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Saturday, April 2, 2005; Page C03

Neil Young Suffers Brain Aneurysm

Neil Young was treated for a brain aneurysm Tuesday night, his publicist announced Friday.

The aneurysm was discovered after the 59-year-old rocker's vision became blurry while attending the March 14 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremonies in New York. Though he remains hospitalized, Young is expected to make a full recovery. However, he will not perform Sunday at the Juno Awards -- the Canadian equivalent of the Grammys -- as had been expected.

Neil Young is expected to make a full recovery from a brain aneurysm. (Julie Jacobson -- AP)

"I'm really disappointed that I won't be able to make it to Winnipeg for the Junos as I had hoped," Young said in a statement. "I grew up there and was really looking forward to the show as well as spending some time with my old friends and family.

"Thanks to my doctors, I'm feeling a lot better now so I hope I can get a rain check."

A Savage Diatribe About Madonna

"Liberalism Is a Mental Disorder" author Michael Savage certainly lived up to his name in a recent tirade about Madonna.

"Here's a woman who made a career as a pseudo-pornographic belly dancer cavorting with a whip, and now suddenly, after having a baby, she pretends to be a holy woman riding her bicycle in England on her country estate with her imbecilic buddy, Gwyneth Paltrow," the New York Post reports him as saying. "They both fled America because America wasn't clean enough for their offspring. In Madonna's view, we're a spiritually bankrupt nation -- which she helped create! What could Madonna know about the sacred arm of Judaism? Answer: Nothing!"

Madonna's rep Liz Rosenberg dismissed the rant yesterday by telling us: "He can't even tie the red string on her Kabbalah bracelet."

Liz Smith's Not Leaving Quietly

Longtime gossip columnist Liz Smith and Newsday have gone their separate ways after 14 years together.

"They offered her a new contract that would have paid her 5 percent of her current contract," Smith's lawyer David Blasband said of Smith, who reportedly earns more than $1 million a year. (Hold on, we'll do the math -- that's like, 50 grand?)

"The relationship has been very harmonious until they got into a circulation problem and they let a bunch of people go," Blasband told the New York Daily News, "and you can draw your own conclusions as to what happened after that."

After his sudden announcement that Thursday was Smith's last, Newsday editor John Mancini said Smith's contract had expired. "We subsequently attempted to negotiate a new arrangement with her but could not come to mutually agreeable terms," Mancini wrote in a memo to employees. "Newsday has enjoyed a long and productive relationship with Liz and we wish her the very best."

Smith, 82,however, wants to go to arbitration. "I think Newsday wants me to be its next victim to help pay for its own mismanagement," she told Newsday reporter James T. Madore. "They know very well that I always intended to go on writing for them to the bitter end. . . . I love Long Island. I'm really unhappy my column won't be reaching Newsday readers."

Smith will continue to gossip via a separate syndication deal in about 70 newspapers. Her column is distributed by Tribune Media Services -- which is run by the same company that, umm, owns Newsday.

The Greens Party Candidate?

Is this Attack-Conservatives-With-Food Week and we just don't know it? Tuesday night, William Kristol got hit with a pie while speaking at Earlham College in Richmond, Ind. Two days later, Pat Buchanan got whapped with salad dressing while speaking at Western Michigan University.

"Stop the bigotry!" the dressing hurler shouted. Buchanan prematurely ended his Q & A session, saying: "Thank you all for coming, but I'm going to have to get my hair washed."

Authorities did not name the 24-year-old student at Kalamazoo Valley Community College, who was arrested for disturbing the peace and released on a $100 cash bond. A ranchy-looking Buchanan declined to press felony charges.

-- Compiled by Anne Schroeder

from staff and wire reports

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