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Posts Tagged ‘fascism’

I hear that China is unhappy about this conference…Well, I am unhappy there’s a country in 2021 that has concentration camps.  –  Zdeněk Hřib

Above the Law

The rapist gets a respectful title, while his victims are dehumanized as “offenders”:

A [typical and representative Florida] probation officer…has been arrested [for orally raping] two people [he was given coercive power over by the State]…Jeremy Greenidge…also [tried to coerce] a third [victim, who]…report[ed him]…

Dangerous Speech (#1031)

It’s an atrocity that these grossly-unconstitutional robberies weren’t ruled illegal from the beginning:

Staring down the barrel of an expensive retrial triggered by intentional government overreach, defense attorneys in the Lacey/Larkin case are asking federal Judge Diane Humetewa to release a fraction of the millions of dollars in assets illegally s[tolen] by the prosecution in its bid to starve the defendants into submission…The move forced Lacey, Larkin and their four co-defendants to fight a grotesquely expensive legal war on two fronts…the defense…is requesting that Judge Humetewa…un-freeze four specific categories of funds that should never have been seized because they cannot be traced to any alleged illegal activity.  These assets include…more than $10 million in defense attorneys’ trust accounts…

Working From Home (#1103)

No, these “new regulations” are not “intended to fight child sexual abuse and sex trafficking”. They’re intended to do just what they’re doing:

…creators of adult content were shaken when OnlyFans announced…it would ban adult content…it…reverse[d] its stance only days later after an outcry…[but] creators…are bracing for further disruption.  Groups campaigning against sex [workers]…are pushing credit card companies to impose [increasingly-stringent] requirements for processing payments on behalf of sexually explicit sites, aiming to [choke off sex workers’ income]…But, although [amateurs believe prohibitionist claims that] the policies are aimed at protecting those who might be forced into sex work, [in truth the crusade is directed at harming all sex workers]…The rules…seem innocuous [to amateurs]…but [are]…time-consuming and confusing…creating a bureaucracy that threatens their livelihoods [by consuming time and energy that would otherwise be spent in productive work]…In addition, the new…requirements…are delaying payments…

A Woman’s Point of View (#1114)

A petition to put a decriminalization measure on the ballot in Oregon:

An advocacy group called the Sex Worker Rights Act campaign filed a petition…seek[ing] to repeal Oregon’s prostitution laws and amend other relevant statutes.  The petition also seeks to [bar government from denying employees of sex work businesses status] as “employees” under Oregon law; protect people who are or once were sex workers from discrimination and retaliation in the workplace; and prevent a person’s past or present employment as a sex worker from being held against them in child custody disputes…The petitioners must gather 112,020 signatures to get the initiative on the November 2022 ballot.  Should it qualify, the ballot measure could become a sticking point in the Oregon governor’s race….[because noted prohibitionist] Nicholas Kristof has [announced he is running.  Kristof]… support[s]…a dis[credited and dangerous form of oppressing] sex work[ers] known as the “Nordic Model”—which [officially classifies women as moral inferiors of men]…

The Next Target (#1180)

Lux Alptraum and Erika Moen team up to detail (in cartoon form) how the recent brouhaha over OnlyFans is merely “the latest installment of Visa & Mastercard’s war on porn“.  As they explain, it’s really only the latest in a campaign against free expression that has existed since not very long after the internet became popular.

Quiet Genocide (#1191)

If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor“:

The Marriott hotel in Prague [refus]ed to host a conference of activists and leaders from China’s Uyghur diaspora this month, c[laim]ing “political neutrality”…[this] reflects China’s growing ability to extend authoritarian control beyond its borders by making clear to corporations that crossing the party’s red lines will be bad for business…Marriott frequently hosts political fundraisers and events…[and Marriott corporate management said]…hosting the conference would not have violated any “political neutrality” policy…[however] Marriott International issued a profuse apology [for sharing facts Beijing dislikes] in 2018…

Rotting Fruit (#1191)

Now this will set the cat among the pigeons:

Exactly a week before the anticipated start of her sex trafficking trial, Ghislaine Maxwell received permission to call [noted]…memory…expert…Elizabeth Loftus..[who] has questioned the reliability of memory and…[demonstrated that] suggestion can mold it…[Despite the recovered-memory and “sex trafficking” industries’ repeated attempts to portray her as some kind of hired gun for rapists and child molesters]…Judge Alison Nathan granted Maxwell permission to call Loftus—subject to certain limitations that are currently under seal.  The threadbare order states only that the government’s motion to block her testimony is denied in part and granted in part…

If you want to understand exactly why Loftus’ testimony is liable to cause drama, you should watch this and read my academic paper “Mind-Witness Testimony“.

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This is not a Uyghur tragedy. This is a human tragedy.  –  Gulchehra Hoja

Guinea Pigs (#970)

Is Facebook finally going to do something about the creation of predatory accounts by law enforcement?

Facebook is demanding that the Los Angeles police department cease all use of [fake] accounts on its platforms and stop collecting data on users for surveillance…after the Guardianrevealed the department [collaborat]ed in 2019 with Voyager Labs, a tech company that [spies on people]…by analyzing social media information such as a person’s friends, posts and usernames…in addition to enabling law enforcement clients to [steal] user data from companies like Facebook, Voyager software also enables…[the creation of] fake accounts to access otherwise inaccessible and private user information…both these uses are violations of [Facebook] policies…

Welcome to the Future (#997)

Another would-be magic lasso based in pseudoscience:

…EyeDetect is just the polygraph in more algorithmic clothing.  The machine is fundamentally unable to deliver on its claims…because human truth-telling is too subtle for any data set…Where the polygraph measures blood pressure, breathing and sweat to determine the flubbing, EyeDetect looks at factors like pupil dilation and the rapidity of eye movement…But experts say such logic may not have much basis in science…Leonard Saxe, a psychologist…who has conducted some of the leading research in the field of truth-detection…says, “I don’t know of any evidence that eye movements are linked to deception”…[yet despite] the polygraph[‘s]…long history of…failure…it…continues to be used [by people who prize false certainty over actual truth, such as cops and]…government [officials]…

Top Cop (#1108)

This authoritarian psychopath wants you to forget what she’s really like:

…polls show the vice president to be deeply unpopular with voters—even less popular than Biden, whose approval numbers have been underwater since August…Her…sloppy attempts to rewrite her biography…attest to an uncomfortable relationship between who Harris is and who she’s trying to convince you she is…Harris is a cop and that won’t change no matter how many times she tries to awkwardly mouth the buzzwords of the progressive youths.  If you’re the type of person who defends dirty copsthrows poor parents in jail when their kids miss school, or laughs at the idea of inmates being denied food and water, then you’re probably never going to be believably woke…Harris is a law-and-order politician in a party that no longer has much room for cops and heavy-handed prosecutors (unless they’re prosecuting the right people).  Her attempts at evolving her image have been disingenuous and unconvincing.  And now she’s tethered to a sinking ship of a presidency, and she doesn’t seem too interested in helping to bail—only in complaining that her feet are getting wet.  And, no, don’t chalk up Harris’ poor poll numbers or criticism of her political performance to sexism and racism…there are plenty of more popular politicians out there who are racial minorities and/or women.  Harris’ popularity problems are her own…

Quiet Genocide (#1114)

Fascist corporations are happy to assist in a genocide:

With the Beijing Olympics less than three months away, will Coca-Cola and other sponsors of the Games celebrate with China while…an entire people is being slowly, deliberately erased?  We have learned to think of genocide as industrial-scale slaughter: gas chambers, killing fields, mass graves.  A report published last week by the U.S. Holocaust Museum’s Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide, “To Make Us Slowly Disappear,” suggests that China may have found a different way, more insidious if no less monstrous.  The campaign against the Uyghur[s]…began with conventional discrimination, escalated to intense surveillance and mass detentions, and now includes forcible sterilization and insertion of IUDs; separation of men and women through incarceration, forced migration and coerced [sham] marriages of Uyghur women to men from the ethnic Han majority; and mass kidnapping of Uyghur children, taken from their parents and placed in state “boarding schools”…

Rotting Fruit (#1126)

The state demands an eye for an eye, but it doesn’t really care whose eye:

Jeffrey Epstein…isn’t just gone; he’s quickly being forgotten, relegated to a supporting role in the scandal that bears his name.  Our focus has turned to Ghislaine Maxwell, whose status has grown so great in the wake of Epstein’s death that she has all but eclipsed the man without whose bad acts there would never have been a story at all…In 2019, when Epstein was arrested and charged with sex trafficking, Maxwell was covered as more of a curiosity than an accomplice — let alone a puppeteer pulling his strings…today…Maxwell’s guilt is treated as a foregone conclusion…the public narrative has already promoted her from partner to boss…The female villain who wields power in the form of manipulation is an ancient fictional archetype; from Eve and the apple on up, it serves to tell us that it’s women’s ambition which forms the true roots of men’s evil deeds.  In Snow White, it’s the power-hungry and jealous queen who orders a huntsman to cut out the heart of her stepdaughter.  In Shakespeare, it’s Lady Macbeth who gets stuck with indelible bloodstains on her hands…in Epstein’s case…the more we hear about Ghislaine Maxwell, the less agency Epstein seems to have…

The Next Target (#1180)

Mastercard’s elaborate concern kabuki is the direct result of “sex trafficking” propaganda:

…for the first time, [Mastercard is] requir[ing] Pornhub, OnlyFans, and other distribution companies to obtain copies of age-verification records instead of only the owner of the content having and maintaining them…making [performers] vulnerable to fraudsters, blackmail artists, and worst of all, people who want to harm us physically…The general public should freak out that Mastercard now controls what they can and cannot watch.  Today, they’re regulating porn, but what if they start deeming what cinema and books we consume?  What if tomorrow they stop processing payments of booksellers that sell Lolita?…Mastercard implemented their porn rules because of a targeted campaign spearheaded by bad-faith actors like Exodus Cry.  In the future, they could quickly stop processing payments of controversial political material due to public pressure.  Last month, c[ensorious] Virginia parents demanded school libraries strip Toni Morrison’s Beloved from their shelves…if activists could scream loud enough so Mastercard could regulate porn, it’s easy to imagine the company coming after other forms of speech.  One day, something isn’t controversial; the next day, it is.  America flip-flops on which artists we hate daily…

The Cop Myth (#1187)

Why are people shocked when men paid and encouraged to behave violently, behave violently?

…a…four-day manhunt for [typical and representative] Baltimore Co[p]…Robert Vicosa [ended when he murdered] his two kidnapped daughters [and his cop girlfriend, Tia Bynum, then shot himself]…Giana and Aaminah Vicosa…[were] 7 and 6, respectively…The [two cops] had been on the run after…kidnapping Vicosa’s daughters from his estranged wife…then robbing and carjacking the people they encountered while trying to [get aw]ay…the two…[had] lured his estranged wife to his home…the[n held her captive…[ti]ed her [up in] the basement and…drugged…threatened…and sexually assaulted her, [then fled after the ex managed to escape and call the cops]…

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Censorship, once condemned by all ethical people, has now become almost universally popular.  –  “The Convergence of Censors

The speed at which censorship, up to and including calls for literal book-burning, has increased in the past few years is horrifying to any thinking person (by which I mean any person who thinks for themselvs rather than simply parroting what their “thought leaders” tell them to think).  This year’s column for “Banned Books Week” linked no fewer than 14 articles collected over a six-month period, but conditions are degenerating so quickly I’ve collected four more just since the beginning of this month.  Only one of them is about corporate media censorship:

Streaming media giant Roku pushed back on “clickbait” headlines…saying its decision to remove “‘non-certified channels” goes beyond banning Pornhub and other private pornographic channels.  Responding to multiple headlines this week [derived from claims by Morality in Media and other pro-censorship groups]…Roku…[released] a statement saying that the decision to eliminate “non-certified” channels aligns the company’s screening of content with what Apple, Amazon, Samsung and Xbox already do with apps…the fact that Pornhub and other adult entertainment platforms had found their way onto Roku televisions through private or non-certified channels was incidental to the decision, which intends to standardize the tools that app developers use to create channels…

But the others are all about government censorship of books; the first in Kansas:

The Goddard school district has removed more than two dozen books from circulation in the district’s school libraries, citing [a bandwagon they want to jump on]…The list…includes…The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison, The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas…The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky…Fences…by August Wilson and They Called Themselves the K.K.K…[bureaucrats claimed the ban isn’t really a ban because they’re belching out the words] “unsuitable for children” [while banning them]…

Not to be outdone by Midwesterners, Virginia’s authoritarians are calling for literal book-burning:

The Spotsylvania County School Board has directed staff to begin removing books that contain [what they have chosen to label] “sexually explicit” material from library shelves and report on the number of books that have been removed…The board also…indicated that it will consider a division-wide library audit…[and] plans to [add other categories to its definition of]…“objectionable” for a further review of library holdings…Two board members…Rabih Abuismail and…Kirk Twigg, said they would like to see the removed books burned.  “I think we should throw those books in a fire,” Abuismail said, and Twigg said he wants to “see the books before we burn them so we can [demonstrate to ignorant bigots] that we are eradicating this bad stuff”…Abuismail [then convulsively vomited out filth about how]…public schools “would rather have our kids reading gay pornography than about Christ”…

And Texas authoritarians are unsatisfied with merely torturing librarians by forcing them to assist violently-fanatical censors:

Texas Governor Greg Abbott…sent a…letter to state education authorities claiming minors “have been exposed to pornographic books and content in Texas public schools” and [belching out the words]…“obscene”…“protect Texas students”…”no educational purpose”…[and] “clear violation of the law.”  Abbott also [defined books censors dislike as]…“pornography being provided to minors”…[and threatened school librarians with life-destroying] “prosecution to the fullest extent of the law”…

I’m really hoping that this is a short-lived phenomenon. But given what I’ve seen over the past decade, I suspect that hope will be a forlorn one.

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A system that allows this level of sustained incompetence and cruelty…is morally bankrupt.  –  Tod Wilcox

Where Are the Victims?

They’re talking about ordinary-sounding escort agencies or phone services:

…a BBC [news show claims it]…has evidence that…pimps are using Vivastreet to advertise multiple women under their control…one mobile phone number was being used for 78 ads on the site – which suggests the women might be controlled by a single person [because obviously, women are much too stupid to hire answering services like other businesses do]…some of the adverts for sex contained [what prohibitionists, cops, and others who wank to fantasies of passive, doll-like women enjoy calling] the warning signs of sexual exploitation.  One such sign is when multiple women [use the same phone answering service]…Diana Johnson, chair of the [politicians’] Group [trying once again to impose Swedish criminalization on the UK, barfed up childish nonsense about]…”a pimp’s paradise”…Stuart Peall…a…Lancashire [vice cop, made furtive movements in his pants while burbling about how]…”it’s like a takeaway menu”…

It’s really sad that the BBC has sunk to the “IT’S LIKE PIZZA!” level of journalism.

Surplus Women

Your government wants this to happen more often:

Police have arrested a man believed to be the serial killer responsible for six murders and several shootings that happened in St. Louis…and Kansas City…during a span of several weeks in September and late October…Perez Reed…used the same gun to shoot all of the victims…He is also suspected of multiple other homicides in the St. Louis and Kansas City areas…[but his] motive remains unknown.  Most of the victims were women…some were involved in sex work.  And other[s appear to have been transwomen]…Some…were shot in the back of their heads…some victims didn’t fit into any type of pattern and some survived.  One man was waiting for a bus when he was shot but survived…most of the…[victims]…did not know their killer — who does not have much of a criminal history…

Missouri cops of course had to demonstrate what they are by misgendering some of the dead.

Rooted in Racism (#966)

The racism of European “anti-trafficking” schemes is getting harder to disguise:

EU [politicians want to]…e[conomically] sa[botage] Minsk…[for allowing] large numbers of [brown people into]…Belarus…in hopes of [stopping them] crossing into Polish territory…European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen called…[the migration of brown people a] “hybrid attack”…[and said] that the EU “will explore how to…blacklist…third-country airlines” that a[llow brown people to buy tickets, referring to the sales as]…”human trafficking”…[another politician bloviated that] “All airlines of the world should understand that they cooperate with the criminal regime by flying to Belarus”…

Pyrrhic Victory (#996)

A tactic pioneered by China:

The Israeli military has been conducting a broad surveillance effort in the occupied West Bank to monitor Palestinians by integrating facial recognition with a growing network of cameras and smartphones…a…technology called Blue Wolf…captures photos of Palestinians’ faces and matches them to a database of images so extensive that one former soldier described it as the army’s secret “Facebook for Palestinians.”  The phone app flashes in different colors to alert soldiers if a person is to be [harassed], arrested or left alone.  To build the database…soldiers competed last year in photographing Palestinians, including children and the elderly, with prizes for the most pictures collected by each unit…The surveillance program was described…by…soldiers…to…Breaking the Silence…an advocacy group composed of Israeli army veterans that opposes the occupation…

The Implosion Begins (#1172)

Everyone who spread “sex trafficking” hysteria contributed to this atrocity:

John Eisenman [of Spokane fantasized] that his underage daughter’s boyfriend had…sold her into a [“]sex trafficking organization[“] in Seattle.  [After the daughter returned home, an event described by]  Eisenman…as…rescue…[he stalked] the boyfriend, 19-year-old Aaron Sorensen…[and murdered] him…by beating and stabbing…[then put his] body in the trunk [of a car, which he] then abandoned in North Spokane County where it sat for nearly a full year.  In October 2021…[someone found the car and] drove [it] back into Spokane…On Oct. 22, [police] received calls from [someone]…who discovered the body when rummaging through the abandoned vehicle…

Here’s the wholly predictable chaser:

The family of Andrew Sorensen…[pointed out that this supposed “trafficker”] “was born with cerebral palsy, autism, and [was] developmentally delayed…Both the FBI and Washington State Patrol said there is no sex trafficking investigation”…John Eisenman…is facing the charge of first-degree murder and is being held in jail on a $1 million bond…

Torture Chamber (#1184)

Arizona screws are notably devoted to yelling “Stop faking!” at the sick and dying:

A paraplegic man was left to physically deteriorate until his penis had to be amputated.  A man with undiagnosed, untreated lung cancer lost 90 pounds and died “slowly and agonizingly” without pain medication.  A woman’s multiple sclerosis was ignored and misdiagnosed until she was left, at age 36, nearly completely paralyzed.  Arizona’s prison system is on trial once again in a long-running civil lawsuit over [systemic] medical neglect…and a doctor’s testimony in the case paints a stomach-churning picture of unnecessary suffering, malpractice, and death…medical neglect is widespread in American prisons and jails, despite the Eighth Amendment’s supposed guarantee of basic medical care, hygiene, and living conditions.  The American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona and several law firms have been litigating the case since 2012…

To Molest and Rape (Long Hidden)

UK reporters have discussed this more in weeks than US ones have in years:

More than 30 a[ccus]ations of sexual misconduct were made against Suffolk [cops] in the past five years…the figures come amid fresh focus on police conduct after the kidnap, rape and killing of Sarah Everard by [typical and representative cop] Wayne Couzens in March…The case has raised questions about how police forces [refuse to] deal with sexual misconduct amongst their own rank and file after it emerged that Couzens was referred to by his own colleagues as “the rapist”.  Three days before he [raped and murdered a young woman], Couzens also…exposed himself in a McDonald’s restaurant…

Yet reporters still feel the need to include denials and excuses from spokespigs who want to expose even more women to the danger of rape and other violence from cops:

A scheme that will see [disguised cops secretly spying on] clubs and bars [using the excuse of] safeguard[ing] women will instead put them at risk of police violence…the government…first announced plans to roll the scheme out nationwide in the spring…after the kidnapping, murder and rape of Sarah Everard by a serving Metropolitan Police officer…Deniz Ugur…of the End Violence Against Women Coalition said trying to safeguard women from predatory men using [other predatory men] would not tackle the root of the problem…“Given that one woman a week reports domestic abuse by a police officer and that police abuse of power for a sexual purpose is…the most common form of police corruption…these plans will be ineffective and…leave women…at risk of police violence”…

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While the antics of the new god-king are likely to be less openly clownish than those of the deposed one, all of the other problems…will remain.  –  “War Party

Twice every year, I remind my readers that the best way to actually honor deceased veterans is to stop making so damned many of them.  But in the US, that is a forlorn hope, and as I predicted a year ago today the newest US Emperor is just as dedicated to murdering children as his predecessors.  When I first started this blog, for the first few years I used this day to tell the stories of whores in wartime, including Mata Hari, the women of Nazi-occupied Paris, and the whores who cared for wounded soldiers during the seige of Dien Bien Phu.  But after that I began to turn toward commentary on warfare in general, or rather the modern business of warfare that has put US “defense contractors” among the wealthiest corporations in history and has helped to create the modern fascist system embraced by the majority of advanced 21st century nation-states.  And so, as I have this year for the other occasions I usually recognize with essays, I wish to share selections from previous essays.

The world’s one remaining empire is engaged in…many endless, pointless wars whose costs would have staggered the Rothschilds, whose lack of clear imperial goals would have confused a Caesar or a Napoleon, and whose sheer, mindless carnage would have nauseated the Spartans.  –  “War Without End

The ideas that humans could ever become sated with bloodshed, or that all violence springs from some evil “other” which need only be defeated to bring lasting peace to the world, are still popular among soft-headed naifs to this very day; they are close kin to the childish belief that the “right” people can be trusted with power over others.  –  “To End All Wars

Obviously murdered kids are happier when taking the last ferry ride if they were shipped down to the Styx by order of a woman; this is what extremely stupid people call “feminism”.  –  “The Resistance

The American use of the day to honor veterans both living and dead, whether they participated in a war or not, actually subverts the original intent of a day to honor those whose lives were senselessly lost in the greatest sustained campaign of carnage the world had to that point ever seen.  –  “Armistice Day

Up until a century ago, nobody pretended to be surprised by [soldiers’ need for sex] or subscribed to the ridiculous delusion that it could or should be prevented somehow.  –  “Camp Followers

While [wars are] going on, politics takes a back seat to reality and the necessity of dealing with the sexual energy of fighting men can no longer be subordinated to the bluenosed sensibilities of repressed civilians.  –  “Remembrance

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[The Backpage] case is a hot mess.  –  Michael Piccarreta

The Punitive Mindset (#872) 

Much more of this, please:

I was incredibly disappointed when I recently learned that music artists are partnering with telecom corporations in the prison industryPrison telecom is a $1.4 billion industry dominated by just two corporations that charge families extortionate rates to communicate with their incarcerated loved ones.  One of these…is Aventiv Technologies, which [owns the]…notoriously predatory…Securus and JPay.  Securus controls roughly 40 percent of the prison and jail telecom market and charges as much as a dollar per minute for a simple call.  JPay charges similarly egregious rates for everything from money transfers to emails…And both…routinely face legal action for an extensive list of unlawful practices…including the unlawful recording of sacred attorney-client calls…As music executives and artists, we should…not [be] cutting back-office deals with…the prison industry…I’m making a pledge not to collaborate with corporations that profit from incarceration…And I urge my fellow music executives and artists to join me…

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#957) 

“Porn addiction” is still being used as an excuse for violent crimes:

Two 11-year-old “porn addicts” have been arrested in India after they allegedly stoned a six-year-old girl to death for refusing to perform sex acts they had watched on their parents’ phones…Authorities arrested the two…along with another eight-year-old who is thought to have [stood guard while] the [others] murder[ed] the…girl…children are seen as having criminal responsibility from the age of seven in India…

Subtle Pimping (#1013)

While American cops favor VR porn games, Kazakh cops prefer LARPing:

A…week-long simulation exercise on combating…migration…started on 11 October 2021 in Almaty.  The simulation exercise [refers to this migration control as “]Combating Trafficking in Human Beings[“, following the racist European practice]…this training exercise offers f[antasies in place of]…real-life [situations], using actors to create [fantasy] trafficking scenarios.  A fictitious brothel..a[nd] massage parlor…were…created to…[indoctrin]ate c[ops in the fantasy version] of human trafficking…and sexual exploitation…

Torture Chamber (#1037)

The PREA is just feel-good nonsense as long as screws have absolute power over their victims:

…a 23-year-old woman…committed suicide in a [Forks,] Washington jail [after] she tried to report sexual harassment by a guard, but her complaint was [ignored].  Months later, that same [screw] was sentenced to prison for [raping] four other women…the family of Kimberly Bender [is suing jail] officials…[for allow]ing Bender…[to] be…tormented by a [typical and representative screw] with a known misconduct record…John Gray…[repeat]edly tormented Bender at night, leering at her, making “vile” comments, and frequently waking her up.  Bender, “struggling with heroin withdrawal, was unable to sleep, rest, or relax because of…Gray”…wh[o was]…previously…fire[d from a different cage stack] in 2018 for m[oc]king…a training on the Prison Rape Elimination Act…[by making disgusting] “comments and sounds such as, ‘Here we go’ and ‘oooh…oh yeah baby…mmmmm'” during a [scene showing]…a woman [groping]…another woman [under the pretext of a “search”]…PREA is [well-known to be] largely toothless.  Since the reporting rules went into effect in 2012, reports of sexual assaults in prisons and jails have dramatically increased, especially at local and county jails…

The Convergence of Censors

Vomit out the right buzzwords and you can censor at will:

The Waterloo Region District School Board is undertaking a multi-year review of its library collections to [censor] any texts deemed “[magically] harmful to staff and students.”  Graham Shantz, coordinating [bureaucrat, made a bunch of incoherent, pseudointellectual excuses about why stunting students’ intellectual growth and controlling their thoughts is actually a good thing, belching out words like]…”inappropriate…questionable and…pedagogical framework”…[to support plain old-fashioned book burning]…Earlier this year, the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board removed William Golding’s classic Lord of the Flies from its curriculum after [bureaucrats vomited out the words]…white, male power structures [at librarians].  Other books recently removed from Canadian school libraries…in response to complaints [backed by fashionable pseudointellectual bullshit]…include Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird and Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale

To Molest and Rape (#1130)

Imagine a non-cop child rapist staying free for decades like this:

A [typical and representative] New York [cop] who for decades has delayed facing [trial for]…repeatedly rap[ing] and molest[ing] his daughter’s 12-year-old friend was arrested in Florida…Leonard Forte, who is now 80…was [found guilty] in Vermont in 1988…[but] the judge tossed the verdict…[because cop]…and…Forte persuaded prosecutors to delay the retrial because he [claimed to be terminally ill]…A USA Today investigation in 2019 revealed how Vermont prosecutors had mishandled the case [for over 25 years]…and exposed Forte’s dubious claims about his health…[thus shaming] Vermont’s Attorney General’s Office [into] reviv[ing] the case…

Dangerous Speech (#1184)

After presiding over an evil clown show for months, Brnovich does what an ethical judge would’ve done a year ago:

…Judge Susan Brnovich today recused herself from the [Backpage] trial…[without providing a] reason…the case ha[s] been reassigned by lot to…Judge Diane J. Humetewa…Brnovich…previously refused to recuse herself from the case [despite obvious]…conflict [of interest due to]…Brnovich’s [being married to the attorney general of Arizona, a noted prohibitionist with a history of disseminating anti-Backpage propaganda]…Humetewa is…the fourth judge on the case…Steven Logan was first assigned to the case…[but] recused himself with no explanation in March 2019.  The case was briefly assigned to…Douglas Rayes, who immediately recused himself sans explanation…Brnovich was then assigned the case…Tucson criminal defense attorney and former Arizona State Bar President Michael Piccarreta [pointed out that]…“Someone’s going to have to take a look at the government’s overreaching issues…No judge wants to have to deal with that”…prosecutorial misconduct in this case…[includes] the [intentional] destruction of exculpatory evidence…and…the [armed robbery] of millions of dollars in assets, including…more than $10 million from lawyers for the defense…

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This case is important…because of…Texas’s cavalier and contemptuous mechanism for shielding from review potential violations of constitutional rights.  –  The Firearms Policy Coalition

Above the Law  

A rare case of a government functionary actually being punished for his crimes:

A [typical and representative porcine creature] will now spend life in prison himself after [raping women he was paid by the State to haul from one cage to another like livestock]…A federal judge in Little Rock, Arkansas sentenced Eric Scott Kindlay…to life in prison plus five years.  Kindlay…[ran] his own private prison transport company, signing contracts with local jails and [other government cage stacks to haul]…people who had been arrested on out-of-state warrants.  The…woman in the 2017 case testified that Kindlay [raped]…her…on a deserted stretch of road [en route from Alabama to Arizona]…in 2014…Kindlay [orally raped another woman]…after telling her that he had gotten lost.  Kindlay [attacked both]…while [they were] handcuffed.  While only two charges of sexual assault were listed on the indictment, a total of six women testified…that…for hundreds of miles…he [repeatedly] “threatened to kill them and made sexually explicit comments that escalated in intensity and depravity”…[he raped one] woman…in a park bathroom…a[nd another]…on [a] desolate hiking trail…in the middle of a snowstorm.  The individual [victims] did not apparently know that the others existed until the trial…[the] FBI…uncovered a total of 16 women who Kindlay had either harassed or assaulted from 2012 to 2017.  Eleven of these women submitted…statements…

Dysphemisms Galore (#345)

Many “sex trafficking” fetishists are also fixated on hentai:

…the web of human trafficking is a sordid saga…of dream merchants…with the connivance of traffickers, whose…illegal immigrants, once caught in these tentacles, most often succumb to…[being] deeply absorbed in the flesh trade…

Torture Chamber (#1143)

Stop faking!

Marc Crawford was booked into a Kentucky jail in May 2017.  Just shy of a month later, he left state custody in a body bag…[after] succumb[ing] to a previously diagnosed case of lung cancer, one for which state officials and health care contracting companies re[fused] to provide him basic treatment…Correct Care Solutions LLC, one of those contracting companies, refused to ensure Crawford received his scheduled chemotherapy treatments, and s[crews refused]…to give Crawford his prescriptions, took off his pain-medication patch, and put him on psychoactive medications that did not[hing to] treat his illness.  [Screws yelled “Stop faking!]…as Crawford vomited blood, and senior s[crews]…rebuffed several requests from a lower-level employee to [actually] give him [his prescribed medication]…

A Broker in Pillage (#1161)

Philadelphia has many different ways to rob its citizens:

Philadelphia’s notorious civil forfeiture program…ended in 2018 as a result of a 2014 class action lawsuit filed by the Institute for Justice…The organization…recently surveyed 407 of the 30,000 people whose property was seized under Philadelphia’s program…the median value of seized items…was just $600.  More than two-thirds…were valued at $1,800 or less.  The median value of all property seized in a single case was $1,370.  Cash seizures…involved amounts as low as $25.  The cops even [stole] “a cologne gift set worth $20″ and a pair of crutches…In three-quarters of the cases…owners were either never arrested, never charged, or never convicted.  Yet…only 43 percent of [victims]…succeeded…[in getting] their property back…at a median cost of $3,500…and…[taking] nine months on average.  Some had to wait years…”just four ZIP codes in the city’s center” accounted for 57 percent of Philadelphia forfeitures.  The median income in those neighborhoods ranged from $16,000 to $30,000…[and] residents were mainly black or Hispanic…owners of seized property also were more likely to be unemployed and to earn less than $50,000 a year.  They were less likely to have college degrees and less likely to own a home…

The Mob Rules

I wish more people understood the power of legal precedent this well:

The Firearms Policy Coalition, a national gun rights outfit, filed a friend of the court brief at the U.S. Supreme Court…in support of Whole Woman’s Health, the abortion rights group that is leading the legal fight against…the sweeping Texas anti-abortion law that recently went into effect.  “The approach used by Texas to avoid pre-enforcement review of its restriction on abortion and its delegation of enforcement to private litigants…could just as easily be used by other States to restrict First and Second Amendment rights or, indeed, virtually any settled or debated constitutional right.”  The Firearms Policy Coalition “takes no position on whether abortion should be protected by the Constitution,” the brief stated, “but believes that the judicial review of restrictions on established constitutional rights, especially those protected under this Court’s cases, cannot be circumvented in the manner used by Texas”…

I Spy (#1171)

Oh, what a surprise:

Governments were already discussing how to misuse…[cell phone] scanning technology even before Apple announced its plans…[to] scan iPhones for child sexual abuse materials…[it was obvious] that…governments [would] insist…the company scan for other types of images, and there now seems good evidence for this [despite]…Apple[‘s pretense] that it had a [magical politician-proof] safeguard in place to…prevent [governmental] misuse…such promises are impossible to keep…[because] any government could pass a law requiring tech companies to use their available capabilities (e.g., the CSAM scanning system) to look for images they say are associated with terrorism, or any type of political opposition…A group of security researchers says that the European Union [already] planned to use this technology to scan for other types of images even before Apple revealed that it had developed its own system…

Dangerous Speech (#1172)

Remember how I pointed out that the government couldn’t win this fairly?

Defense attorneys in the Lacey/Larkin case…argue in a new motion that the government willfully ignored federal Judge Susan Brnovich’s instructions during the pair’s recent trial in Phoenix.  Instead, prosecutors doubled down on false accusations of sex trafficking and child sex trafficking, goading the defense into calling for a mistrial…the motion calls on Brnovich to dismiss the case with prejudice [because] in provoking the mistrial, the prosecution violated the double jeopardy clause of the Fifth Amendment…the feds’ mistrial shenanigans were part of “a pattern of repeated and brazen government misconduct,” [intentionally] committed by “seasoned prosecutors”…And because the government has “seized virtually all of the defendants’ assets” — including money set aside for defense costs — the mistrial leaves the defendants in an “untenable” financial position…A new trial would favor the government…allowing it “a retooling of its faltering case”…

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Clearview’s mass scraping of…web data…may be legal, but it certainly isn’t morally acceptable.  –  Tim Cushing

Property of the State (#989)

Pregnant women are uniquely vulnerable to state coercion:

Brittney Poolaw has been sitting in an Oklahoma jail for more than a year and a half…[and was] recently convicted of first-degree manslaughter and sentenced to 4 years in prison for miscarrying her child…In May 2020, Poolaw, then a teen, arrived at a local hospital after losing the fetus at 17 weeks.  She was soon transferred to a cell…[after the hospital called the pigs because]…the [still]born [fetus]…tested positive for methamphetamine…the state’s current abortion laws…allow women to terminate a pregnancy prior to 20 weeks’ gestation…[but] Poolaw wasn’t even seeking an abortion: She had a miscarriage…and she will now suffer a barrage of legal consequences not experienced by Oklahoma women who ask doctors to terminate their pregnancies…

All-Purpose Excuse (#1077)

Facebook didn’t think the face-eating leopards it wanted would eat its face:

…Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich…[has claimed] that he’s investigating “sex trafficking” connected to Facebook ads…[in a] letter to [U.S. Attorney General Merrick] Garland…[Brnovich] complain[ed]…that folks are using Facebook to strategize sneaking into the country.  As a result, AG Brnovich requests that the DOJ “investigate Facebook’s facilitation of human smuggling at Arizona’s southern border and stop its active encouragement and facilitation of illegal entry”…considering that the U.S. government is attempting to railroad veteran journalists Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin…[by] hold[ing] them vicariously accountable for illegal acts allegedly connected to adult ads posted by users of [Backpage]…it’s not out of the realm of speculation that the feds would attempt something similar in regards to Facebook or any other site that hosts third-party content…

Rooted in Racism (#1091)

The racism of European “anti-trafficking” schemes is getting harder to disguise:

Italian police have arrested more than 2,500 migrants for smuggling or aiding illegal immigration since 2013, often using anti-mafia laws to bring charges…Italy has spent decades pursuing a policy of criminalising asylum seekers…filling its prisons with innocent men used as scapegoats…smugglers often choose a migrant as a driver.  This can be someone who does not have enough money to pay for the trip or with experience of navigation.  When the boat enters Italian waters, the authorities ask passengers to identify the driver, who is then arrested…[and] accused of crimes…[including “human] trafficking[“]…They can face sentences from 15 years to life in prison…

Torture Chamber (#1093)

The government needs to be buried in lawsuits before this will stop:

In October 2019, a [screw]…in Central Texas was charged with sexual assault…[for orally raping] a [caged teen] boy…the day after the [rape]…the boy tried to kill himself.  Two months before that…another [screw] was fired after a teenage girl [he raped got] pregnant…the day-to-day conditions [in Texas cage stacks] are relentlessly violent and oppressive, with guards often [brutalizing prisoners for fun]…In 2019…almost 7,000 [cases of violence were reported] — equivalent to six times per [young person locked in state cages] that year…nearly a dozen staff members have been arrested on charges of sexual abuse against juveniles, and complaints about mayhem inside the f[ilthy cages]…are common.  These [facts, reported]…by advocacy groups and families, lawsuits filed against the state, news media reports, and investigations at the state level — present a portrait of a terrifying environment inside juvenile prisons in Texas…The Justice Department’s investigation comes almost a year after two Texas advocacy groups — Disability Rights Texas and Texas Appleseed — filed a complaint urging the federal government to intervene…

Think of the Children! (#1117) 

I’m sure Jesus would approve of punishing children for the sins of their parents:

Sara and Matt Cheek…moved to Lithia, a tiny suburb of Tampa, Florida…after…COVID hit [they suffered a series of financial difficulties, so]…Sara [startedan] OnlyFans [account] and now…makes about $30,000 a month…[their] three children—two boys, ages 4 and 6, and a 7-year-old daughter—enrolled in the Pinecrest Pilots’ Youth Football and Cheerleading program, where Matt served as one of the football coaches…[until] the…cheerleading coach, Bree Coggins, [discovered her OnlyFans account via] Instagram…and [began mistreating her]…daughter…and [encouraging]…all the other girls to [do the same. The mistreatment soon spread to the boys] and Matt [as well]…they’ve been refused service at their local restaurant and Sara no longer visits the grocery store, preferring to order her food online and avoid the judgmental looks.  They transferred their kids over to a charter school, and the family is planning on moving out of Lithia next year…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1128)

Still think this djinni can be crammed back into its bottle?

Clearview’s not going to let several months of bad press derail its plans to generate even more negative press…Maybe it thinks it can still win hearts and minds by not only continuing to exist but also by getting progressively worse in terms of integrity and corporate responsibility…Clearview has now collected more than 10 billion images from across the web—more than three times as many as has been previously reported…it is [also] developing new ways for police to find a person, including “deblur” and “mask removal” tools…If you feel selling government agencies a more efficient way to generate false positives and false negatives is the way to future profitability, this would be the route to take…

To Molest and Rape (#1178)

Notice how often predatory cops’ victims are underage?

A[n]…Alaska [cop named]…Benjamin Strachan…was charged with…sexual abuse of…two minor victims, one…repeatedly…[other cops thought it was very important to say] he [was] not [wearing his magic clown costume while molesting]…

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This…is just encouraging [prohibitionists] to bury us in paperwork that won’t accomplish anything.  –  an adult site webmaster

R.I.P. Shane Petzer

Shane Petzer, co-founder of the Sex Workers Education and Advocacy Taskforce (SWEAT), has died following a sudden heart attack.  Petzer was renowned for his advocacy of sex work in South Africa…Dr. Gordon Isaacs…also a co-founder of SWEAT…became acquainted with Petzer during the 1983 AIDS pandemic…Petzer…[w]as a male sex worker…[who] attend[ed] the first international sex worker conference in Japan…[which] inspired him to start…SWEAT…in 1996 after Petzer [met]…Ilsa Pauw[, an academic studying]…violence against female sex workers in Cape Town. Together with Pauw, Isaacs and a group of other people, SWEAT began its fight for the protection of sex workers…As a man having lived healthily with HIV for 20 years, [Petzer] also advocated for the universal treatment of people living with HIV…

To Molest and Rape

Another sexual predator specifically targeted a traumatized woman:

A Toronto [cop] who [was dispatched] to a woman’s [domestic violence] call…returned to…he[r]…home the next day and sexually assaulted her…Conal Quinn [was charged] with sexual assault and breach of trust following [the] March 21, 2021…assault [and rewarded with a paid vacation]…

Sexcrime (#911)

Respite from UK porn censorship lasted less than three years:

U.K. media [censor] Ofcom…[has] issued “new guidance” for video-sharing platform providers regarding what the government considers “measures to protect users from harmful material”…the…“guidance”…applies to U.K.-based platforms such as OnlyFans, PocketStars, TikTok, Snapchat, Vimeo and Twitch…and…includes…“protecting…users” from “material inciting violence or hatred…terrorism; child sexual abuse material; and racism and xenophobia”…[but the fine print attempts to restore a ban on “]material which has been deemed, or would likely be deemed, unsuitable for classification (such as sadistic violence or torture)[” which was struck down in February 2019]…the “Guidance” is described as “not a set of compulsory steps” but merely as “intended to help guide providers in deciding how best to comply with the statutory requirements”…[but] also [resurrects the requirement for]…”strict age-verification processes” [which was essentially abandoned as unworkable two years ago this month]…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1008) 

European politicians consider talking about taking a baby step in the right direction:

The European Parliament has called for…a ban on law enforcement’s use of facial recognition, as well as other surveillance tools commonly used in the course of [so-called] predictive policing…[cop shops] would be prohibited from conducting biometric surveillance in public spaces—and a moratorium would be placed on tech that scoops up personal data via stuff like “gait, fingerprints, DNA, voice, and other biometric and behavioural signals.”  The measure also suggests the banning of facial recognition databases operated by private companies—a stipulation that would seriously hamper companies like dystopian creepster Clearview AI from operating within the EU’s borders…Yet while that all sounds pretty good, Parliament’s measure is non-binding…

I Spy (#1082)

Curiosity offends the state, comrade:

The U.S. government is secretly ordering Google to provide data on anyone typing in certain search terms…such “keyword warrants” threaten to implicate innocent Web users in serious crimes…[including “sex] trafficking[“]…racketeering…[and] fraud…search term orders are effectively fishing expeditions, hoping to ensnare possible suspects whose identities the government does not know.  It’s not dissimilar to so-called geofence warrants, where [cops demand] Google…provide information on anyone within [a certain distance of some] location [labeled] a crime scene at a given time…Google is continuing to comply with such controversial requests, despite concerns over their legality and the potential to implicate innocent people…Jennifer Granick, surveillance and cybersecurity counsel at…ACLU…[said] “This never-before-possible technique threatens First Amendment interests and will inevitably sweep up innocent people, especially if the keyword terms are not unique and the time frame not precise. To make matters worse, police are currently doing this in secret, which [hides] the practice from public debate and regulation.”

The Next Target (#1130)

This elaborate concern kabuki is the direct result of “sex trafficking” propaganda:

XBIZ has been able to review a suggested “Report Abuse” compliance form that is part of compliance packages that several major industry sites have received with instructions to customize before October 15 in order to continue processing credit card transactions.  The form features a checklist of clickable boxes that anyone visiting an adult site is encouraged to use to report what they [claim] to be…“underage material,” “copyright/trademark infringement”…“prostitution or trafficking,” “weapons,” “drugs” and “other”…[one] webmaster said…“They want us to put a link to this [checklist] in all the footers on every page…which is then [copied] directly to Mastercard.”  The webmaster pointed out that both ruthless competitors and crusading anti-porn activists are likely to flood the system with bogus complaints…The webmaster also noted that the form essentially forces all adult sites to add the words “underage material,” “prostitution or trafficking,” “weapons” and “drugs” to their metadata, which then puts them at risk of AI shadowbans or even state surveillance…

Stalkers in Blue (#1140)

A whole gang of sexual predators specifically targeting traumatized women:

A woman who[se] picture…[was taken without her consent while cops abducted her from a] Sarah Everard vigil [that the cops had tried to prevent w]as [harassed by] “about 50” [cops]…via a dating app, leaving her “terrified”.  Patsy Stevenson…said they knew she was “fearful of police” and had done it “for a reason”…Hundreds attended the vigil…in south London fo[r]…Ms Everard, who was [raped and] murdered by [typical and representative cop] Wayne Couzens after he abducted her while she was walking home…[even though cops tried to] cancel…[the event by claiming]…it w[as] illegal under lockdown restrictions…[just as Couzens himself had used those same tyrannical diktats to intimidate his victim into submitting to abduction]…the “sombre atmosphere… turned very scary very quickly” after police started t[errorizing] the crowd…[Stevenson] has since launched legal action against the Met Police over the arrest

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Censorship, once condemned by all ethical people, has now become almost universally popular.  –  “The Convergence of Censors

The last week of September is “Banned Books Week“; over the 11 years I’ve been writing this blog, my columns on the topic have changed as threats to intellectual freedom have dramatically increased worldwide.  As I said last year,

When I was a librarian, [this] Week was little more than an academic exercise; censorship was an intermittent and generally impotent threat proceeding from small numbers of narrow-minded busybodies, which was easily defeated by librarians and other guardians of our shared cultural heritage.  But that was a generation ago, and would-be censors have become numerous, aggressive, well-organized and (most concerningly) popular.  Few of those under 30 even understand what free speech is or why it’s important, and the majority or those over that age imagine all sorts of exceptions that they believe should be reasons to violently suppress speech…the censor-morons…are…multiplying like bacteria and have already infested all the centers of power…

The links are all there for your perusal, but just in case you’ve been asleep for the past three or four years, here are a few stories from the past six months so you can see for yourself that I’m not exaggerating.  There’s still plenty of old-fashioned, bluenosed, school-based censorship conducted in the name of THE CHIIIIIIIIILDREEEEEEN!!!™, but now they’ve learned to pretend ideas they don’t like constitute a “crime” so as to threaten their enemies with police violence.  Furthermore, institutions writers could once count on to defend them, including libraries and publishers, now race to see who can kowtow most obsequiously to the censor-morons, sometimes even volunteering to act as censors themselves, and institutions which need free speech the most are lobotomizing themselves by peddling pro-censorship sophistry and even conducting literal book burnings.  Governments are increasingly claiming the “right” to declare which facts are “correct” and to suppress ideas they declare “disinformation” or “fake news”, and in our increasingly-connected world governments are increasingly able to cause trouble for people who say things they dislike far beyond their own borders (China is the worst offender, but is far from alone).  Soon, ideas the mob, the government, or other violent simian gangs dislike may become impossible to acquire outside of caches of virtual samizdat, at which point the censor-morons will pivot to criminalizing avenues of access to such caches while “intellectuals” cheer and pen screeds about how obedience and conformity are far better for “society” than imagination and critical thinking.

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