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Posts Tagged ‘Louisiana’

Somewhere in the darkness, the gambler he broke even.  –  Kenny Rogers

Country music legend Kenny Rogers died late last week after a long, successful career which started as a doo-wop singer in the late ’50s; this was his most famous song, but he was known for many which told the stories of hard-luck characters (such as “Lucille” and “The Coward of the County”), plus his duets with Dolly Parton.  The links above were provided by Dave Krueger, Brooke Magnanti, Zuri Davis, Mistress Matisse, Phoenix Calida, and Furrygirl, in that order.

From the Archives

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If someone wants to protect me they need to ask what helps me.
–  Gali, a stripper in Tel Aviv

Rooted in Racism

Sometimes “trafficking” just means “bringing in brown people”:

Adil Muhammad…was…ordered to complete 240 hours of community service in lieu of a four-year prison sentence for his role in providing fake passports to six…Afghani Sikhs…Judge Martin Nolan [declared the humanitarian assistance]…a human trafficking scheme…but [admitted]…he had become involved after a family friend contacted him and asked him to do so.  “His motivation was some misplaced loyalty”…the six individuals were all from one family and had [paid facilitators the State defines as] a criminal group in order to traffick them…to Europe…

To authoritarians, loyalty to friends and family over the diktats of megalomaniacal racist sociopaths is “misplaced”.

Follow Your Bliss

The naive believe the government propaganda that “child predators” are creepy dudes who hang out at playgrounds; in reality, they are largely people in positions of authority over their preferred targets:

A juvenile probation officer…was caught with hundreds of images of child pornography.  John Russell Cahill, Jr…was viewing child porn [on his wife’s computer] in San Angelo [Texas on April 15th, 2019 when]…a Facebook marketing company [spying] on…[the] computer…using remote desktop software [saw him and] contacted [NCMEC, which on May 14th reported him to the cops, who then waited until] June 20th…to search his computer…Cahill admitted [guilt but wasn’t arrested until February 10th]…

Under Every Bed 

Population 136,885:

Human and labor trafficking are growing problems in Florence County, according to South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson…“human trafficking is happening within five minutes of your house as we speak,” said Wilson [while masturbating a pig called] Michael Nunn [who belched out that the reason was] “I-95 and I-20″…Nunn [in turn wanked]…Wilson [who panted that] a lot of victims of human trafficking don’t even realize they’re victims…

I’m getting pretty bored with quoting the same old authoritarian fantasies about highways, “criminals”, passive vegetable-like women, etc.  Does it show?

Science!

It’s been a while since we’ve seen the claim that disasters cause “sex trafficking”:

Employees of the Louisiana Department of Family and Children’s Services received [indoctrination] on how to [label people as] victims of human trafficking…[prohibitionists pretend] human trafficking can happen after a natural disaster.  “Traffickers take advantage of that,” [moaned bureaucrat] Leanne McCallum [with her hand in her pants]…

Rotting Fruit (#622)

Why are men with so much to lose so goddamned stupid about sex?

Ten women filed a civil class-action lawsuit…accusing one of Canada’s wealthiest businessmen…Peter Nygard, of raping them at his…mansion in the Bahamas and operating…a “sex trafficking ring”…Three of the women were 14 years old at the time of the alleged rapes.  Three others were 15.  The alleged rapes took place between 2008 and 2015…There are no criminal charges associated with any of the allegations…The lawsuit goes on to accuse Nygard of drugging women…[bribing] Baham[ian cops and politicians]…and…paying police to threaten to arrest them…[Nygard’s lawyer] said the lawsuit is the latest in a decade-long attempt to destroy his reputation by his former neighbour in the Bahamas, U.S. billionaire and former hedge fund owner Louis Bacon…[which] began as a noise complaint and has evolved into multiple lawsuits in multiple countries…

Even if the lawyer is telling the truth, Nygard foolishly opened himself up to it by skeevy behavior.

The End of the Beginning (#697) 

Maybe we’re about to witness the beginning of the end of these evil laws:

A federal judge struck a major blow…to a Michigan sex-offender registration law, declaring large portions of the law unconstitutional and that the law cannot apply at all to offenders whose last offense was before 2011…The lawsuit was brought in 2016 by a group of John Doe sex offenders, all of whose offenses occurred before the act underwent amendments in 2006 and 2011.  The first of those made it illegal for offenders to live, work or loiter within 1,000 feet of a school, and the second required them to immediately report any new email or instant message accounts, phone numbers and vehicle license plates to police.  Those provisions, U.S. District Judge Robert Cleland…ruled, are too vague.  The reporting rules…are also unconstitutional…[and] since the amendments are not severable from the law itself…pre-2011 offenders are free from the law and its registration requirements in their entirety…

Cops and Robbers (#813)

Since billionaire sociopath Swanee Hunt’s loathsome “bots” aren’t scaring clients away, prohibitionists are now making up bogus stats to pretend otherwise:

Sex [work] in a US city was [not] significantly disrupted by a [rescue industry] group that deployed decoy chatbots [to trick] tens of thousands of men.  During a two-year period, Seattle Against Slavery posted fake online adverts that connected people with chatbots that [bad]ly posed as sex workers, before [non-consensually] delivering [lurid BDSM text porn]…The campaign, which also involved placing more than 2m Google adverts [try]ing [to scare] people [out]…of buying sex…led to a 50% decline in [people interacting with the bots in the future]…Robert Beiser…[of] Seattle Against Slavery…present[ed] the [claim]s at the American Association for the Advancement of Science conference in Seattle…[lying that] “In a fairly short length of time…we were able to impact the marketplace pretty dramatically…it would possibly be easier to order a sex-trafficking victim online than to order a pizza”…

I worked in Seattle in 2015-16, as did most of my friends.  No, there was no “significant impact” on our business; hilariously, what these wankers appear to have done was taught a few thousand guys how to search for escorts more effectively so as to avoid unwanted pornbots.

Under Every Bed (#874)

Nebraska’s claims to be a “sex trafficking hub” are probably the most pathetic:

Former FBI [fantasist] Anna Brewer visited First United Methodist Church in Springfield…to [share her sexual fantasies]…about human trafficking…an estimated 900 individuals are sold each month for sex in Nebraska, with 70 to 75% showing signs of being trafficked… “People that look like me sell their children, people that look like me are sold for sex, so [distrust everyone you see and call the cops on anyone you don’t kn]ow…Drug traffickers are realizing that there is less risk and greater reward in selling a person than there is in selling narcotics”…She [moronically parroted that] the average lifespan of a trafficked human is around seven years from his or her first commercial sex act

The Course of a Disease (#927)

Israeli prohibitionists are trying to criminalize all sex work:

Dozens of demonstrators…took to the streets in Tel Aviv to protest…Police shut[ting] down three strip clubs…after an administrative order was issued by the state prosecutor.  [A spokespig oinked that] the decision [w]as a protective measure for women…[because] lap dances could [possibly] be deemed illegal [by powerful busybodies]…women…decried the closures, saying the move…jeopardizes their livelihood…

Safe Position (#988)

Why we can’t have nice things:

A grass-roots effort to decriminalize D.C. sex work [stalled] last fall, when the city council declined to vote on a bill…Now a national group wants to help take the issue directly to voters, offering deep-pocketed donors and veteran strategists to build support for a ballot measure.  But…local sex-worker activists who were pushing for the bill…want nothing to do with the group because one of its founders was accused of sexual misconduct during his time as a marijuana advocate…The D.C.-based Sex Worker Advocates Coalition released a statement…saying it would refuse to work with the Campaign to Decriminalize Sex Work, in part because it does not want to associate with Rob Kampia, the campaign’s political director…Melissa Sontag Broudo, the campaign’s general counsel, said the focus on Kampia loses sight of the women at the forefront of the organization.  She also said Kampia’s fundraising savvy and relationships with donors are crucial for an underfunded movement…“We need to put personal infighting aside for the larger goal, which is to not have people arrested for prostitution”…

For the record, I’d suck freaking Donald Trump’s dick if I thought it would achieve decriminalization.  And I don’t give a good goddamn who gets the credit in the history books, because what I care about is ending the ability of the police state to brutalize people for thoughtcrime.  I’m sorry so many others feel differently.

Harm Reduction (#989)

Alas, politicians, being exceptionally stupid creatures, cannot understand that the same principles hold true for all prohibition:

In November, Portugal will celebrate the 20th anniversary of…[drug] decriminali[zation]…Portugal made possession of small amounts of narcotics an administrative rather than a criminal offence, like the small fine one might receive for failing to put on a seat belt…Those caught with less than 10 doses of any drug…are seen by a psychologist, a social worker and a lawyer, and advised about treatment, harm reduction and support services…“We had freedom to do anything within the United Nations statutes on drugs, which means do anything except legalising drugs,” [Portugal’s drugs tsar Dr. João] Goulão says.  “In the end, we went as far as we could”…The results have dispelled the doubts of the doomsayers, who claimed that Portugal would turn into a “paradise for drug tourists” and give the young easy access to narcotics.  Between 1995 and 2019, the estimated number of addicts fell from 100,000 to 50,000, of whom 30,000 are receiving treatment…

To Molest and Rape (#989)

Louisiana hides another molester cop from possible lynching:

A [typical and representative cop] who was once named Louisiana State Trooper of the Year [for exemplifying exactly what cops are]…was arrested…[for] producing child pornography.  Jason Boyet…was [first] booked into the Tangipahoa Parish jail…[but] has since been moved to another location…State Police…[hid the] details…

I Spy (#1006)

Anyone who doubts that politicians are deranged megalomaniacs should be following this:

U.S. officials have been insisting to tech platforms that…encryption is a threat to public safety and that “back doors” must be provided for [pigs and spooks] to bypass security, all in the name of fighting crime.  Meanwhile, U.S. officials have also been claiming that China-based tech company Huawei can use secret security bypasses that are intended for [American pigs and spooks to] use…in order to access data…[for] Chinese [pigs and spooks]…The same U.S. government that wants tech companies and telecoms to create secret software doors that would allow it to snoop on our private communications and data is also worried that other governments will be able to use those same back doors to do the same thing…Any back door that allows [pigs and spooks] to circumvent user privacy protections will ultimately be used by [other governments] with [equally] bad intentions…U.S. officials are insistent that Huawei has maintained secret access to these taps since at least 2009…

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Being freaked out by a van is like being freaked out by a pigeon.
–  Lenore Skenazy

Torture Chamber 

Your government refers to this as “correction”:

More than two dozen Maryland [screws]…are being indicted for [beating the hell out of prisoners]…All 25 of the [perpetrators] are part of a special…[gang of screws] which is brought in to [beat the hell out of prisoners.  Other]…charges include…participation in a criminal gang [other than the official one organized by the state]…All 25…have been…suspended without pay…

Maryland apparently doesn’t like it when a gang of thugs specifically organized to beat up prisoners organize themselves in a different way to…beat prisoners up in a different way?

Bad Fantasy, Good Reality (#626)

The rescue industry loves its sexual fantasies about Cambodian brothels; the truth is more mundane:

Ahya…left Prey Veng for Phnom Penh five years ago to work in a garment factory after divorcing her “lazy and drunkard” husband, leaving her two children and one orphaned niece under the care of her mother.  However, she could not support her family on her salary as a factory worker.  Then, some friends introduced her to her current job in a…massage parlour…providing “what men want”…“People can criticise us, calling what we are doing a deviation in society…But, those people do not feed me and my family”…

To Molest and Rape

Even being dead can’t protect you from sexually-aggressive cops:

An LAPD [cop] has been [rewarded with a paid vacation] after footage captured by a body-worn camera [clear]ly showed him [grop]ing a deceased woman’s breasts…About a month ago…[unelected] union [gangsters who are allowed to control public policy reluctantly agreed to] a protocol in which the LAPD could randomly check video footage from body-worn cameras…[after] a body was found inside of a residence…[two pigs were sent to root around.  While] one…left to retrieve paperwork from [their pigmobile] the other…turned off his bodycam and then [felt up the cadaver.  But even though]…the [creepy cop] deactivated his camera, a two-minute buffer on the device captured [his disgusting behavior and] the…camera…was [later reviewed]…at random…

Interesting that they’re more willing to act when a cop molests a corpse than when he does the same to a living woman.  I’m sure he’ll claim at the hearing that she came onto him.

Property of the State (#756) 

Evelyn Hernández’ nightmare still isn’t over:

…El Salvador…criminalizes women living in poverty when they have pregnancy- or birth-related complications…Since 2000, at least 129 women have been imprisoned…abortion is totally banned, even when the woman’s life is at risk.  Some of these women have been charged with aggravated homicide and sentenced to as many as 40 years…Many of those women languished in prison…until 2014, when activists requested a presidential pardon for 17 of them and launched a global campaign to demand their release.  But…[in response] the Salvadoran state has…escalated…its criminalization of these women…For Hernández, the nightmare began in 2016, when she delivered a [stillborn] baby…she didn’t [even] know she was expecting…she hemorrhaged severely…and…was hospitalized for six days.  She was accused of aggravated homicide and…in July 2017…was sentenced to 30 years in prison…In December 2018…her [lawyers got her] sentence…annulled, and the judge called for a retrial…she returned to court [last] August for the retrial, [in] which…[she] was [found] innocent…But 18 days later, the attorney general’s office…[announced] it would appeal the judge’s decision, opening the possibility of a third trial…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#855) 

Will “PTSD” replace the thoroughly-debunked “sex addiction” as an excuse for bad behavior?

A Perth [cop] who [claims he] was suffering from undiagnosed post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) because of his job has been jailed for almost two years for possessing images and videos of “explicit and depraved” sexual abuse of [toddlers]…David Mark Dodson…was working as a detective…when Canadian authorities discovered he had used social media to send an image…of a girl, aged between two and four, being raped.  Australian [cops] then raided his home and found almost 350 images and videos of…girls as young as two being abused by adults…Dodson…[claims becoming a sexual predator] was “a direct result of his occupation”…

Well, I can’t deny that being a cop increases sexual predation, even if it doesn’t actually cause it.

Part of the Picture (#859)

It’s been awhile since we’ve seen the moronic claim that pictures magically “rewire” the brain:

Rachel Anne Barr, a [prohibitionist, pretends]…studies show people who regularly watch adult entertainment often develop damage to the prefrontal cortex…Barr [claims] “adult entertainment may revert our brain wiring to a more juvenile state…porn appears to be hijacking our neural wiring with dire consequences”…when a person uses cocaine, their brains give off a rush of dopamine, the “feel-good” hormone…

Yep, despite the sensational language this is just the debunked “dopamine theory”.  Again.  For those unfamiliar with the topic, saying “X produces a rush of dopamine” is the neuroscience equivalent of saying “X is pleasant”.  It means nothing more than that; it isn’t some scary weird thing.

The Widening Gyre (#961)

The more cops are forced to deny “sex trafficking” scary tales, the harder it will be for them to spread such tales themselves:

…[viral scarelore] claims that sex traffickers are putting zip ties on cars to make it easier to target victims.  But police say it just isn’t true.  [Scare stories] have popped up on TikTokFacebook and  Twitter over the last year, imploring women not to fiddle with zip ties they’ve found on their cars…Officials in Michigan…liken[ed] the claims to dangerous myth…[while simultaneously pretending that their own equally idiotic  claims about] sex traffickers [pulling screaming childen through the internet are true]…Celia Williamson, [a trafficking fetishist]…at the University of Toledo [added her own weird sexual fantasies about “pimps” and “grooming”]…In 2017, LaFourche Parish Sheriff’s Office in Louisiana debunked a rumor that human traffickers were placing white stickers on windshields to mark future targets…but…reporte[rs still feel compelled to quote evidence-free claims about tens of thousands of]…victims trafficked in the United States every year…

What makes these especially funny is that there has never been a single case of a woman or child abducted by “sex traffickers” from any public place, much less a crowded shopping mall.  But THIS SEX TRAFFICKING IS OUT OF CONTROL!

Disaster (#975)

A timid but possibly important challenge to FOSTA from inside Congress:

[Politician] Ro Khanna…is drafting legislation that would…call on the National Institutes of Health to study the impact of [FOSTA, which]…enacts steep penalties on any digital actor that “facilitates”…prostitution…Khanna [is] one of just 25 House members and two senators who voted against the legislation.  Sex workers, civil liberties advocates, and many others warned in advance about the dangers posed by [this awful law]…but they were overshadowed by well-funded lobbyists, pandering politicians, and a media more interested in easy narratives…than listening to those most impacted by the legislation.  Ideally, FOSTA would be repealed entirely.  But getting enough votes for repeal right now would be unlikely, so Khanna’s approach might be the current only way forward for reform…

You Were Warned (#976)

These predatory lawsuits won’t stop until FOSTA is repealed:

A[n ambulance-chaser is claiming her client] was sex-trafficked as a result of a…[magical] email sent via Mailchimp, an email marketing platform, [and] is suing the company…in Georgia [in an attempt to destroy Section 230]…Annie McAdams…claim[s] Mailchimp…worked with [Backpage] copycat site YesBackpage.com [in some way that was somehow fundamentally different from other email services]…McAdams is taking aim at Mailchimp with the hope [of a big payout]…she [also vomited out disgusting filth about] “send[ing] a message”…

Pyrrhic Victory (#979)

You know how wannabe “civil liberties advocates” keep bleating that the main problem with facial recognition systems are that they’re less acurate on dark-skinned people?  Yeah, about that:

…AnyVision, an Israeli facial recognition tech company funded by Microsoft, has been wielding its software to help enforce Israel’s military occupation, using the occupied West Bank to field-test technology it plans to export around the world…Microsoft[‘s]…funding…AnyVision…was a shockingly unethical decision by a company attempting to establish itself as a “moral leader” in the tech industry…[last year] Microsoft publicly committed to six principles to guide its facial recognition work.  One of these principles is a commitment to [making surveillance] lawful…for [fascist governments]…Following the [baclsh]…Microsoft announced it would end its relationship with AnyVision if an independent audit finds that AnyVision violates any of Microsoft’s [so-called] principles…[but] on November 15, Microsoft announced that [surveillance fan] Eric Holder will lead the independent audit

Held Together With Lies (#993)

While fascist organs like Time parrot racist government propaganda about how brown people making considered decisions in search of a better life are actually passive, childlike “slaves” in need of deportation “repatriation”, media actually owned and run by brown people are publishing articles like this:

Recent years have seen a huge increase in public, political and media attention…[to] “modern slavery“…understood as analogous to terms like “human trafficking”…the number of institutions involved in [profiting from]…this…has mushroomed, from a handful in the early 1990s to many hundreds todayMillions of dollars have been spent annually…while media outlets have provided…sensationalist…coverage…”Modern slavery”, as a concept, is a recent Euro-American invention.  It sprang up in the 1990s among [racist, prohibitionist] NGOs which found it to be an effective and attractive tool for spreading their [propaganda] and raising funds.  A key figure in this story is Kevin Bales, who established the widely critiqued Global Slavery Index…and…the [very] idea of modern slavery in the public consciousness…[this paradigm] constructs certain non-Western phenomena as problematic (such as the survival work done by poor children in much of the Global South) while excluding from concern Western phenomena (such as migrant detention centres) which are…even more troublesome…[most] poor workers labelled as modern slaves or victims of trafficking [and subjected to]…force[d “rescue”]…underst[an]d themselves as having consented to their work because doing so represented the best of their very limited options.  Rescue was therefore undesired and even abusive

The Monsters Are Due (#994) 

One can hardly blame the hoi-polloi for “sex trafficking” hysteria when “authorities” are vomiting up this kind of idiocy:

White van hysteria has hit a new high, with Baltimore Mayor Jack Young warning his citizens not to even park near a white van [because] people in…these vehicles are coming to enslave young women, force them into prostitution, murder them, and sell their body parts…When asked for the source of his information by the skeptical local reporter Vanessa Herring, he said: “It’s all over Facebook”…This incredibly thorough CNN report tracked down viral postings of the white van story and seems to have found the origin…a November 13 post by a Baltimore resident claimed she had seen two men in a white van outside a gas station who would not stop staring at her…the woman even wrote that she thought other people on social media were exaggerating when they posted about their terrifying white van encounters, but now that she had this terrifying (non) encounter of her own, she was a believer…stranger abductions are incredibly rare.  The number of minors (under age 18) kidnapped and killed by a stranger is about nine a year, in a country of about 65 million minors…David Finkelhor, head of the Crimes Against Children Resource Center…[has] heard of no cases of a child being snatched from a parent in a public place and sex-trafficked.  Not one…

The Cop Myth (#995)

41% of cops admit to beating their wives. Some don’t stop with mere beating:

[Megan Montgomery was] found shot to death in…a…parking lot…[months after] obtain[ing] a restraining order against her [estranged] husband, a [typical and representative cop named] Jason Bragg McIntosh…[who] resigned from the Hoover [Alabama] Police Department…[after he shot her in the arm]…on Feb. 23…Montgomery filed for divorce in May…[after which] McIntosh was [arrested] again [for attacking her]

Since the story seems deliberately designed to be confusing, I’ll express it competently: McIntosh & Montgomery were married in February of ’18.  They fought often and separated after he shot her in the arm during an argument in February of this year.  She took out a restraining order in March, then in May she filed for divorce and he was arrested for beating her up.  Then he finally murdered her in a parking lot on December 1st.

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The science behind marijuana consumption turning your tongue green is about as sound as the science behind the earth being flat or that lying makes your nose grow.  –  Erik Altieri

This animation from 1929 is meant to be a simulation of the evolution of simple life forms; it was called to my attention by The H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society.  The links above it were all contributed by the very active Cop Crisis account, with the exceptions of “horror” (Radley Balko), “trick or treat” (Phoenix Calida), and “headline” (Lucy Steigerwald).

From the Archives

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Surveillance technology…rivals nuclear weapons in the threat that it poses to the future of humanity.  –  Evan Greer and Tom Morello

Droit du Seigneur

Though pimps are not common, a disproportionate number of the ones who do exist are cops:

A [typical and representative] vice [pig] convicted of offering to [pimp] a [sow sexually role-playing a sex worker got away with a slap on the wrist and]…will serve [a mere] 90 days in jail [instead of being charged with “sex trafficking” as a non-cop would have been].  David Moss…of Lehi [Utah], was …[given a cushy] plea deal…to [avoid rape charges as well]…and [merely] plead guilty to patronizing a prostitute…

Under Every Bed

Population 13,255.  Seriously:

Drivers on westbound Highway 17 heading from Sudbury toward the Manitoulin turn-off will notice a new billboard between Nairn Centre and McKerrow that describes a Canadian law with a frank statement: “Buying sex is a crime.”  It’s a part of a [scam] by [prohibitionists]…to [profit from] human trafficking [hysteria]…”if there’s no demand then we won’t have the supply,” said [economic ignoramus] Natasha Falle, [who also vomited up a lot of ridiculous nonsense about]…13…years old…“These highways are part of a circuit in prostitution.  Highway 17 is a part of that because it’s so close to Sudbury.  If a trafficker is moving cross-country, they might make a pit stop on Manitoulin…we’re [hoping our billboard scares them away, like a scarecrow]”…

I honestly have to wonder sometimes what these ninnies’ fantasies about our lives actually look like in their narrow, frightened little monkey-brains.

The Rape Question (#895) 

Tech geeks create a “consent app” that is not only useless, but dangerous:

Stating that applications such as Tinder, Bumble, and Hinge provide too many options with reduced quality of interaction, the dating app Loly, soon to be available on iOS and Android, aims to “disrupt the online dating industry”…Loly removes human inter[ac]tion from the equation and instead relies on a patent-pending Heat Index to take control…generating a recommendation for suitable partners.  After connecting, users can then confirm each other’s identities through the in-built video call feature, allowing potential partners to ensure that they each match their profile pictures…All data are then encrypted and stored separately, meaning that the sexual preferences and personal information of users [supposedly] cannot be connected [until the pigs demand it]…When using Loly to meet partners for sexual encounters, users must first confirm they consent by selecting the option on the app and at the end of the exchange, they must again confirm that they consented.  If both users choose to use this option, the app can listen in during the sexual encounter and will respond to the use of safewords.  If triggered through voicing pre-registered safewords, the app will initially place a fake call from the app to the user’s mobile phone.  If there is no response on the app, the police will be automatically contacted [so they can smash down the door and murder both partners]…The practicality of this app response is…questionable…

The Prudish Giant (#897) 

Facebook is trying to become one of the cornerstones of modern fascism:

…The Bay Area has long been a sandbox for technology giants who are no longer merely occupying communities, but building and reshaping them.  In Menlo Park, an affluent, mostly white city of 35,000, Facebook…[funds] a police unit…to patrol the area surrounding its campus.  The bill comes in at over $2 million annually—big money in a small city.  This [increasingly typical] relationship has highlighted issues of policing ethics…“You create a danger when you have public servants being privately funded,” [said] J.T. Faraji, an East Palo Alto resident and founder of the activist group Real Community Coalition…

Hard Numbers (#912)

Another Australian state moves toward decriminalization:

Queensland has withdrawn draft laws from State parliament which would have increased police powers, shifted police and licensing authority coverage from brothels to anywhere sex work takes place, and allowed police to covertly film sex workers…police…in Queensland ha[ve used]…”entrapment-style tactics to pressure sex workers into offering blacklisted services“.  The proposed laws would have afforded the police additional powers to enter, search, film and [steal sex workers’] property…Sex workers continue to campaign for this process to lead to decriminalisation of sex work in Queensland in line with the government’s [claimed] commitment to repeal the current laws and decriminalise sex work…

A Broker in Pillage (#937)

Nobody will be safe until this odious, contemptible practice is recognized as unconstitutional:

Thanks to chronic abuse…by…police…the days may be numbered for South Carolina’s forfeiture system that allows cops to [steal]…cash and property of the people they arrest…Circuit Judge Steven H. John has ruled that the South Carolina’s civil asset forfeiture regulations violate the Fifth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights of the citizens.  Civil asset forfeiture…allows police and prosecutors to declare that any money or property owned by a [target] is “connected” to a crime…and…[steal] it for themselves.  And because this is a civil process, [they]…can do this without having to convict anybody…and [the victims]…have to fund their own lawyers…Local newspapers in South Carolina…discovered police agencies across the state had seized more than $17 million in assets across [only] three years…South Carolina [politicians are working on]…a bill which would…eliminate…civil forfeiture entirely…If it passes, South Carolina would join New Mexico, Nebraska, and North Carolina in completely eliminating [the vile practice]…

Across the Pond (#958)

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

After…police [pogroms against] street prostitution in Ilford, hundreds of flyers advertising the sex workers’ services have been dumped on the streets in recent weeks…[prudes vomited up a lot of nonsense about sex rays, “objectification”, and THE CHILDREN™!] and…Redbridge Council [bloviated a lot of idiotic nonsense while pledging to continue its pathetic, useless game of]…whack-a-mole…The council also said it is exploring legal ways of “going after” printing businesses who make the call cards [even though there are plenty of card-printing businesses on the internet, safely out of the reach of censorious ninnies]…

Only the mind of a prohibitionist could be so narrow and stupid as to fail to comprehend that people have bills to pay, so if violent thugs keep businesspeople from advertising their services in one manner, they will find another.

Dangerous Speech (#974)

The government keeps flagrantly hiding information in the Backpage case:

…Ariel Neuman, an attorney for one of Lacey and Larkin’s co-defendants, asserts that prosecutors falsely summarized evidence and misled the grand jury by omitting or excising exculpatory material.  Worse still, prosecutors poured gasoline on the pyre by “falsely, repeatedly and irrelevantly” alleging that the defendants “engaged in child sex trafficking and knowingly published ads for sex with underage children,” though the government did not charge the defendants with…sex trafficking…[only] facilitating prostitution…Neuman writes…”These are not minor details that the government got wrong; these are explosive allegations that had no place in the Indictment or in the presentation to the grand jury.  These are the types of allegations that can overwhelm reason…and lead to decisions out of anger and disgust, regardless of what else is presented.  The government’s conduct…warrants dismissal of the Indictment“…

Pyrrhic Victory (#976) 

All too often, evil arrives cloaked in the mantle of expediency:

Imagine showing up at a…concert and being required to stand in front of a device that scans and analyzes your face…a computer algorithm could then decide that you…look “suspicious” and should be flagged for additional screening…facial recognition…could…be used to track the minute details of your movements once inside.  Face scanning software could be used to police behavior — constantly scanning the crowd for drug use or rule-breaking…organizers [w]ould be forced to hand this trove of sensitive biometric data over to [pigs and spooks so they]…could pull people out of the crowd because they have an outstanding warrant…Industry giants like Ticketmaster invested money in companies like Blink Identity…who…marketed [the tech] as a convenient ticketing option to concertgoers.  But…artists and fans waged a grassroots war to stop Orwellian surveillance technology from invading live music events…Our campaign pushed more than 40 of the world’s largest music festivals — like Coachella, Bonnaroo, and SXSW — to go on the record and state clearly that they have no plans to use facial recognition technology at their events.  Facing backlash, Ticketmaster all but threw Blink Identity under the bus, distancing itself from the surveillance startup it boasted about partnering with just a year ago.  This…is the first major blow to the spread of commercial facial recognition in the United States…

The Clueless Leading the Hysterical (#982)

There has literally never been a case of a kid getting drugged candy in his trick-or-treat bag:

Police in a New Jersey town are [trying to spread hysteria]…after a substance [they claim they] believed to be heroin was found in a local child’s haul of candy from a recent Halloween event…[cops pretend] the substance was…given to the child at [one of those castrated] Trunk or Treat event[s]…police [used the non-incident as an excuse to vomit “if you see something, say something” all over children’s holiday fun]…

“Believed to be heroin”.  You know, just like cops routinely arrest people for things they “believe to be” drugs which turn out to be things like tea leaves, cotton candy, donut glaze, and even bird poop.

To Molest and Rape (#984)

Cops show you what they are every day; why don’t you believe them?

A [typical and representative] Livingston Parish [Louisiana cop] and his wife, a…school teacher, have been arrested and accused of child rape and the production of child pornography…photos…show the two suspects nude with an unclothed child [an actual child, under 13]…Dennis…and Cynthia Perkins…were arrested Wednesday, Oct. 23…Dennis Perkins…[who] was [a member of] the…SWAT [gang] is also charged with obstruction of justice after…[he] toss[ed] his cell phone into a river [when his fellow pigs arrived to arrest him]…

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The camel did nothing wrong.  –  Louis Hamilton Jr.

This particular rubber-chicken-playing-Asian-dude-with-deadpan-stare is a lot more serious than the one who performed Toto’s “Africa”; the video was discovered by Walter Olson, and the links above it were provided by Franklin Harris (x2), a reader named George, Radley Balko, Election Babe, and Scott Greenfield, in that order.

From the Archives

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The time has come to reject the canard of marijuana emanating from nearly every vehicle subject to a traffic stop.  –  Judge April Newbauer

Just a few hours after my last Links column posted, we learned of the death of Ric Ocasek (formerly of The Cars); this was my favorite of their videos, and one of my favorites of their songs.  The links above it were provided by Tim Cushing, Jillian Keenan, Scott Greenfield, Dave Krueger, Popehat, and Tim Cushing again, in that order.

From the Archives

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