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Posts Tagged ‘consensual crime’

Fundamental[ly]…policing [is]…a state institution that’s predicated on the use of violence to fix problems.  –  Alex Vitale

What Were You All Waiting For? 

Is the ACLU finally beginning to do the right thing, at long last?

Sex workers aren’t always a part of [amateurs’] conversation about police brutality, but they should be.  Police regularly target, harass, and assault sex workers or people they think are sex workers…[and] usually get away with the abuse because sex workers fear being arrested if they report. If we lived in a world that didn’t criminalize sex work, sex workers could better protect themselves and seek justice when they are harmed.  Protecting sex workers from police violence is just one of the reasons we need to decriminalize sex work…

To Molest and Rape

A murderer is also a rapist.  Gee, what a surprise:

…one of three white officers accused in the death of Breonna Taylor…[also molested at least] two women [in the past.  Brett Hankinson]…is…a dirty cop [who has also carried out] vendetta[s by] arrest[ing people he dislikes on trumped-up charges]…the more recent sexual assault…[was] against…a woman [named]…Margo Borders w[ho reported that Hankinson]…”drove me home [from a bar] in uniform, in his marked car, invited himself into my apartment and sexually assaulted me while I was unconscious”…In the second instance…Emily Terry…”began walking home from a bar intoxicated.  A [cop] pulled up next to me and offered me a ride home…He began making sexual advances towards me…As soon as he pulled up to my apartment building, I got out of the car and ran to the back”…

Pyrrhic Victory (#903) 

Amazon wants to have its cake and eat it too:

We’re implementing a one-year moratorium on police use of Amazon’s facial recognition technology.  We will continue to allow organizations like Thorn, the International Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and Marinus Analytics to use Amazon Rekognition to [persecute sex workers] and [pass the information on to the cops]…

In other words, Amazon is adopting a cosmetic ban in order to take advantage of the anti-cop zeitgeist while simultaneously profiting from helping notorious fascist anti-sex organizations to persecute sex workers and pass the information along to their pig buddies.

Silver Lining

Another sign that the moral panic may be dying:

For the second year in a row, the number of federal human trafficking cases…has dropped after almost two decades of increases…Overall, federal p[er]secutions of [people using the excuse of] human traffick[ing] have dropped by about a third since 2017…The decrease came entirely from a drop in prosecutions of sex trafficking…which has consistently made up the majority of federal human trafficking prosecutions since the TVPA was enacted.  The number of labor trafficking cases has remained roughly the same, [because unike “sex trafficking” they are based in reality]…The number of new sex trafficking cases, meanwhile, dropped from 207 in 2017 to just 136 filed in 2019…

Working From Home (#1045)

Moloch (#1047) 

Contrast with Oregon and other states which are finally moving to protect students from police violence:

…thousands of small children who are led out of schools in handcuffs every year around the country.  Juvenile arrests in Florida have been steadily declining over the last decade, as they have been more generally across the U.S., but…the state embarked on an aggressive plan to “harden” its…[treatment of students], including putting at least one [armed, dangerous thug] in every K-12 school in the state…[the result is that] students, especially minorities and those with disabilities, are now bearing the brunt of new zero tolerance policies and heavy-handed discipline…In Minneapolis…the school board recently voted in favor of…ending a $1 million [cash cow for]…city police.  Mayor Ted Wheeler of Portland, Oregon, announced…that he would disband the city’s school [pig herd]…Other states and cities appear to be considering similar measures.  [But] in Florida [police violence against students] increased…20%…[and] there’s been a spike in the use of involuntary psychiatric commitments against kids…thanks to an existing Florida…that gives police authority to temporarily lock up both children and adults against their will…

The Cop Myth (#1047)

Alex Vitale on what abolishing police would actually look like:

Five years ago, in the wake of the murders of Mike Brown and Eric Garner and Tamir Rice, we were told, “Don’t worry, we’re going to fix it. We’re going to give the police implicit bias training.  We’re going to hold some community police encounter sessions.  We’re gonna buy some body cameras”…what we often refer to as “procedural reforms”…[were] going to magically fix the problem.  But…the problem of overpolicing remains…Procedural justice folks…want to restore the public’s trust in the police…But this ignores the question of what they are policing, and whether they should be policing it.  We have [millions of] low-level arrests in the United States every year and most of them are completely pointless.  It is just a huge level of harassment meted out almost exclusively on the poorest and most marginal communities in our society…[true police reform must] go…hand in hand with decriminalizing sex work, drugs, homelessness, mental illness.  We don’t really need a vice unit, we need a system of legalized sex work that’s regulated just like any other business.  We don’t need school police, we need counselors and restorative justice programs.  We don’t need police homeless outreach units, we need supportive housing, community based drop-in centers, social workers…

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The most popular current excuse for expanding the police state and destroying civil liberties is “the pandemic”.

Before that it was “sex trafficking”.

Before that it was “terrorism”.

Before that it was “crime”.

Before that it was “drugs”.

Before that it was “communism”.

Before that it was…

How many times will you let them fool you?

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Governmental mechanisms to frame policy based on lies are not uncommon.  –  Laura Agustín

The Naked Anthropologist

Dr. Laura Agustín on “sex trafficking” snake oil:

Swindle, chicanery, skullduggery, con.  There’s no one perfect word to describe how trafficking came to be hailed as one of the great problems of our time.  Excess in rhetoric has known no bounds, with campaigners saying theirs is the new civil-rights movement and claiming there are more people in slavery today than at any time in human history, amongst other hyperbole.  And there was me thinking it was about folks wanting to leave home to see if things might be better elsewhere…I was asking reasonable questions about a social phenomenon and refused to be fobbed off with explanations that made no sense.  My trajectory as a thinker happened to coincide with a piece of governmental legerdemain that switched the topic of conversation from human mobility and migration to organized crime, like peas in a shell game…

Shame, Shame (#649)

Gee, who could’ve anticipated draconian “revenge porn” laws would be used this way (except all the free speech activists who have opposed them for years)?

Bethany Austin did nothing society would reasonably call wrong.  She received, without asking, sexually explicit images that her fiancé’s paramour sent to a shared cloud account.  She quietly called off the engagement…[and] her former fiancé [responded by] spread[ing] a hurtful and untrue rumor that he had ended the relationship because Ms. Austin was crazy and refused to cook and clean for him.  To clear her good name, Ms. Austin wrote a letter to her friends and family explaining what really happened.  She attached some of the images as proof.  Now the ex‐​fiancé and his paramour are using Illinois’s “revenge porn” law to punish her for speaking, and the state is happily obliging…The trial court found the law unconstitutional, but the Illinois Supreme Court reversed.  Cato, joined by DKT Liberty Project, has filed an amicus brief supporting Ms. Austin’s petition to the U.S. Supreme Court…

I Spy (#1001)

When it comes to mass surveillance, fascism beats communism hands down:

Google will use its mammoth collection of mobile location data to [spy on] people across the globe [to see whether they are obeying] government [orders] to remain at home [until politicians deign to let them out again]…or are venturing out to [live their lives]…Google will provide county-level percentages that are updated every few days, but summarized in a way that the company [claims] will not reveal any individual’s travels [until politicians demand such information…

A Moral Cancer (#1002)

Crypto-moralists always pretend their lust to ban things is about “health” or “safety”:

With the economy tanking and families locked together because of stay-at-home orders…domestic violence rates appear to be soaring.  This requires an urgent response:  States should immediately order the closures of liquor stores.  They can reopen when [politicians declare that] home isolation is no longer needed…

Like Houses (#1025)

And guess who gets to declare that an “emergency” exists?

California Gov. Gavin Newsom thinks that [the] right [to self-defense]…is…”nonessential”…a…decision…which allowed Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva to unilaterally ban the sale of firearms and ammunition…Villanueva…[was forced to] rescind…his ban…[in the face of a lawsuit and]…new federal guidelines.  New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy…[and] Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf [made similar defeated attempts]…their reluctance to respect [Constitutional rights does]…not bode well for civil liberties at a time when many people seem to think that fighting the pandemic trumps all other concerns…Cornell law professor Michael Dorf argued…Congress should suspend the writ of habeas corpus…[so] people [can be indefinitely] detained by the government…[and a recent poll showed] sizable majorities of [useful idiots]…favored confining people to their homes, [caging] sick people…government takeovers of businesses, [enslavement] of health care workers…and even criminalizing [speech that the government disapproves of]…

Like Houses (#1027)

Oh Maggie, you’re paranoid; this is about keeping people SAFE!

Under a motion passed by the city council in Laredo, Texas…residents…face a fine of up to $1,000 for not wearing some form of covering on their nose and mouth [until politicians declare] the coronavirus outbreak [over]…all residents over the age of 5 are required to have their nose and mouth covered when entering public buildings, using public transportation and when pumping gas…residents will also be required to adhere to a daily curfew or possibly face a fine or jail time…the curfew…lasts from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m…and may only leave for…work…[if they have a permission slip] from their employer…

It’s not about expanding the police state at all!

…New York [cops] arrested three people in Brooklyn…after they allegedly “failed to maintain social distancing”…despite [politicians] promising that those disregarding the lockdown would face fines at most…the individuals [were]…charged with obstructing governmental administration, unlawful assembly, and disorderly conduct…one…woman…[was mobbed by pigs] wearing no masks…[who] pepper-sprayed [her and her boyfriend]…she…was…then [locked in a filthy cage]…with two dozen other women for the next 36 hours.  Only women who already had masks when they were arrested were allowed to keep them…The woman was…[fired] because [her employer]…fears she was exposed to the virus while in [the disgusting, unsanitary cage]…

Government officials can be trusted not to take it too far!

Louisville residents [accused of]…contact with coronavirus patients [whom cops also accuse of] refus[ing] to isolate themselves are being [forced] to wear ankle [monitor] bracelets…there are [four] known cases so far…

Social Distancing (#1028)

American anti-sex work attitudes have slowly caught on in Japan:

Advocates for bar hostesses and [other] sex workers have urged the government to reconsider its exclusion of them from compensation for parents unable to work because of school closures, noting they are among the most vulnerable members of society.  A support group for such workers submitted…a letter asking the government not to discriminate by occupation and to protect the lives of all families as the coronavirus takes its toll on the Japanese economy…

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If you don’t follow me on Twitter, you’ve missed some of my musings on the pandemic, the panic surrounding it, and the police state expansion it’s being used an excuse for. Here are a few choice examples:

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What we need now more than ever is for those of you who aren’t sex workers to amplify our voices and support our cause.  –  “More Than Ever

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you already know that in the past two years, the tide of sex worker rights has completely turned.  The government’s violent suppression of sex workers has, instead of winning more support for bigotry, instead turned a majority of Americans against the prohibitionists for the first time since such polls have been a thing; a few politicians (even at the presidential election level) have begun to recognize that sex workers and or clients are voters, and that among younger voters support for sex worker rights is as normal as support for LGBT rights was among that age cohort a generation ago.  Even “sex trafficking” hysteria has begun to backfire; the wildly-exaggerated wanking fantasies spread by cops and “rescue” profiteers are so at odds with common sense and with what people can see of sex workers on social media, that even the believers are beginning to support decriminalization as a way of directing police resources toward the imaginary “trafficking gangs” rather than toward wrecking the lives of consenting adults.  Sex workers of all business models and socioeconomic levels are organizing and speaking out, and most people who aren’t dyed-in-the-wool racists are finally being forced to recognize how much more severely the consequences of criminalization fall upon people of color, trans women, migrants, and other marginalized groups.  Even mainstream feminism, which has been trying to destroy sex workers since the late ’80s, is beginning to fragment as more and more chapters of old-guard feminist organizations forsake the pearl-clutching harridans who pretend to speak for everyone with a vagina. The younger activists, those in their twenties and thirties, have got this, and they are more than capable of carrying it; it’s time for older activists like me to move into a more advisory role, working behind the scenes, writing articles, and going one-on-one with movers and shakers who are closer to us in age and need things expressed to them in terms more intelligible to those of previous generations.  So with that in mind, I’m going to be spending more of my energy in reaching out to those outside the demimonde in order to win their aid and support for our cause, and in trying to help them see that it isn’t just ours after all, but rather a vital part of the rights of all individuals to control their own voices, bodies, and lives without the interference of violent busybodies.

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“Decriminalise Sex Work” is not…an ideological argument any more than “Black Lives Matter”.  –  Empower

Torture Chamber 

Even journalists reporting on these abuses insist on referring to them as “correction”:

A [human being locked in a cage by] Alabama [“authorities”] died weeks after he was [savage]ly beaten by a[nother prisoner], beaten again and hog-tied by [screws], and then denied treatment by a nurse…a secret Alabama [government]…report contains shocking details about the death of Billy Smith, including apparent efforts to conceal the timeline of events and obscure the roles that [subhuman monsters euphemized with the Orwellian term] correctional employees played in his fatal ordeal.  Smith…was found dazed and injured on the floor of a bathroom…in November 2017 after another man…punched him in the head…[screws] then beat Smith, hog-tied him, and left him strapped to a gurney [where he]…lay untreated for at least an hour…bleeding heavily from his nose and pleading for help.  [Screws eventually] took him to a nearby prison medical facility, where a [so-called] nurse [shouted “stop faking!” at him and left him to die.  Hours later he slipped into a coma]…and…never woke up again.  He died 26 days later from blunt force head trauma…

A Moral Cancer (#618) 

When government loses one excuse for violently intruding on private lives, it will invent another one:

Suffolk County [New York] is proposing a law that would [ban smoking] in apartment complexes, condominiums, and multi-family dwellings…[because politician, physician and violent busybody] William Spencer…[fantasizes that] smoke can permeate through…walls, electrical lines, [and] plumbing…[politician] Sam Gonzalez is sponsoring the bill…“When I get the push-back from individuals that say, ‘No, you can’t stop me from smoking,’ I say ‘[Sure I can, by sending violent thugs to spy on you, smash down your door, brutalize your family and murder your dog]’” Gonzalez said…

To Molest and Rape

Just another typical and representative cop predating on vulnerable women:

A suburban New York [cop] is behind bars after being charged with repeatedly [raping] a woman while supposedly investigating a theft.  Peekskill [cop] Michael Agovino [i]s being held…on charges including sexual abuse and stalking…[after] the woman secretly recorded Agovino demanding sex…in January…

Tyranny By Consensus (#768) 

Why does California keep trying to destroy or drive out a lucrative industry?

The Adult Performers Actors Guild (APAG) has called for the resignation of the board of their own “mother union,” the International Entertainment Adult Union (IEAU) following the revelation…by…[sponsoring politician] Cristina Garcia that the controversial California bill AB2389…was “brought to them” by the IEAU…No prominent sex worker group…[was] contacted by Garcia before…the…bill proposal[, which] mandates…that…all adult performers, from porn actors and actresses, clip creators, webcam models, and dancers…pay to be licensed, complete a training program, and submit their fingerprints for criminal records checks…[it] requires…performers to keep their licenses with them at all times, and be subject to inspection at any time, including at their homes…the bill…[refers to stage names with the pejorative “]false name[” and includes “]human trafficking[” mumbo-jumbo and anti-migrant language]…The advisory committee who decides who gets licensed and who doesn’t would consist [mostly] of [outsiders, including prohibitionists]

Dutch Threat (#917)

The idea of just letting sex workers see clients in private, away from cops, bureaucrats and tourists, never occurs to the Dutch:

A special room rental complex for prostitutes or an “erotic centre” complete with prostitution, sex theatres and other facilities are the two most likely options on the table to reduce tourism in Amsterdam’s red light district and [enable] the s[urveillance] of sex workers…The [declared] aim is not to replace prostitution in the red light district, but open the door to alternative locations so sex workers can relocate if they feel more comfortable…Five different scenarios have been looked at and discussed with locals, sex workers and [cops]…

Only Rights Can Stop the Wrongs (#939)

Thai sex worker activists are made of awesome:

…The Thai Prevention and Suppression of Prostitution Act (1996) is fast becoming an orphan law running counter to the moral code of modern Thai society…It has reached the point where police must instigate the transactions themselves in order to make any prostitution arrests at all…Despite significant expenditure and 60 years of criminalisation, the Thai law has spectacularly failed to end “prostitution” in Thailand.  Instead it has filled the pockets of corrupt authorities, who use it as a tool to extort money from the country’s sex workers.  It has become an insurmountable wall standing between sex workers and access to justice and human rights…

Whither Canada? (#947)

A small but important victory in Canada:

A[n Ontario] judge has ruled that sections of Canada’s prostitution law violates the constitution in a landmark case surrounding…Tiffany Harvey and Hamad Anwar who ran an escort agency in London.  The couple was charged in 2015 when police raided Fantasy World Escorts…several [bogus] human trafficking charges were dropped [but] they remained charged with advertising sexual services, making money from the sex trade, and procuring for the sex trade.  Those charges have now been stayed as Justice Thomas McKay ruled that they were unconstitutional, a decision that is likely to be appealed by the [Liberal government which while campaigning claimed it would repeal the law]…the…decision is in regards to this case only….[but] will serve as a test case for higher court cases…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1008) 

Remember this when cops start bloviating about how they use the technology to catch “dangerous criminals”:

On the morning of Nov. 8, 2019, Sacramento [cops] arrested a…woman…for carrying an open alcoholic beverage and for [using a stage name] when they [accosted] her…because she was walking…on…“a known prostitution stroll”…[pigs] used facial recognition to [root up her government name so they could charge her with]…false ID…The [cop shop] contracts with a company called DataWorks Plus to capture and store mugshots…and…since late 2017…has been able to run its growing trove of images through a facial recognition database that DataWorks created [specifically for pigs]…

Stupor Bowl (#1012)

The Miami Herald and local TV news mindlessly parrot copaganda, but not the alternative press:

…routine bust[s] of…147 people for…simple prostitution in the 12 days before the [Miami] Super Bowl…[were claimed by cops and prosecutors to be “connected”] with…sex-trafficking crimes…the [raids] swept up scores of [ordinary]…sex workers simply looking to make ends meet — and, once again, [demonstrates that]…the supposed boom in sex trafficking that occurs around the Super Bowl every year is, in fact, a myth

The Mote and the Beam (#1013)

More companies join the herd rushing toward self-lobotomization to please their masters in Washington:

…the U.S. Department of Justice held a “public workshop” on Section 230.  Predictably, it wound being up a greatest hits of the half-truths and paranoid bellyaching commonly employed against this important law…Section 230 has never prevented the Justice Department from enforcing federal criminal statutes against online violators…[yet] U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr opened the event…by saying that “criminals and bad actors now use technology to facilitate and expand the scope of their wrongdoing and the victimization of our fellow citizens”…But [in reality] the statute…provides the legal framework that allows companies to actually try to keep exploitative content offline…Lurking in [his] comments is the schizophrenic proposition girding a lot of Section 230 opposition: that getting rid of it would somehow permit freer speech online and keep online spaces “safer” and more palatable for everyone…

Crying for Nanny (#1013)

AirBnB is trying to shield itself from the fallout of the hotel industry’s eager copsucking:

Airbnb is expanding its commitment to [fascist collaboration with pigs and NGO]…profit[eers]…as the hospitality industry faces a series of lawsuits [result]ing [directly from its kowtowing to fanatics instead of fighting hysteria]…Airbnb is coming up with incentives to encourage hosts to [submit to indoctrination]…Airbnb [conspiracy with] Polaris…[is intended] to provide [the company] a [shield from the many nuisance lawsuits enabled by FOSTA.  Ambulance-chasers]…representing [soi-disant] human trafficking victims want…a single federal judge to oversee multiple lawsuits a[ttempt]ing t[o profit from hysteria over so-called]…human trafficking [before it implodes]…Attorneys asked a federal panel to consolidate at least 21 such lawsuits pending in 11 states into a single case in federal court in Columbus, Ohio, arguing that the lawsuits contain the same basic allegations…About 1,500 [opportunists] have retained lawyers in the various lawsuits and as many as 7,000 are expected over time, said Paul Pennock, an attorney with the New York-based firm Weitz & Luxenberg, which is leading the efforts to consolidate the lawsuits…

Theatrics (#1016)

This is at least the fifth iteration we’ve seen of this same inane stunt:

[“Sex trafficking” fetishists from Covenant House masturbated furiously while looking at BDSM porn they openly displayed on a Toronto street.  Through their animalistic gasps of pleasure they moaned that] women and girls are just products to be sold — or rented, rather, again and again…The campaign strives to [indoctrinate] young people…[with] sex trafficking myths a[bout] warning signs…and…teen victims…[in hopes they’ll ignore the truth about sex work they can learn from activists] through social media…

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Companies…that made bad bets on the internet…[are] using…the political process to harm the competitors who built the products people actually want.  –  Mike Masnick

Anatomy of a Boondoggle

While some other states are trying to stop cops from raping sex workers, Florida is still paying them to do so:

A..[lying cop]…with the Pembroke Pines [Florida cop shop] used department-issued funds to get [access to women so he could] sexual[ly assault masseuses]…at three massage parlors…the [rapist] arrested] four women, ages 48 to 58, who are from Shanghai, China.  The women…didn’t have…[state permission to touch other humans and] are facing prostitution charges…

Welcome To Our World

People’s lives are just stakes in a game to these sociopaths:

Hillsborough County, Florida [cops pretended to be]…homeowners seeking handymen on social media to do jobs that required licensure.  These unsuspecting handymen would be lured to one of five homes, where [pigs] filmed them performing or agreeing to perform prohibited tasks like painting or installing recess lighting…118 [people in all were victimized by the badge-carrying] con men…Leslie Sammis, a criminal defense lawyer in Tampa…[said] “The real con men that are trying to trick homeowners are usually too experienced to get caught up in one of these types of sting operations.  So the stings tend to catch someone that crosses the line in an unsophisticated way”…[pigs] will hire a handyman on the pretext of performing work that doesn’t need a license, and then during the course of the job ask them to do something that does, like unhooking a toilet or laying some tiles…the [pigs] are [literally] creating a crime that probably wouldn’t occur otherwise…Cops and regulators have conducted similar [violent scams] in New York and California

The Truth About “The Truth About…”

Another of those nonexistent false rape accusations:

Prosecutors in California are dropping all charges against a surgeon and his girlfriend who were [wrongly] accused of drugging and raping a number of women…Grant W. Robicheaux…and Cerissa Riley were charged in 2018 with kidnapping, rape by use of drugs, and other crimes…prosecutors [fantasized that] the couple…[would] meet…women in restaurants and bars, spik[e] their drinks, tak[e] them to Robicheaux’s apartment, and sexually assaulting them.  Prosecutors [pretended] they had more than 1,000 videos of…women being sexually abused. But…Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer, who was elected after the case was filed, said there were no such videos.  “There is not a single piece of evidence or video or photo that shows an…incapacitated woman being sexually assaulted,” Spitzer said…”Not one”…Spitzer…criticized his predecessor, Tony Rackauckas, for filing the case…[but the] judge [is afraid to drop it because of]…politics…[and] Rackauckas voiced concern that his successor’s decision would [make his false prosecution look bad]…and claimed that…the…case [should be tried in]…the [court of] public [opinion instead of a real court]…

To Molest and Rape

Just another typical and representative cop predating on vulnerable women:

A [typical and representative] El Paso [cop got off with] a [mere] decade of probation [after brutally raping] a woman he met wh[en she reported]…a domestic violence incident.  William Ollie Alexander…will [at least] have to register as a sex offender for life….on…March 10, 2018…he met [the victim after taking her]…domestic violence [report]…and hours later…took her to a dark area…and [raped] her…

The Mote and the Beam (#777)

Some tech companies are willing to destroy the internet to secure a temporary business advantage:

…the narrative being pushed about internet companies and Section 230 was…manufactured…by Hollywood and other old legacy companies jealous of the success of new internet companies…the NY Times has a detailed article on…how a broad coalition of big, old, legacy companies are conspiring to punish Google and Facebook by convincing the media and politicians that Section 230…is bad.  The headline lists three companies: IBM, Marriott, and Disney…Disney and its powerful trade association have fought to stop the law’s spread abroad.  Marriott has asked Congress to amend the law.  IBM has a plan to [castrate] it…Disney, of course, is a stand-in for the MPAA and all of the big Hollywood movie studios…while Disney led the copyright lobbying charge in the 80s and 90s, the company leading the way against the internet…has been Fox.  But…Disney recently bought Fox…Marriott…has been screaming bloody murder about Airbnb for years, because it can’t stand having competition that actually offers better service…IBM…and Oracle…[don’t] rely on Section 230, since they don’t run consumer facing internet services…

Traffic Jam (#877)

The ethically-bankrupt Dominique “Body Fluids” Sepowitz has invented another idiotic “study” designed to find exactly what its funders wanted found:

More than two-thirds of sex [workers labeled by prohibitionists as] trafficking victims in a Hawaii study reported being homeless…[deranged fantasist] Khara Jabola-Carolus [was] co-author of the study [along with her crony Dominique “Body Fluids” Sepowitz]…The [so-called] study [was actually] a…survey [of questionnaires filled out by] 363…clients of state service agencies…[the designation as] sex trafficking victims [was imposed by Carolus and Sepowitz without the consent of the clients…

In 2018, Jabolus cried to cops when Sepowitz claimed she had received a mysterious text message about a supposed plot against Carolus’ job; she claimed the rumor constituted a “threat of physical violence”.  This is the level of fantasy and wild exaggeration that passes for truth in “Cuckoo Clock” McCain’s crowd.  In case you’re wondering why this drama is centered around tiny Hawaii, it’s because there is some support for decriminalization in the state legislature and the prohibitionists want that crushed.

Guinea Pigs (#881) 

Summer Stephan has for years touted her personal animus against whores as “concern”:

[Politicians] in San Diego…are [still persecuting adults for seeking consensual sex, now with] a new mobile app [intended to trick] the public [into ratting their neighbors out to the pigs]…District Attorney Summer Stephan [and other “sex trafficking” fetishists shared their fantasies of]…traffickers…lur[ing]…victims and…[brave hero cops.  Magic]al technology is playing a growing role in the ability of traffickers to…control their victims…Humans Against Trafficking…release[d]…a free mobile app, called Radlee, designed to [frame ordinary events as]…suspicious…the app will allow…parents…to [spy on sex workers online and rat them out to the pigs]…Roger Martin, the group’s CEO…[says “Women are much too stupid to place escort ads themselves, so] there must be some trafficker that’s flipping through profiles on Instagram and based on what he reads or sees, deciding whether or not to [traffick them]”…Martin’s organization…last year received a $100,000 grant from San Diego County…

A Moral Cancer (#978)

Buried lede: “The increase in absolute risk is so small that it is unlikely to be relevant for the individual“:

If you’ve been swayed by recent reports that red and processed meat isn’t harmful to your health, [crypto-moralists want you to ignore the facts and listen to their claims of a]…significant risk of death from any cause tied to eating two servings of processed meat or unprocessed red meat each week…One serving…equaled two slices of bacon, two small sausages or one hot dog…[or] 4 ounces of red meat…The new findings [were designed to contradict]…a…meta-analysis [show]ing there’s no need to reduce your red and processed meat intake for good health…

Crypto-moralists will claim that anything that brings pleasure is “unhealthy”, because it isn’t really about health; it’s about puritanism.  Since puritans believe pleasure is bad, they’re always looking for ways to pretend their primitive ideas about “sin” have some basis in reality.

Subtle Pimping (#979)

Cops watch racist “virtual reality” porn and call it “training”:

Last year, students from Cal Poly created a VR massage parlor [fantasy] to [entert]ain cops [with the misogynistic myth that] many [women] are forced into prostitution…In Houston, Texas, most…vice [pigs]…have spent time [masturbating to] Trapped, a [porn] that [lets them fantasy roleplay] 14-year-old Lisa…More than 2,500 [cops]…have [masturbated to this BDSM fantasy] at [pig] conventions…Billy Joe Cain, CEO of…the VR [porn] company behind Trapped…[also] licenses his…profit[able fantasy game] to high schools and middle schools as a[n indoctrination into anti-sex dogma]…

Across the Pond (#985)

Redbridge has a long history of harassing sex workers while belching up stupid “crime” rhetoric:

…a [gang] of 17 [highly aggressive pigs]…will be [harassing people with]…evening and late-night patrols, seven days a week.  Redbridge Council…set up [the gang with] a £320,000 funding pot…[to harass homeless people, buskers,] street s[ell]ers…drinkers and [sex workers]…the [gang] will also [spy on people in] Ilford Lane [using the favorite cop wanking fantasy of]…pop-up brothels…Mark Glazer, chairman of Redbridge Neighbourhood Watch, described the amount being [thrown away] on the [gang] as “ludicrous” and said resources should to be directed elsewhere…”They have been trying to sort out prostitution in Ilford Lane for years and [sending] police [to harass people] will not help”…

Crying for Nanny (#998)

The hotel industry is really going to regret having collaborated with fanatics rather than fighting “sex trafficking” hysteria:

A new lawsuit seeking $100 million in damages for two [soi-disant] victims claims the owners of nearly two dozen Collier County [Florida] hotels and motels are responsible for sex trafficking on their premises …Sharon Hanlon, an a[mbulance-chasing shyster, filed]…this lawsuit [to profit from hysteria as allowed by FOSTA]…Linda Oberhaus, [a rescue industry profiteer, claims]…“These are the hotels that are allowing human trafficking to exist”…The [ambulance-chasers] said as their [greed] in[creases], they expect to add more hotels and motels to the lawsuit…

Choke Point (#1006) 

Fascism in action, badly covered by a yellow journalist:

…If you want to PayPal or Venmo some cash to someone without any hitches, do not put the word Iran in the memo field…Jewish Currents…tweeted that nine payments to its staff and contributors had been held up by PayPal because the transaction descriptions included the term Iran in reference to a piece that the magazine published…PayPal, along with its subsidiary Venmo, uses a system that automatically flags keywords in the payment memo field that could indicate a violation…So if, say, you try to send a friend money for “drinks at Cuba Libre”, you’ll quickly learn how dense PayPal’s system can be when it comes to context clues…this leaves out a good number of illicit activities that the payment service could be facilitating…I sent my editor dozens of 1 cent transactions with different memo descriptions…PayPal…has a…laissez-faire stance toward weapons, drugs, human and animal trafficking, prostitution, and hate groups…

Not only is this moron spreading fake information based on an idiotic experiment (even PayPal computers know that a 1¢ transaction to a male Slate editor with the memo “blowjob” – yep, he went there – is not a genuine sex work transaction); his puritanical pea brain also considers sex work as in the same category as “Car bomb”, “Kidnapping”, “Nazis”, and “KKK”.  Let’s hope he tries the experiment I suggested to him (sending several hundred bucks to a female friend with “blowjob” in the memo) so his account gets shut down.

To Molest and Rape (#1012)

Give aggressive thugs power over teen girls; what could possibly go wrong?

A [typical and representative] Cottage Grove [Minnesota cop] assigned to [terrorize students at] Park High School has been charged with [molesting] seven female students and soliciting one…multiple times for nude photos.  Adam G. Pelton…[managed to rack up this score in only a year ending on] Oct. 4, 2019…Students [reported] that Pelton repeatedly [groped them under cover of non-consensual] hug[ging]…during which he would [grope] their buttocks…Most of these [attacks] occurred in Pelton’s private school office, which lacked video surveillance [because cop]…

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Poke any “Super Bowl sex trafficking sting”…and all you’ll find is a bunch of sex workers and their customers arrested.  –  Elizabeth Nolan Brown

Finding What Isn’t There (#778)

Because the numbers are so low, fetishists want cops trained to manufacture larger ones:

…a state Department of Justice survey…found that human trafficking data is “inconsistent across [Wisconsin]”…and more needs to be done to train [pigs to pretend that sex workers are]…victims…[and] children…[Attorney General Josh] Kaul said…”there’s…clearly a need for more training…so…we can make sure that [cop shops define eveything possible as]…human trafficking [so we can get more federal]…money…in Wisconsin…The number of agency heads who believe that human trafficking happens in their jurisdictions has increased”…Milwaukee has be[en fantasized as]…a hub for sex trafficking [absurdly called “the Harvard of sex trafficking“], in part because of a…[masturbatory fantasy about] “pimp roundtables,” focused on [learning how to walk through walls and do black magic]…

Comfort Zone (#847)

Sometimes the attempt to hide migration control behind the “sex trafficking” narrative is especially apparent:

Forty-seven people have been arrested in a major operation against a network trafficking people between Gibraltar and Spain…the gang kaked [sic] the documentation necessary for the migrants to obtain a visa to enter Gibraltar and then cross the border into Spain clandestinely, hidden in four-wheel drive vehicles with tinted window.  The organisation charged each Moroccan migrant between 7,000 and 8,000 euros for the visa, which increased by between 500 and 700 euros if they needed temporary accommodation…or transfer to another province or country…the traffickers planned the migrants’ journeys, preparing a complete file with false documentation…a plane ticket…a hotel reservation in Gibraltar and [instructions on] steps to follow and who to contact…

Does that sound like “victimization” to you?  This business is providing a service to people who want it, and the attempt to frame it as a “crime” against anyone but the State is patently absurd.

Something Rotten in Sweden (#908)

The public will believe anything it sees on billboards, no matter how ridiculous:

Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley…[is behind] a new public [disinformation] campaign to [perscute sex workers]…that’s called, “Take The Pledge”…[which] invites [ignorant conformists] to [jump on the “sex trafficking” bandwagon.  Propaganda]…will be presented on Clear Channel billboards and bus shelters throughout Alameda County…[so gullible yahoos] can [fork over their hard-earned money to] support [pogroms against sex workers and their clients and families]…O’Malley said the billboards drive internet traffic to the her office’s [propaganda] website, where people can take the pledge [under the pretense of] anonym[it]y and sign up for text and email alerts with [their identifying information stored on the prosecutor’s office computers]…

Micromanagement (#927)

They’re not only giving cops people’s info, but selling it to corporations as well:

DNA testing company 23andMe has sold the rights to a new drug that it has developed using its customers’ data…the drug…is…a potential treatment for inflammatory diseases…The drug is likely to be the first of many the company licenses…More than 80 per cent of their customers have agreed to their data being used by the company for research…“In general, I think it’s really good that human genetic information is useful for drug discovery,” says [molecular geneticist Tim] Frayling.  But he questions whether it is fair for the company to financially profit from genetic data that its customers volunteered for medical research…Commentators have already suggested that companies that offer consumer genetic testing pay their customers for the data, rather than charge for it

Rescued To Death (#977)

Once again Philippine cops “rescue” Chinese women from lucrative employment:

Nearly 300 Chinese sex workers and their clients were [arrested] in raids by…Philippine…Police…in the second half of last year…the managers were…charged with human trafficking…and…the…women…were sent to [jails described by cops as] shelters [pending deportation]…The sudden proliferation of Chinese prostitution is tied to the explosive growth of Philippine offshore gaming operators…that cater to players in China, where gambling is illegal…Teresita Ang-See, chair of the [authoritarian] group Movement for the Restoration of Peace and Order….[claimed] the sex workers were themselves victims…

Stupor Bowl (#989)

Virtually the only people who still profess to believe this nonsense are cops and politicians…and, apparently, the Associated Press:

To [profit from hysteria over] human trafficking during the Super Bowl, [pigs oinked]…that they need hotel workers, ride-hailing service drivers and security personnel to be especially [hysterical]…at the “No Room for Trafficking” conference [cops publicly masturbated while sharing their fantasies of young girls]…enslaved for sex…[at] the…Super Bowl…“We’re enlisting people to [build a fascist surveillance state],” said [Florida Attorney General Ashley] Moody…

The public recitation of prohibitionist sexual fantasies about whores and sports fans has become such a pathetic annual ritual, Liz Brown decided to gather a convenient list of articles debunking the tales.

The Widening Gyre (#996)

Amateurs’ fantasies about their value to “sex traffickers” are growing ever sillier.  This one not only thinks each supposed “trafficking” attempt is worth $100, she also believes in a magic contact poison that incapacitates in seconds and cops as magic angels of safety (note the similarity of their role in this tale to the classic “THE CALL IS COMING FROM INSIDE THE HOUSE!” instant warrantless phone tracing shtick).  The substitution of something of real value for the usual zip tie, scrap paper or the like is like an amplification of the “jar of honey” version we’ve also seen recently; this one also adds the visible lurking stranger of other versions.  It’ll be interesting to see if the car-marking ghosts start using white vans soon.

Dutch Threat (#999)

Dutch authorities keep pretending their registration scheme is intended to help sex workers:

A lack of [government] control has turned Leeuwarden’s red light district into “the cesspit” of Dutch legal prostitution [in the minds of cops and other busybodies]…prostitutes in the Frisian capital, often from other countries, are largely unregistered and invisible to the authorities making them…able to [avoid police] abuse…[and the] unsafe working conditions [created by the laws using the exuse of] possible human trafficking…[migrant] women can immediately start work in…Leeuwarden…[without jumping through hoops or having their lives snooped in by cops.  This de]creases the risk of exploitation [by government actors]…

Loose Cannons (#1002)

Florida prosecutors have apparently realized how desperate they look:

[Prosecutors]…have backed down from a recent claim that…Robert Kraft committed a felony [by having consensual sex with an adult woman] a year ago…[they] revised their position in an appeal concerning video…[obtained with] an unlawful warrant when they recorded Kraft and other people…the state is…contending that…[illegal acts by cops are actually] legal…[because] prostitution…Kraft’s attorneys cited two older federal court cases to make the point that “hidden video surveillance” by [cops] “raises the spectre of the Orwellian state”…

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When sex trafficking is somehow construed as the “natural consequence” of virtually any action, virtually no person or entity is safe from the threat of liability.  –  Alex Yelderman

Surplus Women

The Swedish model protects women!

[A sex worker was] found dead on Christmas morning…partially burned and stripped…near the pond of Font Merle, in Mougins [France.  Cops are]…trying to find out “who gravitated around this young woman” [in hopes of persecuting her clients or friends]…

Monsters

Yet TERFs want you to believe trans women are the dangerous ones:

David Bogdanov…is accused of second-degree murder in the [strangling] death of Nikki Kuhnhausen, a [Vancouver, Washington] teenager who had been missing since June…Bogdanov and Kuhnhausen appear to have first spent time together June 5 — the same day she last had contact with her family…Bogdanov [admitted]…that Kuhnhausen told him she was biologically male at some point after he picked her up from an apartment on the morning of June 6…He [claims that he then] asked Kuhnhausen to get out of his car…and…that was the last time he saw her.  [But] Bogdanov’s phone records [place him]…near Larch Mountain in east Clark County…[where] On Dec. 7, a passerby…found a human skull…[which] forensic analysis confirmed…[as] Kuhnhausen[‘s]…

Policing for Profit

Cops will never stop doing this as long as the state keeps giving them pretexts:

…St. Charles County [Missouri cops] coerced at least 39…motorists into signing over their assets in 2018…[the pigs] would lie in wait for a car [driven by a minority person, then accuse them of] committing a minor traffic violation…[the pigs] would then…direct them to a private towing lot owned by Superior Towing…[where they would] search the vehicle, all in the hopes of finding large amounts of cash..[they would then get a] dog [to bark, claiming that meant drugs were present, and give]…the motorists two options: they could go to jail, or sign their possessions away to the department and leave with a traffic ticket.  In the 39 documented stops, no criminal charges were filed.  A third of the targets were stopped and taken to the lot after midnight…nearly half of the drivers had either Hispanic or Asian surnames…Missouri…asset forfeiture laws…require…criminal conviction…before forfeiture, and the assets are supposed to go towards schools, not [pigs, but]…the federal Equitable Sharing program…[lets pigs violate state law].  A legislative effort to close this loophole and force [pigs to follow]…state law was defeated this year after the local police lobby quietly campaigned against it, calling it “anti-police”…

Torture Chamber

Just in case you thought screws restricted their petty sadism to the prisoners:

New York City has agreed to [steal] $12.5 million dollars [from taxpayers] to settle a class action lawsuit by people who were subject to invasive strip searches while visiting loved ones in jail…In the most serious cases, [screws digitally raped] women…or forced them to drop their pants and show their sanitary napkins…each person is entitled to up to $4,000 in damages…The city has also agreed to [tell] all [screws not to rape or humiliate people who aren’t prisoners]…[but] individual [screws] named in the lawsuit…[will not] be disciplined…

He or She? (#512)

Surprising absolutely no trans people:

Transgender children…start to identify with toys and clothes typical of their gender identity from a very young age, a recent study suggests.  And their confidence in their gender identity is generally as strong as that of cisgender children…researchers interviewed 317 transgender children, ages 3 to 12, and 189 of the children’s siblings.  They also interviewed 316 cisgender kids…The transgender kids showed strong preferences for toys and clothing typically associated with their gender identity, not their assigned sex…[and those] preferences didn’t appear to differ based on how long they had lived as their current gender.  Transgender kids also didn’t appear to have preferences much different from cisgender children with the same gender identity…The similarities among transgender and cisgender children were surprising [to cisgender people who believe in the tabula rasa doctrine]…

Amateur Night

This sounds like somebody who followed my repeated advice to older virgins:

Five years ago I wrote an essay for Salon about being a 33-year-old virgin…I wrote about how not having sex is not weird, and that if you haven’t met the right one, to not let bitterness and anger overtake you…I was wrong…last October I bought a plane ticket to Las Vegas…[did] the seven-hour drive to the Moonlite Bunny Ranch, and…lost my virginity…It was fine. It was fun…Sex is not a big deal.  Stop waiting.  Have it.  Experience it.  Enjoy it…It’s normal…staying away from sex all those years was like banning myself from the grocery store.  It’s not the end of the world to have sex with someone you have no connection with.  Also, we need to stop the stigma against sex workers.  I had a great time at the ranch.  It did wonders for me mentally.  I used to think I’d be ashamed if I lost it to a prostitute.  Not at all. I was given a great experience and was handled with real care…I’m dating now…and life is good…I [used to] let my fear of…doing it with someone I don’t care for block me from making connections with women…I put that wall up.  Life didn’t change.  I did…

A Moral Cancer (#790)

Prohibitionism is a mental illness:

[Irish] supermarket customers face a ban on using loyalty card points to buy alcohol under new regulations…aimed at [making it harder for poor people to buy] alcohol [under the excuse of]…health…

I Spy (#903) 

The US is following in the footsteps of China:

When Syracuse University freshmen walk into professor Jeff Rubin’s…class…Bluetooth beacons…connect with a…[compulsory] app on their smartphones and boost their “attendance points”.  And when they skip class…the…app…log[s] their absence into a campus database that tracks them over time and can sink their grade…campuswide WiFi networks are empowering colleges across the United States to track hundreds of thousands of students…Dozens of schools now use such technology to monitor students’ academic performance, analyze their conduct or assess their mental health…[only a few] professors and education advocates [recognize]…the systems [as] a new low in intrusive technology, breaching students’ privacy on a massive scale…[to power a Chinese-style “social credit”] system…[to] infantilize students in the very place where they’re expected to grow into adults, further training them to see surveillance as a normal part of living, whether they like it or not…

Loose Cannons (#982)

Florida prosecutors are desperately trying to wipe the egg off of their faces:

Florida prosecutors…[are now pretending that] Robert Kraft’s…two misdemeanor c[harges] of soliciting prostitution…[magic]ally co[nstitute] a felony [because they say so, thus ensuring that Kraft’s lawyers are highly motivated to work even harder to destroy the state’s case if]…the state wins its appeal of a lower court order [dismissing the evidence cops obtained with lies and an illegal warrant]…Observers across the country view it as a constitutional test that pits police powers to [terrorize consenting adults]…against individual privacy rights…

Quiet Genocide (#989)

Oh look, Western nations are starting to notice a genocide in progress:

Western coverage of one of China’s worst human rights abuses…has [very slightly] increased over the past year.  Satellite images revealed the Government destroying scores of traditional burial grounds belonging to Uighurs in northwest Xinjiang; drone footage revealed hundreds of blindfolded and shackled men being transferred to detention camps; and just last month, secret Chinese Government documents revealed how the regime was instructed to deal with the ethnic minority.  But [even] less…reported on is…a forced-living arrangement between Han Chinese men and Uighur women that…[constitutes] mass rape…[which] the Government claims [is] designed to promote harmony between the different cultural groups…The [Newspeak term for the mass rape scheme is]…the “Pair Up and Become Family” program…Rushan Abbas, a Uighur activist…[explained that] “The Government is offering money, housing and jobs to Han people to come and marry Uighur people.  Neither the girls nor their families can reject such a marriage because they will be [treated]…by Chinese authorities…as Islamic extremists for not wanting to marry atheist Han Chinese…

To Molest and Rape (#998)

Another specimen of the garbage the state pays to violate teenagers:

A [typical and representative pig Arizona hired to terrorize teenagers in] school…now faces multiple criminal charges [for molesting a teenage girl]…Yuma police arrested Bobby Garcia on numerous charges including [trying to hide evidence]…Police…receiv[ed] a complaint against [Garcia in May, but didn’t arrest him until December]…

Crying for Nanny (#998)

The hotel industry is really going to regret having collaborated with fanatics rather than fighting “sex trafficking” hysteria:

A case challenging FOSTA on constitutional grounds was dismissed on grounds that none of the plaintiffs…could demonstrate a credible threat of prosecution, civil liability, or redressable harm…Three recently-filed civil lawsuits have soundly refuted th[at claim]…Two of the federal  cases that will potentially implicate FOSTA were filed in state courts, one in Washington and the other in California…Craigslist [has] removed [both] case[s] to federal court, on grounds that 18 U.S.C. § 1595 creates a federal (not state) cause of action…The cases are essentially the same, with sections of their respective complaints copied verbatim…and…do not allege that craigslist knew anything about them specifically being trafficked…but rather claim that the website [should have shut itself down]…once [fanatics started spreading ridiculous myths and wanking fantasies about]…its ongoing operation “amount[ing] to a venture with sex traffickers to efficiently market victims”…This is a radical theory of liability, and…shows the Woodhull plaintiffs’ fear to be entirely reasonable…The third case…was filed in Georgia by an attorney who has also sued Facebook, Instagram, Backpage, and Salesforce, among others…the charges against Salesforce were dismissed due to the Section 230 immunity)…[if] the…[expansive] view of “natural consequences” [upon which these cases are based] is [allowed to stand]…there is no limiting factor in sight…

There is also another lawsuit in Texas.

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You often say “Never call the cops for any reason whatsoever”, but what’s the alternative when I’ve been burgled, robbed, or assaulted?  Vigilantism?  I’m sincerely asking.

The cops do not exist to “help” you.  That is not their purpose, and the great majority of crimes are never “solved”; most of the time the cops don’t even investigate them.  On top of that, there are thousands and thousands of cases of cops showing up and either inflicting violence on the caller or their family, or accusing THEM of a crime, or both.  We hear a lot about how rape cases often result in the victim being treated like a criminal, but in reality that’s true for all crimes.  If a cop takes a dislike to a complainant, he may decide that it would be both easier and better for him to accuse the complainant of a “crime” (usually a criminalized consensual act) instead.  In the US, most prostitution charges result not from “stings”, but from cops charging victims of some crime (rape, robbery, assault, etc) with “prostitution”; in this recent example, cops ignored a violent serial killer to try to charge his intended victim.  Examples of cops hurling drug or DV charges at crime victims abound.  You honestly think it’s worth it to risk all that so you can have the faint hope that the state will inflict vicarious revenge on the one who harmed you?  “Closure” is bullshit; people who expect to gain it by seeing the one who harmed them imprisoned often fall into depression when they realize it does nothing of the kind.  Nor is it a valid argument to claim that in seeking vicarious vengeance through state-sponsored violence, you are helping other potential victims; cops generally charge whoever is handy and pressure the victim to agree with their choice instead of actually seeking the true malefactor.  More simply put, when cops act to “solve” a crime at all, they generally do so by picking someone to frame for it and torturing the “evidence” to support their choice; your misfortune may be used to feed an innocent person into the carceral machine.  In short, there are very few good possible outcomes to calling the cops, and lots of extremely bad, even life-destroying, ones; before dialing “9-1-1” or its equivalent, you might at least consider asking yourself whether you’re feeling lucky that day.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

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