Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: A revolting piece of shit

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  • Sam F,

    Karma in hiphop ... is that a diss track be made towards the 2 journalist 'victims' and an accompanying video of 'entrapment by media' be made.

    Not sure why you're mounting the high horse today and calling Chip out on scare quotes, seeing as you're forever wrapping them around the word "victim" to back up your personal conspiracy theory about evil wimmin journalists.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1609 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Dexter seems genuinely subversive, unlike certain tryhard gangsta posers.

    Saw some bits of the Jim Moriarty doco last night - now there's a man making a real difference.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19740 posts Report Reply

  • Robbie Siataga,

    yeah Heather...havent really given lundy much thought, just maybe hes the good side of america.

    Started on series 4 but my source/broadband got canned :(

    Enough to see dex get domesticated and focus on home issues and get sloppy abroad...sound like Obama's america much ?

    imagine black operatives mental anguish, moral code and self torment. Dex was trained from within by his adopted 'forefathers' to do his work. Honestly theres so much you can equate to america personified with dex. I never liked him eh.

    killiing stangers in the name of whatever is still killing and in doing so you're removing the right for the future sons to atone for the sins of their father.

    Since Feb 2010 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Of course, by closing down the known businesses, you're only left with the unknowns, and not necessarily any closer to finding the real lawbreakers. I guess the hope is that in a place as small as Iceland, there are no secrets.

    What are the odds, though; am picturing a small country that decides to go 100% vegetarian. I bet you could sniff your way to a bacon speakeasy if you put your mind to it.

    I wasn't going to get into this, because it makes me feel like I've been wasting two years of commenting, but Jolisa, they'll move to out-call stripping. You know, the strippers who come to parties. Or private homes. Full of men who used to go to strip clubs, where there were bouncers, and crowds, and other strippers to back you up. Vast improvement, right?

    The porn will always be with us

    Yep, and that might not be a problem, except ideologically. (Warning: comments of usual 'comments on the internet' quality, though perhaps worth reading for the woman who says "anti-porn feminists have never claimed 'porn causes men to commit sexual violence against women'.")

    Law around the sex industry should surely be made in consultation with people who work in the sex industry, like it was here. And in case Julie Bindell is confused, that doesn't mean going into a strip club, looking at some strippers, and deciding they look unhappy, then leaving. You don't even treat children like that, only animals.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Wearne,

    Craig Ranapia:

    Fair enough.
    But due to Russells comment ,as I am not willing to take someone elses word on everything, I went and viewed it. Net effect is the content was viewed, may as well have been linked to. Lazily I get my current affairs from very few sources and would prefer it complete.
    Cheers for the link Russell. I hated it.

    Mt Maunganui • Since Sep 2008 • 6 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    The real question here is... censorship. Why did NZoA fund this tune if the lyrics were so jarring ? what does it say about artistic freedom and criteria for taxpayer funding ? Is it OK to walk/talk the darkside or does it all have to be flowers and honeybees blah blah blah and who earned the right to judge on our behalf ?

    I think you have made a point, in your usual inimitable fashion. I have to differ on the censorship angle mainly because this is one of those times when any censorship would by retroactive with the censor bowing to public opinion but NZoA may be harbouring a few red faces right now. Does it all have to be flowers and honeybees? Well look what we have for the Rugby World Cup, a bland innocuous song written on the other side of the world and performed by the local equivalent of Cold Play. Had Dirty Sesh substituted the violence as Dark/Evil for imagery of sporting prowess, faces gouged and thrust into the mud, the bone jarring tackles, neck wrenching scrum manoeuvres and general disregard for injury of your opponent we may have had a winner.

    but if any older men want to take me aside for some respect lessons them step up or step off and your credentials better be impeccable !

    Thanks for the offer but respect comes from understanding and the kind of respect we have here is respect for each other, not for the fist.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Robbie Siataga,

    Shot Chip...good luck ! Canadia eh ? Say hi to TyTy for me :)

    Hope you'se roll thru nelson soon. I'm keeping quiet in the boonies doing the house hubby thing at the mo.

    Maybe gonna hook up Lil Jah from wicked draw on teh dubstep tip. That bro has more talent than sesh could ever hope for. And also get active on the pasifikan community front again.

    Since Feb 2010 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Heather Gaye,

    Honestly theres so much you can equate to america personified with dex.

    Absolutely, but my point is that the show emphasises that the "renegade" ideal is.. well, considerably less than ideal. And I think reading "justification" rather than mere "exploration" of immoral behaviour into the show is kinda lazy. Just because some redneck on the show says the bay harbour butcher should keep up the good work doesn't make the show itself a ringing endorsement for vigilantism.

    Hmm...I wrote a stack of stuff about Season 4 in particular (which regularly re-iterates that he's not killing people purely for the good of society, and ultimately his behaviour has negative consequences), but I suspect you and I use different filtering software, so even if you'd seen it, you'd probably disagree.

    Morningside • Since Nov 2006 • 533 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Diseased Rascal...

    They got Al Capone through taxes in the end.

    so that's what they're calling syphilis these days,
    it's definitely taxing on the body and brain!

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7950 posts Report Reply

  • Robbie Siataga,

    NZoA may be harbouring a few red faces right now.

    Bout time i reiterated my call to sack Brendan Smyth then...

    http://movingthecrowd.blogspot.com/2010/03/nz-musician-on-derty-seshs-new-video.html

    ...he was a man for his times but that time has been and gone. Nothing worse than desperately trying to hold on to power for its own sake.

    and you'd hope the 'name supressed' artist gets blacklisted for vids now otherwise you'd be feeding his fetish by providing him with a new in to access fresh fans given thats the demographic he appeals and tries to appeal to.

    Since Feb 2010 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Jolisa,

    I wasn't going to get into this, because it makes me feel like I've been wasting two years of commenting, but

    No, thanks for picking it up, and of course you haven't wasted two years of commenting. Not your fault if I haven't read each one and/or agreed 100% with each.

    they'll move to out-call stripping. You know, the strippers who come to parties. Or private homes. Full of men who used to go to strip clubs, where there were bouncers, and crowds, and other strippers to back you up. Vast improvement, right?

    Well, I don't know. Rhetorical question, yes, I see that. But I really don't know. Speaking as a freelancer (in a slightly different industry, natch), I'm sure there are many ways to profit in business, and many ways to handle one's own management and security issues. In this case, I don't know.

    Law around the sex industry should surely be made in consultation with people who work in the sex industry

    But (and I'm not being specious here, really) isn't that like saying that laws around the fast food industry should surely be made in consultation with people who work in the fast food industry? If someone wants to keep their job at McDonald's because it's, at that moment, the only thing between them and the dole, but we have intercepted management sending other employees through the burger machine, haven't they sort of forfeited the right to a frank and open discussion about what works for them legislation-wise?

    I believe, but cannot be sure, that that's the call Iceland made in this instance, after one example too many of some pretty dodgy trafficking. Why negotiate with terrorists? </strategic exaggeration but only just>

    But you're talking about talking to the women, rather than the bosses, yes? I get that. Perhaps the Icelandic government would have come up with a different approach if they'd sat down with the women mentioned in the article I linked to (and we don't know that they didn't). But what? Government-run brothels? That's also been done - see Japan during the Occupation - and it's messy in its own way...

    No answers, just questions. As usual :-)

    Auckland, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 1472 posts Report Reply

  • Robbie Siataga,

    not killing people purely for the good of society, and ultimately this has negative consequences

    ...yeah like messed up soliders returning home after doing their duty and beyond in iraq ? killing has to be addictive and hardwired or we would have stopped by now.

    oh and screw the feelers...drunken wannabe rock n rollers, shoulda got Jordan Lucks new band. Maybe they can do the farewell song when we lose the world cup again :)

    'darlin i'll say good bye even though i'm blue'

    this is a good vid...

    ...by Ed Davis i think who also did Misfits of Science choice vids.

    Since Feb 2010 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    If someone wants to keep their job at McDonald's because it's, at that moment, the only thing between them and the dole, but we have intercepted management sending other employees through the burger machine, haven't they sort of forfeited the right to a frank and open discussion about what works for them legislation-wise?

    Seriously? A hundred women a year come to Iceland from overseas to work in the sex industry, and some of them may or may not be trafficked, nobody seems to know, and so every single sex worker has forfeited the right to have a say when their job is taken away from them by legislation?

    Also, how do you know why that person is working at McDonald's if you haven't asked them? Aren't you just making an assumption? Rather paternalistically?

    It seems to me to be simple pragmatism. The people working in the sex industry are the people who know the most about it. They know what will work for them, better than someone who's never seen or spoken to a sex worker possibly can.

    But what? Government-run brothels?

    Well, how about the system we have here? The one sex workers prefer to the much-vaunted Swedish model, again brought in without consultation with sex workers, and which British sex workers have steadily and fruitlessly opposed. The carrot - help with transition out of sex work, harm reduction, medical help, other employment - all that can be done without a stick which simply makes sex wokers' lives harder, and more effectively where sex work is legal. (There are now fewer prostitutes in Sweden, and fewer people using them, but the rate of violent attacks has risen dramatically.)

    I have pages of links which have never quite made it to a column. Try this one:

    Pye Jacobson, a founding member of Sex Workers and Allies in Sweden, who has been organising for sex workers’ rights since 1994, says that the Swedish laws have forced sex work underground, increasing the amount of pimping and middle-men. At a recent meeting on the proposed legislation, held in Parliament and sponsored by John McDonnell MP and the Labour Representation Committee women’s caucus, Jacobson said: “Now we have internet pimps, who arrange where we can put our ads for a ridiculous amount of money, and apartment pimps because we are not allowed to rent an apartment and work from it.”

    Perhaps most worryingly, she also claimed that sex workers were now less likely to report violence to the police, since this would inevitably entail an investigation into their working lives and result in the closure of the brothels where they worked or heavier policing of red light districts. Whereas under the old laws male clients would sometimes report cases of violence from other clients or pimps, now none of them are willing to risk arrest in order to look out for the girls whose services they use.

    And another perspective on Iceland.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    (There are now fewer prostitutes in Sweden, and fewer people using them, but the rate of violent attacks has risen dramatically.)

    If so, it aligns quite strikingly with Sweden's ultra-prohibitionist stance on drugs: use and supply have been somewhat suppressed, but drug-related deaths are increasing quite sharply, especially in comparison with the likes of Portugal.

    In short, harm to those ostensibly being protected has increased.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • richard,

    It seems to me to be simple pragmatism. The people working in the sex industry are the people who know the most about it.

    Just like people who work in the gambling industry know the most about it, so they are the first ones we should consult about regulating it?

    Bzzt. Thank you for playing.

    Or perhaps not?

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 268 posts Report Reply

  • Jolisa,

    Aren't you just making an assumption? Rather paternalistically?

    Maternalistically, you mean? And yes, of course I was making an assumption - an explicitly economic one - for the sake of making the argument as compelling as possible (need trumping want, in this case). Even if the hypothetical McDonald's worker simply enjoyed the job and would do it for free, if it was demonstrably a dangerous work environment, that preference would kind of be beside the point.

    It seems to me to be simple pragmatism.

    As opposed to utopianism, which is an equally valid approach to legislation. I guess I'm a bit of a utopian.

    The people working in the sex industry are the people who know the most about it.

    OK. But there are many different people working many different kinds of jobs in the sex industry, which is what I was getting at with the McD's analogy.

    They know what will work for them, better than someone who's never seen or spoken to a sex worker possibly can.

    (Golly, not including me in that last assessment, I hope?)

    Yes, of course - although, as above, not monolithically - and only up to a point. That point might be imagining radical systematic alternatives to the familiar setting in which they find themselves. Not a sex work thing; a human thing, which happens in any kind of fixed situation or institutional context that comes to seem inevitable, and to which only incremental fixes can be imagined.

    and so every single sex worker has forfeited the right to have a say when their job is taken away from them by legislation?

    Bad grammar in my original post: it was the management who had forfeited the right to a say; for the workers, in that hypothetical case, discussion was moot.

    Still, yes, in this case, if the workers haven't had a say, it's not because it's sex work or because they're women. Rather, because it's an industry that's been deemed so problematic in its current execution that the government, in its (possibly temporary, possibly flawed, but definitely considered) wisdom has decided, for the moment, to shut it down.

    See also whaling. Which has come and gone and come again.

    I saw the Feministing piece; I dunno. Nicely argued, but it followed the same rhetorical formula Deborah noted upthread. Indict a feminist initiative for failing to solve the entire problem at once: ergo, this feminist initiative has failed. See for example:

    A feminist victory, in my opinion, would be a highly regulated industry that made sure ... workers were paid good wages, were able to unionize, had full benefits, were able to set boundaries with customers and have those boundaries protected... that ensured that these immigrant women were not being brought to Iceland against their will.
    ... A feminist victory would mean access to jobs and economic opportunity that meant women had options other than strip clubs and sex work if they so chose.
    [...] Iceland, I commend you for elevating women to elected office, but this piece of your work is not a victory for my vision of feminism.

    I believe that the Icelandic initiative, while not corresponding to some "visions of feminism", is coming at the issue in good faith, from the other end. Harm reduction programmes and legal liberalisation concede the inevitability of sex work and seek to mitigate it. Iceland -- for better or for worse, for the moment, for the sake of argument, for a change -- dares to imagine a world that does not commodify sexuality at all. They're working on the second half of the "feminist victory" proposed by Miriam at Feministing; hoping that an egalitarian society will render the first half moot.

    Maybe it's doomed, but it's radical, and it's interesting, and I think it's worth discussing without foregoing any conclusions. And if, on reflection (e.g. if the Swedish data proves incontrovertible and persuasive) Iceland decides that it makes more sense to set up a "highly regulated industry", then that won't be a failure for feminism. Just a failure for a particular utopian version of it -- feminism itself not being a zero-sum game.

    Auckland, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 1472 posts Report Reply

  • Jolisa,

    Also, I found this part of the article about the beneficial societal effects of porn rather worrisome:

    There is no doubt that some people have claimed to suffer adverse effects from exposure to pornography—just look at testimony from women’s shelters, divorce courts and other venues. But there is no evidence it was the cause of the claimed abuse or harm.

    Huh? How come we take women's word for it in some cases (work conditions in a brothel, say) but not others (trauma at hands of porn-addicted or -inspired partner or abusive family member, say)? I'm really not clear on the distinction that's being made here, except that it seems a bit wishful.

    Auckland, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 1472 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    In short, harm to those ostensibly being protected has increased.

    And this matters to me more than any ideological viewpoint, and in fact it's what annoys me the most: the individual women who get ground up in the 'experiment'.

    Also, it turns out "taking a stand" for the good of all womanhood, so that everyone understands that Women are Not for the Taking has exactly the opposite effect: since the law change in Sweden, sexual violence crimes have increased by a third. That data is nearly a year old now, and would certainly have been available in the Icelandic debate as it has been in the English one.

    Just like people who work in the gambling industry know the most about it, so they are the first ones we should consult about regulating it?

    Bzzt. Thank you for playing.

    Richard, a woman from the NZ Prostitutes' Collective recently went to England and was on the winning team at the Oxford Union debate on prostitution. Or perhaps you'd like to consider Georgina Beyer's speech on the Prostitution Law Reform Act. But actually yes, if I wanted to know about the patterns of problem gamblers, what they have in common, what makes them stop a session, how you recognise them, croupiers are one of the groups I'd want to talk to. Why does that seem so insane to you?

    Indict a feminist initiative for failing to solve the entire problem at once: ergo, this feminist initiative has failed.

    Um, that's not what it's doing. It's challenging not the initiative itself, but the idea that the initiative is a feminist victory.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I'm really not clear on the distinction that's being made here, except that it seems a bit wishful.

    Okay... relating to my own experience and that of women I've read about, I believe this is the distinction. The argument is that blaming the porn lets the abuser off the hook. So if your partner is demanding that you perform a particular sex act and is prepared to force you to do it, how much does it really matter where he got the idea, and how much is the important thing that your partner is a massive, massive fuckwad? It's a counter to the "porn turns perfectly nice guys into arseholes" argument, which I'm not sure that anyone is making.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Just like people who work in the gambling industry know the most about it, so they are the first ones we should consult about regulating it?

    Bzzt. Thank you for playing.

    If you were regulating for their welfare -- which I believe is the claim in this instance -- then yes, you'd consult them. It would be irrational not to.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Jolisa,

    And yet earlier in this same thread, people are arguing - without much dispute - for a direct relationship between depictions of misogynist sexual violence, and the attitudes and possibly actions of those who watch it.

    Colour me deeply confused! (And also convinced, empirically, that a porny culture can indeed turn perfectly average guys into massive, massive fuckwads, both situationally and semi-permanently).

    Auckland, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 1472 posts Report Reply

  • richard,

    But actually yes, if I wanted to know about the patterns of problem gamblers, what they have in common, what makes them stop a session, how you recognise them, croupiers are one of the groups I'd want to talk to. Why does that seem so insane to you?

    Well, you said insane, not me :-)

    The broader point is that a society may decide it has a legitimate interest in minimizing activities like gambling or prostitution. And given that, while one might certainly consult croupiers or prostitutes, one wouldn't necessarily give their views a huge amount of precedence, if you had decided that you wanted to see their industry shrink substantially.

    If this discussion was about restricting the number of poker machines in bars, I suspect very few people here would be making passionate arguments about the rights of publicans to run their business as they see fit.

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 268 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Colour me deeply confused!

    I'm not saying I'm convinced by the argument, I was trying to explain what the argument was. Also, the usual "porn as monolithic", all the same, all straight, all misgynistic, which is simply not the case.

    But then you have to explain why, as the availability of porn goes up, sexual violence decreases. And this has proved true across a number of different cultures.

    I feel I should explain why I gave stats about Swedish sex worker attacks and didn't back them up. My very favourite site for this, a collective blog by Swedish sex workers in English, appears to have disappeared some time in the last couple of months. The data was not from attacks reported to the police, but had been collected by the Swedish equivalent of SWOP (the US Sex Workers' Outreach Program).

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Richard: what Russell said. Which I think might be my last word on the subject.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    The broader point is that a society may decide it has a legitimate interest in minimizing activities like gambling or prostitution. And given that, while one might certainly consult croupiers or prostitutes, one wouldn't necessarily give their views a huge amount of precedence, if you had decided that you wanted to see their industry shrink substantially.

    Which is an honest argument: that you are placing the welfare of society above those of the individual women.

    But, in this case, if the evidence does show that your individual women are more likely to suffer violence as a result of your actions, how much "precedence" do you give that? What kind of evidence would you be obliged to present for the benefits of your new policy, given that it involves a demonstrable cost in human lives?

    If this argument was about restricting the number of poker machines in bars, I suspect very few people here would be making passionate arguments about the rights of publicans to run their business as they see fit.

    One or two have in the past. But surely the point is that it isn't about something neat and tidy like that?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

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