Friday, July 26, 2019

Explaining Celebrity Perversion

It's pretty widely accepted that Jeffrey Epstein is a dam, and when his case breaks, all sorts of famous, powerful people will be publicly embarrassed (at the very least). It seems reasonably clear, though not yet conclusively proven, that he's been running a massive extortion racket around a massive child prostitution operation, with his clients/blackmail-ees paying millions into his "wealth management" service in exchange for provision of pleasure + avoidance of pain (a perfect carrot/stick ploy).

The question, of course, is why so many rich/powerful people would be titillated by child rape. Are the rich and powerful extra perverted?

My take is that wealth and power is all about whim fulfillment, so a mere latent whim can easily become lifestyle. For example, a normal person might have reveries about unattainable girls he crushed on in junior high, while billionaires can go out and buy one of those.

I wouldn't be in that market even if I could afford it. However, it wouldn't be much of a stretch to deem my infrequent steamy recollections of lovely Dorothy G back in eighth grade tantamount to thought crime, given that I'm remembering as a 56 year old.

Thinking and acting are different things, but those who spend their lives machinating to be in a position of easy whim fulfillment (i.e. the rich and powerful) tend to have poor impulse control. That's what drives them in the first place. Me, I don't need a billion dollars because my whims are pretty tamped down...a situation that happens not to strike me as a screaming injustice.

Finally (courtesy of Dave Halpern), if you live The Big Life, quotidian pleasures no longer suffice. Bigger thrills are eternally sought.

When I sold Chowhound, and it was widely assumed that co-founder Bob™ and I were swimming in dough (we wound up decently recompensed for our years of unpaid work with no bonus for the risk or deferment), a Chowhound regular who'd made hundreds of millions from some crazy deal emailed me some advice. He suggested that I "enjoy the money; it stops meaning anything pretty quickly." Oddly, all these years later I still thrill whenever I take a paid tunnel into NYC or order multiple side dishes or use a parking garage (rather than endlessly circle for parking). I go Cuckoo-for-Cocoa-Puffs every damned time. I honestly believe there's something structurally wrong with my brain (I've also never taken a single kiss for granted, even with long-term girlfriends).


Display Name said...

What an amazing read. Now I got to bolt out the door to the post office. After 21 years most of my stuff sells for just under five bucks each. I get an electric rush every time I get an email saying you have received an instant cash payment. Every single time. Gah gotta go

Anonymous coward said...

I watched a documentary called "Inside Job" I have no idea if the information in it was correct or not, I was at the peak of my anti-vaxxing mindset to give you an idea of my ability to critical think and process info. Within the documentary wall street CEOs had six private jets, did drugs, and used high end prostitutes.

"She claims that the Street’s corporate culture involves abundant sex and drugs for bankers and their top clients, with large sums of money spent on prostitutes and cocaine."

Again, I have no idea if the above is correct or not, but it does reinforce what you are saying.

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