‘HYPOCRISY AND COWARDICE AT HEART OF THE ESTABLISHMENT’
If Tinseltown is so horrified, why did all this take so long?
HE’S ‘a wonderful human being’ and a ‘good man’; a man of profound ‘passion’ and ‘commitment’; even, jokingly, ‘God’.
Who is this paragon of virtue who has been so lavishly praised? Step forward serial sexual abuser and multi-millionaire alleged rapist, Mr Harvey Weinstein.
And who are those who have been fawning over him for the past 30 years while he carried on with his depraved personal life?
The luvvies who make up Hollywood’s finest, as well as their close friends and allies on the political left. People who are forever flaunting their liberal values in our faces. Weinstein has been lauded and sucked up to in a staggering 34 different Oscar acceptance speeches. It was former First Lady Michelle Obama herself who hailed this bloated, bullying, sexually perverted film mogul ‘a wonderful human being’ and a ‘good man’.
He is known to have dined at least ten times at the White House during Barack Obama’s tenure. In return, Weinstein donated millions to the Democrats – one estimate reckons some $2 million in the past 15 years.
Oh, and the Obamas’ 18-year-old daughter worked for a year as an intern at Weinstein’s company. How very cosy it all was.
So this story isn’t just about one man’s sleazy private life, his horrible attitudes towards women, and his spectacular fall from grace.
It’s about how the entire jetsetting Hollywood Establishment – its holier-than-thou stars, its moneymen, the gushing liberal political class and media – did nothing to stop the grotesque behaviour of one of its most powerful moguls.
The hypocrisy, the moral depravity, the culture of lies of that Establishment have never been so starkly exposed to the disgusted public gaze as it is today.
For Weinstein, it doesn’t mean he is repenting in sackcloth and ashes, of course. It means he is flying off in his private jet to check into ‘rehab’ in Europe.
BECAUSE apparently it’s Weinstein himself who is in need of expensive help here – not the young women he has been bullying and abusing for decades.
In the meantime, those who previously danced attendance upon him or were photographed with him, are desperately trying to preserve their own careers, by scrabbling to distance themselves from him like rats in a terrier pit.
One by one they’re lining up to condemn the man they worked with, dined with and lauded to the starry skies at the Oscars.
Oxford fellow Emma Watson, who has addressed the UN itself on gender equality, professes herself horrified at the revelations. So too does anti-rape campaigner Angelina Jolie, along with Gwyneth Paltrow, Rosanna Arquette and Mira Sorvino, all of whom have now said he made approaches to them some years ago – yet chose to keep quiet about it.
We have to take other stars at their word when they say they knew nothing of his ‘shocking’ behaviour, even though Weinstein’s habit of routinely forcing himself on young women – among his latest accusers is Laura Whitmore, who in the last few days described her encounters with him as ‘creepy’ and ‘unprofessional’ – was said to be common knowledge in the film industry.
For the broader, creative and arts establishment outside of the US also must take its share of the blame. Weinstein was awarded a CBE, made a fellow of the British Film Institute and a member of Bafta. Can it really be the case that no one in any of these institutions had heard of his predatory behaviour?
Did Tina Brown, New York’s publishing queen and wife of former Sunday Times editor Sir Harold Evans, not know about Weinstein’s reputation?
After all, she was poached from the New Yorker by Weinstein and his brother Bob to edit their magazine, Talk, in the 1990s – but only now has she publicly turned against her former boss, declaring: ‘Honour to the brave women who spoke . . .’
Indeed, it is only those brave women who initially blew the whistle on Weinstein, such as actress Ashley Judd, knowing that it could ruin their careers for ever, who emerge with any credit here.
Others come out of this ugly story with no credit at all.
And what makes their festering sanctimony so much worse is the way Hollywood’s tolerance of Weinstein’s activities contrasts so dramatically with its hysterical condemnations of Donald Trump.
True, Trump’s record with women is hardly unblemished, but if Hollywood’s luminaries are so upset by him, why was Weinstein allowed to get away with it for so long?
YouTube commentator Paul Joseph Watson has wittily dubbed this Trump Derangement Syndrome: the tendency of lefty luvvies to be so blinded by their foaming hatred for the current President that they can see no evil anywhere else. Let us not forget the ceremony when actresses including Patricia Arquette, winner of the best supporting actress award, used their speeches to champion women’s rights at what became know as the ‘feminist Oscars’ in 2015 – the same year Weinstein allegedly pushed a female assistant ‘into giving him a massage while he was naked, leaving her “crying and very distraught”’, according to the New York Times.
Hollywood’s rank hypocrisy over the Weinstein affair is echoed among the luvvies’ good friends on the political left. Another ardent campaigner for women, Hillary Clinton, remained silent for five whole days after the scandal broke before condemning her generous political funder.
Barack Obama, usually so full of high-flown words, and his wife Michelle, also took days to condemn Weinstein, although Michelle was only too happy recently to aim a sharp speech at Donald Trump about wealthy and powerful men abusing women.
Most egregious of all, perhaps, is that queen bee of Hollywood herself, Meryl Streep. She spent nearly her entire recent Oscar speech attacking the President, and saying she had spent much of her time lately in ‘screaming and lamentation’ – while simultaneously referring adoringly to Harvey Weinstein as ‘God’.
Mamma Mia! How’s that for feminist values?
BUT if Streep is so concerned with bullying and women’s rights, where was she all those years when Weinstein was forcing himself on powerless young actresses and goodness knows who? She was as silent as the grave, and insists she knew nothing – although many people certainly appeared to know.
There are disturbing allegations about how, back in 2004, male actors Matt Damon and Russell Crowe – both of whom worked with Weinstein – personally phoned Sharon Waxman, a reporter working on an exposé of the Miramax producer for the New York Times, to get her to drop the piece.
This week Waxman tweeted: ‘Hey Matt Damon what’s it like to be a spineless profiteer who stays silent?’ Damon has denied he helped suppress the story.
Meanwhile, one of Weinstein’s alleged victims, actress Rose McGowan, was infuriated by Batman star Ben Affleck’s belated statement calling Weinstein’s behaviour ‘unacceptable’. In a tweet, she suggested Affleck must have known what Weinstein was accused of.
The Weinstein Company’s board has hurriedly issued a statement condemning Weinstein’s actions as ‘antithetical to human decency’.
‘Human decency?’ Hollywood knows all about that, doesn’t it?
Today the public is sick to death of Hollywood’s overpaid superstars, their identikit politics, their bleating, herdlike behaviour, their clichéd and predictable pronouncements on everything from feminism to global warming, their utter incapacity for independent thought, their shameful lack of courage and their moral vacuity.
They may play dauntless superheroes and feisty kick-ass heroines on screen, but the Weinstein affair has exposed them – for the way they flaunt their moral credentials – to be nothing more than amoral, money-grabbing cowards.
Middle man: With Gwyneth Paltrow (left) and Cameron Diaz