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Actress Lori Loughlin, center, and daughters Olivia Jade, left, and Isabella Giannulli, who both attend the University of Southern California.

Up the creek without a palette: The school admissions scandal

By Saturday, Mar 30, 2019 Viewpoints 1

For another Edge report on the college admissions scandal and how local higher education  administrators and student counselors have responded, click HERE.

I’m going to let you in on one of America’s deep, dark secrets: The most underserved and criticized population in these United States is filthy rich white kids.

We feed and house the poor, Headstart them, antipoverty them, then sprinkle in some affirmative action.

But filthy rich white kids have to depend on their filthy rich white parents. You might as well throw them to the wolves. Renowned social commentator Alexander Schmidlap IV, author of the highly successful blog “Richly Deserved,” suggests that “filthy rich white parents, obsessed with how things look and impressing their peers” can’t be trusted with their children. “I’d say we ought to take them away, but I don’t really know where we’d put them,” Schmidlap IV told Raising Filthy Rich White Kids Magazine. “And with my two Rottweilers,” Schmidlap admitted, “I don’t have room at my place.”

Who knew we’d see evidence of Schmidlap’s analysis play out on the front pages of our newspapers? Witness the recent scandal of college admissions. If you’ve been on a Caribbean island and out of touch, drinking rum, here’s how the Washington Post described it: “The Justice Department on Tuesday charged 50 people — including two television stars — with participating in a multimillion-dollar bribery scheme that enabled privileged students with lackluster grades to attend prestigious colleges and universities.

“The allegations included cheating on entrance exams and bribing college officials to say certain students were athletic recruits when those students were not in fact athletes, officials said. Numerous schools were targeted, including Georgetown University, Yale University, Stanford University, the University of Texas, the University of Southern California and UCLA, among others.”

The Post continues: “Court documents allege the man at the epicenter of the scandal, William “Rick” Singer, has been helping parents get their children into selective schools this way since at least 2011. While the criminal complaint identifies about three dozen children who allegedly were fraudulently admitted, Singer reportedly bragged to one parent that he had facilitated 761 admissions through ‘side doors’ — his term for the scheme.”

Former Georgetown University tennis coach Gordon Ernst on March 25, leaving Boston Federal Court. Photo:Steven Senne, Associated Press

Some examples: “Prosecutors have alleged Singer paid former Georgetown tennis coach Gordon Ernst more than $2.7 million in bribes from 2012 to 2018. In exchange, prosecutors said, Ernst designated at least 12 applicants as tennis recruits, including some who did not play tennis competitively.”

Or this from the New York Post: “To help the son of one co-defendant, California equity firm executive William McGlashan Jr., get into the University of Southern California, Singer said they would create a bogus athletic profile for the teen … ‘I’ll pick a sport and we’ll do a picture of him, or … we’ll put his face on a picture, whatever,’ Singer allegedly told McGlashan. ‘I’ve already done that a million times.’

“When McGlashan volunteered photos of his son playing lacrosse, Singer shot it down, because USC doesn’t field a lacrosse team. Singer later left a voicemail message for McGlashan, intercepted by a federal wiretap, in which he laid out his plan to pass McGlashan’s son off to the USC football team as a special-teams whiz — even though his high school didn’t even have a football squad. ‘I’m gonna make him a kicker/punter and they’re gonna walk him through with football,’ Singer told McGlashan. ‘I’ll get a picture and figure out how to Photoshop and stuff … so we’ll put a bunch of stuff about that on his profile, and we should be in pretty good shape to get that done.’”

Sadly, liberals and the press have made these kids out to be rotten. Like it’s not OK to be lackluster. Pointing fingers at the humiliated victims in this story. Like Olivia Jade. But she knows what’s what and is not inclined to be the fall girl. As the New York Post headline put it: “Olivia Jade Giannulli blames her parents for ‘ruining her life.’”

Damn straight. Olivia Jade was making a pretty penny as a super-successful influencer, influencing her 1,958,386 YouTube subscribers.Pointing out to poor kids what they were missing. Like what to wear and when to wear it, and how and when to tan. Posting videos for her fellow rich white kid peeps about what they ought to be buying if they wanted to stay totally dope.Inspired, because “I have a strong passion for makeup and fashion and I love sharing my passion with all of you guys here on youtube.”

Image courtesy Instagram

Before SAT-Gate, Olivia Jade was vlogging her makeup routines, living the good life with the help of Sephora, TRESemmé and Estée Lauder. Her dorm room was filled with treasure thanks to her work repping Amazon Prime Student. Her teeth were straight thanks to Smile Direct Club.

Too good to be true. Enter TV star Mom, Lori Loughlin, she of “Full House” and billion-dollar Dad, Mossimo Giannulli, who, according to his company, rose to fashion success“by blending its surf, sport, urban and street heritage into a contemporary fashion brand with a broad and credible appeal.” So successful, “the brand enjoys a unique universal acceptance, worn by everyone from kids, college students and their parents, to hard-core surfers.” Given her DNA, you’d think filthy rich white scion Olivia Jade would get major props by so successfully following in their footsteps. But no. Mom and Dad decided to buy/bribe Olivia Jade and sister Bella a USC education. How about we call it parental sabotage?

Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli. Photo courtesy LACMA

According to Paige Gawle of Entertainment Tonight Online: Olivia Jade “the 19-year-old YouTube vlogger is ‘really angry with her parents because she told them she did not want to go to college and she was pushed,’ the source says.”

You heard it, pushed! So how about we blame the pushers, not the pushee? And does it really make it any better if a parent pushes his/her filthy rich white kid off such a prosperous ledge?

Gawle has more about Olivia Jade: “‘She has been passionate about her career and wanted to work and was doing well but that wasn’t enough,’ the source continues. ‘Her parents said she would have to juggle college and her career. Now she’s devastated because everything she built imploded before her eyes … She feels they ruined everything,’ the source adds.”

What kind of filthy rich white parent makes their filthy rich white kid juggle career and college?

You can’t really appreciate how successful Olivia Jade has been until you check out her YouTube video blog. Like episode “FAMILY TIME! DAILY VLOG 2” of Oct. 19, 2017. Turns out 661,922 folks watched Olivia Jade make her breakfast, go out for sushi for dinner and, in her Must See TV conclusion, watched while she put on a Sephoraface mask for bedtime.

Or how about the 915,614 people who took part in her Feb. 5, 2019, vlog titled “spend time w me at college! (friends, parties, class, etc.).” Viewers were treated to an Olivia Jade far more philosophical than usual. Now at the University of Southern California, she bravely admits she’s come to realize that she’s just so bored with her style. No slouch, she quickly realized the solution: She needed to go online and shop, which offered the perfect opportunity to promote the Olivia Jade Sephora Palette, available online.

Image courtesy elitedaily.com

I’m betting you’ll be as moved as I was when I read what Olivia Jade had to say about her makeup collection: “I have been working on this palette for a year and I still wake up every morning in complete disbelief that I got to create such a stunning product with Sephora Collection. I am honored and proud to have had such an incredible opportunity and learning experience and without the support of my subscribers, this would have never happened … We put so much thought into each shade and I cannot wait for the world to get their hands on it! It truly is the only highlight I’ve been wearing for the past 7 months.”

Which, by the way, has gotten rave reviews. Here’s Theresa Massony of elitedaily,com: “Coming to Sephora’s website and the Sephora app on Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2018, this latest drop from Olivia Jade and Sephora Collection will retail for $28. Let me preface all of this by saying the palette won’t be available for long, so if you like what you see below, hop on it fast before the other hungry beauty lovers with gift cards snag it first.

Photo courtesy Sephora Collection/Theresa Massony

“The palette itself consists of six large pans of pressed powder — five different highlighter shades and one bronze shade, to be exact. The highlighters range as light as a white shade with gold flecks and as bright as a true yellow gold shimmer, while the bronzer is a warm shade of brown, almost like a burnt sienna or a cinnamon. The overall color scheme feels incredibly warm, which is a breath of fresh air during a chilling winter where I can barely feel my limbs and also my soul.”

Theresa Massony is more than enthusiastic: “If you take a peek through Olivia Jade’s … Instagram account, you’ll see all of these shades are right up her warm, sun-kissed alley. Basically, you’ll rarely catch the 19-year-old influencer and daughter of actress Lori Loughlin without a sharp contour or a highlight bright enough to blind you, and with this new release, she’s made sure you won’t be caught without either of those things as well.”

Olivia Jade in her dorm room at the University of Southern California. Photo: Michael Simon/startraksphoto.com

But back to the “spend time w me at college!” episode. How lucky are we to watch as Olivia Jade and her friends get ready for a pajama-themed frat party. Thoughtful Olivia Jade admits in this episode she “kinda just want to show you guys behind the scenes of college and you met some of my best friends and who I spend every day of my life with and who I’m living with next year and they’re literally the best girls in the world … because anytime I do a college video people are like why are you only showing you going out or getting ready for a party, like it’s not only about partying, and before I went to college I was super naïve and ignorant and dumb, and I was like, I’m not going to college cause I want an education. I’m going to meet people and be social and partying, and like that’s literally the dumbest thing you can say, especially when I have the opportunity to have such a good education.

“So it’s not that I don’t show the education part because I don’t care, because now that I’m here, it’s like really interesting and I love it and that’s why I still here, but um I just don’t think it’s that fun to film a whole college class as opposed to you guys seeing the social part of it, just watching-wise, so yeah, that’s why I focused on friends and partying, like that … but if you guys want me to take you to more classes or introduce you to teachers I guess I could do that.”

Image via YouTube

And ever so quickly transitioning from confessional to some really important fashion advice: “you want to see my shower kit … self-tan … I always use the same thing My Loving Tan Deluxe Mousse Ultra Dark and there‘s a Loving Tan Mitt that comes with it, and then I just put moisturizer on my elbows … I usually just sleep in it – it tells you to take it off in six hours but I’ve left it on for twelve hours and it’s never made a difference for me, so that’s basically it for this vlog. Thanks guys so much for watching. I love you all and see you next time.”

Fact is Sephora and TRESemmé and Smile Direct and Amazon and Clinique and Smashbox put their money where their mouths are, convinced that this was one filthy rich white kid who spoke for her generation of filthy rich white kids. One might reasonably say she was a national treasure—until the haters.

Imagine the great price these filthy rich white kids have had to pay. Paige Gawle walks us slowly through the collegiate minefield of their suffering: “Olivia and Isabella ‘Bella’ Giannulli are having a tough time … suffering in their own ways from the fallout of their parents’ decisions,” a source tells ET more than a week after Lori Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, were among the 50 people charged in the scam … Court documents allege that the couple paid bribes totaling $500,000 to have their kids designated as recruits to the University of Southern California crew team, despite not actually participating in the sport.”

Really, the crew team? Rowing in unison? Here’s a kid who should have been paid by USC to teach influencing.

Thank God, as Gawle alerts us: “Bella and Olivia have a very tightknit group of friends who have been there to support them,” the source says. ‘They’ve needed that support because they’re being attacked at every turn’ … Olivia, meanwhile, is ‘so embarrassed she doesn’t even want to go out …”

What has Taylor Swift taught us? “And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate.” Talk about your hate:

Image courtesy Instagram

Now, as Sophie Lewis of CBS News tells us: “Olivia Jade Giannulli is starting to feel the backlash over her parents’ alleged involvement in the massive college admissions scandal. Amid a flurry of criticism and #boycottsephora tweets, Sephora is ending its relationship with Giannulli.”

Fair-weather friend Sephora issued this statement: “After careful review of recent developments, we have made the decision to end the Sephora Collection partnership with Olivia Jade, effective immediately.”

No more free face masks.

Talk about knocking someone when they’re down. “TRESemmé is no longer working with Olivia Jade Giannulli,” a TRESemmé spokesperson told CBS News.

And now thanks to Gawle, our erstwhile chronicler of pain, you can understand why the thoughtful, positive Olivia Jade, who just a short time ago was thinking about taking us to class, along with her sister, is “afraid of being kicked out of school and will likely not return on their own.” Meanwhile Mom Lori and Dad Mossimo are currently each out of jail on a $1 million bond.

Former University of Southern California senior associate athletic director Donna Heinel leaves Boston Federal Court after her March 25 arraignment. Photo: Scott Eisen, Getty Images

Just maybe USC, which is currently looking to replace Donna Heinel, its former senior associate athletics director, and Ali Khosroshahin, its former women’s soccer head coach, and Laura Janke, its former assistant coach of women’s soccer, and Jovan Vavic, its former water polo head coach, will stick up for Olivia Jade and Bella. According to USA Today, “The University of Southern California is making it clear that sisters Olivia Jade and Isabella Giannulli remain enrolled at the college following investigations over a nationwide college admission scandal.”

Yale University women’s soccer coach Rudy Meredith. Photo: Doug Engle/Ocala Star-Banner

In the interests of accuracy, I must admit that there is always an exception to the rule, and so we must add a filthy rich Asian girl to our filthy rich white kid club. Sadly, she will forever be called Yale Applicant No. 1 by her peers. The Los Angeles Times reported: “The family of a person identified as only “Yale Applicant One” paid Singer $1.2 million, including $900,000 into his charitable organization. Singer, according to the documents, was introduced to the applicant’s family in November 2017 by a financial advisor. The girl’s father told Singer he wanted to make a ‘donation’ for his daughter’s application. Singer sent the girl’s admissions application to Yale women’s soccer coach Rudy Meredith, along with her art portfolio, and told Meredith he would change the materials from art to soccer.

On Nov. 17, Singer sent the coach a fabricated athletic profile for the student, making her the co-captain of an elite southern California soccer club. Singer then got Laura Janke, a former assistant coach at USC, to create the phony credentials, according to documents. “Need a soccer pic probably Asian girl,” prosecutors say Singer wrote in the email. “Jr National Development team in China … we saying she got hurt this spring so was not recruited til now.” At the start of the new year, Singer sent Meredith, who had coached the Yale soccer team for more than two decades, a check for $400,000, drawn on the Key Worldwide Foundation charity account.

Image courtesy UCLA

Then there’s Lauren Isackson. UCLA men’s soccer coach Jorge Salcedo resigned in the wake of his alleged involvement in accepting $200,000 in bribes to help enroll two players using fake athletic profiles, an athletic department official confirmed Thursday … One of those students, Lauren Isackson, was part of the women’s soccer team in 2017 despite no previous experience, according to prosecutors. Her parents have been implicated as part of a wide-ranging scheme to enroll the children of privileged families into top-tier universities across the country.

The New York Times explained how another part of the Singer scam worked: “he arranged for students to take their SAT or ACT exams at special sites where he had bribed the proctors on those tests to basically correct the student’s answers. He talked about how he encouraged the parents to get their children tested for disabilities so that they could have more time to complete the exam. He talked about how he would sometimes even have a man — an adult — pose as the students at the test centers that he, quote unquote, ‘controlled,’ and that adult would take the test for the kids. And this guy was so good at it, he could basically get any score that they wanted.”

I think Republicans and Democrats alike can agree that the SAT tests are an abomination foisted on us by Satan and his College Board minions. Think I’m kidding, don’t you? This is how the College Board explains one of its tests: “Command of Evidence – The Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section and the SAT Essay ask students to interpret, synthesize, and use evidence found in a wide range of sources. These sources include informational graphics, such as tables, charts, and graphs, as well as multiparagraph passages in the areas of literature and literary nonfiction, the humanities, science, history and social studies, and on topics about work and career.

“For every passage or pair of passages students will see during the Reading Test, at least one question will ask students to identify which part of the text best supports the answer to the previous question. In other instances, students will be asked to find the best answer to a question by pulling together information conveyed in words and graphics.” Quite frankly, just reading this scares me.

The University of Southern California in Los Angeles. Photo: Rosette Rago/New York Times

How about we take a few minutes to try out the walk-a-mile-in-their-shoes concept? Imagine you’re a filthy rich white kid, lackluster enough that you don’t really have a clue what that Charles Dickens guy was trying to say when he wrote: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity …” Especially because, in these the days of Instagram and tweetstorms and Betsy DeVos, the less-than-brilliant head of The U.S. Department of Education, who in their right mind still believes in incredulity?

So, really, why should filthy rich white Moms and Dads be forced to pay some educational hustler to stick their kid’s head on the body of someone rowing crew or playing soccer or tennis or high-jumping? Or pay for fake SAT scores?

I mean, one of the God-given benefits of being filthy rich and white is that you’ve got an extra half a million. So how about we eliminate the crooked middle Singer man entirely and the corrupt coaches and corrupt SAT test monitors and establish a simple Rich Kid/Poor Kid Exchange? Filthy rich white Moms and Dads buy entrance for their lackluster filthy rich white kids into USC and Yale and Georgetown and the schools use the money for scholarships for really smart poor kids, white and of color. End of story.

And while we’re at it, can we all take a moment to pray for the filthy rich white kids who’ve paid the ultimate price of humiliation? And offer a special prayer for Olivia Jade, now up the creek without a palette.


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