May 30, 2011

Down By the Old Rumor Mill Stream, Part Whatever

Devon Keester’s Hollywood Lowdown
“The dark, sweaty juncture where politics and show biz meet!”

[Note: Since Keester’s sources are shady and unreliable and usually found near a vinyl-covered barstool, his ramblings should be taken with a several grains of salt from the rim of his next margarita.]

Biden Over and Out: Obama will not be running with Biden as his Veep in 2012. Word is, Joe Biden is feeling every one of his 68 years and not anxious to enter another national campaign after finally facing the realization he’ll never be president. That’s okey-doke with Obama, as it gives him the opening to offer the VP slot to Hillary Clinton, further underwriting his re-election. Now that the sharp edges of the 2008 campaign have softened, and BHO and Sec-of-State Hill have a good working relationship, he would welcome her as a running mate, and the youthful 63-year-old Clinton would have a springboard for a presidential run in 2016. The only question that remains is if Hillary will sign on. She may not have the stomach for another national campaign herself, preferring, maybe, the governorship of a state to be named later instead. If not Clinton, Obama would like to make history, and notch his appeal to women voters, by naming someone of the female gender. Next on the list if Clinton doesn’t bite is supposedly Jennifer Granholm, the former governor of Michigan, although US Rep. Loretta Sanchez of California, Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri and Sen. Patty Murray of Washington state are said to be strong possibilities as well.

The Story Behind the Story: Yup, Newt Gingrich had a suspicious interest-free revolving charge account at Tiffany’s for two years that racked up $500 grand in billings, but that’s not all. Ignoring for the moment that regular customers pay 21 percent interest on their charges, Newtie’s current wife Callista, when she was a lobbyist, had ties to the silver mining industry from which Tiffany’s fabricates its overpriced doodads, and Gingrich himself, while in the House, interceded to get the jewelry company a very sweet deal on use of public lands for mining. The Newtster may soon have more to worry about than his doomed SNL-skit presidential campaign — the feds are taking notice of his involvement with the Tiff, and whether he actually paid down that half-mil himself or if some or all of it was written off by the grateful company as a lobbying fee. Whichever way it goes, Newt is going to end up in a courtroom somewhere, trying to stay out of the hoosegow, and probably still running for president in his fevered little brain. No wonder Newtie was reluctant to answer any questions about his $500K shopping spree at Tiffany’s — it’s looking like a quid pro quo bribe.

The Story Behind the Story, Part Deux: Sure, it’s been all over the papers like a dog who got into the prune juice that pouty ex-Alaskan Ice Princess Sarah Palin is moving the whole-damn Wasillabilly brood to a luxurious $1.7 million 5-BR, 6.5-bath manse with a concrete swimmin’ hole in Scottsdale, AZ, near enough to America’s wackiest sheriff, Joe Arpaio, to be in the Red Zone if any of his pink-clad prisoners escape. But let’s just get this out of the way: the erstwhile Mama Grizzly is not running for president — her ‘tragic bus’ tour of the Nor’east is just to revive national media interest in her fast-plummeting ‘brand,’ whatever her crackpot brand is these days. How could this be when all the big-time pundits are sure she’s running? Well, she hasn’t been kicked off Fox News, and she’s got a $1 mil-a-year contract there that runs through 2013. But she also allegedly has speaking contracts to read her palm to unfortunate victims through 2014; if she reneges on those contracts — since she can’t legally take the money if she’s a candidate — she’ll have to pay a stiff penalty. That would cost her a bundle out of pocket she can’t afford. Get your laughs now — by 2015 she’ll be off Fox and consigned to introducing second-rate Branson, MO, acts with, “Hi there, remember me? I’m Sarah Palin!”

– Ailes Out at Fox? Speaking of Fox Noose, head-major-domo-top-enchilada, first-among-inferiors Generalissimo Roger Ailes’ contract with king pinsetter Rupert Murdoch is up in 2013. Surely Uncle Rupe will renew it, you say. Not so fast: Murdoch’s recent wife Wendi likes Obama and loathes Ailes, and Rupe’s wives have considerable influence on him; plus, the whole fam damily who will be inheriting the business when Murdoch retires or ascends to Media Jesusland likewise has about as much affection for the former Nixon PR flack as they do for a case of the clap. Word is, James Murdoch, current deputy operating office at Fox parent News Corp, particularly has it in for Ailes after what Rog did to brother Lachlan, supposedly pushing James’ older sibling to the point of a nervous breakdown. The elder Murdoch is also said to not be pleased at the direction Ailes has dragged the GOP-propaganda cable channel; of course, he favors its conservative slant, but the hiring of palpable nitwits like Boom-Boom Palin and Man-On-Dog Ricky Santorum didn’t sit well with News Corps’ Bigga Boss. Look for a shake-up at Fox after the next election, unless the GOP wins Reagan-’84 big.

One More Fox Tale: A deep, deep rumor says the Keith Olbermann ousting at MSNBC was part of a deal with Fox News’ Roger Ailes. Seems Keith, the former ratings king at MSNBC, was getting under Roger’s skin with his gloves-off jibes at Fox personalities, as well as cutting into Fox’s cable dominance as his ‘Countdown’ show numbers steadily increased. In a top secret meeting with Comcast, then poised to buy up MSNBC parent NBC-Universal, Ailes and unnamed execs from Comcast and NBC allegedly struck a deal to lessen the attacks on Fox and dump Olbermann once the Comcast buy-out was finalized; in return, Fox would go easier on NBC and provide some other goodies. Part of the bargain was that MSNBC would get rid of its top rater and Fox would reciprocate. So Ailes agreed to jettison Fox ratings leader Glenn Beck in return for Olbermann’s exit. Roger got the best of the deal — he wanted to give loose-cannon Beck the heave-ho anyway while MSNBC is now struggling in Keith’s old primetime slot, and Olbermann is fixing to cut down those ‘Lean Forward’ numbers even further when he resurrects ‘Countdown’ June 20th on Al Gore’s Current TV network at his old 8e/7c berth.

He Won’t Be Baack: A big dime is about to drop (but not in the form of a ‘bag’) on former Kali-forn-yuh guff’nor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Seems the ex-bodybuilder and purported actor had more than one out-of-wedlock bambino while married to Kennedy-kin Maria Shriver — mayhap as many as 6 or 7 — and all of their mamas want more money or they are calling the media. Add to that the news that the California AG is about to prosecute the Teutonic Musclehead for using state troopers to deliver comely young ‘club’ females 18-to-25 to his Governator living quarters at the Hyatt hotel in Sacramento, a clear misuse of state funds. It’s been reported Schwarzy planned to resume his ‘achting’ career post-politics — fat chance, since the word is the major studios now think he’s not ‘bankable’ at the box office anymore. (Perhaps he can nab the independent-film roles Casper Van Dien turns down, at Van Dien pay, natch.) Oh, and one more thing: all the years of stress on his bones and muscles from over-exercising and steroid use have taken their toll — the 63-year-old Ah-nuld allegedly now has the physical mobility of a man 20 years older and can only function normally by taking prescription painkillers.

© 2011 RS Janes.

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