October 03, 2007

He lives on the same street two blocks east of me, and his house is reported to be the largest in Manhattan, and I have bumped into him at times—literally—but he is as disgusting a human being as it is possible to be and still be out of jail. But not for long. Jeffrey Epstein, a big-time Noo Yawk investment manager and multi-billionaire has agreed to plead guilty to soliciting underage prostitutes at his Palm Beach mansion in a deal that will send him to prison for about 18 months.

This is the semi-official announcement.  The reality is somewhat different. Epstein got his start when Lesley Wexner, the Limited department store tycoon,  took him under his wing and showed him the ropes, so to speak. Needless to say, there were a hell of a lot of rumours flying around about the tutelage, but what is certain is that Epstein ended up becoming a multi-billionaire financial adviser and close friend to Bill Clinton and Ghislaine Maxwell. Epstein flew Clinton around Africa on his private jet, partied with Prince Andrew and became a business partner of Mort Zuckerman, the real estate shark who poses as a writer and columnist in the newspaper and magazine he owns.

Once, walking down my street towards the park, we came face to face and I refused to give way and bumped into him. He protested. “In the past, people like you would get off the sidewalk for people like me under the penalty of death…” said I, evoking a Samurai custom.  He was appalled but there was nothing he could do, as he had stepped out without his heavies. A Vanity Fair article about three years ago hinted at sexual shenanigans but was not specific. I knew better but libel laws prevent me from spilling the beans. Now, according to newspaper reports, Epstein has made a deal with the Feds, and will get a few months in a country club jail. What is known is that he had under age girls in his Florida mansion giving massages and oral sex. What I know is that these girls were not pros, but daughters of trailer park trash parents who were brought to him by the pimps he employed to do just that. Tabloids in the UK have hinted that Ghislaine Maxwell was the beard while the two went on fishing expeditions. I’m not so sure.

What is sure is that Andrew Windsor is a fool. Clinton never had and never will have any dignity, but Andrew does represent Britain in a way, and should behave accordingly.

Students of Ancient Greece might pick up the signals: very young boys resemble very young girls, but if you need more details all you have to do is pick up professor Dover’s classic, Greek Homosexuality. What I find disgusting is that a billionaire or a celebrity can get away with murder in the Land of the Depraved , as this Proctor man just did in Los Angeles, and as Epstein has in plea bargaining a lousy 18 months. Here is Conrad Black facing years in the pokey for—in my opinion— enriching Telegraph stock owners as well as himself, and a Clinton-Maxwell-Zuckerman buddy can plea bargain massages with underage “girls,” and do soft time in a country club.

And speaking of Spectator owners, I was extremely sad to read of Ian Gilmour’s death. Lord Gilmour was the first man to write a letter to Conrad when Lord Black and I had our famous falling out over Marc Rich and Israel. In fact he also wrote a letter of support when I got into trouble and was sent to Pentonville 25 years ago. For drug possession, I might add. He never once remonstrated with me over my undying support for Lady Thatcher because, unlike so many hypocrites in politics, Ian Gilmour actually practiced what he preached. He was a high Tory and Libertarian and he let people be. Under his ownership and while he was editor the Speccie hit an all-time high of prestige and influence, and by the time I joined it in 1977, people were still talking about the good old Gilmour days.

My close friend was his second son, Oliver, who is a conductor, who like his siblings was very close to his parents. In fact, the Gilmour family was a strange one. For England, that is.  They actually all loved each other and got along. The only other one I know that’s as close are the Somersets. Ian Gilmour dancing with Margaret Thatcher back in 1981 is a picture that will always remain in my mind. There was no love lost between them but I never heard either say something scurrilous about the other. The worse thing I heard Ian say about Lady T was that she lacked a sense of humour. When I told Lady T that Ian Gilmour was against a fifth runway at Heathrow because it made living nearby hell, she looked at me, smiled, and said one word:”Good.” Politics would be a far better profession to be involved with if people like Ian Gilmour and Maggie Thatcher were still active.  Alas, things do not get better, although politicians keep promising that they will. Let’s have more Gilmours and Thatchers and fewer Blairs and Camerons.


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