Overnight Briefing & General Reality Check - Mar 20, 2012
March 20, 2012
How corrupt is your state?
A new report out yesterday graded all 50 states on accountability and corruption, and the results aren't good.
No state was awarded an A, and only five got a B: New Jersey, Connecticut, Washington, California and Nebraska. Nineteen had C's, and eighteen had D's, including Texas, New York and Utah.
Eight failed: Michigan, North Dakota, South Carolina, Maine, Virginia, Wyoming, South Dakota and Georgia.
So who's at the top of the class? New Jersey is the least corrupt state, with a B+ grade.
New Jersey, along with many of the other top-scoring states, actually benefited from previous high-profile corruption: Political corruption scandals can lead to tough ethics laws. Legislators react to a corruption scandal by enacting reform as a form of political cover, says the report, and both New Jersey and Louisiana (which also did relatively well in the report --ranking 15th-- despite a reputation for political scandal) both have some of the toughest ethics laws in the country.
Oh, and despite the reputation of Chicago, the state of Illinois ranked 10th among least corrupt states.
1. New Jersey
49. South Dakota
Going Geek-dot-com /Caught in the Web:
We've all seen those Facebook profiles of people who have friends lists that number in the hundreds, even thousands. But Weinstein Company Marketing SVP BLADIMIAR NORMAN is calling BS on all of it. He says 80 percent of conversations on social media are between the same people, usually limited to a group of four or five individuals talking to each other. (Kaye)
No winner in Friday night's drawing for the Mega Millions Lottery. That means tonight's drawing is valued at $241 million ($170 million cash value). Mega Millions is played in 42 states and Washington DC. Chances of winning the big prize are 1 in 175.7 million.
Like you really care:
Want to buy the luxurious pad where "Carrie Bradshaw" and "Mr. Big" were supposed to live happily ever after? RadarOnline.com reports the Manhattan townhouse featured on "Sex and The City" can be yours for a budget-friendly 9.65-million-dollars. The property has quite a bit of history --it was built in 1866, just two families have resided in the joint, it boasts five bedrooms, six fireplaces, herringbone floors, crown moldings and 4,100-square-feet of room. (Lee)
Macy's is counting on men wanting to smell like DONALD TRUMP. It has the exclusive on the Trumpster's new fragrance, Success by Trump. In a release announcing the launch, Trump says the scent of juniper, geranium and tonka leaves "exudes sophistication and confidence."
The ad campaign that begins in May features Miss Universe 2010, XIMENA NAVARRETE. (Kaye)
NICKI MINAJ is the new face of Pepsi. Billboard.com says she signed a seven-figure deal to shill for the soft drink company. That will include a TV commercial that will run all over the world for Pepsi's new all-natural soda, which will be called Pop. Look for the ad next month. (Marino)
Broadcast, cable and video news:
DONALD TRUMP has already spoken out on the cancellation of hated adversary ROSIE O'DONNELL's show by the OPRAH WINFREY network. The announcement came Friday that Rosie's final episode would be taped today (Tuesday).
Upon hearing the announcement, The Donald tweeted yesterday, "Rosie O'Donnell has failed again. Her ratings were abysmal and Oprah cancelled her on Friday night. When will media executives learn that Rosie just hasn't got it."
The pair have been at each other's throats for the last five years, stemming from Rosie's blast at Trump for not tossing out Miss USA, TARA CONNER, with the bathwater when she was accused of drug use.
But that wasn't all. Later yesterday, on "Fox and Friends," he continued his tirade, saying "Rosie fails at everything.... Some moron will come and hire her again to do something else and that will fail. At some point, let her rest. Let her go away."
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