Two Sides of Manhattan's Celebrity Gossip Factory Weigh In on Casey JohnsonS

At New York today: former über-flack Lizzie Grubman talking on Nightline about the pains of being a heiress. Next, Page Six-er Paula Froelich recalls the business of covering "people being stuck in the wrong role in an Edith Wharton novel."

Grubman and Froelich were, for a time, like the Sheepdog and Wolf of the NYC gossip business. They were adversaries by day, but ultimately both punching the clock at the same factory of producing marketable young socialites who need to get famous. Grubman, who became a story herself when she backed her SUV into a Hamptons nightclub, says the drive for fame is destructive and makes these girls "sad." She uses her own headline-making event to illustrate the evils of being a rich girl who has lots of money and likes clothes and wants to be on a reality show. We would almost believe this if she wasn't on MTV's PoweR Girls a good four years after the incident at Conscience Point. Either she still hasn't learned her own lesson, or it just took her a very long time. Either way, she still looks like she's in the game.

Froelich has given that up, choosing to make her bid to become an author of books that will hopefully lead to TV and film riches. And with her distance, she gives us an insider's view about what makes these people so messed up and how she kept seeing the same trainwrecks recur. She deftly takes down our whole tawdry Celebrity Industrial Complex.

Six months before Casey died alone on the holidays, I quit that job. I was becoming too cynical, seeing the same train wrecks happen over and over. I did the job during a time of "celebreality"-where people could get famous for doing nothing or just trying to be "scandalous." You would have to hang out with and report on uneducated, basically illiterate people who were glorified for showing their private parts. Sure, you could take them down a notch, show them for what they were, but you were still keeping the carnaval going.