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  #1  
Old 05-18-2011, 10:00 PM
Bloggingheads Bloggingheads is offline
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Default Values Added: Queasy Alienated Despair Edition (Michelle Goldberg & Mollie Ziegler Hemingway)

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  #2  
Old 05-18-2011, 11:23 PM
joe_mask joe_mask is offline
 
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Default Re: Values Added: Queasy Alienated Despair Edition

First of all, nice conversation. Quick, topical and informative.

Quickly to Mitch Daniels, I am a Jacksonian Democrat and find Mr. Daniels perfectly compatible with all positions of professional responsibility. I have been impressed with his ability to surround himself with excellent people and their zeal, in turn, for good government. He is not your typical Republican because he believes government CAN work to better the lives of it's citizens and he seems damn good at getting 'er done.
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  #3  
Old 05-18-2011, 11:35 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Originally Posted by joe_mask View Post
Quickly to Mitch Daniels, I am a Jacksonian Democrat and find Mr. Daniels perfectly compatible with all positions of professional responsibility.
So if he were one of the candidates, would you vote for him?
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  #4  
Old 05-18-2011, 11:55 PM
ohreally ohreally is offline
 
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Default Re: Values Added: Queasy Alienated Despair Edition

I turned off after 5 minutes because the bullshit was insufferable. Go ahead and criticize French journalism all you want (I did so earlier) but your comments on French sexual mores is basement-level pop-psych drivel. The charge against DSK is that he is a rapist. What has this got to do with "sexual sophistication"? Unless you can show that a Frenchman is more likely to rape than an American (which you can't because rape is much more prevalent in the US), you have no case.

Finally, I don't think anyone despises BHL more than I do. But get your facts straight for crying out loud. I challenge you to tell me what BHL said or wrote to suggest that DSK should be treated differently because of his VIP status. BHL said the judge behaved as though pretending to treat DSK like anyone else but in fact did not. Criticism based on groundless slander is disgusting.

And not to mention Hemingway's comment that BHL defends rape for a living (no doubt thinking of Polanski). What a pathetic diavlog.

Good night ladies.
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  #5  
Old 05-19-2011, 12:27 AM
Hume's Bastard Hume's Bastard is offline
 
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Default Re: Values Added: Queasy Alienated Despair Edition

Quote:
Originally Posted by ohreally View Post
I turned off after 5 minutes because the bullshit was insufferable. Go ahead and criticize French journalism all you want (I did so earlier) but your comments on French sexual mores is basement-level pop-psych drivel. The charge against DSK is that he is a rapist. What has this got to do with "sexual sophistication"? Unless you can show that a Frenchman is more likely to rape than an American (which you can't because rape is much more prevalent in the US), you have no case.

Finally, I don't think anyone despises BHL more than I do. But get your facts straight for crying out loud. I challenge you to tell me what BHL said or wrote to suggest that DSK should be treated differently because of his VIP status. BHL said the judge behaved as though pretending to treat DSK like anyone else but in fact did not. Criticism based on groundless slander is disgusting.

And not to mention Hemingway's comment that BHL defends rape for a living (no doubt thinking of Polanski). What a pathetic diavlog.

Good night ladies.
bh.tv is going after Oprah's audience?!

I have to agree with you - and I had just tried to endure Althouse/Welch on the same subject. It occurs to me, if write on this Board, that Koreans are dictator-bait, I'm making an unwarranted generalization- and most people would just assume I'm a sloppy thinker and a jerk - and the latter is probably true. But, is a diavlog just a priviliged first-run at an article or other form of published expression that's beyond criticism? I know it's REALLY hard to get facts - it's not like everyone has a press pass or can spend hours in a day crunching stats and then translating them into some readable form most readers could digest. But, zero out of the last four 'heads of the type that doesn't even try seems a frightfully large number to have to endure.

That said, I'm not a prude. There has to be a way to tackle these issues. I'm a big fan of how Jean-Jacques Rousseau in "The Confessions" or Montesquieu in "The Persian Letters" combined high-and-low brow content. But, as I said, the last two diavlogs have not found that target.

And, getting back to reality, Matthew Lee - why hasn't he done a diavlog? - reports on a REAL possibility related to DSK's arrest: UNSG might not get a second term. See, Ann, Matt, Michelle, and Mollie, this is how you report on real news in a real world, not descend into gossip.

Last edited by Hume's Bastard; 05-19-2011 at 01:00 AM..
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  #6  
Old 05-19-2011, 12:42 PM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default Re: Values Added: Queasy Alienated Despair Edition

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Originally Posted by Hume's Bastard View Post
bh.tv is going after Oprah's audience?!.
If so, it is succeeding. When will the tearful confessions begin?

Quote:
That said, I'm not a prude. There has to be a way to tackle these issues. I'm a big fan of how Jean-Jacques Rousseau in "The Confessions" or Montesquieu in "The Persian Letters" combined high-and-low brow content. But, as I said, the last two diavlogs have not found that target..
Understatement of the week. Rousseau and Montesquieu could say daring, erotic and often profound things without departing from the most "chaste" French. I am afraid it cannot be done in the English language. And it certainly cannot be done by two would-be Oprahs.
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  #7  
Old 05-19-2011, 01:34 AM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Re: Values Added: Queasy Alienated Despair Edition

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Originally Posted by ohreally View Post
I turned off after 5 minutes because the bullshit was insufferable. Go ahead and criticize French journalism all you want (I did so earlier) but your comments on French sexual mores is basement-level pop-psych drivel.
Eh, your point is not without merit, but I think you're overreacting to a thirty-second passage. (And possibly a gratuitously click-baitish segment title.)
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  #8  
Old 05-19-2011, 01:44 AM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Originally Posted by bjkeefe View Post
Eh, your point is not without merit, but I think you're overreacting to a thirty-second passage. (And possibly a gratuitously click-baitish segment title.)
Although I have to admit that yet another ham-handed appeal to the bitter clingers from Mollie was almost enough to get me to click Stop.
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  #9  
Old 05-19-2011, 04:02 AM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Quote:
Finally, I don't think anyone despises BHL more than I do. But get your facts straight for crying out loud. I challenge you to tell me what BHL said or wrote to suggest that DSK should be treated differently because of his VIP status.
His entirely ludicrous article definitely leaves that impression. If he were to believe, as most people do, that we are all equal in the eyes of the law, suffice to say famous people should be treated like anyone else.

But instead he lionizes DSK as "the champion of the left," a great and "charming" man and casts him as the victim of the incident, a hero "still proud" who has been "thrown to the dogs" and finds himself at the mercy not only of a mere "chambermaid" (subtext: African immigrant rabble) whom we should presume is lying because she claims she entered the room alone and not as a member of a brigade, but also of another French opportuninst who "pretends to have been the victim of the same kind of attempted rape, who has shut up for eight years but, sensing the golden opportunity, whips out her old dossier and comes to flog it on television."

The "victim" has been "exposed to the slime of a public opinion drunk on salacious gossip and driven by who knows what obscure vengeance."

And worst of all now there is nobody to save Greece and "for the first time in history" refuse to sell out:

Quote:
His defeat would also be that of this great cause. It would be a disaster for this entire part of Europe and of the world, because the IMF, under his leadership and for the first time in its history, did not intend to sell out to the superior interests of Finance
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  #10  
Old 05-19-2011, 01:45 PM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default Re: Values Added: Queasy Alienated Despair Edition

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Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
His entirely ludicrous article definitely leaves that impression. If he were to believe, as most people do, that we are all equal in the eyes of the law, suffice to say famous people should be treated like anyone else.

But instead he lionizes DSK as "the champion of the left," a great and "charming" man and casts him as the victim of the incident, a hero "still proud" who has been "thrown to the dogs" and finds himself at the mercy not only of a mere "chambermaid" (subtext: African immigrant rabble) whom we should presume is lying because she claims she entered the room alone and not as a member of a brigade, but also of another French opportuninst who "pretends to have been the victim of the same kind of attempted rape, who has shut up for eight years but, sensing the golden opportunity, whips out her old dossier and comes to flog it on television."

The "victim" has been "exposed to the slime of a public opinion drunk on salacious gossip and driven by who knows what obscure vengeance."

And worst of all now there is nobody to save Greece and "for the first time in history" refuse to sell out:
Yes, we are all equal in the eyes of the law. So what do you know about either of these affairs that is unknown to French law or American law? The article may be ludicrous to you, but your comment is even more ludicrous because you know absolutely nothing at this point about what happened in either case. So: Shut the fuck up, until you have something to say that rises above political correctness and Oprah Winfrey wisdom.

Last edited by Florian; 05-19-2011 at 02:06 PM..
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  #11  
Old 05-19-2011, 02:05 PM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Default Re: Values Added: Queasy Alienated Despair Edition

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Originally Posted by Florian View Post
Yes, we are all equal in the eyes of the law. So what do you know about either of these affairs that is unknown to French law or American law? The article may be ludicrous to you, but your comment is even more ludicrous because you know absolutely nothing at this point about what happened in either case. So: Shut the fuck up.
What does Wonderment's complaint about BHL's assumptions and rhetoric have to do with what is understood by French or American law? In what sense are BHL's assertions deserving of greater deference than W's questions? Or do you believe that BHL ought to STFU too?
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  #12  
Old 05-19-2011, 02:14 PM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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What does Wonderment's complaint about BHL's assumptions and rhetoric have to do with what is understood by French or American law? In what sense are BHL's assertions deserving of greater deference than W's questions? Or do you believe that BHL ought to STFU too?
BHL did not express an opinion about what actually happened between DSK and the maid in New York. All he said about the French woman was that it was strange that she waited so long to file a complaint. The truth, until we hear DSK's version of the story, is that it impossible to know whether there was rape or not.
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  #13  
Old 05-19-2011, 02:43 PM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Florian View Post
BHL did not express an opinion about what actually happened between DSK and the maid in New York. All he said about the French woman was that it was strange that she waited so long to file a complaint. The truth, until we hear DSK's version of the story, is that it impossible to know whether there was rape or not.
I think it's fair to say that both BHL and W have apparently greater sympathy for different actors in this drama; but, it's also true that Wonderment hasn't expressed a direct opinion regarding the underlying facts of the case.
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  #14  
Old 05-19-2011, 02:51 PM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Originally Posted by AemJeff View Post
I think it's fair to say that both BHL and W have apparently greater sympathy for different actors in this drama; but, it's also true that Wonderment hasn't expressed a direct opinion regarding the underlying facts of the case.
Yes, he has expressed an opinion---indirectly:

Quote:
But instead he lionizes DSK as "the champion of the left," a great and "charming" man and casts him as the victim of the incident, a hero "still proud" who has been "thrown to the dogs" and finds himself at the mercy not only of a mere "chambermaid" (subtext: African immigrant rabble) whom we should presume is lying because she claims she entered the room alone and not as a member of a brigade, but also of another French opportuninst who "pretends to have been the victim of the same kind of attempted rape, who has shut up for eight years but, sensing the golden opportunity, whips out her old dossier and comes to flog it on television."

Wonderment knows nothing about France, DSK as a politician or what he has done in his career, and nothing about either of these cases. Yet he thinks he can somehow cast doubt on the credibililty of BHL by suggesting that he is a racist and an apologist for a rapist. This is just absurd and deserves nothing but contempt.
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  #15  
Old 05-19-2011, 03:16 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Quote:
Wonderment knows nothing about France, DSK as a politician or what he has done in his career, and nothing about either of these cases. Yet he thinks he can somehow cast doubt on the credibililty of BHL by suggesting that he is a racist and an apologist for a rapist. This is just absurd and deserves nothing but contempt.
I am willing to stipulate that France is a great culture and nation and that DSK is a marvelous politician. Perhaps, as BHL suggests, without him Europe would be lost.

BHL does have a history of defending his buddy rapist Polanski, so he doesn't have a lot of credibility here. It was very ill-advised to immediately do a DSK puff piece. I'm glad he's criticizing prep walks, however; some good could come of that criticism.
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Old 05-19-2011, 03:32 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Quote:
it's also true that Wonderment hasn't expressed a direct opinion regarding the underlying facts of the case.
I've been careful not to express an opinion about the alleged perp's actual guilt or innocence. My only opinion about the underlying facts is that I find entirely preposterous the idea that he was framed by the classic "right-wing conspiracy."
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  #17  
Old 05-19-2011, 03:03 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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So what do you know about either of these affairs that is unknown to French law or American law? The article may be ludicrous to you, but your comment is even more ludicrous because you know absolutely nothing at this point about what happened in either case. So: Shut the fuck up, until you have something to say that rises above political correctness and Oprah Winfrey wisdom.
I don't really understand your first sentence so it's hard to comment. Do bear in mind, however, that I am not prohibited from having an opinion about what I read in the newspaper. I am not a juror, witness, police officer, judge or journalist.

Most people I've read on the topic are NOT commenting about the alleged perp's guilt or innocence. They are commenting about societal perceptions, attitudes and matters of law. BHL is particularly obnoxious because he rushes to the defense of the person's character (suggesting he would never lie, which is precisely what he must be doing if the charges are true), much as he did in his defense of Art in the Polanski case of the rape of a 13-year-old child.

My objection to Levi's comments are not on matters of law or procedure: Levi not only has a right to object to perp walks and tabloid accounts of crimes, he's absolutely right to do so. Perp walks are disgusting and prejudicial to defendants. (I notice he said nothing, however, about the FACT that French media released the victim's name, which of course doesn't faze him because she is, after all, "a chambermaid" who is either lying or so stupid that she went into a great man's room alone without a "brigade" )

I would like to hear you expand, however, on what you mean by "political correctness" and Oprah Winfrey wisdom. By all means, don't STFU, and do walk headlong into that one.
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  #18  
Old 05-19-2011, 03:25 PM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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I don't really understand your first sentence so it's hard to comment. Do bear in mind, however, that I am not prohibited from having an opinion about what I read in the newspaper. I am not a juror, witness, police officer, judge or journalist.

Most people I've read on the topic are NOT commenting about the alleged perp's guilt or innocence. They are commenting about societal perceptions, attitudes and matters of law. BHL is particularly obnoxious because he rushes to the defense of the person's character (suggesting he would never lie, which is precisely what he must be doing if the charges are true), much as he did in his defense of Art in the Polanski case of the rape of a 13-year-old child.

My objection to Levi's comments are not on matters of law or procedure: Levi not only has a right to object to perp walks and tabloid accounts of crimes, he's absolutely right to do so. Perp walks are disgusting and prejudicial to defendants. (I notice he said nothing, however, about the FACT that French media released the victim's name, which of course doesn't faze him because she is, after all, "a chambermaid" who is either lying or so stupid that she went into a great man's room alone without a "brigade" )

I would like to hear you expand, however, on what you mean by "political correctness" and Oprah Winfrey wisdom. By all means, don't STFU, and do walk headlong into that one.
It is pretty obvious what I mean by political correctness. You have already decided that a poor, immigrant chambermaid must be telling the truth and that a powerful French politician, known for his extramarital affairs, must be lying. You have also suggested that BHL is a racist and an apologist for rape.

Until we know whether there was a rape, there is no point in carrying on this discussion. By the way, the translation of the French text is inaccurate. BHL did not say that the French woman "pretended" that she had been a victim of attempted rape. He said: "Ellle prétend avoir été victime d'une tentative de viol," which means: She claims to have been the victim of an attempted rape.

Last edited by Florian; 05-19-2011 at 03:42 PM..
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  #19  
Old 05-19-2011, 03:37 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Until we know whether there was a rape, there is no point in carrying on this discussion.
And once that is determined there won't be any need for discussion either. The guy will go to jail or be released and that will be it.
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Old 05-19-2011, 09:05 AM
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I turned off after 5 minutes because the bullshit was insufferable. Go ahead and criticize French journalism all you want (I did so earlier) but your comments on French sexual mores is basement-level pop-psych drivel. The charge against DSK is that he is a rapist. What has this got to do with "sexual sophistication"? Unless you can show that a Frenchman is more likely to rape than an American (which you can't because rape is much more prevalent in the US), you have no case.
Interesting quote in Time Mag:

"If I try transposing the situation in New York on Sunday to France, I just can't do it," says Diallo. "Not only because the woman is black and apparently an immigrant. But also because she's a housekeeper. Perhaps even more than her race, her station in society would probably prevent authorities [in France] from taking her accusations against a rich and powerful man seriously. Racism is on the rise here again, but class discrimination has never gone away." -- Rokhaya Diallo, president of Les Indivisibles, an association that promotes diversity in France.

I guess if you define 'sexual sophistication' as "If you're rich/powerful/famous/a celebrated artist, it's OK to rape the helpless" then these two women aren't as far off as you claim. If only we could be more like those sophisticated euros.....
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Old 05-19-2011, 09:23 AM
miceelf miceelf is offline
 
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Originally Posted by harkin View Post

I guess if you define 'sexual sophistication' as "If you're rich/powerful/famous/a celebrated artist, it's OK to rape the helpless" then these two women aren't as far off as you claim. If only we could be more like those sophisticated euros.....
Sure. and if you define "horse pucks" as "apples" then a waldorf salad would taste quite a bit different.

I have trouble imagining a listener who would, unguided, assume "sexual sophistication" means "it's ok to rape the helpless if you are powerful."
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Old 05-19-2011, 11:16 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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I guess if you define 'sexual sophistication' as "If you're rich/powerful/famous/a celebrated artist, it's OK to rape the helpless" then these two women aren't as far off as you claim. If only we could be more like those sophisticated euros.....
Here's what I heard when these two were discussing sophistication.

Michelle said several times that we shouldn't judge a person's political qualifications by their sexual/marital behavior. That's where the euro sophistication/Bill Clinton bit came in. Mollie then would say that character is very important and it's only natural that people be judged by things like how that behave in their marriage...that this is a useful tool with which to judge politicians.

Then Michelle would grimace and say she didn't agree with this exactly, try to characterize what she was hearing Mollie say that she disagreed with and then Mollie would come back and try to reiterate her point. I just think Michelle was awfully uncomfortable using a metric such as marital faithfulness as a standard, while Mollie thinks its important.

This back and forth went on for seven minutes by my count 10:00-17:00.
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  #23  
Old 05-21-2011, 12:24 PM
basman basman is offline
 
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Originally Posted by ohreally View Post
I turned off after 5 minutes because the bullshit was insufferable. Go ahead and criticize French journalism all you want (I did so earlier) but your comments on French sexual mores is basement-level pop-psych drivel. The charge against DSK is that he is a rapist. What has this got to do with "sexual sophistication"? Unless you can show that a Frenchman is more likely to rape than an American (which you can't because rape is much more prevalent in the US), you have no case.

Finally, I don't think anyone despises BHL more than I do. But get your facts straight for crying out loud. I challenge you to tell me what BHL said or wrote to suggest that DSK should be treated differently because of his VIP status. BHL said the judge behaved as though pretending to treat DSK like anyone else but in fact did not. Criticism based on groundless slander is disgusting.

And not to mention Hemingway's comment that BHL defends rape for a living (no doubt thinking of Polanski). What a pathetic diavlog.

Good night ladies.
Quite so!

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  #24  
Old 05-19-2011, 01:50 AM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default This just in

Posted eight minutes ago by the NYT (so maybe it's been known for a while from elsewhere):

Quote:
Dominique Strauss-Kahn Resigns From I.M.F.
Nothing of substance under the headline, if you're even casually familiar with the news from the past couple of days.

[Added] But if it's substance you want, see Ken Layne. He connects Dominatrix or whatever his name is to bin Laden, discoveries of new planets, Obama's looming Mideast speech, and the even more looming end of the world. Also, Newt Gingrich. And Donald Trump, also too.

How this guy hasn't been bought out by WND, I'll never know.
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  #25  
Old 05-19-2011, 05:14 AM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Nothing of substance under the headline...
You didn't think "infinite sadness" was substantial?

Free Internet make-believe publicist advice: If you don't want your sex crime to sound pathetically narcissistic and hideously megalomaniacal, avoid the adjective "infinite" to describe your emotions.
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  #26  
Old 05-19-2011, 03:49 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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You didn't think "infinite sadness" was substantial?

Free Internet make-believe publicist advice: If you don't want your sex crime to sound pathetically narcissistic and hideously megalomaniacal, avoid the adjective "infinite" to describe your emotions.
I didn't think there was much wrong with saying that he was that sad about having to resign his position.

Not that it matters for this point, but just because I said earlier that there was nothing of substance under the headline, I do want to point out that what was once just a couple of paragraphs at that link has been considerably fleshed out in the hours since I first posted it.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:04 AM
miceelf miceelf is offline
 
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Default Re: This just in

I guess there's some solace to be taken in the fact that Strauss-Kahn is being defended, not just by the usually pinko francophiles, but also by at least one conservative.

Win Ben Stein's Credibility:

http://spectator.org/archives/2011/0...nnocent-anyone
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  #28  
Old 05-20-2011, 01:26 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Originally Posted by miceelf View Post
I guess there's some solace to be taken in the fact that Strauss-Kahn is being defended, not just by the usually pinko francophiles, but also by at least one conservative.

Win Ben Stein's Credibility:

http://spectator.org/archives/2011/0...nnocent-anyone
There aren't many people who have a lower estimation of Ben Stein than me, but when I saw mention of that, I decided not to pass it along, even though it made me laugh. The key for me is this: either you believe in presumption of innocence or you do not, and if you do, you believe it applies even when the accused and his most prominent defenders seem particularly unsavory.
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Old 05-20-2011, 02:02 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Jon Stewart did a funny bit last night on Levy and Stein.

Presumption of innocence is a given. What Levy and Stein have done, however, is provide (unhelpful) defense strategies for the alleged perp. Levy, for example, both bashed the earlier accusation in France as an opportunist and claimed something was sinister about the idea that one maid entered the room rather than a brigade of two (sic).
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Old 05-20-2011, 02:10 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
Jon Stewart did a funny bit last night on Levy and Stein.

Presumption of innocence is a given. What Levy and Stein have done, however, is provide (unhelpful) defense strategies for the alleged perp. [...]
That much I am willing to agree with, even before anything is settled in court. The "unhelpful" part, I mean. I don't much care for the implication I take that you think it is wrong for anyone to stand up for someone who is accused of something, however.

I may be wrong about this, but I have a memory of your being fairly heated in defense of Michael Jackson, right after he died, due to the lack of convictions in his case. I wonder at this apparent inconsistency.
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Old 05-20-2011, 05:07 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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I don't much care for the implication I take that you think it is wrong for anyone to stand up for someone who is accused of something, however.
It's fine to stand up for one's friends; the problem is smearing a sexual assault victim while doing so. This is a major reason why women don't report sexual assaults: they will be treated as whores, liars, opportunists and/or crazy.

It's not easy to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in a sexual assault he said/she said case, especially when the alleged perp is well-connected, rich and has philosophers defending him.

Commenters here seem to be misunderstanding the presumption of innocence. It is a judicial presumption. It doesn't mean that you and I have some moral duty -- unless we are jurors --- to presume in our own minds that the accused is innocent. I'm sure if you were the victim of a violent crime you would not say, "Even though I have two broken arms from the assault, I'm assuming my attacker is innocent because that's how our legal system works."

Quote:
I may be wrong about this, but I have a memory of your being fairly heated in defense of Michael Jackson, right after he died, due to the lack of convictions in his case. I wonder at this apparent inconsistency.
I don't really remember, but I think you may be confusing this with my support for the OJ Simpson VERDICT. I think OJ was definitely the murderer, but I also think the jury got the acquittal right because they couldn't trust the police evidence as presented at trial beyond a reasonable doubt.
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Old 05-20-2011, 06:15 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
It's fine to stand up for one's friends; the problem is smearing a sexual assault victim while doing so. [...]
Agreed, in principle.

However, I would say that the accusation of sexual assault is also a pretty loaded thing. People who are found innocent (strictly speaking: "not guilty" or who have the charges dismissed) of such accusations are almost never freed from the taint of the accusations. I'm not trying to say that the two are equal, particularly given the long and sordid history of getting actual offenders off by disgraceful treatment of the victims, but I am saying that it is not a one-way street.

Quote:
Commenters here seem to be misunderstanding the presumption of innocence. It is a judicial presumption. It doesn't mean that you and I have some moral duty -- unless we are jurors --- to presume in our own minds that the accused is innocent.
I don't agree. While I will of course acknowledge that there is a strict technical sense to the phrase, I think it also has a larger meaning. I think it behooves anyone who believes in that principle to act in accordance with it, at least to the extent of resisting the temptation to condemn the accused in the court of public opinion.

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I'm sure if you were the victim of a violent crime you would not say, "Even though I have two broken arms from the assault, I'm assuming my attacker is innocent because that's how our legal system works."
Correct. Because in that case, I would have first-hand knowledge of the event in question. I doubt any of the commenters here can say the same about what happened in that hotel room, or between DSK and the other woman (women?) now accusing him.

Quote:
I don't really remember, but I think you may be confusing this with my support for the OJ Simpson VERDICT. I think OJ was definitely the murderer, but I also think the jury got the acquittal right because they couldn't trust the police evidence as presented at trial beyond a reasonable doubt.
No, I wasn't thinking about OJ. I was thinking about Michael Jackson. As I recall it, you took quite heated exception with people who were referring to/alluding to him as a pedophile.

No big deal either way. I just wondered, if my memory was correct, if something had since caused you to somewhat change your thinking about presumption of innocence.
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Old 05-20-2011, 06:46 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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No, I wasn't thinking about OJ. I was thinking about Michael Jackson. As I recall it, you took quite heated exception with people who were referring to/alluding to him as a pedophile.
Ok, I don't remember clearly either, but it's possible since I think it's wrong to call MJ a pedophile or OJ a murderer (even though he was found "responsbile" for the deaths of Goldman and Browne-Simpson in a civil suit) or to call Strauss-Kahn a rapist (which I have not done and will not do).

I don't think it's inconsistent, however, to hold beliefs regarding those person's guilt, i.e., beliefs that don't meet the legal standard for guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

So based on my knowledge and intuitions, I personally believe that OJ Simpson killed two people. I personally believe that MJ abused boys. With Strauss-Kahn I haven't formed an opinion, but I'm quite satisfied that the police and prosecutors acted properly in meeting a "probable cause" standard, once they collected evidence that indicated the victim had been sexually assaulted and once the alleged perpetrator was identified by her in the police lineup.

In other words, a by-the-books arrest and an indictment is not nothing.
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Old 05-20-2011, 06:54 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
Ok, I don't remember clearly either, but it's possible since I think it's wrong to call MJ a pedophile or OJ a murderer (even though he was found "responsbile" for the deaths of Goldman and Browne-Simpson in a civil suit) or to call Strauss-Kahn a rapist (which I have not done and will not do).

I don't think it's inconsistent, however, to hold beliefs regarding those person's guilt, i.e., beliefs that don't meet the legal standard for guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

So based on my knowledge and intuitions, I personally believe that OJ Simpson killed two people. I personally believe that MJ abused boys. With Strauss-Kahn I haven't formed an opinion, but I'm quite satisfied that the police and prosecutors acted properly in meeting a "probable cause" standard, once they collected evidence that indicated the victim had been sexually assaulted and once the alleged perpetrator was identified by her in the police lineup.

In other words, a by-the-books arrest and an indictment is not nothing.
I don't disagree. But I do think there's a significant difference between forming a personal opinion and publicly lobbying or agitating or whatever you want to call it, whether these actions take the form of smearing the accuser or the accused.

I'd also observe that there is a difference -- which you yourself exhibit, to your credit -- between forming an opinion about someone after a lengthy trial has been conducted, along with all of the investigative journalism that has been made available, and forming (and expressing) one right after an arrest has been made.
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Old 05-20-2011, 06:16 PM
racoon33 racoon33 is offline
 
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Commenters here seem to be misunderstanding the presumption of innocence. It is a judicial presumption. It doesn't mean that you and I have some moral duty -- unless we are jurors --- to presume in our own minds that the accused is innocent. I'm sure if you were the victim of a violent crime you would not say, "Even though I have two broken arms from the assault, I'm assuming my attacker is innocent because that's how our legal system works."
Presumption of innocence outside the legal system matters insofar as it prevents repercussions on other facets of the accused person's life before a judge or jury come to a verdict.
I would argue that the forced resignation is perfect evidence of how American society automatically sides with the accuser. Hence the accusatorial bias identified by Levy. This sort of cultural slant is incredibly easy to take advantage of - hence the suspicion of opportunism, which incidentally falls on women as the most frequent victims of sexual assault. Its sort of like outsourcing of justice but without due process - a society that allows/seeks punitive consequences to allegations of assault before guilt is established.

Last edited by racoon33; 05-20-2011 at 06:20 PM..
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Old 05-20-2011, 09:53 PM
ledocs ledocs is offline
 
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I would argue that the forced resignation is perfect evidence of how American society automatically sides with the accuser. Hence the accusatorial bias identified by Levy.
I cannot agree. DSK would have been forced to resign whether or not he is ever convicted. His legal culpability is beside the point. He already had one big strike against him at the IMF as regards his sexual conduct. In the Kobe Bryant case, a not dissimilar case, American society did not automatically side with the accuser, because Bryant had no prior publicized history of problems with women. The IMF is an international institution, not an American one, with its own policies and politics. I have just read that DSK would have been forced to resign because of the affair with the Hungarian economist had he been the CEO at the World Bank.

I will be quite surprised if this case goes to trial. The risks of conviction for DSK are too great, I suspect, the potential penalties far too severe, now there will be a back-channel deal between the two governments, the woman will somehow be paid off, I think he will plead guilty to much reduced charges.
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Old 05-20-2011, 11:20 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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The risks of conviction for DSK are too great, I suspect, the potential penalties far too severe, now there will be a back-channel deal between the two governments
,

DSK is not JHChrist. He'll be treated just like any other defendant. If anything, the prosecution will be especially vigorous and rigorous rather than lax. The case will be more strictly supervised than usual to make sure there's not even the slightest doubt about the ongoing legitimacy of the process or a hint of back-channel influence peddling.

Quote:
the woman will somehow be paid off, ,,,,
I very much doubt that. I don't want to go into hypothetical crimes she might commit to cash in. Suffice to say the prosecution has plenty of safeguards against something like that happening, including physical evidence from the crime scene and her sworn testimony.

Besides, the victim can both get justice in court and be compensated financially via civil litigation.

Quote:
I think he will plead guilty to much reduced charges.
Probably. That is a typical outcome of most criminal proceedings. But we don't know enough about the crime scene evidence yet to guess how strong the case is and how severe the eventual penalty will be, if he is guilty. If there is proof that she resisted (bruises, his blood under her fingernails, etc.), it's not going to be easy to plead it down to a misdemeanor.
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Old 05-21-2011, 05:32 AM
ledocs ledocs is offline
 
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It is possible that "justice" will be allowed to run its course in the "normal" ways. But I don't think it will. The "payoff" to the woman would have to be handled in a very cloak-and-dagger and discrete way, that's true, and it would occur sometime in the future, not now. It could take forms that are not cash. If there are strong diplomatic reasons for avoiding a criminal trial, there are also strong diplomatic reasons for avoiding a civil trial, in a way similar to what happened in the Kobe Bryant case. There, the prosecution ended up dropping its charges and Bryant reached a pretrial settlement with his accuser in the civil matter.

But let's look at this the other way. You agree that DSK will probably end up pleading to reduced charges. But this contradicts the fact that you don't know much about the evidence or the strength of the prosecution's case, since you also say that he will not plead to reduced charges if the case against him is strong, because the prosecution will either be doing things by the book or even overcompensating to demonstrate that all defendants are equal before the law. My sense is that it would be too humiliating for both France and the US to have DSK rotting in jail for very long, anything over two years. Secondly, there will be a strong temptation on the part of the French government to avoid a public recitation of the prosecution's case, and the US will be sensitive to France's concerns.

I don't know what will happen. I am not aware of any recent similar case, whether in America or the West generally, of a foreign dignitary or active foreign politician being prosecuted for a serious crime. My sense is that the trial goes forward only if DSK's defense team thinks he has a very good chance of winning acquittal, i.e. if the prosecution's case is weak. It is more likely that some way will be found for both countries to save face, and I agree that that way is not obvious, it will be difficult and delicate. It's just that a trial would be substantially worse for everyone involved, quite possibly including the accuser, almost regardless of the underlying facts. If DSK were accused of a serious financial crime under American law, then I think the trial might well go forward.
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Old 05-21-2011, 06:04 AM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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If there are strong diplomatic reasons for avoiding a criminal trial, there are also strong diplomatic reasons for avoiding a civil trial, in a way similar to what happened in the Kobe Bryant case. There, the prosecution ended up dropping its charges and Bryant reached a pretrial settlement with his accuser in the civil matter.
Maybe. My intuitions on this case are very different from yours. It strikes me as extremely unlikely that there would be diplomatic intervention.

The Bryant case (which was completely apolitical, of course) may be vaguely similar (he said/she said; consensual or not?), but it had lots of unique problems for the prosecution. The SK case may also turn out to be problematical, but prosecutors will do everything in their power to prevent a Kobe-type outcome.

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My sense would be that it would be too humiliating for both France and the US to have DSK rotting in jail for very long, anything over two years. Secondly, there will be a strong temptation on the part of the French government to avoid a public recitation of the prosecution's case, and the US will be sensitive to France's concerns.
Again, this is a matter before a court in NYC. It's not a federal case, and even if it were, I don't believe strings are pulled the way you suggest. The only route out if he's convicted and has the conviction(s) upheld on appeal would be a pardon or commutation from the governor of NY or the President of the USA. Again, wildly unlikely.

Quote:
If DSK were accused of a serious financial crime under American law, then I think the trial might well go forward.
Again, I think you are grossly underestimating the gravity of the charges. Sexual violence is very serious business.

A plea agreement may be, as you suggest, a win for everybody, provided the punishment is still consistent with the crime and not viewed as a slap on the wrist.

It's way too early to predict what will happen. We'll have to see what the quality of the evidence is.
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Old 05-21-2011, 06:20 AM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
Again, I think you are grossly underestimating the gravity of the charges. Sexual violence is very serious business.

A plea agreement may be, as you suggest, a win for everybody, provided the punishment is still consistent with the crime and not viewed as a slap on the wrist.

It's way too early to predict what will happen. We'll have to see what the quality of the evidence is.
Yes, we are eagerly awaiting to hear how the hotel maid was forced to perform oral sex. That will be a most interesting discussion.
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