From Juanita Broaddrick to Tara Reade: In Forty Years Has Nothing Changed at All?

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Yves here. I am old enough to have read the Wall Street Journal op-ed where Juanita Broaddrick gave a detailed account of Bill Clinton’s rape in the print edition. It was so credibly detailed, and Broaddrick had contemporaneous witnesses, that I was convinced it would spur lots of follow-on coverage. Boy, was I wrong.

BTW, this account skips over a detail I remember from the Broaddrick’s Wall Street Journal account (which I not only read several times, but discussed with quite a few friends ): Clinton grabbed, her, spun her to face him, pulled her close, and bit her lip to prevent her from pulling away as he pushed her on the bed. This is the sort of move that no woman would think to make up, and also shows how practiced Clinton was at sexual abuse. The op-ed, under Broaddrick’s name, is peculiarly not findable in an internet search (the search function on the WSJ site itself goes back only four years). That version contained the detail that Clinton lay on top of her for close to 20 minutes, and came a second time, but it was a shudder, more the sexual version of an afterthought.

One line victim-trashers often take is “Why didn’t she scream? Why didn’t she fight him off?” If you listen to the Tara Reade account, it was clear it happened very quickly and Biden backed off when he realized Reade was uncooperative. With Broaddrick, she was in a hotel room, with no one in earshot (and how well can you holler if some has your lip between his teeth?), with Clinton having hurt her to get his way and clearly capable of doing so again. And they were both their bosses, figures they regarded with esteem and probably fear.

Another big issue is women get extraordinarily strong cultural programming against using violence. That usually makes a lot of sense; men generally have a size and strength advantage over women and can usually beat the shit out of them in a fight. But now that I am in the room trying to work while crime shows are on (usually with the sound off), I too often see women, even supposed cop women, acting like fragile flowers when a gun or knife is pulled on them (the convention is only a tiny number of ninja fighter women, usually but not always Asian but always trim and capable of wearing a catsuit, get to be physically aggressive). There have been too many scenes I’ve witnessed where the law enforcement woman was not physically restrained (not pinned, hands free), where the attacker was at arm’s length, and in the cases with a gun, trigger not cocked. They are clearly about to be killed but instead of doing something sensible, like lunging to gouge out the perp’s eyes, they go all weep-y and plead-y, which per convention buys them enough time for their rescuers to come and save them.

By Thomas Neuburger. Originally published at DownWithTyranny!

Juanita Broaddrick, right, with residents of her Arkansas retirement home and Bill Clinton in April 1978, the same month she alleges that Clinton assaulted her (source)

Hid among the grease and grime of the Tara Reade rape discussion — “Should we believe her? To what extent? Would Biden really do such a thing? But what if a public discussion leads to Trump’s reelection?” — lies the shadow of another rape accusation.

Undiscussed, rarely brought up, as carefully hid or moreso by the Democratic Party–supporting media as the Tara Reade story was, stands the rape charge by Juanita Broaddrick against 32-year-old Arkansas Attorney General Bill Clinton, a rape said to have occurred in 1978.

The facts are these (source: a nicely researched 2017 piece by Dylan Mathews at Vox). First, this is what Broaddrick says happened:

In 1978, Broaddrick was volunteering for Clinton’s gubernatorial campaign, and claims she met him when he visited his campaign office in her home town of Van Buren, Arkansas, that April. She says he then invited her to visit his office in Little Rock, which Broaddrick agreed to do a week later, when she was in the state Capitol anyway for a conference of nursing home administrators. Once she was at a hotel in Little Rock, she claims Clinton told her that he wasn’t going to the campaign headquarters and offered to meet her in her hotel lobby coffee shop instead. Once he arrived, she says he called her room and suggested that they have coffee there, since the lobby had too many reporters. Broaddrick says she agreed.

Then according to a 1999 Washington Post story:

As she tells the story, they spent only a few minutes chatting by the window — Clinton pointed to an old jail he wanted to renovate if he became governor — before he began kissing her. She resisted his advances, she said, but soon he pulled her back onto the bed and forcibly had sex with her. She said she did not scream because everything happened so quickly. Her upper lip was bruised and swollen after the encounter because, she said, he had grabbed onto it with his mouth.

“The last thing he said to me was, ‘You better get some ice for that.’ And he put on his sunglasses and walked out the door,” she recalled.

Broaddrick’s story has no third-party witness, but quite a lot of contemporaneous corroboration:

• The director at the nursing home where Broaddrick worked told reporters “that she entered the hotel room shortly after the assault allegedly took place, and ‘found Mrs. Broaddrick crying and in ‘a state of shock.’ Her upper lip was puffed out and blue, and appeared to have been hit.’ Kelsey elaborated to the New York Times, “She told me he forced himself on her, forced her to have intercourse.”

• In 1999, three of Broaddrick’s friends told NBC News on camera that Broaddrick told them at the time that Bill Clinton had raped her.

• In addition, David Broaddrick “with whom Broaddrick was having an affair … also NBC that Broaddrick’s top lip was black after the alleged incident, and that she told him, ‘that she had been raped by Bill Clinton.'”

The Other Side

Opposed to this evidence lie the usual adversarial questions about why Broaddrick delayed so long to say something, why she chose the time she did to come forward, and what her underlying motives might have been. Bill Clinton was being impeached for the Monica Lewinski affair — pilloried, really, by Ken Starr’s special prosecutor’s office — when Broaddrick’s story was leaked to the public.

The response to this has been that Broaddrick, according to Vox, “had been courted to come forward about the allegations by Clinton enemies for years,” and refused many pleas that she speak out.

“She only came forward after she was interviewed by Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr’s office and her allegation leaked. Broaddrick told the [Wall Street] Journal [here] that NBC News reporter Lisa Myers pursued her for nearly a year before she agreed to an interview, and that she came forward because she wanted to rebut false rumors circulating after her statements to prosecutors (like that David Broaddrick had accepted hush money from the Clintons in exchange for silence).”

In short, if Vox’s account is correct, Broaddrick was almost literally the most reluctant of reluctant witnesses at a time when Bill Clinton was beset on all sides with eager ones.

Did Hillary Clinton Weigh In?

It’s an ugly story, both in the context in which it occurred — the dubiously moral, hypocritical Republican Party assaulting a presidency it never considered legitimate using charges they themselves were guilty of at the time — and in the Broaddrick story itself.

And the ugliness continued, according to Broaddrick, shortly after the event. In a 1999 interview she gave to the Drudge Report and quoted by Vox, Broaddrick said that “mere weeks after the alleged [1978] assault, Hillary Clinton had tried to thank her for her silence on the matter at a political rally.” Broaddrick:

She came directly to me as soon as she hit the door. I had been there only a few minutes, I only wanted to make an appearance and leave. She caught me and took my hand and said ‘I am so happy to meet you. I want you to know that we appreciate everything you do for Bill.’

Here her husband had just done this to me, and she was coming up to thank me? It was scary…I started to turn away and she held onto my hand and reiterated her phrase — looking less friendly and repeated her statement—-‘Everything you do for Bill’. I said nothing. She wasn’t letting me get away until she made her point. She talked low, the smile faded on the second thank you. I just released her hand from mine and left the gathering.

No one knows for sure what happened between Broaddrick and Bill Clinton in the hotel room save Broaddrick and Clinton himself, just as no one but Broaddrick and Hillary Clinton knows for sure what passed between them at the rally just a few weeks later — and only Clinton herself knows for sure what she meant to convey, regardless of how Broaddrick took it.

But if Christine Blasey Ford is credible (in my opinion, eminently so), then Tara Reade is credible at the very least — and so is Juanita Broaddrick.

The #MeToo Era: The Briefest of Lights in 40 Years of Darkness

Why bring this up? Because the alleged Broaddrick rape occurred in 1978 — and here we are, in 2020, with many of the same actors, all with the same loyalties, using much the same tactics to silence and sidestep the consequences of almost the same (alleged) crime, the forceable rape of a low-level female political associate by a high-level male with a history of intruding on women.

Juanita Broaddrick, 1978
Cover-up continuing, 2020

Tara Reade, 1993
Cover-up continuing, 2020

Has nothing changed for Democratic Party leaders in those 42 years?

It’s almost as though the #MeToo era, two and a half years at most, the briefest of lights in two dark generations, never occurred at all.

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  1. Futurebroketeacher

    Lost a friend over the Tara Reade allegations. I don’t vote for rapists.

    1. CitizenSissy

      Will you be voting Trump, then? Where’s the equivalent whattaboutism for the crowd who previously dismissed any woman’s statement, but all of a sudden Tara Reade is credible. Not at all a fan of Biden since the disgraceful Clarence Thomas hearings, but fear another four years of Trump.

        1. CitizenSissy

          Sorry, no. DNC is a disaster, but my vote will be cast solely for the purpose of removing Trump and this odious iteration of the Republican Party.

          1. Lil’D

            Good for you.
            I have to abide by my personal integrity.
            I am not responsible for anyone voting for Trump.
            I’m completely responsible for my own vote. It won’t go to trump, but it won’t go to Biden either.

            1. albrt

              Same here. When you live in a third world country with rigged elections and no minimally acceptable candidates on the ballot, sometimes the only honorable thing to do is boycott.

            2. CitizenSissy

              Good for you. That principled protest vote will contribute to another four years of Trump. Remind me again how the current administration has promoted women’s interests?

              1. furies

                A choice between two rapists…hmmm.

                There is no difference to me who wins. Both parties have the very same goals, and they don’t give a toss about us.

                Not buying the ‘difference’ anyfu**ing more.

                1. CitizenSissy

                  I remember this same conversation four years ago. How’d that work out?

                  1. ambrit

                    At least we didn’t get into a war with Russia. Hillz would have bumbled us into one through the Syria Regime Change Scam.
                    We were “given” a horrible choice back then, and we “have” a horrible choice now.
                    Burn it all down. Take the elites down with us.

                  2. Oso

                    worked out same as your choice would have. continued oppression. you really need to walk the self-righteousness back, we’re all adults here with varying levels of resources and backgrounds. my guess is you’re european descent. myself and any other non-europeans here certainly don’t need a lecture on which oppressor to vote for.

                  3. Mason

                    Yeah, I’m sorry but your attitude grinds my gears. Your pushing me into a corner where I am just not going to vote Dem. It’s an attitude of fall in line or it’s your fault.

                    The democratic party chose the worst possible candidate to back and it’s their fault. I’m sorry if we get four more years of trump but stop brow-beating us for it.

                    This whole election cycle is completely disillusioning and demoralizing. The Dems are not even our pretend friends, just enemies in the open.

              2. polar donkey

                You know Biden isn’t the nominee yet. The democrats could just dump his Boo Radley living in a basement, demented, plagiarizing, corporate whoring, sexual assaulting, sorry ass.

                1. drumlin woodchuckles

                  The DNC could do that. But not for Sanders. Perhaps for Kamala Harris or some other pro-upper-class person.

          2. ambrit

            The events so far this year indicate that Biden will be an extension of The Obama Grift. Would you vote for Obama again, knowing what you do now?
            Trump is no better, but, at this stage of the game, four more years of Trump will be a political version of religious chiliasm. Bring on the End Days. This system is ready for the grave.
            Hunker down and prepare for a severely constrained personal world. Regionalism is coming.

            1. CitizenSissy

              Trump is far worse, and regionalism is here. And yes, I’d vote again for Obama. I refuse to throw up my hands, give up and resign myself to the End Days.

              1. ambrit

                Show us a reasonably viable ‘change’ movement with a shot at governing, and I’ll vote for them. As for the Democrat or Republican versions of political parties in America today, from my working class vantage point, I see no difference between the two. I measure this ‘metric’ by the policy and programs supplying “concrete material benefits” for the mass of the population on offer.
                Bad as Trump is, by screwing Sanders out in the open and then supporting the blatant segregation of wealth in America in the favour of the top elites through voting for the CARES Acts, the Democrat party has poisoned the well for the bottom half of the American population.
                Back in the 2016 election, no one seems to have the honesty to admit that Clinton ran a piss poor campaign. Clinton had the election, if she would have run a basic political campaign. I dare say that Howard Dean could have dragged Clinton across the victory line. But Clinton lost. Even then, the election was very close. This time, given a Democrat candidate of equally deplorable lineaments, considering the Pandemic, I’ll go out on that rotten limb and suggest that the 2020 election is once again the Democrat Parties to lose. So far, the Democrat Party looks to be using the same debunked play book that lost the 2016 election for Clinton. What is that ‘definition’ of insanity again?

              2. NotTimothyGeithner

                Aren’t you giving up? You only seem to care about Trump “being far worse” without adding anything to why he would be worse. Its the classic Democratic quitter attitude.

                I should point out, you aren’t really arguing against Trump and largely acknowledging you don’t care about outcomes.

              3. Sueliz70

                Biden may be worse than Trump, something the NeverTrumps of the left won’t acknowledge. What to expect from a Biden presidency:

                1. Gut social security, a long-time plan of Biden’s (repubs cannot get this done on their own for political reasons, any more than they could get NAFTA passed – it takes a Democrat)
                2. Eliminate any possibility of Medicare for All or any healthcare program that does not have as its primary focus enriching the private equity that backs it.
                3. Claim that after all the bailouts for the rich, we can’t afford a safety net. Work with Republicans to gut what we have.
                4. Ensure that Republicans take over so many state governorships and legislatures that they can launch a constitutional convention to amend the constitution without ANY democratic input. Refuse to oppose Republican efforts to suppress the vote.
                5. Get into a war with Russia and perhaps Iran, and pump up the military to dizzying proportions.
                6. Bring back the disastrous TPP, and TTIP (TPP for Europe). With the Investor/State Settlement Dispute System, which places the profits of foreign multinationals above ALL domestic laws regarding worker rights and the environment, end any attempts to combat global warming (any attempts would be required to compensate polluting corporations for whatever their accountants say they are losing in complying with common-sense regulation).
                7. Unctuously declare how “woke” the Democratic party is by electing blacks and women who universally back policies for the rich.
                8. Ensure Republicans take over the House and Senate from 2022 on – which is what Biden WANTS, so he can work with them to ensure policies favoring the rich can never be repealed (which is what the TPP is for).
                9. Permanently put in place governmental financial support that ensures whatever risks Wall Street takes, if they fail, taxpayers will bail them out automatically.
                10. The American people will be so impoverished that they will follow whatever right wing fake populist shows up – probably someone as bad as Trump but way smarter. Left wing populists will be spending their time apologizing for Biden and will offer nothing.

                For these reasons, I cannot vote for Biden. Hang fire on the Senate in November, elect as many Dems as possible to take it over, and attack them severely if they try to work with Trump. Let him live out the next 4 years as an impotent goon screaming at the television and tweeting from the Oval Office….

            2. Quantum Future

              Yes Ambrit, I voted for Trump to accelerate breaking things. But a push toward nationalism which is the logical course when globalism fails.

      1. swangeese

        Not voting for either one, but I subscribe to the idea that Biden is the more effective evil.

        Yes he is a dotard like Trump ,but at least with Trump there is a smidgen of resistance from liberals even if it is token. After all it takes a Democrat to destroy what shreds of a safety net we have.

        Trump, on the other hand, has no ideology. He’s open to anything that will flatter him. At least something Left has a minuscule chance. If Biden gets in, abandon any thoughts on anything decent getting through.

        Biden will just pack the government with more neoliberal stooges that will continue the razing the country, but with a nice shiny virtue signaling plastic veneer. Krystal Ball on Rising has a segment about how Virginia’s government is a preview of the Biden administration. Nada for things that matter, but rather is focusing energy on identity politics. Because identity politics are cheap, easy, and a great cover to fool the Democrat/MSNBC/NYT crowd into thinking that they are getting something. When in actuality, they are getting less than nothing.

        Either way both parties are your active enemies and we’re in for bleak times at least for a couple of years. And that’s being hopeful. There’s no exiting this mess quickly or gracefully.

        The only way to win is simply not to play their games. And by organizing.

        Fear only makes you putty in someone else’s hands.

        1. Futurebroketeacher

          If Biden gets elected, the two party dictatorship continues. That is the greater evil. Also, if Biden gets elected it will be just a matter of time before a real fascist like Richard Spencer rises.

      2. Futurebroketeacher

        It’s going to the Green Party. Cry more, CitizenSissy – an apt handle for you. BTW, utilitarians themselves rejected pure utilitarianism, thus act utilitarianism. Not sure why people leave that huge fact out when advocating for pure utilitarianism like you.

        1. CitizenSissy

          While we’re on the subject of apt handles — Future Broke Teacher? That implies a resignation not necessarily attractive in a future educator. Remind me again how futile windmill tilting helps the situation? Not crying, hon, just doing my part to participate in GOTV. Greens absolutely have many worthwhile policy positions, but, IMHO, outreach needs work.

          1. drumlin woodchuckles

            It was said that ” only Nixon could go to China.” In the same way, ” only a Democrat can destroy Social Security”.

            You want us to vote for a Democrat who has already said he wants to ” go to China” against Social Security.

            Why do you hate Social Security?

            Why Sissy Why?

        2. randomworker

          Pair up with another future broke teacher and you will land firmly in the top 20%.

      3. clarky90

        The Dems could have, so easily, chosen Tulsi Gabbard as their candidate. But their MSM lackies, (or are the Dems the lackies of the MSM? My head hurts!) sidelined/buried Tulsi’s campaign.

        Tulsi would have appealed to many lefty Repubs, Independents, Libertarian, Greens. Tulsi vs The Donald! What a contest!

        The Dems rank and file would have voted for Tulsi- They typically do as they are told……

        Dem fervent support of the loathsome, Joseph Biden proves my point. Could they have found a more abhorrent candidate????

        1. HotFlash

          Both are lackies of the .01%, who made it very very clear that Tulsi, Bernie, even Liz, would not be tolerated. The .01% does not actually chose sides WRT parties, like all good capitalists they hedge. They pay both sides to make sure that R’s and D’s deliver to them. One party is the face, t’other is the heel, (it alternates from time to time) while the MSM plays the referee (they are rigged, too). Whichever party wins, the promoter makes the money.

  2. Judith

    Interesting (and depressing) juxtaposition of posts this morning, Yves. Three meditations on the abuse of power.

    Parenthetically, the interaction between Juanita Broaddrick and HRC was disturbing. The Clintons are deeply weird.

      1. ambrit

        The ‘Black’ electorate is not a monolithic bloc any more, if it ever was. The older Blacks come out and vote much more than the younger cohort, but that is true of pretty much any distinct population. I’ll guess that the older Blacks remember Truman and Johnson and their roles in advancing Civil rights, and are so loyal to the Party those Presidents represent. This might be a political case of Max Planck’s observation concerning science: “[It] advances one funeral at a time.” Memories are long. I dated a young woman who remembered the Klan burning a cross on their front lawn because they were Catholics in the Bible Belt. Somehow I doubt if anyone could ‘rehabilitate’ the Klan in that woman’s mind.

      2. flora

        Don’t forget BC’s admin jailed half a generation of young black men – the so-called super predators – when BC was pres. Oh yeah, the Clintons are “friends” of the aa community alright, “friends” of the womens movement, “friends” of all sorts of disadvantaged communities. ( They’re actual friends (no quote marks) of Wall St. and the tbtf banks.)

        Joe seems like a continuation of that Dem party’s “ah feel your pain” scam, imo.

        What’s changed in the last 40 years? We now have young, Dem, so-called progressive women politicians joining the denigration and dismissal. Progress? When Michelle refers to voters as “our people” what is she thinking? Voters are the Dem party’s property?

      3. Futurebroketeacher

        The kids are alright. It’s the old ones who hold back progress. The neoliberalism that they voted for, they’re going to get good and hard.

        1. HotFlash

          Fbt, I must protest, I never, ever did such a thing! We olds are not all the same, and many of us are/were Dems* and progressives. I think you might find the breakdown more by class/income lines than age. Do you have any idea of how old we-all are here at NC? The demographic might surprise you. My Dad who died at 96 was a staunch Dem and huge fan of FDR (not so keen from Clinton on), he once interviewed Eleanor Roosevelt and one of his proudest possessions was a photo of him with his steno book and the First Lady.

          * a lot of Demexit around these parts.

  3. Tom Stone

    I have also lost “Friends” over Tara Reade’s accusation’s
    Saying “I’m not a liberal, I have principles” did not smooth the waters.
    A point, in both of these cases some one these women trusted violently assaulted them with no warning, a very similar tactic to the way strong armed robbers work.
    It is totally unexpected and while the victim is still in shock the assailant
    completes their crime.
    And the victim is still asking themselves “Is this really happening?”
    Unless you have trained reflexes by the time your mind can accept what’s happening it’s over.

    1. John Zelnicker

      @Tom Stone
      May 9, 2020 at 7:34 am

      “Unless you have trained reflexes by the time your mind can accept what’s happening it’s over.”

      This is the key factor that all too many skeptics and critics (especially men), never seem to understand or acknowledge when they start asking why the victim didn’t fight or yell or try to escape.

      Rapists work fast, just like armed bank robbers, overwhelming the ability of the mind to comprehend and process what’s happening. At least, not fast enough to take any defensive action. And then, there’s the natural fear of additional physical harm.

      IMO, this is basic human psychology and this line of questioning should be called out for the bullsht that it is.

  4. Off The Street

    Bill Clinton looking shocked.
    He was captured on film at a debate, where he happened to see some of his alleged victims sitting at a table.
    His look showed viewers that those women were more than alleged victims.
    HIs look also reinforced graphically why the Clinton Machine was so reviled.
    Sometimes being confronted with the truth in a visceral, emotional, raw, unscripted, unspinnable, no-BS way is the only method of cutting through the politican’s lies.
    In the end, they have no decency.

    1. Off The Street

      See DDG links for the photo, and more search results if you can stand it.

      Probably should’ve referenced politicians’ lies in prior comment.

  5. The Rev Kev

    I already commented yesterday how I thought that modern feminist and women with power have proved themselves absolutely comprised by defending Biden over Reade. Haven’t heard much from Republican women with power much. It is a pity that Bill Clinton was not charged with rape back then as the proof was there. He could have then served a stretch in Arkansas’s Cummins Unit and maybe lived up to his nickname of Slick Willy.

    It would have finished his political career and Hillary would have dropped him like second-hand toilet paper and gone on to find another politician to attach her star too. Long term that may have led to no NAFTA, no repealing the Glass–Steagall Act, no reducing the number of media companies from dozens down to six, same with military defense companies. I know – dream on.

    The Democrats will not stop defending Biden you know. It will get to the point where the women of the House Democratic caucus, including the progressives, and will pull out their white suits of purity yet once again and sing a song in the House in honour of him to prove their allegiance to him-

  6. thoughtfulperson

    I see these incidents as consistent with the standard operating procedures of the ruling class – while at the time these incidents occurred these men were not at the pinnacle of power – they had learned most of the methods. Isn’t there an echo, on an individual level, of the shock doctrine here? Of the lack of empathy we see in ruling class policy?

    Our rulers may well have been abused themselves at earlier times in their lives. I wouldn’t be surprised – though of course that is no excuse for their behavior. All part of elite training, learning to keep silent etc

    1. The Historian

      I agree with you. Taking what you want is a perk of power. Weinstein, Epstein, Trump, and even JFK, etc. are prime examples. But there is a difference between old power and new power. Old power has rules about which women can be abused and which cannot. This is probably taught to their young boys the first time they are caught abusing some girl. They aren’t taught that this kind of abuse is wrong, rather they are taught how to protect themselves. They also have the legal apparatuses in place so that if a woman objects, well, there are ways to handle her.

      New power, like Clinton and Biden, who didn’t come from wealth but see their more wealthy cronies taking and think they deserve some of that for themselves, haven’t learned the rules and don’t have protection already in place, so if they choose a wrong woman, a woman who is willing to stand up for her rights, they don’t know how to deal with it. And so they get caught and their abuses get splashed all over MSM. Compare what is happening with Biden v. what is happening with Trump, who also has a woman, Jean Carroll, accusing him of rape – and BTW, she isn’t the first.

        1. ShamanicFallout

          Another reason that Hemingway was wrong. The rich ARE different, and not simply that ‘they have more money’. But who and what do they actually serve?

  7. Medbh

    I think we need to turn some of the accusatory questions directed towards women/victims back against the perpetrators. For example, people will ask why a woman would accept an invitation to her boss’ hotel room. Instead we should be asking why a boss would invite a subordinate to his hotel room.

    When there is an imbalance of power, the presumption of guilt should apply to the person with the greater strength/power. Do not ask people to put themselves into potentially harmful/threatening situations. If you do, the assumption should be that you had negative intentions.

    If you’re someone with power who’s afraid of false accusations…then don’t put yourself in situations where you could be accused.

    1. HotFlash

      In the Meghan Kelly interview, Megan asks Tara Reade if she would take a lie detector test. Tara says Joe should be the one to do the test. Seems fair, given the power differential and the current stakes. She also says he should drop out. Well, maybe the DNC can swap in a stapler-thrower instead.

  8. GlobalMisanthrope

    My wife worked for the Texas Senate Research Center and was sexually harassed for almost a year by her boss. A colleague told her that others in the office had similar complaints and she met with them. As the four were strategizing about what to do, a male colleague came forward saying he had overheard one of the exchanges between my wife and her boss. It was only then and because of it that they felt comfortable taking their complaint to his boss, then Lt Governor Bob Bullock.

    Her boss was removed from his position to one in which he supervised no employees and was given a $10,000/year raise. My wife was offered, and accepted, a position in Governor Ann Richards office.

    Ironically, she was introduced to Bill Clinton by that boss when Clinton was in Texas for early meetings drumming up support for his ’92 race. She says that everyone was swooning over him, but that the way he looked at her when they shook hands made her want to go take a shower.

    This shit happens all the time right out in the open. I would say that most of the men I have known in my life are fully capable of forcing sex on a woman. All men know this and I would venture all women do, too. Why and how are we even debating this? I despair for all that is true when I read/hear these he said-she said musings. Honestly. It’s breathtakingly chilling. What a bunch of f*ing liars and cowards we are!

    1. furies

      It is very disappointing that nothing much has changed.

      I myself lost everything to a corrupt good ol’ boy family court system.

      I watched my mom get harassed by mechanics, service workers etc. etc after her divorce from my dad. I’ve always considered myself a ‘women’s libber’ just from that alone.

      My mother has been raped, my sister has been raped and I myself have very nearly been raped more than once. I used to recover abortion patients (former RN) and so many times the patients would tell me about the sexual abuse they suffered came up while on the table. SO MANY of my patients had been molested and raped…

      Honestly, after *my* divorce, men scare the crap outta me.

      1. Quantum Future

        I am sorry Furies you went through that. I am a man. I was molested at 2 and 9 years old. Growing up, I swore I would act as a gentleman and I did. In 1996 Hillary Clinton opened an office in Rochester NH where I lived. The #Metoo movement was an offshoot of those politics. I was sued as a small businessman from a woman that had five cases going on to make a living. So while I agree, some very powerful
        Politicians, big corp execs abused their power, I just want to consider a lot of small
        business guys have paid a price like you for being well, feeling above the law. I have a Mrs now. I would kill any man that raped her. Death or jail be damned.

        Your loved, however some of what you support to damn all males destroys society itself to conquest. When that happens you would be raped by all sorts of sociopaths, domestic and foreign. Car3fup with those scales of justice my dear. Focus on where it belongs.

    2. Futurebroketeacher

      Sexual abuse is absolutely rampant in this country. Despite the macho hollerings and prison revenge rape fantasies of American men, they do not care one whit about sexual abuse. A friend of mine lived in residential facilities in MA as a teen and encountered an unbelievable level of sexual abuse at private and state-run institutions for mentally ill teens. No one has been held to account and I assume the abuse continues.

  9. Dr. John Carpenter

    I was college age during the reign of Bill Clinton. I have him to thank for igniting my political idealism and dousing it with cynicism in the course of the same eight years. Unfortunately, it feels we’ve just been circling this same drain ever since.
    One interesting difference between Bill and Joe was I seem to recall the Limbaughs of the world knowing about Broaddrick very early on. Of course, it was easy to brush that off as partisan rumor mongering, because korseh knows there was tons of that. It took until the Lewinski story came out for the MSM to take any interest. And even then, it was still contextualized as some sort of rumor and Broaddrick never had her day.
    While the MSM are still doing their best to bury or minimize Reade’s story, it is interesting that the coverage in alternative (ie Internet) media has forced their hand in a way they couldn’t in the 90s. With the Dems and the #metoo movement digging in their heels on Biden so hard, I am skeptical about what comes of it. But I do think this is showing the power of the non-mainstream media in a way I don’t think we saw in the Clinton era.

    1. JTMcPhee

      Too bad that once again the progressives are focusing all their energies on supporting a soft dumb target for all the wrong reasons. Biden is a floppy candidate, and they have (and the Dems too) six months to ditch him for a better candidate. But nooo, “Biden probably did it but I’m still voting for him.”

      The Kavenaugh fight is on the front burner again. I forget, but didn’t the Dems have a strong hand to kick him out of the process via the kinds of rules usage that the Reps have used in their drive to power, just on policy and ideology grounds? Hard to go after Kav on that ground when they have the Kennedys as their aristocracy, particularly Ted “Chappaquiddick” Kennedy himself having ducked at least a negligent homicide rap and being a notorious pig. Still thinking that a pattern if power abuse toward women is going to idpol the Elite’s choices out of the running?

      And showing, in backing Biden, how weak a hammer that is in the imperial capital and in this Democracy Theater, where power is everything and the kind of experience Tara Reade had and is having is routine— not right, but routine.

      Hypocrites abound. The ones that really want to rule, to “govern,” will win. The ones who are just “on campus, protecting and trying to grow their rice bowls?” Look around at the state of play.

  10. Margret Brady

    At the age of 84, I find myself more surprised at the way sexual harassment stories and viewpoints remain so one sided. It’s alway assumes that the woman is telling the truth and the man lied or the event never occurred.

    I know few females, who have not been assaulted in some way in their lifetime but I also know that many of them, myself included managed to get away or prevent the attack. One thing that always bothered me was that men had little to fear from attempting those acts, from the women or the law. In fact it was almost expected of them , if they wanted to be considered truly a man.

    On the other hand, I also knew many women, who were sexual predators and during my 64 years of marriage, it was not uncommon for my husband and I to discuss incidents, involving both of us. A fact , we often found amusing and yes, his incidents were just as appalling as mine.

    What bothers me the most, however, was not knowing about the blatant destruction of my reputation, by the false claims of both men and women, without my knowledge for years. For example, one woman used my name when she and her married lover registered for hotel rooms together. At other times, she signed my name when registering to visit him at the large corporate office building, where he worked. I learned of that when I bumped into another executive at the same firm firm and he expressed surprise that I was not divorced because the supposed affair and been company gossip for years.

    Decades later, I learned of other men, eager to uphold their reputations as ladies men, had been bragging about non-existent affairs with me, telling their conquests that they were not as good in bed as I was. Meanwhile I wondered why those respected women and the wives of the men, treated me with such distain.

    I’m sure there are many women, who have suffered damage to their reputations and relationships, in the same manner and never knew the actual cause for the mistreatment or losses incurred as a result. I’m sure, I’m not the only one.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      I don’t know what parallel universe you live in. “It’s always assumed the woman is telling the truth?” Go look at how the women who accused Clinton were treated in the press, or how Tara Reade has been widely attacked in the press and social media, for starters. Or the results of sexual harrassment suits, or reports of women of how going through official channels at work turned out. Your assertion is wildly false. We only had a very brief window with Peak #MeToo where women’s claims were taken uncritically….and even then, #MeToo was only interested in elite women, not lower-status women who are harassed almost daily, like waitresses.

      1. polar donkey

        My wife told me about a guy that was wwwaaayyyy too forward with her. After she told me that, I was going to send gay porn magazine/dvd subscriptions to his church and home (family) in his name. My wife stopped me because he didn’t bother her again, but I was prepared to nuke that guy’s reputation. There are ways to punish people for bad behavior.

        1. polar donkey

          “I hate rude behavior in a man. I will not tolerate it.”
          Woodrow Call

  11. Tom Stone

    Will there be a memorial service for the #MeToo movement, and if so will Hillary Clinton deliver the eulogy?

  12. habenicht

    …but, but Joe Biden has “electibility” – wasn’t that his big strength?!

    So lame!

    I’ve heard comments that the Dems would rather lose with Biden than win with Sanders – which seems more and more true every day.

    1. HotFlash

      Dems and Reps both answer to their donors. What seems to be rivalry betw the parties is only the two vying for who will deliver and claim the bigger commission. In the end, both are handsomely paid to deliver to the .01%, and they do. Never, ever Sanders, the MotU won’t have it.

  13. Lee Christmas

    Thanks for posting the, Yves. I was too young at the time, but it’s shocking that the Lewensky scandal dominated the news more than this story. Is there some detail, some distinction, as to why this story did not catch on at the time as you had thought?

    The sad thing about then, and now, is that women are just pawns for power. Playthings playing paramours, or cudgels for your enemies. That assault is a spoil of war, for those that can survive the battle for power long enough. Or, it’s used to cut down one’s foes, of course timed for the maximum impact.

    The sadder thing is that of the countless women who carry the scars of assault, only those who brushed against power have any kind of reckoning. But this reckoning is bitter-sweet, as their lives will be endlessly examined and their story twisted to suit the needs of those looking for either a sword or a shield. Maybe it’s better to nurse your wound in the dark, or to not have your scars viewed by the public.

    The saddest thing is that we had a choice, we still have a choice to demand something different. The specter that hangs over our anointed savior does not haunt all those that seek to wield power. At least, I hope it does not.

  14. Adam Eran

    Sexual misbehavior has a pretty long history in this country. Thomas Jefferson had a 14-year-old black mistress named Sally Hemmings. She was fathered by Jefferson’s white father-in-law. This is the kind of shadow fact behind the “nobility” of the founders.

    1. HotFlash

      I have heard her called his ‘mistress’ before, and always wondered why. ‘Mistress’ implies dominance, or at least agency. Ms Hemmings was a concubine.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      Help me. You can also find op-eds supporting dodgy Trump behavior, and as we’ve had to point out, numerous press stories that distort what he said to dirty him up (as if that’s necessary, but it appears Trump needs to be demonized every news cycle, as opposed to sticking to his already numerous bad acts).

      And remember how many lawyers were all aboard with Russiagate, and that fell apart completely?

      One view means squat, particularly when other prosecutors disagree. For instance:

      I actually listened closely to the entire interview with Katie Halper before I formed an opinion about Tara Reade’s allegations — I’ve personally listened to and examined on the witness stand dozens of victims of sexual assault and have had to form a professional opinion about the validity of each of their claims. Such claims are not always valid, but I think that I developed a pretty finely-honed ability to judge them in my 34 years in working in a prosecutor’s office, 32 of them as an attorney.

      Everything about Tara Reade and the way that she conveys what happened to her rings true to me after “the entire consideration and comparison of all the evidence.”

      Moreover, this story distorts key facts. Her story did not change. She added details, which is consistent with abuse victims who initially are reluctant to say much. From a former prosecutor who cancelled his Nation subscription over the Joan Walsh hit piece:

      Walsh then drags out the trope that a woman sharing more detail over time is “changing” her story. Ms. Reade’s reluctance to share details is understandable in light of how people like Mr. Biden himself publicly treated Anita Hill, and the recent public abuse of Christine Blasley Ford. Until Super Tuesday many, myself included, believed that Mr. Biden’s candidacy was going down in flames. Why drag oneself and one’s family through the mud?

      In addition, it is also clear that Reade decided NOT to pursue charges against Biden, in part due to the potential damage to him, in part no doubt due to fear over the difficulty of going up against so powerful an individual. This prosecutor adopts the BS frame that unless a victim files charges, she is not to be taken seriously. Juanita Broaddrick didn’t either.

      And Reade had to have taken note with what happened to Broadderick. Her revelations were largely ignored and she experienced a great deal of personal vilification.

      As for the documents, Reade said, contrary to the prosecutor’s insinuation, that she kept few records from her time with Biden, and also described how the set-up of the complaint intake office didn’t allow for making a copy. She also points out that all the people who claim they recall nothing are still either working for Biden or very much in his sphere of influence. And Biden has falsely asseted that the records would be released when they haven’t been.

      1. Oso

        “Moreover, this story distorts key facts. Her story did not change. She added details, which is consistent with abuse victims who initially are reluctant to say much”
        thank you, Yves Smith.

  15. David in Santa Cruz

    The “Democrats” are anything but.

    Biden has not been nominated. If Tara Reade hadn’t been lulled like the rest of us into thinking that there was no way that “Bite-me” was going to get past Super Tuesday, he would have been done-for long ago.

    This reminder of Juanita Broderick is masterful — but the lesson is that the “Democrats” have learned nothing. They remain the party of Bill Clinton and Harvey Weinstein. Young voters will —rightly — stay away from the polls in droves this November. The “choice” between two slime-ball predators is no choice at all.

    Don’t vote. It only encourages them.

    1. HotFlash

      You may as well vote, it’s not a big deal — well, mostly not. It can’t hurt, and it might help. Just don’t expect much and don’t accept obviously rigged results. They count the votes, so IMO, it depends on whose rigging of the machines prevails. Thought experiment: If we can’t vote with our ballots, ‘coz they don’t count, what else could we vote with?

  16. Fred Grosso

    Tara is a sad, abused, dishonest, dysfunctional, exploited, failed person. Biden is a creepy preening asshole. Trump is not alone, his corporate cannibal supporters and the Republicans are evil. Tara was abused early in life, her ambition was denied and she was rejected by the Biden gang. She didn’t report the sexual assault she describes today because she wasn’t brave enough, angry enough , fearful, too kind or it didn’t happen. Her life is a shambles. Tara is a human who deserves some peace in her life. We do not need to believe her to shun Biden. For me, it was the same with Kavanaugh. I saw weak character, a hollow man testify before the committee evaluating him. After the sexual allegations I found his response creepy, incredulous and unworthy of a seat on the Supreme Court. Tara needs help, believing her about Biden doesn’t help her.

  17. Daniel Raphael

    Thanks for this article, the best one I’ve seen in awhile. I copied the link for future reference, and tweeted it yesterday.

  18. Mattski

    Hope that you-all are paying attention to the emergence of the Movement for A People’s Party. Please pay special attention to the provisional platform.

    As some here will have heard, Nina Turner has left the Democratic Party and is joining us. Cornell West and many others are on board (see list of sponsors at site). Mass call for members of local organizations Thursday; if you would like an invitation, let me know here– I will help to arrange it.

    MK Political Outreach Committee, MPP

  19. Usually Right - Unfortunately

    Part of why I believed Hillary lost the election because she didn’t weigh in on this and other accounts. And what she did to Monica sealed the deal. Many women bit our lips when we vote. The same will happen this year – if there even is an election since the President will have the opportunity to issue an executive order. Just saying.

  20. drumlin woodchuckles

    I recently heard a lengthy talk on NPR from Rebecca Traister on why “Believe the Woman”, actually means ” Take the Woman seriously and then carefully vet and investigate her claims”. Just like Joe Biden says.

    Neither Rebecca Traister nor any other Feminist showed any trace of such fairness to Senator Al Franken.
    After what the Feminists did to Al Franken, and will not do to Joe Biden, I will never trust or support any Feminists or any Feminism ever again.

    Never ever.

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