September 21, 2005

A War On Pornography

My thanks to Jewish Atheist for tipping me off this story in the Washington Post.

"The FBI is joining the Bush administration's War on Porn. And it's looking for a few good agents.

Early last month, the bureau's Washington Field Office began recruiting for a new anti-obscenity squad. Attached to the job posting was a July 29 Electronic Communication from FBI headquarters to all 56 field offices, describing the initiative as "one of the top priorities" of Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales and, by extension, of "the Director." That would be FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III."

I am more than a little aggravated by this, but before I mention why let's take a look at some more of the story.
"The new squad will divert eight agents, a supervisor and assorted support staff to gather evidence against "manufacturers and purveyors" of pornography -- not the kind exploiting children, but the kind that depicts, and is marketed to, consenting adults."
Ok, now we are going after consenting adults because we have no other priorities, nothing else is going on. Fortunately I am not the only one who feels this way.

"I guess this means we've won the war on terror," said one exasperated FBI agent, speaking on the condition of anonymity because poking fun at headquarters is not regarded as career-enhancing. "We must not need any more resources for espionage."

Among friends and trusted colleagues, an experienced national security analyst said, "it's a running joke for us."

A few of the printable samples:

"Things I Don't Want On My Resume, Volume Four."

"I already gave at home."

"Honestly, most of the guys would have to recuse themselves."

Federal obscenity prosecutions, which have been out of style since Attorney General Edwin Meese III in the Reagan administration made pornography a signature issue in the 1980s, do "encounter many legal issues, including First Amendment claims," the FBI headquarters memo noted."

Some of you are probably looking for more details on what this means, allow me to share some more information with you.

"Applicants for the porn squad should therefore have a stomach for the kind of material that tends to be most offensive to local juries. Community standards -- along with a prurient purpose and absence of artistic merit -- define criminal obscenity under current Supreme Court doctrine.

"Based on a review of past successful cases in a variety of jurisdictions," the memo said, the best odds of conviction come with pornography that "includes bestiality, urination, defecation, as well as sadistic and masochistic behavior." No word on the universe of other kinks that helps make porn a multibillion-dollar industry."

I haven't seen anything here that makes me think that the gov't has any business looking at any of this. If consenting adults want to engage in this behavior then that is there perogative. I don't understand what is sexy about bestiality or some of these other categories, but I don't have to. Unless you can show me how this is hurting people there is no reason for the gov't to do this.

Here is another selection for your review in which you see that Gonzales subscribes to the Meese philosophy.

"But Gonzales endorses the rationale of predecessor Meese: that adult pornography is a threat to families and children. Christian conservatives, long skeptical of Gonzales, greeted the pornography initiative with what the Family Research Council called "a growing sense of confidence in our new attorney general."

Congress began funding the obscenity initiative in fiscal 2005 and specified that the FBI must devote 10 agents to adult pornography. The bureau decided to create a dedicated squad only in the Washington Field Office. "All other field offices may investigate obscenity cases pursuant to this initiative if resources are available," the directive from headquarters said. "Field offices should not, however, divert resources from higher priority matters, such as public corruption."

Public corruption, officially, is fourth on the FBI's priority list, after protecting the United States from terrorist attack, foreign espionage and cyber-based attacks. Just below those priorities are civil rights, organized crime, white-collar crime and "significant violent crime." The guidance from headquarters does not mention where pornography fits in."

This just makes me shake my head and if you forgive me for being crude some of these men are in desperate need of a blow job or some other release. In the midst of war there is no reason that I can see that warrants this kind of attention to pornography that is provided by consenting adults fo consenting adults.

How about focusing on the schools and healthcare.

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7 comments:

Irina Tsukerman said...

Isn't bestiality harmful to animals?

dorothy rothschild said...

What they need to do is make it more difficult for children to have access to it. But you are right, in the context of what is going on in the world, however, I don't see why this is all of the sudden such a priority.

Jack's Shack said...

Irina,

I suppose it all depends on what kind of animal and what you are doing to or with it.

DR,

One of the things that concerns me about the Net is that it might be a way that my children are exposed to things that I do not want them to see, but that is my decision as a parent.

They certainly can do more to prevent the young ones from accessing it, but I prefer to retain my ability to make decisions about what is good/bad for my kids.

bornfool said...

(In my best Jack Webb voice) "Just the fucks, ma'am. Just the fucks."

Lil Bit said...

Here, here!
Are you a Libertarian, Jack?

Jack's Shack said...

Lejnd,

:)

Lil Bit,

Nope

Lil Bit said...

Coulda fooled me...