You may have heard of the former Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals, Judith Kaye. But do you know the man who replaced her, Jonathan Lippman? Do you know he never practiced as an attorney, and barely served as a judge? So how’d he get appointed to this exalted position? Connections, baby — chief among them that of Assembly fixer Sheldon Silver. Wayne Barrett has the story. Read it and weep.
You probably also know about Kirsten Gillibrand, and that for a New York Senator, she’s pretty tight with the NRA. But you may not know that she was also an attorney for Big Tobacco. She repped Philip Morris, and in that capacity toured laboratories that proved the harmful effects of smoking — and then kept on representing them. And, Tom Robbins reports, she continues to take their money to this day.
Graffiti may be New York’s last great indigenous art form, and Martha Cooper is its official photographer. From Keith Haring to C.Damage, she’s recorded the masters’ fades, scrawls and tags for posterity. She has a new book, and Camille Dodero talks to her about it.
What’s with Cat Power and covers? She’s got good songs, why does she prefer to plunder and narcotize 50 years of pop? Rob Harvilla caught her act at the Apollo, and has some ideas.
Michael Musto attends a pool party at the Grace Hotel, then towels off for more traditional entertainments — The Third Story with Kathleen Turner, “Dance Think Punk!” at Capitale, Will Ferrell’s opening night party, The College Humor Show, the Writers’ Guild Awards, etc.
J. Hoberman on Gomorrah (“Mean Streets cubed”) and Two Lovers (“Touching in its absurdity”); Scott Foundas on The International (“As generic as its title”), Nicolas Rapold on the MOMA Documentary Festival, and Melissa Anderson on Confessions of a Shopaholic (“teeters from one pratfall and catfight to the next”). Also: Annie Fischer obits Vincent Galvin Jr., 1983-2008.
Michael Feingold on Charles Busch’s The Third Story (“hearty peasant cuisine”) and Will Ferrell’s You’re Welcome America (“comes within waving distance of what you might call satire”); Rob Weinert-Kendt interviews Liz Swados on her upcoming Kaspar Hauser musical (“I hate musical theater”); Alexis Soloski takes in the puppet play Disfamer (“trudges along at a pre-industrial drag”) and a revival of Flyovers (“it’s a honey trap. Run”).
All this art’s makin’ us hungry. Rob Sietsema ventures to Richmond Hill for Warung Kario (“items nearly unreconstructed from their Javanese originals”), and Sarah DiGregorio to Ninth Avenue for Co. (“we stare at our $40 pizza”).
Dan Savage counsels a reluctant swinger (“You are an idiot”) and an orgasm denialist concerned with prostate cancer (“Two orgasm-denial questions in two weeks — it’s officially a trend!”). And Ask a Mexican “Why do gabachos think we know everything about plants?” and “Why does Mexican food always make me shit?”
There’s also your Free Will horoscope, letters to the editor (including Riker’s inmates’ and an employee’s take on Graham Rayman‘s expose), and an endless feast of choice Voice accessible from the front page.