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Editor, The Konformist
Newsweek Poll: Campaign 2004
Saturday January 24, 2003
Kerry Leads Dems With 30 Percent; Edwards Follows at 13 Percent; Dean
Slips, Even With Clark at 12 Percent
52 Percent of Voters Don't Want to See Bush Re-Elected (44% Do), 37
Percent Strongly Want to See Him Re-Elected, 47 Percent Strongly Do
But a Large Majority (78%) Says That it is Very Likely (40%) or
Somewhat Likely (38%) That he Will Get a Second Term
NEW YORK, Jan. 24 /PRNewswire/ -- Senator John Kerry has taken the
lead nationally among Democrats and Democratic-leaning voters over
Vermont Gov. Howard Dean in the race for the Democratic nomination,
according to the latest Newsweek Poll. Kerry leads the field with 30
percent, followed by Sen. John Edwards with 13 percent. Howard Dean
falls to 12 percent from 24 percent in the last Newsweek Poll two
weeks ago, and is even with General Wesley Clark, also at 12 percent.
Kerry also leads the pack of Democratic contenders among registered
voters as the candidate who would have a better chance of beating
President George W. Bush if the election were held today. A Kerry-
Bush match-up would have Kerry up by 49 percent to Bush's 46 percent.
A Clark and Bush match-up would be a close race, with Bush at 48
percent and Clark at 47 percent. Bush would have an edge over Edwards
(49% to 46%). Yet, with a plus or minus margin of error, these match-
ups result in a statistical dead heat. And the President would beat
Dean (50% to 45%) and Sen. Joe Lieberman (49% to 45%).
And Democrats and Democratic learners also think Sen. John Kerry has
the best chance (48%) of defeating Bush in November, and is the
candidate mostly likely to do so (43%). Howard Dean follows at 26
percent (a drop from 38% in the 12/11-12/03 Newsweek Poll). Only 15
percent think Dean would most likely defeat Bush. In third is Wesley
Clark at 23 percent, and John Edwards at 22 percent. Only 14 percent
say Joe Lieberman has a good chance of beating George Bush.
And more registered voters (54%) and Democrats and Democratic leaners
(74%) have a favorable opinion of Kerry followed by Lieberman with 48
percent of registered voters, but only 56 percent of Democrats and
Democratic leaners. Edwards follows with 60 percent of Democrats and
Democratic leaners, but only 46 percent of registered voters.
However, 42 percent of registered voters have an unfavorable opinion
of Howard Dean, though a 57-percent majority of Democrats and
Democratic leaners has a favorable opinion of the Vermont Governor.
And the combination of Democrats considered the best ticket to beat
Bush in November among Democrats and Democratic leaners would be
Kerry-Edwards or Kerry-Clark, both at 21 percent, followed by Kerry-
Meanwhile, a week after President Bush's State of the Union address,
his approval rating has fallen to 50 percent from 54 percent in the
last Newsweek Poll (1/8-9/04). Yet, a 52-percent majority of
registered voters says it would not like to see him re-elected to a
second term. Only 44 percent say they would like to see him re-
elected, a four-point drop from the last Newsweek Poll. (Of that, 37%
strongly want to see him re-elected, and 47% strongly do not).
However, a large majority of voters (78%) says that it is very likely
(40%) or somewhat likely (38%) that Bush will in fact be re-elected
to a second term in office. Only 10 percent believe it is not too
likely or not at all likely (10%).
With 52 percent of registered voters saying they are dissatisfied
with the way things are going in the U.S. this year, the issues that
are very important in helping them determine who they will vote for
are: the economy and jobs (83%); health care (75%) and education
(74%); the situation in Iraq and terrorism and homeland security
(70%). The least important is the appointing of new Supreme Court
justices and federal judges (42%).
A 53-percent majority of Democrats and Democratic leaners say they
are more inclined to vote for the candidate who comes closest to
their way of thinking on the issues rather than the candidate with
the best chance of defeating President Bush (39%). And the large
majority (71%), says it's very important that the Democratic
presidential nominee has clear-cut alternatives to Bush on issues
like Iraq and taxes; can attract young people and other first-time
voters to turn out and support the Democratic ticket (70%);
understands the concerns of working families because he grew up in
one (64%); has foreign policy and national defense experience (56%),
and comes across as even-tempered and appeals to voters in the South
For this Newsweek Poll, Princeton Survey Research Associates
International interviewed 1,006 adults aged 18 and older on January
22-23, 2004. The margin of error is plus or minus 3 percentage
points. This poll is part of the February 2 issue of Newsweek (on
newsstands Monday, January 26).
(Read Newsweek's news releases at www.Newsweek.MSNBC.com.
Click "Pressroom" at the bottom of the page.)
DEBBIE'S STATEMENT: Semen was obtained anonymously from a semen bank
under an agreement of confidentiality. I consented to the artificial
insemination with the specific intent of bearing a child to which
Michael would be the father and treated in all respects as the
father, without the necessity of an adoption by Michael in
effectuating parental rights.
WACKO WORLD: Jackson with Prince Michael Jnr and Paris. Like him,
they are usually masked or hidden by veils when seen in public
EXCLUSIVE: Children came from sperm donor
Jacko is NOT their father
By Carole Aye Maung, US Correspondent
MEGASTAR Michael Jackson's claim he is the natural father of the two
children born to ex-wife Debbie Rowe is a LIE.
Debbie was artificially inseminated with anonymously donated sperm to
give birth to son Prince Michael Jnr and daughter Paris.
The bombshell fact - revealed by Debbie in a legal dossier - could be
her strongest weapon in her bid to wrest control of the children from
She wants to stop him using "rich and influential friends" to send
Prince Michael and Paris out of the U.S. before he faces charges of
sexually abusing a 12-year-old boy.
The News of the World has learned the secrets of the documents drawn
up by Debbie, seen with Jackson top right, as she prepares to
seek "temporary exclusive custody" of the children. The papers
Jackson hid the truth about the PATERNITY of the children, aged six
and five, when he was grilled about their light-complexioned features
by Martin Bashir for his ITV documentary. The star insisted he WAS
their true biological father.
Jacko and Debbie DID enter into a SURROGACY agreement on January 23
1996. The deal made their marriage ceremony nine months later a total
sham - aimed only at securing his parental rights.
Michael was so obsessed with controlling the creation of each child
he imposed a six-month SEX BAN on Debbie before insemination.
In return for bearing Michael two children, Debbie received a
staggering £6million PAY-OFF. She also got a £1.6million Beverly
Hills home, a car, clothes, furs and jewels. Michael continues to pay
her monthly expenses. Last month she claimed £35,000.
In the surrogacy agreement Debbie, 41, agreed to "knowingly and
voluntarily waive my right to contest Michael's paternity of either
child" and "consent to Michael being declared the father".
But in the legal documents she also described the astonishing secrets
of how she became pregnant.
Debbie states: "I have no information whatsoever about the identity
of the semen donor for either child, as such semen was obtained
anonymously from a semen bank under an agreement of confidentiality.
"I consented to the artificial insemination with the specific intent
of bearing a child to which Michael would be the father and treated
in all respects as the father..."
Blonde and blue-eyed Debbie also details how Jacko insisted that for
six months she "refrained from sexual relations and avoided any
possibility of semen being introduced into my body other than by way
of surgical artificial insemination."
On May 28 and 29, 1996, following the stipulated sex ban, Debbie was
artifically inseminated by Beverly Hills fertility specialist, Dr Hal
He confirms: "I was requested by Petitioner, Deborah Rowe Jackson and
Respondent, Michael J. Jackson to perform an artificial insemination
of semen, donated to and for the use of Respondent, into the uterus
of Petitioner for the principal purpose of assisting Respondent in
having a child of his own."
The pair married in Australia on November 15 1996, three months
before Prince Michael Jr was born.
After another four months Debbie was inseminated again, and Paris was
born in April 1998.
By October the following year the couple were divorced. Jacko went on
to have son Prince Michael II - nicknamed Blanket - with a second
His divorce agreement with Debbie shows she agreed to give him "sole
legal and physical custody".
She was allowed to visit the children only once every 45 days,
between 10am and 7pm, with their nanny Gracie Rwarmba present.
Jacko gave Debbie a first-class plane ticket for each visit. But the
following year she agreed to give up her visiting rights altogether.
In her declaration to regain custody, she explains: "In or about
November 2000, I believed that Michael was the most wonderful father
in the worldbased upon observations with him and our children."
But then her fears grew that he would send Prince Michael and Paris
out of the US.
She states: "Michael has close, influential and rich friends all over
"He has the ability to have the children taken out of the United
States and never returned. He has the financial ability to rent a
private jet at a moment's notice."
She also claims that Jackson is "easily influenced" and she fears he
is being led by extremist Muslims in the Nation of Islam movement.
She states: "Michael's involvement with a cult, Nation Of Islam, is
horrifying to me. I am Jewish and I converted to Judaism in 1982
before marrying my first husband. Therefore, our children are
Debbie says she knows the Nation of Islam "do not like Jews"
which "causes me endless worries".
She also claims she told Jacko last month she would never agree to
his "secret plans" for his mother Katherine to adopt her children.
Jackson continues to show "poor judgment," she says, in stating it is
acceptable for him to sleep in the same bed with children.
And she suggests that she move into the Neverland ranch with the
children now Michael has vowed never to return there.
Jacko has vowed to fight to keep the children. He will stand trial on
the abuse charges later this year.
DO you have a story? Call us any day on 0207 782 1001 or email us by
By MEGAN LEHMANN
Filmmaker Morgan Spurlock's new documentary, "Super Size Me,"
details his 30-day McDonald's diet and subsequent health woes.
- Julie Soefer
January 22, 2004 -- LAST February, Morgan Spurlock decided to become
a gastronomical guinea pig.
His mission: To eat three meals a day for 30 days at McDonald's and
document the impact on his health.
Scores of cheeseburgers, hundreds of fries and dozens of chocolate
shakes later, the formerly strapping 6-foot-2 New Yorker - who
started out at a healthy 185 pounds - had packed on 25 pounds.
But his supersized shape was the least of his problems.
Within a few days of beginning his drive-through diet, Spurlock, 33,
was vomiting out the window of his car, and doctors who examined him
were shocked at how rapidly Spurlock's entire body deteriorated.
"It was really crazy - my body basically fell apart over the course
of 30 days," Spurlock told The Post.
His liver became toxic, his cholesterol shot up from a low 165 to
230, his libido flagged and he suffered headaches and depression.
Spurlock charted his journey from fit to flab in a tongue-in-cheek
documentary, which he has taken to the Sundance Film Festival with
the hopes of getting a distribution deal.
"Super Size Me" explores the obesity epidemic that plagues America
today - a sort of "Bowling for Columbine" for fast food.
As well as documenting his own burger-fueled bulk-up, Spurlock
travels to 20 cities across America, interviewing people on the
street, health experts and a lobbyist for the fast-food industry.
Despite making dozens of phone calls, Spurlock fails to get anyone
from McDonald's to agree to an on-camera interview.
A spokeswoman for McDonald's told The Post yesterday that no
representatives from the corporation had seen "Super Size Me."
"Consumers can achieve balance in their daily dining decisions by
choosing from our array of quality offerings and range of portion
sizes to meet their taste and nutrition goals," McDonald's said in a
Over the course of the film, Spurlock is regularly examined by a
gastroenterologist, a cardiologist and SoHo-based general
practitioner Dr. Daryl Isaacs.
"He was an extremely healthy person who got very sick eating this
McDonald's diet," Dr. Isaacs told The Post.
"None of us imagined he could deteriorate this badly - he looked
terrible. The liver test was the most shocking thing - it became
very, very abnormal."
Spurlock has since returned to normal health. "The treatment was to
just stop doing what he was doing," Dr. Isaacs says.
Spurlock, who says he ate at McDonald's only sporadically before his
total immersion in the Mickey D's menu, says he even began craving
fat and sugar fixes between meals.
"I got desperately ill," he says. "My face was splotchy and I had
this huge gut, which I've never had in my life.
"My knees started to hurt from the extra weight coming on so quickly.
It was amazing - and really frightening."
Spurlock's girlfriend, Alex Jamieson, was horrified - she's a vegan
"She was completely disgusted by me, not happy at all," he says. "But
she realized what my goals were in trying to educate people."
Spurlock, a film producer who grew up in West Virginia and studied
ballet for eight years, was spurred to make his first feature film
while watching TV on Thanksgiving Day, 2002.
"I was feeling like a typical American on Thanksgiving - very bloated
and happy on the couch - and at some point on the news they were
talking about two women who were suing McDonald's.
"People from the food industry were saying, 'You can't link kids
being fat to our food - our food is nutritious.'
"I said, 'How nutritious is it really? Let's find out."
Not surprisingly, Spurlock has steered clear of the Golden Arches
since filming wrapped.
"I have not had McDonald's for seven months, but yesterday, during an
interview, I had a bite of a Big Mac," he says.
"I chewed it up, swallowed it and I said, 'You know what, I'm pretty
much done after that bite.'"
Diana Queen Of Heaven
Your soul and heart burned with silver starfire,
And the blood of heros coursed through your every vein.
Lineage of The Stuarts; Sovereign Queen Of England,
Yet martyred in ignomy and pain.
The Manichean duel raged in you,
Between good and evil; in contradiction to burn.
Yet you are enthroned on diadems of jewels,
And wielding sword and flame you shall return.
You were like Sophia and Charis,
In power and innocence like Persephone.
Yet tormented and taken down by usurpers,
To stop you from setting your people free.
In all of England and the Americas,
Millions saw in you their Queen.
Your dignity burning with brightest fire,
Your nobility your credo yet unseen.
Yet you were mortal and in pain you could not bear,
And there were many that would stop you from your stand.
Thwarted by tricksters beholden to the purse,
Nowhere to find a guiding hand.
Yet you scoffed at usurpers so far beneath you,
Your soul was radiant with exalting power!
You would have risen up in your people's soul,
And brought an end to their blasted tower:
Raised on falsity and lies,
With a grim curse through more cursed ages.
The boards crawling with rats and foul deceit,
Aeons of sin along with their wages.
Martyred like Charis in most vile murder,
Your legacy yet shall never end.
For in resplendance of form you shall return,
And your people will fight for you again!
Destiny yet cannot be thwarted,
To die a thousand deaths; yet never say die.
For you shall come forth to reign again,
Over the wholeness of earth, and the endless sky.
3 most-populous counties push for ballot paper trail
By Connie Piloto, Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, January 27, 2004
Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade county commissioners --
dissatisfied after spending millions on touch-screen voting machines
since the tumultuous 2000 presidential election -- agreed paper
printouts are the only way to instill public confidence in touch-
The tri-county coalition voted unanimously to send state legislators
a letter endorsing a paper trail.
"I hope this gets the legislative body to understand what we're
concerned about," said Palm Beach County Commissioner Burt Aaronson,
who raised the issue at a meeting Monday.
There has been considerable reason for worry. When the touch-screen
machines debuted in 2002 Florida gubernatorial elections, the results
were tainted by many non-votes tallied in Broward and Miami-Dade. The
problem surfaced again in a Jan. 6 special election for a Broward and
Palm Beach county state House seat.
That race was decided by 12 votes -- with 137 voters casting blank
ballots, or "under-votes."
"Nobody can believe that 137 people went to the last election and
decided not to vote," Aaronson said. "They didn't go in there to wait
for a bus."
The contested results prompted Palm Beach County commissioners to
vote for a statewide mandate for paper voting receipts.
Monday's tri-county push for a paper trail comes just 10 months
before the presidential election, making it highly unlikely that new
equipment would be ready in time.
But timing wasn't an issue Monday. "We need to take a position," said
Broward County Mayor Ilene Lieberman. "We need... paper receipts."
The move faces considerable resistance. Fifteen Florida counties,
including Martin, have switched to paperless touch-screen voting
systems since punch cards fell from favor after the 2000 election.
Many of Florida's county election supervisors say touch screens work
fine, that there's no need for a paper record. Florida Secretary of
State Glenda Hood, the state's top elections official, said she
supports the supervisors' position.
The touch screens used in Palm Beach County already warn voters three
times before they can cast a blank ballot. And defenders of paperless
voting say the machines are rigorously tested and have multiple
safeguards against errors and tampering. They say adding printers
would create new costs and delays and place an additional burden on
poll workers to fix inevitable paper jams and other printer problems.
But critics claim the electronic systems still are susceptible to
errors and fraud that can't be detected without a backup paper
record. Proponents argue the printouts would reduce voter confusion
in the polling place.
Most paper-trail proposals call for a printout of a voter's
selections that the voter could verify before casting an electronic
ballot. To prevent tampering, the printout would be displayed behind
glass or plastic so the voter could not touch it. After an electronic
vote is cast, the paper record would feed into a locked box and could
serve as a backup if questions arose about an election.
Sequoia Voting Systems, which made Palm Beach County's touch screens,
is developing a printer that it says would add about $500 to the cost
of a voting machine -- about $2.5 million for the county's 5,000
machines. But the printers have not yet been certified by federal or
state authorities, which makes it nearly impossible to have them
ready for Florida's fall elections.
"It's not too big a price to pay," Aaronson said. "We spent 36 days
in 2000 trying to figure out who won the election. How much money did
that cost us?"