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Rick Bayless and Burger King - Part 3


mtdew
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[Host's note:  To minimise the load on our servers, this topic has been split.  This discussion continues from here.]

 

 

That's how I got here.  I'm an admitted fan of flaco, a part-time foodie, ex-line cook, and a member of one other message board (somethingawful.com.)  I always enjoyed the occasional foodie thread on SA, but I was delighted to find a whole foodie board here.

Wow, another goon comes to eGullet. Occasional "foodie" thread is a good way to put it. There probably are more "What Fast Food is the best" threads than "foodie" on SA. cool.gif

Edited by lesliec
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Bourdain worship reaches a whole new level...

eh, not really...let's just say that she and I have had that as a private joke for a while. Definitely a fan though, but not a creepy one. We just like to drink and cook and have a good time, y'know?

The line for blowing AB starts behind me... and I :biggrin::wub: am an admitted creepy fan.

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Bourdain worship reaches a whole new level...

eh, not really...let's just say that she and I have had that as a private joke for a while. Definitely a fan though, but not a creepy one. We just like to drink and cook and have a good time, y'know?

Meant to be tongue in cheek... so to speak :wink:

peak performance is predicated on proper pan preparation...

-- A.B.

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They advertise it as freshly baked, though I'm sure that could mean something similar to someone freshly baking Pillsbury at home. I'd search back through the thread for elucidation, but it's too damn long.

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Wow, another goon comes to eGullet. Occasional "foodie" thread is a good way to put it. There probably are more "What Fast Food is the best" threads than "foodie" on SA. :cool:

hello there, fellow goon! Yes, the food threads on SA tend toward "how do I make my ramen not suck" but there are a few good ones like the mise en place thread a few days ago.

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you know, i really liked the egullet kids until this thread. yeah, i've been quiet, but i've been liking you quietly.

i'm so tired of the character assassination. until you can tell me you are, in fact, rick baylless' moral compass, and i'll want proof, like dna proof, then shut the fuck up. and if you are, and you tell me, "hey man, i really did do it for the money and yeah, i totally sold out my values" then i want you to remember that time that one day where you cheated on your girlfriend/boyfriend/husband/wife,

lied to your boss, told your kids you wish you never had them, took out a secret second mortgage to cover your debt, wore your spouses underwear and got caught, fucked up the big report or bled in to your mise-en-place and didn't say anything, and then judge yourself by that instance for the rest of your god-damned life. in fact, make a sign that's got your worst moment on it and wear it around your freaking neck. better yet, do it on national TV. and right underneath it write in really big letters "MY WORST MOMENT: IT INVALIDATES EVERTYHING I AM". and then suck my fucking dick.

Edited by sieve (log)
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i want you to remember that time that one day where you cheated on your girlfriend/boyfriend/husband/wife, lied to your boss, told your kids you wish you never had them, took out a secret second mortgage to cover your debt, wore your spouses underwear and got caught, fucked up the big report or bled in to your mise-en-place and didn't say anything . . .

Hey, have you been spying on me? :shock:

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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wore your spouses underwear and got caught,.

She told you? I can't believe it! How long have you two known each other? I feel like such a fool. :laugh::raz:

Edited to say that Fat Guy beat me to it, dammit. :angry:

Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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I forgot.
He says he's received "hundreds of support letters" and only two negative e-mails about the ad

TWO NEGATIVE E-MAILS?

Oh re-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-alllly?

I don't buy that for one single itty-bitty tiny weeny second.

Anyone here care to inform the Post of conditions to the contrary?

We've heard this line before. On eGullet, its "The users support me via PM!"

That and "Experts are PM'ing me" right?

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You know, several people have been taking the position that we have "no right to judge Bayless" on this matter. And I have to say that I simply don't understand that. If, say, I took $250k to endorse Burger King I'd say people here who hadn't been in that position have little right to judge me.

Bayless is a different kind of case. He put himself in this position, up on a pedestal, which is something I haven't done. As a public person on a pedestal of his own making, he opens himself up to public accountability and also to public criticism. I have in the past described Bayless as an "evangelist" for his philosophies, and I think the allusion is an apt one. To use your example of infidelity: this is something that most people have been involved in to one degree or another over the course of a lifetime of relationships. I certainly would not seek to condemn someone based on an infidelity. However, if a moral evangelist who preaches to the public against infidelity is involved in an infidelity himself, that is a different story. He who proclaims a higher standard is in turn accountable to that higher standard. This man would be fair game for public censure over his infidelities. Bayless is one such person, and if he is being judged, he is weighed on scales of his own making.

As I said earlier, if he didn't want to be the figurehead of a reformation he shouldn't have nailed those theses to the door. No one put a gun to his head and forced him to form the Chefs Collaborative or use his popularity as a pulpit to preach his culinary gospel. He reaped the rewards of that advocacy, and now he is reaping a different kind of reward from the same flock he once sought to lead. I, for one, find it objectionable that we should be excoriated for judging Bayless using the same principles he used to separate the good from the bad for so long.

--

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i want you to remember that time that one day where you cheated on your girlfriend/boyfriend/husband/wife, lied to your boss, told your kids you wish you never had them, took out a secret second mortgage to cover your debt, wore your spouses underwear and got caught, fucked up the big report or bled in to your mise-en-place and didn't say anything . . .

Hey, have you been spying on me? :shock:

:laugh::laugh: Thanks for the laugh.

I can honestly say I've never seen a chicken

samich bring out such vehemence.

I think I'm getting indigestion from the stress level. :wacko:

-Therese

Many parts of a pine tree are edible.
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you know, i really liked the egullet kids until this thread. yeah, i've been quiet, but i've been liking you quietly.

I think it has become lost somewhere in this thread, but there has been a considerable diversity of opinion here. Some people have been defending him, and some have been attacking him. Among the latter, there is a considerable divergence between those who feel he's betrayed a noble cause, and those who feel he's revealed the innate hypocrisy of a fashionable cause. These are all (more or less) legitimate positions to take. Some people have announced that they'll never return to Frontera, but no one has suggested that this besmirches Rick's true greatness, which has nothing to do with his TV persona, his hypocrisy, or anything else, except his his love of Mexico and its food, and his ability to explain it to the rest of us.

I can certainly understand why people might be annoyed off by the cock sucking invitations flying around, but I don't understand the vehemence of Bayless's defence. He is a "celebrity," of his own volition, and therefore loses certain qualities of personhood in our society. This is simply a fact that we're all responsible for. That is the whirlwind he reaps.

(Bourdain too, though to a lesser extent because his grand pronouncements tend to deal with pleasure more than morality).

Finally, goddamn it, douchebag is one word.

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I, for one, find it objectionable that we should be excoriated for judging Bayless using the same principles he used to separate the good from the bad for so long.

i'll tell you what. let rick shit on his values. then you can shit on him for shitting on his values. then i'll shit on you for shitting on rick's values. then you can shit on me for shitting on you for shitting on rick for shitting on his values. who wants to be on top of the pile? dude, aside from that giant eyeball, which totally freaks me out, i 'll listen to you and take you at your word. what i won't do is denounce you because i don't get where you're coming from.

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As I said earlier, if he didn't want to be the figurehead of a reformation he shouldn't have nailed those theses to the door. No one put a gun to his head and forced him to form the Chefs Collaborative or use his popularity as a pulpit to preach his culinary gospel. He reaped the rewards of that advocacy, and now he is reaping a different kind of reward from the same flock he once sought to lead. I, for one, find it objectionable that we should be excoriated for judging Bayless using the same principles he used to separate the good from the bad for so long.

But...

To challenge his integrity one must assume that he knowingly violated these principles.

If I am a nuclear physicist and I say that the most elementary particles in the universe are atoms, but then I find out, hey, there are smaller, more baisc particles, am I a liar, a hypocrite, a dope, or just wrong? The first and second and possibly the third require intimate knowledge of the individual unless there's substantial evidence about the person's knowledge and intentions.

Similarly, you might suspect that Bayless was doing it for the money, for the fame, for his ego, or whatever. But the venom that's been spewed forth here seems hugely out of proportion without such knowledge. It should merely be a debate over facts and politics. But instead it's a character assault that has little to do wth reason. It's reactionary.

This seems like reasonable positions to me:

He made a mistake. Bayless' alignment with the principles as enumerated in Chef's Collaborative are incompatible with promoting a Burger King product even under the best intentions.

But that statement, though making a judgment about his actions, makes no judgment about his character or intentions. Sieve's criticism is correct in that even if you assume the worst only on this one incident, RB could still be a much better man than any of us. He may regularly volunteer in charitable organizations, give a huge percentage of his income to charities, save babies from fires on a daily basis, and even think bacon is god's gift to the stomach, but from this thread it would appear all of that would be nullified if he decided to "sell-out" on an advertising campaign.

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I, for one, find it objectionable that we should be excoriated for judging Bayless using the same principles he used to separate the good from the bad for so long.

i'll tell you what. let rick shit on his values. then you can shit on him for shitting on his values. then i'll shit on you for shitting on rick's values. then you can shit on me for shitting on you for shitting on rick for shitting on his values. who wants to be on top of the pile? dude, aside from that giant eyeball, which totally freaks me out, i 'll listen to you and take you at your word. what i won't do is denounce you because i don't get where you're coming from.

I'm sorry, but I am barely to discern what you are getting at here. I'm not saying this as a snide remark, honestly. Perhaps you could clarify.

You won't denounce me because you don't know where I'm coming from? Does this need a comma, as in: "what i won't do is denounce you, because i don't get where you're coming from" (i.e., you won't denounce me, and the reason you won't denounce me is that you don't know where I'm coming from" or are you saying that you won't denounce me simply because you don't know where I am coming from? Either way, I fail to see how this applies to Bayless? We know exactly where he's coming from, because he has written, spoken and publicized exactly that. That's one difference between me and Bayless. Another difference is that Bayless is a public figure in this context and I am not.

--

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If I am a nuclear physicist and I say that the most elementary particles in the universe are atoms, but then I find out, hey, there are smaller, more baisc particles, am I a liar, a hypocrite, a dope, or just wrong? The first and second and possibly the third require intimate knowledge of the individual unless there's substantial evidence about the person's knowledge and intentions.

I don't understand this analogy. In the physicist's case he misunderstood the nature of the atom, which at the time was largely unknown. He was simply mistaken.

I'd say Bayless must have had a clear understanding of the "nature" of BK. There's no way he could have believed that endorsing one of BK's products would in turn cause them to conform to his ideals.

peak performance is predicated on proper pan preparation...

-- A.B.

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hello there, fellow goon! Yes, the food threads on SA tend toward "how do I make my ramen not suck" but there are a few good ones like the mise en place thread a few days ago.

I missed the mise en place thread. You need the Iraqi Info Minister avatar here.

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sustainable food choices (no)

responsible agricultural growing techniques (no)

the impact of food choices on the environment (no)

the advantages of locally grown and seasonally fresh foods (no)

It says including these. It's starts out with:

concepts and benefits of good, safe, and wholesome foods

It seems that it promotes these three, at least in the mind of Bayless, according to his statements.

Do any of the restaurants from Alice Waters, Roy Yamaguchi, Rick Bayless, or whoever else was one of the founders, actually meet these goals perfectly? If I remember correctly, Waters even says that she tries to abide by some of it, but not to the exclusion of quality. It seems like with Bayless' restaurants and Chez Panisse both serving Niman Ranch beef year round that local/seasonal isn't always followed.

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Finally, I can get back to annoying people on this thread. And to improve my chances in debate against slkinsey, I've changed my avatar. His was freaking me out and I needed a counter-curse. It's a self-portrait and proves I have a sixth sense when it comes to gastronomic questions. There's sweet, sour, salty, bitter, msg, and my sixth taste, the all seeing eye of the moral palate.....

Now, back to the annoyance....

I don't think it makes much of a difference -- as far as hypocisy goes -- whether he was involved or not. Either it's a step in the right direction or it's not. Either he knew so or should have known so before hand or he didn't. Him taking part only would show whether he was inept at producing a fast food that could meet his ideological requirements.

btw, I like Bayless' books a lot. I own three. Not a fan of him too much on his shows, but he's not bad. I was disappointed when I ate at both his restaurants, though. His recipes in his book are better than the dishes he serves. Interestingly, I think one of his problems is that he doesn't stick to traditional preparations on key combinations. (And his kitchen's technique when it came to cooking meats such as pork loin was sorely lacking -- dry, dry, dry.) Also I wonder how much was sitting in the fridge or in jars. eg, the salsas tasted like they came from the jar.

Speaking of which, how do those of you who have attacked him for "selling-out" feel about his line of salsas? Shouldn't he be encouraging people to avoid jarred salsas and make their own with local, organic produce?

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