[The following is a Guest View. As such, the opinions expressed in it do not necessarily reflect the editorial position of the Frank Report.]
This is in response to the article The Sisters Who First Tried to Take Down Jeffrey Epstein, where it was written, “Both Epstein and Pimp Maxwell allegedly engaged in sexual relations with Maria Farmer.”
Maria Farmer was 25 years old at the time. She was an adult, so there’s nothing improper about this.
Now, Epstein was a grade-A asshole in my opinion and I have no doubt that he did many illegal and highly unethical things, but this was not one of them.
Apparently, he paid her $6k for one of her paintings, which was half the asking price but still probably far more than what the frightful daubing was worth.
Part of the deal was he would promote her work and he also took her on as one of his staff. It all seems a little sordid to me, but she was an adult at the time and if she wanted to make some kind of deal with the old fart, that’s her business.
Let’s be clear: Life is not a tale of pure good and evil, of victims and oppressors, of the good and the bad.
One of the reasons assholes like Epstein and Weinstein can surround themselves with young beautiful actresses, aspiring models and painters is that these young ladies are perfectly aware of their market value.
Somebody like Epstein walks into a room and takes an interest in them and they see an advantage to be had.
RE: The Weinstein affair and the #MeToo movement it inspired, French actress Catherine Deneuve had an interesting response.
She is somebody who knows a thing or two about making it in film from back in the bad old days, and in France yet.
She had many an improper advance to fend off as a young beautiful actress, and yet she had little sympathy for the phony innocent act of #MeToo Hollywood.
She was one of 100 French women in academia and the arts who questioned this rising narrative of women as victim.
One of the major issues with it is its tendency to treat women like helpless children who have no agency.
Maria Farmer is being treated here as if she were a child, as if having sex with her was perverted, if not criminal. As if she was a child who was violated. As if at 25 years of age, she didn’t know the score, as if she couldn’t be expected to understand what Epstein was after. He was paying her for sex.
This is where the Epstein and Weinstein sagas get complicated.
Young aspiring actresses took meetings with Weinstein knowing the man’s character. He was a pig. There’s no excusing what he did and I make no attempt to excuse it.
But these aspiring actresses wanted something from him, and many were willing to pay the price.
That they now expect to be treated as purely innocent victims is a bit thick.
Catherine Deneuve has called them on their bullshit. And has been vilified for it.
Raniere and his NXIVM cult and even DOS were similarly complicated.
The difference with him was the collateral. Another word for blackmail.
His women were – largely – coerced. Even there, though, it’s undeniable that most of them were at least partially willing. And that’s where it gets complicated. Life generally is.
Sex trafficking laws were originally intended, like the human trafficking laws that preceded them, to apply to foreign women smuggled across borders who were held in virtual captivity and forced to work, or provide sex, without pay.
Sex trafficking law carries a very low standard of proof, which was probably originally seen as a good thing. But it is being applied expansively now, and in a way that may begin to make civil libertarians uneasy.
I’m glad Raniere is in prison, he richly deserves it.
But he belongs in prison mainly for defrauding people with his worthless “tech”, for running a cult.
The reason he’s in prison though is because of the scandal of DOS and branding women. Even though those women all kinda sorta were devoted to him, and all were kinda sorta willing to be branded.
What I’m afraid of is all this current moral panic getting out of control.
Sex is already being seen as something dirty, as something exploitative, as something men do to women, a form of victimization.
It’s a return to Puritanism.
Editor’s Note: Actaeon has raised some interesting points – especially with respect to the expanded use of sex trafficking laws to go after people like Raniere and R. Kelly.
As noted in an earlier posting, this is a relatively new addition to the prosecutorial playbook – but one that is likely to see increased usage in the future. Especially when it’s combined with the use of RICO statutes.
Sex trafficking convictions ensure that those who are found guilty will serve at least 15 years in prison.
And the RICO statute allows prosecutors to present evidence of crimes that would not be prosecutable by themselves because of statute-of-limitations issues or other bars.
Do you support these types of prosecutions – or, like Actaeon, do you see them as going too far?
[…] Epstein ‘Victim’ Maria Farmer Is Being Treated as If She Were a Child Who Was Violated &… […]
Re Actaeon & his articles
I have to wonder why Actaeon feels so strongly about female sexuality, false victimization, and the #METOO movement….
Harvey Weinstein and Jeffrey Epstein were both prolific rapists, yet Acteon’s main issue is whether or not a few women are taking advantage of the current legal and media situation….
In his latest piece, Acteon even feels the need to attack Maria Farmer’s artistic ability as if her artwork directly reflects who she is as a human being. Acteon is incredulous that a victim and a disingenuous person can be one in the same.
Previously, Acteon has commented that all men are secretly sexually attracted to girls as young as 13 or 14. Acteon also stated how in ancient times sex with minors was okay. Clearly Acteon has some interesting proclivities.
Acteon’s alias is one of the most psychologically telling aliases in my opinion on the frank report…
…… The real Actaeon is famous hunter from Greek mythology, who glimpsed a female Goddess bathing naked and was turned into an animal. I wonder why “Actaeon” chose to be Actaeon on the Frankreport…..
…….I guess he identifies rather implausible as a victim of female sexually?
Typo Sexuality not sexually
We didn’t know that Cosby was drugging and raping women, and that Weinstein was serial raping women UNTIL the media finally reported it!! So why would the author assume that a 25 yr old would “know” that Epstein was a serial predator, only interested in one thing, UNTIL after it became public knowledge in 2008. How is this not victim-blaming?
Furthermore, how would the author feel if he was a teenage victim of Kevin Spacey or worse, Bryan Singer?
The “you should’ve known” stance doesn’t make any sense when the majority of us clearly didn’t know.
Indeed. I also think the related “they should’ve known better” stance doesn’t make any sense, either, when we now have many examples of victims being manipulated or coerced into doing things they would not have agreed to under normal, straightforward circumstances – whether or not we fully understand the mechanisms that allow such undue influence to occur.
It’s related to why the federal government and many states enacted “cooling off period” laws that allow certain types of sales contracts with the highest potential for abusive use of high-pressure sales techniques, such as door to door sales, to be canceled after the buyer has had a period of reflection.
Were you born yesterday? You don’t know when a man or woman is ‘interested’? C’mon, cut the BS. You’re reply is pure ideology. Read Catherine Devenue’s statement once more.
I think that society and the law are still finding their way in trying to judge cases of psychological coercion and undue influence.
There was a time not all that long ago when it was assumed that 12 or 13 year old girls could be assumed to consent to sex with adults, and when the police would simply return an abused spouse to their abuser unless shackles or guns were involved (and maybe even then, still). The pendulum may have have swung too far in some cases, but it’s not clear where the balance really should be.
We learned from the NXIVM case that adults can be unduly influenced. We also know, or should, from outright human trafficking cases including prostitution, that people can be effectively entrapped without the use of shackles or guns.
I never had the impression Farmer was underage. Her sister was, but not Maria. While women can often turn on the sex appeal to get their way, men (and sometimes women) need to understand that when a woman says no to sex, it means no. I also understand, and have experienced, that this is a continuum, where the situation can be misread, get pretty far along before resistance is given, having later regret and accusations of rape, etc. So it is complicated, but the bottom line is no means no.
“But he belongs in prison mainly for defrauding people with his worthless “tech”, for running a cult.” While I agree Raniere/Salzman’s “tech” is useless, there was a willing buyer and a willing seller. There is NOTHING illegal about this. There are also no laws against operating a cult, under the First Amendment Freedom of Speech, Religion, Association, etc.
I am 100% in favor of leveraging the RICO law to go after criminals. Whether it’s sex trafficking or MLM scams, there are usually small groups of people working together to take advantage of others. The message must be sent that when you cooperate/coordinate with others to spread out the blame to the point it is difficult to prosecute the crimes, RICO will, and should, be used to counter this approach. I highly recommend watch the film “8 Days” to see this technique in action. Amazon offers it for $2.
I enjoyed your article post and commentary from the 27th about the sisters.
Probably most did not know.
Did some hear he was crude, probably, but did they know he had a history of sexually assaulting actresses he met with, yet the actresses still me with him? No.
You are mixing up the fact that many well-connected people in show biz heard the rumors, but this wasn’t reported in the press, and the rumors didn’t filter down to “young aspiring actresses” who had few contacts and even fewer people who chose to warn them.
Totally agree with this. People often erroneously attempt to impute what they know onto others.
Sex is commerce.
Actaeon does have some good points.
I believe that the #MeToo movement is really an over reaction to Donald Trump.
Bill Clinton engaged in behavior that in some cases can be characterized as rape.
An Arkansas businesswoman Kathleen Willey described behavior by Clinton when he was state Attorney General that was clearly sexual assault.
And how did American left-wing feminists respond to evidence of Clinton’s sexual crimes?
They defended him and attacked his accusers.
“The women were trailer trash.”
“Drag a 20 dollar bill through a trailer court and this is what you get.”
“Gloria Steinem and Joy Behar opinions
In a 1998 op-ed for the New York Times, feminist icon Gloria Steinem said of Willey and (Paula) Jones, “Mr. Clinton seems to have made a clumsy sexual pass, then accepted rejection.” This article received some criticism when it was published. In 2017, it was described in The Atlantic as “notorious”: “It slut-shamed, victim-blamed, and age-shamed; it urged compassion for and gratitude to the man the women accused.”
“In 2016, on the U.S. television program The View, co-host Joy Behar referred to Bill Clinton’s accusers as “tramps”. Behar apologized for the sexual slur shortly afterwards, but she would not have if the apology was not self serving ving.”
And Maureen Dowd, a Washington Post columnist who is quite liberal, has responded negatively to #MeToo by saying “Save Me From the Puritans.”
“”Spare Me the Purity Racket” Maureen Dowd
“Yo, proletariat: If the Democratic Party is going to be against chocolate, high heels, parties and fun, you’ve lost me. And I’ve got some bad news for you about 2020.”
“The progressives are the modern Puritans. The Massachusetts Bay Colony is alive and well on the Potomac and Twitter.”