In a Whine-Filled Rant, Alec Baldwin Says Rachel Maddow is a Phony

Actor Alec Baldwin is on the board of People for the American Way (PFAW), the folks behind Right Wing Watch. He is also the guy, who, in his younger days came across as “edgy,” but seems now to leave you wondering if he is borderline unhinged even at the best of times. He seems to be, in other words, the kind of guy tabloids were made for.

In what the New York Daily News rightly calls “a whine-filled New York magazine essay” last night, Baldwin told Joe Hagan that he thinks Rachel Maddow is a phony. Obviously, none of us get to pal around with Rachel Maddow or Alec Baldwin off camera, to see how genuine either of them are, but what we get here is a choice between a guy who seems to be perpetually in trouble for one thing or another, and a woman who does not.

I, for one, who to whom I am giving the benefit of the doubt.

Baldwin’s swings at Maddow seem like pathetically sour-grapes, part of a childish take down of everybody who “wronged” him (at least in his own mind). He starts off by offering us MSNBC’s warts:

I watched MSNBC, prior to working there, very sporadically. Once I had signed a contract with them, I wanted to see more of what they were about. It turned out to be the same shit all day long. The only difference was who was actually pulling off whatever act they had come up with. Morning Joe was boring. Scarborough is neither eloquent nor funny. And merely cranky doesn’t always work well in the morning. Mika B. is the Margaret Dumont of cable news. I liked Chris Jansing a lot. Very straightforward. I like Lawrence O’Donnell, but he’s too smart to be doing that show. Rachel Maddow is Rachel Maddow, the ultimate wonk/dweeb who got a show, polished it, made it her own. She’s talented. The problem with everybody on MSNBC is none of them are funny, although that doesn’t prevent them from trying to be.

Baldwin’s specific problem with Maddow stems from his firing as host of MSNBC’s Up Late with Alec Baldwin. He was canned on November 26, 2013 after he got into it with a photographer and allegedly used an anti-gay slur. As we all know, Maddow is a lesbian.

Once they fired me, a former MSNBC employee I knew emailed me. He said, “You watch now, Phil [Griffin, head of MSNBC] is going to start leaking left and right to bury you.” When I left, “Page Six” was flooded with lies about me. Another told me, regarding the “toxic little queen” comment, that Rachel Maddow was the prime mover in my firing, as she was aghast that I had been hired and viewed me as equivalent to Mel Gibson. Another source told me, “You know who’s going to get you fired, don’t you? Rachel. Phil will do whatever Rachel tells him to do.” I think Rachel Maddow is quite good at what she does. I also think she’s a phony who doesn’t have the same passion for the truth off-camera that she seems to have on the air.

Baldwin complains that people react to him based on what other people say he said, but here he has done the same thing to Rachel Maddow. The actor claims in the same essay that ” I’m self-aware enough to know that I am to blame for some of this” but how true is that? It could be argued that if he was really aware that he was doing these harmful things to his public image and perhaps even torpedoing his own career, that he would stop doing them. He has, in fact, displayed very little self awareness in his New York Magazine whine fest, and his attack on Maddow seems nothing short of gratuitous.

What strikes me as truly sad is that Baldwin ends his “poor me” rant with a comment about a troubled, younger version of himself, Shia LaBeouf, who is also responsible for many of his own problems. LaBeouf wore a bag over his head at a Berlin premier this month that said, “I AM NOT FAMOUS ANYMORE.” Baldwin says, “And there was truly a part of me that felt sorry for him, oddly enough.” I don’t know how sorry we should feel for Baldwin.

College quarterbacks living in a frat culture are red-flagged by the NFL for acting like college guys who live in a frat culture. Heisman trophy winner Johnny “Football” Manziel is a case in point, if you’ve been paying attention to the 2014 Combine in Indianapolis. And here we have Alec Baldwin, at 55 just a couple years younger than me, upset that we don’t accept him acting like he’s a 19-year-old frat boy. He’s a grown man with responsibilities. Johnny Manziel says he is aware that certain behavior is now expected of him and that he knows he must leave his old college behaviors behind. Time will tell if he means it, or if he is just saying what is expected of him. Alec Baldwin has said and done enough to give the public real reason to doubt his own maturity, and this whine-filled essay does not help his image one bit.

Maybe we need to red-flag our celebrities as well. As in sports, some will be character guys and others will not. They reveal themselves in time.

30 Replies to “In a Whine-Filled Rant, Alec Baldwin Says Rachel Maddow is a Phony”

  1. DOCTOR Rachel Maddow is a “phoney”?
    RHODES SCHOLAR Dr. Rachel Maddow is a “phoney”?
    Multiple degrees in journalism and political science Dr. Rachel Maddow is a “phoney”?
    DOUBLE WINNER of the Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism Dr. Rachel Maddow is a “phoney”?
    STILL HAS HER SHOW and BEAT FAUX NEWS Dr. Rachel Maddow is a phoney”?
    O-o-o-o-o…that’s rich!!!
    No, that’s RACHEL–That’s DOCTOR Rachel Maddow to you loser Alec!
    Rachel is one of my SHEROES!!!!

  2. I’ve always enjoyed Baldwin’s work and hoped that perhaps he was a bright man that didn’t suffer fools well. With this last rant he’s proven to me that he’s just another I’ll tempered celebrity man child who is a legend in his own mind.

    I’m done defending you Baldwin. It’s time for you to walk away with the few shreds of dignity you may still have.

  3. This from man who called his own daughter a pig, in an telephone massage. Has always had anger issues, especially when he doesn’t get his way. I watched his show and thought it as the most boring I ever watched.

  4. Please! Did you ever see HIS show? BORING! More self-serving Hollywood pap! His very NEXT project was a “documentary” about him and some other guy trying to raise financial backing in Cannes for a movie.

    Rachel Maddow has more breadth of political and national policy knowledge in her little pinky than Baldwin could ever hope to acquire. MSNBC is not SUPPOSED to be “funny”, it’s supposed to cover the news that mainstream media REFUSE to cover. If I want a comical view of important issues I tune in to Comedy Central’s Colbert and Stewart.

    YES, Baldwin’s interview boiled down to sour grapes over his embarrassing but deserved cancellation of Up Late.

  5. Rachel Maddow has a Doctorate from Oxford. Does anyone know for sure if Alec Baldwin graduated from high school?

  6. Well Alec, I use to like you, but you are really wrong about this one. Rachel is one of the most educated hosts who does her homework on the air. She even comes back and admits she is wrong if need be. How many folks on the air do that on Fox?

  7. His main complaint about the folks at MSNBC is that they’re not funny? If he was making that complaint about the folks at Comedy Central or the cast of Saturday Night Live, we could take him seriously. But it’s not MSNBC’s job to be funny.

    As for Maddow being a “phoney” for only caring about the facts when she’s on air. Even if that’s true, as a viewer of her show, I’m okay with that. Because he’s confirming what we all know: she’s committed to the facts on her show.

  8. I watched his short lived interview show on MSNBC… and it was weak at best.

    He has Charlie Rose syndrome: becoming the interview… while denying the guest an opportunity to speak.

    LONG, detailed questions that were more about HIM, than the guests… I was sooo disappointed that I wasted that much time watching him stroke his ego.

    I was glad to see the show cancelled.

  9. Read the original, not someone else’s interpretation.
    His comment was that she was different in person than she was on the show.
    Perhaps if he had used the term disingenuous there would be less of a reaction.
    He was not talking about her academic credentials.

    He had the advantage of seeing her on screen and off, so maybe his comments should not be categorically dismissed.
    I am not suggesting that he is not rather volatile when someone shoves a camera in his face. I though his comments about TMZ, and The Huffington Post were long overdue.
    I am still a fan of Rachel and recommend her book Drift.
    Patrick Staples

  10. So Alex Baldwin thinks Rachael Maddow isn’t funny enough, well it is a news information format! What I think your looking for Alex is the Daily Show With John Stewart and or the Steven Colbert Show! Or probably more to your frat boy mentality the Tosh.O program! Better still why don’t you just grow up, It’s not always about you!

  11. He suffers from delusions of grandeur. No, you are just a whiner…and I also used to enjoy your up front & at times fearless perspective on some issues. Now you should just stick to written dialogue on a T.V. script. Rachel Maddow is one brave journalist Not a sore loser, sniff sniff!

  12. Alec Baldwin is good at what he does but I think he’s a phony because he doesn’t show the same passion off camera that he does……Turn about is fair play Alec…

  13. Alec Baldwin is a great actor. Period. I believe this interview will be another one of those that he, hopefully, quietly wishes he could take back. He is a person who speaks without thinking and scorches the earth with his rhetoric only to say later, What did I say? I don’t know if he is unhinged or if Rachel is a phony. I also don’t care who he thinks is great on a particular network. You know he’s gone too far when Keith Olbermann, another bombastic and self-serving individual, applauds your rant. Go away Alec and live your life with your nice wife and daughter. I’m not missing anything if you choose to stay quiet.

  14. Thank you for putting the information out there about Rachel Maddow. She is our favorite and quite frankly, I watched Baldwin and it was boring so I am sorry, but he will find his niche sometime, but he can’t find it by trying to tear down others.

  15. That was quite a rant about Alex Baldwin. Rachael does enough rants on her show with anyone disageeing with her liberal views or or should I say rants.IMO. She never comes up for air.

  16. All this is a distraction. Does it really matter if Maddow is a phony? What matters is that Baldwin made a slur about gay people, and that has no place in progressive politics, period. Buh-bye, Alec. You could have had a voice in this little town square. But you chose instead to show your ass. You’ve still got your little website. Now use it and do some good instead of putting yourself ahead of the cause. Either do something useful or STFU.

  17. John,Sigh…Rachel does NOT RANT! She SPEAKS and she speaks the TRUTH because she and her staff RESEARCH and present FACTS unlike your false rant. Get a clue John!

  18. You are going to leave “public” life? Well don’t let the barn door hit you in the mouth….oops, too late.

  19. Rachel was supportive of his show, glad that she no longer had to ‘send us to prison’, the MSNBC programming that followed her on Friday Night.
    I saw Alex’s shows and was so very sad at the empty questions and lack of content.
    Rachel is a brilliant, accurate reporter of facts, I find her to be simply the best that is on TV.
    Alex has a nerve to bring her into his sad memories of a failed opportunity.

  20. Baldwin, your done, toast. STFU! If you can’t inform us about something more than he said she said, STFU.
    Your show failed because of your inability to STFU.
    OWN it, and learn when to STFU.

  21. Rachel Maddow has more talent and class in her little finger than A Balwin will ever have. I am so thankful for her reporting. She is a breath of fresh air in the news world.

  22. I gave Balwdin’s show a chance. It was shockingly bad. I was impressed at some of the animal welfare work he did with Kim Bassinger. On a talk show they told a story of a pregnant pit bull, skin & bones, running up & down an interstate then running off in the woods. They would see it off & on. Kim convinced him they both get in the car & him get out & go after the dog on foot into the woods with a sandwich. He did & was able to rescue her. Seems not long after he was screaming at his 11 yr old daughter calling her a disgusting pig. Kim seemed genuinely afraid of him. He’s a talented comedian. He was great in Outside Providence. But he has an anger management problem he seems unwilling to deal with. I adore Rachel Maddow. He won’t get anywhere dissing her.

  23. M. Harroldson, please have someone proofread your copy. “I, for one, who (sic) to whom I am giving the benefit of the doubt.” does not make sense. I think you meant, “I, for one, KNOW to whom I am giving the benefit of the doubt.”

    Thanks. Good article!

  24. How does ‘whine’ from sour grapes taste? I suspect it would equate to this clown’s attempt at topical subjects.
    Rachel the bomb and Baldwin the dud.

  25. Alec Baldwin, should do what he does, sort’ve well, stick to acting. He likes playing the bully boy, but has tissue thin skin. Politics are not his life’s calling.

  26. The best thing to happen to Alec Baldwin would be to stop watching his shows and to boycott the products he advertises.

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