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The innocence of childhood

By Michael J. Smith on Wednesday October 7, 2009 10:53 AM

Full disclosure: I personally was not an innocent child. I was a filthy-minded little bugger with an imagination whose eccentric prurience the Marquis de Sade would have admired. Readers who were more like the sweet creature pictured above will perhaps be kind enough to make allowance for this in reading what follows.

In a couple of previous posts -- here, and here -- I seem to have staked out a shall-we-say contrarian position on some rather sensitive topics. (Among other things, I asserted that cops, generally speaking, are as a matter of concrete present fact a bigger menace than child molesters.)

My colleague Owen Paine, in the comments, raised a rather interesting point: why do we treat rape and sexual assault in general differently from other types of assault?

Now this is a question that deserves an answer: where a distinction is made, we ought to be able to articulate the basis for it. I'm sorry to say, however, that no satisfactory answer was forthcoming from any of the enragé comrades who have exercised their eloquence on this topic. Samples:

Holy shit, I just saw where you equate rape and assault. That's awesome! Cause people are emotionally traumatized from forced sex as infrequently as they are from simple assault! You're goddamn brilliant OP!

Tell me, which would you rather I do; stick a finger up your ass or punch you in the face?

* * *

... an equation of rape and simple assault only makes sense completely removed from the context of human history. Psychologically and socially it's completely different, and birth control doesn't make that go away. The effect on the victim, conditioned by society and by biological factors too, determines the meaning and impact of the crime, not the amount of momentum transferred from one body to another or the extent of the bruising. Only if neither the victim's state of mind nor ultimately society itself matters is rape just another kind of assault.

Sexual activity isn't just an unusual form of extended bodily contact. Genitals aren't just another body part, not in terms of our minds.

The second of these comments is more thoughtful than the first, but it still amounts simply to re-asserting a supposedly self-evident principle. Now I have always believed that anything which seems self-evident is almost certainly wrong, and in any case deserves a very critical sifting.

I mentioned in one of my earlier posts that this is a society which both sentimentalizes children and systematically brutalizes them, both physically and psychologically. We hocus up a sacred taboo around their genitals; then we subject the rest of their bodies to all kinds of ill-usage, and mangle their souls, or try to, in our feedlot schools.

And that's just American children. What our righteous institutions do to children elsewhere in the world is too grisly to contemplate.

One has to wonder whether these two things -- the sentimentality and the brutality -- are perhaps two sides of the same coin.

This would have the advantage of explaining the intense psychic energy that drives much discussion of child abuse and child molestation. We can talk quite calmly about the number of children run over by cars, or afflicted by juvenile diabetes, but the quaver creeps into our voice and the fire ignites in our eye when genital contact comes into the picture. Is sexual abuse the area where we compensate, or over-compensate, for all the other abuse we accept and even collude in(*)?

If so... why is sex the chosen area for our piaculative zeal?

If memory serves, moral panic about child abuse started to gather steam back in the 70s, and reached a wild peak of collective dementia in the day-care witch-hunts of the Reagan and Clinton years. One wonders if we didn't perhaps give ourselves something of a fright when we opened the sexual floodgates back in the 60s. Have we erected the adamantine wall of childhood innocence -- before 18, nothing; after 18, everything -- by way of locking the stable after the horse has escaped?


(*) I'm thinking here, among other things, of parents acting as homework enforcement agents for the schools.

Comments (87)

Full disclosure: I don't really give a crap what about the current state of childhood; it's myths, symbols, history, Jungian archetypes, semantic structuralism or effect on the fucking tides. Whatever the point is about the over-sentimentalization of childhood in world history it proves only that, with enough historical perspective, one can ignore any-fucking-thing.

Which brings us to op's 'Is there really any such thing as rape?' comment. I don't know if this is an attempt at "black" humor, a weaselly attempt to score debate points or just demonstrates op's inability to use Google. But speaking as an undiscovered species of geranium, I suspect the only rational reply to this lies somewhere between: "Let Tom Green do Tom Green's material" and "Ram it, you fucking pig."

Now lets move on to the false equivalence part of our test. Here we are asked to explain why raping kids is such a big deal, considering all the other terrible things that happen to kids like juvenile diabetes, compulsory education and SpongeBob Squarepants. But why stop there? Isn't global climate change a more pressing problem than child molestation? Isn't genocide worse than kiddie rape? What about police brutality and state repression? And if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce, don't they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does?

Is it counter-revolutionary of me to say that Roman Polanski is a degenerate kiddie-raper who should spend the rest of his life behind bars? Should I state my position with regards to Marxist dialectics, Benthamite utilitarianism and the works of Cyrus R. Teed? Am I being emotional? Not empathetic enough? Too sentimental? Legalistic? Rational? Heuristic? Holistic? Flip? Sleepy? Dopey? Wash? Rinse? Spin? Chop? Dice? Frappe?



tom green
now that's way too low a blow

"the ram it" bit
i guess would be into the usual ram hole eh ??
sounds like fun

of course as a gentleman you'll allow me choice of objet d'ram ...
i'll get back to ya
give me a few nights to experiment


"if this is an attempt at "black" humor.."

attempt ??

" weaselly attempt to score debate points"

oh now that's crazy alan
plain daffy
i'm a pig not a weasel ..right
or am i some monstrous protean chimera ???

"just demonstrates op's inability to use Google"
that is a line worth
the launching of
a thousand ill conceived gests


alright alright i'll confess
i ate kids
it was only for a couple three years
back when the rise
of reagan and deng drove me into an unquenchable hunger ..
but hey i got baby rapes on my rap sheet

hot buttons need regular pushing
like orgasms they tend to subside
with excessive abuse


Speaking of "complicity with the enforcement state" (as in your previous post), it was Polanski who insisted on being exonerated by the same philistines he flipped the bird to thirty years ago. If he'd kept his big yap shut they never would have gone after him. If he hadn't had his idiot lawyers make that snotty remark in the Motion to Dismiss he'd be free to carry on his lighthearted roue ways today. Hoist with his own petard? Le ha ha ha. The police are not your friends? Indeed.


i wonder, do we think now that kids are the only real way we can change the future?

Uh, yeah. I think that Smithee sums it up well.

Also, I see no reason to choose between cops and child molesters. There's plenty of ire to spare for all manner of abuses out there. Besides, why pretend that the two groups have some kind of mutual exclusivity deal going on? You can find abusers in any line of work, or in no line of work at all.


Sexually abusing children is worse than just abusing them because the sexual abuse is the outcome of the simple abuse.

Children are abused because society makes them powerless. They can't work, have bank accounts, vote or drive. You cannot consent to sex if you don't have the power to say no, which most children don't.

When Rush Limbaugh talked about Abu Ghraib as being "frat hazing" none of us said "well putting panties on their heads and making them masturbate isn't worse than bombing them. Sexual humiliation is the final outcome, the goal even, of bombing and invading. If Joe the Investment Banker wants to hire someone to put panties on his head and shit on his chest, he's perfectly free to say yes because he's also free to say no. Neither a child nor a prisoner is able to say now.

But why do we even need to talk about child abuse with Polanski. Had he drugged and raped a 30 year old woman, he'd stil belong in jail.


I think Wrong nails it. He raped and drugged someone. "Save the children" adds to the heartstring-pulling, but the reality of his actions remain.


There are some excellent points amongst the stunners from MJS, such as the incredible note about the 70's leftists planning seriosuly to be the ones in control of the nuclear reactors, and the sexual hysteria of the McMartin/Fells Acre time that put so many innocent men and women in jail for so long (one of the offending DAs, Martha Coakley, is trying to run for Senate in Massachusetts without that terrible prosecution being attached to her forever besmirched name), but there's a sentence or two that needed an instant delete button.
As for Polanski, we should acknowledge that his acquired life of celebrity and wretched excess no doubt contributed mightily to the rape of the poor girl, and that if anyone wanted him in jail for life, I'd ask what the whole damn point is now. Do you want to be his jail guard? Where are all the jail cells going to come from for the criminals of upper capitalism who are not prosecuted under the current banner of "justice"? Who wants to say that all is good?


Michael, I object to your characterization of my responses as enragé. First, it comes off as an attempt to discredit them, and I rather liked them. Second, I wasn't particularly enraged at the time. On rereading I don't think either looks like the work of someone frothing at the keyboard. You can pick apart the incoherence of my arguments without speculating about my mental state; please engage with my arguments (such as they are) rather than my mood.

In particular, I was amused by your post, not enraged.

You start by saying that leftists, who aren't in power, are being Walter Mitty when they try to articulate a policy preference for everything going on currently, and in particular that there's no need for one to stand up for Polanski or law enforcement in this situation. This seems totally reasonable, and I agree with it.

Then, not half a page later, you say that cops present a more concrete danger than child molesters. I agree with ms. xeno here. It seems a whole lot liking making the kind of choice we just agreed there was no need to make. It's incongruous.

Besides, that, so what that the cops are more dangerous? Why bother saying it? It's okay to be against both child molestation and the cops without a hierarchical ranking of their malignancy. I didn't spend a whole lot of time in 2008 arguing maybe Obama was a lesser evil than McCain, either.

I am PWOG:

You guys seem to be much more interested in defending Polanski against the cops than you were in defending Gates against the cops.

Just saying.......


Edit the beginning of the last paragraph: "Besides that..."


Fair enough, StO. As regards your comments anyway, I hereby retract "enragé".

As regards the "choice" between cops and child molesters -- it wasn't a choice; it was a comparison. The only reason for the ranking was my puzzlement that so many fellow Lefties were cheering on the cops, an incongruous thing for a Lefty to do, it seems to me.


PWOG -- I wasn't aware that anybody had defended Polanski here. But it's quite true that nobody defended Gates.

Personally, I would like to see them end up as cellmates. I may even write a one-act play based on that premise.

I am PWOG:

You mean a black guy who commits the crime of mouthing off to a cop in his own living room will get the same punishment as a white guy who drugs and rapes a 13 year old?

Hmm....Sounds like American justice all right.

It seems to me that Gates was an innocent victim of the cop but since he's Obama's friend nobody on the "left" was interested in defending him.

Polanski, on the other hand, is a sophisticated European artiste. He's a kiddie rapist who deserves to be locked up in a cell with an Aryan brotherhood member named Bubba. But lots and lots of people on the "left" are afraid to call a kiddie rapist a kiddie rapist because, after all, you might just be on the same side as a lot of provincial puritanical Amerkens.

Neither of course is very typical. The typical victim of the police in America is a 16 year old black kid who gets hasseled for hanging out on his own stoop.

Personally speaking, I think SMBIVA has amply demonstrated its main proposal, which is that the left is mega-addled on this stuff. IOZ, who's 95 percent reliable on these matters, reports that Polanski's victim thinks it's time to forgive. That's all one needs to know, though it has huge ramifications, in this micro-tempest in a micro-teapot, out left version of Brangelina.

My real question is why our SMBIVA hosts are so stridently anti-school. They are obvious beneficiaries of major school discipline. And do they appreciate the risks one takes with ones kids by not helping with the homework regime?

And why, oh why, would one mention school as the main assault on our kids? Marketing is twice the size of education, if I may cite myself...


PWOG says:

Neither [Gates nor Polanski] of course is very typical. The typical victim of the police in America is a 16 year old black kid who gets hasseled for hanging out on his own stoop.
Exactly. Here in the Enforcement State, there's a shortage of Hollywood celebrities and Harvard professors on the cellblocks. This needs to be remedied.

Polanksi is a dirty old man, and Gates a self-important reactionary bore. Lock 'em up together and imagine the the conversations....


Are you saying that Polanski has a right to commit a crime because he's a superior intellect?

It seems as if the guy who created me dispatched that idea a century ago.

Does Polanski's victim really "forgive" him? Or is she reluctant to put the genius filmmaker in jail?

And can she forgive him if he hasn't asked to be forgiven?

I am PWOG:

I can think of a lot of Ivy League professors who deserve to be locked up ahead of Gates.

How about Henry Kissinger or Zbigniew Brzezinski? Or one of those Kagan brothers? Or Larry Summers?


But if you really want a cellmate for Polanski, how about Squeaky Fromme? Or did she get out?


Raskolnikov writes:

Are you saying that Polanski has a right to commit a crime because he's a superior intellect?
Uh, no.


So I unwittingly elided a distinction here?

It still sounds silly to me to saying it'd be better, on balance, to halve one group and double the other, when both groups are horrible.

It's as if when you saw Lefties making the wrong ideological mistake, you wanted to briefly illustrate the right mistake for the sake of contrast.


Then are you saying that what Polanski did was NOT a crime?

Or are you saying no crimes should be prosecuted because the state itself is criminal?

I got into the same argument about sexual harassment and rape in the military.

Ultra Lefty Fool told me that we shouldn't worry about women who get raped in the military because they're serving imperialism.

I wasn't too sure about that.



It still sounds silly to me to saying it'd be better, on balance, to halve one group and double the other, when both groups are horrible.
Thought experiment, not a policy recommendation. We don't have any control over either number.



Then are you saying that what Polanski did was NOT a crime?

Or are you saying no crimes should be prosecuted because the state itself is criminal?

Uh, no.

I can't resist paraphrasing Sherlock here: when you've eliminated everything I'm not saying, whatever remains must be what I am saying. But I personally don't know how to say it, other than how I have said it.


PWOG wrote:

I can think of a lot of Ivy League professors who deserve to be locked up ahead of Gates.How about Henry Kissinger or Zbigniew Brzezinski? Or one of those Kagan brothers? Or Larry Summers?
I couldn't agree more. In fact I think they're all bigger criminals than even... Polanski.


Maybe a simple list would be better.

List the crimes you think the state should prosecute (being an uppidity black professor) and the crimes you think the state should let slide (being a kiddie rapist) and we'll call it a day.

And, fwiw, we theoretically can have control over one group (the number of police). If we were a real democracy with a small "d" we could simply vote on it.

On the other hand, we have no control over how many adult men want to have sex with chldren. That's nature's mystery. Whether it's genetic or social has yet to be determined. But I'm pretty sure ending capitalism wouldn't end kiddie rape.

Ending patriarchal religion might, but that's another debate.


Raskolnikov -- at ax-point, no doubt -- demands:

List the crimes you think the state should prosecute... and the crimes you think the state should let slide... and we'll call it a day.
Mon cher Raskolnikov, I must say with all respect that you haven't been paying attention.

What you demand is just precisely what I decline to do, and what I think everybody should decline to do. What you're asking for is what old Dr Marx called called Rezepte für die Garküche der Zukunft -- recipes for the fast-food stands of the future.


Mon cher MJS, you dodge the question.

You can say one of three things:

1.) Let's prosecute no crimes because the state is criminal

2.) Let's accept the state's current standard of what crimes should be prosecuted.

3.) Let's set a standard we'd like to see the state come closer to.

Number 2 I think we can all dismiss. We all think there are crimes that aren't really crimes but are in reality forms of social control. Marijuana possession would be a good example.

I will readily put myself in category 3. Get together and try to seize control of the state so you can change the direction of the criminal justice system. The state, after all, spends a lot more money on prosecuting minor drug offenses than it does protecting children.

THAT it seems is your major error. You take the state's propaganda at its word. In reality, the state puts very little resources into prosecuting kiddie rapists and wife beaters. It puts a lot of resources into the "war on drugs".

And because you take the state's propaganda at its word, you find yourself in category 1 and yet not quite able to bring yourself to admit it.


As for Polanski's prospective cellmate, some tasteless individuals have suggested Charles Manson. Tragedy plus Time and all that.


Getting the shit kicked out of you isn't meant to be fun nor does it have any redeeming social value that may somehow be lost in the experience. If rape is considered a more serious crime than assault its because sex does have redeeming social value and is usually something to be encouraged as a social good. The physiological, psychological and sociological damage created by rape taken together is usually more severe and long-lasting than an assault of comparable or even worse violence. Victims are often find it difficult or even impossible to enjoy sex or form intimate relations with others.

These problems are often magnified in children, who usually don't have the financial means to escape or the psychological tools and resources to cope with the trauma. The elevation of rape above other forms of assault is not some arbitrary social construct invented by sex-obsessed puritans, but a reflection of the victim's reality. I should think any civilized person would be concerned with rape, including the sex-positive.

No one here is cheering on the cops, as you put it, but just asking that justice be done. If anything, you and OP have gone to great lengths to minimize the crime of child rape, apparently because Lefty Cool Kids should never be caught dead agreeing to what is self-evident to everyone else. If there's one quality a Lefty should have, it's empathy. The police are what they are, and are no more or less evil for being empowered to enforce the laws against rape. Here you are falling into the right-libertarian's trap of seeing government and its agencies as the sole source of oppression and injustice in our society. If we empower government to provide a social safety net, regulate corporations or enforce criminal laws, men with guns will inevitably come to march us off to the Gulag. Perhaps we should allow the Invisible Hand to work its magic with rapists, too.

Well you boyos are in fine company. Shales of the Wapo says 13 year olds are not 13 in Hollywood.... and the fully estimable and tiresome Whoopi says it was not "rape-rape".

Oh would that crimes of state were prosecuted. But put in a black puppet and he'll cover for the white guys. And waging war in Afghanistan in '79 (Zbig) is just fine anti-commie acts. Etc. What either has to do with a rape of opportunity (in which the mother is all too likely complict as well as Angelica Huston) I sure don't know.

Earlier in her defenses Whoopi also said Vick's transgressions against dogs and for dog fight gambling were just his "southern culture". So she is a fine upstanding critic - of nothing. One more ignoramus on the stage. Like Gates, a presidential friend. Enuf said.

Carry on.

(I am with Smithee and ms_xeno, obviously)


Sean and Smithee for the win.

Michael Hureaux:

It's a utopian notion to believe that Polanski will receive justice in U.S. Courts, and I don't recognize the rights of the U.S. courts to place him under arrest,whatever his offense. So long as the U.S. courts and their friends in the liberal intelligentsia, jerks like Cokey Roberts, do not want to clean up the war criminals whose own massive war crimes are beyond description, I don't want to hear any of the filth coming out of their mouths about Polanski.

As my wife, who is far from insensitive on the question of rape or assault of women put it last night, if the original victim isn't coming forward, that puts "paid" to the situation. So long as there are any questions as to the original behavior of the officers of the court, that also should raise a red flag. Those who want to turn this into a "feminist" issue are full of beans. We've got women and children in this country who are suffering from type 2 Diabetes which goes untreated due to the abusive piggishness of this system, and people want to scream about what Roman Polanski did in an isolated circumstance thrity odd years ago? Give me a fucking break. I ain't playing. This is stupid, and a waste of time. Leave the man alone.


So, because the system is "piggish" and politicians and prosecuters are "dicks," no crime should be punished?

"Free Everyone", because I don't have health insurance. Boy, that's a program I can get behind.

Child rape is about as bad as it gets, but a Euro-style dole and parenting stipends would prevent more future rapes than a million Polanski trials.

FWIW, I think there's a real Freudian element that makes getting raped way worst than getting punched out...Nobody who gets punched out feels like their social connections have all been invaded and poisoned.

Really, it's not a big deal when you put it in it's correct historical context.

And it's no problem so long as you can run out the clock.

It all happened so long ago.

Plus, my wife says it's okay.

And the victim said she forgives him, so that makes it all better.

And anyway, with the US justice system the way it is, why not rape a 13 year old girl?

It wasn't even rape, technically.

She acted like a woman.

And anyone who disagrees with me is a priggish right-wing bluenose prude.

So there!

Smithee, you forgot:

There are war crimes happening somewhere, so shut up!

awesome argumentation:

Shorter Smith and Paine: raping children is rude, to be sure, but it's Not That Big A Deal. Legal proscription is politically correct overkill and a dubious constraint on the libido of heroic leftist Marquis-de-Sade males who know that premenarchal girls Actually Enjoy It and Hey Feminist Bitch Why Were They At Jack Nicholson's Party Anyway?

Also, we brutalize children with school and shit and bomb people, blah, blah, blah, so cry me a river over a girl crying rape because you're obsessed with sexual transgression.

I think argumentation summed it up.


I think argumentation summed it up.

This is because you don't pay attention.

A Judge recently said that there has been "substantial misconduct" in the Polanski case, and, contrary to what the DA's office says, this is not the first time they've had the opportunity to catch the guy. he spent this summer in Switzerland

But it doesn't matter because he's a child rapist. Who cares about police misconduct when you're dealing with child rapists?

The government also has to ignore civil liberties in order to prevent terror attacks.

Somehow, people who agree with the first statement disagree strongly with the second, even though the logic is exactly the same.

Hell, you can make a better case for universal wiretaps and torture, because those are aimed at prevention. Is Polanski still out there raping little girls?

Ignoring misconduct when it comes to terrorists is bad, but ignoring it when it comes to Polanski is good.

Since what the police are doing in each case is the same, the difference must come from the nature of the victims.

Child rape is somehow special in a way that child-and-adult-blowing-up-and-maiming isn't.

It sure seems to short circuit your ability to read and understand an argument.

Ms. X already summed up your argument, but thanks for playing, Chris.

Also, Natassja Kinski. Just sayin'.

Speaking of Manson:

Roman Polanski, Eric Prince, and the Pope all walk into a topless bar.

Got to be a joke in there somewhere.

Oh yeah. Elliot Spitzer's paid more for fucking a 25 year old woman and paying her thousands of dollars than all three of these evil scumbugs combined.

Doesn't seem like society comes down too hard on kiddie rapers and kiddie raper enablers does it?

Lesson. Just don't piss off the bankers.


@Christopher: The issue of the judge's alleged misconduct is vastly overrated.



@Christopher: The issue of the judge's alleged misconduct is vastly overrated.



I disagree that if a victim doesn't wish to press charges, a rape should not be prosecuted. The reason being that victims are often intimidated into conveniently "forgiving" their attackers, and to allow a rapist to escape prosecution in this way creates an even greater incentive for the rapist to try and silence his victim through threats. This is particularly true with children who may be reluctant to turn in "loved ones" who rape them. In the Polanski case, the primary reason the victim doesn't Polanski to be prosecuted is because she doesn't want her family or her self dragged through all this again.

oh but christopher I have paid attention.

Very well aware of the issues of judicial over reach, cross pollination, even Wells, the/a prosecutor, triple stepping - recent renunciations, etc. Now he, I will admit, is hard to keep up with.

Followed the commentary from Samantha G herself for years, beginning about 15 or more years ago.

RP bought a house in Gstaad about 10 years ago. Switzerland, a strange place I know well from having lived there... is being opportunistic. NO ONE looks good in this mess of a mess. By now it is an international game of gotcha, something for sale, what deal can we make. Monte Hall should return for the new season.

And to be frank, I would support calling this "quit", as *she* wishes to do. IMO she knew, in the way of a child in Hollywood, she was merchandise then, and she knows it now. There is complicity enough to go around.

I personally believe, til I hear different, her GJ testimony at the time. Esp when she dressed and tried to leave (when Angelica Huston interrupted at the door to the suite where RP had her), RP should have stepped back... and, his proclivities were well known in his Hollywood circle. There is commentary around from Robert Townsend, the screen writer on Chinatown, about what a bitch it was to try to work with Roman, what with prepubescent and older little chickies topless in the pool and Roman jumping up and down and running out to photograph them. Etc.

But by now, hell, let it rip.

I won't presume to know anything about you... or what you know, don't know, pay attention to or whatever. Or what your reading skills are.


I'm trying to package this thread as a textbook: working title, Studies In Misreading.


@Christopher: The issue of the judge's alleged misconduct is vastly overrated.

Fair enough. I was reacting to things like this:

[I]f we’re going to talk about the fuck-up-edness of the U.S. legal system, surely we can find a better martyr than a famous rich guy with the best lawyers in the world who drugged and raped a 13-year-old girl, struck a plea deal in order to get off with the lesser charge of “unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor” (or statutory rape), and then fled the country when it looked like the plea deal may not be honored?

And, well, no. The fact that a person is a well known scumbag has no bearing on questions of how the legal system is run. The reasons why seem so rudimentary that I'm shocked that liberals have just abandoned them.

The US government tortures people because it knows they're guilty. Lynch mobs hang people because they know they're guilty. Knowing a guy is guilty isn't any excuse for misconduct.

Even Polanski's defenders have ignored the question, and seem to prefer arguing that good art mitigates rape somehow.

Arguing about whether art excuses rape just strikes me as about the most asinine thing you could argue about, whereas how the LA legal system operates is a fairly important question.

The fact that everybody wants to push the whole legal process into the background to pontificate about how much they hate rape or love art drives me up the wall.

Mr. Smith's post isn't exactly bullet-proof, but it is an argument, and I think it's at least worth addressing in good faith, rather then with "Oh, so you like kiddie rapists, huh asshole"?

For the record, I think Polanski belongs in jail and is a complete dickhead.


is the final fait of all regimes
praise be to CLIO

so i await Her next
hierarchical collapse scene
and the entr'acte anarchy
that nicely follows
with its pro temp
vactioning of the police power
and furlowing of the many many
tens of k's
of soul trapped police hu-caps

where lines like:

"I think Polanski belongs in jail"

are a silly priggish joke
its an" we're all zombies now" moment
where ignorant brutes and mental monsters
roam among us .. unchecked

wolves trot side by side with wooly sheep
both caught up in a temporary
co existential rapsody

with ersatz brother and sister acts

both the joyous sharing pillagers
of the torn down setates
the generosity of a flash flood
of sudden abundence


marisa cat et al
enrage and red louche alike

welcome to father smiff's
exiguous tatters of an amoral pageant

ps nothing i quite despise as much as
petty bourgoise --even jacobin--
notions of moral progress
and higher enlightenment

long live dismal crank bull lee !!!!
and the manic giants of rabelais


i hasten to add
Mother Courage
Magua and bigger thomas


grow out if it comrades
obviously fagan fucked oliver in the ass
having tired of the artful dodger's sarcasms
about wilted memberships


"If there's one quality a Lefty should have, it's empathy"

odd ..rightests have no need of the big E
or if they had some they'd be ..leftists..so then i guess those of us lacking in sufficient big E
are leftists manque ..eh ??

fair enough

i'll be your stone hearted monster sean
if you need such a one with the rest of my features
but father smiff
is a puddle of anguish
over the pains and penalties
inflicted on his fellow hairless apes
by higher demi godic
human forms


OP's stuff sounds much better read in the voice of Leonard Pinth-Garnell.

Son of Uncle Sam:

Get them Cunts OP- fuck em' in the ass like they were lil' campers! Remember Stalins biggest mistake was Beria, Kruschev's is what you want man!
I haven't heard blubbering like this since Sir Ben in Death and the Maiden!

I disagree that if a victim doesn't wish to press charges, a rape should not be prosecuted.- Sean

Tell me that's a complicated sense of humor you have- or you're trying to get into Mariska Harigitay's pants! If no one's pressing charges, who's gettin' their serving of justice? If you were going to have your life ruined with just an accusation, wouldn't you like an accuser to go with it?
In Polanski's case he was convicted ok-
She doesn't want to go through it again? Fine fuck her, she got over it! So you want to MAKE her go through it all over again?
As far as intimidation....preach courage.
Generally speaking, it's a pretty sketchy crime- check out Dallas DNA, 36 out of the 60 guys prosecuted for rape have been exonerated. ah fuck it -lebowski

Son of Uncle Sam:

Mike Hureaux says it best-


"Leonard Pinth-Garnell"
a personal idol of mine
thank u red

(red west ??)


i second 'the son's ' motion

three cheers for inspector HUREAUX


"odd ..rightests have no need of the big E
or if they had some they'd be ..leftists..so then i guess those of us lacking in sufficient big E
are leftists manque ..eh ??"

I don't see where you get this non-sequitur from, but yeah, empathy is a good quality in anyone, including righties. It's just not as necessary a quality in those wishing to turn Iran into a parking lot as it is in your local day-care worker. But I fear anyone who can't tell the difference between getting smacked in the mouth by the schoolyard bully and getting ass-raped by your stepdad is lacking in more than empathy.


"If no one's pressing charges, who's gettin' their serving of justice? If you were going to have your life ruined with just an accusation, wouldn't you like an accuser to go with it?"

Tell me, how does a murder victim go about making an accusation or pressing charges? Clearly, there are situations which may call for someone other than the victim to make an accusation and press charges. If a guy is caught on video raping a ten-year-old girl, then strangling and stabbing her a few times for good measure, and she refuses to press charges because she is understandably terrified of her attacker, should he be let off? It's easy to "preach courage" when it's not your ass on the line.

No no, Sean. Hureaux is right. If your wife says it's no big deal, then it's no big deal.

Besides, look at Dallas.

I mean, rape is a sketchy proposition, isn't it? Not really different from assault in the grand sweep of history.

And you're probably misreading everyone or you'd agree with them.

Besides, she was probably asking for it.

And it was a long time ago. You can't really prosecute someone for something that happened so long ago.

That would be revanche. Or recherche. Or bouganvilla. Or something.


"But I fear anyone who can't tell the difference between getting smacked in the mouth by the schoolyard bully and getting ass-raped by your stepdad is lacking in more than empathy."

i think sean you loaded the bases
for your self there

as i recall alan offered ME the choice

not my step dad --whover he might be--
u ???

and i have a cock not a vagina
does that matter ??

the gender common ass hole not withstanding
i assume you're NOT making a gender distinction here as well as
the goregously empathic
violation distinction



you get better with each comment

i'd never have guessed
this sordid topic would so inspire u

i'd rather we exchange views
on the oeuvre of barbara steele




for you curious fans

here's a snap taken of me ...well
... a few months back
by my long time domestic partner
i was on my way to the annual gala
put on by the baker street irregulars (beacon hill chapter)



"i think sean you loaded the bases
for your self there "

I think not. Since you failed to distinguish between what kind of assault or what kind of rape you were talking about (statutory, date, acquaintance, stranger, oral or anal, etc) when you suggested the one was no worse than the other, I was free to fill in the blanks with whatever example I choose, whether involving assholes or stepdads or not.

You're correct in assuming the asshole was chosen for its gender-unspecificity, and the schoolyard bully for its familiarity.



now you've cleared that up
i take it we are in totally agreement

you are right across the board

and i'm a brutish
tender holed gargoyle

god's speed !!!



since you nicely cleared that all up
now i take it we are in total agreement:

you are politically correct across the board
and I??...well i'm a brutish gargoyle
with a suddenly tender ass hole


seems i've run afoul

father S's
for dolts suffering
from over eager-ocity
lampoon algorithm


Politically correct? C'mon now. You left out pwog, puritan and pedestrian, as I don't think "politically correct" suffices to explain my shameful failure to embrace your superior wisdom.

Sorry for being such a pain in the ass.


Pun intended?

Michael Hureaux:

Oh, excuse me. Enjoy your little show trial of Roman Polanski, ladies and gentlemen, go right on ahead. Burn Polanski at the fucking stake, You all know this isn't anything but yet another chapter of media bread and circus, and you're playing right along. It's not going to accomplish a god damn thing, it's not going to shed any light on the problem of the adult abuse of children at either an individual or group level. It's a show trial, and that's all it is, led by people who don't have anything else to do but lead national hate week.

If Polanski did as they claim he did, then he may be mentally ill, which means the last place he ought to be is in prison, as some of you maintain here. My mother used to physically beat and emotionally abuse my sisters and I, should she have been sent to prison? What about my father? Since he did nothing about my mother's behavior most of the time, shouldn't he have been locked up as accessory? Are we going to start locking up the emotionally or mentally ill in high security prisons, or, as Cokey Roberts suggests, shooting offenders like Polanski in order to correct them? Or better yet, maybe my sisters and I should have just let my mother rot away slowly out on the street once she was diagnosed with dementia three years ago. After all, even though her physical abuse of the three of us was a long time ago, the law is the law. Y'all sound RIGHTEOUS, and that's all. Maybe that's why I went to therapy instead of trusting the so-called "left' to help me recover from my own traumas all this time. God save us all from fair weather allies.

I suppose you'd have been for locking up Ezra Pound, too. And Oscar Wilde, and Wilhelm Reich, for that matter. Shoot, don't let me get in your way. The law is the law. Go ahead and make an individual example of Polanski today, and I'm sure we'll all wake up to a dawn in which no adult ever sexually molests or abuses a child again.

Son of Uncle Sam:

-Tell me, how does a murder victim go about making an accusation or pressing charges? -
Generally,.... there is a body.

As far as your hypothetical situation- it's pretty situational, my only point was that everytime there's a cry of rape, or a suspect is in custody, maybe someone's lying or they got the wrong guy. It's assault that usually carries little evidence. It's generally he said she said. Why give the justice system more pressure to convict a guy cause he fits criteria. In Dallas- it's more of an out rage since the system ruined peoples lives and never actually got anyone justice. The only result was the case got closed.
I don't know what you mean on courage. I guess it is easy for me, my ass isn't on the line.


Mike D. wrote:

My real question is why our SMBIVA hosts are so stridently anti-school. They are obvious beneficiaries of major school discipline. And do they appreciate the risks one takes with ones kids by not helping with the homework regime?

And why, oh why, would one mention school as the main assault on our kids? Marketing is twice the size of education, if I may cite myself...

Sorry it took so long to respond to this very sensible question. Of course the real response would take a book or two, not just an offhand blog post. But here's a placeholder until the book gets written.

Learning is a great thing. Teaching can even be a great thing -- I've had teachers who were among the great blessings of my life, as well as teachers who still define, for me, the utmost limits of human depravity and squalor.

But schooling -- schooling is an institution. And in our society it is explicitly, even boastfully, committed to winnowing, sorting, ranking and allocating to their places in the social order, its human feedstock, sometimes referred to as "children".

As long as that's the program, I can't love it.

Of course there are many many toilers in the vineyard -- or rather, the abattoir -- who are trying to do their best for the kiddies.

I admire 'em. But I can't help feeling that they're pissing into the wind, as we summer sailors say -- trying to make their institution do the opposite of what it's really meant to do, namely, to justify the failure of the many and the success of the few.

Sorry, MD. But am I wrong?


"justify the failure of the many
and the success of the few"

fortunately in the final conflict

only to most of the few
and many of the near few

cometh oh great upheavel

Yeah! You're all just a bunch of...of...meanies! Andandand you all want to put us all in jail and throw away the keys with your "morality" and your "justice" and your media hate weak and your uh your "justice!"

Which it isn't you know. Justice. You're being all self-righteous and moral and shit but that's not justice. Ha! Well, enjoy your fake fakey fake morality and everything. Huh. Yeah! Enjoy it because you hate everything and want to put us in jail! For nothing!

awesome a.:

Oh, excuse me. Enjoy your little show trial of Roman Polanski, ladies and gentlemen, go right on ahead. Burn Polanski at the fucking stake

Are we going to start locking up the emotionally or mentally ill in high security prisons

Oh please. At no point has this trainwreck of a thread been about jurisprudence or prosecuting Polanski. It's been a pure exercise in smirking fratboy misogyny, an eyerolling claim that *any* emotional response to child rape is proof of a cretinized, bourgeois prudery, a submission to harpy feminazis, an "intense psychic investment" in irrational sexual hysteria that is not simply misplaced but which disqualifies one from being taken seriously in any political arena whatsoever. As with all such coercive claims of "hysteria," *any* show of emotion about the defended subject is "proof" of the "hysteria," so there is no way to argue against the diffuse psychologizing charge except by completely abjuring the moral claim, which is what the bullying tirade hopes to accomplish.

Smith made the minimizing goal clear when he drew an equivalence between the daycare witchhunts of the nineties and the Polanski case. In the first, the lives of innocent workers were ruined for changing diapers or helping kids go potty, because of coached reports of 'touching' from barely verbal children. In the second, no one disputes that drugged coercive rape took place, but Smith takes the expression of moral repulsion in both cases as identically "irrational" and "hysterical." The equivalence only makes sense if one is suggesting that raping a child is a trivial matter deserving of no condemnation or emotion, the hysteria thus having the same character whether the rape is hallucinated or real, and generated only by a pathological aversion to sexual pleasure itself.

And that's Smith's ongoing insinuation -- hence the moralizing contempt for the objectors, beginning with the tendentious image uptop (less sheltered childen, like Smith, were sexually precocious, so if a raped girl *were* innocent enough to be traumatized, it's really her fault?), and ending with the complaint "before 18 nothing, after 18 everything," which again emphasizes that the rape of a possibly prepubescent child by a middle-aged man is no different from consensual sex between two high school students. Paine helpfully makes the subtext explicit when he characterizes moral disapprobation of child rape as a trivial, petty bourgeois conceit, a giggly nonsensical politically-correct laughably empathetic button which should be pushed until the response (like orgasm! haha!) is extinguished. Fagin fucked Oliver in the ass, get over it!

Exactly as I said originally: the rape of children is No Big Deal. There's no legal, anti-Statist argument here. The argument is a moralizing, pathologizing argument about what people should properly be permitted to feel about the subject of child rape--namely, that feeling anything at all makes one a laughable prude. That is the only point being repeatedly made, and even fitted up with lots of lunatic, zero-sum projection: "you prissies ONLY feel outrage about raped children, and not about manly stuff like war or making childen learn GEOMETRY!" (Latent content: "What's the big deal about raping girls?") Son of Sam is the thread's rush-week champion: get them cunts!! I never heard so much moral blubbering over a little bitch, and besides, nobody can prove rape, he said she said, men are being persecuted by the dykes!

Little chicklet, supposedly innocent. Yeah right. Haw haw!

Well, so it goes at the boy's club, as the feminist whom Smith originally sneered at correctly noted. But stop dressing this shit up as some nuanced, morally complex anti-institutional claim about State power and incarceration. It's not, and it's never come anywhere close.


Michael Hureaux: (in Rocket J. Squirrel voice): And now....watch while I pull an army of straw men outta my ass!

Bullwinkle: I didn't know you had the strength!


Did I just stumble into the WBAI cafeteria? What the hell- the left can't be in this bad of a shape.
Mike D- exactly what kind of "school discpline" in a thread devoted to ass and assholes where you referencing? Red, the phrase "Straw men" is itself a straw men or man (I think I was counting clock ticks when my high school teachers were discipling me on that subject), and you were being mean 'n nasty to a man who wrote with honesty - apologize. MJS - NAMBLA salutes you for broaching the consideration of "more child molesters" with such a worthy audience, one that includes Dr. Freud A. Argumentation himself.
Somebody help me wipe down this place.

Michael Hureaux:

The Polanski arrest and potential extradition is a show trial, and I do not recognize the right of the spectacle or the spectacular courts to prosecute him for rape. The abuse of young people is a complex problem, which will not be solved by turning the question into yet another media circus.

And I wasn't speaking hypothetically, Red, so talk of strawmen all you like. I know where I've been.


It's good to know that the misogyny, false dilemmas and unjustified assumptions spewed on this thread are merely "writing with honesty". As opposed to the, uh, feelings, sensitivity and emotions of their opponents.

Of course every person who dares not to be displeased at Polanski's arrest is equivalent to the daycare witch-hunters and would lock up Ezra Pound, Oscar Wilde, Wilhelm Reich, and your little dog too if they had the chance.

To think otherwise would be hysterical.

All my show trials, Lord
Soon be over


Mr. Hureaux's personal story is exactly the sort of "speaking as a (insert category here)" testimony that MJS ridiculed in his first post on this subject. I guess it's different if you are male.

Note that I do not consider rape to be solely a feminist issue.

Michael Hureaux:

You are quite right, Red, and if any personal memory I've interjected here occludes the main point it should be made subject of ridicule, "honesty" be damned.

So just briefly, here's the point. There has long been, and continues to be, a worldwide confusion in most people about the borderlines of sexual intimacy. Sometimes people "act out" in ways that are not right, and very often, this takes the form of sexual assault. What we know of most perpetrators is that their actions stem from the confusion, rage, and frustration not only around intimacy, but every other aspect of life.

What we also know is that public pillorying or social ostracizing or the actual imprisonment of such offenders does nothing to heal or change them, that in fact, what it often does is deepen the behavior.

So I fail to see where the public humiliation and prosecution on network television of Roman Polanski resembles justice in any way. It is instead a vindictive and spectaclist distraction created by irresponsible jurists, journalists, and people like you who really ought to know better by now. I mean, we see how much Michael Jackson got out of being made the public fool out of his mental illness.

I'm sorry you can't see the show trial you're making yourself part of, and I earnestly pray you're not the victim of this style of defense of "women's rights" one day yourself. After all, a good many women have themselves been the victims of this sort of "justice" around sexual confusion, most notably a young educator who made the mistake of becoming intimate with one of her students here in the northwest a few years back.

This Polanski mess doesn't make any sense, and all your righteousness has all the consistency of a wet fart, in my opinion. Okay? Okay.



extensive comment prolly deserves a rejoinder
but ...ahhh

not from me

congeries of half truths
whittled facts
warped reconstructions
coated with a feigned high dudgeon
aren't all that effective

read to understand
i know its hard when u can't wait
to sting like a drone bee

inspector hureaux is worth
a thousand stilted dolts like u


A nice example of the policing-teaching complex:

Apt title for that news segment: "Painful Lessons".

It certainly was a lesson: you must obey all rules, no matter how arbitrary or trivial. Take notes. There will be a final exam on this which will last the rest of your life.

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