To coincide with our annual OC Scariest People issue, behold the 2014 entry into the Bob Dornan Scary OC Hall of fame…Orange County Register owner Aaron Kushner!
Has anyone in Orange County history ever had a more dramatic, sudden fall from grace than Aaron Kushner? A bit over two years ago, the Boston millionaire strode into town announcing he was going to save the Reg from the newspaper industry's death throes by staffing up and fattening the paper. And he stuck to his word, garnering national media praise and being hailed as a journalism Jesus at an Orange County Press Club mixer in November 2012.
Just four months later, the Kush missed a delivery payment, and he told his investigative team that he didn't believe in comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable. And that's where the REAL fun began.
You can find all of Kushner's many, many sins at our OC Register Death Watch column–many. All we'll add right now is that when Kushner finally leaves back to Beantown–and he absolutely will, given he never brought over his family to a county he professed to love and reputedly still lives in the same fancy Newport Beach hotel suite he first set his tent in–he'll join Frank McCourt and Dave Henderson as the most loathed Bostonians to ever pass through Southern California. And Kushner deserves extra scorn for building up the hopes of hundreds of Register employees with his lofty, empty rhetoric, then leveling the paper to virtually the same scorched Earth Grand Avenue was before he came into town–except at least back then, the Reg owned their own building and delivered their paper on time.
Mitigating factor: Our 2012 coverage of Kushner has won us a slew of awards, and we're counting on our 2014 coverage to do the same…HA!
1998: Dr. Bernard Rappaport (deceased), former head of the county's Children and Youth Services
1999: Gloria Matta Tuchman, vendida Santa Ana schoolteacher behind the anti-bilingual education Proposition 227
2000: Jim Silva, former county supervisor and state assemblymember, eternal dope
2001: Lou Sheldon, director of the Traditional Values Coalition
2002: The confirmed offspring of Bob Dornan
2003: Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackaukas
2004: Larry Agran, boss of Irvine and the Great Park
2005: Inductee lost in one of our many website revamps
2006: Greg Haidl, convicted rapist
2007: Catholic Diocese of Orange Bishop Tod D. Brown (awarded retroactively for his pedo-priest protecting ways)
2008: Disgraced, felonious, adulterous ex-Sheriff Mike Carona (awarded retroactively for the whole indictment thing)
2009: Santa Ana Mayor-for-Life Miguel Pulido (awarded retroactively for a career that saw him go from Aztlanista to the supreme vendido in Orange County–and in a county where Republican Mexicans have a group called the Hispanic 100, that's saying something)
2010: Orly Taitz, Birther Queen supreme
2011: Barbara Coe, Walking Cigarette/Anti-immigrant godmother
2012: Orange County Register readers
2013: Dana Rohrabacher, slob congressman