Diary of a Mad County

FRIDAY, Nov. 15 Possible 2006 Republican gubernatorial candidate Arnold Schwarzenegger does Bill Clinton one better. "I did smoke a joint, and I did inhale," he tells The New York Times. Actually, Arnie has no choice but to admit he smoked the pot, seeing as how it's captured on film in the unedited, 25-year anniversary rerelease of the bodybuilding documentary Pumping Iron debuting tonight on Cinemax. Wonder how that's gonna sit with his presumed running mate and drug warrior, Orange County Sheriff Mike Carona?

SATURDAY, Nov. 16 The Los Angeles Times reports that the U.S. Justice Department is investigating Village Voice Media(VVM), the company that owns the Weekly and other papers. The probe into possible anti-trust violations centers around an agreement reached earlier this year between VVM and New Times Mediaof Phoenix that resulted in VVM folding its competing paper in Cleveland and New Times closing up shop in Los Angeles—home of VVM's LA Weekly. We wonder why the Times essentially buries the story on the front page of Calendar. Surely this belongs several pages forward in the news or business sections. If we were cynics, we'd surmise that the Times doesn't want to draw too much attention to the case because of its own squishy cooperative advertising deals with competing Southern California newspaper chains. Good thing we aren't cynics.

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