In the early seventies, I was invited to dinner to meet Arnold Schwarzenegger by Bobby Zarem, N.Y.'s powerful publicist. We met at Manhattan's Elaine's Restaurant.
Schwarzenegger was polite, not at all flirtatious and a gentleman as he looked around the restaurant and took in the powerbrokers one at a time as I did. Zarem was prepping Schwarzenegger's assault on America and was instrumental in Schwarzenegger's success. But it was Schwarzenegger who had the vision to hire a publicist to navigate him to superstardom.
In an interview with Fortune magazine in 2004, Schwarzenegger told how he suffered what "would now be called child abuse" from his father.
"My hair was pulled. I was hit with belts. So was the kid next door. It was just the way it was. Many of the children I've seen were broken by their parents, which was the German-Austrian mentality.
“They didn't want to create an individual. It was all about conforming. I was one who did not conform, and whose will could not be broken. Therefore, I became a rebel.
“Every time I got hit, and every time someone said, 'You can't do this,' I said, 'this is not going to be for much longer, because I'm going to move out of here. I want to be rich. I want to be somebody."
Schwarzenegger's father was in the German Army. Gustave Schwarzenegger preferred his stepson, Meinhard, to Arnold, whom Gustave had a suspicion was not his son. So Arnold Schwarzenegger became a champion body builder, but he remained poor.
When I met him, he was an awkward body of a bulging bulk of muscles. He could barely speak English and had a thick, heavy accent. It was apparent that he was interested in promoting Arnold Schwarzenegger at all costs, and the world would discover that women were one of his means to this end. He was looking for "hot copy." He was soon to be discovered as the Terminator out to dominate and destroy anyone or anything that got in the way of his carnal desires.
His first serious relationship was with a woman who claimed that he was conceited and that he felt the world revolved around him. Barbara Outland Baker was an English teacher, and from 1969 to 1974 was useful to Schwarzenegger's need to learn to speak English if he were to achieve his dream of becoming rich and somebody — a superstar. Baker claimed a turbulent and passionate love life and only learned of his being unfaithful to her after they split.
"He's as much a self-made man as it's possible to be," Ms. Baker wrote in her memoir. Schwarzenegger granted Baker a three-hour interview, never once turning his back on an opportunity for press though her tell-all was an unflattering portrait. He even wrote a forward for the 2006 book, titled "Arnold and Me in the Shadow of the Austrian Oak."
His ego could have told him that all press is good press and he would only promote and identify with the positive statements in the book and let the negative fall into the fallout, dust, past. But will he be able to accomplish this with "Housekeepergate," the most recent discovery that he has fathered a child with a member of his wife's staff?
"I take full responsibility. I am truly sorry," he says, after parroting a cliche that he and Shriver are taking their relationship, "one day at a time."
He has a lot of ghosts in his closet.
"People can listen to the gossip, or they can believe in me," Maria Shriver, wife of 25 years has said prior to the discovery of the love child.
Like Ms. Baker, Schwarzenegger found a woman who would help him to achieve his dream of riches, superstardom and even of becoming the Governor of the State of California.
He is heinously deceitful, raising questions about his conscience — or lack of it. Who is writing his press statements now and telling him how to handle the press? Today we discover he fired his housekeeper and mother of his child. Just wait until her story surfaces.
How will the cruel philanderer spin this one? Will he put this latest humiliation in his next movie, book or cartoon? Will he bully his way into our hearts, as he has in the past, or will America hang him out to dry and boycott anything he promotes, is involved in or has his image on? Oh, why — even when they are caught — do these famous men who abuse women continue to try to get away with it?
The spin now appears to be that the Housekeeper pursued Arnold which would make him her victim. Oh, Please! He had the erections and sperm and the past documented history of "gropermania"!