THE LAST DITCH An Englishman returned after twenty years abroad blogs about liberty in Britain
Of morals, politics and The Guardian
For Polly Toynbee: a guide to due process, and why it matters

The Raccoon's Return

Watch Out! There’s a Raccoon about!.

Many of us feared that - her blog having been taken down as she said would happen if she died - that Anna was no more. I am delighted to see that she's blogging again, though concerned to learn she is still very ill.  
She has returned bravely, or foolishly, to the theme of Yewtree and the alleged depravity of Jimmy Savile.  We will never know to what extent Mr Savile took criminal advantage of his fame. He is far too dead to stand trial. We do know that many an unprepossessing young man has became a DJ or musician for the enhanced sexual opportunities. Some of them have innocently taken jail bait. Some have overstepped the mark and should take the legal consequences. In this puritanical age, it seems many forget the atmosphere of jollier times. And no, I did not just equate jollity with depravity. If you made that connection, you did it on your own.
Go watch American Hustle, as I did last night, and you will see a lot of people having a raucously good time. It's a good portrayal of the 1970's, including the music and the appalling fashion, but also capturing the social atmosphere. Only some of the people in it are criminals. Only some of them are corrupt politicians. Only some of them are Feds engaged in despicable entrapment. Most of them are ordinary people having fun (although sadly I don't remember any girls dressing like Amy Adams' character, Edith).
There was a lot of ill-advised sex of the sort people pretend to regret all their mature lives but remember with delight on their death-beds. I suspect that statement is true of every era in human history. Even ours.
Common sense suggests it's logistically improbable Savile abused as many as now claimed. It seems vanishingly unlikely that ordinary decent BBC, NHS and charity employees covered for him on the scale that would have required. It also seems clear that wicked people seeking money and sad people seeking fame have piled in to take advantage. 
It happens Anna had some personal knowledge from her time at Duncroft School that enabled her to throw doubt on anti-Savile evidence given great prominence in the media. She published it on her now taken-down blog and there followed much abuse. As is traditional in such campaigns, to fail to cry "witch" is to risk the mob turning on you. She took it womanfully in her stride.

In her latest post she makes some observations that raise concerns about this affair;

Nobody, in so far as I am aware, has ever been the subject of a libel action as a result of walking into a police station and asking that a possible crime be investigated. All the media’s claims that ‘draconian libel laws’ (they do love that adjective) prevented ‘Savile’s victims’ from ‘obtaining justice’ are total nonsense. What the libel laws did do was prevent the media from publishing stories without the sort of evidence that would stand up in a court of law.

Even more controversially, she asks this question; 

The ‘accused’ fall into one of three categories; right wing comedians, disc jockeys and those who unwisely raised their heads above the parapet to comment on the Yewtree progress. Now the music business has since the 60s been a major employer of the black community – and yet they are strangely unrepresented in the crop of ‘he was a monster but I was too scared to speak out before’ arrests. What is it that unites them? Are we to believe that no left wing comic, or black disc jockey, or black musician come to that, has ever had any contact with a young girl that she feels in hindsight was abusive?

It may be rash of her to write it in modern Britain. She will now attract a different, larger, and more violent mob but does she not have a point?

I am not one for conspiracy theories. Most people are too incompetent to organise a conspiracy or, having pulled one off, to keep it secret. Yet is it really too cynical to suspect that, amid the genuine distress of real victims, the lies of the compensation-seekers and the histrionics of the attention-famished, some scores are being settled?