October 6th, 2017

Why the expose on Harvey Weinstein now?

I don’t have an answer to the question I pose in the title of this post. But I certainly think it’s an interesting question.

Lots of other people have dissected the Weinstein flap and I refer you to what they’ve written: for example, Ace has been on the case quite heavily, and you can find plenty more in today’s memeorandum.

The very very short version is that Weinstein has been a big Hollywood producer and executive as well as Democratic donor for many many years, and he’s apparently been coming on to women in various crass ways for just as many years. It is alleged to have been an open secret known to those in the business and in the Party. But a public fuss wasn’t made (and he settled some potential suits out of court by paying money) until yesterday, when this story appeared describing the whole sordid mess.

It’s important to note that that link I just gave goes to the NY Times, which broke the story. That seems to me to be one of the most curious things about all of this. Why did the Times choose to turn on a man who—if the Times’ allegations are to be believed—was protected until now?

I don’t know the answer, and the articles I read that purport to tell us say nothing of value. Weinstein himself has apologized and admitted some of the allegations but plans to sue the Times because “they didn’t give me enough time to respond.”

I must admit this story fills me with a feeling of exhaustion. I guess I always assumed that Hollywood was rife with the kind of behavior of which Weinstein is accused, and that everyone—I mean everyone—who goes to Hollywood to make movies is aware of it. That doesn’t make it right, of course. It’s wrong. Weinstein was a powerful man whose power intimidated people, which is an element of the claim of sexual harrassment. But—at least from what I’ve read so far—there seem to have been few repercussions for women saying “no,” and the threat was implicit in Weinstein’s powerful position rather than explicitly part of his seduction (which is a kind word for it) routine. And he doesn’t seem—unlike Roman Polanski—to have included underage girls in his sweep.

If his behavior really was common knowledge, the hypocrisy of the Democrats who took money from him is evident. That hypocrisy included the MSM, until this Times expose. But again, is hypocrisy of that magnitude news? I don’t think so; after all, look to the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal of about twenty years ago, and the John Edwards coverup of about ten years ago.

No, to me the news here (and the mystery) is really that the Times is leading the charge.

Harvey Weinstein supposedly blames the vast right-wing conspiracy (if the report is true; it’s not based on an interview with Weinstein himself, but rather “a source”):

Speaking to DailyMail.com a source painted a different picture, one of a man who felt that he was the victim of a sinister-sounding plot.

The source said: ‘Harvey feels is being set up by a team of people who are out to get him.

‘There are are conservative organisations who know he is long-time foe of the NRA, of Donald Trump, and a longtime supporter of Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and the Democrats.

‘He believes they are financing a team of lawyers who are digging up these stories.

‘There’s a political agenda behind this. Harvey feels it’s a conspiracy and that’s the most interesting part of this, where it originated from, not the erroneous reporting that’s going on.

‘He won’t be the last, other people like him will be targeted too.’

Yes, the Times has long been the instrument and puppet of the right. Right.

Weinstein says that much of the article is a lie:

Harder [one of Weinstein’s attorneys] said that he was preparing a lawsuit against the New York Times for writing a story that is ‘saturated with false and defamatory statements about Harvey Weinstein’.

He said: ‘It relies on mostly hearsay accounts and a faulty report, apparently stolen from an employee personnel file, which has been debunked by 9 different eyewitnesses.

‘We sent the Times the facts and evidence, but they ignored it and rushed to publish. We are preparing the lawsuit now. All proceeds will be donated to women’s organizations’.

How much of the Times’ story is true, and how much false? I don’t know; I think it’s always good to be careful in these matters because people do lie. But this certainly seems like a great deal of it is true, and I don’t even think Weinstein is disputing that but rather certain specifics in it.

And then there are statements such as this one from another of Weinstein’s attorneys who ordinarily finds herself on the other side of sexual harrassment cases:

As a women’s rights advocate, I have been blunt with Harvey and he has listened to me. I have told him that times have changed, it is 2017, and he needs to evolve to a higher standard.

‘I have found Harvey to be refreshingly candid and receptive to my message. He has acknowledged mistakes he has made. He is reading books and going to therapy. He is an old dinosaur learning new ways’.

New ways???? Excuse me? That’s almost humorous. Is Weinstein a sort of sexual Rip van Winkle, asleep for 20 years and just—as they say these days—woke?

24 Responses to “Why the expose on Harvey Weinstein now?”

  1. CV Says:

    Apparently TWC is making a series based on Lisa Bloom’s book, so that explains a lot about why she is so tolerant about the old dinosaur’s ways (old and new).

    Hillary Clinton and Obama were happy to take Weinstein’s money, certainly well aware of his reputation, all the while lecturing the rest of us about women’s rights. How the Obamas could send their teenage daughter into an internship at WTC is beyond me (yes I know that Malia, with her secret service agents and pedigree, was in no danger of Harvey harassing her like he did so many other young women).

  2. Surellin Says:

    Why now? How about, “Hillary, when we said go away, we meant it”. Could the left media and the Dem party be delivering a warning? Or perhaps this is like the Lois Lerner thing – get ahead of the story and break it themselves and try to guide it away from the really even more horrible stuff.

  3. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    We can count of pigs wallowing in sloop.

    neo,
    “New ways???? Excuse me? That’s almost humorous. Is Weinstein a sort of sexual Rip van Winkle…”

    The meme, that all white males are potential rapists who must submit or be ‘neutralized’… must have its sacrificial victims.

  4. parker Says:

    I find it curious that the Weinstein story came out during the aftermath of of the Vegas slaughter. The left is usually focused on guns bad gun owners even more bad. Like ghouls they are always focused on MORE gun control, never let a crisis go to waste. Instead, in the absence of more information on the killer and his motivation, they have switched to attacking one of their own.

    I don’t understand the timing. Strange.

  5. Cap'n Rusty Says:

    I suspect the story is far worse than we know at present. The NYTimes is trying to get out ahead of it, so by the time the rest of the story gets out, it will be “old news.”

  6. blert Says:

    The perp is taking a page straight out of Bill Clinton’s playbook: ” Mistakes have been made.”

    Perfect.

  7. blert Says:

    With the Shooter in the news — this is the way to BURY the scandal.

    The Panama Canal was opened, August 1914.

    It was back on page 17, of course.

  8. TommyJay Says:

    Well there was the old time talent agent Henry Willson (two ll’s) who ran an extensive homosexual casting couch. More shocking were/are the claims of Corey Haim and Corey Feldman who said that they were coerced into gay trysts when they were underage actors.

    On the other hand I consider people like Gloria Allred and Lisa Bloom to be reputational assassins. I suspect the lies are rampant at every turn.

    As I’ve queried before, how DOES the Democrat cohort maintain such iron fisted top-down control over themselves? Maybe THIS is how. But if true, how did Harvey Weinstein step out of line so as to warrant this treatment? Ignoring the sexual harassment, I mean, because we know the Dems don’t really care about that.

  9. Lizzy Says:

    People have been leaking stories about him anonymously for many years. Why they’re going on record now is an interesting question. Ronan Farrow is working on a Weinstein story, too, and given what he and his family went through with the Woody Allen scandal, he seems to be better prepared than most for the inevitable push-back from Weinstein & his team.

    This seems to be a moment where these stories are (finally) welcomed, with recent revelations about Bill Cosby, Bill O’Reilly, Roger Ailes, Casey Affleck, Joss Whedon, Anthony Weiner, and Donald Trump. In addition, Bill Clinton’s sexual harassment was (finally) openly mentioned during the 2016 campaign instead just the wink, wink acknowledgement he had some affairs. Women are being supported by the media for coming forward. Maybe these publications feel that their scoops will get enough of an audience & praise to risk the likely lawsuits from Weistein.

  10. steve walsh Says:

    If it is true that Weinstein’s prurient behaviors were well known among the elites of the Left, and they looked the other way for years, then he could reasonably conclude that this story, coming out now, must have been sourced from his enemies on the right. Or maybe it was Bernie…

    The Eagles, in ‘The King of Hollywood’, 1979, were prescient (or maybe just describing a very common situation):

    Well, he sits up there on his leatherette
    Looks through pictures of the ones that he hasn’t had yet
    When he thinks he wants a closer look,
    he gets out his little black telephone book
    (He’s calling, calling, calling
    He’s calling, calling, calling
    He’s calling ,calling, calling
    He’s calling)

    “Come sit down here beside me, honey.
    Let’s have a little heart to heart.
    Now look at me and tell me, darlin’,
    how badly do you want this part?
    Are you willing to sacrifice?
    And are you willing to be real nice?
    All your talent and my good taste,
    I’d hate to see it go to waste.”

    “We gon’ get you an apartment, honey.
    We gon’ get you a car.
    (spoken) Yeah, we’re gonna take care of you, darlin’.
    We gon’ make you a movie star.
    For years I’ve seen ’em come and go.”
    He says, “I’ve had ’em all, ‘ya know.
    I handled everything in my own way.
    I made ’em what they are today.”

    After ‘while nothin’ was pretty.
    After ‘while everything got lost.
    Still, his Jacuzzi runneth over.
    Still he just couldn’t get off.
    He’s just another power junky.
    Just another silk scarf monkey.
    You’d know it if you saw his stuff.
    The man just isn’t big enough.

  11. Harry the Extremist Says:

    “‘There are are conservative organisations who know he is long-time foe of the NRA, of Donald Trump, and a longtime supporter of Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and the Democrats.”

    See?! Im just a victim like you guys! Dont let your enemies destroy me!

  12. Stephen Ippolito Says:

    Kudos to Harvey and his team for so efficiently invoking “the four principles of celebrity crisis” from the Hollywood celebrity playbook.

    Regulars may recall that we explored that concept, coined by Mel Gibson’s PR flack, back in the comments section to your posting of 23 September entitled:”The Return of Valerie Plame”.

    Harvey, or his operatives, seem to have lost no time in checking all four boxes: speed; humility; contrition and personal responsibility.

    Of course, only the first of the four features, (speed), is objectively verifiable while the latter three can and probably are being faked here – by Harvey, or on his behalf.

    You have to admire the sheer chutzpah behind the excuse that he is just an old dinosaur hemmed in by the values of his youth and therefore unable to discern that times have changed since he was a boy.

    This is a man whose immense professional successes in the movie industry all spring from his having his finger on the very pulse of popular culture over decades and who has been supremely successful in discerning coming changes in popular tastes and trends and then quickly mobilising disparate resources to serve up movies that reflect these new fashions.

    His defenders and the MSM know this – and also know that we know it, too.

    Yet they confidently go ahead and insist that this same man, who has long and publicly spouted feminist and progressive talking points, somehow innocently missed the growth of the womens’ movement and is therefore not to be blamed for being unaware of the crassness and unfairness of hotel-room approaches to much younger actresses to watch him shower or rub his flabby flesh.

    I don’t know why these allegations are only now being publicly aired, (it’s a good question), but I know why his defenders are putting out such an obviously cynical defence. For the same reason the MSM put out the obscenity that Hillary was the best qualified presidential candidate since Washington: – they have absolute contempt for the wider public.

  13. Ann Says:

    It could be the main reason the story only broke big-time now is because his company’s power has been greatly diminished in recent years, at least that’s what I take away from this piece in Variety:

    In truth, the noose has been tightening for years around Harvey Weinstein. There’s been a bunker-like mentality at the Weinstein Co. for years, as the indie studio’s money troubles have worsened and as it tried to migrate away from prestige fare and into television. There were too many film flops such as “Tulip Fever,” “Burnt,” and “Gold,” and persistent mutterings that the company could no longer pay its bills. High profile executives would leave, with positions remaining vacant or filled by junior staffers. It’s been a while since the studio was a major force at film festivals, swinging its checkbook around to nab the hottest Sundance titles. …

    Even before the reports broke, agents were already wary about working with Weinstein because of reports that its money was running out. One agent told Variety that the Times’ report will give them an even bigger reason to stay away from the studio.

    In some respects, Thursday’s piece was the confirmation of decades of rumors and shop talk that have clung to Weinstein. At various times, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and the New Yorker (which has its own competing piece still set to launch) have tried to break this story. They’ve aggressively pursued the angle of whether or not Weinstein used corporate funds at Miramax to pay for legal settlements with women. In most cases, Weinstein was able to successfully hit back at those claims. Another stumbling block was that many women did not want to go on the record with their allegations. That will likely change with the Times piece.

    And this piece at The Cut thinks it may also be due to Weinstein’s personal diminishment:

    I saw Harvey Weinstein earlier this year, at a Planned Parenthood celebration. I was struck by the fact that he was there — as the Times details, he has remained a donor to and supporter of liberal organizations, women’s-rights organizations, and Democrats, including Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, whose daughter recently worked as his intern. But I was also struck by his physical diminishment; he seemed small and frail, and, when I caught sight of him in May, he appeared to be walking with a cane.

    …it’s hard not to consider the circumstances, the years, the risks, and the work put in by so many to convince so many others to be able to come forward, and the fact that perhaps only a weakening of Weinstein’s grip permitted his expensive self-crafted armor to finally be pierced.

  14. Ymar Sakar Says:

    Oh, there’s far worse things going on in the US East capital of Evil Hollywood than what the Deep State allows you to know.

    Of course, I myself have already begun to get into the backstory of where the evil came from.

    I mentioned a few of the items here, I believe, although I haven’t done a comprehensive expose unless it was on my blog.

  15. Ymar Sakar Says:

    Western Capital of Evil!

  16. Stephen Ippolito Says:

    Ann makes a very good point when she ventures as the likely reason behind the revelations going public at this time being that the sharks now smell Harvey’s blood in the water.

    It is a universal truth of human relations that is so basic that it is often overlooked, no? It is being overlooked by a lot of the press at the moment when we survey headlines along the lines of: “Are these revelations the end for Weinstein?”

    They confuse cause with effect. The publicity isn’t causing and won’t cause Weinstein to lose power. It is his failing power, or its perception, that prompted and fuels the publicity.

    Surely we have all followed the dynamic in the news, or studied it in history books or even seen it played out on a smaller scale in our workplaces: as long as the dictator, prophet or business tycoon maintains the perception of being all-powerful then he or she is invulnerable to attack; but let a crack in the perception appear then the sharks in the form of rivals who would replace him and the enemies the powerful inevitably and always make along the way will gather confidence and move against him.

    And all the time the lesser players who may have attached themselves opportunistically to the tycoon will abandon him, maneuvering to ingratiate themselves with the incoming regime.

    Robert Bolt has the character of Henry VIII observe on this very same timeless dynamic to Sir Thomas More in “A Man for All Seasons”:

    “There are those…who follow me because I wear the crown; and those…who follow me because they are jackals with sharp teeth and I am their tiger; there’s a mass that follows me because it follows anything that moves. And then there’s you…”

    Not too many Thomas Mores in Hollywood today.

  17. FOAF Says:

    “They confuse cause with effect. The publicity isn’t causing and won’t cause Weinstein to lose power. It is his failing power, or its perception, that prompted and fuels the publicity.”

    That sounds right, Stephen. It is likely that the women he harassed are far from the only people in Hollywood that he treated like dirt. And now that he is vulnerable they are coming out of the woodwork.

  18. Matt_SE Says:

    I agree with Surellin. Even though Obama is somewhat implicated, he is done with political office and there’s no indication another Obama is going into politics.
    This puts quite a damper on the Clintons’ influence within the party though.

    This may be a way of wresting control of the Democrat Party away before we’re too close to the next elections.

  19. Mac Says:

    That “old dinosaur has to learn new ways” stuff is b.s. He was born in 1952. He came of age when feminism was in full flower. He’s not eligible for a plea of ignorance and faulty social conditioning.

  20. Yancey Ward Says:

    Reading the comments, there are two that probably should be highlighted- the one by Stephen Ippolito that points out Weinstein was already bleeding power and the sharks smelled it. Also, I think Cap’nRusty is also correct- there is some far uglier material coming and the news media, like The NYTimes who have been sitting on this story for at least a decade, are getting out in front of it.

    Also, it doesn’t hurt a lot of Democrats that Hillary! is so closely tied to Weinstein. I for one am absolutely convinced she intends to run again in 2020, and this might well be all the incentive some in the media needed to take Weinstein out from under Shelob.

  21. Richard Aubrey Says:

    I don’t expect W to get any more ink than the First Horndog did.
    Although, speculating here, not having the power to do good things for the feminists might mean believing women who say they’ve been raped.

  22. blert Says:

    In the immediate aftermath of the Shooter… does ANYONE think that Harvey is going to stay in the news ?

    I thought not.

    THAT’S why the NY Times released a bombshell that could’ve been released AGES ago.

  23. Ymar Sakar Says:

    Weinstein probably offended some Witch Coven and got his blessing revoked.

  24. Barry Meislin Says:

    Why Weinstein, why now?

    Lee Smith has the low down:
    http://www.weeklystandard.com/the-human-stain-why-the-harvey-weinstein-story-is-worse-than-you-think/article/2009995

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