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This question may have a simple answer, but if so I don’t know it — so maybe one of you will. Who is this guy?
More on the above images — stills clipped (and and in the case of the inset, cropped, but otherwise adjusted only for brightness and contrast) from a video appearing below — momentarily; let’s first consider why we want to know the answer.
According to John Fields over at Pedrozaville, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher released a YouTube video this past Saturday purporting to give the lie to Scott Moxley’s story of his trashing his house rental, leading to a bout of claim and counterclaim with his landlord, Robert Polyniak. Here’s the (soundless) video:
Fields notes that Jon Kobylt (of KFI’s “John and Ken”) had jumped onto Moxley’s story, leading Rohrabacher to call in and dominate the ensuing hour. Crazy Dana
mentioned the video, how to find it and also pointed to his Facebook page for a number of stills that would disprove Moxley’s claims and contradict the photos from the first OC Weekly piece. It was a terrible interview as both Kobylt and Rohrabacher fought for the microphone, but by the end Kobylt’s adrenalin was drained and he conceded their was no evident explanation for the competing photographs (Rohrabacher said Polyniak’s were “doctored”) which could either cost a 13-term Congressman his next election, or R. Scott Moxley his reputation.
Note that our own Gericault (who is no fan of Rohrabacher) pointed us to the video in this past Weekend Open Thread, saying that Dana was calling us liars. (That’s not strictly true: he’s calling Polyniak a liar and Moxley gullible — and at most he’s calling us rumormongers, which I suppose has merit, but when one comes up with a great nickname for a politician like “Staina Rentalbutcher” I think that one is morally compelled to go ahead and publish.) Our own Big Box notes, though, that it’s not clear whether this is the moving-in date or the moving-out date — to which I would add: “isn’t it sort of odd that the sound was turned off?” Isn’t the default for video nowadays that the audio is on? Maybe not; again, the collective intelligence of OJB’s readers will let us know.
If it is the move-in video, then Moxley’s description of the house as at that time — that “the carpeting was new, appliances worked and walls were spotless. Thriving flowers, plants and grass adorned the idyllic back yard less than 4 miles from the Pacific Ocean” — is clearly off.
OK, so what do we know? We know that someone took a video of the Rohrabachers’ rental at a time when it was unfurnished. That person seems to be tall and slim, balding and bearded, casually dressed — and wearing long hair extensions, at least three or four thick braided strands draped over the front of his left shoulder and a thick cable of them (visible in the inset) hanging down in the back.
I presume that the beard, receding hairline, and the flat but muscular chest rule out Rhonda Carmody Rohrabacher as the videographer. Is that Dana? Apparently I have some history of trouble recognizing Dana outside of official U.S. government photos, but the build seems too athletic to be him — and then there are the hair extensions, which, if it is him, bear some explanation. (I don’t think that Dana wears hair extensions — at least not of that length. Perhaps someone out there knows otherwise. But if it is Dana, then his appearance may help us understand what year this was from.)
So who is this guy? Is he taking video of the house just before Dana moved in (in which event the dirty carpet was in large part not Dana’s fault) or just after he moved out? Or was it taken at some moment in between during which the Rohrabacher furniture had to be moved out of the house — say, because they needed to spray for pests or make it hypo-allergenic? We have no idea — but, whoever he is, this guy knows.
I realize that I’m taking a light tone here, but at its core this is serious stuff: if this material is being presented as evidence, then someone is probably perpetrating a fraud on the court, which is very bad. If Polyniak’s photos don’t match what the house looked like when Dana moved out in August 2012, then he’s in trouble. If this video is from an earlier date, then Dana really may be committing a crime by representing it as the “move-out” condition.
Or, perhaps, there’s not much difference between Polyniak’s photos and Dana’s Dewar’s-hair-extension guy’s video after all. The photos largely showed dirty rugs and flooring, which the video largely either skips or confirms. And many of Moxley’s charges include things that wouldn’t show up in a video. In the list below, items in bold should be visible in the video (unless the videographer was really deft about avoiding bad images) and italicized items would either certainly or possibly be hidden:
Massive black stains and muck covered the carpet throughout the home. Sticky grime encased damaged, rusted appliances. Denied water, once-thriving outside plants and grass dried up and died. Blinds were cracked. Black dirt ruined the appearance of once-sparkling tile floors. Walls inexplicably contained odd holes, nail polish, wax and some smelly substance that may have been feces.
Every toilet seat in the house was broken. The ceilings showed smoke damage. Light switches had been cracked. Clumps of hair and remnants of what may have been balloons or some other rubbery material clogged sinks. Cracks scarred doors. Thick, solidified grease rendered the air-suction vent above the kitchen stove useless.Bathroom towel bars were missing, and vanities suffered water damage.
A second-floor suite used by Dana’s wife, Rhonda, as her bedroom contained a huge, mysterious, lubricant-like stain—something you might expect on the floor of a Hollywood sex club—that had seeped through thick carpet and padding to tarnish a hardwood floor. The dishwasher wasn’t functioning. A wooden chair in the back yard had been crushed, and phone lines were strangely severed. An overflowing tub cracked a ceiling with water damage.
And, no joke, white maggots squirmed underneath a kitchen stove that may not have ever been cleaned during Rohrabacher’s $3,350-per-month occupancy, which was secured, in part, with character references from fellow OC congressmen Ed Royce, John Campbell and Ken Calvert.
Who’s right here? I don’t know — but I think that it’s time to try to find our best witness!