Saturday, October 31, 2009

It "White Ribbon Against Pornography Week"!

For the many of you who have probably failed to notice, its "White Ribbon Against Pornography Week", apparently coming to a close tomorrow. This event, sponsored by the ever-wonderful Morality in Media, is designed to spread "awareness" of the harms of pornography and renew the fight for the zealous enforcement of obscenity laws.

Over at Carnal Nation, Marty Klein posts some ideas of his own about spreading awareness of pornography issues this week, or whenever such a "white ribbon" campaign is declared. Interestingly, the anti-porn patrol have descended from the sky even on a sex-positive blog like Carnal Nation to "raise awareness" of the harms of pornography. Some of us on the other side have been countering such propaganda with simple facts, though I'm not so sanguine as to whether this will raise the "awareness" of the antis.

Another thought – perhaps there needs to be a week to raise awareness of the victims of obscenity laws.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Why the Zicaris Don't Belong in Jail

Here's an excellent piece from Reason.com that just about says it all concerning the absurdity of jailing people for offensive images while Hollywood liberals line up to defend a man guilty of committing heinous crimes against a minor:

bhttp://reason.com/archives/2009/10/27/in-defense-of-extreme-porn
Reason Magazine


In Defense of Extreme Pornography

Why Janet Romano and Rob Zicari have no business being in federal prison.

Greg Beato | October 27, 2009

In late September, as a controversial movie director spent the first week of her year-long sentence at FCI Waseca, a federal prison in Minnesota, Harvey Weinstein didn’t bother to circulate a petition demanding her release. Debra Winger didn’t issue a statement protesting the director’s incarceration and anticipating her next masterwork. Peg Yorkin, founder of the Feminist Majority Foundation, didn’t publicly wonder why the government had spent the last seven years trying to put the director in jail.

Maybe Janet Romano should have drugged and sodomized a 13-year-old. Or, at the very least, had better cinematic taste. Unlike Roman Polanski, Romano has never won an Oscar for Best Picture. In fact, the 31-year-old porn auteur, 
whose credits as a director include Pain and Suffering, I Love to Hurt You, Cannibalism, and Sexual Intrusive Dysfunctional Society 2, has never even won an AVN Award for Most Outrageous Sex Scene.

Still, you’d think many of the creative types rallying around Polanski would be equally sympathetic to Romano’s plight. Essentially, she’s in prison for rape, too—as is her husband, Rob Zicari. But as Whoopi Goldberg might have put it, 
the rape that landed them in the slammer wasn’t actually rape-rape. It wasn’t even ‘70s-style-libertine rape. Instead, it was movie rape, a scene enacted by consenting adults.

Zicari and Romano, known in the porn industry as Rob Black and Lizzy Borden, were the primary figures behind Extreme Associates, a production company, which, along with a few others, began pushing the boundaries of what the mainstream adult video industry depicted in the late 1990s.

Of course, it wasn’t just porn that was growing more extreme in those days—all pop culture was. It was the heyday of Marilyn Manson and Eminem, South Park, professional wrestling, Jackass, Fear Factor, World’s Wildest Police Videos, Girls Gone Wild, Tom Green, and most of all, the Internet, where websites like Rotten.com and Stileproject.com were assembling vast visual libraries of any taboo or depravity that could be digitized: gruesome crime and accident scene photos, animal snuff, people disfigured by bizarre medical conditions.

Along with everyone from NBC executives to computer nerds living in their parents’ basements, Zicari and Romano simply jumped into the fray. Hollywood slasher films chopped nubile teens into pieces, so why couldn’t they simulate similar antics in their own efforts? Hollywood reality shows featured contestants eating pig rectums for money, so why couldn’t they engage in their own gross-out stunts?

In their videos, female performers (and the occasional male one) were slapped, spat on, and verbally degraded. Rapes and murders were depicted. Vomit was vomited, then consumed again along with other bodily fluids. And of course there was explicit hardcore sex. Had Zicari and Romano stuck to just rape and murder, with some R-rated nudity to complement artful scenes of mutilation and dismemberment, as Hollywood does in movies like Hostel and House of 1000 Corpses, they could’ve avoided a lot of trouble. Likewise, had they focused on hardcore sex and kept the violence and puke out of it.

By mixing these various elements, however, they earned a 10-count indictment on obscenity charges in 2003. In the eyes of many in the adult industry, they’d brought this trouble on themselves. A year earlier, a PBS Frontline documentary on porn included shots of Romano filming simulated rapes and murders that the members of the Frontline crew found so disturbing they fled the set. At a time when anti-porn organizations were increasingly pressuring the Bush Administration to resume obscenity prosecutions against the adult porn industry—which had fallen by the wayside during President Clinton’s years in office—this was not exactly the kind of PR effort that mainstream adult companies like Vivid Entertainment and Wicked Pictures wanted to put out there. Nor was Zicari’s combative rhetoric appreciated. “We've got tons of stuff they technically could arrest us for,” Zicari told Frontline. “I'm not out there saying I want to be the test case. But I will be the test case. I would welcome that.”

In 2004, when I interviewed Zicari for a Reason article on the federal government’s newly energized campaign against the porn industry, he remained defiant. “This is the World Series, and they're the Boston Red Sox,” he exclaimed. “They're getting a chance that they haven't had in 9 billion years, and if they blow this, they can never come back. Because where can you go after a jury says there's nothing wrong with these movies? How do you go after a movie involving a husband and wife and the guy's wearing a condom? How do you get someone to go after that, when you couldn't even prosecute a tape where the guy comes in the girl's mouth, and then he fucking stabs her? This is their one shot, and they fucking know it.”

In January 2005, it seemed as if the federal prosecutors had whiffed—U.S. District Judge Gary Lancaster dismissed the charges against Romano and Zicari, ruling that federal obscenity laws were unconstitutional because they violated one’s “right to sexual privacy, which encompasses a right to possess and view sexually explicit material in the privacy of one’s own home.” Later that year, however, an appeals court reversed this controversial ruling, and the government resumed its case against the couple.

As the case dragged on, it attracted less and less attention, ultimately becoming the the judicial equivalent of the celebrity who you thought died years ago but is actually quite extant. And while the federal government never really ramped up its crusade against the porn industry enough to satisfy the anti-smut forces or terrify Playboy subscribers, it did continue to intensify its efforts. In 2005, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales expanded the government’s anti-obscenity efforts by creating the Obscenity Prosecution Task Force, which, he explained, would be staffed with the DOJ’s “best and brightest” prosecutors.

In 2008, those prosecutors won a victory against Paul Little, aka Max Hardcore, convicting him on 10 counts of violating federal obscenity laws, a verdict that led to a 46-month prison sentence. Earlier this year in March, just a few weeks before their own case was scheduled to go before a jury, Zicari and Romano accepted a plea bargain when the government offered to reduce its case against them to a single count of conspiracy to distribute obscene material.

“We felt like they had the best chance to get the least amount of time if they pled,” says Jennifer Kinsley, an attorney at Sirkin Pinales & Schwartz, the law firm that represented Zicari and Romano throughout their seven-year legal battle. “Financially, this case really destroyed them. People became afraid to do business with them on the production side and the distribution side.” Their business no longer exists. Neither one has produced or directed a video since 2005. “They went from living in a very nice house that they owned to sharing a small apartment with a roommate.”

Now, they’re in prison, Romano at FCI Waseca in Minnesota, and Zicari at FCI La Tuna in Texas. According to Kinsley, Zicari was supposed to serve his sentence at FCI La Tuna’s minimum-security satellite facility, but he mistakenly reported to its primary facility 30 miles away. Instead of transferring him to the satellite facility, however, prison officials kept there. “But then they ended up putting him in solitary confinement [for nearly a month] because that was the only space they had available,” Kinsley says.

Granted, hardcore pornographers don’t make for the most sympathetic victims, even when they’re financially strapped and thrown in the hole simply 
for poor navigation skills.

Ultimately, however, two American citizens are currently spending a year in prison for making movies that involved adult actors participating in fictional scenarios with their full consent. The rapes and murders they staged were no less imaginary than the rapes and murders Hollywood stages with far greater verisimilitude every day. The gross-out stunts they engaged in were no grosser than the bug-eating contests of reality TV or the bodily fluids gags that can be found in countless Hollywood comedies.

Unfortunately, Romano and Zicari had the audacity to mix genres of entertainment that, while permissible on their own, are apparently not allowed to be combined. And thus they managed to achieve what not even John Waters ever accomplished: They were sent to prison for having bad taste.

But those with better taste shouldn’t expect immunity now that the Obscenity Prosecution Task Force has extended it winning streak. As Rob Zicari told Frontline 2002, it’s not as if anti-porn advocates make distinctions between good pornography and bad pornography: “They want to get rid of everybody. The Christian right, the fundamentalists, they don't like pornography. It doesn't matter if their movie is a married couple having sex in the bed, and they're loving each other, or it's our kind where it's like some pimp having sex with some street hooker in an alley for crack or something. They don't look at it that way. They look at it as sex, filming it, and distributing it to the masses…”

Currently, the Obscenity Prosecution Task Force is led by Alberto Gonzales appointee Brent Ward, a man who once led a crusade in Utah to get nude art-class models to wear bikinis. According to Jennifer Kinsley, the Task Force isn’t just continuing old cases that began in the Bush era, it’s also actively seeking out new ones. “Someone was asking me the other day why this is still happening,” she says. “I think the reason is that Brent Ward is still there. Had he been asked to resign, I don’t think these cases would still be going on. But basically the Obama Administration has left the previous decision-makers in their offices.”

Those decision-makers remain in office in part, no doubt, because so few people have even acknowledged, much less objected, to the fact that our federal government is sending people to prison for thought-crimes. In the July 2009 issue of Reason, Jacob Sullum reported on the case’s outcome, but throughout the mediasphere, coverage was scant. The New York Times made no mention of Zicari and Romano’s conviction or subsequent sentencing. Nor did The Washington Post. The Los Angeles Times ran a 131-word AP story. Now that the two convention-flouting provocateurs are actually sitting in jail, though, perhaps their ordeal will seem compelling enough to inspire their Hollywood brethren to at least circulate a petition or two on their behalf in the name of artistic freedom.

Contributing Editor Greg Beato is a writer living in San Francisco.

_____________________________________________________________________

Worthy of note here, besides the obvious import of the case at hand, is the attention given to Brent Ward and his smut-buster squads continuing presences, and continuing activity, under the new administration.

When I began seeing pro-Obama icons popping up on anti-porn sites and blogs after the MacKinnon endorsement in The WSJ, I told you so.

Now I'm telling you so again. These guys are exactly zero improvement over the last bunch when it comes to porn. Before the day is done, they may prove to be worse.

Maybe some of the good liberal and progressive types who gave their money and their votes to Obama might care to start sending a few emails and actual letters about this nonsense. Maybe even a few of those great creative thinkers who see fit to raise a great public outcry over the terrible injustice being done to embattled genius and convicted rapist Roman Polanski might spare a minute to say something about what's been done to the Zicaris, who harmed no one, particularly no minors, in the making fictional pictures for public consumption.

Maybe tomorrow the sun will rise in the west. I'd say the odds are about the same.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Weinstein/Lubben Alliance's Response To Getting Stoned By The Courts?? Go Donald Wildmon And Boycott For Condom-Only!!

Gee...you'd think that Michael Weinstein and his newest BGF Shelley Lubben would give up the ghost after their attempt to impose condom-only rules on the porn industry got shot down faster than a bird in a hailstorm...but you would be wrong.  Now, they are attempting to use the old efforts of economic coercion to do for them what they couldn't do with the law.

Once again we rely on X-Biz.com for the story.






 
LOS ANGELES — A movement to make porn films condom-only is sure to gain further traction on Wednesday as two groups plan to protest the Marriott hotel chain.


The AIDS Healthcare Foundation and Pink Cross Foundation claim Marriott acts as a “middleman” in selling condom-less porn productions because it makes millions from the pay-per-view lineup it offers in its hotel rooms.


The groups are planning a “Porn In” Wednesday night at the downtown Los Angeles Marriott. They also will announce a viral and print ad campaign for a hotel boycott.
They will protest in front of the Figueroa Street Marriott with banners and three-foot wide condoms. Later, a press conference will be held in a hotel room with streaming porn on the room’s flat screen.


Michael Weinstein, president of AIDS Healthcare Foundation, said that until he gets a commitment from Marriott officials to block condomless adult films to their hotel guests he will urge a public boycott of the entire Marriott chain, which pencils out to about 3,000.


“We want to highlight the brazen hypocrisy — the Mormon Marriott’s moral masquerade — of such a so-called family oriented hotel chain profiteering off adult films that endanger the lives of the performers acting in them,” Weinstein said.


The AIDS Healthcare Foundation has taken a stand after an adult performer tested positive for HIV several months ago.

The Los Angeles-based group filed suit against Los Angeles County public health officials, claiming they have not made any moves to require condom use on the porn set, and filed formal complaints against 16 adult entertainment companies with Cal-OSHA in order to push for mandatory condoms at the workplace.

Weinstein said that the viral online component of the ad campaign against Marriott will launch later this week, with the print ad campaign to follow next week in the Salt Lake City area.


“[It’s] home to the Marriott founder’s Mormon religion,” he said. Weinstein was referring to deceased founder J. Willard Marriott, a lifelong Mormon.
Now...one of the grandest ironies is that Marriot has been the target of boycotts for their policy of allowing adult films and videos to be shown in their rooms...but usually it is from the Religious Right who wants to ban them outright, not merely to engineer which particular kinds of films appear.  And, if I remember right, most of the hotel chains that do allow porn movies or porn channels specifically limit them to the late-night cable channels like Spice and Adam and Eve and Hott Network....which for the most part tend towards the straighter, more couples-oriented genres which tend to include condoms anyway.

But then again, one can never underestimate the gravitation force that a microphone has on such a media whore like Michael Weinstein.

 If boycotts from far more politically powerful folk like Donald Wildmon's American Family Association and Morality in Media haven't worked in pushing Marriott towards banishing porn, then how in the hell does Weinstein think that his "pressure" will make any similar headway??  Is he that stupid to think that selective censorship is more feasible and will be more accepted by the swarms of consumers of hotel chains than a total ban??

And...even by the slightly less then slim-to-none chance that Weinstein's efforts succeed, that will certainly put about as much a dent into sales of condom-free porn as...well..a popgun would affect a nuke. I mean, what about all those Internet sites and all the porn produced outside of Utah,and all those other firms, Michael...surely they will succumb to your superior progessive wisdom, too??

Yeah, right.

Still, the notion that a corporate entity like Marriott Hotels could surrender to such nonsense is more than just a slight threat, and given how much the adult sexual media is under the rocks due to the recession, this is something that should be taken very seriously by we who favor freedom of choice and performer autonomy...and who think that performers, not bureaucrats or holier-than-thou activists, should decide for themselves how to protect themselves.

Monday, October 19, 2009

More on the AIM/Cal-OSHA Court Decision

Anthony kind of jumped me on this, but AIM has a more complete press release account I wrote yesterday that I believe went out today. It outlines some of the broader issues at stake, and though it reflects our relief over Judge Smith's wise decision, it addresses the serious problems that remain, particular for small, independent producers, and for AIM itself:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SUPERIOR COURT QUASHES CAL-OSHA’S ATTEMPT TO SUBPOENA CONFIDENTIAL AIM MEDICAL RECORDS

AIM’s Financial Woes From Litigation Costs Remain a Threat to Organization’s Continued Operation

On October 15, 2009, California Superior Court Judge Winifred Y. Smith granted a preliminary injunction blocking efforts by Cal-OSHA to force The Adult Industry Medical Healthcare Foundation to supply the safety agency with privileged information regarding an adult video performer who tested positive for HIV at one of AIM’s clinics in June 2009.

Concluding sixteen pages of closely-reasoned argument backed by statutory restraints and existing case law, Judge Smith enjoined Cal-OSHA from pursuing access by legal process to AIM’s records regarding this case in crisp, clear, unambiguous language:

“Defendants California Department of Industrial Relations, Division of Occupational Safety and Health, Lee Welsh, and their agents and employees, are restrained from compelling or seeking to compel the disclosure of confidential
medical records, HlV test information, and personal identifying information of Plaintiff and other patients of AIM without the specific written authorization of such patients; and

2. Defendant Adult Industry Medical Health Care Foundation is restrained from disclosing confidential medical records, HlV test information.”

Judge Smith further held that: “Because CalOSHA appears to have acted beyond its jurisdiction in subpoenaing this information, and because obtaining the information would
impermissibly infringe upon Plaintiffs and other patients' Constitutional privacy rights, Defendant's argument that an injunction cannot be granted, pursuant to CCP 526(b)(4), to prevent execution of a public statute by a public entity for the
benefit of the public fails.”

This stinging juridical rebuke after weeks of pre-trial maneuvering by Cal-OSHA, including unannounced inspection of of AIM’s Sherman Oaks clinic, the theft of patient release forms from the clinic’s waiting room , and heated courtroom theatrics from Cal-OSHA counsel Amy Martin, slams the door on the agency’s attempt to dragoon AIM into its witch-hunt against adult video producers by overriding state and federal protections of doctor-patient privilege through the use of Cal-OSHA’s highly limited and employment-specific subpoena powers.

It would be difficult to overstate the significance of this victory for the medical confidentiality rights of adult video performers and for AIM’s ability to provide testing, monitoring and treatment for those performers free of unlawful state intrusion. Cal-OSHA made no secret of its intention to use whatever information it might have obtained through this subpoena to establish connections between AIM patients and the producers who engage them and thus to justify the imposition of potentially ruinous fines on those producers on the dubious grounds of engagement in proximity to the detection of sexually transmitted infections.

This was a heavy-handed attempt by a state agency to write new law expansively reinterpreting its mandate with the intent of punishing adult video producers for misfortunes to which those producers causal relationship cannot be medically or legally established. The court found Cal-OSHA’s claims to such authority entirely meritless and its methods in contravention of existing law.

Thus Cal-OSHA has failed in its attempt to use the Adult Video Industry’s key STD testing and monitoring organization as a weapon against that industry.

But however welcome Judge Smith’s wise ruling may be, it by no means eliminates the threat of Cal-OSHA’s ongoing vendetta against our community of performers and producers, and while it protects AIM from further harassment by Cal-OSHA’s agents and employees, it leaves AIM in dire financial straits that threaten the foundation’s ability to operate as it has with such success over the past dozen years. Litigation of this type is catastrophically expensive for a small, non-profit organization supported by voluntary donations and the at-cost services it provides. AIM has no budget for paying attorney’s fees, travel expenses for repeated trips to Oakland, where the case was heard, research expenses and the other financial burdens imposed by having to defend itself, and the industry at large, against the vastly greater resources of state government.

As of now, AIM has unpaid debts arising out of this case in excess of $170,000 dollars, and if those debts are not paid, AIM’s clinics face the very real possibility of having to close its clinic’s doors for good within before the year is out.

If that happens, AIM’s courtroom victory will look a lot like defeat for everyone involved in the making of adult video. Cal-OSHA and other governmental agencies and certain NGOs do not believe in our ability to regulate ourselves and protect the health of our performers. AIM’s extraordinary record since its inception of doing exactly that is the industry’s most compelling argument against the heavy-handed and most probably ineffective regulations these outsiders wish to impose.

The exact number of HIV-positive Adult Industry performers revealed by AIM testing since 2004 totals five people – four performers infected as a result of a single incident in 2004 and one performer in 2009. In this most recent case, AIM put 19 people under quarantine, including performers and non-performers, and this patient’s case was determined by AIM to have occurred outside of the Adult Industry performer population.

Since 2004, new cases of HIV among the general population of Los Angeles County averaged about 3,000 per year.

Our statistics for other STDs, including gonorrhea, Chlamydia and syphilis, show a steady 2.4% incidence in our client population at any given time, considerably lower than the average for sexually active young people with similar demographics. Indeed, when it comes to the risk of disease, the surrounding population represents a far greater danger to our clients than they to it.

Despite sensational, misleading and often outright fabricated claims to the contrary by various public officials and spokespersons for private organizations, adult video production remains remarkably safe from the risk of disease, largely as a result of AIMs vigilance in keeping infected individuals from entering the talent pool and identifying such individuals immediately if they become infected after entering the industry.

Were AIM to cease operation, those safeguards would be gone and claims that adult video production constitutes a clear and present danger to the health of its participants and to the surrounding community would be much more difficult to refute.

In addition to the wisdom of Judge Smith’s finding in favor of the injunction, she sounds a cautionary note none of us can afford to ignore:

“California law erects strong safeguards to prevent the disclosure of HlV-relatedinformation. Health and Safety Code section 120975, in Chapter 7, applies to HIV testing generally and states:
[t]o protect the privacy of individuals who are the subject of blood testing for antibodies to human immunodeficiency virus (HlV), the following shall apply: Except as provided in Section 1603.1 [disclosure to blood banks], 1603.3 [notification of blood donors], 121022 [report to local health officers], no person shall be compelled in any state, county, city, or other local civil, criminal, administrative, legislative, or other proceedings to identify or provide identifying characteristics that would identify any individual who is the subject of a blood test to detect antibodies to HIV.
Section 120980 provides civil penalties for persons who negligently disclose, and criminal penalties for persons who willfully disclose, the results of an HIV test.

Testing is anonymous and, in the absence of a consent to disclosure, results cannot be disclosed to anyone other than the person tested.”

In other words, absent AIM’s voluntary compliance testing program, producers would enjoy no legal right to require HIV testing of performers to insist on the disclosure of any performer’s HIV status. Furthermore, under state anti-discrimination laws, producers could not legally bar performers whose HIV test results are unknown, or even those who are HIV-positive, from performing.

Such is the hellish legal limbo into which this business would be cast if AIM were to shutter its clinics and the 98% compliance with AIM’s voluntary testing program we now enjoy to disappear in the absence of any legally feasible alternative.

AIM has saved this industry from such a calamity through its services for over a decade. Is it too much to ask that the industry in turn martial its financial resources to the utmost to save AIM in return?

We have secured an important victory in one battle. A long campaign lies ahead. The time to demonstrate our collective determination to see that campaign through is now.

____---------------------------------------------

Meanwhile, as AIM struggles to keep its doors open, the swat on the nose Cal-OSHA got from Judge Smith hasn't deterred them from their campaign to drive the lawful porn industry out of California. They have now begun sending inspectors to sets based on lists of filming permits and going over studios and locatioins with a magnifying glass. If they find a loose extension cord or a ladder where it shouldn't be or an improperly mounted fire extinguisher, the inspectors are writing citations on the spot. They're also writing citations on the blood-borne parthogens standards for healtchare facilities, even those said standards have not yet been establishes as applicable to the porn industry. One company was recently cited because a production assitant picked up a used towel without wearing gloves. They've even been inspecting offices where no production goes on in search of minute violations.

If the infractions are small, or even non-existent, the penalties are draconian. The minimum fines start around $15,000 per citation. As you can imagine, it doesn't take many small transgresssions to put a struggling company underwater.

Meanwhile, the LAPD, in the wake of Michael Weinstein and Shelley Lubben putting on their dog-and-pony show for The Board of Supervisors, has formed a special squad to roam the city in search of non-permitted shooting (looking for grip trucks in driveways, etc.) and shutting those shoots down.

All of this comes at a time when production is the lowest it's been in 15 years and talent and crews are struggling to pay their rents.

Meanwhile, both the state, county and city governments are deeply in debt and the most basic services are being drastically cut back. Farm workers are dying from pesticide exposure in the fields of The Central Valley, ER patients are bleeding out in the corridors of county hospitals because there aren't enough personnel to treat them and gang violence is resurgent all over the city.

Yet these taxpayer-funded agencies and organizations continue to find time and money to snoop on porn sets from which no complaints, in a supposedly complaint-driven inspection process, have been made.

This is cruel madness sponsored by a handful of fanatical bureaucrats bent on destroying an industry that pays its taxes, obeys the law and keeps its business very much out of everyone else's way.

And if anyone actually thinks this arises out of something having to do with protecting the health or welfare of performers or others engaged in the making of sexually explicit images needs to be reminded of this little gem of wisdom from Dr. Peter Kerndt of L.A. County Health in his monograph for The Public Library of Science:

"The portrayal of unsafe sex in adult films may also influence viewer behavior. In the same way that images of smoking in films romanticize tobacco use, viewers of these adult films may idealize unprotected sex [16]. The increasingly high-risk sexual behavior viewed by large audiences on television and the Internet could decrease condom use. Requiring condoms may influence viewers to see them as normative or even sexually appealing, and devalue unsafe sex. With the growing accessibility of adult film to mainstream America, portrayals of condom use onscreen could increase condom use among viewers, thereby promoting public health."

But of course, none of this is about content or First Amendment-related concerns. Nope. This is all being done from tender concern for those whose lives are directly impacted.

And what is Dr. Kerndt's long-term objective?

"Lacking the will or ability to regulate itself, the adult film industry needs state and federal legislation to enforce health and safety standards for adult film performers. Local officials lack the authority to impose fines and Cal/OSHA's monitoring and enforcement capability is limited. Short of legislation mandating performer protection, restricting distribution of adult movies to condom-only films may be the one way to have an impact on the industry. If there were organized and truly effective advocacy for performers, then large hotel chains, video retailers, and cable networks could be pressured to purchase adult films under a condom-only “seal of approval.” Alternatively and more effectively, legislation could require that the Custodian of Records (already required under Federal law) maintain documentation of screening tests and condom usage in a film's production. Distribution could be restricted to those films produced pursuant to the standard prior to any sale to cable companies or hotel chains, over the Internet, or in other markets."

That's the agenda, as set by the Number One instigator of this whole situation, and it's working.

The chilling effect has set in. Given my outspoken criticisms of these people and institutions, I have no doubt that I'm high on their hit list. The studio Nina and I share is a couple of miles from all their offices.

Until these matters are resolved, I wouldn't even think of shooting so much as a family portrait here. I'm done in video production until the anti-porn pogrom is either halted by official intervention or, quite possibly, forever if these cranks succeed in forcing their personal crusades down all our throats.

Though we won a victory last week of no small importance, I can assure you no champagne will be drunk here tonight.

More to say on what happens when porn is stripped of legal protections and driven underground and/or out of state. It won't be a pretty read.

And for those who don't think what happens here matters all that much to freedom of sexual expression elsewhere, ponder this: if a handful of motivated bureaucrats can inflict this kind of damage in a state where the porn industry has functioned without major interference for three decades, imagine what can happen in places with no such history and no established precedent for legal operation.

Without laying a glove on Miller v. California, it might very well be possible to make porn production illegal everywhere in the U.S. through the abuse of regulatory procedures. If we lose that fight here, we're unlikely to win it elsewhere.

HIV-Porn "Outbreak" Update: Cal Judge Stones Cal-OSHA, Keeps "Patient Zero" Med Records Private

Well, well, well....it seems that there is respect for privacy regarding medical records after all.  Even for porn performers.

This latest from XBiz.com:


Cal-OSHA Can’t Seek AIM Healthcare Medical Records

 OAKLAND, Calif. — A judge last week OK'd a protective order sought by "Patient Zero" over five years’ worth of information from the AIM Healthcare Foundation that Cal-OSHA had been seeking.

Patient Zero, the adult industry performer who was found to be HIV-positive in June, asked the court to seek an injunction against Cal-OSHA and AIM because released patient-identifying information would violate Patient Zero’s right to privacy and give irreparable harm to her, according to a suit filed by ACLU attorneys.



Alameda Superior Court Judge Judge Winifred Smith, in her ruling said that "once [Patient Zero’s] identifying information is revealed, the disclosure cannot be undone,” and that Cal-OSHA can carry out its probe with a variety of other options.


Smith also said that Cal-OSHA was not acting within its jurisdiction in subpoenaing the data through the years 2004-2009.


“Cal-OSHA is charged with, among other things, investigating 'causes of any employment accident that ... results in a serious injury or illness, or a serious exposure, unless it determines that an investigation is unnecessary.' Smith said in her ruling. “Plaintiff is concededly not an employee of AIM, and Cal-OSHA is admittedly not investigating the safety of AIM's employees, but of adult film industry employers."


Smith further said that Cal-OSHA is limited to investigating employers and their agents.


“There is no apparent need for identifying information of Patient Zero, or of patient-identifying information generally, for the purposes of investigation of AIM as an employer," she said.


The suit over Patient Zero information was put on the fast track after her counsel from the ACLU learned of a meeting slated in July between Cal-OSHA officials and AIM personnel.


The court filing detailed the extent Cal-OSHA used its regulatory power to seek patient medical records at AIM, which provides HIV and STD testing and treatment mostly for adult industry performers.

Cal-OSHA, which conducted a surprise inspection of the AIM facility in Sherman Oaks, Calif., on June 17, later issued a subpoena to AIM but not to Patient Zero, who was informed by AIM on June 6 that results of an HIV test showed her preliminarily testing positive for HIV. (Patient Zero’s identity has never been revealed publicly.)


The subpoena issued by Cal-OSHA included requests for confidential public health records and “personally identifying information of AIM patents who tested positive for HIV that could reasonably be expected to identify or lead to the identification of Patient Zero.”


At the time, AIM personnel refused to produce records.


But Cal-OSHA officials scheduled a follow-up investigatory interview with AIM staff in Oakland, Calif., according to the suit.


Once Patient Zero’s attorneys got wind of the interview with AIM staff, they immediately shot off a request to Cal-OSHA objecting to it.


Patient Zero’s counsel said they never received any response from Cal-OSHA relative to the request; however a receipt of the letter showed that Cal-OSHA special counsel did receive the letter.


Patient Zero's counsel later filed its suit at Alameda Superior Court. Last week, they were successful with the injunction.

Notice especially the graph dealing with Judge Smith's ruling that Cal-OSHA has no jurisdiction over AIM's testing activities of porn performers, since the performers themselves are not employees of AIM.  That alone should put an abrupt end to the screeching of Michael Weinstein that Cal-OSHA or the LA County health officials can use this latest "scare" to impose mandatory condom usage or other punitive measures intended to impose their brand of social engineering.

Now...whether that ruling affects Weinstein's ongoing suit against the LA health officials to enforce the mandatory condom rules through local legislation is still up in the air...but considering that it would be Cal-OSHA that would have been responsible for enforcing the rules in the first place, it would seem to be a fatal blow to such efforts.

Of course, that probably won't stop Weinstein from holding one of his pressers condemning Judge Smith as an enabler and a tool of the porn industry who is sacrificing women to their deaths. I wonder if Shelley Lubben or any of the antiporn radicalfems will be accompanying him with the usual horror tales then??