30 September 2009

Miscellaneous Polanski Commentary

Ken gives a good, solid fisking to the petition drafted by the Société des Auteurs et Compositeurs Dramatiques at his stomping ground on Popehat.

Like Ken, I am skeptical of the "Hollywood is a moral cesspool, inhabited by morons" meme, as well as the less overtly judgmental but closely related "Hollywood is completely out of touch with America" meme. But what are we to make of the seemingly overwhelming support of Hollywoodians for Polanski compared to this:
On the Los Angeles Times website only one in 30 comments from members of the public supported Polanski and most called for him to face justice.
Sure, the LA Times comment system is not exactly a perfect statistical cross-section of America, but I don't hear anyone in the film industry calling for Polanski's head. There's got to be somebody in Hollywood who agrees Polanski is a rapist shit who deserves some much delayed justice. (Besides Rob Long, and even then I'm just assuming he agrees with me. He's been too busy critiquing Ralph Nader's delusional new 700 page novel to address Polanski.) Have I just not come across the film industry types who are correct about this? If so, please leave a comment pointing me in their direction.

Remember what rough treatment Whole Foods got after CEO John Mackey had the audacity to suggest non-Obama-approved health care reform proposals? What do you think being a rape apologist will get you these days? Here are some people towards whom you can direct your ire, if you are so inclined:
  • Woody Allen
  • Pedro Almodovar
  • Wes Anderson
  • Darren Aronofsky
  • Monica Bellucci
  • Jean-Pierre Dardenne
  • Luc Dardenne
  • Terry Gilliam
  • Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu
  • Wong Kar Waï
  • John Landis
  • David Lynch
  • Michael Mann
  • Julian Schnabel
  • Martin Scorcese
  • Tilda Swinton
  • Harvey Weinstein

The Cranky Professor has this to say about that petition:
I love this line from the petition:
"The arrest of Roman Polanski in a neutral country, where he assumed he could travel without hindrance ... opens the way for actions of which no one can know the effects," said the signatories...
What do they think Switzerland is, Disneyworld? Switzerland is neutral in WAR, that doesn't mean it doesn't have a lot of laws and arrest people - even some who are wanted in other countries.
Amen. Neutrality doesn't make a country into Candyland. There are still rules.

Alex Massie advises Polanski's friends that they are not helping when they say things like this:
Then again, [Robert] Harris is hardly the only one of the film-makers' friends who has embarrassed himself. Consider Whoopi Goldberg:
"I know it wasn't rape-rape. It was something else but I don't believe it was rape-rape. He went to jail and and when they let him out he was like, 'You know what, this guy's going to give me a hundred years in jail. I'm not staying.' So that's why he left."
In this video clip Goldberg admits she has no idea if it was consensual, but she's still sure it didn't qualify as rape. (For the record, it wasn't consensual in any way, shape or form.)

Does Whoopi Goldberg exist in a universe with any moral grounding whatsoever? What the hell is rape-rape?? F*** that. And F*** Whoopi Goldberg. Two times.

Here's how I see it:
P1: Roman Polanski is a rapist.
P2: It is in society's interest to punish rapists.
C: Therefore it is in society's interest to punish Roman Polanski.
If you want to reject my conclusion you need to reject one of my two premises. Which one is wrong? What am I leaving out that's relevant? The crime was a long time ago, he's an artist, he's old, he was on the way to an award show in his honor, he's been living overseas in the country of his birth, he thought Switzerland wouldn't arrest him, the Swiss have (or had) banking secrecy laws, the Swiss are neutral, his victim has personally forgiven him, his second wife was murdered, his mother died in the Holocaust. I get it. How do any of those things bear on P1, P2 or C? How are they anything but obfuscatory?

1 comment:

  1. Note to self: Dennis Miller is the only Hollywood type guy I've seen on the right side of this. Perhaps the only time in my life I've been in full agreement with Dennis Miller's analysis?