    The last time Americans threw a centenary bash to honor the European discovery of America, in 1892, the speeches were all about power, prestige and money. New York Gov. Roswell Pettibone Flower said of Columbus and his fellow explorers, "They dreamed of wealth, and here it is beyond imagination's farthest limit." Lest anyone miss the governor's point, one magazine of the day illustrated his remarks with a picture of a bank vault holding $72 million in gold. To those accustomed to thinking of the Admiral of the Ocean Sea in more heroic terms, that quote must sound embarrassingly materialistic. But it isn't. For once, a politician's rhetoric was right on the money. ...
  • 'A Really Nasty Business'

    In Nigeria last month, authorities learned that 109 children had died of kidney failure after ingesting an industrial solvent; hospitals mixed it into syrup in the belief it was a pharmaceutical chemical made in the Netherlands. In Mexico, officials confiscated 15,000 counterfeit burn remedies; many contained sawdust, coffee or dirt and caused raging infections. In Burma, scores of villagers may have perished after taking worthless copies of a drug meant to combat malarial fever. In Europe, hospitals and pharmacies handed out millions of pirate doses of a cardiac medicine, some at only half the purported strength. (There were no known casualties.) In the United States, the emergence of a $100 million black market in anabolic steroids has spurred drug counterfeiting despite a congressional crackdown in 1988. ...
  • Monday Night's New Game

    Ten o'clock Monday night. On ABC, it's third and 15 in the second quarter and the ref has called offsides for the fifth time Over at CBS, the Brown everyone's talking about isn't a Cleveland running back but fast-talking reporter Murphy Brown (Candice Bergen). And the Rosie who's coming in after half time isn't the onetime member of the Giants' Fearsome Foursome but public defender Rosie O'Neill (Sharon Gless). At ABC, the offense and the defense are strong and tough; at CBS, they're tough and smart--but the tackles are verbal and most of the players (especially the quarterbacks) are-women. They'd get penalized not for holding but for mouthing off. ...
  • Three's Company

    Even in this age of the overextended family, "a three-parent, two-natural-mom situation is ripe for crazy-making," said Orange County, Calif., Superior Court Judge Richard Parslow. Last week he granted sole custody of 1-month-old Christopher Michael to his genetic parents, Mark and Crispina Calvert, after the woman they paid to carry their test-tube baby sued to help raise the child. The surrogate, Anna Johnson, was denied any visitation rights and will appeal.
  • How Safe Is Your Job?

    Lynne Waller Scanlon was living that anointed 1980s lifestyle: great job, great digs, great toys. She ran two advertising-industry publications and had just beefed up her ad-sales staff. Did she have problems? Sure: it was hard to remember whether she had left her briefcase at her New Jersey home, her place in the Hamptons or her Manhattan pied-a-terra. Then she found out what trouble really is. Late one afternoon last March, her boss called her into his office, asked his secretary for a glass of water and then closed the door. "I have some very bad news," he said. "This is it. This is the last day." Facing a slowdown in the advertising and publishing industries, her company had decided to kill both publications. Scanlon was told to fire her entire staff by the end of the day--just 59 minutes away--and clean out her own desk. Her head was spinning. " 'How am I going to tell my staff?' I remember thinking," and then, ""At least he got me a glass of water.' then he drank the water...
  • The Stories Never Stop

    What would happen, asks one of the great storytellers of our time, if all the stories stopped? If they became ugly and polluted, turned into grotesque caricatures of themselves, and then disappeared altogether? The end of stories is silence, warns Salman Rushdie, a blank space where once the imagination sang freely. Rushdie's wonderful new novel Haroun and the Sea of Stories (216 pages. Granta/Viking $18.95) will be published in November, and while it can be read on many levels, at heart this children's book for grown-ups is a tribute to the pleasures, and terrible powers, of storytelling. Underground for nearly two years now, Rushdie remains besotted with stories; he won't be silenced. ...
  • Fight For A Name Of His Own

    Two-year-old Anthony Goeppner Garetto is too young to understand but he's having an identity crisis. His divorcing parents, Mary Garetto and Tom Goeppner of Chicago, each want him to bear different surnames. Separated from her husband when she delivered Anthony Garetto, 31, put her maiden name on the boy's birth certificate. Goeppner, 30, says he didn't know a thing about her plan until he saw the tag on the hospital bassinet. ...
  • The 'Near War' And 'The Bedouin Way'

    No war, but near war," is the way one senior Jordanian official summarizes the strategy of the West and its allies in the gulf: brinkmanship meant to intimidate Saddam Hussein into unconditional withdrawal from Kuwait. Last week's talk of deploying perhaps 100,000 additional U.S. troops was one more way of turning up the heat on the Iraqi strongman. So, too, were CIA director William Webster's off-the-record but widely repeated remarks that the West is unlikely to get out of the impasse without a fight. Friends of Francois Mitterrand weighed in, telling reporters the French president thinks war is "imminent." ...
  • Multiple Choices

    On a bright October morning in the grungy tents of the Louvre's Cour Carree, hundreds of buyers and fashion writers slid to the edges of their chairs. In a depressed retail market, with the dollar at the lowest anyone could remember, they were waiting for a miracle: an exciting line of clothing that people would rush to buy. ...
  • No Kick From Campaigns

    Anyone who felt good about American politics after the 1988 presidential campaign probably also enjoys train wrecks, or maybe a day at the beach watching an oil slick wash ashore. The poverty of the process that pitted George Bush and Michael Dukakis against each other seems even more abject given the extraordinary events of the last two years. The man who would preside over the end of the cold war, the deployment of troops in the Middle East and the collapse of the domestic budget process was able to win by mostly-talking about flags, furloughs and the "L-word." His opponent wandered the country with the vague promise of "good jobs at good wages." Who's responsible for the disintegration of our campaigns? Three journalists with new books spread blame everywhere: inept candidates, rapacious consultants, smirking, cynical journalists, confused voters. ...
  • The Strongman In Stir

    It was already 10 o'clock at night, and with a group of lawyers and prison officials we stood in the chapel of Miami's Metropolitan Correctional Center. The choice of location wasn't ours: for security reasons the prisoner's cell is off-limits. We waited 20 minutes while the rest of the inmates were secured. And then suddenly there he was. flanked by two more warders as he walked in, wearing his four-star uniform and a nervous smile. "How are things?" someone asked in Spanish amid the handshakes. "Tranquilo," Manuel Antonio Noriega answered--everything's fine. ...
  • Queen Of The Spellbinders

    She'd be a good writer if she'd write about what she knows," one character in Anne Rice's new novel "The Witching Hour" (965 pages. Knopf. $22.95) says of another. "But she writes these morbid fantasies about an old violet-colored house in New Orleans and a ghost who lives there--all very high-pitched, and hardly what will sell." Pre-emptive irony, of course. Anne Rice knows horror novels are declasse and that the $5 million she got for her last two-book deal can't buy the cachet of a $5,000 piece of "serious" fiction. But she insists her novels are serious fiction. And although photographers tend to shoot her as Morticia, she talks and dresses like what she is: an intelligent bohemian woman who came of age in the early '60s. "I was writing in Berkeley, Calif.," says Rice, 49, "in a room full of pot smoke and beer cans. To me, the world was the paperback books I bought at Cody's on Telegraph Avenue--all Great Literature. I've never changed. But I am operating against a prejudice. I...