Sumner Redstone is the divorced, 92 year old billionaire who owns a controlling interest in both CBS and Viacom. His relationships with two much younger women were profiled in Vanity Fair earlier this year. Since the publication of the article, and likely because of it, he has severed his contacts with both women. One of the women, Manuela Herzner, filed suit this week claiming that he lacked mental capacity to remove her as the attorney in fact under his health care power of attorney. His attorneys have naturally responded that the litigation is a farce, meritless, and a despicable invasion of his privacy.
Three points of some relevance:
1. The battle is not really about Ms. Herzner controlling the medical decisions for Mr. Redstone – it is about throwing down a marker about his mental capacity in case he revises his will to leave her out of it.
2. Far be it from me to call a man with two (!) girlfriends who are 40 and 50 years younger than him mentally unfit especially when he questions their motives after they gloat about their relationship in Vanity Fair.
3. A simple test of his mental faculties could be whether he somehow finds Stephen Colbert funny and a worthy successor to David Letterman as host of CBS’s “Late Show.”