The Rap on 50 Cent

Sunday's Washington visit by hip-hop phenom 50 Cent -- aka Curtis Jackson -- is still provoking bad feelings and bitter words.

Yesterday local concert promoter Ron Moten -- who says he ended up dropping $30,000 for the Rolling Stone magazine cover subject's 25-minute performance, plus an additional $9,000 for planes, limos and hotel rooms for Jackson and his huge posse -- received this e-mail from the rapper's manager, Mike Lighty: "I read the post" -- a reference to our colleague David Segal's account of 50 Cent's near no-show at the D.C. Armory because of haggling over his fee. "Your some corny ass niggas fronting like your had a nigga under pressure and that's why show went down. Never again will I show you love...That newspaper stunt was real weak."

Moten told us: "We all just had a big laugh over that one. He didn't show us love in the first place. If they keep acting like this, they're not going to last long in this business."

We might be in the market for a Kevlar vest.

Errors and Omissions

* PBS's "NewsHour" with Jim Lehrer was eyeball to eyeball with "Fox News Sunday With Tony Snow" -- and yesterday "NewsHour" blinked.

On Monday, Fox News publicist Paul Schur registered the first of several objections to "NewsHour" media correspondent Terence Smith's characterization of Snow's program -- in Smith's report on the influence of the Washington Sunday shows -- as a "cable broadcast." As such, it was apparently unworthy of more than a mention in Smith's 8 1/2-minute piece that featured NBC's Tim Russert, CBS's Bob Schieffer and ABC's George Stephanopoulos.

But Smith did admit to Schur that he'd made a boo-boo. After all, Snow's program is aired nationwide on 213 Fox stations, two more than Schieffer's "Face the Nation" boasts. But, Smith explained, an on-air correction was very unlikely amid the pressing demands of covering a war.

A correction was posted on the "NewsHour" Web site. Actually, four different corrections -- because Schur kept calling Smith to quibble with the wording of each subsequent attempt. In the first two, the "NewsHour" announced that it "regrets the error." In Corrections 3 and 4, the show regretted "the omission."

Yesterday Smith explained that the first two references to an "error" was itself in error: " 'Fox News Sunday' is broadcast on the Fox News Channel, so we were incomplete, not wrong."

Meanwhile, Snow told us: "I'm flattered that the 'NewsHour,' for our sake, would perform a quadruple double correction with three half-twists. That's a high degree of difficulty."

Late yesterday, "NewsHour" executive producer Lester Crystal told us that Lehrer was planning to do a full-dress correction on last night's show -- adding a new degree of derring-do to Snow's gymnastics metaphor.

"I would think they're bucking for a 10," Snow said, "but we will have to see how the execution works out."


* Throwing out the baby with the Evian water? Vanity Fair -- which each year generates tons of ink and television coverage with editor Graydon Carter's star-glutted Oscar party -- has decided to ban the news media entirely from Morton's restaurant in Beverly Hills this Sunday. "We're following the lead of the Academy, which means we won't have an arrivals area or a red carpet," spokeswoman Beth Kseniak told us. "So there won't be photographers or television cameras. And if we don't have the broadcast media, we can't have print press, either." Sounds like we'll have to find all the talkative movie stars at the Miramax party.

* If it's not prostate surgery, it's growth removal for Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry. Yesterday the Massachusetts senator went under the knife to have a benign seborrheic keratosis removed from his left upper eyelid. The Associated Press reports that the surgery in Boston, a month after Kerry's successful prostate cancer operation, left the candidate with a black eye.

"I think we should do the Oscars and have the war wait. Saddam already said he won't go away. I think the best thing is Bush should wait until Monday."

-- Caterer to the Stars Wolfgang Puck, complaining to The Post's Sharon Waxman yesterday about the havoc U.S. military action in Iraq might wreak on his efforts to serve 1,600 lavish dinners Sunday night to attendees of the Motion Picture Academy's Governors Ball after the Oscar ceremony. Puck added that if the dinner were canceled, he could keep the lobsters alive and fresh, but 500 pounds of imported sea bass would be lost.