Monday, February 21, 2005

Paris Hilton and George Bush: The internet makes for a transparent life

George Bush and Paris Hilton are regretting the day Al Gore invented the internet, I'm sure. Seems that the President sort'a admitted to blowing a little boo and Paris' cellphone data is all over the net. We'll start with Paris.

CNN reports the latest Paris Hilton news (like you can't get enough, I'm sure):
Paris Hilton has a problem keeping her personal life personal. The slinky socialite's latest saga involves highly sensitive details including phone numbers and personal notes posted for all to see on the Internet in what could be a case of mobile device hacking.

A spokesman for T-Mobile confirmed earlier reports that information from Paris Hilton's star-studded address book has been posted online.

"Her information is on the Internet," said Bryan Zidar. "We don't know if it was hacked or if someone got a hold of her password."

According to Zidar, Hilton used the Sidekick II, a multi-purposed personal electronic device that uses an online server to store at least some information, including phone numbers.

While Zidar said it is possible for the information on that device to be hacked from the company's server remotely, the company is still investigating the specifics of Hilton's case.

Zidar said that since Sunday night a number of sites had posted Hilton's personal contacts, but the sites kept changing as the Secret Service, which Zidar said investigates computer crimes, shuts them down.

"As soon as one comes up the secret service is all over it," he said.
Of course, I don't really care about the address book. I want the pics. So I found them posted here and here. They might still be there... if the Feds haven't gone in with a hammer and taken out the servers. What I don't understand about the pics is this: why are there so many pictures of Paris? If it's her camera phone, wouldn't the pics be of other people? Who takes pics of themselves? Yeh, okay, who films themself having sex? Why'd I even ask?

Says Engadget about Paris:
Dude, could someone buy Paris Hilton an OGO or a Treo already? She had that Sidekick hacked once, and whether or not it’s happened a second time, someone’s finally pulled the data and posted it all up online. They managed to dig up dirty camphone shots (right alongside shots of her holding a baby and hanging out with kids—oh, Paris), her notebook, and her address book, which has had such high-brow, mover-and-shaker entries as: Christina Aguilera, Devo Aoki, Fred Durst, Jermaine Dupri, Vicki Gotti, Stephen King, David Lachappelle, Avril Lavigne, Lindsay Lohan, Bijou Phillips, Ashlee Simpson, Twiggy, Usher, and Vin Diesel. (We have a feeling she might not be getting some of those digits again once they’ve changed.) Anyone care to guess which ones she hasn’t done a tape with?
Try the Brits for another take on Paris.

And, now, moving on to the President. Seems he might'a smoked a little weed. As the New York Times reported yesterday:
As George W. Bush was first moving onto the national political stage, he often turned for advice to an old friend who secretly taped some of their private conversations, creating a rare record of the future president as a politician and a personality.

In the last several weeks, that friend, Doug Wead, an author and former aide to Mr. Bush's father, disclosed the tapes' existence to a reporter and played about a dozen of them.

Variously earnest, confident or prickly in those conversations, Mr. Bush weighs the political risks and benefits of his religious faith, discusses campaign strategy and comments on rivals. John McCain "will wear thin," he predicted. John Ashcroft, he confided, would be a "very good Supreme Court pick" or a "fabulous" vice president. And in exchanges about his handling of questions from the news media about his past, Mr. Bush appears to have acknowledged trying marijuana....

Mr. Bush, who has acknowledged a drinking problem years ago, told Mr. Wead on the tapes that he could withstand scrutiny of his past. He said it involved nothing more than "just, you know, wild behavior." He worried, though, that allegations of cocaine use would surface in the campaign, and he blamed his opponents for stirring rumors. "If nobody shows up, there's no story," he told Mr. Wead, "and if somebody shows up, it is going to be made up." But when Mr. Wead said that Mr. Bush had in the past publicly denied using cocaine, Mr. Bush replied, "I haven't denied anything."

He refused to answer reporters' questions about his past behavior, he said, even though it might cost him the election. Defending his approach, Mr. Bush said: "I wouldn't answer the marijuana questions. You know why? Because I don't want some little kid doing what I tried."

He mocked Vice President Al Gore for acknowledging marijuana use. "Baby boomers have got to grow up and say, yeah, I may have done drugs, but instead of admitting it, say to kids, don't do them," he said.
Says CNN:
An author who secretly recorded his conversations with then-Gov. George W. Bush told CNN Monday that the tapes were a historical record that he never wanted made public....

In a segment of the tapes made available to CNN by ABC News, the president appears to admit to trying marijuana.

Bush says he "wouldn't answer the marijuana question ... 'cause I don't want some little kid doing what I tried."

"But you gotta understand, I want to be president, I want to lead. I want to set -- Do you want your little kid to say, 'Hey daddy, President Bush tried marijuana, I think I will?' " he said.

In a segment of the tapes played on ABC's "Good Morning America," Bush says the same holds true for questions about cocaine use, which have dogged him since the 2000 election.

"The cocaine thing, let me tell you my strategy on that," Bush said on the tape. "Rather than saying no ... I think it's time for someone to draw the line and look people in the eye and say, you know, 'I'm not going to participate in ugly rumors about me and blame my opponent,' and hold the line. Stand up for a system that will not allow this kind of crap to go on."
I'm thinking the President wishes the tapes had burned in fire.

Got to thank Al Gore for inventing the internet, however, and making Paris and George a little more transparent, a little more understandable, a little more - er - human.

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