Liz Smith: The Old Dirty Trickster Helping Donald Trump

Scheming Republican strategist Roger Stone

And more from our Gossip Girl: The Civil War — has it ever really ended? … the Lindsay/Gotti merry-go-round

“IF THE Clintons have not found anything on Barack Obama — trust me, they are the masters at finding any dirt!” This from Mike Huckabee to the birthers.

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OUR REMARKS here yesterday on Donald Trump seem to have struck a nerve – especially that NBC should suspend Mr. Trump’s “Celebrity Apprentice” show until he decides whether or not he is sincerely running for president.”

My spies tell me that the voice behind Trump’s birther conversion is none other than our old Nixon dirty trickster – the GOP’s Roger Stone. He is the same man who exposed Eliot Spitzer’s call girl problem, and he was thick as thieves with the late Roy Cohn. How well I remember Roger’s parties and machinations during the Ronald Reagan years. That all seems downright innocent these days.

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LAST WEEK I read a headline in the London Daily Telegraph about a simple injection being given to patients up to 12 hours after a heart attack or a stroke. It claims that this antibody reduces more than 60% of the physical scarring of the heart muscle or damage to brain cells.

I have looked in vain for a U.S. followup to this amazing headline — “New Heart Attack Jab Even Better Than Statins. Breakthrough Hailed As Biggest Ever in Fighting Britain’s Two Major Killers.” I searched through the New York Times and other papers for this report. (Eventually, I just Googled “heart attack injection” and found some American press on the story.)

The British story went on to lavish praise on Professor Wilhelm Schwaeble, who carried out the research at University of Leicester. Human trials are to begin within two years.

Since heart attacks and strokes are greatly feared in this country by all of us, I can’t believe this story hasn’t had a wider credence or examination.

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SO PROUD of our friend Whoopi Goldberg. We, at the New York Landmarks Conservancy, made her a “Living Landmark” back when Whoopi was on the receiving end of attacks from George W. Bush supporters for something she didn’t even say.

I am happy to report that Newsweek is now reporting that she is more popular with adult females than any of her “ View” co-hosts — “and even more liked than Oprah.”

And when you see Whoopi’s brand new production of the musical “Sister Act” on Broadway, you will like her even more. Insiders are saying that now, the one to take the Tony away from Sutton Foster of “Anything Goes” is “Sister Act’s” leading lady Patina Miller.

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OVER LAST weekend, because the young student I was with was studying Ken Burns’ great documentary “The Civil War,” I had a pleasant crash course in re-running through America’s most traumatic moments, save for the original Revolution of 1776.

This great classic reminded me all over again of the clash of North and South, the clash of liberal and conservative ideologies, and the way a rising hatred

of “the other side” of any question can deteriorate into something tragic.

Seeing again the use of the Revolution’s “Don’t Tread On Me” flag, the enthusiastic sentiments of the South against the North, of crazed abolitionists against slave owners and white people unwilling to give up their privileged slaving sins, made my heart ache. And what about a President so hated it makes one’s teeth clinch, whether for or against. During the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln was just as despised as Barak Obama is today. Just as despised as Bush before Obama.

The irony of the Burns documentary’s opening in 1861 with Southerners roaring to go to a glorified war, bragging about “killing me a Yankee” and what happens only weeks later when the limbs pile up outside hospital tents and men left in the gore and mud no longer think their uniforms are so smart and their lives so useful.

Lincoln always said the war was not over slavery, but whether a state had a right to secede from the union. Slavery was simply the financial giant apparatus that started it all. We see parallels today: People against their government, ranting about state’s rights, ranting about seceding from the union if they don’t get their way, using differences to exaggerate their patriotism.

I find the nation divided — and it is frightening to look back on history when division was effective enough to split common sense. The aftermath is something we have never recovered from, not even today. You could order the entire Ken Burns “The Civil War” series and you would really get value from it. And the list of heroic actors and creators who made it is astonishing and very encouraging.

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WE END on what is (to many of you) an absurd note. Lindsay Lohan. First she was “negotiating” for a role in the new big screen movie about the Gotti family, which will star John Travolta. Then she turned up, rather uninvited, at a Manhattan press conference touting the film — but everybody seemed pleased to see her. Then director Nick Cassavetes dropped out of the film, perhaps because he didn’t cotton to working with LL. Then producer Nick Fiore announced that Lindsay’s “people” had made it too difficult — she was out. Late last week Fiore reversed himself and said not only was she definitely in (playing Junior Gotti’s wife Kim) but that it was she who smoothed everything over and made it happen. Like a real pro.

Lindsay hasn’t starred on the big screen in five years. She deserves a break, but she also needs to behave herself. There are third acts in American life, F. Scott Fitzgerald notwithstanding. But you have to work for it.

That’s the latest, but by Monday it might be a whole different story. Hell, it might be a different story an hour from now!

16 comments so far.

  1. avatar Sharon Belko says:

    Liz – Thanks so much for the history lesson.  This one hit me squarely in the solar plexis, living in AZ as I do, where bigotry, racism and immigration issues are everyday headlines – not to mention gun control issues where it seems everyone has the joyous right to carry one whenever and wherever!

    Reminded of the quote that “those who do not remember history are doomed to repeat it” (or someting to that effect).  Rational and logical voices would definitely be welcomed about now.

  2. avatar Sharon Belko says:

    “something” – typing in the dark!

  3. avatar crystalclear says:

    Liz, so much to respond to and so little time!   You are right about the article on Donald Trump hitting a nerve.   As an Independent I am fascinated at the anger from the left.  Fascinated!   Mr. Trump called Charles Krauthammer yesterday and they had a nice chat.   Mr. Krauthammer said the article he wrote about him would be out today and was not so nice.   Mr. Krauthammer had the gracious manners to tell The Donald that it would be released today.   Civil isn’t it?   We can all learn from this.

    Thank you for sharing the heart attack/stroke injection study.   I would like to see more information on this and am wondering why we haven’t here in the states.

    I don’t follow Lindsay Lohan or Whoopi Goldberg however I wish Whoopi enormous success with “Sister Act” on broadway. 

  4. avatar Baby Snooks says:

    I could make a comment about Roger Stone but “been there, done that” and so I won’t. Suffice it to say “boys will be boys.” Particularly Roy Cohn’s boys.
    I already pointed out that if Barack Obama wasn’t born in Honolulu the Clintons would have made sure everyone knew it.  Rumor still is some want her to run in 2012. Despite her coyness about it. If she does run, well, I wouldn’t be surpsied if a birth certificate from Kenya pops up. 

    I suspect 2012 is going to exceed the predictions of the Mayans. At least in terms of the coming political apocalypse in this country. Not going to be pretty as they say.

    • avatar Count Snarkula says:

      Oh the tales I could tell on Roger Stone from my stint in DC. But, as has Baby Snooks, I have chosen the high road. For now.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        Certain names of late cause my head to spin and my eyes to bulge and suddenly I am transformed into Megan in The Exorcist. The Bushes. The Clintons. The Obamas. But so many others.The Kennedys. The Kerrys. Just about any Democrat from Texas.

        But mention Roy Cohn, or one of his boys, and, well, that gets the poor priest tossed out the window and down the stairs.

  5. avatar Maggie W says:

    I enjoyed the PBS recent Civil War series(rerun)  The many historians were fantastic, including Shelby Foote.  Before watching it, I thought, ” What new information could there possibly be?”  It was intriguing and beautifully presented.  It chronicled what it was like to be alive in another time, a time when the future of the country was in doubt and its fields and roads and churchyards were battlefields.  

    One would think those days are long gone.  But the remnants are alive and well.  My morning paper tells me that the Confederate flag is still being flown in Easton, GA, and causing quite a flap.  In Mississippi, 56% of those polled do not support interracial marriage.  The fires in Texas prompted one woman to say, ” Maybe some of those ‘chili peppers’ will go back to Mexico.”   And we have a black president. ( Okay, half).  He is the first President to have his origin of birth doubted.  Some people  have their Fruit of the Looms in a big twist over this.  Interesting but also amusing but not surprising.  There will always be those with a poorly hidden agenda. 

  6. avatar Laura Ward says:

    If Nick Cassavetes dropped out becauase of Lindsay Lohan’s shennanigan’s, my respect goes to him. The rest of the people should follow his lead that certain behavior is unexcusable and certain “stars” should be grateful for what they have…or rather…had.

    • avatar Baby Snooks says:

      “I see a level of brazenness with, `Let me see what I can get away with here.’”

      That’s the judge addressing Lindsay Lohan before she let her get away with something else. The judge is pretty brazen herself. And probably needs to attend some “rehab meetings” herself so she can better understand the term “enabling.”

      Lindsay Lohan treats the criminal justice system as a joke because it is a joke. Liz can promote her all she wants. She is still trash. And along with the rest of the trash in Hollywood needs to be put out on the curb for pickup. 

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        And these parts she wants to play. First Linda Lovelace. Then Victoria Gotti. And the Gottis.  I had enough of the Gottis with the “reality tv show” thank you very much.  The Real Housewives of Old Westbury? Scary thought.  The mafia has always been here. Why do we need to “normalize” it as we do? All over the country some of these “families” are now in the society pages. Having discovered their “philanthropic side.” Instead of hiring attorneys now they’re hiring publicists. What on earth has happened to this country?

      • avatar Laura Ward says:

        You always write so well and describe the situation exactly. It’s time to give another young person their opportunity. Lindsay Lohan certainly had more than enough opportunities. No one has that much talent. I only hope she doesn’t end up like Diana Barrymore (of the past) or Anna Nicole Smith (of the present).

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I’m afraid Lindsay Lohan is already one of Hollywood’s great tragedies and like so many others a victim of “the entourage” which in her case includes her “loving” parents who appear to continue to use her as a “weapon” in their ongoing war with each other.  Some of the death certificates in Hollywood should list “the entourage” as the cause of death.  Michael Jackson’s certainly should have.

        Larry Fortensky has given an interview with The Daily Mail and was more polite about “the entourage” than Richard Burton was.  Silently they sat while a tabloid falsely accused him of taking advantage of her while she was dying. Knowing he never had. Perhaps knowing she probably would not know about it. Perhaps not knowing she had left him a bequest in her will. Part of the unpleasantness I spoke of when she died. More to come I suspect. Dreadful people. All of them.

      • avatar Laura Ward says:

        Yes, the leeches…

  7. avatar Richard Bassett says:

    I think it is the sign of a good director to be up to challenges…and directing Lohan may be just that. His reason may have nothing to do with Lohan, and in every movie deal there are details to smooth out. We’ll only know as production begins. No sense in guessing because we really just do not know. John Travolta will be great as the mob boss.

  8. avatar annee says:

    Liz, re your comments about the “heartattack” shot: You have to get to the hospital within 3 hrs. And it has been around for awhile. Perhaps this British Dr. has added something but I know
    of 3 people who were lucky. Two of them are celebrities and I won’t mention their names,
    let them do that. I first heard about it years ago and the people I’mentioned were all
    patients at UCLA. Check it out.

    • avatar Baby Snooks says:

      You are probably thinking what’s called the “clot busters” which can prove fatal if they are given too early. They can only be given once in a 72 hour period. So someone who has had a mild heart attack or stroke is not a candiates. But sometimes someone isn’t thinking because of who the patient is. Happened to a friend of mine. Who then had a massive stroke less than 48 hours later.  Which is when they have given her the drug. But couldn’t. I suspect the doctor who made the deicision no longer is allowed to make decisions. If he’s still a doctor. Something tells me he’s not.  He was the resident on call for her doctor. Who never returned the page I was told. Taught me to learn to say “no” to doctors although I forgot when I showed up for a heart stress test and was told the drug “sometimes cause a small heart attack.” Whatever I had, they still don’t say, it was not small at all.

      The “clot buster” will not repair damage. It simply breaks up a clot that has broken loose and clogged an artery.  This new drug apparently will. Which apparently is why it’s in clinical trials.