When he saw that something needed doing, he just did it

Monday, February 21st, 2022

Back before he became a movie mogul, when he was a young concert promoter, Harvey Weinstein was friends with Daniel Kriegman, who went on to an unusual career himself:

We subsequently drifted apart, and while Harvey went on to find astronomic success in Hollywood, I worked as the chief psychologist at the Massachusetts Treatment Center for Sexually Dangerous Persons from 1977–86. I’ve continued to evaluate sex offenders there ever since. The Treatment Center is a maximum-security prison where the most dangerous sex offenders are committed for observation once they have completed their criminal sentences to determine whether or not they can be safely released back into society.

The Harvey he knew was an entrepreneur with chutzpah:

One weekend evening after I had moved off-campus, Harvey dropped by the apartment I shared with my girlfriend. Our only toilet was clogged and we couldn’t get it unstuck. It was late at night, so we couldn’t buy a plunger, and we were in the middle of the city during a Buffalo winter, so we couldn’t just go outside and defecate in the woods. What were we going to do? Harvey looked at us with disdain before rolling up his sleeve, sticking his arm into the toilet, and dislodging the blockage with his hand. That may sound disgusting, but the point is not that Harvey was a dirty or unhygienic person. On the contrary, he was always freshly showered and cleanly dressed, if frequently disheveled. But when he saw that something needed doing, he just did it.

Arguably he had too much chutzpah:

When he and David were 11 years old, they had searched the Yellow Pages for bakeries that sold cookies wholesale. They then dressed themselves in Boy Scout uniforms they borrowed from David’s older brother, and went door-to-door selling them for a dollar a box (around $7 in today’s money). This was a lot of money for such young boys and they started taking cabs all over the city, going out to restaurants, and seeing shows. When a skeptical customer asked if they were really raising money for the Boy Scouts, they agreed that phonies were a terrible problem for the Scouts. The man bought two boxes.

Harvey’s parents, Miriam and Max (after whom the brothers would later name Miramax Films) had a peculiar relationship:

Miriam, a pretty, petite woman, filled her obese husband’s large plate to overflowing with spaghetti and meatballs. When Max had finished, he pushed the empty plate away and Miriam began insisting that he eat some more. He refused. Several times. He seemed to be aware that he needed to lose weight. But Miriam persisted. Finally, he gave in and ate another vast plateful. Based on this exchange, I assumed that this was a frequent occurrence. I also assumed that Max would die relatively young, which he did a few years later at the age of 51 without ever achieving the success he yearned for.


  1. Dan Kurt says:

    I am not a Psychiatrist, but are we not seeing described at least two psychopaths: Miriam, and her son Harvey.

    Dan Kurt

  2. Sam J. says:

    Dan Kurt says,”I am not a Psychiatrist, but are we not seeing described at least two psychopaths: Miriam, and her son Harvey.”

    Kurt, Kurt, shame, shame, these are Jews. You can’t possibly say anything bad abut them it’s anti-semitic. Remember the holohoax.

    Why in fact if you ask the Jews they will tell you that it was really the boy scouts fault that they sold cookies for a high price. They scouts were ripping people off, (forgetting that it was for a specific cause and not just for profit), and they were only gathering the money because…someone else would have.

    You know it’s a shame that I have to go on and on like this. It really is. If the world were just then every time the Jews started up their big gaslighting lying Jew blare horn machine thousands of people would be telling them that they are full of it. They are only allowed t get away with this because over time they have corrupted damn near the whole society with FED bucks.

  3. Gwern says:

    All very Eysenckian. Weinstein had an emotionally but not physically abusive childhood, which inspired a rage for achievement, which could not be sated; there is never enough for someone in that particular way. He had the physical health and intelligence to keep plugging at it, and high levels of Psychoticism giving him the fearlessness to punch through norms. Add on a hefty heaping of luck, and that’s how you go from college dropout to creating Miramax and revolutionizing Hollywood by making critical and commercial successes of movies old Hollywood execs were sure were too sophisticated and would not play in Peoria. Even his vices far exceeded that of ordinary men. (Sort of a lamer smuttier version of the Harry Potter line: “After all, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named did great things — terrible, yes, but great.”)

  4. Jim says:

    Harvey Weinstein did nothing wrong.


  5. Harry Jones says:

    Sam J: “You know it’s a shame that I have to go on and on like this. It really is.”

    Don’t know if you’re just trolling, but it’s fun all the same.

  6. Freud says:

    What is interesting about Weinstein is that his mother murdered his father in a Shakespearean way. Petite attractive JAP uses her wiles to kill the father by gluttony. Harvey and bro name their production company in her honor, giving her first billing. He avenged himself on slim and lithe shiksas, while living the life of dad by being a fat, though not lethally so, slob. Obviously a case study in how to make a sociopath by way of Psycho Mom

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