Sexual Intelligence
An Electronic Newsletter

Written and published by Marty Klein, Ph.D.

Issue #53 -- July 2004


1. Broadcast 'Indecency' a WMD?
2. 'F-Word' a WMD?
3. Screwed--No Sex Necessary
4. Guilty Until Proven Guilty
5. Reagan's Legacy: World AIDS
6. Opting For Opt-In
7. You're Everywhere!


1. Broadcast 'Indecency' a WMD?

In the latest government effort to curb 'indecency' on the airwaves, the Senate overwhelmingly approved raising the maximum fine for broadcasters and on-air personalities to $275,000 per incident. In a desperate attempt to distract Americans from its almost total lack of concern about children's healthcare and education, our leaders can proudly show their commitment to protecting children from something worse than TB or dangerous schools--exposure to toilet jokes.

The Senate vote followed another victory for those who long to sanitize the airwaves: payment by radio giant Clear Channel Communications of a $1.75 million fine to settle a series of 'indecency' complaints. It's all part of the government's announced plan (issues #49, #50) to make radio and TV safe for ten-year-olds, even if it's no longer safe for free expression.

While the FCC has been obsessing about nipples and slang, it has also been arranging for a handful of corporations to own larger and larger shares of the broadcast and print industries. The two issues show the FCC's fundamental misunderstanding of democracy: the Commission facilitates increasing concentration of ownership of radio, TV, and newspapers in given cities (so that Americans have no choice about who to get their local news from), while limiting on-air sexy jokes and pictures--which people could choose to turn off.

One can imagine the execs at Clear Channel and other mega-media corporations: "They'll let us monopolize the news outlets in a whole bunch of major cities, and all we have to do is limit our content? Where do I sign?" This deal with the devil, of course, will not be broadcast in your local station.


2. 'F-Word' a WMD?

Vice-President Dick Cheney told Senator Pat Leahy (D-VT) to "go fuck himself" last week, causing a minor tempest among those who didn't know that Republicans spoke that way. Established news organizations like Newsweek, USA Today, and the New York Times dutifully reported the event--by describing the Vice-President as 'using the f-word.' Unlike our fainthearted colleagues, SI is proud to print exactly what Cheney said.

It's extraordinary to see that 'the f word' has actually become an acceptable usage, recently joined by 'the n-word.' People say we're battling for the very soul of Western civilization, yet we're too timid to see the word fuck (or nigger) in a newspaper, even when the Vice-President says it to a Senator in the halls of Congress. Maybe Al Qaida's right--maybe Americans are just too soft to win this new kind of war we're in.

Although four-term Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) says he expects Cheney to be reprimanded like any other Senator breaking the rules of decorum, we really need more cursing from politicians, not less. When Cheney felt Leahy challenge his integrity, "and then he wanted to act like everything was peaches and cream, I expressed in no uncertain terms my views of his conduct and walked away," Cheney told CNN. If only America could get that kind of unambiguous communication from the current Administration about things that matter.

Cheney's real verbal indecency isn't about the 'f-word' at all--it's his continuous lying and prevaricating about Iraq, corporate energy policy, and the intelligence community. Unfortunately, too many Americans seem more uncomfortable with 'the f-word' than with government lying.


3. Screwed--No Sex Necessary

Businessman Jack Ryan's primary campaign for the Illinois Senate ended last week because five-year-old divorce records reveal he tried to persuade his then-wife to have sex with him at three different sex clubs.

That's right: Wife. Tried.

The Chicago Tribune and other media successfully sued for access to the divorce papers, which the divorcing couple had sealed to protect their young son. When this non-story first broke, Ryan called a press conference, attempting to save his candidacy. "Believe me," he groveled, "I promise I'll never again go to any kind of nightclub or other club that's outside the norm." Now there's leadership and integrity that any state would be proud of.

The American Republic almost fell four years ago over actual, extramarital blowjobs given our President. The bar has now been lowered even further, as Ryan is prevented from running for Senator because he tried to have sex with his own wife at a swing club.

In ending his campaign, Ryan said that the media's interest in politicians' personal lives "has gotten out of control." Absolutely true, of course, but where was he during the Clinton/Lewinsky witchhunt? And how does he feel about these private sex clubs being criminalized and persecuted--is that an unfair intrusion into people's private lives? Now that he's been harrassed and punished for his private sexual behavior, perhaps he can see more clearly how his stated positions on abortion and gay rights bring harrassment and punishment into others' lives.

Ryan's ex-wife was his sole supporter last week, saying that he's a good dad and would make a great Senator. So why couldn't Ryan stand up and say, yeah, we went to some clubs, I tried to get her to have sex with me there, so what? When the public can smell a politician's sex life, cowardice rarely works. Honesty may not work either, but it's worth a try, and if it fails, at least the politician exits with some shred of dignity.

In quitting, Ryan said that "a vigorous debate on the issues most likely could not take place if I remain in the race." Oh Jack, how about making this an issue? The right to privacy, the waste of public resources on victimless crimes, an end to trivializing the electoral process over meaningless distractions, the need for America to elect leaders who actually like sex...there's plenty of 'vigorous debate' needed and possible.

The GOP should be embarrassed about forcing Ryan to quit. Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert himself is from Illinois, and he, too, concurred that Ryan had to go. Hastert thus missed a historic opportunity to encourage America to grow up, and to demonstrate that politicians could actually help lead an exodus from our arid, anti-sex political desert.

Democrats, don't sit there smugly. You know your party would throw its candidate to the wolves under the same circumstances. Where, oh where is the political party for people--and candidates--who admit to being fond of sex?


4. Guilty Until Proven Guilty

Dallas, Texas has joined the growing number (issue #30) of cities to exploit people arrested for soliciting prostitution by publishing their identities--before their trial.

If you check the Dallas Police website, you won't find the names of convicted arsonists, or the photos of confessed murderers. You will find the names, photos, birthdates and hometowns of adults arrested for trying to buy sex from other adults--and no conviction is necessary.

According to Vice Department Lieutenant John Dagen, the goal is to embarrass these people so much that others will be discouraged from gambling on being arrested themselves. This perversion of the justice system surely qualifies as cruel and unusual punishment. Why not just drag these people to the Astrodome and exhibit them every Sunday?

In hypocritical 1984-speak, the website clearly states that "All persons are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law." They aren't treated that way, of course, but this disclaimer allows the City Attorney to sleep at night. Not so those awaiting trial, especially those who will be judged innocent and released.

The people of Dallas should be ashamed for tolerating this. One only hopes that a sting operation soon nets plenty of police, city officials, and rich people who will then be told that they aren't citizens anymore--they're merely 'examples' who can be used to 'motivate' other would-be degenerates. When public policy depends on tyrannical moralism, narrow self-interest is generally the fastest way to undo it. Ending the vice website because it embarrassed some big shot would be doing the right thing for the wrong reason, but that's better than continuing to do the wrong thing.

Murder, robbery, arson, fraud? Dallas either doesn't have any, or it doesn't care. It's too obsessed with sex in a parking lot.

Now that the Supreme Court has provided minimum standards on how America must treat the Guantanamo detainees who haven't been convicted of anything, maybe they can speak to the police in Dallas about upholding the same rights there.


5. Reagan's Legacy: World AIDS

Just as that fish we all caught two decades ago gets bigger every year, people used the occasion of Ronald Reagan's death to mythologize his alleged accomplishments--totally forgetting his key role in transforming AIDS from a problem to an epidemic. When AIDS started rampaging through San Francisco's gay community in 1982, the Reagan administration was lobbied (by Dr. Marcus Conant, among other) to launch an emergency educational campaign about the disease.

But it took the President five more years to simply mention the crisis publicly. By then, almost 21,000 Americans had died from it. "Ronald Reagan and his administration could have made a substantial difference, but for ideological reasons, political reasons, moral reasons, they didn't do it," says Conant. "President Reagan and his administration committed a crime, not just a sin."

As icing on the anti-sexual cake, Reagan galvanized conservative Christians to participate in the political process as a bloc for the first time. He also appointed Antonin Scalia to the Supreme Court, who continues to be a powerful foe of both privacy and reproductive rights.

By the way, don't believe that 'Reagan destroyed Communism' myth. Internationally-known political analyst and veteran policy wonk Sam Vaknin assures us that Reagan, like everyone else, merely got out of the way and watched the Soviet Union self-destruct.


6. Opting For Opt-In

You've probably read our recent email about changing SI's subscription practices to comply with federal anti-spam regulations. Any publication changing to an opt-in system inevitably loses a substantial number of subscribers, even if it's free. So in addition to writing and publishing, we'll be giving serious attention to building readership this summer.

Surely you know people who would love to discover SI. Please forward this issue, or encourage a few people you like to check us out, at <>.

And if you know anyone who's been a subscriber but wonders why they don't get their monthly copy anymore, please remind them they have to opt-in. SI is just too good to be circulating to only a tiny list, don't you think?


7. You're Everywhere!

Readers continue notifying us of their international locations. This month we heard from subscribers in Austria, Belgium, Chile, France, Guatemala, and Sweden. If you live outside North America, please drop us a note.

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