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Posts Tagged ‘surveillance’

[Forcing people to provide private] data…is dangerous, because it’s not a matter of if it will be breached; it’s a matter of when.  –  Caden Rosenbaum

Schadenfreude 

Yet another opportunistic fraud has been unmasked:

…the…[“]sex trafficking[” opportun]ist known as Eliza Bleu has broken into some of the top tiers of right-wing media in just a few years, growing her audience through…[claims that she is] “a survivor of human trafficking”…But now Bleu[‘s lies have been exposed by]…embarrassing images from her past…and…contradict[ions in her backstory from different] videos and interviews—and her frequent use of different names online…Now two former friends of Bleu [have come forward with more details which reveal]…that, at best, Bleu is exaggerating her experiences for attention…Carly Wenzel, a one-time pal…who has known her for two decades…added she believes Bleu is “completely lying”…

Lying Down With Dogs (#335)

What other country uses the term “prostitution” to criminalize consensual behavior the regime dislikes?

An Iranian court has handed jail sentences of more than 10 years each to a young couple who danced in front of one of Tehran’s main landmarks in a video seen as a symbol of defiance against the regime…Astiyazh Haghighi and her fiance, Amir Mohammad Ahmadi, both in their early 20s, were arrested in early November…Haghighi was not wearing a headscarf…women are also not allowed to dance in public, let alone with a man…The couple, who already had a following in Tehran as popular Instagram bloggers, were convicted of “encouraging corruption and public prostitution” as well as “gathering with the intention of disrupting national security”…they [were]…deprived of lawyers during the [kangaroo] court…and attempts to secure their release on bail [were] rejected…

Negative Secondary Effects

It usually starts with sex workers, but it never stops with us:

A bill introduced in West Virginia…aims to ban adult entertainment businesses from the state…The language of the bill is both borderline graphic and incredibly vague: it defines the body parts that stores are prohibited from showing in books, live performances, and films with meticulous specificity…but specific details on which businesses will actually be affected if this bill were to pass into law are left mostly undefined…Under th[e bill’s current language], a bookstore that sells [sex education books or videos]…would be considered an adult business…the terms of this bill could effectively make gay bars and nude modeling at art schools illegal…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1021)

This would be terrible even if the cops weren’t lying:

The…NYPD…is in the process of redesigning its fleet of p[igmobi]les, which will now have 360-degree cameras installed in them for constant [surveillance] of the [citizen]s…Po[rk] Commissioner Keechant Sewell…[lied] that…there are no plans to e[quip] the [cameras with] facial recognition technology…[but she bragged about]…an “augmented reality” app…will allow [cops] to point their smartphones at a location, such as a…[person’s home], and learn about things like wanted suspects or previous 911 calls connected to the address…

Creepy Coppers

The people the government empowers to police your sexuality:

A [Virginia cop named]…David Stone…is currently being held without bond a[fter being]…arrested on Jan. 25…[on] 50 child pornography charges…

Stupor Bowl (#1277)

It’s unsurprising that Arizona is still promoting this nearly-mummified fantasy with police violence against women:

Despite more than a decade of research, reports, editorials, magazine articles and even police accounts debunking the odious myth that the Super Bowl is a magnet for sex trafficking, this zombie lie remains catnip to local politicians, police and media ahead of Super Bowl LVII…But occasionally a little truth sneaks through the miasma of misinformation, as is the case with…Fox 10’s report bolster[ing] the long-disproven…hoax…it inadvertently reveals [that]…Phoenix Police…ha[ve] been regularly arresting unknown numbers of adults [under the pretext that they might be “]victims of sex trafficking[” and] allowing [prohibitionist] groups to proselytize them while in custody…If that sounds familiar, it should, because about 10 years ago, the PPD was involved in a similar, highly-controversial program with ASU’s School of Social Work called Project ROSE

The Mob Rules (#1307)

Tyrannical politicians are now competing to see which state can make adolescence most closely resemble a prison sentence:

A pair of bills in Utah would impose draconian requirements on social media platforms [under the pretext] of protecting children….social media companies would be required to verify the ages of all users from Utah, get parental consent before allowing someone under age 18 to open or maintain an account, provide parents or guardians of minors with “access to the content and interactions” of accounts maintained by their children, and…minors would be prohibited from using social media between the hours of 10:30 p.m. and 6:30 a.m…The bill would also authorize a[nyone, including bureaucrats]…to sue social media companies for [supposed] violations…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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Federal prisons…[are] unwilling to get people the medical care they need.  –  Kevin Ring

Stalkers in Blue

Sleeping with a cop is one of the most dangerous things a woman can do:

A [New Jersey cop]…was arrested…[for] stalking and harassing his ex-girlfriend for over a month after they broke up…Erich A. Bennett…and the woman were in a brief dating relationship that she ended in late November 2022.  On Dec. 5, he showed up unannounced at her home and threatened her…She then blocked him from contacting her electronically and installed security cameras on the exterior of her home.  On Jan. 8, [she] began receiving harassing and threatening messages via social media from an online persona, which detectives connected to Bennett…The next weekend, on Jan. 14…he…[slashed] all four [of her] tires…keyed [her car, tore]…a flagpole…off the front of her house, and [stole] her Ring doorbell camera and two additional security cameras…Bennett also [used]…police databases on more than 30 occasions between October 2022 and January 2023 to find personal identifying information of the woman and [several of her friends]…

The Real World

Dr. David Ley schools his fellow therapists on the reality of sex work:

…As our society has become more open to discussions of sexual diversity, and more averse to sexual shame and stigma, more people are opening up to their therapists about their secret sexual lives and interests, including their past or present involvement in sex work.  Unfortunately, many therapists find themselves ill-prepared to effectively support their patients on these issues, and they may unintentionally harm or stigmatize their sex-working patients…Therapists often assume that anyone involved in sex work is doing so against their will and that the therapist needs to rescue them…sex work is not an inherent sign of pathology, attachment disturbance, substance abuse, or other problems…A sex worker’s job is not necessarily the reason the sex worker is coming to therapy.  They seek support for the same range of reasons that anyone else does…Not all sex workers are the victims of childhood sexual abuse, and for those who are, their abuse may have no direct relationship to their work in the sex industry.  This a version of the “damaged goods hypothesis”…

The Pygmalion Fallacy (#1208) 

Computer-generated female images are replacing “sex robots” in prohibitionist fantasies:

[Prohibitionists and clueless young men on Twitter fantasized that] OnlyFans models could be in trouble [from]…hyper-realistic AI models…threatening to take over the adult platform and put them out of work.  A[n image of]…four almost identical [Barbie-like female characters]…spark[ed the fantasies among people who believe]…OnlyFans [is about pretty pictures rather than the fantasy of connection to a beautiful woman]…

It’s sad to see how many people still want to believe that actual sex workers with individual human personalities could be replaced by plastic dolls or computer-generated images without minds.

Torture Chamber (#1292)

This would be a real improvement if the conditions for release were objective rather than subject to the whims of those in power:

Federal inmates suffering from unconstitutional medical neglect could get a new avenue for relief under changes being proposed by the U.S. Sentencing Commission…[which] would broaden compassionate release, a policy that allows incarcerated people who are terminally ill or severely debilitated the mercy of spending their remaining days at home…the amendment would expand the qualifying circumstances…to include…people “suffering from a [serious] medical condition that requires longterm or specialized medical care…that is not being provided in a timely or adequate manner”…prisons and jails across the country regularly subject people to atrocious and humiliating neglect…The First Step Act of 2018…allow[ed] judges [rather than sadistic prison bureaucrats] to consider petitions…But…the [allowable]…reasons…were narrowly defined and did not include medical neglect…

To Molest and Rape (#1301)

When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time“:

…a [typical and representative Missouri cop named Seth P. Wilkins who was]…convicted 10 years ago of possessing child pornography….was charged Jan. 18 with…sexual abuse of a 9-year-old girl…[he was convicted of] the [child porn] charge Nov. 19, 2012, in a plea agreement [for]…a suspended seven-year term with five years on probation…[from which] he was discharged…in August 2015…

To Molest and Rape (#1307)

Just a few more isolated incidents:

A…Dorset [cop named Ravi Canhye] has been charged with [eight sexual offences including] two counts of rape…A…spokesp[ig oinked out a lot of boilerplate obfuscation, emphasizing that he was not wearing his magical clown costume while committing the rapes]…

The Mob Rules (#1307)

Laws enabling nuisance lawsuits will keep multiplying until they’re ruled unconstitutional:

The Mississippi Senate Judiciary…committee approved a bill…that would [demand] age verification for any site that [hosts porn.  Politician]…Nicole Boyd…would exempt news gathering organizations and internet service providers from liability…[but]…is [otherwise] modeled after the Louisiana legislation…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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First let’s distinguish between a sin and a crime.  –  Pope Francis

The Immunity Syndrome (#833)

The tone of this article is remarkably restrained; it doesn’t even use the phrase “super gonorrhea”:

Public health [bureaucrat]s says they have found two cases of gonorrhea that appear to have reduced susceptibility to every kind of antibiotic available…It’s the first time strains of gonorrhea this resistant to antibiotics have been identified in the United States…Dr. Jeffrey Klausner…[of USC said] “It’s a reminder that gonorrhea is becoming…increasingly hard to treat…We haven’t had new antibiotics to treat gonorrhea for years and we really need a different treatment strategy”…

Providing a proper sex education to teenagers, the primary vectors for STI transmission in the US, might be a good start.

Peeping Toms (#871)

There is nothing contradictory about this:

Pope Francis criticized laws that criminalize homosexuality as “unjust,” saying God loves all his children just as they are and called on Catholic bishops who support the laws to welcome LGBTQ people into the church.  “Being homosexual isn’t a crime,” Francis said…and he himself referred to the issue in terms of “sin”.  But…these…comments …are the first uttered by a pope about such laws…are…consistent with his…belief that the Catholic Church should welcome everyone…Francis’ remarks come ahead of a trip to Africa, where such laws are common, as they are in the Middle East.  Many date from British colonial times or are inspired by Islamic law…

Droit du Seigneur (#1183)

Better cops escape consequences than this ugly narrative be reinforced yet again:

A Virginia jury rejected claims by a Costa Rican woman who accused a police chief and three o[ther pig]s of conspiring to protect a sex-trafficking ring…[the] jury in[stead]…found that the woman was not a victim of trafficking but a [mundane] sex worker….Police Chief Edwin Roessler…[and his underlings] James Baumstark…Michael Barbazette and Jason Mardocco….protected the [escort service, but the claims of] human trafficking…were [bogus and largely followed the typical script, including]…claim[s]…of…17 [clients] a day and that Sanchez kept…her passport…Defense lawyers pointed out that the woman [repeatedly] traveled [home] to Costa Rica between 2010 and 2015 and returned to Sanchez each time….”She’s willing to say whatever it takes to get what she wants in that moment,” [said defense lawyer] Kim Baucom…

The jury reached the same conclusion I did the first time I heard the story, and I wrote about people credulously accepting this woman’s claims in “Taking the Bait“.  While I certainly sympathize with wanting to see cops suffer consequences for their behavior, the “sex trafficking” paradigm will never die as long as opportunists are rewarded every time they invoke it.

To Molest and Rape (#1257)

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

[A London cop named] Hussain Chehab…pleaded guilty to [repeatedly molesting teenage girls the government had paid him to harass at school, and also]…making [sexual] photographs of [his victims]…Chehab’s offending came to light in July 2021 when the family of a 16-year-old girl raised concerns…that…he…was [molesting their daughter]…The…offences [we]re…all the more [predictable because]…Chehab was [paid by the government to lurk] in…schools [to spy on, harass, and terrorize the students]…

It’s sad that the UK has adopted the school-to-prison pipeline from the US.

The Last Shall Be First (#1299) 

It looks like Florida is aping Texas again:

…Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is asking state universities for the number and ages of their students who sought or received gender dysphoria treatment, including sex reassignment surgery and hormone prescriptions…Why he’s conducting the survey wasn’t completely clear[, but Texas did something similar last summer]…

The Last Shall Be First (#1304) 

Trans people have become another canary in the civil rights coal mine:

…Legislation in Oklahoma and South Carolina would make it a felony to provide hormonal or surgical transition treatment to transgender people younger than 26…Other bills in both states, and in Kansas  and Mississippi, would ban such care up to age 21.  And bills in more than a dozen states would ban it for minors, which Arkansas was the first to do in 2021…A bill in Mississippi…would define sex as immutably set at birth, denying transgender identities under state law.  A measure in West Virginia would define “any transvestite and/or transgender exposure, performances or display” as obscene, potentially outlawing transgender people’s presence around children…

Unsafe for Human Consumption (#1306)

The way local media parrots copaganda in the face of clear evidence of its foolishness is utterly pathetic:

The Illinois State Police…has tested…substance[s that triggered panic attacks in a gang of screws, and]…the test came back negative for narcotics or hazardous materials…[despite] the [clowns wasting] Narcan…[and whining all the way to the] hospital…Everyone [who had a panic attack]…has been discharged [and the substance they thought was magical insta-fentanyl]…was [in fact] baby powder…the…department [of locking humans in cages] has [tried to save face by bloviating nonsense about]…further investigation [being] needed to explain the…symptoms [of panic attack]…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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A right does not, as a practical matter, exist without any remedy for its enforcement.  –  Justice Elissa Cadish

The End of the Beginning (#1197) 

It’s horrifying that a court order was required to stop the government from trying to punish people for being unable to do the literally impossible:

A rule that Attorney General Merrick Garland issued in 2021…requires people to do things that are plainly impossible.  If they have been convicted of a sex offense, they must register with their state, even when the state neither requires nor allows them to do so.  They also must supply the state with all the information required by federal law, even when the state does not collect that information…someone [unable] to meet those requirements…who travels outside his state can be charged with a federal crime punishable by up to 10 years in prison.  At trial, the defendant has the burden of proving that he was unable to register “as required”…That Kafkaesque situation, a federal judge in California [has] ruled…violates the constitutional right to due process…The case, John Doe v. Department of Justice, illustrates the perverse consequences of the federal government’s attempt to identify and track sex offenders through detailed registration requirements that often conflict with state law…

Panopticon (#1212)

Useful idiots keep providing government with excuses for Orwellian levels of surveillance:

A bill…in the Mississippi Legislature would require public schools and postsecondary institutions to install video surveillance cameras all over their campuses.  The bill would require that the cameras also record audio and that they be installed in classrooms, auditoriums, cafeterias, gyms, hallways, recreational areas, and along each facility’s perimeter.  Further, it would permit [even adult] students’ parents to view live feeds of classroom instruction…the bill’s sponsor…Stacey Hobgood…[belched out the catchphrases] “critical race theory”…and…”accountable”…[to justify creating a stifling] atmosphere of suspicion and distrust [across every school in the state]…

Robocops (#1249)

Since SCOTUS refuses to slay this monster of its own creation, state courts will need to do the job for it:

…the Nevada Supreme Court [has] unanimously ruled that victims of wrongful searches and seizures have the right to sue the responsible government officials.  Just as critically, the court firmly rejected qualified immunity as a potential defense against those lawsuits.  The court’s twin holdings will better ensure that government officials can actually be held accountable for their misconduct…

Thought Control (#1268)

I never would’ve thought my first profession would become as much a target for authoritarians as my second:

Books containing [what politicians vaguely term] “sexually explicit” content…would be banned from North Dakota public libraries under [newly-proposed] legislation…the measure…proposes up to 30 days imprisonment for librarians who refuse to remove the [censored] books…In addition to banning depictions of “sexual identity” and “gender identity,” the measure specifies 10 other things that library books cannot visually depict, including “sexual intercourse,” “sexual preference” and “sexual perversion,” — though it does not define any of those terms.  The proposal does not apply to books that have “serious artistic significance” or “materials used in science courses,” among other exceptions…

Presumably, the “serious artistic significance” would be determined by politicians, which is a bit like asking a panel of tone-deaf 11-year-olds to discuss the relative merits of Bach cantatas.

The Vultures Descend (#1273)

Calling politicians on their hypocrisy is an interesting strategy:

A group of religious leaders who support abortion rights [has] filed a lawsuit…challenging Missouri’s abortion ban, saying [politicians] openly invoked their religious beliefs while drafting the measure and thereby imposed those beliefs on others who don’t share them.  The lawsuit…is…among nearly three dozen post-Roe lawsuits that have been filed against 19 states’ abortion bans…and…was…filed on behalf of the faith leaders by Americans United for Separation of Church & State and the National Women’s Law Center…Lawsuits in several other states take similar approaches.  In Indiana, lawyers for five anonymous women…and…Hoosier Jews for Choice have argued that state’s ban infringes on…Jewish teaching that a fetus becomes a living person at birth and…Jewish law prioritizes the mother’s life and health…In Kentucky, three Jewish women sued, claiming the state’s ban violates their religious rights under the state’s constitution and religious freedom law…

Presumption of Guilt (#1288)

Another step toward total financial surveillance:

…if you’ve sent money across American borders…Big Brother is likely watching.  In what began as an Arizona-led effort before going nationwide, a not-so-independent nonprofit organization has been indiscriminately compiling sensitive financial information and making it available to [cop shops and spook houses] across the country…ACLU…has published more than 200 documents revealing details of the program which fed a vast database of sensitive data…run by an organization called the Transaction Record Analysis Center…The surveillance dates to 2006, when Arizona’s attorney general sought details from Western Union about money transfers to and from the Mexican state of Sonora…[the ensuing] legal battle [was] settled in 2010…and…TRAC was established in 2014 as a nominally independent repository for intercepted financial records…in 2019…DHS took over funding TRAC and…[began] compel[ling] financial disclosures with…a type of subpoena…

Blunt Instrument (#1296)

This will continue for as long as the voters allow it to:

Attorney General Daniel Cameron has announced [a scheme]…to [use “]human trafficking[” as an excuse to carry out violent pogroms] in Kentucky by targeting “illicit massage businesses”…[Cameron plans to threaten] landlords and [spread racist propaganda] to [encourage useful idiots to snitch on migrant-owned] businesses that Cameron [wanks to pedophilic fantasies about]…Cameron is…running for governor this year…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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There [is] a culture of impunity for…police officers.  –  Harriet Wistrich

Divided We Fall (#736)

Contrary to popular belief, “conversion therapy” has never been banned anywhere in the US; most states merely restrict its use to sex workers and clients:

[Politicians] in Wisconsin voted to strike down a ban on [using] conversion therapy [against LGBT people]…effectively making the practice legal.  Conversion therapy is a broad term that can describe many practices that generally involve trying to force…sexual…[minorities] to [stop whatever sexual practices those with power over the victims dislike].  The methods involved in these practices are highly discredited by medical professionals, and those who have been victims of conversion therapy have described it as torture

The Widening Gyre (#928)

People interpreting a domestic violence incident as “sex trafficking” is basically a microcosm of the whole moral panic:

Bangor [Maine] police sa[id a] kidnapping [from a Target parking lot] is not part of a larger human trafficking ring, despite claims to the contrary on Facebook…Colby Cooper…arrived at the store with the unnamed woman[, but when she broke up with him while there] he…forced [her]…into a U-Haul rental van…[and] fled…police spotted Cooper a short time later…and…arrested [him]…The department cautioned people to refrain from believing everything they read on Facebook…

To Molest and Rape (#1212)

Just a few isolated incidents:

A [London cop] who used his [job] to put fear into his victims has admitted [to] dozens of rape[s] and [highly abusive] sexual [relationships with] 12 women.  David Carrick…who met some victims through dating websites, pleaded guilty to 49 offences across two decades.  The [police bureaucracy] has apologised after it emerged he had [been reported for rape]…nine [times]…between 2000 and 2021.  A [boss cop attempted to downplay the pervasiveness of rape among cops by uttering the obvious lie that] his [behavior] was “unprecedented in policing”…His offences spanned 2003 to 2020 and most took place in Hertfordshire, where he lived.  [In his abusive relationships] Carrick…would control what the women wore, what they ate, where they slept and even stopped some of the women from speaking to their own children…

Thou Shalt Not (#1227)

Prohibitionism is a dangerous mental illness:

Bringing cake into the office should be seen as being as socially unacceptable as inflicting passive smoking on your colleagues, Britain’s top food [nanny]…said…[Nutrition cultist] Susan Jebb…said it was not enough to rely on…personal [responsibility and free choice]… “If nobody brought in cakes into the office, I would not eat cakes in the day, but because people do bring cakes in, I eat them.  Now, OK, I have made a choice, but people were making a choice to go into a smoky pub”…

The Punitive Mindset (#1243) 

If there’s anything narrower and meaner than the mind of a prison official, I’m not sure what it might be:

Florida’s prison system has banned more than 20,000 books — the most tracked in the U.S., according to a new study from The Marshall Project…[which] published a database…of about 54,000 titles banned by [human-caging bureaucrats] in 18 states with such records…Most prison systems ban…books containing content related to violence, [criticism of the carceral system], sex or nudity…But…other books banned in Florida prisons include: adult coloring books, French language textbooks, [and] How to Make Money in StocksIn Texas, The Color Purple is banned, while Dungeons and Dragons books are prohibited in Michigan

Guinea Pigs (#1260) 

Alabama discovers the secret to detecting “sex trafficking” in ordinary escort ads: label everything “sex trafficking” and arrest all the women:

Computer modeling developed by…University of Alabama…collects data from online sex ads…[in order to] help…[cops] locate…and arrest s[ex workers]…the modeling has…[led to] over 100 arrests since February 2021…

The article goes on to dredge up lots of moldy decade-old “sex trafficking” propaganda, including the claim that half of all sex workers are children; “Human trafficking is the second-largest criminal enterprisebring[ing] in as much as $150 billion…a year“; the claim that someone other than gibbering idiots calls I-20 the “sex trafficking superhighway“; and the utterly-absurd fantasy of “6,000 human trafficking victims per day in Alabama alone.

The Mob Rules (#1303)

Laws enabling nuisance lawsuits will keep multiplying until they’re ruled unconstitutional:

Utah may follow Louisiana’s lead by requiring residents who want to access pornographic websites to verify their age first….[pro-censorship politician] Todd Weiler…[bloviated a lot of nonsense and dismissed] privacy concerns…[which should come as no surprise given that he’s the jackass who sponsored the bill]…declar[ing] pornography a [“]public health crisis[“ and also tried to establish a state internet censor]

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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We did prohibition, it didn’t work.  –  George Koob

Pyrrhic Victory (#1189)

“Criminality” is a status defined entirely by the State:

…the head of [the] Iranian…morality [police] said in a September interview that [facial recognition] technology would be used “to identify inappropriate and unusual movements,” including “failure to observe hijab laws”…[activists] monitoring the ongoing [protests] have noticed that some people…are confronted by police days after an alleged incident—including women cited for not wearing a hijab…the pattern indicates face recognition is already in use…women…[are also] receiving citations in the mail for hijab law violations despite not having [been physically accosted by a cop]…Women deemed violators of the law can lose access to banks, public transportation, and other essential…services.  Repeat offenders can spend years in jail or in [“re-education” camps]…

Virtual Imperialism (#1202)

Beijing’s campaign to silence Chinese people outside China is becoming more aggressive:

…a Chinese outpost [in New York] conducting police operations without jurisdiction or diplomatic approval — one of more than 100 such outfits around the world…[was searched by] F.B.I. counterintelligence agents…last fall…Irish, Canadian and Dutch officials have called for China to shut down police operations in their countries…[but] the F.B.I. raid is the first known example of the authorities seizing materials from one of the outposts…The Chinese…[claim] the outposts…are staffed by volunteers who help Chinese nationals perform [benign] tasks like renewing their driver’s licenses back home.  But Chinese state news media reports…cite police and local Chinese officials by name describing the operations…[as “]overseas police service centers[” which engage in]…“collecting intelligence” and solving crimes abroad without collaborating with local officials…Some of those online articles have been deleted recently as Western officials and human rights groups have called attention to the police offices…[which are] part of Beijing’s larger drive to keep tabs on Chinese nationals abroad, including dissidents…

A Moral Cancer (#1260)

Crypto-moralists want people to believe they could live forever by simply eliminating every single pleasurable activity from their lives:

After decades of confusing and…contradictory [claims by crypto-moralists]…the[y’re now claiming to be really really right this time when they claim]…even small amounts of alcohol can have health consequences…When experts talk about the dire health consequences linked to excessive alcohol use, people often assume that it…[means excessive] alcohol use…But th[at’s not good enough for puritans, who want the gullible to be afraid of even]…moderate consumption…the [ever-changing] U.S. Dietary Guidelines…[now] recommend…[no] more than two drinks a day for men and…one drink a day for women…[but] the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention…[which is well known for the consistency of its claims and “]recommend[ations” says…if you abstain [most of the time]…and have two or three drinks…on[ce in a while it still]…count[s] as excessive consumption [and God will smite you with cancer]…

Property of the State (#1293)

Universal criminality provides many avenues for State violence:

Alabama’s attorney general [Steve Marshall] said he could prosecute women who take abortion pills, despite language in the state’s new abortion ban that ensures it won’t be used against people who receive abortions…That state’s law against “chemical endangerment” of a child was originally passed to punish people who exposed children to meth labs.  But it’s been used to prosecute numerous pregnant women accused of taking drugs, including marijuana alone…Since abortion pills are now an illegal drug in Alabama…Marshall’s statement doesn’t seem like an empty threat at all…

Opting Out (#1295) 

The UK’s decade-long campaign to censor the internet has taken a mindlessly-carceral turn:

Nearly 40 [politicians are demanding]…the [long-debated] Online Safety Bill…[include] an amendment that would give Ofcom, the communications watchdog, extra powers to prosecute tech bosses and hold them criminally liable for breaches of their [newly-invented “duty”] to protect children [from vaguely-defined “harms”]…

The Cop Myth (#1303)

Sleeping with cops isn’t safe for men, either:

A [cop] running for mayor of Houston…was arrested…[for] assaulting her live-in boyfriend with her police baton and stun gun…Robin Williams…punched her boyfriend in the mouth and struck him with her…baton early Dec. 31 at their Houston home – four months after…beating him with the baton and using a taser on him…

Unsafe for Human Consumption (#1304)

Apparently, magic insta-fentanyl only affects cops:

Camden County [New Jersey bureaucrats bragged] that [cops]…arrest[ed] five men…[for] fentanyl and cocaine possession and manufacturing, [but] 11 [cops who raided them all had panic attacks when they saw the] fentanyl [their victims were handling without harm] and required medical treatment [to get them to stop crying, fainting and engaging in other histrionics]…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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Silicon Valley lobbyists are…trying to avoid the real debate: whether technology this dangerous should even exist.  –  Fight for the Future

Cooties

Anti-sexworker bigotry harms all women:

An Airbnb host was caught on camera threatening to “smack” a woman in the face and calling her a “prostitute” before telling her no one would believe her if she complained…Yet despite complaints to Airbnb and local police, the man has faced no sanction more than four months on…Airbnb claimed it had suspended the listing, but several others from the same landlord – including one in the same building – are still available to book as of 6 January.  The woman and her cousin…were staying at the flat in Somerset…[when] at the end of August they say they received a phone call from the landlord threatening to physically attack them unless they left…he…the[n]…let himself into the flat…threatened them again, made racist remarks and pinned one of them against the wall…He told them…“You are prostitutes operating from this apartment”…Both women deny…that they were doing sex work on the premises, saying they only had a few friends to visit during their stay…

Fallen Idol (#1052)

Probably not the outcome prosecutors expected:

Former adult film star Ron Jeremy is suffering from “severe dementia” and will be declared incompetent to stand trial on multiple charges of rape later this month…weeks before Jeremy’s trial was slated to begin last year, his defense attorney, Stuart Goldfarb, [report]ed…his client did not recognize him…mental health experts called on by both prosecutors and…defense…have determined…there is no evidence he is faking his symptoms…dementia is a progressive and degenerative illness from which Jeremy is unlikely to recover…the experts reached their conclusion based on a review of medical documents and interviews with Jeremy, his relatives and several…[screw]s who interacted with him while in [jail].  Some of Jeremy’s relatives apparently suspected he suffered from dementia before his 2020 arrest…Jeremy is likely to be placed in a state-run hospital…

Torture Chamber (#1098) 

Perhaps Alabama’s state bird should be the ostrich:

The Alabama Department of C[ramming Human Beings into Filthy Cage]s will no longer track the number of…deaths [in its cages] by month…the department ended [2022]…with 225 deaths…[Chris] England, a member of the prison oversight committee, says now is not the time for less transparency…He wants to…require them to report more often..the Governor’s Office…[claims less frequent reporting is actually “]more accurate[“]…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1135)

Cops really don’t care how many false positives these systems shit out:

Instead of enjoying a late Thanksgiving meal with his mother in Georgia, Randal Reid spent nearly a week in jail in November after he was falsely [accused of grand larceny] by Louisiana [cops on the basis of] facial recognition technology…Reid…[was] misidentified as one of three people who allegedly stole over $10,000 in Chanel and Louis Vuitton purses from a pair of shops via bogus credit card purchases…[and arrested] by…Georgia…[cops during a traffic stop]…“They told me I had a warrant out of Jefferson Parish. I said, ‘What is Jefferson Parish?,’” Reid recalled. “I have never been to Louisiana a day in my life…”

Rooted in Racism (#1151)

In Europe as in the US, the real humanitarians are fighting against racist “anti-trafficking” schemes:

Greek prosecutors…[are putting] humanitarians on trial for search-and-rescue efforts that are protected under international human rights law and Greek law…The [latest] trial is…against…Sarah Mardini…Sean Binder [ans 22 others]…is riddled with procedural flaws that undermine their rights to due process and a fair trial…“Greek authorities…are going after people for saving lives the authorities didn’t want them to save,” said Bill Van Esveld…[of] Human Rights Watch…prosecutors…split the misdemeanor charges from felony charges in the case so the misdemeanors could be tried before expiring under Greece’s five-year statute of limitations…The misdemeanor charges…include espionage and forgery…based on humanitarians’ efforts to identify migrant boats in distress…[while] the…felony case misrepresents…search-and-rescue…operations as human smuggling by a criminal organization…

The Last Shall Be First (#1246) 

The war on trans people has expanded to include drag queens:

Arkansas [politician] Gary Stubblefield…[has] filed a bill…that would classify drag performances as…”adult-oriented business,” along with escort agencies…adult book…or video store[s]… massage establishment[s, etc.  The bill would also restrict all]…adult-oriented business[es from] be[ing] located on public property or anywhere where a minor could [possibly] view [them]…

It would be remiss of me to fail to point out that this wouldn’t be a big deal if sex work weren’t so stigmatized; maybe the queer community should’ve supported sex worker rights as we’ve been urging them to do for the past 20 years.

Panopticon (#1295)

Why bother with license plate readers when fools will pay to be tracked?

A team of security researchers managed to gain “super administrative access” into Reviver, the company behind California’s new digital license plates which launched last [October].  That access allowed them to track the physical GPS location of all Reviver customers and change a section of text at the bottom of the license plate designed for personalized messages to whatever they wished…“An actual attacker could remotely update, track, or delete anyone’s REVIVER plate,” Sam Curry, a bug bounty hunter, wrote…Reviver is the sole provider of these plates, [which] are legal to drive nationwide, and…[cost] between $20 and $25 a month…Users can digitally update the lower section of their license plate to display different messages…[such as] “Go Team!”  An accompanying app can also update a user if their car moves when it is supposed to be parked…the license plate will then display the text “stolen.” Reviver promises “continuous rollout of new features,” including automatic toll payment, parking payment, roadside assistance, and vehicle diagnostics…Reviver [calls this tracking device]…“security” [which] offers “true peace of mind”…

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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There’s a continual commitment to using violence to control people and manage problems in this country.  –  Elizabeth Davies

The Truth About “The Truth About…”

Some psychopaths use moral panics to get attention at others’ expense:

A 22-year-old woman…[named] Eleanor Williams…[pretended] on Facebook…[that] she had been beaten and raped by [Muslim] men who took her to sex “parties” around the north-west of England.  The post, made…on 20 May 2020, prompted…more than 1,000 people [to] donate £22,000 to…her…and drove a sharp rise in racism…Curry house windows were smashed, beloved restaurants were boycotted and one Muslim takeaway owner was chased down the street by men who poured alcohol over his head…It also ruined the lives of those she falsely accused, who were spat at, ostracised and called “paedo” in the street…Wh[en] Williams…[made the] post…she had already been charged with making false rape allegations against four [other] men.  One of them, an 18-year-old man who had gone on a night out with her and friends, spent 10 weeks in prison…before police [bothered to] check…his alibi….[and] realised they had [arrested] him [for arguing] in [public] on the very night she first accused him of drugging and raping her…Williams had multiple phones she used to create a fictional web of abusers as well as fellow victims she created to corroborate her lies…[she concocted the fantasy] after watching [various “sex trafficking” propaganda movies and fakeumentaries, including]…the 2008 film Taken…Williams [even]…injur[ed herself]…with a claw hammer police found covered in Williams’s blood but absent of anyone else’s DNA…

To Molest and Rape (#1215)

It’s kinda nauseating to read this monster’s prattle about Jesus:

Dennis Wallace Perkins was sentenced to 100 years in [Louisiana] state prison…after the [typical and representative cop]…pleaded guilty to [several charges of rape and related crimes stemming from molestation and other violations of children he gained access to via]…his wife…Cynthia…[who allowed him to spooge into] batter [for cupcakes]…she then served to students at Westside Junior High School, where [she was]…employed as an English teacher…Perkins filmed himself making the revolting concoction.  Cynthia Perkins…[also] aid[ed] her husband in [raping and otherwise violating kids]…Perkins addressed the court…[claiming without evidence that] “Jesus Christ has forgiven me”…and…that…certain facts [which] “came to light in pre-trial motions”…would [somehow] have helped his case…

The Last Shall Be First (#1235) 

Another attempt to extend legal minority to 25 based in pseudoscience:

[A new] Oklahoma bill…proposed…by [politician] David Bullard…aims to prevent healthcare professionals from providing “gender transition procedures” to those…under 26…professionals administering [or referring patients to such]…care [c]ould be convicted of a felony…

See No Evil (#1270)

Let’s hope these opportunists get the same treatment as the Nirvana baby:

Olivia Hussey and Leonard Whiting were…teenagers…in the 1968 version of Romeo and Juliet, directed by Franco Zeffirelli.  The film was a hit and was nominated for four Academy Awards, but it also stirred controversy [among bluenoses] over a bedroom scene which included images of Whiting’s buttocks and Hussey’s bare breasts.  Now in their 70s, Hussey and Whiting filed a lawsuit in Santa Monica Superior Court…[hoping to cash in by] accusing Paramount of sexually exploiting them and distributing nude images of [young people who are now infantilized as] children.  The suit alleges that Zeffirelli — who died in 2019 [and is therefore unable to contradict their claims] — assured both actors that there would be no nudity in the film…but [later]…implored them to perform in the nude…[yet] the suit [also] alleges that…[they] were…filmed nude without their knowledge….They are seeking [a payday] “believed to be in excess of $500 million”…The lawsuit relies in part on a California law that temporarily suspended the statute of limitations for [mummified] claims of child sexual abuse

To Molest and Rape (#1281)

Most rapist New Orleans cops don’t do it by proxy:

…sexual violence by New Orleans [cops is]…an everyday practice of policing…on average, there is a complaint of sexual violence filed against an NOPD officer every 10 days…[and rapists are usually] allowed to resign without any investigation: of the 254 NOPD officers who left their job between 2019-2021, 90 percent had been reported for misconduct in the previous year…Of the 944 [thugs] currently employed by the NOPD, around 190 have at least one complaint of sexual and/or intimate partner violence. Of those…26 have two or more complaints, and 5…have three or more complaints.  The highest number of complaints for one [cop] still employed by the NOPD is 64…

The Cop Myth (#1297)

The death toll will continue to rise until policing as we know it now is abolished:

US law enforcement killed at least 1,176 people in 2022, making it the deadliest year on record for police violence since experts first started tracking the killings…Police…killed an average of more than three people a day, or nearly 100 people every month last year…including people fatally shot, beaten, restrained and Tasered…Only 370 (31%) involved…an alleged violent crime…What’s more, in 32% of cases last year, the person was fleeing before they were killed, generally running or driving off…Black residents were three times more likely to be killed by US police than white people. The inequality is particularly severe in some cities, including Minneapolis where police have killed Black residents at a rate 28 times higher than white residents, and Chicago, where the rate was 25 times higher…

Unsafe for Human Consumption (#1299)

If you didn’t foresee where this was going, you haven’t been paying attention:

The New Hanover County [North Carolina] Sheriff’s Office has charged a man with assault with intent to kill or seriously injure after [cops fantasized that he “]expos[ed” them]…to a “dangerous opioid drug.”  Lewis Drayton…attempted to throw drugs out of his vehicle and [when three little pigs saw this they panicked]…causing [one of the brave heroes to faint]…the Sheriff’s Office is awaiting lab testing to determine what the substance was…The charges follow a string of incidents over the last few years in which law enforcement across the country have claimed exposure to fentanyl has caused symptoms which…don’t line up with the drug’s effects.

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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We have the right to be safe at work just like anybody.  –  Cherida Fraser

To Molest and Rape

This is brazen even by cop standards:

An [Alabama cop] pulled over a woman before kidnapping and [rap]ing her [at gunpoint]…Joshua Davidson…is facing federal charges…since…[the] Jan. 30, 2020…[attack]…prosecutors filed a motion asking the court to detain Davidson…[because] he is “a flight risk and danger to the community”…[having] previously fled…to New Hampshire…in 2020…However, the court denied the prosecution’s motion [because cop]…

Down Under (#876)

In the US, the government would’ve “helped” by prosecuting the victims:

…John-Paul Pohe…filmed 14…sex [workers in session] and went on to face 17 charges of making an intimate visual recording…Pohe was also sentenced for the repeated rape and sexual violation of a young girl…he [also] filmed the [rapes] and kept the footage on his phone…le[ading] to hi[s] being caught…Pohe recorded the [women] – three of wh[om] he recorded twice – without…consent between September 2021 and April this year at four different brothels around the Wellington region…he [would] put his phone in one of his shoes at the end of the bed, to covertly capture the [act].  The discovery of the recordings led to identifying the women, [none] of whom had [any] idea they had been filmed…In each video the[ir]…faces are visible…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1065) 

This is only the beginning:

Kelly Conlon and her daughter [went] to New York City the weekend after Thanksgiving as part of a Girl Scout field trip to Radio City Music Hall to see the Christmas Spectacular show.  But…Conlon was…identified [by a facial recognition system]…security guards approached her right as he got into the lobby…and…kicked her out…she [i]s an attorney…with the New Jersey based law firm, Davis, Saperstein and Solomon, which for years has been involved in personal injury litigation against a restaurant venue now under the umbrella of MSG Entertainment…”This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment on adversaries who would dare sue MSG in their multi-billion dollar network,” said Sam Davis, a partner at the firm…Other firms have sued over being blacklisted.  Conlon said she thought a recent judge’s order in one of those cases made it clear that ticketholders like her “may not be denied entry to any shows”…

Torture Chamber (#1267)

Where “alleged” is used to mean “endemic”:

For five decades, [young people condemned to] Los Angeles County [prison] camps and [cage stacks] have suffered repeated sexual assaults at the hands of [screws and] probation…officers, according to a lawsuit filed by nearly 300 [victims]…The…suit, involving 279 plaintiffs, follows two lawsuits filed earlier this year [by] 70 women…[who] were sexually assaulted [in]…other…facilities. [Screws]…not only [raped and] abused teenage girls, but also…boys…

Stalkers in Blue (Rapist Roundup)

Cops are sexual predators who often specifically target traumatized women:

Rachel Wilks was just 15 when…[she was] assaulted by a family member…[Victoria cop Jayden] Faure [started] grooming…[her via text and Snapchat and] also checking the details of one of her family members on the police [“]LEAP[“] database without any legitimate reason…[at least] 178 [cops] have…misuse[d]…LEAP in the past five years…[only] 65…were disciplined, and…Faure…was…the only o[ne of them] to be convicted…

Do As I Say, Not As I Do (#1292)

It’s always lovely to see them feeding on each other:

A…[typical and representative Florida cop named] Jarrod Eldridge was arrested…[for interacting with] a…coworker…[fantasy role-play]ing as a 14-year-old girl named Jenny…Eldridge…[and the other wanker] exchanged dozens of messages, and Eldridge sent a photo of himself…

To Molest and Rape (#1298)

They’ll use any dodge to avoid saying “cop”, especially when the victims are literal babies:

A [typical and representative] Florida [cop]…received 60 years in prison for sexually abusing children on video.  Scott Matthew Yotka…videotaped himself abusing two children and distributed it over the internet, according to…an…FBI agent…[who was pretending to be a fellow]…molest[er]…The FBI agent asked Yotka how he kept the kids quiet about the abuse, and he responded, “they are young and don’t talk”…Yotka a[lso confessed]…he was an administrator on a social media for people who like “little kid things, incest fetishes and animal things”…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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