When Ben Stein opens his mouth in the media, it generally takes under a minute for him to yet again show anyone reading or listening that he is an unmitigated classist, entitled douchecanoe.
But Ben Stein has topped even Ben Stein in the asshole stakes, by penning a thoroughly offensive piece for the American Spectator in which he basically says rich, white people don’t belong in jail, even if there is sufficient evidence they’ve committed violent crimes. Because that’s where poors go!
Stein’s invective will truly make your skin crawl. To be fair, Dominique Strauss-Kahn has obviously not yet been convicted of a crime. Still, sufficient evidence exists for him to have been placed in prison without bail. A place, Stein argues, Strauss-Kahn has only been taken because no one wants to admit the truth- people are jealous of his wealth.
Among the salient points raised by Stein in the case:
If he is such a womanizer and violent guy with women, why didn’t he ever get charged until now? If he has a long history of sexual abuse, how can it have remained no more than gossip this long? France is a nation of vicious political rivalries. Why didn’t his opponents get him years ago?
Hmm… we could start with the difference between a “womanizer,” who is generally a man who has consensual sex, and a “violent rapist,” which is a person who forces a victim to have sex, violently.
In life, events tend to follow patterns. People who commit crimes tend to be criminals, for example. Can anyone tell me any economists who have been convicted of violent sex crimes? Can anyone tell me of any heads of nonprofit international economic entities who have ever been charged and convicted of violent sexual crimes? Is it likely that just by chance this hotel maid found the only one in this category? Maybe Mr. Strauss-Kahn is guilty but if so, he is one of a kind, and criminals are not usually one of a kind.
For that statement alone, Stein should be arrested for the violent rape of logic. But Stein also feels serious prisons are for poor people, and the word of someone with money and power is worth far more than that of working people:
People accuse other people of crimes all of the time. What do we know about the complainant besides that she is a hotel maid? I love and admire hotel maids. They have incredibly hard jobs and they do them uncomplainingly. I am sure she is a fine woman. On the other hand, I have had hotel maids that were complete lunatics, stealing airline tickets from me, stealing money from me, throwing away important papers, stealing medications from me. How do we know that this woman’s word was good enough to put Mr. Strauss-Kahn straight into a horrific jail? Putting a man in Riker’s is serious business.
Calling the alleged violent rape and possible sodomy “atrocious conduct,” (which sounds a bit more akin to sticking your fingers in the foie gras at a dinner party), Stein goes on to basically say that if poor people accuse rich people of crimes, it’s almost always really just pure jealousy at work:
In what possible way is the price of the hotel room relevant except in every way: this is a case about the hatred of the have-nots for the haves, and that’s what it’s all about. A man pays $3,000 a night for a hotel room? He’s got to be guilty of something. Bring out the guillotine.
Stein then wraps up by calling the case an “embarrassment to our country.” I think Stein was actually spot on about guillotines, but it isn’t Strauss-Kahn who should be hauled into the square. Has the time yet arrived for Ben Stein to shut the fuck up already? Is there any way his comments can be construed as understandable or logical by any stretch of the imagination?