Today’s Observer story on the Judith Regan lawsuit offers a good peek into the former publishing magnate’s thought process as she tries to take down HarperCollins, Jane Friedman, Rupert Murdoch, and even Rudy Giuliani. The salmon paper reveals that at the start of all of this, the wannabe If I Did It publisher was offered $6.5 million to settle, but she turned it down. They even talk to Judith herself! Her quotes are actually sort of tepid and unrelated to the case, which makes sense, as she’s probably banned by her lawyers from talking about it. But there are a lot of quotes by people who are “familiar” with her thinking and with the lawsuit. So let’s play a game! Which of the below quotes from unnamed “sources” are actually from Regan herself, dementedly speaking in the third person?
• “The men don’t want a woman who can outshine them,” one source with knowledge of Ms. Regan’s thinking told the Observer. “They want women who can look up to them and bat their eyelashes. But honestly? She was more interesting than they were. She had a better life. She had more creativity. Men want to be on top.”
• “The problems with Jane Friedman started from the very beginning,” said a source close to Ms. Regan who is familiar with the case. “When you have an independent operator in the sense that Judith was, unless you’re a very secure executive, that can be very threatening to you. Most people who worked with Judith at the time, both authors she worked with and editors, witnessed a tremendous amount of hostility and harassment from the top.”
• “There were higher-ups at News Corp. who were aware of what was going on, who were afraid of its impact on Giuliani, who told her to keep her mouth shut and threatened her if she wouldn’t,” said the source close to Regan. “It was made clear that if she didn’t play ball, she would pay a huge, huge price for it.”
• “There was nothing wrong with the O.J. book,” said one source with knowledge of Ms. Regan’s thinking. “That was also spin. Ted Bundy also wrote a hypothetical confession! She wasn’t allowed to talk about any of this. She was gagged during the whole O.J. thing. Ted Bundy confessed to these two reporters and he did it as a hypothetical and it was a number one best-selling book in the 1980’s.”
• “Look at how they spun the complaint,” the source continued. “There’s Giuliani in Iowa saying, ‘Oh, it’s just a gossip story.’ And what did the New York Post do? They made it a Page Six item. Do you actually believe that wasn’t coordinated? I can tell you absolutely, positively, they got on the same page and they decided how to spin it. They decided it would be dismissed as a gossip item.”
• “She’ll be vindicated,” said the source with knowledge of her thinking. “The truth will come out.”
Now that we have “knowledge of her thinking,” we sure hope it doesn’t make us start sounding like her, too.
If She Did It [NYO]