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  • An Abrupt Exodus From Albania

    Pressed against the guardrails, the ragged, sunken-eyed refugees cheered their escape from privation and repression. "Ciao Italia," they shouted from the upper decks as the ships steamed into the Adriatic harbor town of Brindisi. Reluctantly granted safe passage last week by Eastern Europe's last Stalinist state, they had swarmed aboard planes for Budapest, Warsaw and Prague. Trains carried them toward destinations in France and West Germany. Boats headed for Marseilles and the coast of Italy. The Brindisi-bound exodus alone ferried about 4,000 refugees. It was the final leg of their flight. After languishing for 12 long days behind foreign embassy walls in the capital of Tirana, thousands of dissident Albanians were free at last. ...
  • Fax Me To The Moon

    Back in the late 1970s the Air Force wanted a fax machine that could withstand subzero temperatures, monsoons and nuclear blasts. It took 11 years to develop; now the AF is getting 173 Litton fax machines that, by the estimation of Michigan Sen. Carl Levin, have cost $668,208 per unit. While the AF says the super faxes cost only $411,000 each, experts note that common $1,000 faxes now have nearly all the abilities of the special model.
  • Changing Dimes

    It's enough to drive a coin collector crazy. The Senate has passed a bill six times to update the current designs of the backs of U.S. coins. The changes would likely raise millions from coin collectors. But the legislation keeps getting hung up in the House. Last year, sources say, the bill stalled because Diane Wolf, a former member of the Commission of Fine Arts who has pushed hard for the changes, rubbed key congressmen the wrong way. The delays have created a new problem: a leading design idea was to commemorate the bicentennial of the U.S. Constitution. That was more than two years ago.
  • Picking Up The Pieces

    As an owlish young prophet in the '60s, Kevin Phillips scanned Middle America for Richard Nixon. Since then he has seen the GOP dump Nixon's Main Street Republicanism for Ronald Reagan's mink-coat kind, and Neil Bush tarnish George Bush's Episcopal Garden Club variety. Last month he published his dismay in "The Politics of Rich and Poor." Since then Jesse Jackson has asked him for two signed copies of the book. Tom Turnipseed, one of George Wallace's old populist operatives, has written him a fan letter. And the head of the Senate's Democratic campaign committee has invited him to a retreat with Democratic senators intent on learning how to pull up their socks. This has infuriated the GOP's neo-laissez-faire, Laffer-curve fat cats. "That's not what I am," he says. "And that's not what the Republican Party was 20 years ago." ...
  • A Frightening Aftermath

    Knocked down with brute force, a knife at her throat, a rape victim has every reason to believe she is about to die. Usually she survives, only to begin the torturous recovery from physical and psychological wounds. Now, however, a fatal new fear has exacerbated the aftermath of rape. "AIDS has made rape an even more frightening and traumatic experience," says Carolyn Holmes, a psychologist at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston. "There has always been a concern about venereal disease, but now your life is involved." ...
  • Dog Days Of Fashion

    The ancients thought dogs the animals closest to humans because they can feel shame. Wrong--at least for the Weimaraners in artist William Wegman's fashion spread in the August issue of Details. While their master's exhibition of photos, paintings and videotapes graces London's Institute of Contemporary Art this summer, they've been stuck stateside with coat-hanger duty. Posed while . . . er, wearing a variety of designer knitwear, the poor beasts look more dazed than discomfited. But maybe the last bark's theirs and they're really saying, "I wouldn't be caught dog in this sweater. "
  • A Crisis In The First Family

    The report, compiled during the White House transition, must surely rank as one of the more fascinating and poignant documents of the Bush presidency. Forty-four pages long, it is entitled, "All the Presidents' Children," and it is a compendium of the private and not-so-private problems of presidential offspring through the years. Among other findings, the paper concludes that the sons and daughters of American presidents have suffered from higher-than-average rates of alcoholism, divorce and accidental death--disturbing evidence of the stress that living in the shadow of history can cause. Neil Bush may recall one prescient passage. "The presidential child in business faces the pressure of enormous scrutiny," the report's author, White House staffer Douglas Wead, wrote. "Two things the media and the public won't allow? Success or failure. Keep the business mediocre, maintain a personal low profile, and you will be left alone." ...
  • For Adults Only

    Out of bounds: The Andover (Mass.) public library, for banishing eager-to-read children to a kiddie room and keeping them away from most books. Library director Nancy Jacobson thinks the kids make too much noise. If youngsters below the seventh grade want to browse for books beyond the "Horton Hears a Who" variety. she says, they must have an adult chaperone them--hardly the best way to encourage higher learning. But the kids are fighting back: one is circulating a petition among third to fifth graders demanding that children be allowed to browse with the big people and the Massachusetts Civil Liberties Union is considering a lawsuit.
  • Shoot-Out In Houston

    George Bush called last week's gathering in Houston the first economic summit of the post-cold-war period, "a celebration of victory over barbed wire concrete walls and discredited despotism." But the sense of common military purpose that had been achieved at a NATO summit one week earlier escaped the seven major industrial democracies at their annual economic gathering Houston was more a shoot-out than a peace parley. Each major power felt free to pursue its own interests no matter what the others thought. The frightening implication is that when--and if--the Soviet Union finally does disband its still mighty military, the last glue in the Western Alliance will dissolve and the West will fall into nakedly competing regional blocs--America, Europe and Asia. ...
  • Old Enemies, New Questions

    Medger Evers was only 37 when he died in 1963, but the hard-charging NAACP field secretary spent most of those years organizing voter-registration drives and economic boycotts, making numerous enemies among Mississippi's white segregationists. Someone settled scores with him on the driveway of his Jackson home shortly after midnight on June 12. As he stepped from his car, a rifle shot tore into his back and through his chest. An hour later, he was dead. For a time it looked like justice would be swift. Authorities found a rifle and sniper's scope in a honeysuckle thicket 150 feet from Evers's house. A near-perfect fingerprint quickly led investigators to Byron de la Beckwith, a fertilizer salesman and White Citizens Council organizer from nearby Greenwood. Yet two trials before all-white Hinds County juries ended in deadlocks. ...
  • The New Fuzzy Dice

    You mightn't have guessed, but Andrew Dice Clay, that leather-jacketed fount of squirt fantasies that defy not just good taste but human anatomy, wants to be understood. He has feelings and, as he says, when you're on top, people like to knock you. One day before critics began bleeping all over his new movie, "The Adventures of Ford Fairlane," the self-described "hottest comic in the world" issued a misty on-air apologia to Arsenio Hall. He's just a kid from Brooklyn who believed in himself, worked hard for 10 years to get where he is today, and anyone who doesn't like it can . . . keep his opinions to himself, or words to that effect. A couple of days later, he was back at it with Diane Sawyer on ABC's "Primetime Live," elucidating the difference between Andrew Dice Clay, the character, and Andrew Clay Silverstein, the real person. "If I was Dice to you right now . . . I'd be sitting here, like, 'So let me ask you something, honey. You live alone? You wearing panties?'That's what...
  • A Mean Strain Of Strep

    Brad Andrews thought nothing of it when he scraped his arm playing racquetball in 1986. "There was a little blood--I just put a Band-Aid on it," says the Boise, Idaho, attorney, now 34. A few days later Andrews felt flu-ish and his arm started to swell. By the time he drove to the emergency room, his fever was high. X-rays of his elbow revealed an infection. His fever kept climbing, his blood pressure plunged and he showed signs of toxic shock syndrome. An infectious-. disease specialist isolated a bacteria known as Group A streptococcus in Andrews's bloodstream. After a week, he left the hospital on high doses of penicillin--30 pounds lighter but lucky to be alive. ...
  • Cape Cod Mutiny

    It wasn't quite "Mutiny on the Bounty," but it was as close as we get these days. Last week Gary Feener, captain of the 73-foot scallop boat Barnacle Bill, radioed for help claiming his crew attacked him about 100 miles off Nantucket The sailors complained of bad food, bad pay, bad treatment; the captain claims he was threatened with a scallop knife. He and two loyalists managed to lock themselves in the pilot house while the swashhuckling scallopers cut the navigational and electrical wires and trashed the deck. But this highseas adventure didn't end with a keelhauling. Captain Feener was rescued by the Coast Guard and the crew was ferried to nearby Hyannis.
  • Jesse's 'Deep Throat'

    The State Department is wondering whether Sen. Jesse Helms has developed a "Deep Throat" within the U.S. intelligence community who is leaking the senator information on the Strategic Arms Reduction Talks (START). NEWSWEEK has learned that Helms, in a detailed, 25-page questionnaire and "Dear Jim" cover letter to Secretary of State James Baker, has revealed the most intimate knowledge of Baker's negotiating tactics and of U.S. intelligence about Soviet strategic modernization plans. One State Department source called the information "appallingly well informed." In the material sent to State, Helms says he knows of "an important Soviet defector" who "recently" provided U.S. officials with new technical information about the Soviet Backfire bomber that will spark renewed controversy at the START negotiations. ...
  • Of Beauty And Mooseburgers

    Summer is rerun hell. You know it, and the networks know you'll sit for it. Of course, that was before dwindling audience shares and proliferating viewing choices turned the network programming game into a blood sport. Nowadays, any TV outlet that closes shop for the summer risks discovering that its clientele forgot to come back in the fall. The upshot: a summer wave of what the industry calls "original product." " Some of these series are more original than others and a few will make you long for preruns--but then no one ever looked to the tube for a perfect wave. ...
  • The Voices Of America

    If such an upbeat fellow as Alan Lomax has nightmares, they must be like this scene from Thomas Pynchon's 1966 novel, "The Crying of Lot 49." An acid head named Mucho Maas listens to Muzak and imagines--prophetically, we now know--that "they could dispense with live musicians if they wanted. Put together all the right overtones at the right power levels so it'd come out like a violin." He goes on to fantasize that since each human voice is just a combination of frequencies, they could all be electronically broken down and reassembled. "Then you'd have this big, God, maybe a couple hundred million chorus saying 'rich, chocolaty goodness' together, and it would all be the same voice." ...
  • Zina's Breakthrough

    Tennis has moved out of the country club in recent | years, but it remains a sport heavily tilted in favor of players who grew up with money. Zina Garrison, a hard-luck 26-year-old who learned to play on a Houston playground, struck a democratic blow last week with a shocker upset of top-ranked Steffi Graf in the Wimbledon semifinals, 6-3, 3-6, 6-4. After a hard-fought first game, she succumbed to the unsinkable Martina Navratilova in the finals, 64, 6-1, giving the 33 year-old veteran a record ninth Wimbledon singles title. But even while falling short, Garrison left the tennis world with a memorable taste of grit, advancing further than any black woman since Althea Gibson in 1958. ...
  • Now, The Task Is 'Economic Containment'

    During the cold war, containment meant keeping Soviet expansionism in check. Today, containment is taking on a new geopolitical meaning: preventing the economic might of Germany and Japan from so dominating world exports that it tears apart the global trading system. The gravity of the issue--"the issue of the 1990s," as Robert Lawrence of The Brookings Institution calls it--means that once uneventful economic summits, such as this week's meeting in Houston, will replace NATO summits as the most important international get-togethers of the year. Economics is no longer the sideshow; it's center stage. "The danger is that we replace the cold war with a trade war," says Robert Hormats of Goldman Sachs International, who himself helped organize half a dozen summits. "In a demilitarized era, economic forces are king." ...
  • Don't Worry, America

    Three years ago, Yale professor Paul Kennedy became America's favorite prophet of doom. His book "The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers" popped up on coffee tables throughout the land; he found himself before congressional committees and television talk shows, expounding the book's thesis of "imperial overstretch." The United States, he suggested, was falling victim to the same process that had undone other great powers: as their influence grew, so did their military commitments; these obligations strained their economies; nations with lighter military burdens sprinted ahead of them. This notion was gobbled up by a nation then obsessed with the Japanese economic "threat. " ...
  • She Stoops To Conquer

    Imelda Marcos was acquitted last week of stealing $200 million from the Philippine treasury and investing it in the United States. Jurors were confused about why she was tried here for allegedly stealing there. The "world-class shopper" was so relieved she walked down the aisle of St. Patrick's Cathedral on her knees, a Philippine custom. The gesture was spiritual and practical: she thanked God, and saved her shoe leather.
  • Searching For The Beef

    He was an unlikely choice for chairman of the world's second largest advertising group. When Robert Louis-Dreyfus took the helm of Saatchi & Saatchi Company PLC six months ago, most New York ad executives didn't even recognize his name, let alone pronounce it properly. Frenchmen knew him better as an heir to one of Europe's great grain-trading fortunes than as a global advertising mogul. Today, charged with the task of breathing new life into the troubled company, LouisDreyfus still maintains a low profile. He is banking on a disciplined, no-nonsense form of leadership to revive the once mighty ad giant. "I am not a tap dancer," he says. "What Saatchi needs most now is peace. " ...
  • Protest

    Newsweek has learned that Secretary of State James Baker this week will formally protest a Soviet plan to place an SS-4 intermediate-range missile in Cuba. The Soviets say it won't be operational and it's going into a museum. But U.S. officials see the plan as a worrisome reminder of the 1962 Cuban missile crisis. "This just reopens old wounds," says an administration source. Under the INF treaty, the Soviets must destroy, their intermediate-range missiles. Washington agreed to permit Moscow to keep an inoperative SS-20 in a museum at a missile-training base in the Soviet Union. But the new plan for housing an SS-4, even one that's been disabled, in Cuba is too close to home.
  • Read The Lobbyists' Lips: Tax The Other Guy

    It was former senator Rusell Long who contained the un-official theme song Capitol Hill lobbyist: "Don't tax you, don't tax me--tax the fellow behind that tree." Last week the lobbyist were moving their lips as fast as they could to endorse that sentiment. No sooner had President Bush backed away from his read my-lips pledge than details of new tax proposals began leaking out. And--surprise, surprise--lobbyist for everything from brewers to stockbrokers began scrambling to protect their flanks. ...
  • 'I Give To People Who Are Suffering'

    the value of timing. In 1984, with the presidential election less than two months away, the outspoken advocate for the homeless went on a hunger strike in Washington, D.C. He wanted to force the U.S. government to donate an abandoned federal building to the homeless. Two days before the election, Ronald Reagan gave in--and agreed to allocate $5 million to create a shelter that now houses some 1,200 residents. Emaciated from his 51-day fast, Snyder emerged a national figure, and his gamble made homelessness a national issue. But in recent months Snyder, 46, worried that public sympathy was slipping away. Then fellow activist Carol Fennelly, 40, called off their wedding plans. Last week, leaving a note saying that he couldn't handle "breaking up," Snyder hanged himself in his shelter bedroom. ...
  • Immaterial Affections

    Hollywood's definition of a perfect couple is a man and a woman, one of I whom is dead. How else to explain the preponderance of ghostly love stories haunting the screen? Now, just six months after Richard Dreyfuss returned from heaven to voyeuristically snoop on his mate in "Always," here's the ghostly Patrick Swayze mooning over his grieving girlfriend, Demi Moore, in Ghost. Swayze, a corporate banker, has just been killed by a New York mugger, but his spirit is still hanging around his Tribeca loft when he I discovers Moore's life is in danger. How can he save her when he's immaterial? Enter Whoopi Goldberg as Sister Oda Mae Brown, a quack spiritual adviser. Imagine her surprise, after years of faking communication with the dead, when this white boy starts talking to her from beyond the grave, and won't leave her in peace until she gets involved in saving Demi--and helping Patrick track down the man who murdered him. ...
  • The Start Of A Cd Backlash?

    Remember the CD Revolution? When sophisticated music lovers discovered the crisp sound of the digital discs, the predictions went, they would snap them up despite their hefty price. Then, as demand boomed, CD prices would tumble and the record-buying masses would join in. Pretty soon the LP would go the way of the Victrola--but with a better-sounding and longer-lasting alternative, who would miss it? ...
  • Women Under Assault

    The three teenage defendants just stared impassively, but over in the jury box, one of the 12 panelists grimaced and another shook his head. As the "Central Park jogger" trial continued in a Manhattan courtroom last week, key witnesses described the condition of the young woman discovered beaten, raped and left for dead on an isolated footpath. His voice breaking, police officer Joseph Walsh identified a blood-caked garment as the shirt he found tied around the victim's neck, twirling it into a long knotted rope from the witness stand. "She kept kicking out," said Walsh--as though she were still fighting off assailants. Later, a surgeon told the jurors that the jogger had lost three quarters of her blood on that night in April 1989. "She received a blow so severe that . . . her eyeball had exploded back through the rear of its socket," said Dr. Robert Kurtz. "The normal hills and valleys that appear on everyone's brain were flattened out, obliterated." ...
  • Waiting For The Fall

    The rebels of Liberia's National Patriotic Front were determined to capture or kill President Samuel K. Doe last week, even if they had to put a city of 500,000 people under siege. The rebels cut off Monrovia's water and electricity and severed communications to the outside world. Hungry citizens foraged for leaves and roots. One man with bullet wounds bled for four hours as government soldiers ignored his pleas and turned to looting and stealing cars instead. On one morning alone, some 17 corpses were discovered around the capital. As rebel artillery boomed, Doe hid in the executive mansion where his predecessor was killed 10 years ago. ...
  • Day Care: Bridging The Generation Gap

    The Stride Rite Corp. Has long been a pioneer in family-oriented employee benefits. In 1971 the Cambridge, Mass., shoe manufacturer opened one of the nations's first corporate day-care centers. The facility now has a capacity enrollment of 55 kids, 15 months to 6 years, and this yaer welcomed some new participants: seven elderly people. Stride Rite's Intergenerational Day Care Center is believed to be the first mixed-age on-site center in the country. ...
  • A New Role For Nato

    As the cold war fades, Western leaders seek to reassure the Soviets and preserve the alliance ...
  • Ick-Shtick: The Diceman Cometh

    This will be the only review of Andrew Dice Clay's The Adventures of Ford Fairlane that mentions T. S. Eliot. What's the connection between the foul-mouthed comic and the great poet? Both have been accused of misogyny; there are lines in Eliot's original version of "The Waste Land" about women's minds and bodies that sound like highbrow versions of the Diceman's riffs. So what? So, at the highest and lowest cultural levels, the fear and awe of women have driven men into extremes of eloquence and indecency. In "Ford Fairlane" Clay's profane machismo is played for what it is, a parody of the insecure male whose strutting supremacism is just an act. ...
  • Lights Out

    People often make the best out of a catastrophe. Take last year's San Francisco earthquake. The Seton Medical Center in Daly City, Calif., is reporting a 25 percent increase in births compared to the same time last year. A hospital spokeswoman says the quake "occurred exactly nine months ago and power was out for several hours. We can only surmise that the two must be connected."
  • The Inside Guerrilla

    For a time, no one took Dick Armey seriously. Elected in 1984, the Texas congressman was just another conservative ranting on C-Span against every spending program. He was a little kooky to boot, sleeping on a cot in his office to save money. But he tired of being the class clown and decided a better way to beat the system was to join it. Learning the intricacies of pork-barrel politics, he brokered an agreement in 1988 that will result in the closing of 86 outmoded military bases. That victory emboldened Armey to take on another sacred cow the House Agriculture Committee. This summer he is pushing a bill that would bar federal subsidies to farmers whose net income is more than $100,000. While relatively few in number (33,000 out of 2.2 million), fat-cat farmers received 60 percent of crop-support money in 1988. ...
  • 1990: The Bloodiest Year Yet?

    The United States, already far and away the murder capital of the civilized world, could be headed for its bloodiest year ever. Though nationwide statistics are not available yet, many of the country's cities are showing sharp increases in killings for the first months of 1990 compared to a year ago. In Boston, murders have jumped 56 percent. New York City is up 30 percent; Philadelphia, 28 percent. Chicago, greater Miami and Oakland have seen sharp increases. Los Angeles could top the 1,000 homicide mark this year--the city has had 450 murders so far. If the trend continues, U.S. homicides in 1990 could reach the record 23,040 killings in 1980. That would be 9.2 murders per 100,000, more than seven times the rate in England or Japan. ...
  • When The Heart Goes, The Mind Follows

    800,000 Americans had heart attacks. For those fortunate enough to survive, life will never be quite the same. And now doctors have discerned a new set of dangers. According to a study released this week by researchers at New York's Albert Einstein College of Medicine, women who suffer heart attacks may increase their risk of developing Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia. ...
  • Buzzwords

    The nest time you're on an airline flight you might want to know how that friendly flight attendant talks when you're out of earshot: Those wonderful mini-sandwiches served on some airlines. Also used to describe the small, round filet mignons that are a first-class staple.Attendant who takes tickets when you board.Training school for attendants. Also known as masterbase.Over-stuffed garment bags.Peanuts, so called because pilots eat so many.Plastic trash bags in which some travelers carry their belongings.Cheap charter flights.A lazy flight attendant who hides out in the galley. Older flight attendants. Also known as senior mammas or gold wingers.
  • Arming Up

    Who says peace is breaking out everywhere? Not anyone who's taken a look at Third World arms purchases. Here's a look at who's buying up the most artillery and where they're getting it: COUNTRY ARMS MAIN IMPORTED SUPPLIER (IN BILLIONS) Saudi Arabia $4.9 U.K. Afghanistan $3.8 U.S.S.R India $3.3 U.S.S.R Iraq $1.9 U.S.S.R Iran $1.3 China Vietnam $1.3 U.S.S.R
  • Can Hormones Stop The Ciock?

    The American quest for the fountain of youth is never ending, and thanks to a study in last week's New England Journal of Medicine, old folks and Eli Lilly & Co. have a hot new prospect: human growth hormone. By injecting a synthetic version of the hormone into a handful of healthy, aging men for six months, researchers managed to reverse the process by which lean body mass gives way to fat. Indeed, the six-month regimen seemed to undo 10 to 20 years of skin, bone and muscle deterioration, prompting speculation that prolonged youth would one day be an option for anyone who could afford the treatment (it would cost about $14,000 a year at current prices). But don't hold your breath. As one expert puts it, "To think this is going to be an anti-aging panacea is a mistake." ...
  • One City, Two Summits

    When most people think of Houston, they're likely to conjure up all-day barbecues, not economic-summit meetings. Yet that image will change this week--as Houston hosts not one summit, but two. There's the grand one for the great powers, the one for which Houston has spent nearly $10 million and planted thousands of begonias. Then there's another l gathering, made up largely of leftist academics and activists, that has taken on the pun-prone acronym TOES: The Other Economic Summit. This second get-together--a three-day affair kicked off on Friday--includes a range of seminars on such subjects as environmental decay and economic self-reliance for Third World nations. The object: to serve as a counterpoint to concerns of the industrialized nations. Says participant Max Sisulu, son of African National Congress leader Walter Sisulu and a recent returnee to South Africa after 27 years in exile, "It is a summit for the ordinary people who want to have a say in the running of their lives." ...
  • The New Teacher Corps

    The more than 500 young men and women who filed into a University of Southern California auditorium last month were not there to collect their diplomas. In fact, most of them had graduated from college weeks before. This time, as they made their way through the 112-degree heat, they had something grander in mind. "Above and beyond everything," said Dan Brooks, a 21-year-old graduate of St. Olaf College in Minnesota, "I want to teach. Put me wherever. I'll teach whatever." ...
  • A Primer On Buying Abroad

    By the 21st century, Americans will be investing abroad as comfortably as they do at home. Some of you are there already. Last year $13.7 billion poured into foreign stocks, up a huge 813 percent from 1988. For the timid, here are four strong reasons for exporting maybe 20 or 30 percent of your money: ...
  • Risky Business

    Call it D-Day in the Andes, Apocalypse of the Drug Lords, the ultimate bust. Hundreds of troops from three nations swoop down on scores of targets--hidden airfields, jungle factories, heavily guarded haciendas--to cripple, in one swift blow, the cocaine cartels of South America. This is not a scene from a Tom Clancy novel but a plan now teeing worked up at United States Southern Command, home of Gen. Maxwell Thurman, the hero of the Panama invasion. In a "secure room" called the Counternarcotics Operation Center at the Quarry Heights headquarters of Southcom in Panama City, 30 officers are preparing "targetfolders" aimed at severing the links that tie Latin America's narco-traffickers. Thurman's plan, according to briefing documents obtained by NEWSWEEK, calls for a "simultaneous (regional) attack to impact the cartel's entire support structure." Translated from Pentagonese, that means a hemispheric drug raid. According to a senior Southcom officer, the intelligence necessary to...
  • Do American Farmers Need New Handouts?

    think of farmers, they imagine a salt-of-the-earth family barely warding off foreclosure. In reality farmers are wealthier and more likely to be Republican than the image would suggest--and they keep a close eye on Washington. Every five years Congress renews the farm bill, setting subsidy levels for the half decade to come. This time, the timing couldn't be worse: agriculture, the country's biggest industry, has largely recovered from the recession and credit crunch of the early 1980s. With the federal deficit growing, is this any time for a thriving group to demand a $10 billion-a-year handout? ...
  • Salon Advice

    Boston's beauty parlors are giving new meaning to the adage "only your hairdresser knows for sure." Because women talk freely to their hairdressers, the Boston Women's AIDS Information Project has trained more than 50 stylists from a dozen inner-city salons to educate their clients about the disease. Participating salons dispense educational material and condoms as well as anti-AIDS advice. About 10 percent of Americans with AIDS are women; almost three quarters of them are black or Hispanic.
  • Quick Change

    Blake Edwards, king of the gender-mandering genre, has done it again. The director who cast Julie Andrews as a woman pretending to be a man in "Victor/Victoria" has now cast Ellen Barkin as a man who awakens to find he's a woman in "Switch." Confusing Imagine how costar JoBeth Williams feels when she kills her ex-lover only to have him rebound as Barkin.
  • Of Double Standards And Dinner

    As he went into exile, Fang Lizhi pledged to study quietly at Cambridge University and to refrain from "opposing" China. But the most prominent survivor of the Tiananmen Square crackdown made it clear last week that he will keep pushing for human-rights reforms in China--even if it means criticizing the policy that freed him from 386 days of confinement in the U.S. Embassy in Beijing. During an NBC News interview in London, the astrophysicist accused the United States of holding the Soviet Union to a tougher standard on human rights than it does China. Asked about President Bush's controversial decision last year to send a top-level delegation to Beijing, Fang said: "I don't think that's a good idea." He told how he and his wife, Li Shuxian, learned to cook in the U.S. Embassy microwave, christening their refuge "high-tech Chinese restaurant. " Then he laughingly invited himself to meet Bush: "He still owes dinner for us. " ...
  • Bruce Willis: Where Am I?

    What did they spend that reported $62 million on in making "Die Hard 2"? Apparently not on getting the details right. Waiting for his wife's flight to arrive at Washington's Dulles Airport, Bruce Willis in an early scene rushes to a public phone to call her. For several long seconds the camera lingers on Willis and the phone company logo: Pacific Bell--which serves only California. How did the amusing goof happen? Studio chief Joe Roth, "Die Hard 2" producer Joel Silver and director Renny Harlin won't say. "The official word is: nobody wants to talk about it," says a Fox spokesman. Also, would the producers please stop making it appear in ads that the movie is called "Die Harder"? Next time pick one title and stick with it.
  • A Deadly Ball Of Fire

    I saw a big ball of fire," said truck driver Mike Zugel. "It looked to me like a rocket just took off." Zugel's fireball was a deadly explosion at ARCO's petrochemical plant in Channelview, Texas, 20 miles outside of Houston, that leveled an area the size of a city block and burned for more than four hours. A 900,000-gallon treatment tank containing water and chemical waste blew up during a routine maintenance procedure. Officials at the plant, which produces a gasoline additive and chemicals to make plastics, said the source of the disaster was a mystery. "There were hydrocarbons that were burned," said plant manager Earl McCaleb at a press conference. Officials say no leakage of dangerous materials occurred, and no evacuations were ordered. But the disaster's casualty toll was clear enough: at final count, five were injured and 17 dead, 11 of them contract workers hired to perform the maintenance work. ...
  • Hang Up The Help-Wanted Sign

    After the workers at Tokyo's Yamazaki Mazak Corp. go home each night, the small machine-tool manufacturer doesn't close--it runs a night shift staffed by robots. In sushi kitchens across town, metal-fingered chefs turn out delicate pieces of nigiri, while tougher automatons paint, plaster and install windowpanes in high-rise construction projects. Japan counts one robot for every 704 of its citizens. (America's ratio is one tenth that.) Necessity is the mother of this heavy-metal work force. There simply are not enough Japanese to do Japan's work. ...
  • Welcome To The Imperial City

    Planning a trip this summer? Look no further than Vacationland U.S.A., New York City, the town where you can have experiences much more exotic than visiting the Statue of Liberty or the Met. If you visit the Times Square area, you should be aware of ...
  • Death In The Holy City

    It was Islam's most important holiday, the Feast of Sacrifice. Outside Mecca, many of the 2 million pilgrims who had completed the monthlong hajj were rushing to perform a final ritual, along a route that passes through an 1,800-foot-long tunnel. Then seven pilgrims fell from an overhead walkway at the tunnel entrance. In the confusion, 50,000 people jammed into a space designed for 1,000, and a power failure shut off the tunnel's air conditioning, witnesses said. "I was pushed and fell over about 20 corpses," a weeping Lebanese pilgrim said later. "Others were still pushing and walking on top of me." The toll: 1,426 pilgrims dead. ...
  • Trading Piaces

    Like many daughters of aging parents, Sandy Berman didn't recognize at first how far her mother and father had slipped. "You are so used to your parents being mentally competent that you don't realize what you're dealing with for a long time," says the Northridge, Calif., schoolteacher, 47. Her parents had been living with trash piling up in their home for almost a year when Berman finally convinced them to move closer. But the move only hastened their decline. Berman's father, 83, became forgetful and overdosed on his insulin. Her mother, 74, couldn't find her way from the bedroom to the bathroom. For months, Berman called every morning before going to work, and stopped by every afternoon. "I was going to make everything right, and better and perfect," she says. "But everything I did turned into mush." ...
  • Grass Roots Gold Rush

    Three hundred miles is a long way to go to buy books, but Meg Ross doesn't mind the drive from Baton Rouge, La., to Oxford, Miss. That's because she knows she can find what she wants at Oxford's Square Books, a roomy, two-story shop that in only 11 years has earned a regional reputation among book lovers. On a recent trip, Ross bought Fernand Braudel's "The Structures of Everyday Life" and I. F. Stone's "The Hidden History of the Korean War," titles she couldn't find in the chain bookstores back home. Wandering the store's wide aisles smelling the fresh-brewed coffee from the store's cafe, Ross praises the hospitable feel of the place. "I enjoy hanging around with the books," she says, "not just rushing in to buy one thing and leaving." ...
  • Clean Scenes Of Marriage

    It was a marriage made in box-office heaven. Woody Allen, the prototype of the self-effacing schlemiel, and Bette Midler, the quintessential loud-mouthed broad, play a couple celebrating their 16th wedding anniversary in "Scenes From A Mall," which just wrapped up shooting in Stamford, Conn. This time, however, the two stars stray from their traditional shtik, says Paul Mazursky, who wrote and directed the film. Midler plays a psychologist who just wrote a best-selling book; Allen is a lawyer. The title is a play on Ingmar Bergman's "Scenes from a Marriage"--which ought to tickle Bergman fan Allen.
  • An American Original

    If Morgan Russell had been in the movies instead of modern art, he would have had one of those special-achievement Oscars named after him. After all, he was one of America's first two abstract painters, along with Stanton Macdonald-Wright. They roamed around avant-garde Paris on the eve of World War I, turning out full-spectrum color symphonies while Picasso was still figuring out how to put the front and back of a violin in the same painting. "Morgan Russell: A Retrospective," now at Chicago's Terra Museum, is an overdue tribute to one of the forgotten point men of modernism. (The Montclair Art Museum in New Jersey organized the exhibition, which also travels to Buffalo.) ...