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Dateline: Events/Headlines - Week of March 23, 1988 In News, Pop Culture, Tech, Celebrity, Entertainment & Fascinating Facts


In The News

Former Reagan aides Oliver North, John Poindexter and two associates plead not guilty to charges they ran the Iran-contra scandal as a vast criminal conspiracy and defrauded the government of $17 million.

Sandinista and Contra leaders sign a preliminary agreement to end the Nicaraguan war.

The Senate gives approval to a $48-million humanitarian aid bill that will break a one-month draught in the flow of U.S. supplies to Nicaragua’s contra rebels and send medical care to war-injured children.

President Reagan is ready to campaign for George Bush, convinced that his vice president has the Republican presidential nomination sewed up.

Rev. Jesse Jackson defeats Gov. Michael Dukakis in the Michigan Democratic presidential caucuses.

Sen. Bob Dole ends his Republican presidential bid saying, “You come to trust your instincts to tell you it’s over.”

President Reagan says that he still thinks fired National Security Council aide Oliver L. North is a hero and that he does not believe any of the Iran-Contra criminal defendants committed a crime.

Rep. Richard Gephardt, who fell short of the “Michigan miracle” he needed to revive his candidacy, quit the race for the democratic presidential nomination but said “our effort was not in vain.”

In New York - 28 current and former health inspectors are named in complaints accusing them of extorting hundreds of thousands of dollars from restaurants to ignore sanitary code violations.

President Regan scoffs at those who se his political strength diminishing, telling a business group that despite all the talk of his lame-duck status, “I have not quacked once.”

Business – Wall Street “whiz kid” David Bloom pleads guilty to mail and securities fraud for allegedly bilking investors out of $10 million which he sunk into artwork, cars and two homes.

Disgraced TV evangelist Jimmy Swaggart is barred from the pulpit for at least a year and ordered not to appear on his television show for a year in connection with allegations he hired a prostitute.

 Jimmy Swaggart decides to return to the pulpit and the airwaves, defying national Assemblies of God church officials who suspended him for a year over visits to a prostitute.

Mary Beth Whitehead-Gould admits that she sold the story of her wedding and photos of Baby M. the child she bore under a surrogate motherhood contract to a supermarket tabloid for $20,000 last November.

New Jersey - Surrogate mother Mary Beth Whitehead-Gould has asked for twice-a-week visitation with Baby M. while the child’s father wants to block all visitation, according to court briefs.

President Reagan and his wife, Nancy sign a three-year lease on a $2.5 million estate in the Bel-Air section of Los Angeles to live in after they leave the White House next January.


Economy news – March 23, 1988

The price of first-class postage will go up to 25 cents beginning April 3.

Consumer prices inch-up .2% in February as GNP increases at a yearly 4.8%


 Music news – March 23, 1988

Singer “Tiffany” Renee Darwish – the 16-year-old teen hit sensation, is living with her aunt and is at the center of a legal tug-of-war between her manager and her mother. The matter is in the hands of a juvenile court mediator in Los Angeles. She is seeking rights to execute her own contracts. Her mother, Janie Williams has retained sole custody of Tiffany since her divorce from Tiffany’s stepfather – Daniel Williams. Her real father, James Darwish, relinquished custody to Mrs. Williams after their early 1970’s divorce.

Hip Hop rivalry – L.L. Cool J. and Kool Moe Dee, who take pot shots at each other on records.

Passing – Robert Joffrey of ballet fame. He was 57.


Entertainment news – March 23, 1988

James Bridges-directed “Bright Lights, Big City,” opens this week and it stars Michael J. Fox. It’s the first time Michael J. Fox will star in a dramatic and “ugly” role.


Television news – March 23, 1988

Veteran CBS newsman Douglas Edwards signs-off after 40 years on network television.

Actor Howard Rollins Jr. is freed on a $5,000 bond in Baton Rouge after being charged with possession of crack.

Nickelodeon cable – After “Raffi” the singer, the children’s cable channel is adding another Canadian show and talent to its line-up. Look for “Sharon Lois & Bram’s Elephant Show” which has been on Canadian television for the past four years.

Because of a writer’s strike, producers of ABC’s “Moonlighting” were forced to fill abut 10 minutes of air time this week. What did they do? The cast sang “Wooly Bully,” the 1965 hit. During the song, the show’s writers sat at desks waving picket signs to the beat.


Sunday night television – March 23, 1988

CBS – CBS, Murder, She Wrote, Movie

NBC – Our House Family Ties, Day by day, Lincoln

ABC – Movie, Supercarrier, Movie

Fox – 21 Jump Street, Werewolf, Married With Children, It’s Garry Shandling’s Show, Duet, Tracey Ullman

PBS – Nature, Masterpiece Theatre

MTV – Monty Python, Young Ones, Comic Strip Presents, 120 Minutes


Our House – David is in a coma after a bicycle accident.


Top movies – March 23, 1988

Biloxi Blues

Johnny Be Good

The Fox and the Hound

Police Academy 5

Good Morning Vietnam

A New Life

School Daze


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