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Oct 15 2012

Perverted chattering degenerate misanthropes hunt for witches

It’s Brendan! Again! Yes he’s back, that mischief-loving scamp from Living Libertarian Marxism or do I mean Zombie Catholic Theocracy. What is it this time? It’s that the reporting and commentary on Jimmy Savile is – wait for it – a witch-hunt.

Wut? The guy’s dead. How can it be a witch hunt when he’s dead?

With each passing day – hour, in fact – the Jimmy Savile scandal looks more and more like a modern-day version of the hysteria that gripped seventeenth-century Salem, when a small town in Massachusetts became convinced that it had witches in its midst. Since the first accusations of child abuse were made against the late BBC entertainer in an ITV documentary on 3 October, Britain’s chattering classes have become consumed by a witch-hunting mentality, with almost every respectable institution, from the BBC to the NHS to the child-protection industry, finding itself dragged into a vortex of Savile-related suspicion and rumour, accusation and counteraccusation.

But he’s dead. He’s gone. People in Salem became convinced that it had witches in its midst: living witches, currently active witches, witches that could get you at any moment. Not people who were already gone.

We also have hysterical, mob-like attacks on the alleged witches, as in Salem. Being dead, Savile can’t be dragged into a showtrial and hanged, as the witches of Salem were, but he can be subjected to a posthumous trial by media, in which every claim made about him is instantly taken as good coin.

At least he admits the logistical problem with his being dead, but only to sweep it away. I don’t know how careful and accurate the coverage is, but Brendan doesn’t really seem to be interested in that – he’s clearly much more interested in his usual ”I’m not like them” pose and in hyperbolic castigation.

And in the most striking echo of Salem, the initial fingerpointing at Savile has descended into fingerpointing at others; at everyone; at those who knew about his abuse but said nothing, and those who didn’t know about it but should have; against the ‘complicit’, the ‘silent’, the ‘enablers’, the ‘accomplices’.

And? What about it? There are such people in the world; what’s with the scare-quotes?

The Savile story is really a vessel for the cultural elite’s perverted obsession with child abuse, and more importantly its belief that everyone is at it – that in every institution, ‘town, village and hamlet’, there are perverts and innocence despoilers, casually warping the next generation. In modern Britain, the figure of The Paedophile has become the means through which the misanthropes who rule over us express their profound fear and suspicion of adults in general, and also of communities and institutions – even of the institutions they hold dear, such is the self-destructive dynamic triggered by the unleashing of the Salem ethos. If Savile had never existed, the chattering classes would have had to invent him, so perfect an encapsulation is he of their degenerate view of the whole of adult society today.

Godalmighty. Is it funny or scary or both? It’s as if he’s describing himself, but somehow projecting it onto everyone else. One minute “the cultural elite” has a perverted obsession, but the next minute that elite is seeing perverts everywhere. Which is it?! Is it the elite that is perverted, or is it the elite that sees perverts under every rock? And who are these misanthropes who fear adults who rule over us? Who are these chattering classes with their “degenerate view”? He sounds scarily like a Nazi there.

It’s as if he’s a raving lunatic complaining about all these raving lunatics cluttering up the place.

20 comments

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  1. 1
    F [i'm not here, i'm gone]

    Uh, no. In the US, the crazed Christian claims of Satanists running childcare and abducting children (none of which was true – not one bit) in the 80s-90s; this was a moral panic witch hunt. Exposing some jerk for things he actually did, along with the people who enable him and did nothing to stop him, and maybe even discussing that culture and climate of sexism, misogyny, abuse, and rape – that’s fucking justice. Idiot.

  2. 2
    smrnda

    The difference between being worried about child sex offenders and ‘witches’ is that the former actually exist, and that we have reliable data that they are fairly common and blend in well with the rest of the populace.

  3. 3
    Acolyte of Sagan

    In my experience of working with the Social Services, many abuse victims will only speak out if they are confident that their abuser is no longher in a position to ‘get’ them. If statements made by Savile’s alleged victims are to be believed then he followed the classic abuser pattern of threats designed to silence the victim. ‘Nobody will believe you over me’ is the most common, and is especially efffective in this case since Savile was famous, honoured by the state, and feted by world leaders and dignitaries. According to one of his accusers, Savile followed up the first line with “I’m King Jimmy, everybody loves and trusts me” (or words very similar, I just caught a snatch of the news) and also issued the other ‘classics’; ‘if you tell, I’ll get you’ ‘I know where you live’ etc. etc.
    To my mind,although there may be some false reports from attention- or compensation-seekers, but tto my mind the ‘witch hunt’ is no more than the realisation of a serial abuser’s many victims that their abuser really cannot get them anymore.

    Oh, and allegations were made during his life – part of the NHS inquiry is into how he was allowed to visit Broadmoor and children’s hospitals despite allegations of wrongdoing against him – but somehow got brushed under the carpet.

  4. 4
    Acolyte of Sagan

    Apologies for the typo’s; it’s half-past medication…

  5. 5
    Brian M

    I am assured by an aquaintance that this is all a conspiracy to destroy the Mother Church. After all, that 12 year old WANTED the priest, dontcha know? They taught him this at the Opus Dei “men’s retreates” he attends.

  6. 6
    No Light

    Acolyte – Spot on. More than ten years ago I had the rumours of Savile’s disgusting acts confirmed, by a colleague who’d worked in the media years before.

    Everyone knew, everyone fucking knew. In his autobiography he details avoiding police charges for sleeping with a teenage girl. He gave a signed copy to one of his victims, inscribed with “No escape! (smiley face) in the front.

    This was not hidden info. It wass in the public domain, in black and white.

    He openly defended Gary Glitter, saying there was nothing wrong with watching videos of children being raped, because he wasn’t making or selling them.

    He selected victims from approved schools, care homes and psychotic institutions. Children who were taken out like library books. Children who were told “Who’s going to believe you, over a good man like him?”

    The bastard died without ever being held to justice. His defenders are morally suspect, idiotic filth who are writiwg off the pain and trauma of the victims, who’ve spent years living in fear and shame.

    Fuck. Them.

  7. 7
    No Light

    Thanks autocorrect! “psychotic institutions” should be “psychiatric institutions”.

  8. 8
    catwhisperer

    This Brendan chap seems awfully upset about people thinking child abuse is a bad thing. Does he ever hear himself?

  9. 9
    Acolyte of Sagan

    Catwhisperer; as Shakespeare (?) would have it “Methinks he doth protest too much”.

  10. 10
    Ophelia Benson

    Not quite. “He ‘doth protest too much, methinks.’”

  11. 11
    Acolyte of Sagan

    Cheers Ophelia. I can mis-qoute from several Shakespeare plays you know. :-)

  12. 12
    No Light

    Cat and Acolyte – in my work with sex offenders I only ever found two groups of people who frothed and flailed against peoplewho wanted to out abusers. They were predators, and people who were protecting predators, and had something to gain by doing so.

    So yeah, deeply disturbing and suspect. Screaming, ranting and protecting a dead predator? WHY Brendan?

  13. 13
    Ophelia Benson

    Tedious of me! I just happen to know it, so my fingers twitch, so I type…

  14. 14
    ewanmacdonald

    I liked the part where he compared it to the Salem witch trials.

  15. 15
    leni

    No Light:

    Everyone knew, everyone fucking knew.

    I have a penchant for reading groupie forums and other forums dedicated to telling behind the scenes stories by people who work in the music and movie industry. You hear a lot from hair and make-up artists, hotel workers, wait and bar staff, and it’s typically anonymous because they don’t want to lose their jobs so you have to take it for what it is: gossip. But you see so many repeat stories from so many different people over so many years that it gets harder to dismiss as mere gossip, especially when they are accompanied with warnings. Still, obviously, caveat emptor. Most of it is really banal- so and so is a bad tipper, so and so is super nice, so and so (straight actor) is always seen in the company of 3 or 4 young gay men, that sort of thing. But, as you might have guessed, a lot of isn’t. There are stories of sexual assault, drug fueled rages, murder, you name it.

    Anyway, Jimmy Seville was one of those names that came up on these things a lot. For seriously creepy stuff, most notably necrophilia, but also for being a general perv and possibly a child molester. I had to google him just to find out who he was (this was all before his death when the shit really hit the fan). So when I’d heard he’d died I pretty much expected an avalanche of decades old stories that people had been holding back on, for whatever reason. Somehow I really doubt this “witch hunt” surprised anyone that even remotely knew the man.

  16. 16
    AsqJames

    “Witch hunt” is the wrong term, but something does strike me as a little self-serving and hypocritical in much of the media coverage.

    The right-wing press are having a field day blaming ’60s/’70s liberal ideology and attacking the BBC and NHS as institutional havens for pedophilia. The unwritten subtext is that we need a return to conservative Christian family values…presumably as espoused by those bastions of righteousness The Daily Mail (with its constant stream of “stories” about scantily clad (often barely legal or underage) celebs or children of celebs) and The Sun (turn to page 3 to find out what Sophie (19) from Colchester thinks of the situation in Syria – you can trust her ‘cos she’s got her tits out).

    There clearly were (and possibly still are) problems in those institutions which allowed Savile to do what he did. So far the response from both, while it may be less than perfect, has been positive. I hope the pressure is kept on them so that any individuals with genuine responsibility are held accountable and it isn’t all brushed under the carpet with “well, of course it was all a long time ago…things are very different now…look to the future…etc”.

    But the current focus on these long time targets of right wing ire should not be allowed to obscure the wider issues and questions which must be answered:

    1. The recent cases of abuse in Rochdale show that, if things have changed, they have not changed enough. Vulnerable children are still not given enough protection from abuse, or taken seriously enough when they report abuse, by the authorities. This is not some historical event, children in care are probably being abused now.

    2. I’m hearing calls for wide-ranging and independent investigations at the BBC. Savile’s abuse seems to have started at the nightclub he ran in Leeds, well before he started working for the BBC. I’m hearing nothing that would offer any protection to young people who never come any where near the BBC or justice for children who were abused in any other area of the entertainment industry over this period.

    3. He clearly courted relationships with both the police and Margaret Thatcher’s government (it seems she personally appointed him to chair a committee overseeing Broadmoor Hospital). What role, if any, did these relationships play in protecting him from proper investigation and accountability for so long?

    4. What were our intrepid investigative journalists doing during the decades Savile’s behaviour was apparently an open secret in media circles? As No Light has pointed out he all but outright bragged about some of his victims in his autobiography. How much effort would it have taken to firm up the rumours enough to print something while he was still alive and able to be brought to justice for his crimes?

    I repeat, I hope the pressure is kept up on the BBC and the hospitals where Savile is known to have found his victims. Just don’t think that’s the end of it.

  17. 17
    chrislawson

    The thing to remember about Brendan is that he is a contrarian. That’s his schtick. He thinks it makes him sophisticated, but in reality he picks his position from oppositionality rather than a moral code or a philosophical position and he generates arguments that are usually very poorly thought out but presented with as much righteous indignation as he can muster in order to hide the gaping lack of credibility. Like smothering a cheap sausage in tomato sauce so you can pretend it was good.

  18. 18
    xmaseveeve

    The first accusations were in 1958. They never stopped. No one listened.

  19. 19
    sambarge

    Wow. No one tell this guy about Jerry Sandusky and the “witch-hunt” that saw him convicted of raping children. It will blow his effing mind.

  20. 20
    tim rowledge, Ersatz Haderach

    Is it the elite that is perverted, or is it the elite that sees perverts under every rock?

    Are they mutually exclusive? Can’t see why that would be the case.

    I hope the accusations are baseless, not because of any wish to defend Saville but because it would mean fewer people got hurt. And whichever way the truth lies I hope that it doesn’t damage the work that Stoke-Mandeville does.

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