Late-Night Mobius Nest of Vipers: Jeffrey Epstein, Keyser Söze

Since life is not as neatly plotted as a movie, we can be (reasonably) sure that Jeffrey Epstein actually existed, even if almost every detail of his adult life seems to be open to (mis)interpretation. Whether any of those details will be believable to future historians — assuming there are such — may depend on the survival of the term ‘Rashomon effect’


25 replies
  1. 1
    Mary G says:

    Jeez, second time today I kill a thread. Reposting here:

    Elizabeth Warren tells the story of her first time meeting Obama back in 2002 when he was preparing to run for Senate.Wait for the punchline. 😍— Trojans for Warren (@USCForWarren) August 15, 2019

  2. 2
    smike says:

    @Mary G:

    Third time’s the charm?

  3. 3
    Yarrow says:

    @Mary G: Thanks for posting that. It’s so great. She loves telling the story, too. That’s half the fun–watching her tell it.

    It’d actually be the most 2019 thing ever if Epstein croaked because of government stupidity and incompetence and banal ill-advised cost reduction decisions, not nefarious murderplotting.

    It really would.

  4. 4

    @Mary G: You spelled U$C wrong. 😊

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    Ascap_scab says:

    My theory is that Epstein is not dead, but that he was whisked to his own private island and that Barr has the blackmail evidence.

    #WhereIsEpsteinsBody ??

  7. 7
    oatler. says:

    “Sweet Mother ‘O Christ! What a nest ‘o wolves and vipers I”m sent to govern!”
    Gov. Nicholson in The Sotweed Factor.

  8. 8
    rikyrah says:

    Check the bank accounts of everyone on duty that night

  9. 9
    opiejeanne says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Hey Bill! Here are two photos of food that I mentioned a couple of days ago:

    Spiced peaches

    apple pies

  10. 10
    Mnemosyne says:

    I rarely agree with Scott Lemieux, but my take is closest to his. The scandal isn’t that Epstein was murdered, it’s that no one gave a shit about keeping him alive long enough to face his accusers at trial.

    It’s certainly possible that he was murdered, but indifference and incompetence would have had basically the same effect as deliberate homicide.

  11. 11
    opiejeanne says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: That’s really gorgeous. Makes me homesick for SoCal.

  12. 12
    Trump says:

    Trump killed Epstein or had him killed.

    The Trump administration cannot be trusted to do any honest investigation into Epstein’s death.

    I don’t necessarily believe this, but I keep hearing various radio hosts joke about the Clintons and I am tired of it.

  13. 13

    @opiejeanne: I left a comment on the apple pies pic.

    @opiejeanne: That was shot just below Griffith Observatory, I made my photog friend hike down there. There was a bit of haze, but the moon sure looked nice.

  14. 14
    Brachiator says:

    Trump killed Epstein or had him killed.

    The Trump administration cannot be trusted to do any honest investigation into Epstein’s death.

    I don’t necessarily believe this, but I keep hearing various radio hosts joke about the Clintons and I am tired of it.

    ETA. Sorry if this dupes. Weird browser issues

  15. 15
    Patricia Kayden says:

    The Trump administration was solely responsible for keeping Epstein alive. However he died, it was while he was in their custody. Blaming the Clintons or aliens or Elvis doesn’t absolve the Trump administration of its responsibility.

    Democrats should add this issue to their impeachment hearings.

  16. 16
    Gozer says:

    One of the best things I ever heard about the JFK assassination (may have heard it here, bu to can’t remember) was that the various gov’t agencies’ suspicious and often incriminating behavior during the investigation is not that there was some affirmative plan to off Kennedy, but that due to them outsourcing to so many unsavory characters over the years none could be sure that one of those actors didn’t actually have a hand in his death.

    So while Epstein likely killed himself it’s also possible that some freewheeling (and not too bright) hangers-on attempted something stupid and incredibly reckless. Shades of “these are not very bright guys. And things got out of hand.”

  17. 17
    Another Scott says:

    @Mary G: Excellent. Thanks very much.


  18. 18
    Chris Johnson says:

    Not changing a note. My take on this remains:

    Putin’s Russian mob thugs killed (correction: strangled, THEN hanged) Epstein.

    Because Epstein and Trump were a killer kompromat engine for the Russians from the 80s onward. They got EVERYbody, mostly on the Republican side of the aisle and the only reasons they didn’t get Clinton more than they did are (a) Hillary is smart and understood what was happening and (b) Bill likes grown-up ladies.

    And Epstein was fucked because the winds of power in Washington DC have shifted since Putin’s big kill and seizing of power in the Executive Branch through Trump. It’s enough of an overreach that the kompromat Epstein was able to produce isn’t enough anymore. Gloves are off and enough of Washington is no longer willing to protect its pedophiles and traitors, and that is a big problem for Putin (who has problems of his own at home: overreach again)

    And Trump is just as fucked if any of his truth comes out because he was the ‘businessman with deals’ side of that equation, feeding people to Epstein but also trapping them in deals with Russians that made them wealthy but indebted and compromised. This has a surprising amount to do with HOW RICH so many people in Congress are. They’re all fucking impossibly rich and Russian collusion has a lot to do with why: they were bought, or entrapped, or played in Epstein’s playpen.

    And I bet Trump wants to buy Greenland to give to Putin in a desperate attempt to not be fucking straight-up killed like Epstein. It’s not that he LIKED Epstein, he likes nobody, he has no friends. But he worked with Epstein really well, I think. And now he’s next. President Pence was the end game all along.

    And Pence is a MUCH better puppet. Stupid like Boris Johnson (i.e. not as much as he seems), bland, fundamentalist rightwinger maniac, prepared to do Putin’s exact bidding and play it perfectly straight without any weird outbursts or eruptions of ego. Pence is Manafort’s handpicked Trump replacement for when Trump dies… or is killed like Epstein was killed.

    But strangling Epstein brazenly to show how much Russian mob justice rules in Washington DC and in your own homes, Congresscritters, is so effective at making the traitors run scared that you don’t even need to do the followup whack right away… so Trump is left trying to pull some Hail Mary pass to appease Putin. I think he wants to buy Greenland because it has maritime rights and Putin wants to ship through the Arctic after the icecaps all melt. Trump, being an idiot, goes ‘I need to buy that! And then I’ll say, I can run it for you, boss, don’t kill meeee!’

    Yeah, that’ll work. Another cunning plan.

  19. 19
    low-tech cyclist says:


    Check the bank accounts of everyone on duty that night

    That was my first reaction too – that guards were probably bribed to not pay too close attention if he tried to kill himself.

    But it sounds like that would have been totally unnecessary. The prison was so understaffed that the prison guards there were extremely overworked – working double shifts, then sleeping in their cars because there wasn’t time to turn around and go home before they had to come back and do it again. Falling asleep on the job was practically routine.

    And apparently Barr was informed of these problems months ago.

    My one remaining question is, why was Epstein in a disaster of a prison like MCC? Who made the call to imprison him at that particular place? Why wasn’t he in a prison that would have been able to keep a good watch on him? Or was this the best they had?

    There might be good answers to those questions. But I’d still like to know what they are.

  20. 20
    opiejeanne says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: We had a big golden moon across Lake Washington that accompanied our drive home from the meet-up on Wednesday.

    I left a comment on your bad moon photo, too.

  21. 21
    Dev Null says:

    The most satisfying non-conspiracy theory I’ve heard is that Epstein accidentally whacked himself doing an auto-eroticism thing.

    For some definition of “satisfying”, obviously.

    I heard it on teh InterToobz. No links, sorry.

    (Apologies should this theory have been mentioned previously.)

  22. 22
    Dev Null says:

    Also too, via LG&M this morning:

    Epstein spent time alone with a young woman in prison’s attorney room.

    Money hath its privileges, aka “it’s good to be king”, aka “sux to be poor like you”.

    Forbes also reports that Epstein paid attorneys to sit with him in the attys’ room, as the attys’ room was much pleasanter than the cell.

    Mebbe just me, but this doesn’t sound like a guy who intended to off himself.

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    ema says:

    MCC opened in 1975. There have been only 2 successful suicides there, one in 1977 and one in 1979:

    [In 1979] Roger Stowe of Queens, a ceramics student who had been arrested on drug charges, “slashed his arms with a double edged razor blade in his cell,” according to the New York Times. A guard found him “bleeding profusely,” the paper said.

    Stowe was the second suicide at the MCC in the first four years of its opening. The first had taken place in 1977, when a detainee accused of robbing a bank with his wife hanged himself.

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