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Beyond Casey Johnson: Socialites we don't worry about

Casey gallery refer Casey Johnson's legacy is now the stuff of cautionary tales, but notwithstanding her adventures with Courtenay Semel and Tila Tequila, the blond was a member of a very select crowd: heirs and heiresses to outrageous fortune.

As Casey is laid to rest at her family's plot in New Jersey -- Paris and Nicky Hilton are expected among the mourners, Tila is likely not -- we at the Ministry would like to turn the spotlight on some of her society peers who are making good use of their good fortune. Click on the photo of Casey at right to launch a photo gallery of to-the-manner-born names we don't have to worry about.

[Updated, 11:42 a.m., Jan. 11: Casey has not yet been laid to rest, according to a family source.]

Whether it's billionaire heiress Athina Onassis-Miranda (granddaughter of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis' second husband, Aristotle) or publishing princess Amanda Hearst, these lucky few are on the up and up -- witness graceful Aerin Lauder, who has taken the reins at her grandmother's beauty empire, Estée Lauder

Upstart Samantha Marq, in line to inherit cleaning-product empire SC Johnson, is pushing ahead on her debut pop music effort, enlisting producers who've worked with the likes of Britney Spears and Leighton Meester.  And the lovely Dylan Lauren owns a cool candy store and contributes bunches to charity, even though designer dad Ralph Lauren could keep her lounging in Polo for a lifetime.

The ladies don't get all the fun, mind you: Anderson Cooper and Alexander von Furstenberg are also part of the gang.

[For the record: An earlier version of this post used "to the manor born," an incorrect variant of the phrase. From the original Shakespeare, it is correctly "to the manner born." Thanks to commenter Typhus.]

[Update, 9:02 a.m., Jan. 11: Because of continued interest in the phrase referenced above (see comments), the Ministry has added a poll.]

-- Matt Donnelly and Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Casey Johnson at a West Hollywood magazine party in January 2008. Credit: L. Martinez / Associated Press

Related dispatches from or endorsed by the Ministry of Gossip: 

Heiress Casey Johnson dead at 30

Heiress Casey Johnson to be buried on East Coast; questions over death remain

Coroner to perform autopsy; determining Casey Johnson's cause of death could take weeks

Tila Tequila engaged to heiress Casey Johnson, she says

Brittany Murphy dies at 32; young Hollywood reacts

Brittany Murphy's death certificate released; cause of death deferred

Tila Tequila is pregnant or married or something? 

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Comments () | Archives (8)

Why do we want to hear about the wonderful lives of the aristocracy? This is supposed to be a democracy. We're not supposed to have an inherited aristocracy in this country.

I really don't care about socialites. What about all those wonderful people out there whose biggest accomplishment wasn't being born in the right womb with the right sperm?

The phrase is: "to the manner born."

@Typhus -- Christie D'Zurilla here from the Ministry. Thanks! Error is fixed.


Well, Patricia, I like hearing about rich people and the things they do. If you don't then don't read articles about them. That should take care of your problem.

I like this story because we only hear about the "bad kids" of rich people/celebrities, never about the good ones. I believe that for every Casey Johnson there are ten young, rich girls who do good things for the less fortunate. Wish there were more stories about them.

On another note, why don't writers ever call Athina Roussel by her father's last name instead of Onassis? I just think it's strange, especially since she does have a father. And, it's nice that Athina has found happiness out of the spotlight, unlike her poor mother.

Actually, the phrase is " to the MANOR born"!

It's "to the manor born," not "manner." A manor is a country estate for the gentry.

@Joan denton @craig -- Christie D'Zurilla here again. Nobody agreed with the link in my original comment? Yes, a manor is a country estate, and the British sitcom is "To the Manor Born." However, the earliest origins of the phrase appear to be with Shakespeare; in "Hamlet" he writes "to the manner born."

Some years after that, the punning appears to have begun.

Here's another source:


Seems that in common parlance, however, the pun has overtaken the original, and both are acceptable. Unless, of course, you're a traditionalist.


The Ministry's takeaway lesson here is that next time we should simply write, "Click on the photo of Casey at right to launch a photo gallery of wealthy scions whom we don't have to worry about."

Which would of course then set off a discussion of whether the pronoun should be "whom," "who" or "that" -- plus comments a dozen people who inform us that we can't end a sentence with a preposition, and a blurt from the one guy who informs us that a Scion is a type of Toyota vehicle and has nothing to do with Casey Johnson at all.


Hey, look! I've added a poll for your interactive enjoyment. Never let it be said that the Ministry doesn't pay attention to comments.



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