We have a very simple philosophy: we don’t speak ill of the dead, with the hope that they return the favor. But in the case of Anna Nicole Smith, we cannot remain silent.
She ran, what could charitably be called her love life, like a bakery: pick a number and stand in line. Unfortunately, we never made a trip to that bakery, so we can definitely state we are not the father of her child and would, if the price was right, immediately agree to a DNA test.
Usually, when the question of paternity comes up, all the candidates immediately take a plane to Uganda and swear that when the deed was done they were watching a movie with an Eskimo in Siberia. For the first time in history, it’s like fighting to get into Macy’s when the doors open in the morning for the after-Christmas sale.
Apparently, Anna was egalitarian with her charms. She was an equal opportunity provider. Age, religion, nationality, or ethnicity played no role in her choices — and for this we applaud her (particularly the “age” part.)
Prince Frederic von Anhalt, who allegedly purchased his title on eBay and who sued Pfizer, the maker of Viagra, claims to be the father of Anna’s child. If he is telling the truth, and, at his age, he fathered the child, he should be paying Pfizer, rather than suing them. When the reporters asked him how his wife Zsa Zsa would react to his announcement, he said she is free to sue him for divorce if she chooses. He neglected to point out that at the age of ninety-three, most women (and men) can hardly make the trip to the toilet, let alone to a lawyer’s office.
Then there is the Minister of Immigration in the Bahamas. He allegedly also slept with her. Presumably, as suggested, she did this in an effort to speed up her effort to immigrate to the Bahamas. We must uncharitably observe that sleeping with him might be a good reason for somebody to speed up their immigration out of the Bahamas.
Then there is Ron Burkhart. He has gone to court to prove he is the father. Most men who end up in paternity court hire lawyers to prove they are not the father.
The only person we believe is certainly not the father is Howard Stern — the guy listed as the father on the birth certificate. Stern could have ended this fiasco by simply agreeing to a DNA test as ordered by the California court. He is resisting this, in our opinion, because it will clearly show he is not the father. The DNA will exclude him, but it cannot point a finger at the real father unless he agrees to be tested. And in that regard, apparently, the tester will have to work his way through the entire male population in Los Angles over the age of fourteen, not to mention also those living in select parts of the Bahamas.
Does any of this make sense?
The driving force behind all of these efforts, in our cynical opinion, is money.
The existing will, naming Stern Executor, Trustee and Guardian, has flaws big enough for Anna at her blimpiest to jump through. Anna, as anyone who had the bad taste and honesty to admit that they watched her reality TV show could see, was a basket case. Frequently, she was so zonked out she could not walk unassisted, slurred her words and generally made a pathetic fool of herself, often aided by Stern — her care giver, or at the very least her enabler. California does not, except under certain circumstances, allow a care giver to inherit under a will. And he, arguably, fits into this category. After this issue is considered, as far as the will is concerned, one has to deal with her lack of capacity and the question of possible duress. All of these things will be examined in discovery proceedings. The fact Stern is a lawyer who stands to make millions under this will — which is internally contradictory by its terms, and often does not make sense — harms rather then helps him.
Paternity, particularly when the will is set aside, carries with it serious financial rewards. Just being Executor of the estate, at a commission rate of two and a half percent, may bring in over a million dollars in fees. Then there are the fee possibilities in Trustee commissions and the power to direct and even participate in legal fees in the on-going enormous Federal court proceedings under her late husband’s will. This is not to mention the Guardian-parent’s life style under the guise of support for the child. All of this is aside from the fact that the State of California or the Bahamas may step in and try to claim the monies since there is no heir under the will and maybe even no valid will.
Come to think of it, maybe we should have gotten on that bakery line.