Thursday, March 29, 2007

Porn Republic

Awesome fact from Adult Video News and Max Blumenthal via Radly Balko (via Glenn Greenwald)

Balko is discussing the firing of Paul Charlton US Attorney for Arizona

The emails indicate that Charlton frequently butted heads with higher-ups in DOJ over priorities and procedures.

[snip]

The porn industry publication Adult Video News and the Nation’s Max Blumenthal

revealed last week that Charlton also came under fire from federal “Porn Czar” Brent Ward for his reluctance to take on federal obscenity cases. But the case in question had a curious twist. The government wanted to charge a porn distributor for shipping obscene movies across state lines. The problem is, another Arizona distributor just a few miles a way was selling several of the same movie titles. The second distributor had recently declared bankruptcy, and was being run by trustees for the federal government to fill its federal tax obligations.

The unpatriotic Balko does not report the name or address of the US government operated Porn shop, so patriotic readers will not be able to do their bit to reduce the deficit (I guess he is a libertarian and opposes censorship of porn but also opposes socialist porn).

However, he does make the brilliant observation
It’s sad, but not terribly surprising, that it would take accusations of excessive partisanship – that is, unfairly using the office to gain a political advantage over the Democrats – to spur the Democrats in Congress to take any meaningful action. Trample on the rights of U.S. citizens, and the Democrats largely look the other way – can’t be seen as soft on crime, or on national security. But trample on the political prospects of Democrats, and the subpoenas fly.
Ouch.

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