YOUR DAILY WEEKLY READER: Obama's South African speech; Grayson's financial woes; Goodman's great; Morgan may be in trouble. UP IN SMOKE!



OBAMA DOES HIS BEST OBAMA WHILE PUBLICLY EULOGIZING NELSON MANDELA THIS MORNING (TRANSCRIPT INCLUDED): Given the sweep of his life, the scope of his accomplishments, the adoration that he so rightly earned, it’s tempting I think to remember Nelson Mandela as an icon, smiling and serene, detached from the tawdry affairs of lesser men. But Madiba himself strongly resisted such a lifeless portrait. Instead, Madiba insisted on sharing with us his doubts and his fears; his miscalculations along with his victories. “I am not a saint,” he said, “unless you think of a saint as a sinner who keeps on trying.” (via Washington Post)


OR SHIT), YOU HAVE TO EXPECT THE HORNS. JESUS, HIGH STAKES: U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson of Florida lost $18 million in a scheme that cheated him and about 120 other investors out of more than $35 million, according to court papers. The Virginia man who ran the scheme, William Dean Chapman, was sentenced Friday in federal court to 12 years in prison. Prosecutors say Chapman used the money to fund a lavish lifestyle including a Lamborghini, a Ferrari and a $3 million home. (via Associated Press) 


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JOHN GOODMAN IS JUST AS GREAT A GUY AS YOU WOULD IMAGINE, THEN: “It’s a funny old game, isn’t it?” he said out of the blue. “What is, sir?” “Acting,” he replied. “Showbizzzzz.” In his gentlemanly way, he made the z sound like the hiss of a branding iron. But he has no taste for the life of the pampered in Hollywood—or even, it might seem in bleak moments, for acting (though he’s made some 70 films). Perhaps his midwestern roots conspire against any self-importance. (via Vanity Fair)

JOHN MORGAN, ON THE OTHER HAND, IS THE KIND OF GUY WHO SEEMS TO LIKE TO “KICK HIMSELF,” ESPECIALLY IF HE BOTCHED THE MEDICAL MARIJUANA CAMPAIGN: Morgan said he is now kicking himself for suspending a paid petition gathering campaign for a month or so in the fall. Though volunteers collect some petitions, paid workers are the backbone of most Florida amendment campaigns. The campaign held off payments for a while, hoping that the Florida Supreme Court would decide quickly whether the ballot language meets constitutional muster. Instead, the court did not hear oral arguments until last week and has until April 1 to rule. Meanwhile, the campaign lost valuable momentum, Morgan said. "If I don't get it on the ballot and look back, I am going to blame myself for suspending it when I did.'' (via Tampa Bay Times)


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