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For Clinton, other women, sick days are a luxury

In “Clinton’s Sick Days” – a column in today’s New York Times about Hillary Clinton’s failure to disclose she has pneumonia before getting sick at New York’s 9/11 ceremony – Frank Bruni writes: “Her self-protection is a perverse form of self-destruction.” 

While I would agree that she is a controlled and controlling woman – the result of having an open, philandering husband, the lack of power for women and her own Scorpio nature – that’s not what’s at play here. Or rather all that is at play here.

Women are raised to care for others. The not-so-subtle message is keep calm, carry on and don’t make a big deal of your cancer, recent surgery, etc. Lives are depending on you. ...

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9/11, full circle: Clint Eastwood’s ‘Sully’

It’s no accident that Warner Bros. released “Sully” on the weekend of 9/11.

The Clint Eastwood thriller – about the 2009 “Miracle on the Hudson,” in which Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger guided a US Airways airbus, crippled by a bird strike, onto the icy waters of the river, thus saving all 155 souls on board – is 9/11 in reverse or, perhaps, come full circle. Instead of terrorists piloting planes into skyscrapers, Sully (the reliably excellent Tom Hanks), assisted by co-pilot Jeff Skiles (Aaron Eckhart), sought to avert that catastrophe by heading toward the only unobstructed area, the open waters of the Hudson.

It’s giving nothing away, however, to say that the film opens with the alternative scenario. We watch the airbus pierce glass and steel with the sickening feeling that by now is all-too-familiar before we see Sully jolt awake. The alternative scenario is one of his nightmares so it doesn’t have to be ours. It is to Eastwood’s credit as a storyteller – working from a taut screenplay by Tom Komarnicki based on Sullenberger’s book, “Highest Duty” – that we see snatches of the accident and its heroic aftermath many times from many different perspectives before we see it unfold twice in real time. ...

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9/11 – a remembrance

It was a beautiful day: That’s what I remember thinking. And it’s probably the first thing anyone who is old enough to remember it will tell you about it.  

Seamless sky, what pilots call severe clear. Had to be. The men who brought those buildings down didn’t know how to pilot a plane beyond flying straight, so conditions had to be optimal. The day before, Sept. 10, it had rained. The next was a different story.

It had started promisingly enough. I was working on a piece about the 75th anniversary of the Chrysler Building – the favorite landmark of New Yorkers – and had a 7:30 a.m. interview with William Ivey Long, costume designer for the Broadway hit “The Producers,” whose designs for the show included a gown inspired by the building’s diadem top. Long was a terrific interview but soon excused himself for what he said was a busy day. Delighted with his remarks, I wished him joy of it. ...

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