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Posts Tagged ‘Oklahoma’

We’re not going to sit around and wait to be prosecuted before we fight this law.  –  Skye Wheeler

Real People 

Even shitty and somewhat exploitative sex work doesn’t really resemble prohibitionist fantasies:

Elke Margarete Lehrenkrauss’ poignant documentary Lovemobil observes the Nigerian Rita and the Bulgarian Milena as they perform sex work in caravans (trailers) along a German country road.  The young women have escaped difficult economic circumstances in their home countries and are looking to earn money; they feel obligated to send Euros back to their families…they work for Uschi, a tough older woman who keeps them in line and advises them about pricing their services, but also appears to care for them, even as she chides Rita for trying to cheat her out of payments…Lovemobil deliberately keeps the sex acts off camera to focus on the larger issues of globalization, feminism and economic inequality that are part of this fascinating subculture of sex work…

Where Are the Victims?

Note the bizarre, stilted language used to describe a very ordinary-sounding escort service:

Jessica Nesbitt [of Chicago was]…charged with [various pompously-named]…prostitution [“crimes”]…for…own[ing] and operat[ing] a company called Kink Extraordinaires, which employed several individuals who engaged in prostitution…Nesbitt advertised prostitution services on multiple websites…and…also emailed her clients invitations to paid sex and fetish parties…In addition to activity in Chicago, Nesbitt arranged for herself and her employees to perform acts of prostitution in California, Washington, D.C., Florida, Indiana, Nevada, and Wisconsin…

Dirty Laundry (#452)

At least this judge gave the stolen money to someone other than Ruhama:

Money [stolen] by Laois gardai from [two sex workers was]…donated to two local charities by the court…the two [sensibly fled] and have not returned…Judge Catherine Staines directed that €3,410 got to the Laois Domestic Abuse Service, and around €1300 go to the Garda Youth Diversion Projects…

To Molest and Rape

Just another typical, representative cop:

A Miami-Dade [screw]…has been charged with raping a woman he was supposed to be supervising while she was on house arrest.  Yulian Gonzalez…paid regular visits to the alleged victim’s home during the course of his work as a case manager…Gonzalez threatened to issue a violation of her house arrest and send her back to jail if she did not [submit to rape]…Gonzalez rented a room at the Nexx Motel…and drove the woman there in his [pigmobile]…so as not to set off any alarms, Gonzalez tampered with the woman’s ankle monitor…

A Tale That Grew in the Telling (#754) 

I love seeing prohibitionists hoist with their own petard:

report compiled by the Department of Justice has revealed that the [Swedish model]…in Northern Ireland is not fit for purpose…“This report…shows that there has not been a decrease in demand for sex work since the introduction of client criminalisation…in 2015,” [said] Kate McGrew…”Instead, we have seen an increase in sex trafficking by 26%…In the north, it led to massive increase in advertising (on one site alone over 1700 new ads) and demand (in one jurisdiction by 134%) and a 200% increase threatening behaviour in clients.  In the south, it led to an increase in violent crime against sex workers by 92%“…

Once the government started defining all third parties as “sex traffickers” and then passed a law whose natural consequence would be increased reliance on such parties, naturally “sex trafficking” by their definition increased.  And since prohibitionists pretended the intent of their anti-whore law was to “fight sex trafficking”, they now have no choice but to admit the law was a “failure”.  Oops.

Little Boxes (#792)

A federal court finally recognizes what should’ve been obvious years ago:

Fort Collins, Colorado, decided not to continue its challenge to a federal court’s decision that a ban on going topless in the city amounts to unconstitutional discrimination…The city decided not to appeal the decision…after [wast]ing hundreds of thousands of [public] dollars on the legal battle already…[this] effectively legalizes [female toplessness] in the six states covered by the 10th Circuit court…Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah and Wyoming…

Given that the 7th Circuit ruled exactly the opposite two years ago (see subtitle link), a SCOTUS showdown is now inevitable.

The Mote and the Beam (#900)

This is much worse than the typical government propaganda such as “DARE”:

…the FBI is launching its #StopSextortion [propaganda] campaign to [convince parents] and schools [that teenage sexting is a]…growing problem [called] sextortion…[affecting] kids…as young as seven or eight…The [FBI wants parents to believe that peer “sexting” is actually the product of an adult] extortionist [who] finds children and teens on social media [to]…convince…to send a naked photo—and…the[n]…telling the child that he will send the photo to friends and family or post online…the extortionist continues to threaten while escalating demands, which can include…sex acts…

The FBI is intentionally representing a rare crime as the norm so as to give the federal government power over teen sexting.  If you thought FOSTA and the drug war were great, you’re going to love the “war on sextortion”.

Disaster (#935)

News about the FOSTA challenge:

Human Rights Watch and four other plaintiffs…present[ed] arguments on September 20 against the dismissal of their challenge to a…law that imposes criminal liability for online speech about sex work…FOSTA…’s language is [so] broad and vague, it could prevent sex workers and others from writing about sex work and posting about critically important health and safety issues, and it would restrict organisations like Human Rights Watch from effectively reporting on and advocating for the decriminalisation of sex work…FOSTA has [already] endangered [sex workers because]…websites that made it easier for sex workers to screen clients and to sell sex in safer locations have stopped sex workers from posting.  The co-plaintiffs in the case with Human Rights Watch are the Woodhull Freedom Foundation, the Internet Archive, and individuals Alex Andrews and Eric Koszyk.  The lower court [incorrectly] dismissed the case [a year ago]…without addressing the substantive claims, on the [pretense] that plaintiffs faced no imminent risk of prosecution…[but] in cases involving free expression, the appropriate lens is whether speech will be unconstitutionally burdened or chilled…

A Moral Cancer (#972)

Authoritarian idiots respond to deaths from a black market product by dramatically expanding the black market:

Walmart said…that it would stop selling e-cigarettes at its stores in the United States, dealing a new blow to the vaping industry as [hysteria] mount[s] over the health risks of [black market] products [which have nothing to do with the banned e-cigarettes]…The decision…comes amid a [dumpster fire full] of new [moral panic] about the potential health risks of [black market THC cartridges] that has [inspired prohibitionists to]…increas[e the danger by banning completely different currently-legal] products…

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We shudder to think what [a duck] hyped up on meth would do.
–  Loretto Police Department

Art Neville, the eldest of New Orleans’ own Neville Brothers, died on Monday at the age of 81; like Dr. John, the Nevilles were more an institution than a mere band.  This is my favorite of his songs, recorded with his band The Meters in 1975; you may also remember this hit about a New Orleans whore, which the Meters produced (along with Alan Toussaint) and were the backing band on.  The links above it were provided by Mark Draughn, Franklin Harris, Jesse Walker, Emma Evans, David Wraith, and Brooke Magnanti, in that order.

From the Archives

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It seems odd … to make…integrity of…intimate body cavities dependent on who it is that does the…penetrating.  –  Judge John Z. Lee

Where Are the Protests? 

A lot of editing was needed here:

…Portland Police [are]…merging [the] human trafficking [gang]…with its [vice gang.  Prohibitionists]…are concerned the consolidation will result in [fewer pigs raping and persecuting sex workers, but in reality the point is to have more cops harassing women and fewer investigating actual labor exploitation]…

Pride Goeth

We don’t see many good articles about “Straight Pride” events, but the ones we do see are hilarious:

Netflix has threatened the organisers of Boston’s Straight Pride with legal action after they listed the streaming platform as a “prospective corporate sponsor” for their anti-LGBT+ event.  Netflix sent a cease-and-desist order to Super Happy Fun America, the group organising the parade, which has several ties with…white nationalist organisations…Super Happy Fun America were ordered to “immediately” remove the Netflix logo from all materials associated with the event, with the threat of further legal action if this is not done within 24 hours…The parade organisers hit back at Netflix on their website in a post entitled “Netflix hates the straight” which accuses Netflix’s legal team of being staffed by “gay supremacists”…Super Happy Fun America previously tried to use Brad Pitt as their movement’s “mascot,” but were forced to stop following a complaint from Pitt’s representatives…

Torture Chamber 

Our government refers to this as “correction”:

Screenshots of a private group chat…show several [screws] at a Florida prison making [vile] remarks about an inmate beating days before a video of that [beating]…was uploaded to YouTube…by inmates using a [hidden] cell phone…the sister of the [beaten] inmate…and a Florida [politician] who interviewed the inmate in person…have [reported that] officials at the institution [are lying]…about what transpired and attempting to cover up the [flagrant] abuse…Otis Miller [is now locked up in a different stack of cages]…The video [clearly] show[s a gang of screws]…punching [Miller] in the head…[even though] he…is [only] five feet tall and weighs 140 pounds…the [screws clearly took] pride in the damage they had inflicted on [a helpless human being, oinking out such pleasantries as]…“That [inmate] looks like beetle juice [sic]”…“I want more lol”…[and] “Fuck him”…Department of Corrections Secretary Mark Inch responded with [the usual denials and bullshit]…

That Old Black Magic (#442)

Remember that witchcraft charges were once a popular way to persecute sex workers:

Two residents of the city of Gudermes were [arrested by cops in] Chechnya…for practicing…witchcraft…persecution of medicine men and psychics began in Chechnya six years ago, but in recent years has intensified…The detained women may be facing criminal prosecution…Sorcery and magic contradict Islamic dogma…but…the current campaign…is less connected with religious motives, and to a greater extent with comparatively stronger police control…believes Mikhail Roshchin…of…the Russian Academy of Sciences…

Other modern “wars on witchcraft” are taking place in IndonesiaSaudi Arabia (including online censorship), and to a lesser extent the UK (subtitle link).

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#684) 

This is the worst crime I’ve ever seen “sex addiction” used as a defense for:

A…son of a priest blamed a porn overload for him raping and killing a California scientist who vanished from a conference in Crete…Giannis Paraskakis, who confessed to the murder of 59-year-old Suzanne Eaton, [claimed]…watching too much hardcore porn led him to murder…Paraskakis…encountered Eaton on June 2 and…rammed into her twice with his car…he [then] stuffed an unconscious Eaton in the trunk of his vehicle…drove to a remote World War II bunker near Xamoudochori…raped her and left her for dead…Eaton — a molecular biologist at the Max Planck Institute in Dresden, Germany — was reported missing by colleagues after she missed several sessions at an Orthodox Academy of Crete conference.  Her [remains were] recovered from inside the bunker July 8 with “many broken ribs and face bones as well as multiple injuries to both hands”…cause of death was ruled asphyxiation…

License to Rape (#836)

US court rules mass sexual assault is legal as long as other wannabe rapists are allowed to watch and learn:

Early one March morning inside an Illinois prison, a tactical unit armed with batons and shields stormed two women’s housing units to round up about 200 handcuffed inmates and march them to a gymnasium…[where] they stood facing the wall for more than an hour…until the guards started taking groups of four to 10 into the adjoining bathroom and beauty shop.  There, they were ordered to strip.  Standing shoulder to shoulder, women on their periods were asked to remove their tampons and pads…They were ordered to lift their breasts and hair, to cough and squat, and then, finally, to bend over and spread open their vaginal and anal cavities…male guards [stared at] the naked prisoners…[throughout] the humiliating mass strip search…[which was pretended to be] a training exercise for incoming cadets. Now, after eight years of litigation, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit has ruled in a divided 2-1 opinion that the entire 2011 episode was legal…

Change a Few Words (#868)

Another good example of why “legalized” sex work is a bad idea:

[Violent thugs] in Southern California have conducted a massive drug bust that includes 14.9 tons of illegally-grown marijuana in one area…[the thugs also stole] 37 guns, multiple dogs and a honey oil lab at the properties in the Perris area, about 70 miles east of Los Angeles…[pigs raided] 48 [private properties]…and have…[locked] 27 [human beings in cages for farming]…

Oh noes, they grew plants without asking “Mother may I?” first!  WHAT MONSTERS!

Welcome To Our World (#888)

Not an attempt to control women’s bodies, no sirree:

Phnom Penh Municipal Court…charged three women with human trafficking in connection to a surrogacy business after they were arrested and deported from Vietnam…two of them are still pregnant…

Pyrrhic Victory (#915)

More on Amazon’s campaign to end privacy forever:

On [July 18th], Amazon’s [fascist surveillance] partnership with the Orlando Police Department [supposedly] ended, and…city officials [claim] it didn’t work…[because] the city’s technology infrastructure simply wasn’t advanced enough and didn’t have the bandwidth to support the artificial intelligence software on more than one camera at a time…Amazon proposed to outfit the city with more advanced surveillance cameras…since the cameras already installed downtown weren’t proving to be compatible with Rekognition, but the city [suppos]edly declined.  This failure rather neatly illustrates a reality standing in the way of a [fascist] panopticon:  extremely normal technical problems.  If Amazon wants to market a surveillance product to local governments, it will have to deal with the fact that many municipal computer systems run outdated software, that police departments’ cameras aren’t all high-definition, and not all the equipment is neatly networked with a…reliable internet connection.  Amazon appears to be having better luck looking to civilian customers to help it break into the police surveillance market…[by] hand[ing] out free or discounted Ring systems to residents, which allows police to…access footage directly from the…doorbell cameras using Ring’s Neighbors app…cities as big as Dallas, Philadelphia, Birmingham, Phoenix, and Oklahoma City all have joined Ring’s police program, according to a new map from…Fight for the Future…The map also lists smaller cities that have contracts, like Kalamazoo, Michigan, and Maywood, New Jersey…

Elephant in the Parlor (#926) 

Pederast politicians are nearly as common as those who hire adult women:

A businessman who [w]as a key witness in…Robert Mueller’s investigation now faces a charge of child sex trafficking in addition to transporting child pornography…Lebanese-American businessman George Nader…transport[ed] a 14-year-old boy from Europe to Washington, D.C. [for sexual purposes] in February 2000…Nader…[w]as [a] liaison between Kirill Dmitriev, a Russian banker close to Russian President Vladimir Putin, and members of President Donald Trump’s transition team.  Nader also served as an adviser to the United Arab Emirates…Nader was convicted in the Czech Republic…of 10 cases of sexually abusing minors and sentenced to a one-year prison term in 2003….[and] also pleaded guilty to a charge of transporting child-pornography images in Virginia in 1991.  The current investigation…began last year when images depicting child pornography and bestiality were found on his phone after it was [seized] under a search warrant connected to the Mueller probe…

Overripe

More from Liz Brown on the Epstein case:

R. Kelly. Jeffrey Epstein. Keith Raniere.  For more than a decade, each of these men escaped largely unscathed as allegations of sexual misconduct — sometimes involving minors — piled up…the recent prosecution of all three on federal sex crime charges…represent all-too-rare instances of “sex trafficking” cases that seem to involve real predatory behavior.  It’s a nice change.  In recent years, sex trafficking charges have largely been lobbed against sex workers and those who work with them.  In both the media and the halls of justice these days, the terms “sex trafficking” and “human trafficking” are often used interchangeably with “prostitution”…“Human trafficking operations” are all too frequently just rebranded stings…The Mann Act is a favorite for federal prosecutors wanting to butt into prostitution stings when there are no minors or evidence of coercion.  That’s because the law prevents driving another person — technically it’s gender neutral, but in practice these cases almost always involve a female sex worker — across state lines for prostitution purposes…In its annual Operation Cross Country, the FBI often ratchets up federal arrest numbers by conducting stings in cities like Kansas City, where driving from one part of the city to another means crossing from Kansas into Missouri…

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As they tried to approach the suspect, there was an incident that happened. An officer involved shooting took place.  – Jenny Virden

Regular readers may recall that Vangelis is one of my favorite musicians; this is one of my favorites of his albums (the others being China, Opera Sauvage and Soil Festivities, with Albedo 0.39 and Heaven and Hell not far behind).  It makes me wonder if people in the teens & twenties today feel about this music as many people my age might feel about, say, Count Basie.  The links above the video were provided by Whores of Yore, Scott Shackford, Scott Greenfield, Franklin Harris, Tushy Galore, and Tim Cushing, in that order.

From the Archives

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The Rest of the Story

Those who periodically look at my Amazon wishlist may have wondered why I have a number of power tools on there.  I mean, it should be fairly obvious that they’re for Grace, and that she’s in need of them for the work in bringing the house and other facilities at Sunset up to snuff, not to mention improving them.  But those of you who’ve been reading this blog for a while know that Grace and I have lived together since early 1998, and that she did a lot of work building things for me at Avalon, my ranch in Oklahoma.  So you may have wondered why in the world she needs such basic things as a cordless drill, a belt sander and an air-tool kit; I mean, obviously I should’ve bought her all of that years ago, right?  So why didn’t I?  Well, the answer is, I did…and then something happened during the move.  Last August, Diary #374 described it this way:

While I was enjoying the eclipse with Lorelei last Monday, Grace was encountering problems in Oklahoma.  I’d rather not go into the nature of those problems, except to say that they were human-caused, completely unnecessary and painfully expensive.  I don’t mean car-repair expensive, either; I mean cost-of-a-moderate-new-car expensive, and bad enough that poor Grace (who had to deal with it firsthand) was quite depressed all week.  On top of everything else, her departure was delayed from Monday until Friday, and the rest of the moving schedule is now kind of uncertain…It’s a damned good thing I have no more debt, because this move was expensive even before an asshole I won’t name elected to at least triple the cost of it by being entitled, evil scum…

I didn’t want to elaborate at the time because I wanted to leave things open for possible legal action, but since it’s been over a year and it doesn’t look like there’s anything that can be done, I’ve decided it’s time to tell the whole infuriating tale.

When I first bought my land in Oklahoma back in 2002, one of our neighbors was a rancher with quite a bit of land; he is a decent fellow who helped us out more than once, but unfortunately he’s burdened with two ne’er-do-well sons.  When we arrived one of those sons, who was 22 at the time if memory serves, was serving a sentence for methamphetamine distribution; judging by some of the debris we discovered while building our place, he had at some point had a lab there which burned down (the previous owner, whom I had bought the property from, lived in town and rarely visited it).  Naturally, since I’m not a hypocrite, I didn’t judge him for having a criminalized business, and after he was released he got a job in the oilfield out of state and was gone for years.  His brother was a well-known hothead who, during the years we lived in the area, was arrested for assault on numerous occasions, and in fact during the incident I’m about to relate he was preparing to go to prison for several years as part of a plea bargain for several such charges, the most serious of which resulted from his literally ramming another man’s car with his pickup truck because the man had gone on a date with a woman the hothead had dated a few times but was not married or otherwise formally committed to.

Anyhow, a few years ago the rancher (the one with the sons) had expressed an interest in buying part of my property, so that I could use the money to finish my house.  In the autumn of 2016 I started thinking about that again, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized I had put down roots in Seattle and just couldn’t go back to Oklahoma to stay.  I asked Grace what she thought about the idea of selling the whole property to the neighbor and buying a place in Washington, and without hesitation she answered, “I want to be with you.”  So I called him and asked if he was still interested, and he replied that he would help his son (the former meth dealer) to buy it so he could put cattle on it and thereby make a living without having to rely on jobs (which he apparently had not had a good track record with in the years after prison).  The young man (I reckon about 37 by that point) called me, we agreed on a price pretty quickly, and he agreed to give Grace until October 1st to finish the move.

If things had gone as planned, I wouldn’t be writing this; however, they did not.  The first leg of the move took longer than expected, and the buyer lost his job in the meantime; since the deal had already been completed thanks to a loan from his father, the sale was unaffected.  But as I quickly discovered, he suffers from that species of sociopathy characterized by the conviction that the world owes him a living, and therefore it was somehow my responsibility to complete the move instantly (over six weeks ahead of schedule) so he could move into the house and therefore not have to pay rent at his current place.  I told him that was impossible, and he began badgering both Grace and I; worse still, he started removing things from the property that were not part of the deal and insisting that they were.  Finally, the night before Grace arrived for the second load, some mysterious person supposedly cut the lock off of our gate, drove a truck and trailer up to our shop, smashed the locked door in with sledgehammers and stole most of Grace’s tools…roughly $20,000 worth, which I had bought for her over the whole time we’d been together.  Grace was utterly devastated; building things is for her a profession, a hobby, a means of demonstrating love and her mode of self-expression.  As she said at the time, “I feel like my whole life has been taken away.”  It was obvious who the culprit was; the sheriff told Grace that the new owner of my ranch and two friends of his were suspected of several other very similar robberies over the past few years, but they must’ve had a good fence because nothing could ever be proven and the stolen property could never be found.  Needless to say, the next two trips were very tense; we think he may have even killed a couple of our dogs and I wouldn’t be surprised if the sudden, mysterious death of our llama Colleen might not have been due to some kind of poison he put into her food.  On the very last trip, Chekhov told me he was stalking around with a gun on his hip, obviously an implied threat.

There’s not much left to tell.  The move was finally finished, and I’ve been working on replacing the various tools as Grace needs them.  There were actually a few at Sunset when we bought it, and the thieves had missed some large and expensive things at the back of the shop; one of my gentlemen (who is a talented fabricator himself) very generously replaced nearly all of her hand tools with top-of-the-line sets last Christmas, and Grace found an excellent deal on a new combination welder (MIG, TIG and stick in one unit) at Harbor Freight, which I bought for her earlier this year.  But we still have quite a way to go before most of the lost items are replaced, so I hope y’all will understand if I devote some space on my wishlist to share the generosity of my readers with my dearest and most beloved friend.

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People are losing their lives, their freedom, their children, their marriages — all because of this one man.  –  Erika Helms

If you don’t habitually consume cannabis edibles as I do, you may not realize that a lot of factors affect their potency and onset rate, including recently-eaten foods, time of the month (for women) and even the brand of edibles.  So even though I use only 10 mg on nights when I just want to relax and sleep, sometimes that 10 mg hits me a lot harder and faster than at other times.  And when that happens, I’ve discovered that shows from my childhood can be extremely entertaining.  Consider, for example, this extremely weird little song from Sesame Street; try watching it while high and you may see what I’m talking about.  I don’t recall where I got the first link above the video, but the others were provided by Franklin HarrisNattie RomanElizabeth N. BrownJesse Walker, and Mike Chase, in that order.

From the Archives

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Think about it like a horror movie…when [the villain] stops and he turns and makes eye contact with the victim, then that’s when the music starts playing.  –  Daniel Herbert

Though this video (via David Ley) is a parody, it’s not that much more ridiculous than actual government anti-sex propaganda.  The links above it were provided by Jesse Walker (“Frisby” and “happens”), Franklin Harris (“unexpected”), Amy Alkon (“clients”), Popehat (“guessed”), and Scott Greenfield (“video”).

From the Archives

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