clinton foundation

Harvey Weinstein: Abusive Attachment?

I’ve had a few questions about Harvey Weinstein — like, what is his attachment type? Are abusive Lotharios dismissive-avoidant, or what?

If you haven’t read them, here are a few background stories:

“From Aggressive Overtures to Sexual Assault: Harvey Weinstein’s Accusers Tell Their Stories” – The New Yorker, Ronan Farrow

“The Human Stain: Why the Harvey Weinstein Story Is Worse Than You Think” – The Weekly Standard, Lee Smith

Because of his loss of power recently, he is no longer able to shield himself or punish accusers as he did when he was at the center of motion pictures and casting decisions. From Virginia Postrel’s Bloomberg story “Why Weinstein Held On For So Long and Fell So Fast”:

Communism was considered invincible. Then the fall of the Berlin Wall started a domino effect that brought down six Soviet satellites in quick succession, and soon after the Soviet Union itself. Though communism’s failures were widely understood, no one thought it vulnerable to street demonstrations. In East Berlin in 1953, Hungary in 1956, and Czechoslovakia in 1968, it had demonstrated a willingness to crush dissent brutally. Moreover, for decades on end, the members of communist-ruled societies had displayed a remarkable tolerance for tyranny and inefficiency. They remained docile and even outwardly supportive of the status quo.

For all this submissiveness, it turned out that millions had been willing to revolt all along — if enough others would also revolt and they felt sufficiently sure of escaping punishment. But no one knew exactly what needed to happen to set off a successful uprising. In retrospect, all it took was a few thousand demonstrators calling for more freedom and a regime that signaled that it was afraid of overreacting. People standing on the sidelines suddenly found the courage to join in, and the East German revolt started feeding on itself.

Before long, fear changed sides. People who had never criticized communism publicly were now afraid to be caught defending it. Genuine supporters of communism (they, too, numbered in the millions) joined the opposition. They took to pretending to have been falsifying their political preferences out of fear, like their compatriots who had genuinely felt oppressed.

Harvey Weinstein’s fall from grace fits the same pattern. Few Hollywood executives have been as powerful as he. His movies have earned hundreds of Oscar nominations. He was both admired and feared as someone who could make or break a career. As a major fundraiser for Democratic Party candidates, he had national political clout. Though he was rumored to be predator of young women, Hollywood insiders and many observers knew that he dealt ruthlessly with anyone who crossed him. Reporters who investigated his behavior found almost no one willing to speak honestly or on the record. Many people who were hurt by Weinstein suffered, we now know, for their own silence. They wanted to go public with their stories all along.

For his behavior to draw public criticism, it was not enough for Weinstein’s behavior to be widely known. Potential complainers needed to know that other victims and witnesses would back them up. They also needed to believe that Weinstein’s supporters or the press would not smear their reputations. It needed to be sufficiently likely that the early movers would be greeted with sympathy rather than condemnation.

A number of accusers are probably exaggerating or confabulating to pile on since a story of your encounter with him is now a net positive for your notice and career. But as with Bill Cosby, the numbers suggest many of the reports are true.

His “production line” for having starlets delivered into private situations so he could pressure them into sex had to have been enabled by helpful staff, agents, and others who could have blown the whistle, including a complicit media who were easily stopped from reporting stories as they came up. Weinstein controlled ad revenues, contacts both professional and political, and knowledge of others useful for blackmail. His participation in the corrupt Clinton-Democratic machine shielded him, as it did Bill Clinton, from the worst attacks by feminists and reporters. It has come out now because their power has waned, and the Clinton Foundation influence-peddling machine is dying.

This kind of methodical abuse is outside the usual attachment type considerations. Weinstein was closer to a psychopath-narcissist, with a special extra dash of sadism — he got off on the power to force beautiful young women to submit to his will, to degrade them with his sperm and get away with shaming them without consequence to himself. His insecurity was expressed differently than on the usual anxious-to-dismissive axis.

But this story shouldn’t produce a witch hunt to criminalize or punish anyone who commits an error in judgment.

If rude and clumsy approaches were crimes, we’d all be in jail (well, almost all.) When I was young and reasonably good-looking, I got hit on a lot in venues that invited that (bars, parties, etc.) It wouldn’t occur to me to think of myself as grievously wronged with the first grope — the offender gets rebuked and avoided, with a wagging finger and “tsk!”

One good example of a misdemeanor offense: one of the incidents being talked about has Philip K Dick’s daughter in a cab with the Amazon Films producer after a party going to another party. He’s aggressive and pushy and profane. So what? She knew there was no danger to her participation, he had clearly overdone the drinking, she immediately reported it, it didn’t happen again. That’s a common event for anyone who goes to mixed drinking/business/social events. Guy was presumably warned.

The workplaces where pressure is constant and one rebuke doesn’t stop the approaches are where the legally actionable stuff happens. Weinstein had a whole system and cooperative employees/agents/staff, quite a different thing from an occasional drunken mistake.

Which is where the neo-Puritan, fragile flowers of femininity problem shows up. You can‘t claim equality and go out in the world and then turn around and claim privilege to never be offended or crudely approached. Men tend to excuse one or even several offenses from their fellow employees before going on the warpath. Woman are being trained to claim a right to success and a right to special treatment beyond what others enjoy. “I am good and strong on a team” does not quite jibe with “Every offense to my dignity should be punished by expulsion of the offender.”

More reading:

A Clinton Christmas Carol
“High Tech Under Diversity Pressure
Ban the Box, Credit Scores, Current Salaries: The Road to Hiring Blind
HireVue, Video Interviews, and AI Job Searches
“Death by HR” – Diversity Programs Don’t Work

Follow the Money, Not Bathroom Laws or Nazi Captain America

Captain America: Hail Hydra! - Marvel Comics

Captain America: Hail Hydra! – Marvel Comics

We’ve had seven years of the Obama administration’s orchestrated distractions. The President gained the office promising a new era, supported by “Baptists” (in this case, idealistic Progressives and voters hopeful he would bridge party and racial gaps — see Bootleggers and Baptists) and “bootleggers” (crony capitalists and the finance industry, which placed their sympathizers in Treasury and Justice to make sure no true reprisals or reform would occur and that TARP and subsidy money would finance their ventures.) The complicit media help promote whatever story the administration is selling each week — independent reporting is expensive while rewritten PR releases from government press offices and video of staged news events fills TV news time and newspaper column inches cheaply.

The United States has a wide variety of special interests whose contention prevents a single coalition from taking over and doing too much damage. The effect over time, though, has been to expand government and its regulation of private businesses to increase the rewards of buying political favors. The Obama administration’s record of boondoggles and project failures is clear, but by dominating news coverage with their talking points, they have distracted citizens who haven’t directly suffered job loss, lost their home, or had their daughter murdered by a criminal immigrant released in a “sanctuary city.”

Gender Free Bathroom

Gender Free Bathroom

The latest non-problem designed to distract is the “bathroom wars.” For decades, transgendered people have used the bathroom they were “dressed for” in relative safety and obscurity, since civilized people don’t expose their genitalia or accost others for looking unusual while relieving themselves. Good manners suggest intentionally not noticing superficial factors of others when forced into the intimacy of the bathroom or locker room, and most people have the good manners and good sense not to react to such things. Similarly, while not completely unheard of, it’s very rare (and illegal) for men to accost women in restrooms or locker rooms.

So there’s no information other than anecdotal suggesting trans people are being harassed in large numbers, or that women or girls are being harassed. And there’s certainly no legal authority under Title IX for Federal-level regulation of bathroom use. There’s really no reason for any regulation of bathroom use, given that such rules are not enforceable or even reasonable when there are many common situations where labels are ignored, as when women duck into the men’s room because the line at “their” bathroom is too long. This is a fine example of customary usage that ain’t broke, so don’t fix it — all fixes are more trouble than leaving it up to custom and common sense.

But much of the media attention not spent following Trump’s latest comments is going to bathroom laws and public posturing related to the issue, like the latest stars to boycott North Carolina while still planning concerts in countries where gays are beaten and jailed. The President and his minions get to appear to be protectors of the weak while their outraged opponents waste effort on an issue that distracts from removing them and their kind from power.

Meanwhile, much social network and news chatter in recent weeks centers around Captain America and the recent decision by the current Marvel comic book writers to rewrite him as an agent of Hydra all these years — a hero originated to stand for American values in opposition to the then-current Third Reich has been revealed to be a Nazi himself, or close enough. The outrage mills are keeping this one going, giving free publicity to the comic book writers and taking up residence in people’s heads.

In both cases, behind-the-scenes interests are jockeying for influence to continue to steal your money and divert it to their ends — their own power and wealth. By keeping the issues of subsidies and crony capitalism too complex for mass understanding and sending up clouds of disinformational chaff like these symbolic, emotional issues, much of the voting population has been bamboozled into fighting each other over symbolic issues while the bootleggers loot the Treasury.

And in that confusion, men like Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders who offer simple, authoritarian solutions to the problems of the status quo corporatist government appear to offer a way out. Neither had the support of the big money interests, but if either won the presidency you can be sure they will attract the same corrupt interests to support and control them.

So spend less time getting outraged about relatively unimportant issues, and more time following the money. Notice how anti-Trump protestors are organized and funded by unions like the SEIU and racist organizations like La Raza, while those same organizations are core Democratic supporters and have been funded illegally by diverting Justice Department settlement funds from the victims of mortgage companies to Democrat-supporting agencies.

Notice that the Clinton Foundation targets its grants to gain good PR or influence while collecting tax-free “donations” from shady and even criminal overseas governments and companies. It’s part of the Clintons’ global influence-peddling machine, built up over decades to allow legal bribery of the former President Bill and Secretary of State and now President-in-Waiting Hillary.

The book Clinton Cash by Peter Schweizer documents these indirect bribery schemes:

In 2000, Bill and Hillary Clinton owed millions of dollars in legal debt. Since then, they’ve earned over $130 million. Where did the money come from? Most people assume that the Clintons amassed their wealth through lucrative book deals and high-six-figure fees for speaking gigs. Now, Peter Schweizer shows who is really behind those enormous payments.

In his New York Times bestselling books Extortion and Throw Them All Out, Schweizer detailed patterns of official corruption in Washington that led to congressional resignations and new ethics laws. In Clinton Cash, he follows the Clinton money trail, revealing the connection between their personal fortune, their “close personal friends,” the Clinton Foundation, foreign nations, and some of the highest ranks of government.

Schweizer reveals the Clinton’s troubling dealings in Kazakhstan, Colombia, Haiti, and other places at the “wild west” fringe of the global economy. In this blockbuster exposé, Schweizer merely presents the troubling facts he’s uncovered. Meticulously researched and scrupulously sourced, filled with headline-making revelations, Clinton Cash raises serious questions of judgment, of possible indebtedness to an array of foreign interests, and ultimately, of fitness for high public office.

Some of their schemes — like the Haitian telecomm contracts they wangled for supporter’s companies that skimmed fees from every telephone call between Haitians and their US relatives — are infuriating in that they stole from people least able to afford padded bills. Haitians have correctly figured out that the Clintons only pretend to care about them.

Jonathan Katz, author of The Big Truck That Went By: How the World Came to Save Haiti and Left Behind a Disaster about Haitian relief efforts of the past two decades, had this to say about Clinton’s influence in Haiti:

There’s nowhere Clinton had more influence or respect when she became Secretary of State than in Haiti, and it was clear that she planned to use that to make Haiti the proving ground for her vision of American power. By now I’d imagine she was expecting to constantly be pointing to Haiti on the campaign trail as one of the great successes of her diplomatic career. Instead it’s one of her biggest disappointments by nearly any measure, with the wreckage of the Martelly administration she played a larger role than anyone in installing being the biggest and latest example.

Death by HR: How Affirmative Action Cripples OrganizationsDeath by HR: How Affirmative Action Cripples Organizations

[From Death by HR: How Affirmative Action Cripples Organizations,  available now in Kindle and trade paperback.]

The first review is in: by Elmer T. Jones, author of The Employment Game. Here’s the condensed version; view the entire review here.

Corporate HR Scrambles to Halt Publication of “Death by HR”

Nobody gets a job through HR. The purpose of HR is to protect their parent organization against lawsuits for running afoul of the government’s diversity extortion bureaus. HR kills companies by blanketing industry with onerous gender and race labor compliance rules and forcing companies to hire useless HR staff to process the associated paperwork… a tour de force… carefully explains to CEOs how HR poisons their companies and what steps they may take to marginalize this threat… It is time to turn the tide against this madness, and Death by HR is an important research tool… All CEOs should read this book. If you are a mere worker drone but care about your company, you should forward an anonymous copy to him.


Levellers and Redistributionists: The Feudal Underpinnings of Socialism

Levellers' Manifest - Wikimedia

Levellers’ Manifest – Wikimedia

In the United States, we inherit much of our Constitution and political thought from English common-law models. Throwing off the tyranny of inherited privileges, every citizen was deemed equal under the law, with basic rights that were not to be trampled by government; government’s role was to defend those rights against infringement by others, whether other citizens or external states. In Enlightenment England, the Crown came to be viewed as the abstracted ideal of government power, to be used only for the mutual benefit of all citizens. The US Revolution further clarified this doctrine by eliminating the Crown and replacing it with the written Constitution.

So whence came the impulse to take from some citizens to give to others who had been treated unfairly? One of the early movements in the English Civil War, the Levellers of 1645-46, were intellectual forebears of the idea of redistribution. They wished to remove the special rights of nobility and landed gentry, and make all citizens equal under the law, a radical thought at the time. But of course the system they were rebelling against was, by our standards, a kleptocracy, with the privileged early warlords taking and holding landed estates which were the primitive support for the early centralized governments. In return for providing fighting forces and support for the Crown, local warlords were given title to large territories and worked the land using serfs, collecting taxes for the Crown. Under the feudal system, trade and industry were looked down on, and wealth could be stolen by authorized brigands from those who had worked for it, since power came from arms and ultimately could not be held without the protection of the Crown. So the tale of Robin Hood, seen today as stealing from the rich to give to the poor, was a story of a true social justice warrior, taking from the tax collectors and the wealthy thieves of feudal government, returning wealth to those who had earned it, the serfs and free citizens.

Much of the belief system of European-style Labor and Socialist parties dates back to the feudal days when the Balzac quote was true: “Behind every great fortune lies a great crime,” which morally justifies efforts to redistribute wealth from rich to poor. The United States went further than England in establishing a system of free citizens, equal under the law, who could usually rely on the protection of their rights and property by the new government. Inherited titles and lands were absent and power and wealth more broadly distributed and more often acquired through hard work and intelligent enterprise. Until recently, the US was home to great wealth generated primarily by free enterprise and innovation, and there was little moral justification for redistributive policies.

There are many places left in the world, however, where wealth is generated by government influence and corrupt monopolies, where business must bribe and pay tribute to pols, and where the wealthy support the corrupt government that has favored their special privileges. And some of that corruption is coming back to the United States as our corrupt pols have figured out how to peddle their influence to foreign powers and interests in return for contributions to their own power and campaign financing. The Clintons have been especially successful at this, with just one example being their Haitian exploits. In the late 1990s, kickbacks from the Haitian telephone monopoly enriched connected Clinton Democrats at the expense of every poor Haitian family calling relatives in the US.

The Clintons and their foundation are at the center of a new feudal network of patronage and influence-peddling. Vassals do their dirty work and protect them from consequences, and in return get contracts or jobs with nonprofits or government agencies. Protected by their influence, the Clintons and their minions lie, cheat, and cover up malfeasance with impunity.

Kleptocratic regimes grow very slowly if at all, with advances mostly due to imported technology. Individuals in kleptocracies know hard work that raises them to the level of being noticed will result in a powerful person stealing what they have earned, and often killing or exiling them. The explosion of growth in the West only came about because the rule of law and protection of property rights became more reliable there; and the most ambitious people in poorly-governed countries around the world worked to reach the US and other liberal states to escape the punishment of success in their homelands.

As this lesson has been buried under layers of permits and bureaucracy in the US, the rule of law has degenerated into rule of administrative law, with smothering red tape and overregulation. The black markets in labor and goods that are prominent features in kleptocracies are becoming more and more important here, with cash labor combined with social welfare payments keeping more people in the gray zone, dependent on government and trapped by the high price of going aboveground.

Growth has been steadily declining across the developed world, with central bankers trying to keep the game going by artificially pumping created cash into the economies and mispricing debt to force investment in more risky enterprises. This has inflated stock and property markets and made the already-rich richer at the expense of workers and savers. The levers of the power squelching growth and limiting new housing in desirable cities are held by an elite class of property owners, government, and academics, and the situation of young workers in places like San Francisco and New York is analogous to the situation of serfs in feudal systems: attracted to the cities by opportunities and the clustering of other young creative people, they work hard and spend all of their income on bare survival. Like the Levellers, they wonder how the deck was so stacked against them by the previous generations, and call for a new deal. And like the Levellers, many see theft from the wealthy as just, never having been taught economics or the horrendous history of socialist regimes, because their schools were dominated by progressives who indoctrinate them in the goodness of government solutions to the problems of global warming, pollution, and economic inequality.

The better remedy is removing most economic activity from the grasp of government. Having thrown off the monopolies imposed by Britain on tea, for example, the framers of the Constitution did not include regulation of commerce among the enumerated powers, and until the New Deal, it was common for the Federal courts to strike down state and local laws that tried to restrain commerce by granting monopolies or fixing prices. But since the New Deal, FDR’s effort to run a managed economy, the Supreme Court has allowed almost every kind of commerce to be regulated by Federal and State law, applying a rational basis test — if there is at least some chain of reasoning provided that connects the law with a general government purpose, the court has deemed the law constitutional. This has given us restrictive zoning, rent control, local cable TV and telecomm monopolies, local minimum wage laws, licensing of even the most harmless services like hair-braiding, and set up legislators as the ultimate collector of tolls on business in the form of campaign contributions and lobbying.

Of course there are externalities requiring regulation; the most obvious example is pollution, which imposes costs on others that justify regulation. But laws that were originally promoted for the general welfare, like zoning, eventually were used to capture benefits for certain people — notably owners of existing homes and buildings — at the expense of others, notably newcomers and landowners. When the word “unregulated” began to be used as a scare word by popular media to imply danger in any commercial activity not regulated by a bureau or government, the triumph of the bureaucrats was complete; now we pay more and get less for everything from housing to medical care to cable TV and Internet service, because competition in those areas has been suppressed by law. Incomes are high for many of those employed in those sectors, but millions of young people are un- or under-employed because the businesses they might have worked for can’t start up under such restrictive conditions.

Death by HR: How Affirmative Action Cripples OrganizationsDeath by HR: How Affirmative Action Cripples Organizations

[From Death by HR: How Affirmative Action Cripples Organizations,  available now in Kindle and trade paperback.]

The first review is in: by Elmer T. Jones, author of The Employment Game. Here’s the condensed version; view the entire review here.

Corporate HR Scrambles to Halt Publication of “Death by HR”

Nobody gets a job through HR. The purpose of HR is to protect their parent organization against lawsuits for running afoul of the government’s diversity extortion bureaus. HR kills companies by blanketing industry with onerous gender and race labor compliance rules and forcing companies to hire useless HR staff to process the associated paperwork… a tour de force… carefully explains to CEOs how HR poisons their companies and what steps they may take to marginalize this threat… It is time to turn the tide against this madness, and Death by HR is an important research tool… All CEOs should read this book. If you are a mere worker drone but care about your company, you should forward an anonymous copy to him.


More reading on other topics:

Jane Jacobs’ Monstrous Hybrids: Guardians vs Commerce
The Great Progressive Stagnation vs. Dynamism
Death by HR: How Affirmative Action is Crippling America
Death by HR: The End of Merit in Civil Service
Corrupt Feedback Loops: Public Employee Unions
Death by HR: History and Practice of Affirmative Action and the EEOC
Civil Service: Woodrow Wilson’s Progressive Dream
Bootleggers and Baptists
Corrupt Feedback Loops: Justice Dept. Extortion
Corrupt Feedback Loops, Goldman Sachs: More Justice Dept. Extortion
Death by HR: The Birth and Evolution of the HR Department
Death by HR: The Simple Model of Project Labor
Levellers and Redistributionists: The Feudal Underpinnings of Socialism
Sons of Liberty vs. National Front
Trump World: Looking Backward
Minimum Wage: The Parable of the Ladder
Selective Outrage
Culture Wars: Co-Existence Through Limited Government
Social Justice Warriors, Jihadists, and Neo-Nazis: Constructed Identities
Tuitions Inflated, Product Degraded, Student Debts Unsustainable
The Morality of Glamour

On Affirmative Action and Social Policy:

Affirmative Action: Chinese, Indian-Origin Citizens in Malaysia Oppressed
Affirmative Action: Caste Reservation in India
Diversity Hires: Pressure on High Tech<a
Title IX Totalitarianism is Gender-Neutral
Public Schools in Poor Districts: For Control Not Education
Real-Life “Hunger Games”: Soft Oppression Destroys the Poor
The Social Decay of Black Neighborhoods (And Yours!)
Child Welfare Ideas: Every Child Gets a Government Guardian!
“Income Inequality” Propaganda is Just Disguised Materialism

The greatest hits from (Science Fiction topics):

Fear is the Mindkiller
Mirror Neurons and Irene Gallo
YA Dystopias vs Heinlein et al: Social Justice Warriors Strike Again
Selective Outrage
Sons of Liberty vs. National Front
“Tomorrowland”: Tragic Misfire
The Death of “Wired”: Hugo Awards Edition
Hugos, Sad Puppies 3, and Direct Knowledge
Selective Outrage and Angry Tribes
Men of Honor vs Victim Culture
SFF, Hugos, Curating the Best
“Why Aren’t There More Women Futurists?”
Science Fiction Fandom and SJW warfare

More reading on the military:

US Military: From No Standing Armies to Permanent Global Power
US Military: The Desegration Experience
The VA Scandals: Death by Bureaucracy

If you have a good story or anecdote from your organization, please email it to I can use a few good tales (anonymized, of course) to illustrate the problems.