Martha's Rise, Fall: What Does It Mean?

TINA BROWN: No, I think she's a perfectionist about herself. And I think that she holds herself to very high standards. And her whole company, in a sense, is about commodifying high standards. So, the question here is, is this about Martha herself believing that she didn't do this, or Martha feeling that it's just lethal for her to, in a sense, accept that she did in fact stumble? So, I don't know. I mean, I'd like to think that -this will come out somehow better for her because I don't think what she did is very terrible. I think the cover-up has been very unfortunate.

TED KOPPEL: So, theoretically, better than to go through the case, go through the trial, hopefully to be found not guilty at the end of it and then to be able to say, not a smudge on my, on my reputation?

TINA BROWN: Well, I think that at the end of it, what she must have learned from this is there's so much vengeance out there for any kind of success. In a way, she should have perhaps shown a little earlier, a little bit more, you know, willingness to kind of accept humility a bit. You know, she was a little bit, shall we say, Olympian in the last few years.

TED KOPPEL: We're just about out of time. But let me, in place of a question, throw a name out and just get the visceral reaction from each of you. Tina, you first. Leona Helmsley.

TINA BROWN: The queen of mean.

TED KOPPEL: Yeah, but I mean, in this context.

TINA BROWN: I think that she really is the Wicked Witch of the West. And I think she has been demonized, too. But I think she's a far more severe case of bad news.

TED KOPPEL: Jeffrey?

JEFFREY TOOBIN: There's no, there's no compensating factor to Leona Helmsley. Martha Stewart created jobs, created this enormous business. And also, you know, for all that a lot of people dislike her, and we've discussed it, millions of people love this woman and watch her television show everyday and really care about her. So -there's another side of the ledger to Martha Stewart which there really isn't, as far as I can tell, about Leona Helmsley.

TED KOPPEL: And it's probably appropriate to end on at least the one rare positive note here. So, thank you all very much. Tina Brown, Jeffrey Toobin, Naomi Wolf. Good of you to join us.

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