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IvanKaramazov

Robert Kraft (yes, THAT Robert Kraft) charged with soliciting prostitution

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2 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

I agree -- good post.

Also, if this sting turns out not to involve sex trafficking, we're all going to rue the missed opportunity to mock and ridicule Bob Kraft.

Let's resolve to do this anyway. And bostonfred while we're at it.

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On ‎2‎/‎22‎/‎2019 at 4:07 PM, Moe. said:

Yeah, I’m generally a legalize it kind of guy but there are really compelling arguments against it for prostitution. 

Good arguments on both sides.  Decriminalization/Legalization often has other impacts as well, like a reduction in the occurrence of rapes.

I'm seeing some stuff saying legalization leads to increased trafficking because of the market expanding, and that has happened in some countries.  I also saw that countries that are a democracy (vs any other form of government) have an 11% higher rate of sex trafficking.  There appear to be a lot of levers to pull to increase/decrease trafficking, and a lot of impacts outside of just trafficking if you decriminalize it.  These things have no easy way of measuring for comparison either.  If changes laws to decriminalize prostitution leads to 100 less rapes BUT also to 10 more enslaved girls... is it a good move?  Real tough to say IMO.

 

Ultimately, I think letting consenting adults pay for something that they could legally do for free is the correct answer for society.  Meanwhile, increasing enforcement and penalties for sexual slavery/child prostitution/trafficking AND freeing up resources that are primarily just stopping consenting adults from doing things consenting adults should be allowed to do.  I believe this shift of stance would have a net benefit impact on society.

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On ‎2‎/‎22‎/‎2019 at 4:32 PM, Joe Bryant said:

More from my friend:

"I don't think we can expect all but a minority of people to view this as exploitation."

I think a vast majority of people would see the $79 Asian Spa girl as exploitation. What do you guys think?

For the me it 100% comes down to if she was there by choice or not.  And then, whether or not Kraft knew if she wasn't.

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On ‎2‎/‎22‎/‎2019 at 5:03 PM, Henry Ford said:

Maybe this will help:

If you're receiving services from a prostitute in the U.S., it's much more likely than not she's been trafficked or otherwise exploited against her wishes.

I can't imagine this is remotely close to true.

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On ‎2‎/‎22‎/‎2019 at 5:34 PM, SHIZNITTTT said:

The police department has videos of illegal sex acts.   Weird!   So the police department let these men have sex with the "massage workers" filmed it then man arrests?   I thought as the cop shows once the money was exchanged the police busted in and made an arrest.  Seems weird that a law enforcement agency would allow illegal acts to happen. 

They ran tape for 5 weeks.

 

If you ask me, that seems to indicate that they were interested in making big news instead of rescuing the women who were being exploited.

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3 minutes ago, (HULK) said:
On 2/22/2019 at 4:03 PM, Henry Ford said:

Maybe this will help:

If you're receiving services from a prostitute in the U.S., it's much more likely than not she's been trafficked or otherwise exploited against her wishes.

I can't imagine this is remotely close to true.

Then you would be wrong.

Check out Rebecca Bender - https://rebeccabender.org/

 

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6 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

I can't imagine this is remotely close to true.

Try harder.

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2 minutes ago, Vike Me said:

Then you would be wrong.

Check out Rebecca Bender - https://rebeccabender.org/

 

That site, although amazing in what Rebecca is doing, doesn't really give stats.

To back up (Hulk)'s point, I would guess that a very large population of prostitutes started doing it due to a drug addiction of some kind, but I don't have stats to back up that belief.

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On ‎2‎/‎23‎/‎2019 at 4:31 AM, DA RAIDERS said:

It’s a gray area. Does anyone, want to be working in the worlds oldest profession?  Does the high priced prostitute really want to do what he/she does, any more than the desperate, cheap one, does?   To me, the price is irrelevant. It’s all a form of slavery, whether self imposed, or otherwise.   Why the #### would anyone want to do that for a living?  

 

Most of us do things we don't like for money.  Very few of us are lucky enough to do what we love to earn a living.

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21 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

Good arguments on both sides.  Decriminalization/Legalization often has other impacts as well, like a reduction in the occurrence of rapes.

I'm seeing some stuff saying legalization leads to increased trafficking because of the market expanding, and that has happened in some countries.  I also saw that countries that are a democracy (vs any other form of government) have an 11% higher rate of sex trafficking.  There appear to be a lot of levers to pull to increase/decrease trafficking, and a lot of impacts outside of just trafficking if you decriminalize it.  These things have no easy way of measuring for comparison either.  If changes laws to decriminalize prostitution leads to 100 less rapes BUT also to 10 more enslaved girls... is it a good move?  Real tough to say IMO.

 

Ultimately, I think letting consenting adults pay for something that they could legally do for free is the correct answer for society.  Meanwhile, increasing enforcement and penalties for sexual slavery/child prostitution/trafficking AND freeing up resources that are primarily just stopping consenting adults from doing things consenting adults should be allowed to do.  I believe this shift of stance would have a net benefit impact on society.

I'd be interested in seeing the data on this because the logic seems questionable to me.

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On ‎2‎/‎23‎/‎2019 at 1:05 PM, Joe Bryant said:

Maybe just maybe, people might agree this is exploitation when they read about the 14 year olds. 

Absolutely.  That is a completely separate event from the thing Kraft got caught up in.  And it lasted 6 days.  And it stopped underage trafficking.

 

The Kraft thing started in OCTOBER and they're finally filing charges now at the end of February.  They recorded stuff for over a month.  And I've yet to see anything but old ladies involved, no kids.

 

We'll learn more in the coming days.  But the shape of these two stings are very different.

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On ‎2‎/‎23‎/‎2019 at 1:33 PM, Henry Ford said:

The average age female sex worker gets into the industry is about fourteen or fifteen.  

Not much room for many women who grew up and then decided to do this in a healthy way. 

Not to call this "statistic" into question as wrong, but where are you getting this from?

 

And given the fact that sex work at age 14 will only exist in a black market in 100% of the world, I have a real tough time believing this number to be accurate.  No way to get solid data.

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1 minute ago, (HULK) said:

Not to call this "statistic" into question as wrong, but where are you getting this from?

 

And given the fact that sex work at age 14 will only exist in a black market in 100% of the world, I have a real tough time believing this number to be accurate.  No way to get solid data.

I've linked a study in this thread.  The study wasn't worldwide.  It was for U.S. workers.

Studies have shown anywhere from 12-14 to 16-17 as the average age for a woman to have begun prostitution in the United States.

If any of those are the average, it's very difficult to imagine that more women began at a later age than an earlier age.  Beginning at under 17 is not an adult choice.

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31 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

I think letting consenting adults pay for something that they could legally do for free is the correct answer for society.  Meanwhile, increasing enforcement and penalties for sexual slavery/child prostitution/trafficking AND freeing up resources that are primarily just stopping consenting adults from doing things consenting adults should be allowed to do.  I believe this shift of stance would have a net benefit impact on society.

 

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However, by all means, if you have competing studies, statistics, or viewpoints that prostitutes in the U.S. are not primarily exploited, I would be interested in reading all of your sources.  

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On ‎2‎/‎23‎/‎2019 at 7:56 PM, rockaction said:

Elizabeth Nolan Brown, who covers sex work for Reason magazine, is skeptical about claims of sex slavery and traces similar claims from the police that have happened recently.  To her, it sounds like an ordinary prostitution sting gussied up in speculation about horribleness.  

http://reason.com/blog/2019/02/22/robert-krafts-prostitution-arrest-is-par

That happens very frequently.  And aligns with my suspicions of the situation... however, I'm trying to keep an open mind as more facts come out.

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2 minutes ago, Henry Ford said:

However, by all means, if you have competing studies, statistics, or viewpoints that prostitutes in the U.S. are not primarily exploited, I would be interested in reading all of your sources.  

 

Does Pretty Woman count?

 

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All we know for now is that Kraft is charged with two misdemeanors which carry a $500 fine. There could also be minimal jail time added if they wanted to pursue it (which seems unlikely). The sheriff said no one underage was involved. 

Trafficking is a big deal, but on the surface it does not appear Kraft had any knowledge of or involvement in trafficking.

As a for instance, if I have been taking my car to a garage for repairs and that establishment got busted using stolen parts, am I conspiring to the operation of an illegal chop shop? I get that having a car repaired is not against the law. 

Solicitation is a crime in Florida, so Kraft will have to face the music for that. From what I have heard, the max the NFL can fine him is $500K and they can’t take away any draft picks. 

As others have mentioned, Irsay got charged with four felonies and got suspended 6 games. Kraft for now will be charged with 2 misdemeanors. Either situation is a bad look for the league, but I don’t believe they have a lot of options to really go crazy on the punishment end. 

(That’s with the caveat that other things don’t come out and no other charges filed.)

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On ‎2‎/‎23‎/‎2019 at 9:13 PM, Joe Bryant said:

I am a total novice on this subject. But I'm not sure there is such a bright line between "ordinary prostitution at the $79 Asian Spa" and "sex slavery". 

I think there most definitely is.  It depends entirely on the free will of the worker.  If she was forced into it, it is an abomination.  If she was there because she chose to do it, I don't see it as something the government should be involving themselves with.  If she was doing it as a last resort because of crummy circumstances, I think it is more of a gray area, but we should be focused on improving those circumstances rather than filming sex acts and broadcasting everyone involved to the entire world as a sex trafficking sting when it wasn't.

 

These false trafficking cases weaken the efforts against real sex trafficking.  I can't see it any other way.

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2 minutes ago, Vike Me said:

 

Does Pretty Woman count?

 

Who says Hollywood doesn't send young women the right message? Become a street hooker and you land yourself a rich dude.

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5 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

All we know for now is that Kraft is charged with two misdemeanors which carry a $500 fine. There could also be minimal jail time added if they wanted to pursue it (which seems unlikely). The sheriff said no one underage was involved. 

Trafficking is a big deal, but on the surface it does not appear Kraft had any knowledge of or involvement in trafficking.

As a for instance, if I have been taking my car to a garage for repairs and that establishment got busted using stolen parts, am I conspiring to the operation of an illegal chop shop? I get that having a car repaired is not against the law. 

Solicitation is a crime in Florida, so Kraft will have to face the music for that. From what I have heard, the max the NFL can fine him is $500K and they can’t take away any draft picks. 

As others have mentioned, Irsay got charged with four felonies and got suspended 6 games. Kraft for now will be charged with 2 misdemeanors. Either situation is a bad look for the league, but I don’t believe they have a lot of options to really go crazy on the punishment end. 

(That’s with the caveat that other things don’t come out and no other charges filed.)

This goes back to my earlier question, but I wonder if the NFL has any extra wording that could install more punishments to Kraft if he continues to fight it, and creates a long term negative story for league to deal with.

It feels like the basic punishments should only be if he got in front of the story and shut it down before it can spiral, for likely months or more.

Edited by NewlyRetired

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Just now, Vike Me said:

 

Does Pretty Woman count?

 

The movie where Richard Gere's buddy realizes Gere hired a prostitute, so he propositions her and then beats her when she refuses to have sex with him?  Sure.

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3 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

I think there most definitely is.  It depends entirely on the free will of the worker.  If she was forced into it, it is an abomination.  If she was there because she chose to do it, I don't see it as something the government should be involving themselves with.  If she was doing it as a last resort because of crummy circumstances, I think it is more of a gray area, but we should be focused on improving those circumstances rather than filming sex acts and broadcasting everyone involved to the entire world as a sex trafficking sting when it wasn't.

 

These false trafficking cases weaken the efforts against real sex trafficking.  I can't see it any other way.

Which false trafficking cases?

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On ‎2‎/‎23‎/‎2019 at 9:43 PM, Exit 1 said:

Do you have a solid link for the 14/15 year stat?

I found this:

https://polarisproject.org/blog/2016/01/05/average-age-entry-myth

 

I think is a difficult area to discuss openly and pragmatically.  A lot of us are carrying various baggage into the conversation, perhaps we have daughters, perhaps friends who were involved in sex work in some capacity, perhaps other things.

 

I do believe in striving for accuracy.  We cannot have open and honest discussions and improve society if we paint with a biased and broad brush.  That 14/15 "stat" doesn't appear to be a statistic at all.  It is bringing nothing but misinformation to the conversation.  I don't see that as particularly helpful.

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2 minutes ago, Henry Ford said:

The movie where Richard Gere's buddy realizes Gere hired a prostitute, so he propositions her and then beats her when she refuses to have sex with him?  Sure.

Was that wrong? Should I not have done that? I tell you, I gotta plead ignorance on this thing, because if anyone had said anything to me at all when I first started here that that sort of thing is frowned upon...

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9 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

I think is a difficult area to discuss openly and pragmatically.  A lot of us are carrying various baggage into the conversation, perhaps we have daughters, perhaps friends who were involved in sex work in some capacity, perhaps other things.

 

I do believe in striving for accuracy.  We cannot have open and honest discussions and improve society if we paint with a biased and broad brush.  That 14/15 "stat" doesn't appear to be a statistic at all.  It is bringing nothing but misinformation to the conversation.  I don't see that as particularly helpful.

 

On 2/23/2019 at 10:03 PM, Henry Ford said:

 

Your call if it’s solid. 

Edit: sorry, link had junk in it.  This is it:

http://www.ocfs.state.ny.us/main/reports/csec-2007.pdf

There are multiple studies.  This is one.  If you have a study you'd like to link, I'm happy to read.

 

 

Edited by Henry Ford

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27 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

Most of us do things we don't like for money.  Very few of us are lucky enough to do what we love to earn a living.

I don’t love my job.

However, I can leave at any point. I never have to do anything vile, disgusting or depraved.  My moral compass is never challenged.  Big difference. 

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8 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

I think is a difficult area to discuss openly and pragmatically.  A lot of us are carrying various baggage into the conversation, perhaps we have daughters, perhaps friends who were involved in sex work in some capacity, perhaps other things.

 

I do believe in striving for accuracy.  We cannot have open and honest discussions and improve society if we paint with a biased and broad brush.  That 14/15 "stat" doesn't appear to be a statistic at all.  It is bringing nothing but misinformation to the conversation.  I don't see that as particularly helpful.

:goodposting:

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25 minutes ago, NewlyRetired said:

This goes back to my earlier question, but I wonder if the NFL has any extra wording that could crest more punishments Kraft if he continues to fight it, and creates a long term negative story for league to deal with.

It feels like the basic punishments should only be if he got in front of the story and shut it down before it can spiral, for likely months or more.

I have no idea what happened or didn’t happen, but I think Kraft’s position could be that he went and got a massage and the woman gave him a premium package. If he didn’t do anything more than having her manually stimulate him, didn’t pay anything extra, and the woman was of legal age, would that have broken any laws?

Again, I have no idea if that’s what happened. Maybe they have him on tape asking what services were there to choose from and what the associated costs were. And maybe they have him engaging in whatever he selected as above and beyond services and then paying for it . . . all captured on film. 

As for the question I if the league can impose more sanctions if he fights it, I believe the only thing the league could do would be to lengthen a potential suspension. Given that Kraft really is not that involved with things to begin with, the only real penalty would be preventing him from watching games from the owner’s box. 

From what I have been following, it also seems like it would be difficult for the league to force him to sell the team. While that seems like an extreme outcome at this stage, the team is owned by the Kraft Group and not just Kraft. His son is much more involved in running the team as it is. 

Edited by Anarchy99

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Just now, TripItUp said:

:goodposting:

The DOJ lists the age at 15 after its study. 

NY State lists it as roughly 14 after its study.

The highest number I believe I've ever seen is 19 with 44% reporting under 17.

I'm happy to use 19.  With 44% stating that they began under 17.

If 44% began under 17 and there is any reasonable percentage at all of the remaining 56% who were sex trafficked, it is more likely than not that any given prostitute has been exploited, even without getting into any other circumstances.

 

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On ‎2‎/‎23‎/‎2019 at 11:03 PM, Henry Ford said:

 

Your call if it’s solid. 

Edit: sorry, link had junk in it.  This is it:

http://www.ocfs.state.ny.us/main/reports/csec-2007.pdf

So what I see here, is a focus group of 15 children who were sexually trafficked, and the average age when it began was 13.8.

 

I could see that age being in-line for the average starting age for sexually trafficked children, or relatively close to it.  That, however, does not translate to all sex-workers began at 14-15.  You're using a study about a small pool of grapefruits (and it's too small to be statistically significant) and applying it to all fruit. That's not how we should be using statistics if we want an open and honest conversation.

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2 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

I have no idea what happened or didn’t happen, but I thing Kraft’s position could be that he went and got a massage and the woman gave him a premium package. If he didn’t do anything more than having her manually stimulate him, didn’t pay anything extra, and the woman was of legal age, would that have broken any laws?

Again, I have no idea if that’s what happened. Maybe they have him on tape asking what services were there to choose from and what the associated costs were. And maybe they have him engaging one whatever he selected as above and beyond services and then paying for it . . . all captured on film. 

As for the question I if the league can impose more sanctions if he fights it, I believe the only thing the league could do would be to lengthen a potential suspension. Given that Kraft really is not that involved with things to begin with, the only really penalty would be preventing him to watch games from the owner’s box. 

From what I have been following, it also seems like it would be difficult for the league to force him to sell the team. While that seems like an extreme outcome at this stage, the team is owned by the Kraft Group and not just Kraft. His son is much more involved in running the team as it is. 

:goodposting:

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2 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

So what I see here, is a focus group of 15 children who were sexually trafficked, and the average age when it began was 13.8.

 

I could see that age being in-line for the average starting age for sexually trafficked children, or relatively close to it.  That, however, does not translate to all sex-workers began at 14-15.  You're using a study about a small pool of grapefruits (and it's too small to be statistically significant) and applying it to all fruit. That's not how we should be using statistics if we want an open and honest conversation.

:goodposting:

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21 hours ago, Judge Smails said:

What’s new is the use of cameras. I know that cops routinely make the rounds looking to bust parlors known for illicit activity. But never heard of them planting cameras. Almost seems unconstitutional. What about all of the people on tape getting undressed (men and women go to these massage places and extra services are the exception at the majority) and getting viewed on tape by a room full of officers while they look for the Kraft types?

25 men over 6 months? So how many were taped naked where nothing happened? So cameras in changing rooms ok too to stop potential theft?

My understanding is that after a health inspector thought that it appeared shady, the Jupiter PD faked a bomb threat, cleared the whole strip mall out, then planted the cameras.

 

Clever, but I'm not sure something a police department should be doing.  What about all of the other businesses in the strip mall that lost revenue during this?

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6 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

So what I see here, is a focus group of 15 children who were sexually trafficked, and the average age when it began was 13.8.

 

I could see that age being in-line for the average starting age for sexually trafficked children, or relatively close to it.  That, however, does not translate to all sex-workers began at 14-15.  You're using a study about a small pool of grapefruits (and it's too small to be statistically significant) and applying it to all fruit. That's not how we should be using statistics if we want an open and honest conversation.

You think that study was just a focus group of fifteen children?

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6 hours ago, Nigel said:

Questions for all of the high and mighty in here...

Have you ever bought drugs (weed, coke, whatever) illegally? Then you are in support of and complicit with the murder of innocents by drug cartels.

Ever placed a sports wager with a bookie? Then you must be an enthusiastic supporter all of the bad things the mafia/organized crime does in society.

That's pretty much the leap you're all making.

I'll go one further.  The Mexican cartels have completely taken over the avocado business.  Do you enjoy guac?  Guess what, it's covered in the blood of innocents.

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7 minutes ago, (HULK) said:

So what I see here, is a focus group of 15 children who were sexually trafficked, and the average age when it began was 13.8.

 

I could see that age being in-line for the average starting age for sexually trafficked children, or relatively close to it.  That, however, does not translate to all sex-workers began at 14-15.  You're using a study about a small pool of grapefruits (and it's too small to be statistically significant) and applying it to all fruit. That's not how we should be using statistics if we want an open and honest conversation.

And yet you still haven't provided data otherwise.

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6 hours ago, Joe Bryant said:

That's a fair question. I don't know what percentage are legit /non-prostitution type places.

Both my wife and I go to a few in my area (Maryland, just outside of DC).  Never had any funny business.  You have to keep your clothes on in some places, others you have to keep your underwear on at minimum.  Seems like that law curbs a lot of this stuff, but who knows, maybe I'm just not getting propositioned because I walked through the door with my wife?

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6 hours ago, Nigel said:

 

Have you ever bought drugs (weed ) illegally? Then you are in support of and complicit with the murder of innocents by drug cartels.

Ever placed a sports wager with a bookie? Then you must be an enthusiastic supporter all of the bad things the mafia/organized crime does in society.

 

Thank goodness my state recently legalized both of these things. Now I can sleep better at night.

Edited by Leroy Hoard

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5 minutes ago, TripItUp said:

:goodposting:

He paid extra for the premium package. Instead of giving a $10-$20 tip for a totally therapeutic massage he tipped more to have a better service level/ending. $80-$100 I thought I read. 

If he paid the same to get a more grinding lap dance at a strip club nobody would be saying a thing. 

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5 hours ago, Henry Ford said:

This is the hallmark of a legitimate establishment. 

Maybe that's it.  In Montgomery County Maryland these places cannot exist without a license for the establishment AND for all of the workers.  

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10 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

I have no idea what happened or didn’t happen, but I think Kraft’s position could be that he went and got a massage and the woman gave him a premium package. If he didn’t do anything more than having her manually stimulate him, didn’t pay anything extra, and the woman was of legal age, would that have broken any laws?

Again, I have no idea if that’s what happened. Maybe they have him on tape asking what services were there to choose from and what the associated costs were. And maybe they have him engaging one whatever he selected as above and beyond services and then paying for it . . . all captured on film. 

As for the question I if the league can impose more sanctions if he fights it, I believe the only thing the league could do would be to lengthen a potential suspension. Given that Kraft really is not that involved with things to begin with, the only really penalty would be preventing him to watch games from the owner’s box. 

From what I have been following, it also seems like it would be difficult for the league to force him to sell the team. While that seems like an extreme outcome at this stage, the team is owned by the Kraft Group and not just Kraft. His son is much more involved in running the team as it is. 

Appears he went in at 11 AM the day of the AFC Championship game (!), paid cash, got something that rhymes with a snow job, and generally knew the deal.

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I think if what you got out of a 109 page study in 7 further subdivided parts was just sections of part 4 (the focus group bit) it may be that you're kind of grasping to not believe what the study says.

But again,  if you'd like to link anything else, I'm happy to discuss.

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9 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

I have no idea what happened or didn’t happen, but I thing Kraft’s position could be that he went and got a massage and the woman gave him a premium package. If he didn’t do anything more than having her manually stimulate him, didn’t pay anything extra, and the woman was of legal age, would that have broken any laws?

Again, I have no idea if that’s what happened. Maybe they have him on tape asking what services were there to choose from and what the associated costs were. And maybe they have him engaging one whatever he selected as above and beyond services and then paying for it . . . all captured on film. 

As for the question I if the league can impose more sanctions if he fights it, I believe the only thing the league could do would be to lengthen a potential suspension. Given that Kraft really is not that involved with things to begin with, the only really penalty would be preventing him to watch games from the owner’s box. 

From what I have been following, it also seems like it would be difficult for the league to force him to sell the team. While that seems like an extreme outcome at this stage, the team is owned by the Kraft Group and not just Kraft. His son is much more involved in running the team as it is. 

My understanding is Kraft was there more than once. So that would seem pretty strong evidence that it wasn't an "accident".

As for your garage analogy earlier, if you go to mechanic in a shady area who charges much less than anywhere else, only accepts cash, all the parts have the VIN filed off and when you get there he offers to add an illegal exhaust for an extra $20, you should probably know the parts are illegal.

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Just now, (HULK) said:

Maybe that's it.  In Montgomery County Maryland these places cannot exist without a license for the establishment AND for all of the workers.  

Right.  Because they're trying to avoid sex trafficking and exploitative prostitution.

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3 minutes ago, NewlyRetired said:

Here is the latest, with court date set

=========

Patriots owner Robert Kraft officially charged with first degree solicitation

 

7 minutes ago, TobiasFunke said:

Appears he went in at 11 AM the day of the AFC Championship game (!), paid cash, got something that rhymes with a snow job, and generally knew the deal.

Tobias' link has the details.

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9 minutes ago, TobiasFunke said:

Appears he went in at 11 AM the day of the AFC Championship game (!), paid cash, got something that rhymes with a snow job, and generally knew the deal.

He wasn't in KC for the game? I guess I'm surprised at that, but what the hey he'd only seen his team reach the SB 8 times already, must be old hat.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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1 hour ago, Vike Me said:

Then you would be wrong.

Check out Rebecca Bender - https://rebeccabender.org/

 

Maybe you should check this out instead:

 

The truth about sex trafficking statistics research

Posted on May 11, 2014 by bebopper76 — Leave a comment

Below is a recent article about Sex Trafficking from the Washington Post news paper:

Lies, damned lies and sex work statistics

By Maggie McNeill Updated: March 27, 2014
(Maggie McNeill is a retired call girl. She writes at her blog, The Honest Courtesan.)

Imagine a study of the alcohol industry which interviewed not a single brewer, wine expert, liquor store owner or drinker, but instead relied solely on the statements of ATF agents, dry-county politicians and members of Alcoholics Anonymous and Mothers Against Drunk Driving. Or how about a report on restaurants which treated the opinions of failed hot dog stand operators as the basis for broad statements about every kind of food business from convenience stores to food trucks to McDonald’s to five-star restaurants?

You’d probably surmise that this sort of research would be biased and one-sided to the point of unreliable. And you’d be correct. But change the topic to sex work, and such methods are not only the norm, they’re accepted uncritically by the media and the majority of those who the resulting studies. In fact, many of those who represent themselves as sex work researchers don’t even try to get good data. They simply present their opinions as fact, occasionally bolstered by pseudo-studies designed to produce pre-determined results. Well-known and easily-contacted sex workers are rarely consulted . There’s no peer review. And when sex workers are consulted at all, they’re recruited from jails and substance abuse programs, resulting in a sample skewed heavily toward the desperate, the disadvantaged and the marginalized.

This sort of statistical malpractice has always been typical of prostitution research. But the incentive to produce it has dramatically increased in the past decade, thanks to a media-fueled moral panic over sex trafficking. Sex-work prohibitionists have long seen trafficking and sex slavery as a useful Trojan horse.  In its 2010 “national action plan,” for example, the activist group Demand Abolition writes,“Framing the Campaign’s key target as sexual slavery might garner more support and less resistance, while framing the Campaign as combating prostitution may be less likely to mobilize similar levels of support and to stimulate stronger opposition.”

But as sex worker rights organizations have repeatedly pointed out (as have organizations like UNAIDS, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International), those who are truly interested in decreasing exploitation in the sex industry would be better off supporting decriminalization of prostitution.  New South Wales, Australia, decriminalized sex work in 1995, and a subsequent government-sponsored 2012 study found ” . . . no evidence of recent trafficking of female sex workers . . . in marked contrast to the 1990s when contacted women from Thailand were common in Sydney . . . ”

New Zealand legalized prostitution in 2003. A study by the New Zealand Ministry of Justice five years later found “no incidence of trafficking,” and sex worker advocates say the law has made it easier for sex workers to report abuse, and for law enforcement to make arrests for crimes against sex workers.  Some anti-prostitution activists have tried to claim that Germany’s liberal form of legalization has encouraged sex trafficking. But they actually cite coercion among illegal sex workers (for example, those who are too young to legally work at a German brothel) and claim that their exploitation had somehow been caused by the legal framework from which those women had been excluded.

Despite plenty of evidence of the harm caused by criminalization, there’s still a tremendous amount of money in representing it as the “cure” for a situation it actually exacerbates. In an interview last May, Michael Horowitz, a fellow at the conservative Hudson Institute who led efforts to pass the federal Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, told the Las Vegas Review Journal that the anti-trafficking movement has become more about securing grants for research than protecting victims. “Now it’s just one big federal entitlement program,” he said, “and everybody is more worried about where they’re going to get their next grant.”

Most of the scary articles about sex trafficking are larded with inflated figures and phony statistics that don’t survive any serious analysis. For example, you will often read that the average sex worker enters the trade at 13, a mathematical impossibility which appears to have originated as a misrepresentation of the average age of first noncommercial sexual contact (which could include kissing, petting, etc.) reported by underage girls in one 1982 study as though it were the age they first reported selling sex. The actual average age at which they began prostitution was 16.  And though the number was already dubious when applied to underage prostitutes, it became wholly ludicrous when applied to all sex workers.

Because prostitution is illegal in most of the world, the most reliable data on the proportion of sex workers that are underage will come from places where the industry is legal and it can be studied openly, like New Zealand. And there, estimates put the figure at about 3.5%.

Another common claim is that there are 100,000 to 300,000 children locked in sex slavery in the U.S. (For just a few examples, see here, here, here, here, and here. ) That number is a distortion of a figure from a 2001 study by Richard Estes and Neil Weiner of the University of Pennsylvania, which estimated that number of “children, adolescents and youth (up to 21) at risk of sexual exploitation.” (Emphasis added.)  “Sex trafficking” was the least prevalent form of “exploitation” in their definition. Other forms included stripping, consensual homosexual relations, and merely viewing porn.  Moreover, two of the so-called “risk factors” were access to a car and proximity to the Canadian or Mexican border.  In a 2011 interview, Estes himself estimated the number of legal minors actually abducted into “sex slavery” was ” very small . . . {w}e’re talking about a few hundred people.”

Yet the myth persists. The Dallas Morning News recently took the figure to new levels of preposterousness, claiming in an editorial last November that, “In Houston alone, about 300,000 sex trafficking cases are prosecuted each year.” As defense attorney Mark Bennett pointed out on his blog, the actual figure was two. Not 200,000. Just two.  The paper did print a correction, though the correction simply deleted the original 300,000 figure from the editorial. The paper still didn’t bother to mention the actual number, perhaps it didn’t support the alarmism in the rest of the editorial.

And the distortions go on.

A mistaken, offhand guess by a panelist at symposium that sex trafficking might be the third most profitable underground industry gets repurposed as proven fact. Later, it’s changed to the second most profitable black market, then the first.

A highly flawed, anecdote-ridden feature in the New York Times Magazine that heavily relied on activist sources is repeated as gospel.

A 2004 study of street sex workers who had been murdered found that the average age of the victims was 34. This has since been cited as the average life expectancy of all street workers, or of all sex workers. That would be analogous to saying that because the average soldier who is killed in battle is 21 years old,  the average man who joins the military dies at 21. (Newsweek made this mistake in its sensationalist 2011 article “The John Next Door,” and never bothered to correct it.)

One of the more comical incidents occurred in 2011, when an activist group called the Women’s Funding Network put out a study alleging that ads for underage sex trafficking on websites like Craigslist and Backpage.com had “risen exponentially in three diverse states.” The claim was picked up by media outlets across the country, including USA Today, the Houston Chronicle, the Miami Herald, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, and the Detroit Free Press. The Village Voice, which owns Backpage.com, took a look at the methodology, a term that flatters what the study’s authors actually did. They merely asked a small sample group of people to guess the age of women pictured in ads for escort and erotic massage services. They then just assumed that the guesses were correct, and extrapolated the percentage of “underage” women in their sample  set of photos were indicative of online sex ads in general.

Not surprisingly, none authors of the “study” were credentialed academics. Still, it inspired not only a wave of media coverage, but outrage from state attorneys general and members of Congress, and promises for new laws. The activists knew exactly what they were doing. As the director of the group that conducted the study told the Voice, “We pitch {a study} the way we think you’re going to read it and pick up on it. If we give it to you with all the words and the stuff that is actually accurate — I mean, I’ve tried to do that with our PR firm, and they say, ‘They won’t read that much.’”

There have been two more highly-publicized examples of this phenomenon in just the past few weeks.  The first was a study funded by Cindy McCain and led by Dr. Dominique Roe-Sepowitz, an anti-prostitution crusader responsible for a controversial “diversion” program in Phoenix, Arizona. It claimed to have “proven” an increase of “sex trafficking” in northern New Jersey near the time of the Super Bowl, and was apparently conducted to counter the evidence that this annual story — that Super Bowls bring sex slaves” — is largely hype. The researchers claim to have subjected sex workers’ ads from Backpage.com to a “trafficking matrix.” The report doesn’t offer much explanation about how this “matrix” was designed and tested, but the text in the report indicates that among its dubious premises are the claims that tattoos are a sign of trafficking, and the dubious claim that the term kitty (a euphemism for female genitalia) is code for “underage.”  Despite the absence of methodological design data and the obvious lack of experimental controls, the authors nonetheless boldly assert that 83.7% of the ads “showed signs of trafficking.”

The other example is a study from the Urban Institute that was widely touted in the media last week (including here at The Washington Post). The researchers made bold statements about the “U.S. sex economy” based on interviews with law enforcement personnel, 73 men convicted as “pimps,” and only 36 incarcerated street workers. As the sex worker activist Melissa Gira Grant observed, the average sex worker activist follows more sex workers on Twitter than these researchers managed to find for a supposedly “landmark” study.

Furthermore, the report’s bias is clear from the skewed proportion of its interviewees: Street workers represent less than 15 percent of the trade, but were 100 percent of the sex workers interviewed for the study. Moreover, fewer than half of street workers have pimps, and about half of the pimps are actually the employees of the women they manage, not the other way around. Yet the researchers interviewed twice as many pimps as sex workers, thus inflating their perceived importance remarkably.

To the extent that it exists, coerced sex work is of course abominable, and it should be prosecuted. But the media needs to be far more skeptical of the claims of anti-sex worker activists, including those that advocate from government perches. Uncritically repeating exaggerated claims and fabricated data may seem innocuous — after all, what harm could there be in drawing more attention to the issue?  But when all sex work is illegal, consensual, of-age sex workers are far more reluctant to report coercion, abusive pimps, and underage prostitutes for fear of being arrested themselves. This makes actual sex trafficking more difficult to discover.

These moral panic proclamations and exaggerated or fabricated statistics are coming from activists who want stricter laws to criminalize prostitution, thus pushing it further underground. Spreading their message will only make actual sex slavery more difficult to detect.

Article link:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-watch/wp/2014/03/27/lies-damned-lies-and-sex-work-statistics/

Here is another good article about sex trafficking from the Washington Post:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/09/22/AR2007092201401_pf.html

 

 

Again, I'm all for discussion here.  And learning new stuff every day that changes and alters my opinions.  If people are going to post statistics, try and source them.  If you can't, maybe don't treat them as fact, because they're almost definitely wrong.

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