“Everybody Knew”/”Nobody Knew”

 

You’ve read the conventional wisdom, and it usually has some truth in it. “Until December 7, 1941, nobody knew that America would get dragged into World War II.” “The A-bombing of Nagasaki was cruel and unnecessary—everybody knew the Japanese were ready to surrender after Hiroshima.” “On October 4, 1957, the Soviets stunned the world. Nobody knew they were on the brink of launching the Earth’s first artificial moon.”

You’ve read the confident cynics, too. “Everybody knew John F. Kennedy was having extramarital affairs.” “Everyone knew the reason Nixon ‘killed’ Apollo was that he was jealous of JFK’s role in starting it.” And of course, “Everybody in Hollywood knew about Harvey Weinstein. They had to know.”

Let me address the most trivial one first because I saw the truth up close: Weinstein’s Miramax was a (very) small New York company that bought and distributed rock concert films. That’s how most people first met Harvey and his brother Bob, who named their company after their parents, Miriam and Max. In the Eighties it branched out, cheaply buying the US rights to foreign films that, then and now, had little chance of entering the US market. They shrewdly got maximum publicity at minimum expense, never taking a genuinely controversial stand, and parlayed that marketing ability into making lots of money and getting acquired by the Walt Disney Company. Those are the basic facts.

Harvey, arrogant and defensive to begin with, became a detested tyrant early on. Everyone who worked with him admitted his skill and freely admitted they hated him. We encountered him dozens of times, at AFI screenings in LA., and at festivals like Cannes and Sundance. At the 2002 Oscars, Robin Williams joked, “I see we have a nominee this year called ‘Monsters, Inc’, a documentary about the Weinstein brothers,” and the audience roared. He was a bully, physically loathsome and hated throughout the industry. I knew dozens of Miramax people who were fired by him or quit. A number were in protracted lawsuits against him. And yet, none of them—not one, man or woman—told the stories we heard in 2017, even privately. Because we didn’t know.

When the stories came out, there was a horrifying glee all over town that somebody brought him down, but we were as shocked as anyone else how it happened. Why didn’t we know? Basically, because we weren’t actresses, especially European ones. Weinstein was right to make foreign film festivals his happy hunting ground. He got sloppy and disgusting—everything about him is—and he got caught.

Roll back the clock. In 1940 magazine articles and subsequent history books, it was clear that the European war wasn’t going to be as brief as initially hoped. But it was also clear that the US was staying neutral, not getting dragged in like we were in 1917. We learned our lesson with WWI. This time we were going to let the dictators fight this one out. In his re-election campaign, FDR swore up and down that we were staying out of it. The news writers were unanimous because it was obvious what Americans wanted.

Yet the same writers, ten years later, were just as firm in insisting that once FDR won an unprecedented third term, of course we knew we were in it up to our necks. The German Navy was already attacking US-UK shipping in 1941. Well before Pearl Harbor, the Atlantic pact and other ‘foreign entanglements’ made America’s neutrality in name only, and everyone knew it. Auto plants started converting for war. Few expected Japan to strike the first blow against us, but few expected us to skate through 1942 at peace. What happened to convert “everyone knows we’re staying out” to “everyone knows we’re getting in”? It’s reasonable to deduce that the pro-FDR press did its best to help him out, tacitly believing that the 1940 electorate needed to be lied to.

How about the best-kept secret of World War II, the atomic bomb? It was certainly a shock to the world in August 1945. But weirdly, it seems to fall somewhere in the “everyone knew/nobody knew” spectrum. When Alfred Hitchcock was planning the Ingrid Bergman-Cary Grant movie, Notorious, he made inquiries whether uranium could be used as a weapon. He was told no, told to take it out of the script, and there was a (probably exaggerated) plan to place Hitch under surveillance. My father-in-law, who had some scientific knowledge, used to recount a story about meeting a former classmate from City College during the war, who was working for an Eastman chemical plant in Tennessee. After hearing about what few fragments his friend knew, he said casually, “Sounds like you’re making an atomic bomb down there.” “The Nazi radio has been throwing out hints that Germany has ready an explosive more devastating than anything yet dreamed of (there was talk a while back about an “atom-smashing” element capable of destroying whole cities).—from Danton Walker‘s syndicated column carried in the Philadelphia Inquirer, September 11, 1944.

But the king of all Manhattan Project leaks happened on March 13, 1944, in the pages of the Cleveland Press. Weary homeward commuters read the headline, “Forbidden City—Uncle Sam’s Mystery Town Directed by ‘2nd Einstein’” In several jaw-dropping paragraphs, they learned about Los Alamos, a giant top secret Army installation doing secret work involving explosions and death rays, directed by Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer, already listed before the war in Who’s Who as one of America’s top nuclear scientists. It would not have taken a Nazi version of Sherlock Holmes to figure out what Oppenheimer and the Army were doing. There were details that were off, and conjecture that proved wrong, but by WWII standards, this was a breathtaking breach of security.

How did it happen? There was a fearsome mechanism to deal with the press and press censorship, which was mostly voluntary anyway. But the reporter, John Raper, didn’t apply for credentials, wasn’t doing an assigned story, and didn’t approach the front gate. He was on vacation in New Mexico and fell into talking with excessively loose-lipped plant workers having a drink after work. He wrote up his story in total ignorance of what it meant, and the Cleveland Press staff that vetted it for wartime censorship requirements were too ill-informed to realize that physicists had become a key national strategic asset. Los Alamos was stunned at the leak and managed to quash the routine circulation of the story on the Associated Press wire.

Even after the war ended, when Life Magazine did a now-it-can-be-told story about the Manhattan Project, one of the artist illustrations of the story shows a ball-like bomb on top of the Trinity tower. Accurate—far too accurate for General Groves, because all the stories approved for publication described the already obsolete Hiroshima bomb’s design, basically a gun that fired a U235 ‘bullet’ into a U235 target at the end of a gun barrel. But Trinity, the prototype of the Nagasaki bomb and nearly all the nuclear weapons to follow, was triggered by implosion, The simple fact that the bomb was spherical, trivial as it sounds now, was such an important clue to the way it worked that implosion would continue to be the bomb project’s biggest secret for another half-dozen years or so. Yet by August 1945, somehow someone knew the right shape, indicating that somebody talked, probably an eager GI workman who had no idea he was betraying a secret. The Army was never able to find out who. The Russians, like the Germans in the 1944 Cleveland case, didn’t even notice the article. Then again, the Russians already had a great deal of spy information; they didn’t need Life Magazine.

I’ve mentioned other cases in the “Everybody knew”/”Nobody Knew” spectrum. Maybe we’ll do more. Maybe you have some, too.

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There are 60 comments.

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  1. Arahant Member

    Gary McVey: I’ve mentioned other cases in the “Everybody knew”/”Nobody Knew” spectrum. Maybe we’ll do more. Maybe you have some, too.

    There were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Everyone knew it. Saddam had used them on his own people. Some went out into Syria in a truck convoy in the lead-up to the Iraq War. The New York Times reported on it at the time. They were later used by Syria and some also had made their way to Libya and were part of what Qaddafi turned over. The New York Times reported on it at the time. There were also some found in Iraq during the war, although not nearly as many as was hoped for. The New York Times reported on it at the time. All the while, The New York Times was shouting “Bush lied and people died” in its editorial section. 

    • #1
    • August 15, 2019, at 11:33 PM PDT
    • 35 likes
  2. Hank Rhody, on the blockchain Contributor

    • #2
    • August 15, 2019, at 11:40 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  3. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey Post author

    Excellent example! I’m not in the least surprised that Arahant came up with it!

    • #3
    • August 15, 2019, at 11:40 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  4. Arahant Member

    Gary McVey (View Comment):

    Excellent example! I’m not in the least surprised that Arahant came up with it!

    I studied it all pretty closely back then.

    • #4
    • August 15, 2019, at 11:42 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  5. Judge Mental Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Gary McVey (View Comment):

    Excellent example! I’m not in the least surprised that Arahant came up with it!

    I studied it all pretty closely back then.

    Right. Three hundred tractor trailers to Syria. Sixty-seven flights from Iraq to Libya for a 747 cargo conversion, 400,000 lbs per trip.

    • #5
    • August 15, 2019, at 11:56 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  6. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey Post author

    Other strange twists of true history: In late 1943, there was a rumor in the midwest that Hitler was going to drop radioactive dust on Chicago. This is similar to, maybe inspired by a prewar Robert Heinlein short story, “Solution: Unsatisfactory”, about a strategic atomic program that wasn’t a bomb. 

    The only part of the Manhattan Project that the Germans found out about was a proposal, ten years early, to power submarines with the decay heat of uranium. They never found out about Los Alamos, and let me tip my hat to the tens, maybe hundreds of thousands of German-Americans who read the Press on March 13, 1944 and never even thought of dropping a dime on it, whatever that would have entailed; would that my own Irish had always acted as consistently in the nation’s interest. 

    • #6
    • August 16, 2019, at 1:49 AM PDT
    • 12 likes
  7. thelonious Member

    This sparked my shallow mind of all the “confirmed bachelors” of the 1970’s. Paul Lynne, Charles Nelson-Riley and Liberace. We knew, yet we didn’t know.

    • #7
    • August 16, 2019, at 3:31 AM PDT
    • 17 likes
  8. Stina Member

    Some of this “no one knew/everybody knew” stuff is naivete vs jaded/cynical.

    I’m willing to afford someone benefit of doubt, but seriously being shocked by any of it reveals a kind of childish mindset.

    It isn’t that everyone knew JFK was having affairs. It’s that it was completely unsurprising to most people to find out he was.

    It wasn’t that pearl harbor was not predictable to those with the information, but that most people were without that information.

    • #8
    • August 16, 2019, at 4:29 AM PDT
    • 8 likes
  9. thelonious Member

    Stina (View Comment):

    Some of this “no one knew/everybody knew” stuff is naivete vs jaded/cynical.

    I’m willing to afford someone benefit of doubt, but seriously being shocked by any of it reveals a kind of childish mindset.

    It isn’t that everyone knew JFK was having affairs. It’s that it was completely unsurprising to most people to find out he was.

    It wasn’t that pearl harbor was not predictable to those with the information, but that most people were without that information.

    Tensions were high and I think most thought war with Japan was more than likely. The Pearl Harbor attack was almost unimaginable. Pearl Harbor was hundreds of miles away from the Japanese fleet and not easily within striking distance.

    • #9
    • August 16, 2019, at 4:50 AM PDT
    • 6 likes
  10. Suspira Member

    Stina (View Comment):

    Some of this “no one knew/everybody knew” stuff is naivete vs jaded/cynical.

    I’m willing to afford someone benefit of doubt, but seriously being shocked by any of it reveals a kind of childish mindset.

    It isn’t that everyone knew JFK was having affairs. It’s that it was completely unsurprising to most people to find out he was.

    It wasn’t that pearl harbor was not predictable to those with the information, but that most people were without that information.

    I’m always right up against the nobody-knew end of the spectrum. I’m always surprised. I guess I have a childish mindset. I blame my parents. They were such good people, I was left with the indelible impression that honesty and integrity are the norm.

    • #10
    • August 16, 2019, at 4:53 AM PDT
    • 10 likes
  11. Stina Member

    Suspira (View Comment):

    Stina (View Comment):

    Some of this “no one knew/everybody knew” stuff is naivete vs jaded/cynical.

    I’m willing to afford someone benefit of doubt, but seriously being shocked by any of it reveals a kind of childish mindset.

    It isn’t that everyone knew JFK was having affairs. It’s that it was completely unsurprising to most people to find out he was.

    It wasn’t that pearl harbor was not predictable to those with the information, but that most people were without that information.

    I’m always right up against the nobody-knew end of the spectrum. I’m always surprised. I guess I have a childish mindset. I blame my parents. They were such good people, I was left with the indelible impression that honesty and integrity are the norm.

    I had good parents, too. They sheltered me from this for a long time.

    But I read the Bible. And there’s enough depravity in God’s chosen people to open eyes.

    Being aware of depravity isn’t about being sheltered or not. Do you believe the heart is desperately wicked or not? If you do, than it shouldn’t be a surprise that people you don’t know can act in desperately wicked ways.

    Including our government, including charity chairmen, business execs, rich people, poor people, public celebrities or private recluses, law enforcement of judges. No one is immune to depravity.

    • #11
    • August 16, 2019, at 5:35 AM PDT
    • 8 likes
  12. Hang On Member

    Gary McVey: The Russians, like the Germans in the 1944 Cleveland case, didn’t even notice the article. Then again, the Russians already had a great deal of spy information; they didn’t need Life Magazine.

    The Russians did have a lot of spy information. But evidently, it wasn’t passed on to the Soviet teams who were busy with their own nuclear project. Stalin didn’t trust his spies and he didn’t trust his scientists. The scientists’ initial design was different (piles). The Soviets also knew something was up with the British who stopped publishing and sent all non-British scientists away from the Cavendish Labs in ’37 or ’38. Stalin and the Bomb: The Soviet Union and Atomic Energy, 1939-1956

    • #12
    • August 16, 2019, at 5:50 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  13. Hang On Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    There were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Everyone knew it. Saddam had used them on his own people. Some went out into Syria in a truck convoy in the lead-up to the Iraq War. The New York Times reported on it at the time. They were later used by Syria and some also had made their way to Libya and were part of what Qaddafi turned over. The New York Times reported on it at the time. There were also some found in Iraq during the war, although not nearly as many as was hoped for. The New York Times reported on it at the time. All the while, The New York Times was shouting “Bush lied and people died” in its editorial section. 

    Reasons to question this are: the half-life of the compounds are usually short. It’s very volatile.

    What would be believable is that the means of producing it were transferred. Much of the technology is dual purpose as well.

    The part that makes it difficult to believe that Iraqi Baathists would transfer it to Syrian Baathists is that the two hated each other and were deadly enemies. Not saying it isn’t possible, but would like to see the documents for the transfer and negotiations.

    • #13
    • August 16, 2019, at 5:57 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  14. Arahant Member

    Hang On (View Comment):
    Not saying it isn’t possible, but would like to see the documents for the transfer and negotiations.

    All that I know is what the New York Times reported at the time.

    • #14
    • August 16, 2019, at 6:06 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  15. Hang On Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Hang On (View Comment):
    Not saying it isn’t possible, but would like to see the documents for the transfer and negotiations.

    All that I know is what the New York Times reported at the time.

    Fair enough.

    • #15
    • August 16, 2019, at 6:22 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  16. Bartholomew Xerxes Ogilvie, Jr. Coolidge

    The case of the atomic bomb is a particularly interesting one, because the possibility of such a device was an obvious implication of the science. Anyone who had been following (and understood) nuclear physics through the years that preceded the war understood this. The Manhattan Project was primarily an engineering project, because the basic science was mostly already understood.

    What made it even more obvious was the fact that, once the Manhattan Project was under way, the publication of American scientific papers in the field abruptly stopped. It made sense not to share what we were learning with enemies (current or potential), but the sudden silence made it pretty clear that something was going on in the U.S., and it had to do with nuclear physics. Given the state of the world at the time, it wasn’t hard to guess what it was.

    • #16
    • August 16, 2019, at 6:27 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  17. DrewInWisconsin, Thought Leader Member

    “Everybody Knew”/”Nobody Knew” seems to be the position of someone who wants to be in the know. You don’t want to be one of the ignorant masses, do you? You don’t want to have been fooled. You’re not a dupe. You’re smart, not like everybody says, like dumb. You’re smart and you want respect! So even if you didn’t know, you adopt the position of “everybody knew” because it places you on the side of the smart, knowledgeable ones.

    “Everybody knew” is also a method by which one can dismiss a scandalous revelation as no big deal (sometimes referred to as “Bensmithing”). “What? Everyone knew that Hillary’s e-mails were being sent to the Chinese, but the FBI concluded that there was no crime there. Let’s move on to the real scandal . . . TRUMP’S COLLUSION WITH RUSSIA!”

    And as we have all seen, “everybody knows” is also a way by which a lying media quickly establishes a narrative so that they can move on to the real work of destroying anyone to the right of Hillary. “Everybody knows that Trump is a racist.” “Everybody knows that anyone who voted for him is a white supremacist.” Establish the lies and slander quickly and pass them off as something that doesn’t really need verification, because it’s something “everyone knows.” Then after that “fact” becomes well-established, move on to “We’ll just need to take all their guns away” or something worse.

    • #17
    • August 16, 2019, at 6:30 AM PDT
    • 16 likes
  18. Yehoshua Ben-Eliyahu Coolidge

    Everyone knows that leftist parties (today’s Democrats) down through history have demonized other groups to achieve power: Communist Russia, Communist China, Nazi Germany. Today it is happening again with American leftists: this time it is “white supremacists” (Republicans) who are being demonized and, if the likes of Liz Warren — if not next year, then in the course of time — ever become president, G-d help us. She could easily set up re-education camps surrounded by barbed wire for the likes of you and me. “Everybody knows” that leftists harbor totalitarian ambitions that they would gleefully pursue once in power. Let’s hope people wake up before it’s too late. And, need I say it, Jews are once again being demonized; over half of the Democrat senators voted against an anti-BDS bill in February of this year and the House could not bring itself to condemn anti-Semitism outright after Omar’s unvarnished verbal attacks against Jews.

    • #18
    • August 16, 2019, at 6:55 AM PDT
    • 14 likes
  19. SkipSul Moderator

    The Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal that first broke in 2002, and has continued to keep breaking.

    Rod Dreher here talks at length about it (he was one of those who helped break it), and how there were things everyone in journalist circles knew, but would deny.

    Sometimes the everyone knew / nobody knew paradox is very very complicated.

    https://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/its-not-paranoia-if-its-true-conspiracies-epstein-inner-ring/

    • #19
    • August 16, 2019, at 6:59 AM PDT
    • 10 likes
  20. Hang On Member

    And then there is the Holocaust. 

    • #20
    • August 16, 2019, at 7:22 AM PDT
    • 13 likes
  21. Jim McConnell Member

    Hang On (View Comment):
    The part that makes it difficult to believe that Iraqi Baathists would transfer it to Syrian Baathists is that the two hated each other and were deadly enemies. Not saying it isn’t possible, but would like to see the documents for the transfer and negotiations.

    Would you believe that Saddam would transfer his fighter jets to his hated enemy, Iran, to prevent them being destroyed by the U.S.? He did.

    • #21
    • August 16, 2019, at 8:28 AM PDT
    • 6 likes
  22. Hartmann von Aue Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Gary McVey (View Comment):

    Excellent example! I’m not in the least surprised that Arahant came up with it!

    I studied it all pretty closely back then.

    I had some friends in the IAEA from the late 90s to the early 00s who stated, based on their work as part of the UN team in Iraq, that they were certain Saddam Hussein was covertly working on nuclear weapons based on both the kinds of equipment his atomic energy program (for peaceful purposes only..hahaha) was buying and on the “unexpected delays” they encountered in their work attempting to verify Iraq’s compliance with sanctions. One such event was the team being denied entry into a particular lab and finally being able to bullmoose their way in just in time to see Iraqi personnel rushing equipment out of the room on rolling carts, said personnel then locking the doors behind them right in the face of the UN team. They told their superior, one Hans Blix, about the incident and he …steadfastly ignored it. They regularly referred to him as a clown and dupe, which he was. 

    • #22
    • August 16, 2019, at 8:30 AM PDT
    • 14 likes
  23. GrannyDude Member

    Hang On (View Comment):

    And then there is the Holocaust.

    Yes. That’s an interesting one, isn’t it? “Everyone knew,” inside Germany—indeed, there were periods in which the Nazi government more or less advertised the concentration camps, and those who returned from these (in the early days, when return was more common) were so visibly crushed that whole neighborhoods had to know.

    Still: Everyone didn’t know. Enough people knew enough. The existence of resistance groups within Germany —the White Rose being an obvious example—means that necessary and sufficient knowledge was possible and therefore action too.

    Peter Fritzsche has written about the condition(s) of knowing/not knowing/don’t want to know in the Third Reich. His books are those of a historian trying to get at what is ultimately a question of responsibility.

    So here’s another example: Abortion.

    As some of you will know, I was pro-choice. “Ambivalently,” as I’d put it, even then, but staunchly. Here is what I would say: “The vast majority of abortions are performed in the first trimester.” I was, of course, right. Only 1-2 percent are 2nd and 3rd trimester abortions.

    A very simple math problem (simple even for me, a non-math type) was all that stood between me and knowing something that would’ve made my staunch position…uncomfortable.

    That, and an equally simple problem of basic bio-mechanics (simple, that is, especially for a woman who’d had four children): In those mere 10-20,000 later term abortions performed every year in America, how does the doctor get the baby out?

    • #23
    • August 16, 2019, at 9:50 AM PDT
    • 12 likes
  24. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey Post author

    An in-between case? Bill Cosby. People in TV knew for decades that he “fooled around”, despite being married. As years went by, these rumors leaked to the public, but “Dr. Heathcliff Huxtable” still retained a lot of goodwill; nobody was too inclined to push further. 

    Cosby’s identification with stricter parenting didn’t really make him a target, but it drained the residual reluctance of the press to pester Black celebrities. (Cosby was never, in fact, a conservative, although he was often defended by conservatives). Tabloids picked up on the big financial settlements that were buying silence, and stuff that was barely below the surface emerged all at once. Suddenly “everybody knew”, except it wasn’t so sudden. 

    • #24
    • August 16, 2019, at 11:13 AM PDT
    • 9 likes
  25. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey Post author

    Know who’s gone full woke, maximum #metoo, all but calling for Hollywood reparations and affirmative action for actresses? Vanity Fair magazine, flagship of Conde Nast publishing, the snobbiest of the snobs. 

    Know who spent 25 years in bed with Harvey Weinstein? Vanity Fair magazine. 

    • #25
    • August 16, 2019, at 11:16 AM PDT
    • 10 likes
  26. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey Post author

    DrewInWisconsin, Thought Leader (View Comment):

    “Everybody Knew”/”Nobody Knew” seems to be the position of someone who wants to be in the know. You don’t want to be one of the ignorant masses, do you? You don’t want to have been fooled. You’re not a dupe. You’re smart, not like everybody says, like dumb. You’re smart and you want respect! So even if you didn’t know, you adopt the position of “everybody knew” because it places you on the side of the smart, knowledgeable ones.

    Retrospect yields a lot of “false positives” because of that. It would be much easier for me, and more self-flattering, to say “Of course I knew about Weinstein”. But I didn’t. It makes it tricky trying to judge, for example, the JFK case. If you believe the number of aged journalists who claim they knew (not guessed at) his infidelities, it’s a miracle he ever got elected. I’d bet money that 99.99% “knew” only after some facts emerged in the mid-Seventies, but that’s not what they say today. 

    • #26
    • August 16, 2019, at 11:24 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  27. SkipSul Moderator

    Gary McVey (View Comment):

    DrewInWisconsin, Thought Leader (View Comment):

    “Everybody Knew”/”Nobody Knew” seems to be the position of someone who wants to be in the know. You don’t want to be one of the ignorant masses, do you? You don’t want to have been fooled. You’re not a dupe. You’re smart, not like everybody says, like dumb. You’re smart and you want respect! So even if you didn’t know, you adopt the position of “everybody knew” because it places you on the side of the smart, knowledgeable ones.

    Retrospect yields a lot of “false positives” because of that. It would be much easier for me, and more self-flattering, to say “Of course I knew about Weinstein”. But I didn’t. It makes it tricky trying to judge, for example, the JFK case. If you believe the number of aged journalists who claim they knew (not guessed at) his infidelities, it’s a miracle he ever got elected. I’d bet money that 99.99% “knew” only after some facts emerged in the mid-Seventies, but that’s not what they say today.

    Or they knew in the journalist sense of “we saw or heard rumors and weird stuff, but nothing that added up enough to say with certainty and avoid a lawsuit or the FBI.”

    • #27
    • August 16, 2019, at 11:27 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  28. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey Post author

    And there are the flat-out mistakes. Good looking actors are frequent targets of gay rumors, and sometimes, of course, they’re true. But not always. Christopher Reeve wasn’t gay. Neither was Burt Reynolds, another perennial target. Neither is Tom Selleck, who may have been targeted because of his doing TV ads for National Review. That’s why you can’t always believe the rumors. 

    • #28
    • August 16, 2019, at 11:33 AM PDT
    • 9 likes
  29. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey Post author

    SkipSul (View Comment):

    The Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal that first broke in 2002, and has continued to keep breaking.

    Rod Dreher here talks at length about it (he was one of those who helped break it), and how there were things everyone in journalist circles knew, but would deny.

    Sometimes the everyone knew / nobody knew paradox is very very complicated.

    https://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/its-not-paranoia-if-its-true-conspiracies-epstein-inner-ring/

    And “everyone knows” the scandal was caused by hypocritical, aged religious fanatics, red-faced defenders of the faith, Catholic versions of the mob in “The Crucible”. Except it wasn’t; most Catholics of a certain age were not surprised that the problem reached its awful peak with the Father Feelgoods of the Seventies, the kind of priest that era approved of, with guitars, sandals, and love beads in place of rosaries. But that doesn’t fit a convenient anti-religious narrative. 

    • #29
    • August 16, 2019, at 11:39 AM PDT
    • 8 likes
  30. SkipSul Moderator

    I think some of this is (and forgive the doubly mixed metaphor) the blind men describing the elephant in the room.

    By this I mean in a lot of these situations most people are like the blind men trying to describe an elephant by touch – none can see what they have, and they end up squabbling with each other over what they sense and what it means, while others, unable to process the weirdness of what they sense, or perhaps being warned off, choose to ignore it entirely.

    • #30
    • August 16, 2019, at 11:41 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
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