While [Mr. & Mrs. David Geimer] were in Paris, David took a photo of his wife and Polanski. They are all smiles.
Geimer told [a] French magazine:
“Let me be very clear: what happened with Polanski was never a big problem for me. I didn’t even know it was illegal, that someone could be arrested for it. I was fine, I’m still fine. The fact that we’ve made this [a big deal] weighs on me terribly. To have to constantly repeat that it wasn’t a big deal, it’s a terrible burden.
“The extradition attempt, the fact that Roman was arrested like that, it was so unfair and so in opposition to justice,” Geimer also said in the Le Pointe interview. “Everyone should know by now that Roman has served his sentence. Which was… long, if you want my opinion. From my side, nobody wanted him to go to jail, but he did and it was enough. He paid his debt to society. There, end of story. He did everything that was asked of him until the situation went berserk he had no other choice but to flee. Anyone who thinks that he deserves to be in prison is wrong. It isn’t the case today and it wasn’t the case yesterday.”
I commented at length, back in 2009, during the outbreak of national hysteria in which journalists on both political sides climbed up on portable pulpits and howled for Polanski to be extradited from Europe and flung into prison for sleeping with an underage young lady more than 30 years earlier.
The Mainstream Media and the Blogosphere quoted the teenage Buffalo shooter’s lengthy manifesto, but they were consistently careful to refrain from making it available to the rest of us by linking it.
I was mildly curious, and I found this deliberate censorship frustrating. It seems to me that an argument could be made that nation-wide coverage of these unfortunate instances of insanely malevolent behavior ought to be avoided in order to prevent inspiring other crazies seeking attention from emulation. There can be no doubt that the publicity received by the first madman creates followers.
But if you’re going to devote massive coverage and lengthy analysis and opinion to a murder case of this kind, it should be treated objectively, and members of the public should have the same access to the facts of the killer’s thinking (and fantasies and delusions) as members of the media.
I found it fairly time consuming to locate the link(s), but I went to all the trouble, and here they are.
He is obviously talented but warped and very deeply disturbed. He is perversely motivated in the direction of extreme, unpopular positions to the point of actually implementing fantasies of murderous violence. His animus against (most) blacks and Jews is clearly in a xenophobic tradition associated with the reactionary Right. However, he is also outspokenly hostile toward Capitalism and the rich. He obviously finds left-wing extremist opinions similarly attractive. Ideologically, he seems to resemble Goebbels, Streicher, and other left-wing Nazis, combining hostility toward Capitalism and Economic Freedom with pathological resentment of the Jews and Racism.
His crimes will fuel more demands for Gun Control, but looking at all this, you have to wonder how anybody this obviously crazy was never identified as dangerous and in need of help before he started shooting people.
Fat cat Columbia Journalism School prof, New Yorker writer, endless beneficiary of racial favoritism and diversity hiring, Jelani Cobb who makes a terrific living typing out fantastical complaints and brazen expressions of ethnic chauvinism dashed off a little piece in Slate, commenting bitterly in support of the recent rebellion of Woke minority hires at the New York Times.
How much extra do you suppose the establishment organs that performed all sorts of intellectual acrobatics to justify awarding special platforms and positions to pseudo-educated tokens and paying them professional salaries to produce this kind of tripe need to add to make up for all that “additional, unpaid, and invisible work of making [the] workplaces more equitable”?
Splinter reports that financial figures show that Google is taking home a paycheck from News almost as large as the entire journalistic community combined.
Last year Google made an astonishing $4.6 billion off the news industry, according to the New York Times. Thatâ€™s a shocking amount of money, considering the declining state of journalism, and the fact that Google isnâ€™t actually reporting or writing anything itself.
The figure was drawn from a new report by the News Media Alliance, who say the journalism industry deserves to see a cut of those massive earnings.
â€œThey make money off this arrangement and there needs to be a better outcome for news publishers,â€ David Chavern, the president and CEO of the alliance, told the Times.
The report points out that the entire news industry made $5.1 billion off digital advertising last year, which is only a little more than Google made off that same content. The News Media Alliance believes its estimate of Googleâ€™s earnings was conservative, and the real number may be much higher.
â€œThe study blatantly illustrates what we all know so clearly and so painfully,â€ , Philadelphia Media Network CEO Terrance C.Z. Egger told the Times. â€œThe current dynamics in the relationships between the platforms and our industry are devastating.
This week, in his hebdomadal New York magazine piece, Andrew Sullivan was back to pure left-wing democrat partisan flackery. Just one little section, though, I thought, cried out for particular attention, the bit where Andrew sternly rebukes that lawless reprobate Donald Trump:
Almost all our liberal democratic norms and institutions are much weaker today than they were a year ago. Trump has not assaulted the Constitution directly. He has not refused a court order, so far. But he has obstructed justice in his firing of James Comey, and abused the spirit of the pardon power by using it for a public official who violated citizensâ€™ Constitutional rights, before he was even sentenced. In the most worrying case so far, he has refused to enforce the sanctions against Russia that were passed by a veto-proof margin by the Congress. I fear this is because his psyche cannot actually follow the instructions of anyone but himself. This is also why, after failing to repeal, replace or amend Obamacare, he has not faithfully executed the law, but actively sabotaged it. If he does not have his way, he will either sulk and refuse to do his constitutional duty, or he will simply smash whatever institution or law that obstructs his will. At some point, we may come to a more profound test of his ability to operate as just one of three equal branches of government. I think heâ€™ll fail it.
Yes, the forms of the Constitution remain largely intact after nine months. But the norms that make the Constitution work are crumbling. The structure looks the same, but Trump has relentlessly attacked their foundations. Do not therefore keep your eyes on the surface. Put your ear to the ground.
This is pretty rich stuff coming from illegal immigrant Andrew Sullivan who managed to successfully defy for most of two decades the 1987 ban on entry to the United States by HIV-infected persons. Sullivan managed to elude deportation, despite being diagnosed with HIV in 1993 (the same year the ban on immigration was statutorily re-affirmed) using Blat.
Andrew was then editor of The New Republic, a very influential and big deal position, and he was consequently, despite his contagious and potentially fatal, perverse-sex-connected illness, able to swing an indefinitely renewable â€œOâ€ visa, a special status awarded to an alien “who possesses extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics, or who has a demonstrated record of extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry and has been recognized nationally or internationally for those achievements.”
All our liberal democratic institutions took another very big hit for Andrew in 2009, when the US Attorney working for the Obama Administration declined to pursue a marijuana charge against the British-born journalist because it would have resulted in the (probably permanent) deportation of a prominent commentator passionately devoted to the incumbent administration’s support. So flagrant was the special treatment Andrew Sullivan received that the US Magistrate Judge wrote an 11-page dissenting memorandum protesting what had occurred.
[A] federal judge says Sullivan did not deserve preferential treatment from prosecutors who dropped a marijuana possession charge after the journalist was recently caught smoking a joint on a federally owned beach on Cape Cod.
In a strongly worded memorandum issued Thursday, US Magistrate Judge Robert B. Collings said the decision by Acting US Attorney Michael K. Loucks to dismiss a federal misdemeanor possession charge against Sullivan flouted a â€œcardinal principle of our legal systemâ€™â€™ – that all persons stand equal before the law.
Three other defendants charged with the same offense had to appear before Collings the same day as Sullivan, the judge noted. But Sullivanâ€™s case was the only one prosecutors did not pursue, out of concern that the $125 fine carried by the relatively minor offense could derail his US immigration application.
â€œIt is quite apparent that Mr. Sullivan is being treated differently from others who have been charged with the same crime in similar circumstances,â€™â€™ Collings wrote in the 11-page memorandum, adding that prosecutorsâ€™ rationale for the dismissal was inadequate.
Collings added with obvious irritation that he had no power to order prosecutors to pursue the case, and granted their motion to dismiss it. The fact that he did, however, â€œdoes not require the Court to believe that the end result is a just one,â€™â€™ he wrote.
So, tell us, Andrew, which outrage shakes the foundations of our liberal democratic norms and institutions more violently, the merciful (though obviously partisan) clemency sparing jail time to an 80-something-year-old Sheriff facing a contempt charge from a judicial political adversary (Joe Arpaio) or covert White House intervention to quash a criminal drug possession rap that might deport a useful journalistic ally (you)?
Regular readers may possibly recall that I am currently blogging from our vacation place/300-acre farm in Central Pennsylvania.
Yesterday, the sounds of low-flying aircraft were heard from our cabin in the morning, and when Karen went into town, late in the afternoon, to get mail from the post office, the small town of Tyrone was buzzing with stories of a shooting in our own neighborhood.
The 10/27 Daily Herald (serving Tyrone, Bellwood, and Surrounding Areas since 1866, but not on-line) reported:
State Police at Hollidaysburg have confirmed a shooting at 260 Van Scoyoc Hollow Road in Snyder Township this morning.
Unconfirmed reports say that a 13-year-old female Tyrone student has been shot in the chest or shoulder at her bus stop near the Tyrone Sportsman’s Club. Reportedly the weapon was believed to be a shotgun.
The Tyrone Area School District went on full exterior lockdown as a precaution.
The school web-site said: “Based on conversation with the state police we have been informed that there is no threat to the school. We are merely taking precautionary measures by instituting the secure exterior lockdown
Due to shooting in the community, which is currently believed to be a hunting accident, the district is currently in a secure exterior lockdown.”
State Police were still investigating the area with metal detectors and ran infrared by helicopter looking for possible suspects around the Sportsman’s Club at 10:30 a.m. The bus stop and a wooded area across the road were heavily investigated.
The victim has reportedly been taken to UPMC Altoona and is in stable condition. State Police and the Game Commission were still on the scene, the shooter was not located and no further information was available at the time of press other that it is believed to have been a hunting accident.
So… What struck me about all this was the craziness of a school lockdown off in the borough of Tyrone, miles away from the scene of a shooting thought to be a hunting accident. This kind of response typifies a contemporary style of “cover your ass at any cost” bureaucratic formalism which characteristically reacts, not so much to threats, as to memes, with preposterous and pretentious brain-damaged forms of completely useless gestures.
I needed, of course, to investigate the facts, so I phoned up the State Police in Hollidaysburg this morning, explaining that I was inquiring about the Snyder Township shooting in my capacity as an Internet journalist.
I learned that what happened was: a 12-year-old girl accidentally dropped a .22 rifle while in the process of putting it away inside her house. The rifle went off, and the girl was struck by a bullet in the abdomen. The young lady is recovering from her unfortunate accident in hospital.
Oddly enough, some news agency was actually reporting the story accurately this morning:
Police: Girl, 12, shot after mishandling rifle
TYRONE, Pa. (AP) – State police say a 12-year-old girl was accidentally shot in the abdomen after mishandling a .22-caliber rifle in her home.
Police aren’t releasing the name of the girl who authorities first believed had been shot outside her home Monday as she left for school about 7 a.m. That prompted the Pennsylvania Game Commission to investigate whether the girl might have been wounded by a hunter’s stray bullet.
But police now say the girl had grabbed the rifle and was returning it to a safe when it fell and discharged in her Snyder Township home.
The Tyrone Area School District was on an exterior lockdown after the shooting, meaning classes operated normally but no visitors were allowed on school property. The lockdown was lifted about 11 a.m. Monday.
Police were continuing to investigate Tuesday.
All of which demonstrates the propensity of all forms and flavors of American officialdom these days to react Pavlovianly to popular cultural memes (e.g., “Child Shooting!” — “School Shooting!”) demonstrating a pathologically overly-enthusiastic eagerness to wield authority, deploy personnel and equipment, play with gadgets and weapons, and to act out fantasies in public.
Yesterday, we had two government agencies sending armed men scurrying about the landscape, helicopters searching the forest with infrared, and a school system, miles away, undergoing lockdown (“Sorry, Mr. Jones, you can’t deliver milk for the school lunch today. We’re on lockdown!”), along with a grand search for an imaginary hunter, all in response to a one-party accident that took place inside a private home.
Perhaps we all tend to idealize the past. I could be wrong but, when I think back to when I was young, decades ago, I have a lot of trouble picturing the American adults I grew up among getting into lathers of this kind and responding to emergencies with so much panic and excessive overreaction in defiance of all the facts.
I do think that if somebody came along and said to Sister Daniel, the principal of St. George School in Shenandoah back in 1960, “Hey! you better lockdown the school. There has been a hunting accident over in Brandonville.”, Sister Daniel would have said, “What are you, some kind of a nut?”
Andrew Sullivan’s little munchkins are manning his blog while the great poof vacations on the Cape. Phoebe Maltz Bovy (who actually gets a byline — you go, girl!) yesterday identified two pieces so notable for thought crime that they may not be quoted or linked.
Piece 1 was a rant contending that “Transphobia is Perfectly Normal” by Gavin MacInnes at Thought Catalog. Bovy says:
I tend to agree with Allen, who writes:
I refuse to link to itâ€”thatâ€™s how bad it is. McInnes willfully misgenders all transgender people, Janet Mock included, while pathologizing them as â€œnutsâ€ and fixating at great length on the state of their genitals. Itâ€™s repulsive.
McInnesâ€™ piece doesnâ€™t deserve a formal response.
Yep. McInnes does not simply make an argument about gender identity that falls outside conventional liberal (and, as Allen notes, medical) norms. Such an argument might be buried below what it is he did write, but itâ€™s hard to say, given the muck surrounding any possible substance. Iâ€™m also not keen to drive traffic to something odious…
Actually, his editorial is pretty short, and most of it consists of intentionally-colorful-and colloquial rhetoric. But MacInnes does really make one serious argument: the argument that, when you play along with the particular fantasy and encourage all this, you are helping psychologically defective people harm themselves. Quote:
By pretending this is all perfectly sane, you are enabling these poor bastards to mutilate themselves. This insane war on pronouns is about telling people what to do. It may empower you to shut down a schoolâ€™s computer system because they phrased your gender wrong, but thatâ€™s just a game to you. To them, itâ€™s a life-changing event that fucks them up. To fight against transphobia is to justify trannies. To justify trannies is to allow mentally ill people to mutilate themselves. When your actions are getting people mutilated, youâ€™re at war with them.
The other case of forbidden speech was an August 1 editorial in the Times of Israel (republished here) by Jochanan Gordon, titled “When Genocide is Permissible.”
Gordon’s editorial was quickly removed from the Times of Israel web-site and, a bit later, also taken down from The Five Towns Jewish Times web-site with this explanation:
An article that was posted earlier today on our website dealt with the question of genocide in a most irresponsible fashion. We reject any such notion or discussion associated with even entertaining the possibility of such an unacceptable idea.
The piece should have been rejected out of hand by editors but escaped their proper attention. We reject such a suggestion unequivocally and apologize for the error.
In reality, though, Gordon’s sin consists entirely of his use of the word “genocide.” Gordon was really trying to justify the “disproportionate” Israeli response to Hamas’s rocket attacks. He implicitly (and most unwisely) accepts the accusation that what Israel has been doing in Gaza is a kind of genocide, and then argues that Israel is justified by its right of self defense. He never actually advocates real genocide. He just agrees to term what Israel is already doing “genocide,” and contends that Israel’s actions are necessary and ought to continue. He should have used a different word.
In 2008, James Poulos (who takes the aesthetic Bohemian approach to American political life) bought into Barack Obama’s BS. He knows better now and can be found wistfully imagining the fun if Dr. Thompson was still around to observe and comment on the hideous smoking-and-burning wreck that the current administration has made of both the American economy and democratic government. Picture Hunter Thompson, stoned on several different potent substances, writing up an essay, which Rolling Stone could not bring itself to decline, on Michelle Obama’s covert 50th Birthday Party, conducted in the manner of Elagabulus, but obligingly neglected by the lapdogs of the MSM.
Hunter Thompson is fun and easy to abuse for oneâ€™s own political purposes, but we are woefully all the poorer for having lost him in 2005, before he had a chance to discover that the power dynamic he railed against at the peak of his powers was still with us, smarter and dumber than ever. …
[T]here are now so few Democrats with even a wistful, nostalgic connection to the days when Freak Power thrived on the left. On a bad day, the landscape resembles a shameful two-species ecosystem: old corporatist behemoths casting long shadows over flea-bitten packs of communists so young and frustrated that theyâ€™re always on the verge of bursting into tears. …
We were on the back half of the Bush years. Something new, possibly even wonderful, would soon be in sight. Sure enough, the impossible happenedâ€”Hillary Clinton was beat, fair and square, by someone so sonorous about the possibilities of choice and resilience that he received the Kennedy stamp of approval, and then Americaâ€™s.
Innocent times. Now, that special someone has left the crown of hope in the gutter, overwhelmed and infected by the propaganda of neediness and choicelessness that fuels the rule of fear over so much of our daily life. Progress has somehow gone from an inspiring option to an individual mandateâ€”a grim necessity we are obliged to grind out. …
This was the touchstone of Obama â€™08. Now it goes all but untouched. There was a dazzling gonzo streak to Obamaâ€™s insurgent campaignâ€”a sense not of historical inevitability but of people, real people, going off on an incredible tangent, so crazy it just might work. The mood of the moment was nearly the opposite of todayâ€™s Obama, with his nationalistic claptrap about how â€œAmerica doesnâ€™t stand still.â€
No, Mr. President, we donâ€™t. We shift with unease from one foot to the other. We fretfully pace the floor. America is becoming a waiting room.
Weâ€™re waiting for more shoes to drop. The nagging, nervous energy that dominates our personal and political lives belies the harsh lesson of executive action: the more constant the crisis, the more impotent it is apt to grow.
Two hundred years ago, the French liberal Benjamin Constant saw the same pathology in Napoleon Bonaparteâ€™s waning days of despotism. Trapped in the cycle of permanent emergency and perpetual action, he wrote, â€œservitude has no rest, agitation no pleasure.â€
Steve Friess, in the characteristically glib and mendacious style of his branch of the journalistic profession, pointed out the obvious as cause for outrage and alarm, associating conventional organizational marketing practices, in the case of the NRA, with a currently popular journolist meme focusing on privacy paranoia in order to flimflam the rubes and suckers.
[T]he sort of vast, secret database the NRA often warns of already exists, despite having been assembled largely without the knowledge or consent of gun owners. It is housed in the Virginia offices of the NRA itself. The countryâ€™s largest privately held database of current, former, and prospective gun owners is one of the powerful lobbyâ€™s secret weapons, expanding its influence well beyond its estimated 3 million members and bolstering its political supremacy.
That database has been built through years of acquiring gun permit registration lists from state and county offices, gathering names of new owners from the thousands of gun safety classes taught by NRA-certified instructors and by buying lists of attendees of gun shows, subscribers to gun magazines, and more, BuzzFeed has learned.
The result: a big data powerhouse that deploys the same high-tech tactics all year round that the vaunted Obama campaign used to win two presidential elections.
The NRA is invading my privacy in the exact same fashion as the Wall Street Journal, L.L. Bean, Brooks Brothers, the Yale Club of New York, the Republican Party and all the other groups I belong to, publications I subscribe to, and merchants I shop with. The NRA has a membership/customer list and a marketing database in the same way every group or vendor does. Steve Freiss’s malarkey simply exists in order to flatter the prejudices and political animosity toward the NRA of the statist slave/emasculated urban metrosexual liberal community of fashion, whose members –as usual– bray accord in their own echo chamber. No one with common sense would buy into this nonsense for a New York minute.
Legal Insurrection commented today on the news report that everyone on the Internet was laughing about yesterday.
A news anchor with television station KTVU in California was duped into reading off the names of several purported pilots from Asiana Flight 214, which crash landed on a San Francisco runway on July 6th, killing three and injuring over 180 passengers.
The â€œpilot namesâ€ were so painfully obviously fake, itâ€™s hard to believe that this segment ever made it to air. I mean, with names like â€œCaptain Sum Ting Wongâ€ and â€œHo Lee Fukâ€ â€“ really?
The worst part about it is that the TV station did at least try to do some legwork and reached out to the National Transportation Safety Board for verification. The NTSB confirmed the names.
The National Transportation Safety Board issued a press release this evening acknowledging that a summer intern had erroneously confirmed four fake Asiana pilot names to Bay Area TV station KTVU. The release corroborates KTVU’s claim that an NTSB official had confirmed that “Ho Lee Fuk” and “Sum Ting Wong,” among others, had been manning Asiana flight 214, which crashed near San Francisco on Saturday.
and indignantly demanded: “if you’ve got any information on the intern behind this shitshow, email us.
Being public-spirited, I naturally forwarded to them this tip, tweeted by Iowahawk:
Slightly used motor and transmission of C250 Mercedes Benz
Jack Baruth, at The Truth About Cars, seemed just as broken-hearted as I am, but is just a trifle more tastefully discreet at concealing his feelings.
The writing-about-writing crowd is abuzz with discussion about the rather unusual death of Buzzfeed/RollingStone/Gawker writer Michael Hastings. Mr. Hastings, whose name is never mentioned in the press without the immediate mention that he was â€œthe fearless journalist whose reporting brought down the career of General Stanley McChrystalâ€, died in a single-car accident in Los Angeles yesterday morning. This in and of itself is not unusual, but the circumstances of the crash and its aftermath wonâ€™t do anything to quiet the conspiracy theorists who are already claiming that the military-industrial complex found a way to cap the guy. …
Mercedes-Benz USA is no doubt sweating bullets over this one. An eyewitness report says that Mr. Hastings was driving at an excessive rate of speed down a suburban street when his car â€œsuddenly jackknifedâ€ and hit a tree â€œwith the force of a bombâ€. The Benzo, which by the wheels and quarter-panel appears to be the relatively prosaic but cheerfully stylish C250 four-cylinder turbo coupe, proceeded to throw its powertrain out of the engine bay, immediately catch fire in a manner typically reserved for episodes of â€œMiami Viceâ€, and burn its driver until said driver was charred beyond recognition. …
Mr. Hastingsâ€™ aggressively Democrat-friendly storytelling has the Internet already considering the idea that his death was engineered somehow. I canâ€™t say itâ€™s totally unlikely. As noted above, the reported (and videotaped) behavior of the C250 was not in line with what weâ€™d expect. On the other hand, surely itâ€™s expected that a respected, mature writer on non-automotive topics wonâ€™t be barreling through a suburb so fast that any tree he hits will cause his car to burst into flames, right? Weâ€™ll keep an eye on this to see what, if anything, develops.
Michael Hastings was killed in a car crash in Los Angeles. The single car accident happened at about 0425. He crashed into a tree and was burned beyond recognition. He was 33.
Mr. Hastings was the war correspondent whose Rolling Stone article led to the firing of General Stanley McChrystal, who at the time was the top General in Afghanistan.
Although Hastings was widely read, no serious war correspondents took him seriously, or at least not the ones I know. … Hastings was like an undisciplined hitman with a pen and license to kill. One of his gonzo articles damaged the career and reputation of Lieutenant General Bill Caldwell, for no cause. My sense was that he picked fights with key people mostly to draw attention. Though Hastings was not respected among war correspondents, it is sad to see a man die so young so horribly. Just why he crashed into a tree at 0425 remains unknown. No doubt the conspiracies will begin to fly.
New Joke: What do you call a metrosexual Rolling Stone attack dog journalist’s explosive collision with an LA palm tree? A good start.