The return of the (former) mansion chef!

FRIDAY, JULY 5, 2013

Maddow just isn’t real honest: Rachel Maddow doesn’t care for Virginia governor Bob McDonnell.

We wouldn’t vote for the fellow ourselves! But Maddow really doesn’t like him. And when a pol gets on Maddow’s list, pretty much anything goes.

On June 22, we marveled at Maddow’s apparent dishonesty concerning the state of Virginia’s mansion chef—the guy who prepares the food in the governor’s mansion.

To review that report, just click here.

In fact, the mansion chef in question was the state’s former mansion chef. He had left his post more than a year ago, in the midst of an apparent scandal.

Later, the former mansion chef had been indicted on four felony counts (embezzlement). And yes, these facts were highly relevant to the story Maddow told on her program in June.

You see, the former mansion chef has made accusations against McDonnell and his children as part of his attempt to defend himself against those embezzlement charges. Just to complete the record, the former chef has been convicted of embezzlement before, in the year 2000.

Back in June, Maddow forgot to mention this colorful background when she recounted the (former) chef’s colorful charges against McDonnell. After all, the claims are aimed at someone Maddow hates—and at his ratty children! Why spoil the fun by mentioning the circumstances in which these charges were made?

Whatever! On Tuesday night, Maddow burned her program’s first 19 minutes with another long, time-killing harangue about McDonnell’s perfidy. And wouldn’t you know it! Just like that, the mansion chef was back!

To watch that segment, click this.

This time, though, your Daily Howler was getting results! This time, Maddow actually mentioned the fact that the mansion chef in question is the former mansion chef. She even said that his charges are being made because he’s “under indictment for embezzlement”—although she listed his charges all over again before she offered that background note in a rather fleeting manner.

Maddow just isn’t real honest. McDonnell is in a lot of trouble for certain financial transactions. But as Maddow burned her 19 minutes, she folded in all the silly stuff she trumpeted a few weeks back. The body wash was back, as was the colonics treatment and, of course, the nasal spray. Most significantly:

As she runs these matters together, note her highly skillful use of the slippery word “reportedly:”
MADDOW (7/2/13): But now did you hear about the stretch Hummer limo thing? The stretch Hummer limo is the latest thing in the Bob McDonnell story. The latest thing that he and his family reportedly took as part of what he thinks he is entitled to take because he is governor of Virginia. Every day it’s a new thing.

But here’s what has been reported so far. This is just what he has not denied.

The stretch Hummer limo that he took, it was white. He took rides in a stretch Hummer limo from his daughter’s church wedding to the reception, two hours or so worth of rides for all the wedding guests in the stretch Hummer.

Also a Ferrari, a loaner Ferrari for Bob McDonnell to drive. Apparently, it was also white.

A $10,000 Oscar de la Renta suede jacket for the wife. A Louise Vuitton hand bag, presumably also for the wife. Two pairs of designer lady shoes, a designer dress.

A liver cleansing gastrointestinal cleanse product. Yes. I don’t know.

Vitamins for Bob McDonnell’s dog. He took dog vitamins.

Body wash. A wedding dress for the governor’s daughter.

A chicken dinner for the wedding that cost $15,000. For the record, we do not know if this was the exact chicken preparation from the dinner. This is for your reference only.

Also, he took deodorant on the taxpayers’ dime.

Energy drinks that are called Boost. I’ve never had one.

An engraved $6000 Rolex watch. A stay at a lakeside Virginia vacation home. Breath-freshening strips. Dry cleaning for the McDonnell children’s clothing. Sunscreen.

Nasal spray. Something the Washington Post called “sleep-inducing elixirs.”

Also cash—what the Washington Post described today as tens of thousands of dollars of payments to the McDonnell family.

That is at least a partial list of things that the Republican governor of Virginia, Bob McDonnell, has either reportedly charged to the taxpayers of Virginia by just taking them from the executive mansion, even after he was warned that he’s supposed to pay for his own body wash, himself—

He’s either taken the stuff for himself and his family and charged the taxpayers of Virginia for it, or he has taken the stuff as gifts since he has been governor—some of those gifts disclosed and some of them not.
Some of those matters are large and serious. Some of those matters are pointless and silly and represent the total clowning at which this clown excels. In the meantime, did you notice the key role played by the word “reportedly” and a few variants?


In that long and loving harangue, did Maddow list a bunch of things the governor actually took? Or did she list a bunch of things the governor “reportedly” took?

There’s a big difference between the two claims! But as we all learned in the Clinton days, when slippery hustlers use that word, it lets them say almost anything.

Slippery hustlers can con you good through use of that helpful word. In this instance, what is Maddow actually charging?

Let’s take one example: Did the Washington Post report that McDonnell has actually taken “tens of thousands of dollars of payments to the McDonnell family?” Or has McDonnell “reportedly” taken that money?

Maddow seems to tell the story both ways in her presentation. Just for the record, this is what the Washington Post actually said about those “tens of thousands of dollars of payments to the McDonnell family:”
HELDERMAN (7/3/13): Williams paid $15,000 for the catering at the 2011 wedding of McDonnell's daughter. Authorities are also investigating whether Williams provided tens of thousands of dollars in additional payments to members of the McDonnell family, as well as gifts of high-end clothing, according to people familiar with the inquiry.
In her bill of particulars, Maddow lumps body wash and nasal spray in with $15,000 gifts. She also lists “cash—what the Washington Post described today as tens of thousands of dollars of payments to the McDonnell family.”

In fact, the Washington Post only said that authorities are investigating whether such payments occurred. And the Post sourced that claim extremely vaguely, to unnamed “people.”

From listening to Maddow’s slippery screed, did viewers have any way of knowing that that’s where the matter stands?

Maddow just isn’t real honest, especially when it comes to pols she despises. She also treats these matters like games. To Maddow, it’s fun to clown about body wash—and clown about body wash she does! In the process, she treats her liberal viewers like fools, which increasingly seems to be the way we like to be treated.

Are we all dittoheads now?

Maddow forgot to mention something else—McDonnell’s explanation for that $15,000 gift. But first, this is the passage where Maddow engineered the return of the (former) mansion chef:
MADDOW (continuing directly): And this is on top of the allegations from the former executive chef at the governor’s mansion who has produced a whole other lists of things he says the McDonnell family took for their own use from the mansion at taxpayers` expense.

Things like pots and pans that were taken out of the mansion and given away. Pots and pans! Liquor.

The chef, who is under indictment for embezzlement, gets his day in court next week on July 8th. So mark that day on your calendar. We’ll hear more from the chef then.
Your Daily Howler keeps getting results! This time, Maddow actually says that she is citing the former executive chef. After listing his charges all over again, she even tells us rubes, in passing, that the chef is saying these things as part of his embezzlement indictment.

He “gets his day in court next week,” she hopefully says. Truly, Maddow’s a clown.

McDonnell has accepted large sums of money from people with business before the state. This is a serious matter in Virginia, though it’s a bit underwhelming on a national basis.

But Maddow loves to pour it on with pols she doesn’t like—and she loves to clown. The body wash and deodorant get all mixed in with the serious stuff—and she mixes things which are known to be facts with things which haven’t even been charged.

The word “reportedly” helps her do that, although Maddow goes beyond the license provided by that slick term.

Maddow just isn’t real honest. In the case of the former mansion chef, she folded in the basic facts she disappeared in last month's report, without ever correcting herself for that previous report. But don’t worry! Before long, Rachel Maddow will pose herself beneath her “Department of Corrections” sign. She will give us the standard spiel about how much she believes in correcting herself, even though it hurts.

We will simply sit there and take it. In comments, we liberals will repeat this talking-point for her.

Rachel Maddow just isn’t real honest. More and more, it’s becoming clear that this is the way we liberals want “news” to be.


  1. Astonishing the way this is done, but deception is what Maddow is all about.

  2. A dishonesty is a dishonesty by any other name, but Maddow's dishonesty is of the kindergarten variety when compared to Hannity, O'Reilly, Limbaugh, Savage, Colter, Medved(sp) and a host of others who make a living off dishonesty and misdirected anger.

    1. Your post doesn't say anything, gcwall. Really.

      Except, maybe, "Waaahhh! Leave Rachel alone. Talk about these other folks."

      You want to claim it's about magnitude and perspective? No. Because your post brings neither of those into focus.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Maddow's "style" is to avoid getting directly to the point. She spins drawn out yarns. It's a framework that easily allows her to play fast and loose with facts.

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