Discussion:
The Hollywood Conspiracy of Silence - It’s nearly impossible to believe the big stars who say they didm’t know about Harvey Weinsteim’s revolting acts.
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Ubiquitous
2017-10-12 01:05:01 UTC
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Accepting the 2005 Oscar he won for gaining a few pounds and being
tortured in Syriana, George Clooney made the case for Hollywood as
America’s moral conscience:

You know, we are a little bit out of touch in Hollywood
every once in a while, I think. It’s probably a good thing.
We’re the ones who talked about AIDS when it was just being
whispered, and we talked about civil rights when it wasn’t
really popular. And we, you know, we bring up subjects, we
are the ones — this Academy, this group of people gave
Hattie McDaniel an Oscar in 1939 when blacks were still
sitting in the backs of theaters. I’m proud to be a part
of this Academy, proud to be part of this community, and
proud to be out of touch. And I thank you so much for this.

Leaving aside that, on the night she won her Oscar for Gone with the
Wind, McDaniel was in fact made to sit away from her colleagues at a
table against a far wall, where was Clooney’s moral conscience for
the 20 years he was silent about the serial sexual predator who was
running amok _in his own industry_? How can Clooney, Meryl Streep,
and their peers continue to claim America’s moral high ground when
they simply shrugged at what was going on with their pal Harvey
Weinstein?

Their excuse — “We didn’t know” — doesn’t cut it. Clooney’s Ocean’s
Eleven-Twelve-Thirteen costar Brad Pitt knew very well what Harvey
Weinstein was up to. Pitt had once threatened to give Weinstein a
“Missouri whooping” after the producer sexually harassed his then-
girlfriend Gwyneth Paltrow in the 1990s. All of those months the
pair spent on sets together, they never thought to compare notes on
Weinstein’s behavior? Another Ocean’s buddy, Matt Damon, personally
called up Sharon Waxman, then a New York Times reporter, to
intercede against a story that would have been unflattering to
Weinstein. Was Damon also not curious about what was going on with
his producer-mentor? Did Damon also never talk to Pitt on the set of
the Ocean’s movies? Or on the set of The Departed, which Pitt
produced and Damon starred in? Or maybe in between takes on Happy
Feet 2, in which Pitt and Damon played a zany pair of gay
crustaceans?

Note the curiously limited wording of the denials from Damon and
Clooney, though. Entertainment reporters, tending to be both a) in
awe of their subjects and b) unschooled in Washington-style spot-
the-loophole weasel talk, haven’t quite nailed down what either of
them knew. “We know this stuff goes on in the world,” Damon said. “I
did five or six movies with Harvey. I never saw this. I think a lot
of actors have come out and said, everybody’s saying we all knew.
That’s not true. This type of predation happens behind closed doors,
and out of public view.” “I’ve never seen any of this behavior —
ever,” Clooney told The Daily Beast.

Of course Damon and Clooney never _saw_ the misbehavior. When
Weinstein wants a tête-à-tête with Ashley Judd in his bathrobe,
Damon and Clooney aren’t going to be invited along. The question is,
did they _know_ what Weinstein was up to? Clooney insists, “I had no
idea that it had gone to the level of having to pay off eight women
for their silence, and that these women were threatened and
victimized.” The comment seems to be limited to “these women” — the
eight who were paid off. Like a politician, Clooney is answering a
question nobody asked. Did he know Weinstein was inviting actresses
to business meetings that turned into bedroom meetings that turned
into sexual overtures with career implications? Weinstein has been,
for more than two decades, one of the most-talked-about figures in
Hollywood. Could news of such revolting acts really never have
reached Clooney’s ears? It seems more likely that Clooney was part
of a conspiracy of silence.

Movie Clooney is very interested in exposing the pernicious actions
of oil companies (Syriana), chemical companies (Michael Clayton), TV
hucksters (Money Monster), McCarthyism (Good Night, and Good Luck),
and the masterminds of the first Gulf War (Three Kings). Real-life
Clooney plugs his ears when people in Hollywood gossip about a
subject that has evidently been a hot topic of conversation since
Pauly Shore was considered a movie star. Weinstein’s habits were
such an open secret they were joked about on 30 Rock and the Oscar
telecast.

As for Streep, she no doubt believed she was speaking truth to power
when, upon receipt of a career honor at the Golden Globes ceremony
this year, she spent her entire speech heaving broadsides at
President Trump. Does Trump constitute power in her world, though?
It isn’t like Trump can do much of anything in response except send
a couple of grumpy tweets. Power, to Streep, is someone like
Weinstein, someone who could cast her or not cast her, possibly even
influence the hiring decisions of others. And Weinstein’s skill in
campaigning for Oscars is unparalleled. He was widely credited for
winning her a third Oscar for The Iron Lady, notably by Streep
herself, who said in her acceptance speech, “I want to thank God —
Harvey Weinstein.”

What are young actresses propositioned by Weinstein supposed to make
of it when the foremost practitioner of their profession, the one
they look up to more than any other and in whose footsteps they
would dearly love to follow, is praising the executive who behaved
so reprehensibly toward them? The message could hardly be more clear
to them that Weinsteinian behavior is simply the price that must be
paid.

Or are we to believe that Streep is the only actress on earth who
didn’t know what Weinstein was up to? The New Yorker story this week
contains this line about Lucia Stoller (now Evans), an actress who
says Weinstein forced her to give him oral sex. “The summer before
her senior year at Middlebury College,” we learn, the producer
approached the young woman at a party. “Evans wanted to be an
actress, and although she had heard rumors about Weinstein she let
him have her number.” Would Streep have us believe that _aspiring_
actresses _still in college_ knew more about industry players than
she did? Streep now says flatly, “I didn’t know about these other
offenses. . . . I did not know about his having meetings in his
hotel room, his bathroom, or other inappropriate, coercive acts.”
Think of all of the hundreds of actresses, and thousands of other
industry people, Streep has worked with over the years. None of this
ever came up?

For Clooney or Damon or Pitt or Streep to pick up a phone and call a
reporter to speak about Harvey Weinstein’s predatory behavior all
these years would have taken a minimal amount of guts. It could have
cost them gigs, or awards. The Weinstein debacle has implicated more
or less everyone in Hollywood who knew about the abhorrent behavior
and remained silent, which must mean just about everyone in
Hollywood. From now on the leading Hollywood personalities deserve
nothing but derision when they pretend to be courageous truth-
tellers. They are neither.
--
Dems & the media want Trump to be more like Obama, but then he'd
have to audit liberals & wire tap reporters' phones.
Alan Smithee
2017-10-13 23:29:34 UTC
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They knew but he was too powerful and many owed him.

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