September 30, 2009

"The French government has dropped its public support for Roman Polanski, saying the 76-year-old director 'is neither above nor beneath the law.'"

"The move follows a backlash against a campaign for Polanski's release, with several leading European politicians and cultural figures refusing to join."


miller said...

Good. And now the moral morons who want him to get off can get off their high horse.

edutcher said...

First Iran, now this!! Whoda thunkit??

Granted, they're not volunteering to blow up the Dinnerjacket's reactors or anything, but this is a step away from lining your roads with trees because the Wehrmacht likes to march in the shade.

WV "urantias" Something Andy Sullivan enjoys

susana said...

agree! Did anyone else notice that few days ago Susan Atkins (the charles manson robo-murder-bot of polanski's wife) dies of cancer in prison.

Freeman Hunt said...

Hooray! There is still sanity in the world.

Irene said...

That "Duke rape case" tag has resurfaced. I'm sorry to be the one that points it out, but I think it's worth correcting early before it becomes an issue.

Steven said...

Accidental "Duke rape case" tag.

t-man said...

Europe is becoming less and less "sophisticated" as time goes by.

LonewackoDotCom said...

Here's my suggestion for what you can do about the wider issue of Hollywood. I know that's a bit too austere for some.

chickenlittle said...

Expect cancellations en masse of glitterati summer vacations and holidays next year.

wv: ouiescon = oui, es can. "you can't make this stuff up"

Jason (the commenter) said...

Why aren't they supporting their intellectual elite? Gore Vidal must be furious.

Florida said...

I think that before your anger subsides, a letter to the Walt Disney Company might be in order.

Their contract employee - Whoppie Goldberg - has distinguished herself in this whole affair as perhaps the worst person in the world next to Polanski himself with her suggestion that what he did was not "rape."

For myself, I will never again allow my daughter to step foot on a property owned by the Walt Disney company or any of its subsidiaries unless and until they fire the reprehensible Whoppie Goldberg.

Recapping Ms. Goldberg's comments, she said, and I quote:

“I know it wasn’t rape-rape. I think it was something else, but I don’t believe it was rape-rape.”

Keep in mind that Polanski drugged the child before raping her.

Goldberg was trying to pin down the exact crime Polanski was charged with but she still seems to be suggesting that there are different levels of forcing someone to have sexual intercourse without their consent, that some rapes are better than others. What a dangerous and foolish thing to say.

Goldberg also said: “We’re a different kind of society. We see things differently. The world sees 13-year-olds and 14-year-olds in the rest of Europe… not everybody agrees with the way we see things…”

Ms. Goldberg does not reflect well on the Walt Disney company, and for someone who holds these beliefs about child rape, I believe she is incompatible as an employee of a company designed and marketed almost solely to children.

Shame on you, Disney.

Fire Whoopie Goldberg.

Penny said...

Roman Polanski took his best shot, one night, back then.

The cry heard round the world!

Penny said...

Oh look! Rome is burning!


Sorry, it's only Rome Polanski.


Lem said...

Florida's got her ducks in a row ;)

peter hoh said...

I know that a comment on an article is not really proof, but I've read a few similar to this, and it seems that a reporter should follow up on this. Here's the comment in response to this article.

There is no cultural divide. It’s a real shame for you (the journalist, Robert Marquand) to create such drama. Are you actually here in France? Do you read french? Do you speak french?

Well, I am here in Paris and a simple google using will show you that the FRENCH are outraged by their politicians and artists and wanna-be philosopher Bernard Henri Levy support of POLANSKI. These mis-guided people do not represent “the FRENCH”. Shame on you for writing such an untruthful ’story’.

traditionalguy said...

When the law is enforced the people rejoice. Polanski earned his judgement day the old fashioned way, he worked hard at violating the law.

Revenant said...

I just wanted to highlight this bit:

French film-maker Luc Besson, who directed the 1994 movie Leon, has also refused to lend his support [to Polanski].

Woo! Besson is a favorite director of mine. Glad to see he doesn't have his head up his posterior on this issue.

Duscany said...

When I lived in Berkeley the small nearby town of Kensington had a Unitarian Church. It used to be known as the First Unitarian Church of Kensington. FUC... Well, you get the idea.

Andrew D. said...

Hey, that's kind of like you backing down, Althouse, after being bitch slapped for your idiotic original post that was titled as if Polanski was being prosecuted for having sex with a 45-year-old woman.

peter hoh said...

Andrew, go back to that original post and read more closely. Read the last two sentences out loud if you must.

Jason said...

I think Whoopi was wrong. It was definitely "rape rape."

It wasn't "rape-ity rape rape," though.

Penny said...

"When the law is enforced the people rejoice."

Tg, you are a fine, fine man, but honestly, that is just plain full of doo doo.

The people don't rejoice when they or their neighbor are caught going 65 in a 55 mph zone, just for example. Most of us have broken that law, and never think twice.

I might be on shakey ground now, but I would venture a guess that most people have s t r e t c h e d tax law too. Just a little bit.

Do we do this because we set out to flaunt the rules or are the rules coming in to test us?

Only the thoughtful and honest people ask these kinds of questions, you know.

More and more are working under the premise of "Can I get away with this?"

Lyle said...

Thanks in part to the EU, and probably the internet, European elites aren't able to tell the people what to do as much as they use to. Europe is in for a see of change in the coming years. The people are beginning to see past the bullshit of the governing and elite social class in Europe. Nationalists groups are on the rise and polls show Europeans would support executing murderers, despite not a single EU country having a death penalty. Go Europe, go!

Lyle said...

Sea of change, not see of change.

Penny said...

"Can I get away with this?"

Well that depends, Roman Polanski.

Penny said...

When we allow rules and broken rules to substitute for judgment, no telling what might happen.

And PLEASE don't confuse me with questions of reasonableness or context or time frame or intent.

That's what the LAW is about, "she said".

Brian O'Connell said...

Regarding that linked BBC article, my god! What a piece of MSM crap.

"The move follows a backlash against a campaign for Polanski's release, with several leading European politicians and cultural figures refusing to join."

To read that, you'd think the reason for the French govt reversal was that a few members of the elite refused to go along- that that was the backlash. The rest of the article supports that idea.

But what actually happened was that French politicians and cineastes (!) were shocked when the French rabble refused to go along with the idea that the elite should meet a different standard of justice. The moviemakers probably don't care, but those pols have elections to worry about. 70% in favor of extradition I hear.

I shouldn't be surprised anymore, but I still am when I read these news items dispatched from alternate dimensions. On the other hand, I guess it wouldn't be in the BBC's interest to report on people overruling the geniuses in media.

Trav, (Corpse on the Right, COTR) said...

I just had a thought.

Wasn't it a bunch of hollywood types that said back in 2000 that if we voted for Bush it would be a vote to legalize rape?

I guess I just didn't realize it at the time, but I think that must have been an endorsement of Bush.

downtown said...

Well, INSERT TOPIC HERE the instant collapse and surrender of the French government when faced with a handful of nonogenarian film makers is entirely to be expected though it MAY be problematic, Yet ANN thinks BusHITLER and CheneySATAN should be slathered in butter by geishas until verily they are like unto FAJITAS for THE WORST TORTURE AND WAR CRIMES IN THE HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSE. And yes, those War Crimes, for they are guilty, are clearly WORSE than the HOLOCAUST and the DESTRUCTION of ALDERAAN and the United States is party to it all.

Fascist scum.


rhhardin said...

neither above nor beneath the law.

The elite place themselves southwest of the law.

Pogo said...

Whoopi Goldberg said it wasn't a "rape rape".

• Does the fact she entered Jack Nicholson's home because a famous movie director asked for a photo shoot, and gives her -a minor- alcohol and a quaalude, does that equal consent for sex?
• Did the 13 year old girl lead him on?
• Didn't she say 'no' forcefully or often enough?
• Was her faked asthma attack clearly a "yes"?
• Begging repeatedly to go home, is that more evidence of agreement than refusal?
• Crying afterward, and telling her parents immediately, does that mean 'she wanted it'?

It would be interesting to hear what a real rape rape is, because all these years I thought it was something else, and it appears I have taught my sons the wrong lessons.

How would Whoopi, child advocate, advise my sons and other young men on the ethics of sex with 13 year old girls? Plus, is there an upper age limit, or is 44 OK? 54?

Thanks for your advocacy, Whoopi.

Pogo said...

In a similar vein, Sharon Tate's death by Manson follower Susan Atkins wasn't really a murder murder. Plus, I mean, that was over 30 years ago. Clearly, she should have been set free.

Hollywood ethics could actually prove to be fun.
It's not theft theft.
It's not cheating cheating.
It's not abuse abuse.

All those years, wasted, when all I had to do to diminish any fault or crime was repeat the word!
Who knew?

traditionalguy said...

Penny...The act of issuing a Judgement that enforces a law, instead of one saying law does not apply for some reason, does in fact reassure people that they are living in a safe place. The gift of Justice is as much an assurance that bad conduct will be punished as it is that good conduct will not be punished. So, yes people rejoice when they see the law enforced. The attorney's job is to wrestle with the law and get away with the best outcome we can, and it is an adversarial system. But attorneys also get to see up close and personal that Judgements settling matters by law are a benefit to all involved.

Fred4Pres said...

That is because the French people are not quite as sophisticated as to ignore right and wrong as some would like us to believe.

You have to be a philopher like Bernard-Henri Lévy or a winner or runner up of the Cannes film festival to think Polanski is a victim.

CarmelaMotto said...

Did anyone notice that the BBC article never mentions that HE PLEAD GUILTY! The fact that he plead guilty of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor (drugged) is often not mentioned. He admits he did it. He just never paid the price for it because he ran.

The whole Hollywood defense of him is incredible.

Tibore said...

I think finally the French government has seen that it's best to support the enformcement of law and justice in cooperation with a western partner. We can rip on France and France can and will rip on us here stateside for hours on end, but on the issue of law and evading justice, I would hope that a western nation like France would demonstrate common sense. It may have taken a little bit, but they seem to have come to their senses.


Word Verification: vingence. No, I disagree. This is about justice, not vingence ;-)

Roger J. said...

Whoopie Goldberg--a role model for black women everywhere who probably receive this kind of abuse every day--what a piece of shit

Tibore said...

"The whole Hollywood defense of him is incredible."

Worse than that. It's unconsciounable. I don't think they realize it, but they're not being his friend. They're being his enabler. They're not merely allowing, but encouraging self destructive behavior on his part and are allowing him to evade his burden of responsibility on this issue.


Look, I differ from a whole lot of people on this in that I don't want to see the book get thrown at Polanski. Like I said in one of the past threads, if the prosecutor and judge simply allow time served and some sort of fine for the original rape case itself, I'm fine with it if the victim, prosecutor, and judge are fine with it too. Having those three parties agree to a decision is indeed a perfectly fine conclusion that preserves justice; I'm satisfied in whatever comes out as long as it's a fair judgement reached through the judicial process. But, he still needs to answer for the years he spent fleeing justice. And both violations need to be addressed in a court of law, not through some damn petition signed by the top 10% of wealth and celebrity, nor through dead tree rags and internet columns, but in front of a judge. I care that the process is followed correctly and properly, whatever the outcome. And the cause of that process not moving forward is not the US government or societal attitudes towards sexual relations with minors. It's Polanski's refusal to face a judge. Period. End of story.

Once he faces the music, then we can go back to talking about what good he's done for art and motion pictures. But until then, his films - great and entertaining, I readily testify - are irrelevant to the situation. So's the years he spent in exile. And so's any other excuse that can be delivered. The only point of contention is whether he faces a judge or not. And only from that point is any debate reasonable. Everything else, from the petition to "Free Polanski" to complaints about him being arrested "like a common terrorist" (I had no idea we sent US Rangers after him (*rolls eyes*)) are evasions and off topic. The only reasonable discussion is his appearance in front of a judge. And that's where the story regarding him begins and ends.

Shanna said...

The reason we can’t sentence Polanski to time already served and a fine is because he refused to come back and face the music. For that he deserves some time in jail. I don’t much care how much time it is, honestly. 1 month, 2 years, whatever… What I really, really don’t want is for this jerk to start running around America making movies and being on talk shows without having paid any price. I would be ok with permanent exile and a fine, maybe. I am not ok with him coming back here without paying for his crime in some way.

William said...

What Tibore said at 9:09. I am confused as to what should be the proper punishment of Polanski, but there can be no doubt that he deserves punishment. The fact that so many of my artistic betters feel otherwise is alienating. Milosevic did not commit a genocide genocide. We should not allow ourselves to get caught up in judgemental behavior about what was, after all, a time honored Balkan custom. Our refusal to see the delicate nuances of genocide speaks more to our puritanism than to the evil of the Balkans.

G Joubert said...

As for Whoopi, I can't help but wonder how much of what she says is just her effort to position herself to stay in the good graces of and otherwise suck up to all those heavy-hitter players out there (Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen, et al) who she believes she will need in the future. In other words, maybe it's some self-serving professional survival going on.

Steven said...

"[Hollywood Bigshot] says a man who drugs and rapes a 13-year-old should go free."

I think everyone who signed the petition that says "we demand the immediate release of Roman Polanski" can be said to have endorsed that proposition . . . at least under U.S. legal standards for libel.

Put that on billboards, newspaper ads, radio ads, stickers . . .