Update: Company to Probe Coulter Plagiarism Charges
By Justin Rood - July 5, 2006, 2:35 PM
I heard back from Universal Press Syndicate's Kathie Kerr. Her company distributes Ann Coulter's column to over 100 newspapers around the country -- columns which, according to recent news, may have contained plagiarized material.
I had asked Kerr earlier this morning whether her company was taking any action in response to these published claims.
In an email, Kerr thanked me for bringing the assertions to UPS's attention, and asked me to get a copy of the report to them. "If Mr. Barrie would be so kind to send Lee Salem, President and Editor of Universal Press Syndicate his report, we will be happy to review it. Until we do, there's little we can say about it," she wrote me. John Barrie was the New York Post's expert source who claimed to have identified Coulter's plagiarized passages.
In my reply, I explained to Kerr that Barrie had been quoted not by me but by the New York Post, and perhaps that paper would be a good source of information. Kerr replied: "we have no contact information."
A few minutes later, however, Ms. Kerr located Barrie's contact information on the Web and said she would try to call him herself. Moments later, another email from Ms. Kerr arrived: "I've left Mr. Barrie a message."
Sounds like the Coulter plagiarism investigation is off to a flying start. I've put in a call myself to Mr. Barrie, and am waiting to hear back. I'll let you know what I find out.LINK: TPMMuckraker.com: Company to Probe Coulter Plagiarism Charges
No Charges for Limbaugh Over Viagra
By BRIAN SKOLOFF, Associated Press Writer Wed Jul 5, 7:25 PM ET
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Rush Limbaugh will not face charges in Palm Beach County for the bottle of Viagra found in his luggage that was prescribed in his psychologist's name, prosecutors said Wednesday.
Charges could have nullified the conservative radio host's plea agreement in a "doctor shopping" case.
Limbaugh, 55, was detained for more than three hours at Palm Beach International Airport on June 26 after he returned on his private plane from a vacation in the Dominican Republic.
The state attorney's office said the medication was prescribed by Limbaugh's cardiologist, Dr. Steven Schnur, to Limbaugh's psychologist and addiction counselor, Steve Strumwasser. Strumwasser then provided the Viagra to Limbaugh, said state attorney spokesman Mike Edmondson.
Strumwasser told authorities he "agreed to have his name on the label in an effort to avoid potentially embarrassing publicity for the suspect," according to the state attorney's office filing. "Thus, the medication contained in the subject pill bottle was legitimately prescribed to the suspect by his physician."
It is generally not illegal under Florida law for a physician to prescribe medication in a third party's name if all parties are aware and the doctor documents it correctly, Edmondson said.
However, since the doctor wrote the prescription in Miami-Dade County, the case was forwarded to prosecutors there for review. The Miami-Dade state attorney's office had no immediate comment.
The Palm Beach County state attorney's office also said it forwarded the matter to the state Department of Professional Regulation and the Department of Health to determine whether the doctor breached ethics.
Department spokeswoman Thometta Cozart said she did not know whether the prescription was an ethical breach.
Limbaugh said on his radio show Wednesday that prosecutors declined to file charges because "there were no laws broken."
The office of Limbaugh's lawyer, Roy Black, referred questions Wednesday to Limbaugh spokesman Tony Knight. Knight declined to comment.
In an affidavit, Limbaugh said: "Dr. Strumwasser has been extraordinarily careful, at my request, to protect my privacy in all matters concerning his treatment of me."
Schnur had no comment because of patient confidentiality concerns, said spokesman Todd Templin. Calls seeking comment from Strumwasser were not immediately returned Wednesday.
Charges in the Viagra case could have nullified a deal Limbaugh reached with prosecutors last month in which a single "doctor shopping" charge was deferred for 18 months, so long as Limbaugh does not get arrested for any reason.
Authorities had accused Limbaugh of illegally deceiving multiple doctors to get overlapping painkiller prescriptions. Limbaugh denied the charges but acknowledged he was addicted to painkillers.LINK: Associated Press: No Charges for Limbaugh
And they accuse liberals of veing immoral!