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 2009: April-June

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25th May   

Updated: Sub Prime Moralists...

Sex Shop City
 

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After bringing the world to its knees via greed and excess, bankers have a moral whinge about lap dancing customers
Link Here

Leisure World Swiss banking giant UBS is fighting plans for a strip club at its own Leisure World complex in Southampton.

The new lap-dancing club would offer pole dancing classes until 9pm when strippers will provide adult entertainment until 5am for up to 140 customers.

But UBS fears the families and young adults could be deterred from visiting its restaurants and cinema.

UBS wants councillors to throw out a licence application citing other councils who have experienced an increase in crime and disorder.

It warns the club could attract potential public nuisances to the area such as unlicensed taxis, pimps and prostitutes.

And UBS claims the proposal would harm the development of children through the overt promotion of sexual activities.

Male and female dancers are already being recruited for the lap and pole-dancing club which would create up to 29 local jobs.

Southampton councillors will decide whether to grant a licence on Thursday.

Update: Licence Granted

25th May 2009. See article from thisishampshire.net

Plans to open a strip club have been given the green light by council chiefs. Glamour lap-dancing club, which will feature fully nude dancing, could open its doors at Southampton’s Leisure World complex in as little as two weeks’ time.

Committee chairman Cllr Brian Parnell said there was no legal reason to refuse the club permission.

 

7th May   

Offsite: No Sex Party...


Adult Video Universe

Adult Video Universe
 

Why Labour is prudish about sex in the UK
Link Here

Puritans When sex and politics collide, it is usually no more than an excuse for some good old-fashioned crudity, along with a hefty dose of journalistic double standards and, more often than not, ministerial embarrassment. How else to deconstruct the serious but essentially misguided furore over expenses-gate, in which it was revealed that Jacqui Smith had signed off expenses for home entertainment (serious breach) that also happened to feature some smuttiness (mostly trivial)?

However, recent developments in Australia, coupled with a serious Labour obsession with sex – quite distinct from gender – raise the question of whether the issue might not eventually find its way on to the UK political agenda as a vote-winner (or loser) in its own right.

...Read full article

 

3rd May   

Update: Any Old Nonsense...

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Used to ban lap dancing in Wood Green
Link Here  full story: Lap Dancing in London...Predictable nutter outrage throughout London

Charlie Browns A bid to host striptease and naked lap dancing in Wood Green was vetoed by Haringey Council supposedly because of the proposed club's proximity to schools.

The owner of Bar N22 in the High Road was told he could not offer adult entertainment, after just two objectors voiced fears it would harm the community.

Susan Garrad, a mum and playgroup volunteer of Noel Park, listed schools, churches and community groups near to the venue and said: I contend people will know what's going on and parents will then have to explain something they might not want to deal with until a child is older, or will have to lie to their children.

The licensing committee made the dubious ruling under relaxed licensing laws at Haringey Council's Civic Centre - opposite Bar N22, formerly known as Charlie Browns.

Varinder Kaur, service manager at a sheltered housing scheme, next door to Bar N22, said the plan would negatively impact on the home's 22 elderly residents. She ludicrously claimed: They're old, they're vulnerable, they will be isolated and living inside and there is a danger their grandchildren and children will not be visiting them. That is going to have an effect on their well being and health and safety, so we are concerned.

 

28th April   

Update: Passionless in West Ken...

Nutters win against lap dancing in West Kensington
Link Here  full story: Lap Dancing in London...Predictable nutter outrage throughout London

Lap Dancing Nutters who fought a long-running battle against plans for a lapdancing club are celebrating after the owners withdrew a legal challenge.

Residents near The Crescent bar in West Kensington were dismayed when owner, Passion Nights, applied to turn part of the venue into a strip club, ludicrously fearing kerb crawlers and prostitutes would be drawn to the area.

An appeal was launched at West London Magistrates' Court after councillors threw out the plans in November - but was finally withdrawn this week in the face of wide spread opposition.

Nutter leader Joe Carlebach said: Our concern was that a lap dancing club would bring more crime, especially with sex workers and kerb crawlers. It's also right next door to a library where my children go, and I don't want to have to explain to my four-year-old daughter what a lap dancing club is and why people are hanging around..

Ealing, Acton and Shepherd's Bush MP Andy Slaughter, who has been fighting alongside the residents, said: I am delighted by this outcome. I have put a lot of effort into the campaign - asking questions to the Home Secretary, petitioning locally, holding a public meeting and giving evidence at the licensing panel.

But the main credit must go to the thousands of individual protesters and the organising committee of residents. This is a textbook case of how to fight and beat commercial interests intent on destroying a local neighbourhood for private gain.

 

16th April   

Ministry of No Fun...

Vietnam proposing to ban dancing at karaoke bars
Link Here

Vietnam flag Forbidding dancing at karaoke bars is a new point in the draft regulations on cultural activities in Vietnam.

According to the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the regulations help: prevent and roll back the use of ecstasy and many social evils in cultural activities and public cultural services.

The ministry said that it is inconvenient for tourists that discotheques and karaoke bars are not allowed to stay open after 12 at night. The new rules permit karaoke bars and discotheques of five-star hotels in Hanoi and HCM City and of four-star hotels in other provinces to open until 2 in the morning. Dancing, erotic acts, prostitution, and drug us are banned at karaoke bars.

The new decree will take effect on September 1, 2009. The draft decree has been sent to local authorities, ministries and posted on the website of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the online version of the Culture Newspaper for comment until April 30, 2009.

 

11th April   

Offsite: Standard Deviation...

How the government uses dirty data to legislate morality
Link Here

Trafficking Bollox When it comes to sex and censorship, Government's insistence that laws are evidence-based is little more than hot air.

The statistics quoted in support of any given case are frequently misleading, partial, and - according to one expert in this field - subject to highly unethical collusion of interest between government and researchers.

From rape to lap-dancing, from internet harm to obscure sexual practices, evidence is used to back a narrow politicised agenda, rather than as a basis from which to develop policy.

...Read full article

 

5th April   

Update: Browns Frowns...

Nutters whinge about lap dancing in Wood Green
Link Here  full story: Lap Dancing in London...Predictable nutter outrage throughout London

Charlie Browns A venue that sparked nutter 'outrage' by offering pole dancing six years ago is now bidding to launch lap dancing in Wood Green.

The plan could see lap dancing at the former Charlie Browns nightclub in High Road, Wood Green. The venue now called Grand Palace and Bar N22.

Nutter organisations predictably 'fear' the proposal could bring trouble to the area.

Raj Doshi, chairman of I Can Care - a drop-in centre for elderly residents based in nearby Woodside House, said: It may bring in a lot of ugliness. To me a dance is a dance, but if it brings in other stuff - drugs, prostitution, the shadowy characters, for all these reasons I would prefer, if I had a tick box, not to have it.

Shilpa Desai, vice-chairwoman of I Can Care aid: I don't know how that's going to work because as it is they're scared to go out at certain times. I think this part of Haringey, there are lots of families with young kids, there is a council estate which has got a lot of young people and I don't think this is going to help them.

Woodside ward councillor George Meehan (Labour) said: We would prefer that it isn't successful. The last time people weren't very happy, so I can't see that they'll suddenly become happy. Wood Green shouldn't be any different to Crouch End or Tottenham, therefore we wouldn't expect anyone to be any more welcoming. I assume they will make their views known quite forcefully.

Residents can comment on the Grand Palace/Bar N22 application until Tuesday, April 14, by contacting Haringey Council licensing team on 020 8489 8232, or licensing@haringey.gov.uk.

 

5th April   

Updated: The Good, the Bad, and the Bollox...

Trafficking in Scotland is an over-hyped problem
Link Here

The Good:  Little evidence of widespread trafficking

Scottish Government logo Agencies have identified 79 alleged victims of human trafficking in Scotland between April 2007 and March 2008, most of whom were women said to be forced into prostitution.

But the only Scottish human trafficking case brought to the courts collapsed in 2007 due to a lack of evidence.

The government-published report pointed out there had been some successful human trafficking prosecutions in England and Wales, resulting in some of the largest sentences in Europe.

The Bad: Lack of evidence isn't going stop politicians claiming a widespread problem

See article from dailyrecord.co.uk

Foreign police could be drafted in to help Scots forces bring human traffickers to justice, a report said today. The Scottish Government report suggested police from victims' countries could be seconded to help local officers in a bid to tackle the problem.

Injustice Secretary Kenny MacAskill said: This new research shows the scale of the problem and highlights the importance of genuine multi-agency working to ensure that victims of trafficking are given the support they need and those exploiting them are brought to justice.

And The Bollox: There are 32,000 Trafficked Women in Britain

See article from guardian.co.uk

Trafficking Bollox Rahila Gupta, author of  Enslaved, The New British Slavery, claims in the Guardian today that there are at least 32,000 trafficked women in Britain. She writes:

"In Britain, it is estimated that 80% of the 80,000 women in prostitution are foreign nationals, most of whom have been trafficked".

Comment: Illiberal Liberals

3rd April 2009. Thanks to Alan

I never cease to be amazed by the way in which victim feminism makes this purportedly liberal newspaper so highly illiberal.

Gupta's piece is pretty typical. We have the "foreign = trafficked" myth. Then there's the inflated stats - 32,000 - or is it 80,000? - "trafficked" women.

Some time ago, Professor Julia O'Connell Davidson, who (a) is a real feminist and (b) knows what's she's talking about, exploded this bollox in a letter to the Guardian itself. O'Connell Davidson pointed out even the lower of these figures would amount to a number of traffickees larger than the entire workforce of Debenham's throughout the UK. Additionally, when she looked at the actual number of women found in raided brothels who said they had been trafficked as a proportion of all prostitutes in the establishments, she worked out that to arrive at the claimed figure of trafficked women there would pretty well have to be a knocking shop in every street.

Offsite: Red mist obscures red light statistics

5th April 2009. See article from guardian.co.uk by Belinda Brooks-Gordon

Price of Sex book Campaigners too readily accept inflated figures for trafficked women, but we must base our policy on evidence, not emotion.

To argue there is a universal truth about trafficking does science, policy and trafficked people a disservice. The figure of 80,000 sex workers (which included women, men and transsexuals) in the UK was first suggested in 1999 in a Europap-UK briefing paper. Despite its speculative nature and the author Hilary Kinnell's refusal to make claims beyond her data, the estimate of 80,000 has been widely reported as a firm figure, often applying only to women and often in the context of claims that the sex industry is expanding rapidly (which cannot be the case if the figure of 80,000 has remained the same for 10 years).

Herein lies the difference between Rahila Gupta, the legion of no doubt well-intentioned commentators on this subject, and serious academics. The academic body of work takes time, has to be reviewed and scrutinised and as a result the media often loses interest by the time a piece is published. The work will be debated in conferences and seminars and flaws are ironed out. Whereas the truth so confidently exhibited by Gupta, like Nick Davies's flat earth news stories, go from press release to press agency to newsroom to Home Office to press release and so on. The result of such hyper-inflation is policy that spreads resources too thinly sometimes missing the really needy; and over-zealous campaigning that criminalises clients, friends, maids and receptionists makes women less safe. When looking for a needle in haystack, it doesn't make sense to keep making the haystack bigger. We have reached a crisis of sorts. And at a time of crisis, when there is a desperation to find the right policy, then a return to the slow, steady grind of the academe is necessary.

...Read full article

 

1st April   

Object of Derision...

Nutters embarrass themselves whinging at Wildcats logo
Link Here
Coun Mohammed Iqbal with Rosie Robinson

   Councillor Mohammed Iqbal
with Rosie Robinson

Nutters want a sexy logo removed from a Leeds strip club opposite the city's town hall and art gallery.

The silhouette of a woman on all fours dressed in a cat costume is the branding for the Wildcats lapdancing club chain.

Nutters ludicrously claim the image is sexually provocative, offensive to families and unsuitable for the location opposite the town hall and art gallery.

Having succeeded in getting overtly sexual signs removed from several city centre lapdancing clubs, objectors claim the logo at the club on The Headrow is as offensive as pictures of naked women.

Rosie Robinson Boardman, spokeswoman for the Leeds Object campaign, said: It is quite clearly sexually overt and it's obvious this is a lapdancing club. This is a lovely, high profile area of Leeds, round the corner from the museum. You come to Leeds for a wonderful cultural experience at the town hall, art gallery or library, and you are slapped with the sex industry in front of you.

The law says clubs must not display outside their venues any photos or other images which indicate or suggest that striptease or similar dancing takes place on the premises. A council investigation concluded the catwoman logo was NOT offensive enough to be banned.

Nutters backed by Councillor Mohammed Iqbal are determined to get the decision overturned. Coun Iqbal said the council had been encouraging families to move into the city centre for many years but doing nothing in this case would have the opposite effect.

A spokesman for Wildcats Leeds laughed off the objections, saying it was further proof of people with too much time on their hands. We have operated in eight different towns for five years and it's genuinely the first time this issue has been raised. Do these people want Catwoman banned too? It seems a nonsense.

A Leeds City Council spokesman said: We investigated and requested the removal of signage from a number of lap-dancing establishments in Leeds. However, we did conclude that the signage at Wildcats did not contravene the licence conditions. We recognise that Object have principled objections to lap dancing. However, the activity is lawful where it is correctly licensed.

 

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