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Friday, May 26, 2006

Pseudologia Fantastica: A Brief 21st Century History of Résumé Fraud

May 2006: Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo refuses to take responsibility for padding his résumé with false claims that he played professional football and received All-American academic honors at Harvard. An exposé in the Los Angeles Times revealed that Delgadillo never played pro ball or received All American honors. Delgadillo's additional claim that he received a football scholarship to Harvard was refuted by university authorities.

Feb 2006: RadioShack CEO David Edmondson steps down after it is discovered that he did not receive two educational degrees which he listed on his résumé.

Federal Emergency Management Agency chief Michael Brown is jettisoned by the Bush Administration in the aftermath of the Hurricane Katrina disaster. Shortly afterward, serious questions are raised about the integrity of his résumé. Among other things, Brown purported to have been the director of a nursing home that had no record of his employment. He also claimed to have been a distinguished professor at a college where he was only a student

University of Colorado at Boulder Professor Ward Churchill resigns as chair of the ethnic studies department after his longstanding claims of Native American ancestry prove bogus. Churchill also falsely claimed to have served in an elite U.S. Army unit in Vietnam.

U.S. Olympic Committee President Sandra Baldwin resigns after admitting she had never received a doctorate in American Literature – an achievement she listed on her résumé.

Fox News military affairs commentator Lt. Colonel Joseph Cafasso is unmasked as a phony who invented an exciting military résumé "in order to make friends, find work, and . . . find acceptance among people who walk the fringes of Washington's power corridors." In reality, Private First Class Cafasso never saw combat.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Patrick Couwenberg is removed from the bench for falsely claiming to have fought in Vietnam and worked for the CIA. He also told an attorneys group that he attended college on the GI Bill and had a shrapnel wound in his groin. Couwenberg blamed the lies on a mental condition called "pseudologia fantastica.''

Notre Dame football coach George O'Leary resigns after five days on the job, when a background check revealed he didn't have a degree in education from NYU and had never played college football. O'Leary claimed to have earned three letters as a football standout in New Hampshire. In reality, he never even played a game.

Lotus Development Corp. CEO Jeffrey Papows resigns after he's caught fudging his biographical details. Papows claimed to have PhD from Pepperdine (he has a Master's), claimed to hold a black belt in Tae Kwon Do (he was a red belt) and claimed to be an orphan (his parents live in New England).



Anonymous Anonymous said:

rocky sure fits into this group of desperate egomaniacs. can't wait for election day to see the results of his resume fraud

May 25, 2006 8:59 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Uh oh. He only got a scholarship, not a football scholarship. Well, that disqualifies him from being Attorney General. What a scoop!

May 25, 2006 9:59 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Why does Rocky lie so much? I just don't get it. It's not like he has an embarassing resume. What did he think he would gain by making up a professional football career? Is he insecure or just pathlogical?

And what is all this stuff about Team 1600? I am seriously asking those of you who may know him--does this guy REALLY think he is going to be president???

May 25, 2006 10:11 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

when you lie about stuff that is so easy to check out you are not only a little crazy but very stupid

May 25, 2006 10:37 PM  

Anonymous Plugs said:

Rocktard 9:59, like his grand hero, fails to grasp the full scope of his own delusions. The Rocktard Resume scandal consists of three main points:

1) He lied about playing pro ball.

2) He lied about attending Harvard on a football scholarship.

3) He lied about being All American.

Of the three, the claim that he played pro ball is the most serious. Only a small and elite group of men get to play pro ball, and it's no small thing to falsely claim the honor. Especially for a guy who wants to be the top cop, the governor and the President. Such behavior is the mark of an individual who, while projecting the image of success and contentment, is disturbed and inadequate on some deeper level.

I've done some research about resume fraud, and it seems that fakers start inserting false yet exotic details into their biographies at some early stage, in order to stand out from the crowd or mask some deficiency (usually a lack of educational degree).

You can get pretty far with a lie, but problems can arise if the ruse is too successful. Thus, the guy who becomes the CEO of a major company
and attracts national scrutiny, or the formerly obscure professor who becomes a lightning rod for controversy, is eventually hanged in his own noose.

What's odd about the City Attorney's case is that his lies were so unnecessary. Here's a guy who graduated from Harvard and Columbia, got into a prestigious law firm where he came under the wing of Warren "See No Genocide" Christopher, ended up pimping Wal Marts for the Riordan administration and then managed to get himself elected CA. All in all, not too bad a trajectory. But at some point he decided to frost that cake with falsehoods, and now he's bitten off more than he can chew.

The moral, dear Rocktards, is simple. If this man will lie about his own life -- with no good reason -- what won't he lie about?

May 25, 2006 10:40 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Maybe Rocky can apply for a job with FEMA when he losses

May 25, 2006 10:42 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Who is that a picture of?

May 25, 2006 11:57 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Hey, Rocky can be President. He lies and says he knows what's best for America.
Rocky's lies are minor.

May 26, 2006 4:56 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

what are a few small lies - just put them in context - its not like anyone got hurt because of them - leave the poor guy alone

May 26, 2006 6:55 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

As city attorney Rocky is responsible for going after people who lie. That's why this looks so bad. And how can his campaign people not have seen this coming. Didn't they sit him down and say "Rocky if you're hiding anything in your past put it out front right now cause they will find out." NOw Rocky is airing his tv commercials and hving press conferences talking about what he's going to do about gangs. Its already been done so think of something new.

May 26, 2006 7:16 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

The picture is of Ward Churchill; see the article for his lies.

OK guys, Rocky is dead meat. Let's look for someone else to feed upon.

You can put a fork in him; he's done.

May 26, 2006 7:29 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Rocky, your crucible is calling!

Robert Acherman wrote this paragraph on elections and presented it in a speech following his defeat for the State Assembly in 1998. Over the years, he has submitted this paragraph several times to various newspapers.

"Elections are hiring decisions by the people of who they want to represent them in government. Campaigns are like the crucible where the metal is melted and all of the impurities come out; the electorate relies on the candidates to define themselves and their opponents because they do not have the time to do the research themselves. Election day is like purgatory; either the voters elevate the candidate to office or they send him down in
flames. Politics is the kind of business where people can die many deaths and come back. We need good people to run for office."
-Robert Acherman

May 26, 2006 8:25 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Rocky: you are the Chris Arrellano of the AGs race. Rocky probably couldn't even beat Two Ton Monica for School Board at this point.

May 26, 2006 8:50 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

whether you are a 1st team, 2nd team, 3rd team, or honorable mention All American, YOU ARE STILL CONSIDERED AN ALL AMERICAN. There is no story here.

May 26, 2006 11:36 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

moron - he said he played professional football - never played a down - said he received a football scholarship from harvard - he did not. If these aren't lies I don't know what is.

May 26, 2006 1:53 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


you forgot about the Bush operative at NASA.

May 26, 2006 3:20 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Oh sure, football's the most important thing about Rocky's candidacy. Maybe you bird brains will support an NFL team in LA--the voters won't understand what you're crowing about.

May 26, 2006 7:14 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

I don't understand how some of you are taking this so lightly. It's not the content of the lies that people are taking issue with, it's the fact that they are lies.

May 26, 2006 8:06 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Who cares. Rocky's a lawyer, not a priest. I want my AG to kick ass, not contemplate his navel. Even if he wasn't a pro football player, Rocky's more of a fighter than the failed seminarian he opposes.

May 26, 2006 8:46 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

rocky is a complete fraud as a fighter, lawyer and politician - even his name is from a phony fighter from a movie.

May 26, 2006 8:58 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

I love how what used to be vices are now all diseases. "Lying" has become "pseudologia fantastica."
What's next? Maybe you won't be able to fire people who lie on their resumes under the ADA. After all, maybe an inability to tell the truth is simply a disease.

May 26, 2006 9:04 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Rocky's a fighter?

He sure falls on his back and kicks open his legs for those slumlords and billboard companies.

There's no way to smooth over that lying bastard's reputation now. Nice try, though.

May 26, 2006 10:44 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


May 27, 2006 7:33 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Put that fork up your ass. Rocky may be bloody but he's going to keep on fighting until Election Day.

May 27, 2006 10:36 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

LA Times Poll released today:
Angeledes and Westly in a "tossup"; Brown "trouncing" Delgadillo:

"Phil Angelides has erased rival Steve Westly's lead in the Democratic primary contest for governor, making the race a tossup as the two dash into the final 10 days of the campaign, a new Los Angeles Times poll has found.

The lack of a clear front-runner ensures a fiercely competitive fight in the closing phase of a match already notable for scathing character attacks.

If the June 6 election were held today, likely Democratic primary voters would favor Angelides over Westly, 37% to 34%. That is a statistical tie, given the poll's margin of sampling error: plus or minus 5 percentage points...

In the Democratic primary for attorney general, the poll found Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown trouncing Los Angeles City Atty. Rocky Delgadillo, 60% to 27%.

Likely voters in the primary are much more familiar with Brown, a former California governor and presidential candidate: 67% hold a favorable impression of him, but 64% know so little about Delgadillo that they have no opinion about him."

May 27, 2006 11:11 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Don't feel too bad, Rocktards. Remember that, in the movie, Rocky loses the first fight. Although, if the fight between Apollo Creed and Rocky Balboa was an election, it would have ended up something like 51-49. Looks like Brown is gonna give Rocky the whuppin' of a lifetime. Is it too late to get a refund on all of that TV time?

May 27, 2006 4:44 PM  

Anonymous Albino Saint said:

Don't feel too bad, Rocktards. Remember that, in the movie, Rocky loses the first fight. Although, if the fight between Apollo Creed and Rocky Balboa was an election, it would have ended up something like 51-49. Looks like Brown is gonna give Rocky the whuppin' of a lifetime. Is it too late to get a refund on all of that TV time?

May 27, 2006 4:47 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Ever wonder who has been minding the shop while Rocktard and his Team 1600 are out collecting campaign contributions? Someone with authority had better tune in and note that the office is not staffed or trained to wage huge civil lawsuits against powerhouse companies--it's one thing to smile and spit soundbites at a press conference; it's another to survive the war that will follow. The former Criminal Division has seriously strayed from its charter responsibilities. Take note City Council. Maybe the new head of Criminal needs a copy of the Charter? Maybe Rocky, too? And Rockettes, wise up, tune in, and restrain your generals before it's too late and you're buried by the likes of Coke and the big firms you are tackling. Or will you be contracting with O'Melveny to get you out of the mess you are creating by filing the mega-lawsuits? Clever.....

May 28, 2006 4:11 PM  

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