Winner 2013 Webby Awards for Best Political Website
Top Banner, Site wide
Apr 18, 2014

 Choose a size
Text Size

Top Leaderboard, Site wide

On Climate, Business as Usual




The Divide


Truthdig Bazaar more items

 
Arts and Culture

Polanski Preps for a Fight After Arrest

Email this item Email    Print this item Print    Share this item... Share

Posted on Sep 28, 2009
Polanski
AP Photo/Roberto Pfeil

Director Roman Polanski’s 1977 sex crime case has become an international and intergenerational saga, now that members of at least four governments have become involved, the former minor in question has grown up and requested that the issue be put to rest, and the original judge has been dead since 1993. However, after Polanski’s arrest last Saturday in Zurich, it’s clear this drama is far from over.

The filmmaker, 76, who holds French and Polish citizenship, was en route to accept a lifetime achievement award last weekend when he was detained by Swiss police—a move that angered some of his allies from the entertainment industry and added yet another controversial chapter to his tumultuous life story and, as the Los Angeles Times’ Patrick Goldstein noted on Sunday, made Polanski a fugitive once again. He will probably contest an expected extradition request from the United States, but according to his lawyer, Polanski’s in a “fighting mood.”  —KA

Update: Click here to see a petition signed by dozens of Polanski’s allies in the international entertainment community, including Pedro Almodovar, Wes Anderson, Jeanne Moreau, Monica Bellucci and Wim Wenders.

BBC:

Mr Polanski’s agent, Jeff Berg, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme the arrest was “surprising because Roman for the last 12, 15 years has lived in Switzerland, he has a home, he travels there, he works there”.

Justice spokesman Guido Balmer said the difference with this particular trip was that authorities knew exactly when and where Mr Polanski would arrive.

Swiss Justice Minister Eveline Widmer-Schlumpf said that because of agreements with the US, “when Mr Polanski arrived we had no choice from a legal point of view but to arrest him”.

Los Angeles District Attorney Steve Cooley comments on Roman Polanski’s arrest

The Swiss media has rounded on the authorities.

“Switzerland let a guest walk into a nasty trap. We should be ashamed,” said tabloid newspaper Blick.

Daily paper Le Temps said Switzerland had “shocked film buffs and friends of the arts with its kindly and efficient co-operation with US justice. It has angered Poland and France”.

Read more


New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

By christian96, October 4, 2009 at 10:31 pm Link to this comment

I just read the petition signed by French and
European film makers in support of their friend
Roman Polanski.  Poor Charles Manson.  If he could
only had fled to Europe and learned to act, direct,
or produce films, he probably could have had a
petition signed for him.

Report this

By christian96, October 4, 2009 at 10:13 pm Link to this comment

Hans Meulenbroek—-What do you mean “No way he would
have been arrested in Paris?”

Report this

By Hans Meulenbroek, October 4, 2009 at 12:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“....Polanski originally plead guilty on the plea bargain offered to him, when the judge then violated it after Polanski had plead guilty. The judge was going to sentence Polanski to a 50 year prison sentence to be a hero to perverted and punitive dingbats and possibly a political career. So Polanski had no choice but to flee, as any sane person would have done.”

“If this girl was forcibly raped, which is not clear since her mother tended to put her and her sister in the way of men who could enhance a Hollywood career. If force was used, this was indeed a brutal crime. Which Polanski plead guilty to thirty odd years ago. The American plotriacy re-opening it now to inflict more punishment thirty years later is disgusting. But not to many Americans, including American Progressives, who think this kind of perverted punishment is a form of justice”


Folktruther’s comments present us returning demonstrations of incoherent and morally inconsistant ‘reasoning’.
Polanski definitively ‘acted out’ his dark side by forcibly raping this then 13 year old girl 32 years ago. Polanski then and now got the notion that what he has done with this girl was not kosher. There were going to be consequences for his wrong doing. And guess what? Maybe he had pushed his luck too far. The American ‘perverted and punitive dingbats’ had no real intentions to be soft on him. ‘So Polanski had no choice but to flee, as any sane person would have done’. Wait a moment here. Polanski is without any doubt a great and talented artist, but at the same time he is NOT SANE. He is a pervert, maybe so caught in the nets of the ‘perverted’ judicial system, that was simply alerted or triggered by the recent documentary on the Polanski rape and stewed the whole case high on the agenda of the LA law office again.That is how obnoxious ‘the media’ sort out their effect in this day and age. It has NOTHING to do with “... many Americans, including American progressives, who think this kind of perverted punishment is a form of justice”. What goes around comes around, and probably the time had cometh for Polanski to face the music in his lifetime. Something he might not engage into all that reluctantly after all. Get it over with, end the chase and get a -fair- trial that indeed considers the term of 30+ years everything went down.No free lunch for this man who in the end is being portrayed as a victim himself. In this respect the Swiss authorities played their historic role of serving up ‘anybody’ hunted by others on a platter. I mean: No way he would have been arrested in Paris.

Report this

By Folktruther, October 2, 2009 at 12:22 pm Link to this comment

Yeah, from the tanscript the episode appears scummy.  But that’s a different matter from extraditing Polanski 30 years laer after legal misconduct and the matter has been otherwised settled between them. If the law, in Arcissies’s phrase, did not ‘clown around’ the matter could have been settled at the time.

It leaves unchanged the central matter that this is how the Prog media diverts and distracts the population from our central concerns.

Report this
thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, October 2, 2009 at 1:20 am Link to this comment

Note: Truthdig has blacklisted the link to Michael Seitzman’s article “The Good Kind Of Rape”, concerning this matter, found on The Huffington Post.

Report this

By herewegogain, October 1, 2009 at 9:28 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Folktruther, there are numerous links on the Internet to the young girl’s testimony of what happened. I will leave it to you to examine why you felt compelled NOT to seek this information out for yourself.

Here is one: http://www.cbsnews.com/blogs/2009/10/01/crimesider/entry5355502.shtml

Report this

By Folktruther, October 1, 2009 at 9:11 pm Link to this comment

Herewego, transcipt of WHAT testimony?  My underestand was that there was no trial involving testimony; it was plea bargained away.  That there is no court evidence of what actually happened that night.  Am I wrong? was there actually a trial with people testifying under oath?

Report this

By herewegoagain, October 1, 2009 at 7:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Folktruther writes: “It doesn’t matter as long as the girls don’t get pregnant, and there is no force involved. Sexuality is a great blessing that young people possess and they should enjoy it outside of the purvey of their diapproving elders, who may no longer possess it and pile on the young who do.”

I think you have twisted views on children and sexuality. And I think you are trying to justify these views for YOUR OWN benefit - not out of any sort of benevolent desire to see “young people” enjoy a “great blessing.”

Have you read the transcript of the (at the time) 13 year old girl’s testimony of what happened? She said she repeatedly, repeatedly told Polanski “No.” She told him she wanted to go home. She tried to move away from him. She stated she was too afraid of him to vigorously fight back.

The Mad Loon writes: “I can’t believe all the people who defend this scumbag. I have to wonder would he have received the plea deal if he wasn’t famous.”

No, he wouldn’t have. Are you kidding?? A 43 year old man who plies a 13 year old girl with drugs and alcohol then sodomizes her???

And most of the people defending him here wouldn’t be doing so if he wasn’t famous.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, October 1, 2009 at 5:48 pm Link to this comment

C96:
He admitted it—the facts aren’t in dispute.

But FT is morally bankrupt.  Sex between a 43 year old man and a 13 year old girl he seduces into taking drugs and alcohol is RAPE.  It is not about sex and the wonders and variations of it.

This isn’t sexual exploration and experimentation between teen peers. It is sexual exploitation of a child by an adult. 

It’s ironic that McKenzie Phillips is relating how her father drugged and raped her and said years later that they were “making love”.  SHE knew he was raping her.  Sick f*** making excuses for the harm he did her.

I’m sure Polanski is the same.

But MY concern is for our justice system and for the victim.  If Polanski benefits from it, that’s the price we have to pay.

Report this

By christian96, October 1, 2009 at 9:25 am Link to this comment

Was it proven that Polanski drugged the 13 year old
then raped her. If so, he broke the law.  Unless
there exists a statue of limitations he should stand
trial for breaking the law.  It’s that simple.  All
the opinions such as Folktruther’s “religious
perversions” are irrelevant.

Report this
Blackspeare's avatar

By Blackspeare, October 1, 2009 at 9:05 am Link to this comment

This may be another example of a “Michael Jackson” type sting operation where a mother gives over her kid to a wealthy and unstable celebrity in hopes that he will take advantage and create a situation where a crime can be claimed and a huge civil suit made to reap a shit-load of money.  We know MJ paid out substantial sums and with that kind of reward any hurt from the “crime” is soon forgotten.  We don’t know what the settlement was in the Polanski case, but it probably sufficient to make the family quite comfortable.  As they say money talks, nobody walks.  I hope I don’t appear cynical!

Report this

By Folktruther, October 1, 2009 at 8:12 am Link to this comment

I don’t remember, Ray.  Usually my acquantance with popular culture is limited to determining why Jen is pissed at Brad while in the checkout line in the supermarket.  this episode is similar, except I happen to live in LA and am somewhat familair with celebrity culture, and am familiar with the corruption of the LA legal system.

It is not uncommon for women to exchange sexual favors for glamourous jobs, and not only in Hollywood.  Some do, some don’t, some detest it, some are sexual adventurers, as men often are, and I have no feelings about it except if there is cumplusion involved.  Some girls become sexually active early, some later, and again it is a personal, cultural, and situational choice and as long as theew is no compulsion involved, perfectly natural.

But Americans are influenced by the moral perversions of traditonal religion, all of which demean women and their sexuality.  We are demented by their pressuppositions, and this irrationality extends to equating chasity with purity.  So Inherit, with his customary acuity, conflates having sex under the legal age limit, which at one time was 18-statutory rape- with being violentely assaulted, forcible rape.

Polansky is accused of giving this girl champaign.  What, he grabbed her around the neck and forced it down her thorat?  Or did she want some?  Did she want to take qualudes or was she given them without her knowledge?  Did she want to have sex or was she forced?  WE DON’T KNOW!  All we know is that they both want to put the matter that occurred three decades ago behind them.

My daughter just finished high school and she is kind of a straight arrorw.  But she tells me (some) of what happens among the girls there and many progs truthers would be shocked, shocked!  It doesn’t matter as long as the girls don’t get pregnant, and there is no force involved. Sexuality is a great blessing that young people possess and they should enjoy it outside of the purvey of their diapproving elders, who may no longer possess it and pile on the young who do. 

American prudery, fortified by religious irrationality and perversion, here combines with American violence and enjoyment of punishment, to echo the Washintion Post, and the LA and NY Times, and Truthdip, to engage in a legal farce that sinks below the level of what Brad replied to Jen.

Report this
thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, October 1, 2009 at 5:22 am Link to this comment

First, get to the facts. A man in his 40s gets a thirteen year old girl intoxicated so he can have her body for his carnal satisfaction, which the champagne and ‘ludes helped, when he chose to expand her your orifices perhaps?
The famous man, at least in Hollywood environs, plea bargains charges down to guilty to a lesser offence, but then gets nervous cold feet when he thinks that the judge will not agree to the plea bargain, so instead fleas prosecution, where he remained until now, a fugitive outlaw living in luxurious exile.
His industry pals, dismayed that this great man, a great director of great films, has to be pilloried for his 43 year old “youthful indiscretion”.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, October 1, 2009 at 3:24 am Link to this comment

Christian:
The judge WAS going to break the deal and sentence Polanski to a much stiffer sentence.  I see that as a violation of the right against self-incrimination.  If you admit to a crime as part of a plea bargain, the judge cannot then say “Aha! You are a vicious criminal, you admitted it, and I’m going to IGNORE that you admitted in exchange for a set sentence and make MY bones locking you up till you rot!”

It’s not that I give a rat’s @$$ about Roman Polanski: The man is child rapist.  What I care about is that this is part of the erosion of our justice system that led to Bush’s Patriot Act, Military Commissions Act, and absurd revision of the 1978 FISA.  It’s not Polanski that’s the issue: It’s how you and me and FT are all treated by the justice system.  I actually agree with FT and said so on this sole point.  The risk to our justice system and all of us outweighs a 75 year old (though if it turns out he kept on doing it, he should be shot).

The other point is that the VICTIM is being ignored both by FT (to whom the girl, now woman is meaningless) and by the right-wingers who want to lock RP REGARDLESS that it will re-victimize this woman as every graphic detail will luridly be spread across Fox Noise, CNN, HuffPo, and every supermarket tab.  Her family will have to deal with the world coming to her door, the paparazzi, the slime-balls.

And all because a prosecutor wants to make bones.

I have NO sympathy for Roman Polanski. I just don’t see what’s being done as justice, either for the Constitution, or the victim.

Report this

By christian96, September 30, 2009 at 9:44 pm Link to this comment

I support “Inherit the Wind” against the rationale
of “Folktruther.”  I would like to know how Folktruther knows the motive behind the sentencing
by the judge and is it a proven fact the sentencing
was going to be 50 years?  Folktruther uses the
phrase “Americans regard sexual practices as anal,
oral, and unusual sex by celebraties as perversions.”
Which Americans is Folktruther talking about?
All Americans? I ask Folktruther to be more specific
about the comment “All traditional religions inculcate perverted moral values.”  I suggest
Folktruther consider removing “truth” from the name.
Maybe Folkopinioner would be more appropriate.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, September 30, 2009 at 5:48 pm Link to this comment

The reason this and cases like this can occur is because American moral and political values are perverted.  Americans regard sexual pracitices as anal, oral and unusual sex by celebraties as perversions but at the same time are titulated by it, making it good media fodder.  Americans are astonishily punitive about sex, even if the victim is herself harmed by the punishment.
*********************************************

Whether these practices are considered perverse or acceptable, the VAST majority of Americans consider it nobody’s business if practiced by happily consenting adults in private.  As usual, you bring irrelevancy into the matter to attack “the system”.

The ONLY reasonable point you make is the same one I made: the judge broke the deal, and, in doing so, broke the law himself.

**********************************************
No doubt it is because the US is a highly religious society and all traditional religions inculcate perverted moral values.  This case indicates that Americans tend to be as sexually perverted as we are racist and violent.
***********************************************

Totally irrelevant—just a chance to set up your piece de resistance:

************************************************
IF this girl was forcibly raped, which is not clear since her mother tended to put her and her sister in the way of men who could enhance a hollywood career, If force was used, this was indeed a brutal crime.  Which Polanski pled guilty to thirty odd years ago.  the Ameircan ploctriacy re-opening it now to inflict more punishment thirty years later is disgusting.  but not to many Americans, including American Progressives, who think this kind of perverted punishment is a form of justice.
****************************************************

Here you show your moral bankruptcy once again.  The girl was 13. That MAKES it rape.  He drugged her to make her compliant.  That MAKES it forcible rape.

It doesn’t matter what her mother did: Polanksi drugged a 13 year old girl and then had intercourse and oral and anal sex with her while she was drugged.

You can be such a p**z.  If it was YOUR daughter, whom you adore, you’d want the SOB castrated, slowly, and with great pain.  But since it’s somebody else’s child, you play political sophistry games.

Polanski’s ONLY two defenses are that the judge violated the deal and that the VICTIM doesn’t it want it reopened.  But that doesn’t keep FT from defending the @$$h0le rapist.

Report this

By Ray Duray, September 30, 2009 at 1:41 pm Link to this comment

folktruther,

First up, thanks for a marvelous comment. You’ve synthesized a marvelous critique of the American experience.

You wrote in part: “...IF this girl was forcibly raped, which is not clear since her mother tended to put her and her sister in the way of men who could enhance a hollywood career,...”

I’m curious about this aspect of the story. Is this from the trial transcript, or some other reporting that you’ve read? If this is factual, then not only might one chastise the 13 year olds’ mother for neglect, but for something far worse; the creation of an almost inevitable casting couch catastrophe. Which leads to the question, just who was being entrapped here?

Report this

By SusanSunflower, September 30, 2009 at 1:26 pm Link to this comment

Yes, the reason this case has gone unresolved for 30 years is because no one in law enforcement has had the courage to actually profer a resolution. Instead, they have insisted that Polanski place himself in jeopardy before any negotiations would be entertained.

Why?

Politics.

At this point, as far as I can tell, there is no “sane” or “reasonable” punishment that would be sufficient to those on the Polanski war path.

My suspicion is that the Obaman justice department (and quite possibly state department) were unwilling to “just say no” to the “quin es mas macho” request by the LA prosecutor’s office (not wanting to be tarred as shielding a child rapist by NOT giving their okay)—imho, this will be used against them.

So, this travesty continues ... endlessly ...

I’ve read repeatedly that the FBI has conceeded that Leonard Peltier probably wasn’t the shooter in the murder of that FBI agent all those years ago—but the “law” still denies him a new trial as he serves a life sentence for refusing to finger someone else ...

sing it with me, Ain’t that America ....

Report this

By Folktruther, September 30, 2009 at 11:54 am Link to this comment

the case is important precisely because it IS black and white.  Americans are at once gullible and pruitanical so we are easily manipulated by the American power system.  the usual ploy is to accuse someone who has offended the plutocracy, or needs to be removed, for some sexual offense that outrages the sensibilitis of Mr and Ms Suburbia.  Clinton’s sexual piccadillo is a good example, but includes the removal of the NY governor, who was into opposing banks, from his office for sexual escapades.  J. Edgar Hoover routinely amassed data on political figures for blackmail, which was only possible because the American people were so naive, puritanical and punitive.

I orginally assumed that for such an egregious act against Polanski by American power that he must have done something ideologically horrendous, like oppose imperialism or advocate Socialized medicine.  But no, it was a film that exposed the coruption of the LA legal system that led the US power system to ruing the celebration of Poloansiki’s artist career and getting a life award for his work.

My wife, who is a lawyer, said that Polanski’s lawyers recedntly argued a posiition based on LA legal corruption.  Polanski orginally pled guilty on the plea bargain offered him, when the judge then violated it after Polanski had pled guilty.  He was going to sentence Polanksi to a 50 year prison sentence to be a hero to perverted and punitive dingbats and possibly promote a poltiical career.  So Polanski had no choice but to flee, as any sane person would have done.

The NY Times had an editoral stating that bringing this case up after half a lifetime was an act of law and justice, even though it stigmatizes the girl, now a woman with three children, and is strongly against her wishes.  Polanski had previous made financial restittuion to her and apologised.  In addition he was serving time in a rehab center, and his career was threatened.

The reason this and cases like this can occur is because American moral and political values are perverted.  Americans regard sexual pracitices as anal, oral and unusual sex by celebraties as perversions but at the same time are titulated by it, making it good media fodder.  Americans are astonishily punitive about sex, even if the victim is herself harmed by the punishment. 

No doubt it is because the US is a highly religious society and all traditional religions inculcate perverted moral values.  This case indicates that Americans tend to be as sexually perverted as we are racist and violent. 

IF this girl was forcibly raped, which is not clear since her mother tended to put her and her sister in the way of men who could enhance a hollywood career, If force was used, this was indeed a brutal crime.  Which Polanski pled guilty to thirty odd years ago.  the Ameircan ploctriacy re-opening it now to inflict more punishment thirty years later is disgusting.  but not to many Americans, including American Progressives, who think this kind of perverted punishment is a form of justice.

Report this

By tomack, September 30, 2009 at 7:32 am Link to this comment

I have two daughters, so I could just leave it at that. But, unlike one commenter accused, some of us Americans identify and completely understand Gre(a)y when we see it—all is not black and white. If he is a real human being of any substance the penalty at this stage should be self imposed. If not, imposed. Either way, it should probably involve many hours of volunter work with young women who have been abused or raped. Maybe he can put his “genious” to work and create a great film on the subject.

If he doesn’t cooperate with that maybe the “grey” he sees should be institutional.

Report this

By christian96, September 30, 2009 at 5:59 am Link to this comment

I had an encounter with Roman Polanski.  In 1974
I lost a university teaching position for telling
my classes that the oil crisis we were experiencing
was a hoax.  The oil companies also owned coal mines.
I was raised in a coal mining town in West Virginia.
There was a coal contract coming up in December of
1974.  I told my classes the media would use the
oil crisis to make mostly religious coal miners vote
for a contract that would be bad for them.  The
miners didn’t want to vote against a contract just
before Christmas when America was experiencing an
energy crisis.  I hit the nail on the head.  It
happened just like I called it.  The miners passed
a contract which neglected widows. I was without a
job for 14 months.  I tried to get 60 minutes to
cover the story.  I had lunch in New York with someone from the program.  He reused to cover the
neglect.  When I came out of lunch I was walking
around New York and saw a window with Otto Preminger
written on it.  I caught the elevator to his office
and ask the secretary and ask if I could speak with
Mr. Preminger about a movie.  She excused herself,
walked into his office, returned shortly, and said,
“Mr. Preminger will speak with you.”  He had the
longest desk I had ever seen. After I explained the
neglect of widows he started laughing.  When I ask
why he was laughing he said, “The people who pay for
my movies are the same people who are neglecting the
widows!”  Then, I started laughing.  I went to
California to see if I could find help.  One day I
read in the newspaper that Roman Polanski was in
prison at Chino.  Many of the neglected widows in
coal mining towns were Polish.  Roman was Polish.
I drove to the prison at Chino and ask the guard if
I could speak with Mr. Polanski.  He ask if I knew
him and I told him I do.  The guards set me down
behind a glass.  Soon Mr. Polanski entered the room
and sat opposite me.  After I explained how widows
were being neglected in coal mining towns and ask if
he would make a movie about it, he started screaming
to the guards, “Get me out of here! Get me out of here!”  As I was leaving the guard said, “I thought
you said you know him.”  I replied, “I know him.
He doesn’t know me.” That was my encounter with Roman
Polanski.  Not a positive one!

Report this

By hidflect, September 30, 2009 at 4:14 am Link to this comment

It was with some tired sadness I saw BBC World playing the Holocaust angle from start to finish in their report on this child raper. Oy vey! How dare the laws of animals apply to this “special person”?

Report this

By Ray Duray, September 29, 2009 at 8:46 pm Link to this comment

Dear Cynthia In Paris,

You wrote: “It’s such a black-and-white world for Americans.
Pathetic.”

My envy of your locational superiority notwithstanding, I have to say that you’ve got the average American nailed. As they generally prefer, to a cross of their own crude consciousness.

I’ve never quite comprehended how a sado-masochist lunatic like Mel Gibson could make so much money showing a couple of hours of flesh flaying on screen. But that’s basically the same crowd that reports here to sanctimoniously tell us that Roman Polanski needs to take his medicine.

I can hardly believe that America has become the turgid cesspool of celebrity driven scandal that we circle the drains in.

I think the Italians are having a lot more fun with their silly stallion Silvio.

And I understand that the French are enamoured of Carla and Segolene (until recently anyway).

Here in the U.S…. not so much. We want to send a septuagenarian to prison for pointing out the corruption of our creaky system. Alas, I’m getting ready for the rest of the world to just be so god-damned irritated at the sanctimoniousness of Americans that they opt for a timetable to hurl every possible eve-of-destruction weapon at this idiot nation. It would be just desserts. If not exactly what the thumb-sucking Paris Hilton fan considers fair.

Report this

By glider, September 29, 2009 at 3:33 pm Link to this comment

>>Now if Polanski had killed and tortured children he would be president of the united states<<

True, and such lauded “leaders” are doing such killing in the tens of thousands without a blink of an eye.  The My Lai massacre was done by people that are otherwise MSM public “American Heroes” that never paid a price for their hideous crimes.  You can bet the same is happening in our current wars.  Society has an arbitrary value system and childhood is being pushed further out as we value extend education more.  In America murder and atrocities are encouraged as “supporting the troops” by unthinking idiots.  The most upset regarding Polanski are hypocritical Christians who are uncritical of their own “God” who chose a 13 year old virgin to bear their precious Jesus, who by their current definition is the son of a child molester.  Perhaps we should advocate burning all Christian idols as being a promotion of a child molesting “God”.

Report this
Blackspeare's avatar

By Blackspeare, September 29, 2009 at 3:07 pm Link to this comment

Fat Freddy…

I see your point; however, many victimless crimes are negotiated——in the US I believe its called plea bargaining.

Report this
Fat Freddy's avatar

By Fat Freddy, September 29, 2009 at 1:09 pm Link to this comment

Blackspeare
This saves much court time and cost and both parties are generally more satisfied with the outcome and can get on with their lives.

You are probably right, but most of the “crimes” in the US are “victimless” crimes.

Report this
Russian Paul's avatar

By Russian Paul, September 29, 2009 at 11:27 am Link to this comment

Making love is tyoically used against political figures for political purposes in
the US.

Anally raping a drugged 13 year old is “making love?” I agree this might be
political, but Polanski, talented as he is, deserves whatever he gets.

Report this
Blackspeare's avatar

By Blackspeare, September 29, 2009 at 11:23 am Link to this comment

This is a prime example of where Islamic Law is superior to US jurisprudence.  Under the Law of Sharia, when the two aggrieved parties agree to a settlement then any criminal proceedings are nullified.  This saves much court time and cost and both parties are generally more satisfied with the outcome and can get on with their lives.

Report this

By SusanSunflower, September 29, 2009 at 10:28 am Link to this comment

I find the affirmations of the righteous the “government’s case” (and apparently past conduct)disturbing as well as calls for Polanski to be severely punished and lengthily incarcerated—not to mention discounting the victim’s stated desire for this matter to be closed (If she wished for Polanski to be prosecuted, even I would re-consider my feeling that this needs to be RESOLVED.)

The calls for incarceration are troubling to me in two ways—First, the crime of which Polanski was convicted (on a guilty pleas) rarely resulted in much if any jail time, even if jail time COULD be imposed at the judge’s discretion. So, 30 years late, he faces a very different HYSTERICAL environment particularly wrt sex crimes and children.

Second, I have this this enthusiasm for harsh prison sentences a lot recently, among apparently youthful audiences and it alarms me, particularly as Obama preps his “indefinite detention” proposal. We already have indefinite detentions for convicted sex criminals in quite a number of states—it too is an abomination, resulting from an unwillingness to do what’s necessary (and just and humane) to protect society from these people. So even when released, they live in forests until they are evicted, they live under bridges, until they are convicted, the conditions of their release/parole such that they cannot live in regular housing.  Imagine trying to hold a job—if you could find one—while living that way. Much of the world has realized that extensive detention actually instead punishes the family of the criminal and reduces the criminal’s ability to go on to a self-supporting, meaningful, lawful existence. Apparently America’s legal systems really doesn’t care about recitivism (like we don’t REALLY care about our school).

Finally, this believe that society’s need to prosecute trumps the victim’s desires or legal standing really hasn’t been working out very well ... I supported these changes 30 years ago that allowed prosecution against the victim’s wishes. I believe now that I was wrong. I do remember the arguements. The cost/benefit ratio has not turned out as I expected and I think it’s part of a slippery slope. (The alternative of prosecuting on a different charge, when possible, was in use before these laws).

Anyhow, the hysteria suggests that the Law and Order mentality is alive and well, I fear precluding any settlement here that does not include jail time—like community service, charitable work and the like—which might actually benefit society. and, yes, if Polanski had simply skipped out of the country without cooperating as he did, the statute of limitations of the original crime has long passed.

It seems to me Weather Underground and other fugitives have been better treated and with less hysteria.

Report this

By Folktruther, September 29, 2009 at 10:22 am Link to this comment

Why did the US attack Polanski now?  He must have done something to irritate the US power structure or Obama. Making love is tyoically used against political figures for political purposes in the US. since the US media will never reveal it, maybe some commenter knows what Polanski’s political offense is.

Report this

By Mark Warren, September 29, 2009 at 8:44 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It would be good if America was as good at persecuting its greedy and incompetent bankers as it is with a foreigner who committed a sexual crime 30 years ago. But what do you expect from a country that wouldn’t give JR Rowling a presidential medal, because Harry Potter was seen as something that could spread witchcraft. And Muslims are supposed to hate America because of it free and advanced culture?

Report this

By doublestandards/glasshouses, September 29, 2009 at 7:48 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Now if Polanski had killed and tortured children he
would be president of the united states.  His crimes
were vicious but what about the crimes that are
committed in our name every day in some impoverished
part of the world?  We don’t care.  How many children
have died as a direct result of american policy in our
life time?  Would anyone want to make a guess?  In Iraq
alone the number would be at least one million since
the first gulf war.

Report this
Fat Freddy's avatar

By Fat Freddy, September 29, 2009 at 6:48 am Link to this comment

My understanding is that Mr.Polanski’s lawyers had recently worked out a deal to have this matter adjudicated, but Mr. Polanski refused to show up for that court hearing, which generated this bench warrant. Not showing up for court is basically the same as telling a judge to go fuck himself.

Regarding the original case, Mr. Polanski was offered and accepted a “sweetheart deal” by the prosecution, which the Judge was having second thoughts about. When a Judge refuses to accept a plea deal, usually, a defendant can withdrawal his guilty plea and request a trial.

Probation on a list of charges that carries a maximum of life in prison can certainly be considered “getting off easy”. Perhaps, the prosecutor took into consideration the fact that Polanski’s wife and unborn child were viciously murdered at the hands of Manson Family member Susan Atkins.

Report this

By The Mad Loon, September 29, 2009 at 5:41 am Link to this comment

I can’t believe all the people who defend this scumbag. I have to wonder would he have received the plea deal if he wasn’t famous. He should have spent all these years in jail not winning awards.I believe the judge was right to vacate the deal,however having done so needed to vacate the guilty plea also.

In the end though I say we must respect the victims wishes and drop the matter.

Report this

By Cynthia in Paris, September 29, 2009 at 5:27 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I agree with SusanSunflower 100%.
The ‘righteous’ anger and homicidal rage suddenly generated by Polanski’s
ambush in Zurich is more than amazing. Get a grip people. The guy is not some
serial pedophile. WERE YOU THERE ? The girl was, and even she has moved on. He
plea bargained and was left hung out to dry by the so-called American justice
system. He plead guilty under false pretenses. Even Joe Schmo under similar
circumstances would have skipped out.
It’s such a black-and-white world for Americans.
Pathetic.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, September 29, 2009 at 3:27 am Link to this comment

There are three POVs here and all have validity.

1) Polanski is and always has been a scumbag who, at age 43, drugged and repeatedly raped a 13 year old girl, vaginally, orally and anally. He should be in jail for the rest of his life.  It’s irritating how the rich and famous get away with this shit.  A certain renowned conductor at the Met had a complaint about sex with a very young boy hushed up, despite his penchant for putting his of-age “boy toys” in jobs at the Opera House.  It’s BS.

2) OTOH, there had been a plea agreement worked out all those years ago and the judge, throwing his weight around, decided to break it.  Usually, in such deals, the accused has AGREED to accept guilt for certain crimes in return for an agreed-upon punishment.  Having kept his part, the judge didn’t keep his.  Frankly, that’s not justice and Polanski didn’t stick around for it.

3) Then there’s the girl, now a woman, age 45, married with 3 children.  She sees the prosecutors in the USA grandstanding and making HER a victim yet again, bringing up humiliating graphic evidence of an event she has put behind her.  She, the victim, has requested that this case be dropped to protect HER and HER family.  Justice isn’t about vindictiveness, or about making a prosecutor’s bones. It’s about protecting the innocent from crime.  This woman is not being protected—she is being victimized again just to advance an ambitious prosecutor’s career.

I have no sympathy for Polanski. But I do have respect for the system that was violated and for the victim who wishes to keep the past as the past.

Report this

By SusanSunflower, September 28, 2009 at 6:52 pm Link to this comment

coming after the “big surprise, eh?” that Gitmo prolly won’t be closing as promised ... along with FISA and assorted other disappointments ... hope/change on the international front just took a hit ...

Polanski pled guilty and cooperated completely for a busy year of cooperating and his accrued under detention while being “evaluated” (irrc) was considerably greater than that handed out as a prison sentence—in other words—He did what he was asked to do and over that year fulfilled the “agreement” or “understanding” fashioned by his lawyers and the judge.

As it was then, so it is now, as far as I can tell, ambitious politician attempting to use Mr. Polanski (and victim) for their own gain.

The internet is awash with outrage, pitchfork and statements about how much Mr. Polanski NEEDS, DESERVES, MUST pay his debt to society for his CRIME ...

If only any of this sort of outrage somehow ensures or enhanced the safety of any real child ... This sort of outrange, imho, is why some agreement was not reached in the last 30 years despite repeated determined efforts by Polanski and lawyers to reach an legal resolution.

Pathetic.  At least it keeps our mind off the public option, Gitmo/Bagram and Zazi.

Report this
CJ's avatar

By CJ, September 28, 2009 at 6:09 pm Link to this comment

Time for Polanski to pay the price he’s spent 30 years avoiding paying while thousands and thousands of boys, and even men sometimes, who never had the option of hopping a plane for Paris did and are doing time as sex offenders. In Polanski’s case, time should be tacked on for dodging the sentence handed down at the time.

What goes even for a 19-year-old boy who messes with a 14-year-old girl the kid actually cares for certainly must go for a 43-year-old SOB of a still-kid who messed with a 13-year-old girl for whom he otherwise seems not to have had any further use.

I met a lovely, very bright, very mature 14-year-old girl (actually woman despite her age) when I was 21. I knew better for crissake, no matter my feelings or hers.

As for angry Poland, France and film buffs, I’m sure the prison will allow visitation.

Report this
Newsletter

sign up to get updates


 
 
Right 1, Site wide - BlogAds Premium
 
Right 2, Site wide - Blogads
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 
 
 
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 

A Progressive Journal of News and Opinion   Publisher, Zuade Kaufman   Editor, Robert Scheer
© 2014 Truthdig, LLC. All rights reserved.