- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Ringo remembers
"The only pity about the [Beatles documentary] 'Anthology' was that John wasn't actually there, so most of his observations were from a very different period, when he felt a lot of anger. I think that would be changed now. We'd mellowed a bit: We were hanging out with each other….
"Whatever you want to think, [John Lennon] was the original member. He brought the other two in, and brought me in. Paul was the workaholic: If it hadn't been for Paul, we probably would have made a lot less records. John and I would be resting in the country, and Paul would say, 'Do you want to come in and make a record?' …
"I think the reason the Beatles split up was because we were 30, and it was, 'Hey, I've got married. I've got kids, I've got a few more friends.' We didn't have the energy to put into it. If we had stayed together, we'd have all been in separate suites and our own cars. It wouldn't have been us, the boys, doing it….
"[W]hen we'd finished touring for good, I remember calling my mum. I said, 'We're not going to tour anymore.' She said, 'That's good, son but you'll play Liverpool, won't you?'"
Ringo Starr, interviewed by John Harris, in the April 17 issue of Rolling Stone
Warning signal
"A court in London, Ontario, has been asked to declare three people the legal parents of a single child (the biological mother and father, and the lesbian partner of the natural mother)…. All three adults consider that they are sharing the duties of parenthood.
"This case is immensely significant, because it could easily and obviously lead to the effective abolition of marriage….
"Last week, a judge … reluctantly turned down the application to grant legal status to three parents….
"Family Court Justice David Aston declared that he would like to have granted the petitioner's application, if only he had the power. By his own account, the only reason this judge held back from granting legal parenthood of a single child to three adults is that he lacked the jurisdiction under the relevant law….
"The movement for gay marriage has failed at the ballot box, yet is on the verge of winning in our courts…. The end of the line is the end of marriage unless we wake up now."
Stanley Kurtz, writing on "Seeing the Slip," Monday in National Review Online at www.nationalreview.com
Deutsch diva
"Leni Riefenstahl 'Hitler's filmmaker' must have hoped that her 100th birthday this past August would bring that final rehabilitation of reputation for which she has worked with awe-inspiring tenacity since the Thousand-Year Reich collapsed and took her career with it. But the birthday changed nothing: Riefenstahl remains the most important female film director in history, and the most controversial….
"Riefenstahl's admirers and detractors alike offer as evidence for their views the two works on which her reputation largely rests: 'Triumph of the Will' (1935), her film of the 1934 Nazi Party Congress, and 'Olympia' (1938), her two-part film of the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games. Even American writer Susan Sontag, one of Riefenstahl's harshest critics, allows that the films 'may be the two greatest documentaries ever made.' But they are branded with the stigma of Riefenstahl's sponsor, Adolf Hitler. …
"Riefenstahl vehemently maintains that 'Triumph of the Will' and 'Olympia' are not propaganda, as any good propagandist would. She assiduously cultivates her image as an artist on the high road to beauty, and she fields even hostile questions with ease, her manner ranging from faux-naive to diva-imperious."
Steven Bach, writing on "The Puzzle of Leni Riefenstahl," in the Wilson Quarterly

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