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Alberto Gonzales

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Condoleezza Rice and Martin Scorsese Go Way Back, Didn't You Know?

FINANCE • Stephen Schwarzman, Lloyd Blankfein, and David Rubenstein got down with Bush, Condi, and friends (including Martin Scorsese?!) at this year's Kennedy Center Honors. [NYP] • Barron Hilton decided to donate almost his entire $2.3 billion fortune to the family foundation, including the proceeds from the recent sale of Hilton Hotels and Harrah's casinos. Does this mean we'll have to stop calling Paris an heiress? [NYT] • If private equity is the smart money on Wall Street, then why have Blackstone's shareholders lost so big? The Times gives the easy answer: "What Wall Street is about is smart guys thinking about ways to make money from dumb ones." Good work, Steve Schwarzman! [NYT]

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Howard Stern Is Quietly Gay-Loving

MEDIA • Howard Stern, good for the gays? A longtime lesbian listener calls Stern "one of the most pro-gay media personalities in the country." [Gay.com] • Murdoch finally gets his giant puffy hands on the Journal today at 10 a.m. The only question is just how much of the Bancroft family will try to show their noble intentions, however laughably inept, by registering a protest vote against the deal. [WSJ] • A great new/old debate: Should Democrats go on Fox News? [Mixed Media/Portfolio, NYO]

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Thinking Big

It Happened this Week
Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s request to lay a wreath at ground zero was the unlikeliest wish in a week of ambitious schemes. Hillary Clinton took a second swing at universal health care, laying out a $110 billion program. Rudy Giuliani crossed the pond to London to rub shoulders with Margaret Thatcher, Tony Blair, and Gordon Brown, then suggested that Israel join nato. Dan Rather sued CBS for $70 million.

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Starrett-Crossed

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• Clipper Equity's ingenious PR notwithstanding, the would-be Starrett City buyer was thwarted again. On Saturday, the state's Housing Commissioner rejected the firm's second bid for the complex, concerned with the group's poor track record in the area. [TheStreet.com] • A blaze in a Bronx apartment building injured 53 people by AM New York's count (the Post has the number at 41), including 14 firefighters. The three-alarm fire began on the first floor and quickly spread up and out through hallways. [amNY, NYP] • Barack Obama (who evidently can't just come to a city; he either "swings through" or "invades" it) is back in New York for more fund-raising. He'll hang at a couple of good addresses before stopping by the Letterman show. Obama's previous New York City take is estimated at $3 million. [NYDN] • Bush knew. About Bernie Kerik's past, that is, when NYC's then-top cop was nominated to head Homeland Security. Thus, the doomed pick could have been a purely political gesture. Oh, and Alberto Gonzales had a hand in it, too. [NYP] • And East Hampton becomes a two-newspaper town: The Press, an import from one town over, is taking on the 122-year-old local institution the Star (as New York reported last month). Get ready for war. [NYT]

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Mistakes Made, Responsibility Taken, Jobs Kept

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It used to be that if you wanted to find the most slavish trend followers in this country, all you had to do was look to lower Manhattan, or parts of Brooklyn, or maybe Los Angeles. (Ugg boots in summer, anyone?) But now it seems that Washington, D.C. — Republican Washington, D.C., in particular — can go toe-to-toe on the fashion front. Have its denizens shed their navy suits and loafers? Of course not. Rather, they're all following the new vogue for "responsibility" — you know, where you "take responsibility" for something and leave it at that. No detention. No docked pay. No resignation. Just take responsibility and walk away.

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