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The Harvey Weinstein video: I’m sorry, but it looked more to me like flirting to sell a product than sexual harassment

September 14, 2018
Harvey Weinstein and Melissa Thompson in his office
Sky News

The porcine, priapic Harvey Weinstein gives me the creeps, too, and it’s always fun to watch liberals eat each other. But, really, is this any way to conduct a business meeting?

Am I allowed to flirt with you?

Ummm, we’ll see, a little bit.

A little bit, not too much?

And that’s a little more than thirty seconds after Melissa Thompson, one of the latest of Weinstein’s claimed rape victims, is into her supposed sales pitch in Weinstein’s office for some kind of software gizmo–the sales pitch on the video that she’s now shopping around to the media. (You can watch the video here.)

Thompson has a master’s degree in business administration from Columbia, but she must have missed the class where they tell you that if your customer acts more interested in you than in what you’re selling, it’s time to do a little cost-benefit analysis on what your time is worth and pack up your product and leave.

Also, you’d look more serious if you didn’t wear a form-fitting leather dress, push your glasses up to the top of your head (don’t you need them to see that laptop screen?), and gaze coquettishly into the eyes of your customer and even touch his shoulder as you sit side by side? I don’t think leather garments are on John “Dress for Success” Molloy’s list of power clothing for businesswomen–unless by “power” you mean the kind that Circe used to seduce Ulysses.

Here are a couple more conversational excerpts from that video that the then-28-year-old Thompson made–apparently for marketing purposes for the tech startup where she worked–of her 2011 meeting with Weinstein inside his locked film office in lower Manhattan:

Data’s so hot, right?

It is hot. You’re hot.

Didn’t Thompson get a little hint at that point that whatever “analytics” on the “digital marketing platform” she was pitching to Weinstein weren’t really registering with him?

And then there’s this postlude to Weinstein’s allegedly putting his hand up Thompson’s  leg (the video doesn’t actually show that because they were sitting at a table, but it’s what Thompson says):

Let me have a little part of you. Give it to me. It’s okay, would you like to do it some more?

A little bit… a little high, that’s a little high, that’s a little high.

Wouldn’t Thompson’s allegations of sexual abuse by Weinstein be more convincing if she’d slapped that hand away instead of responding, “A little bit,” when he asked her if she wanted to “do it some more”?

But as Thompson told Sky News in the exclusive interview in which she aired the video: “I didn’t want to blow the meeting.”

And indeed she didn’t. She agreed to meet Weinstein again that very afternoon for drinks at a nearby hotel, where, she says, instead of closing the deal as she’d hoped, he hustled her up to a bedroom suite he’d rented (which she for some reason thought was going to be a conference room, even though it was on the third floor) and sexually assaulted her. She recently filed a class-action civil suit for damages over the alleged incident and is now involved in a further legal dispute with a lawyer to whom she’d sent the complete tape of the Weinstein office incident (the version on Sky News is heavily edited). Weinstein, meanwhile, has denied that the sex with Thompson was non-consensual.

I dunno. Why is it that so many of Weinstein’s alleged sexual misdeeds had a transactional component? Women who hoped to get something–movie roles, a “digital marketing platform” sale–out of meeting him somewhere that anyone could tell them was completely inappropriate and putting up, sometimes for an afternoon as Thompson did, but sometimes for years, with behavior that anyone could tell them was completely inappropriate?

Posted by Charlotte Allen

From → Uncategorized

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