scandal-stained wretches

Nannying for Rupert Murdoch and Wendi Deng Does Not Sound Pleasant

Photo: Patrick McMullan

Gawker has an exclusive interview today with Ying-Shu Hsu, a former Chinese tutor and nanny for Rupert Murdoch’s two young daughters with Wendi Deng, and it’s an “evil rich people demean the help” classic. The story hits all the notes you might expect (save pie-induced two-handed attacks): Hsu says she was overworked, underpaid (no benefits, no paid vacation, no sick days), and verbally abused. But, for once, Deng gets to reign as supreme villain over her media mogul husband, who’s described as an appreciative “gentleman.” The woman of the house, though, is the wicked witch in this tale, and it’s the almost parodic anecdotes that really make it:

The most drastic example of Deng’s abusive behavior that Hsu could recall was the time she kicked an intransigent nanny out her chauffeur-driven car. “One of the nannies made a mistake in the car, and Wendi told the chauffeur to stop the car and told the nanny to get out and then drove off. She has a hot temper.” Hsu, who couldn’t recall the nature of the nanny’s grievous error, said the woman considered suing the Murdochs over the incident but never did.

Hsu, meanwhile, did pursue a lawsuit after she was unceremoniously let go for breaking her leg on the job while carrying one of the children. A protracted legal battle for workers’ compensation and damages followed, but not before Deng allegedly said something both out of touch and unsympathetic:

My bone was sticking out,” she says. A housekeeper rushed her to the hospital, where doctors told her she needed surgery. But the surgeon’s schedule was booked, so Hsu spent four days in excruciating pain at the Murdochs’ in Beverly Hills, wearing a temporary cast and taking painkillers. “Wendi told me it was no big deal,” she said. “Rupert broke his leg skiing once and he was fine.”

The Murdochs, of course, brush off the whole account — which has many more gossipy bits — as the lies of “a disgruntled former employee.” Their publicist added, “Having failed in court, she has apparently turned to the media with unfounded and untrue accusations. We will not dignify them with comment.” In Murdoch-speak: You decide!

Rupert Murdoch and Wendi Deng Nanny Claims Abuse