The problem is that cinema, as I define it and as something that inspired me, is under assault by the studios and, from what I can tell, with the full support of the audience. The reasons for this, in my opinion, are more economic than philosophical, but when you add an ample amount of fear and lack of vision and a lack of leadership you’ve got a trajectory that is pretty difficult to reverse. - "Retired" director Steven Soderbergh speaks to the San Francisco International Film Festival about the state of cinema - (summary, full audio at bottom of page 2)
"The executive's home today is likely to be unpretentious and relatively small--perhaps seven rooms and two and a half baths. (Servants are hard to come by and many a vice president's wife gets along with part-time help. So many have done so for so long, in fact, that they no longer complain much about it.)" [more inside]
Toyota executives are currently testifying before Congress about the safety issues that have led to the recall of millions of vehicles. They insist that "We are confident that no problems exist with the electronic throttle control system in our vehicles." Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) says "I would not consider... of value" their report in support of this claim.
Bus tours of the houses of AIG executives, who are mostly not home or hiding behind security. [more inside]
CEO of Russia's largest oil company in jail The guy sounds like a crook to be sure; but its an interesting contrast to the US. When was the last time in this country someone with limitless financial resources was thrown in jail? Is Key Lay in jail? How about Bernie Ebbers? (Worldcom getting Iraq contracts is of course another story) Jeff Skilling? With all the talk of crony-capitalism anymore its easy to get desensitized. But to get a reality check on how to treat toplevel white-collar crime from Russia of all places is sobering.
...a $17,100 traveling toilet box; a $15,000 dog umbrella stand; a $6,300 sewing basket; a $6,000 shower curtain; $5,960 for two sets of sheets; a $2,900 set of coat hangers; a $2,200 gilt metal wastebasket; a $1,650 notebook; and a $445 pincushion. Yes, it's more insane corporate greed: Tyco Details Lavish Lives of Executives (NYT link, 'free' regis. req'd)
American movie, recording and software executives could be prohibited from entering Australia or extradited to face criminal charges if a copyright protection bill before the US Congress passes into law.