Sexual abuse

Jimmy Savile BBC report parallels with Catholic church scandals

Janet Smith’s report on Jimmy Savile has found no evidence that senior managers knew of his crimes.

Of course, this is not the same as saying they didn’t know, only that they left no trail leading back to themselves, but it’s still enough to give the BBC some comfort. Today’s senior managers must be chortling over their port and stilton at their decision to pay only £1 million to Saville’s victims while reserving £6.5 million for the lawyers who operated the inquiry. Money well spent.

By a simple process of reductio ad absurdum, we can reason as follows. If senior managers really didn’t know what Jimmy Savile was up to then the BBC was run by the most incompetent buffoons in the history of broadcasting. But of course the BBC is probably the best operation of its kind in the world. Ergo, it was not run by fools and therefore yes, of course they bloody-well knew, just as the Catholic bishops knew.

They all knew.

Everyone, inside the BBC and outside was well aware of Savile’s proclivities. Everyone from the janitor to the Director-General must have had at least an inkling that a violent sexual predator was at large on their many premises. A rapist with untrammelled access to vulnerable young people, facilitated by a culture of deference very similar indeed to the obsequious forelock-tugging once enjoyed by Catholic priests in Ireland.

The parallels with the Catholic church are astonishing both in the way the BBC allowed the abuser to continue for so long, and also in the way the establishment has prioritised its own survival over the rights of the victims and the demands of natural justice.

Imagine having an inquiry that is not allowed to compel senior managers to give evidence. What is the point of such an inquiry? What precisely is the difference between the aloof distance of these functionaries and the haughty disdain of the Roman Catholic bishops when first confronted with the reality of what their priests had been up to? Remember Cardinal Cathal Daly’s flaccid defence that he had no authority over Brendan Smyth and therefore no right to intervene.

Of course, Janet Smith’s report isn’t entirely without merit. One thing that comes out very clearly is the amount of fear that existed in the BBC. Fear of angering an abuser so well established he had the power to destroy people’s careers. Fear of disturbing the equilibrium of the princes of the BBC church. Fear of being disbelieved. Fear, perhaps, of physical assault by Savile who in his younger days was not only a rapist and a psychopath but also a violent thug. Fear of being charged by the very police Savile had in his pocket.

Calling the report a whitewash, a lawyer representing 168 of Savile’s victims pointed out that the BBC bishops only had to scratch at the surface to find out the truth. Savile attacked children from 10 years of age in every single BBC building he visited. Many well-known presenters including Terry Wogan and Esther Rantzen reported their concerns but BBC bosses did nothing because they had no hard evidence, thus violating one of the fundamental rules of child protection. They applied a legalistic standard of proof, just as the Catholic bishops did, instead of intervening to protect the children by severing all relations with Savile.

Just like the bishops, the BBC placed children in danger.

The obvious question is still unanswered. Was Jimmy Savile part of a paedophile ring in the BBC? Were other members of such a ring protecting him? Do members of any such ring still remain in senior BBC positions?

The BBC needs to learn from the experience of the Irish Catholic church, whose credibility has been utterly demolished by its evasions, its failures to confront the truth but most importantly its assumption that people are fools. If they had any sense, they would immediately appoint an independent person to examine all of their operations because if they don’t, this thing will continue to haunt them. All they need to is phone the Archbishop of Dublin if they want to know the dismal truth.




Full text HERE

Conclusions HERE




Was Jimmy Savile The Other Yorkshire Ripper?

In a previous post, I pointed out that Jimmy Savile and Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper, were close friends, but how close has yet to be established.

Certainly, they had much in common: both were psychopaths with a tendency to violence and a hatred of women.  Not only that, but both of them were questioned by the police during the Ripper investigation and indeed, one of the murder victims was found very close to Savile’s flat.

Here’s what Sutcliffe said in his defence.

Oh that’s a load of rubbish.  It’s a load of crap.  People were always there.  He was never alone with anybody.  He never did anything at Broadmoor.  They’re just getting carried away. They’re going right over the top with it.  They’re all jumping on the bandwagon.  He’d always come and chat and I’d introduce him to my visitors.  Several times he left £500 for charities I was supporting.  He wrote cheques out on the spot.  A very generous man he was.  I can’t fault him for what he was like from my experiences anyway.  I don’t care what these people who who are coming out of the woodwork are saying, you know? It takes a couples of rumours then it goes like wildfire, don’t it?  I don’t believe he raped anybody.  I think he’s kissed quite a few young women, but that’s as far as he’s gone.  No, it’s just kind of crazy, you know?  They’re just [interested in] savaging people who are dead, you know?  People who can’t hit back or prisoners who can’t reply, you know?

Savile had living quarters in Broadmoor psychiatric hospital, and also at Stoke Mandeville.  He had the run of these institutions, with unlimited access to every part of them, including the morgues, where, among other things, he took indecent photos of dead people.

Besides that, he was able to abuse nurses with impunity, in the certain knowledge that senior doctors would dismiss their complaints, which is what happened.  His victims, we now know, ranged in age from 5 to 75, with his last crimes committed at the age of 82.

Not only was a Jimmy Savile an abuser, but a necrophiliac as well.  He was a close friend of Peter Sutcliffe, and we know that the police regarded him as sufficiently important to interview about the Ripper murders.

Given that Savile was an utterly merciless abuser with no sense of right and wrong, no remorse, no empathy for other people,  a tendency to violence, an extremely manipulative instinct and a morbid interest in sexual acts with corpses, is it such a big leap to think that he might also have been a murderer?

Would a man like this, a man with plenty of money, who correctly calculated that he was above suspicion, not have abducted and killed vulnerable people for his own gratification?

I find it hard to imagine he would not have done that.  Will the police be reopening investigations to establish if he had any involvement in the Ripper killings or any other unsolved murders?



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Crime Media

Max Clifford Arrested in Jimmy Savile Investigation

PR eats itself.

Back in 1986, Max Clifford wrote one of the most infamous headlines in tabloid history — Freddie Starr Ate My Hamster.

Little did he realise that Starr would be arrested 26 years later on suspicion of molesting a 14-year-old girl in Jimmy Savile’s dressing-room, or that, barely a month after that, he himself would be arrested as part of the same general investigation, arising from the activities of one prolific abuser.

Some of the papers are being remarkably coy about reporting on this story.  They’re happy enough to name Gary Glitter as a suspect, but of course, if your cat had kittens you might decide to pin it on Gary Glitter.  The problem is, when there’s a convenient one-size-fits-all suspect, it’s easier to switch off our critical faculties and reach for the nearest bad guy.

The papers are also happy enough to report the questioning of Dave Lee Travis and Wilfred De’Ath, but not the mysterious man in his 80s from Berkshire.  I wonder who that could possibly be?

Now here’s Max Clifford having his collar felt by the rozzers, though of course that proves nothing at all.  The Old Bill has nicked plenty of stand-up blokes and fitted up more than a few, so let’s not assume they’re above reproach.  It wouldn’t be the first time the Surrey police came up with a theory and bent the facts to fit it, as the Guildford Four would tell you.

What a shit-storm Jimmy Savile has caused.  They’re now talking about 400 cases of abuse and the number keeps growing.   Anyone who was part of his broader circle, even in the most peripheral way, is falling under suspicion, possibly for a very good reason.  I’ve often noticed how men of Savile’s generation – even perfectly decent men  – have a very crude and mechanistic view of sex.  Their jokes tend to be juvenile, uninformed and embarrassing, and oddly enough, despite all his posturing, Savile was very much a member of the older generation.  He might have grown his hair long, but he was always an old guy pretending to be part of the new movement.  An old, manipulative predator as it turned out, but one whose predations were underpinned and reinforced by the attitudes of his generation.

Savile grew up on the wrong side of the great faultline that happened some time in the early sixties and that separates the Rolling Stones children from the Perry Como old folk.    One generation wears a cardigan, the other a denim jacket, and though there might be no more than five years between them in age, there’s a huge unbridgeable gulf in attitudes, largely in the new willingness to question things.

Clearly, of course, the Sixties didn’t mark the end of abusers and perverts any more than it marked the end of celebrities taking advantage of young girls.  It would surprise me if there were too many big-name rock stars, or even small-name stars, who didn’t take advantage of the groupies without being overly concerned about their ages, and maybe a wider investigation is called for arising from this case.

But I think a particular mindset is at work in the case of Savile and I think it has its roots in the era where he grew to whatever maturity he might have managed.  To my mind, he didn’t see women as real people, apart from the Norman Bates relationship he continued with his dead mother, the Duchess.  I don’t believe he ever had a relationship with an adult woman in his entire life, and by all accounts, his dealings with the young girls he abused were perfunctory and brutal.

Would a man like Savile be able to influence others of his own generation?  I think so.  I think some  men  of the drab, repressed war-time era would look on him with envy,  almost as a role  model at a time when society was reinventing itself.  Savile had somehow contrived to jump across the widening chasm that formed as old and new social continents drifted apart.  He seemed to dress and talk like the inhabitants of this new world but of course it was all as fake and embarrassing as your Dad going clubbing with your best friend.

Savile didn’t care.  There were enough people around who couldn’t tell the difference between a fake and the real thing and there were enough credulous 14-year-old girls to satisfy the demands of any pervert.  He was an influential man and he had no difficulty fooling the stuffy BBC establishment into believing that he was somehow groundbreaking and edgy when in reality, he was just one of them wearing a silly hairdo.

I have no doubt that Savile provided the unspoken permission for many middle-aged men to overcome their inhibitions and abuse young girls in his dressing-room and elsewhere, but like all such things, it will mean that many innocent people are drawn in and smeared by association.

Mud sticks and people talk.  The very fact of being arrested can be enough to destroy a person’s reputation, as the police know well and as Max Clifford also understands.  The wiliest PR man in the business will be fully aware of what this development means for his good name but what is he to do about it?

What publicist is good enough to represent Britain’s cleverest spin-doctor?




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Murder Sexual abuse

Yorkshire Ripper Supports Jimmy Savile

Well now.  How about that?  If your good name was under attack, who better than Peter Sutcliffe to speak out for you?  That ought to shut the gossips up.

Jimmy Savile were great bloke, chortles Yorkshire Ripper.  I’m tellin’ thee, Jim weren’t no pervert.

Of course he wasn’t, Peter.  Of course not.  Now put down that boning knife while we back slowly towards the door.

The stories about Jimmy Savile are becoming more and more bizarre, but the latest is without doubt the weirdest as a recording emerges of Peter Sutcliffe defending Jimmy Savile.

Here’s the transcript from a secret recording in Broadmoor.

Oh that’s a load of rubbish.  It’s a load of crap.  People were always there.  He was never alone with anybody.  He never did anything at Broadmoor.  They’re just getting carried away. They’re going right over the top with it.  They’re all jumping on the bandwagon.  He’s always come and chat and I’d introduce him to my visitors.  Several times he left £500 for charities I was supporting.  He wrote cheques out on the spot.  A very generous man he was.  I can’t fault him for what he was like from my experiences anyway.  I don’t care what these people who who are coming out of the woodwork are saying, you know? It takes a couples of rumours then it goes like wildfire, don’t it?  I don’t believe he raped anybody.  I think he’s kissed quite a few young women, but that’s as far as he’s gone.  No, it’s just kind of crazy, you know?  They’re just [interested in] savaging people who are dead, you know?  People who can’t hit back or prisoners who can’t reply, you know?

Oh well, that’s all right then.  A man who murdered thirteen women, dismembered them after he killed them and tried to murder seven more, condemns Savile’s critics for savaging people who are dead.  What better advocate could Jimmy have? People who can’t hit back and prisoners who can’t reply.  Right, Peter.

Jimmy Savile and Peter Sutcliffe seem to have quite a lot in common.  They were both big supporters of charities.  Both of them were questioned for the Ripper murders and subsequently released.  Neither of them had any empathy for women and both of them were psychopaths.  But apart from that, they were both fairly decent blokes, if a bit prone to punching you in the face when you disagreed with them.

And they seem to have become very close mates at a time when Savile was above suspicion.  Very close indeed.  How close to Jimmy’s flat was one of the victims found?

Jimmy was somehow appointed to head a group responsible for reorganising the management of Broadmoor, even though he had no demonstrable skills in anything apart from beating people up in nightclubs and talking nonsense on television.  He even had his own keys to the psychiatric hospital where people like Peter Sutcliffe lived, and the two of them soon became close friends, or perhaps they were already good buddies. He even brought Frank Bruno into the hospital to meet the Ripper, his good friend and they all got on like the best of friends, although Frank is reported to have flinched when Sutcliffe shook his hand.  What a shame Frank didn’t do what he was known best for.  He’s an all-round decent guy who was obviously conned by the pervert into providing a photo opportunity.

Some time back, I compared Jimmy Savile to Father Brendan Smyth, but the way the British investigation is going, I might well find myself comparing him to an even worse monster.



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Media Sexual abuse

Gary Glitter Arrested in Jimmy Savile Inquiry. BBC Under Scrutiny

I see Gary Glitter has been arrested on suspicion of sex abuse.  Isn’t that like arresting John Travolta on suspicion of over-eating?

Seriously now, if you’re going to investigate the activities of a dead pervert like Jimmy Savile, and if said dead perv happened to hang around with one Paul Gadd, would you not, as a conscientious Plod, arrest the elderly former glam rocker?

I would, and what’s more, I’d batter him around the head with a truncheon on general principle — not because I think he was kiddy-fiddling, but because his face annoys me and always did.  And because I think he was probably kiddy-fiddling.

He’s a fucking pervert.

Sorry about that if you happen to be a member of the politically-correct community, but that’s what he is.  A fucking pervert.

There’s no other way to describe someone who gets his kicks out of child porn, and yes, I know that some people will accuse me of defaming him, but in order to take a defamation case, it’s first necessary to have a reputation to defend, so I’ll take my chances on that.  Let’s go back to the point.  Why are the police arresting known perverts, and why aren’t they arresting people who allowed the likes of Savile and Gadd to abuse under-age children?

A few weeks back, I wrote a piece here in which I compared Jimmy Savile to Brendan Smyth, the Catholic priest whose activities triggered a gigantic convulsion in Irish society twenty years ago.  At that time, I didn’t know that Savile was a fervent Catholic with a Papal knighthood, and I’m still not sure whether that’s relevant, but I do know that the comparison becomes more and more apt as we begin to see inside the power structures of the BBC.  As it turns out, that enormous organisation was severely conflicted, to the point where it had two programmes ready to go, one of them celebrating Savile’s life as a broadcaster and the other exposing him as the worst sexual abuser Britain had ever seen.

The good news story won and the factual report was sidelined, with catastrophic results for the BBC, but perhaps here is where my analogy with the Catholic Church breaks down.   Why?  Because, the BBC has come come out with its hands up, even to the extent of broadcasting programmes exposing its own failings.

In the end, I think we’ll find that the BBC, unlike the Vatican,  is not so much a monolith as an agglomeration of egos, and therefore it will behave in a much different way to the clerics.  While the Irish hierarchy huddled down and hid behind lies according to their nature, the BBC will probably launch into an orgy of self-examination, and in the end, blame various middle-management stooges like Peter Rippon when in reality the contagion goes far deeper.

Let’s pause there for a second while I re-examine what I just said.  Let’s compare.

Two powerful organisations that promote individuals who abuse children.

One organisation goes into denial, thereby protecting senior executives.

The other organisation goes into a frenzy of blame, thereby protecting senior executives.

Maybe they’re not so different after all.  Maybe the same dynamics rule all organisations, whether they happen to be the BBC, the Catholic church, the people who sell you electricity or the CIA  and perhaps all organisations are amenable to the same analysis, once you dispense with the superficial cosmetics and concentrate on the essential characteristics that drive them.

For myself, I think the BBC will have to face very painful scrutiny as a result of this, which is a pity, because without doubt the BBC is the finest public-service broadcasting organisation anywhere in the world and we’d all be poorer if it ever ceased to exist.



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