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Stomach-turners of the morning

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By Michelle Malkin  •  July 2, 2009 10:11 AM

I half-joked grimly the other day on Twitter that Joe Jackson was so crass he’d charge admission to his son’s funeral.

And now this:

Fans who wish to attend Michael Jackson’s star-studded memorial service at Staples Center will have to shell out $25 to sit in the stands, RadarOnline.com has learned exclusively.

Family, friends and VIPS will have seats on the main floor for The Tuesday, July 7th Staples service, first reported by RadarOnline.com, while the general public will be plucking down $25 to sit in the stands.

The memorial service will feel like a concert production featuring guest speakers, a lot of music and video screens inside and outside of Staples, a source close to the planning tells RadarOnline.com.

While we’re on the subject of pimps, how about those Washington Post mack daddies?

For $25,000 to $250,000, The Washington Post is offering lobbyists and association executives off-the-record, nonconfrontational access to “those powerful few” — Obama administration officials, members of Congress, and the paper’s own reporters and editors.

The astonishing offer is detailed in a flier circulated Wednesday to a health care lobbyist, who provided it to a reporter because the lobbyist said he feels it’s a conflict for the paper to charge for access to, as the flier says, its “health care reporting and editorial staff.”

The offer — which essentially turns a news organization into a facilitator for private lobbyist-official encounters — is a new sign of the lengths to which news organizations will go to find revenue at a time when most newspapers are struggling for survival.

And it’s a turn of the times that a lobbyist is scolding The Washington Post for its ethical practices.

“Underwriting Opportunity: An evening with the right people can alter the debate,” says the one-page flier. “Underwrite and participate in this intimate and exclusive Washington Post Salon, an off-the-record dinner and discussion at the home of CEO and Publisher Katharine Weymouth. … Bring your organization’s CEO or executive director literally to the table. Interact with key Obama administration and congressional leaders …

***

Twitter quip of the morning from Lindsay Janeway: “[T]he Washington Compost = presstitutes – Now we know the real reason their papers are sold on the corner.”

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