December 28th, 2007

Chris Keeley

You are a MIRACLE!!!!

 You are a MIRACLE!!!!
Congratulations!!!! What a special Day for a SPECIAL person. I love you and I LOVE that you are ALIVE, HEALTHY, and INSPIRED!!! What a miracle cutie.

KISSES, HAPPINESS , LOVES
 


Chris Keeley

OxyContin wound up in the high schools and street corners of rural America where curious teenagers c

OxyContin wound up in the high schools and street corners of rural America where curious teenagers crushed the pill, defeating the time-release formula, and ended up addicts, or in some cases, dead.

December 28, 2007
The Long Run

Toby Talbot/Associated Press

OxyContin’s 1996 to 2000 sales averaged $1.5 billion.

Under Attack, Drug Maker Turned to Giuliani for Help

In western Virginia, far from the limelight, United States Attorney John L. Brownlee found himself on the telephone last year with a political and legal superstar, Rudolph W. Giuliani.

For years, Mr. Brownlee and his small team had been building a case that the maker of the painkiller OxyContin had misled the public when it claimed the drug was less prone to abuse than competing narcotics. The drug was believed to be a factor in hundreds of deaths involving its abuse.

Mr. Giuliani, celebrated for his stewardship of New York City after 9/11, soon told the prosecutors they were wrong.

In 2002, the drug maker, Purdue Pharma of Stamford, Conn., hired Mr. Giuliani and his consulting firm, Giuliani Partners, to help stem the controversy about OxyContin. Among Mr. Giuliani’s missions was the job of convincing public officials that they could trust Purdue because they could trust him.

So it was no small success when, after the call, Mr. Brownlee did what many people might have done when confronted with such celebrity: He went out and bought a copy of Mr. Giuliani’s book, “Leadership.”

“I wanted to be prepared for my meetings with him,” Mr. Brownlee said in a recent interview.

Over the past few weeks, Mr. Giuliani’s consulting business has received increasing scrutiny, at times forcing him to defend his business as he campaigns for the Republican presidential nomination.

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Chris Keeley

the DC documentary project

Greetings -

We're taking a moment this holiday season to thank you for your help and participation in the making of the R.Rock Films Washington, D.C. documentary The Legend of Cool "Disco" Dan: The True Story of an Urban Phantom and the Murder Capital that Raised Him.  

To date, we've completed interviews with over forty musicians, politicians, journalists, authors, professors, graffiti writers, officers, activists, former gang members and drug dealers, television personalities, and other DC fixtures. A small selection of our interviewees includes Marion Barry, Chuck Brown, former Washington Post reporters Paul Hendrickson, Patrice Gaines, and Alona Wartofsky; members of go-go bands Trouble Funk, Rare Essence, E.U., Pleasure, Ayre Rayde, Redds and the Boys, as well as representatives from DC fixtures like clothing store Universal Madness and restaurant Ben's Chili Bowl.  We couldn't be more excited about how things have been going and the momentum that the project has gathered thanks to all of your involvement.  Interviews with some of our most eagerly anticipated (as well as some of the most well-known) participants are yet to come.

We'd like to once again reach out to you all in the hopes that you might have a forgotten piece of video footage, period photo, or any other piece of memorabilia that might be appropriate to our story.  We need all we can find!  Also - are we missing anyone that we should interview?  We're all ears.

Again, thank you all.  We wish you a happy new year and much success in the future.

Caleb Neelon, Roger Gastman, and Joseph Pattisal.

--
Caleb Neelon
Producer
R. Rock Films
617-435-2265
Chris Keeley

The Spirit Moved Them

Sarah McLean meditates in the house she and her husband, Martin Birrittella, built in Sedona, Ariz., on a site selected for its spiritual qualities.



SERENITY Pritam Singh, right, and the tea house at his retreat in Vermont. 


December 28, 2007

The Spirit Moved Them

WHEN he was a sophomore at Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville, Fla., Martin Birrittella experienced something that changed how he would spend his free time for the rest of his life — and possibly longer.

“I was reading Swami Muktananda’s autobiography,” he said, “and suddenly I felt like I was being electrocuted by a million volts of energy. It was like getting a heroin injection of love right in the heart.” That extraordinary experience, known as kundalini, or higher consciousness, by Hindus, left him feeling as if he wanted to “meditate for the rest of my life.”

Seventeen years later, after he cashed out from taking two companies public, that possibility became a reality.

Four years ago, Mr. Birrittella and his wife, Sarah McLean, a yoga and meditation instructor, built their dream retreat in Sedona, 120 miles north of their home in Scottsdale, Ariz. Situated on a promontory at the end of an isolated road that twists into the desert away from Sedona’s sprawl, the house, which cost some $2 million to build, is a low-slung olive-green building centered on a templelike meditation room and overlooking the orange-colored buttes of the Munds Mountain Wilderness.

“When the Indians came up here and saw the rocks and the faces in them, they thought this was the center of the world,” said Mr. Birrittella one recent afternoon as the setting sun lent a crimson glare to the buttes framed in the meditation room’s enormous windows.

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Chris Keeley

Expenses for the New York trips often ran more than $1,000 a night. On one occasion last year he sta

Expenses for the New York trips often ran more than $1,000 a night. On one occasion last year he stayed in a $559-a-night room at the W Hotel, and on another he billed the Smithsonian for a $286 meal with filmmaker and photographer Gwendolen Cates during which most of the tab went for alcoholic beverages, including a $75 bottle of Italian wine, a 1997 Barbaresco. West said Cates was an extraordinary filmmaker who premiered a movie about a Native American ballet dancer at the museum.

Indian Museum Director Spent Lavishly on Travel

By James V. Grimaldi and Jacqueline Trescott
Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, December 28, 2007; A01

 

The founding director of the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian spent more than $250,000 in institution funds over the past four years on first-class transportation and plush lodging in hotels around the world, including more than a dozen trips to Paris.

In that time, W. Richard West Jr. was away from Washington traveling for 576 days on trips that included speaking engagements, fundraising and work for other nonprofit groups, according to a review of travel vouchers for West's trips obtained by The Washington Post.

West's travel often took him far from American Indian culture: Auckland and Wellington, New Zealand; Athens; Bali, Indonesia; Sydney and Brisbane; London; Singapore; Florence, Rome and Venice; Paris; Gothenburg, Sweden; Seville, Spain; Seoul; Vienna; and Zagreb, Croatia.

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Chris Keeley

the portraits that made her famous — powerfully unsettling photographs of dwarfs, transvestites and

the portraits that made her famous — powerfully unsettling photographs of dwarfs, transvestites and everyday people — the Met filled librarylike rooms with her photographic equipment, pages from her diaries, books from her home and studio and family pictures.



December 18, 2007

A Big Gift for the Met: The Arbus Archives

Two years ago gallerygoers had a chance to discover the personal side of Diane Arbus in a retrospective at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In addition to the portraits that made her famous — powerfully unsettling photographs of dwarfs, transvestites and everyday people — the Met filled librarylike rooms with her photographic equipment, pages from her diaries, books from her home and studio and family pictures.

Now the photographer’s estate has presented this intimate chronicle of Arbus’s life — her complete archives — to the Met as a gift, along with hundreds of early and unique photographs; negatives and contact prints of 7,500 rolls of film; and hundreds of glassine print sleeves that she personally annotated before her death by suicide in 1971.

At the same time, the museum has bought 20 of Arbus’s most important photographs, including “Russian Midget Friends in a Living Room on 100th Street, N.Y.C.” from 1963 and “Woman with a Veil on Fifth Avenue, N.Y.C.” from 1968, from the Fraenkel Gallery in San Francisco, which represents her estate. While the Met declined to say what it paid for the photographs, experts say they are worth at least $5 million. The gift of the archive is impossible to value, experts said.

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Chris Keeley

What's the hurry? -- Ha'aretz for December 27th

This article in the Israeli daily *_Ha'aretz_*  gives excellent insights
into the strained pyrotechnics between Condoleeza Rice and Israel's
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.    Hopefully Rice's attitude which this
article synthesizes will ultimately prevail, but it is obviously a long
and tricky road.  This is a very worthwhile read  [which prints out to 4
pages].

 http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/objects/pages/PrintArticleEn.jhtml?itemNo=939202

QUOTED EXCERPT:    In private conversations - and as she said in
Annapolis - Rice tends to compare the Israeli occupation in the
territories to the racial segregation that used to be the norm in the
American South.
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