Author Topic: [Google] Who wants to be a billionaire? The James Packer story - Ninemsn  (Read 935 times)

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Who wants to be a billionaire? The James Packer story - Ninemsn
18 January 2010, 6:24 pm

James Packer haemorrhaged his riches at $8000 a minute, $480,000 an hour or $11.5 million a day on average during the financial crisis last year.

And if, like me, you were given Who wants to be a billionaire? The James Packer story for Christmas, you might be feeling more than a little short changed too.

Famed for his investigative journalism, and as author of The Rise and Rise of Kerry Packer, Paul Barry's tome on James Packer promised to be a scintillating romp through the life of one of Australia's most powerful men.

I note it was recently listed as an "inspirational read for 2010", albeit by Fitness First's in-house magazine.

However, anyone expecting inspiration to strike upon reading this will be sorely disappointed.

From the outset it reads as a chapter from Kerry Packer's biography, rather than his son's.

Granted, James will always live in the Big Man's shadow but I was disappointed by the pitiful lack of intimate insight into James' life outside of the board room.

Barry's powerful research on Kerry is all too often relied upon to spice up the book and sadly it only serves to highlight the flimsy material he has gathered on James.

As an unofficial biography, Barry was dismissed with "no comment" from the Packer camp and his hard-won sources all too often sound like disgruntled ex-employees or hangers-on from another era.

Chapter One rounds up Packer's teen years with the rather weak: "sadly, history does not relate how James's school career ended" — providing a spring board for more patchy research on his private life to come.

Packer's romantic dalliances are hastily covered in one Chapter, entitled 'Playboy models', and his scarcely mentioned friends are branded sycophantic lads. A fair go or an easy picture to paint?

The ultimate let down is Barry's referral to Wikipedia as a source for background on Scientology, for it is "as good as any".

Anyone can add information to a Wikipedia page: it's an unofficial encyclopaedia that cannot be relied on for fact.

more at
« Last Edit: January 20, 2010, 22:21 by mefree »
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