TODAY! Meditation remembrance for the DC Madame…and keeping it together.

Hey lovers,

Deborah Jeane Palfrey.  I can’t stop thinking about her. Her death cut me deeper than I ever could have imagined.

Her death has been heavy on the hearts of many a sex worker, indicative as it is of this juggernaut of a system that could grind us into nothing if we get caught up.  For me, I think her death translates into real fear.  A fear that is about fighting the good fight, and still going down.  If we manage to survive and thrive in a crazy industry; if we live ethically as sex workers and use all our faculties to operate our businesses and maintain what we believe is right, we still might end up dead.  Ms. Palfrey was a resourceful woman.  A woman connected, perhaps dangerously, to big players in the government.  And she got royally fucked. Someone, somewhere said, we’re going to bring her down.  We’re going to make an example of this one.  And they didn’t stop until she was swinging from a rope.

“Upon news of her death there was no shortage of those who suggested Jeane Palfrey had been killed by cloaked enemies in the government. They miss the point.

Jeane Palfrey of course had been killed by her government. She’d been unfairly ground down and hounded to death by shameless prosecutors and disinterested robed judges in our judicial branch.”

(Bill Keisling, Yardbirds.com )

I regret deeply now that I, we, did not do something more concrete to support her in her struggle.  It is a bare and unpleasant truth that the moment a sex worker comes under legal fire, s/he becomes untouchable.  Abandoned by clients, friends, etc…how did Palfrey end up in her mother’s home?  Why wasn’t she staying with me?  Where were her friends?  Where was her support network?

This blog was begun as a response to her original arrest.  She has, inadvertently, been an enormous catalyst in the sex workers rights movement.  And now she’s dead.

What the fuck.

There will be no procession, fanfare, or jazz funeral for the DC Madame.  Ain’t no crying in the streets for her, except by us, invisibly.  But I want to hold her up in this moment.

All the friends in Barcelona right now, doing the good work at the International harm reduction assoc. conference are making me remember that we are making progress.  Lateral steps toward a more just system.  And I want to thank Deborah Jeane Palfrey for her part in that.  As a contentious figure, a frustrating spin doctor, or a hero.   Whichever.

So today, beginning at midnight GMT (6pm Central, 4pm Pacific) for 24 hours we’re holding a conscious meditation, vigil, or remembrance of Ms. Deborah Jeane.  Light a candle, say some words, or sit in silent meditation with us.  We’ll be sitting for 1 hour at midnight pacific time (8am GMT) and consciously holding her, and what her death means for all of us,  in our thoughts all day.

Please join us!

thinking of you, with love and respect.

Surgeon and Faffs the Jackal

XBN SWOP East Broadcast Network on Blog Talk Radio

Here is the latest updated program listing. All shows available at www.xxbn.net www.blogtalkradio.com/swopeast Times listed are Eastern time. All programing subject to change. All previous programs are archived, please check for great guests. Thank you to Liz Berlin of Rusted Root and The Naked Heroes for their music for our programs. Listener call number 646.200.3136

  [172657]
XBN SWOP East Broadcast Network
Desiree Alliance The Desiree Alliance is a diverse, volunteer-based, sex worker-led network of organizations, communities and individuals across the US working in harm reduction, direct services, political advocacy and health services for sex workers. We provide leadership and create space for sex workers and supporters to come together to advocate for human, labour and civil rights for all workers in the sex industry.
Politics Progressive
Adults Only
4/2/2008
6:00 PM
60 Minutes
  [171963]
XBN SWOP East Broadcast Network
Guest: Renegade Evolution Profile of a Henchwoman: Often over generalized as a bit of a clockwork apocalypse, heartless capitalist and generally ruthless scum, the terrifying truth is RenEv is a stripper, Internet pxrn performer, sex workers rights advocate
Politics Progressive
Adults Only
4/3/2008
6:30 PM
60 Minutes
  [172663]
XBN SWOP East Broadcast Network
Discussing the alleged “The Pimp Lobby” Maxine Doogan, Jill Brenneman and other guests..
Politics Progressive
Adults Only
4/4/2008
12:00 PM
60 Minutes
  [171948]
XBN SWOP East Broadcast Network
Melissa Gira Bio: http://www.melissagira.com​ht Unpacking the Wired story on tech & sex work: http://www.wired.com​ht — and adding more on how sex workers internationally use technology in advocacy for human rights.   Politics Progressive
Adults Only
4/4/2008
3:00 PM
60 Minutes
  [172226]
XBN SWOP East Broadcast Network
Gracie Passette Gracie Passette is a sex worker, though no longer working directly with clients in the flesh; she now uses media to work with the issues of sexuality.   Politics Progressive
Adults Only
4/5/2008
10:00 PM
60 Minutes
  [173836]
XBN SWOP East Broadcast Network SerpentLibertine
SerpentLibertine is a veteran sex worker and activist with Sex Worker’s Outreach Project-Chicago. She has worked in many facets of the sex industry as a dominatrix, escort, masseuse, and madam, as well as behind the camera doing castin, camera, and sound on shoots. She is currently creating sex worker made videos and podcasts for her new project, Red Light District Chicago and helping organize the Desiree Alliance Conference in Chicago in Summer of 2008. You can also visit her blog at http://www.sexpr Politics Progressive
Adults Only
4/6/2008
3:00 PM
60 Minutes
  [173589]
XBN Swopeast Broadcast Network
Queen of the Sky the Most Famous Blog-Fired Flight Attendant”
Politics Progressive
Everyone
4/7/2008
4:30 PM
60 Minutes
  [171042]
XBN Special Guest Der Gregor
Der Gregor- FEMINISM UNMODIFIED Politics Progressive
Adults Only
4/7/2008
11:00 PM
60 Minutes
  [173109]
XBN SWOP East Broadcast Network Bill Nelson
Bill Nelson Politics Progressive
Adults Only
4/8/2008
9:00 PM
60 Minutes
  [173858]
XBN SWOP East Broadcast Network
The Naked Heroes, time to be determined Politics Progressive
Everyone
4/10/2008
9:00 PM
60 Minutes
  [173647]
TBD
TBD Politics Progressive
Everyone
4/22/2008
10:00 PM
60 Minutes

Another Spitzer twist Encounters “Sex Trio” caught with pants down

http://media.www.theticker.org/media/storage/paper909/news/2008/03/31/TheTickler/Encounters.sex.Trio.Caught.With.Pants.Down-3291811-page2.shtml

They had tied their captives to the walls.

Encounters “Sex Trio” caught with pants down

.. Encounters’ staff members were arrested in what campus peace officers call “a sick and twisted case.” The organization was found to be running a sex ring from their office in the Newman Vertical Campus. Police officials plan to bring charges of sex trafficking and prostitution against the top-level staff members.

Authorities say the sex ring came to their attention in February after advertisements were seen in Baruch’s weekly newspaper, The Ticker. They featured a scantily clad young girl dressed in a leather bondage outfit. Officials say a girl was found chained under a desk in the office and was malnourished. The Red Cross is providing temporary aid to the girl until her family is found.

New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelley explained that the Manhattan South Task Force kept a close watch on the Encounters’ office and its editor-in-chief, Jana Kasperkevic.

“Detectives and Emergency Service Personal kept 24-hour surveillance on Ms. Kasperkevic and her associates. Phone taps and hidden cameras were placed within the office suite located at the Newman Vertical Campus, and they recorded several conversations with customers interested in soliciting sexual services,” said Kelley.

Police officials confiscated anything associated with the sex ring from the Encounters’ office. Upon entering, emergency service customers interested in soliciting sexual services,” said Kelley.

Police officials confiscated anything associated with the sex ring from the Encounters’ office. Upon entering, emergency service personal found a number of discarded contraceptive devices on the floor and a strong odor that permeated the air of the office.

“I’ve been on the force for almost 20 years and I’ve never seen anything as shocking as that. People were still chained to the walls and they were covered in dried candle wax,” said Detective Lieutenant Orville Redenbacher. “It has been tough to shake off. I just hope those sick kids get the book thrown at them.”

Encounters experienced a major revamp since Jana Kasperkevic took the post from the past editor-in-chief, Dmitry Omelyanenko, in December 2007. According to staff members, the transition from a literary arts magazine to a major sex outlet was almost immediate.

“I was a little uneasy about the ball gag and head harness in the office at first, but when I heard it was Jana’s, I wasn’t so surprised. I should have known she was running a sex ring after she started leaving people chained in the office overnight,” said Annabelle Chu, former Encounters’ creative director.

Managing Editor Jacqueline Chancer and Creative Director Edward Drakhlis are also being charged as co-conspirators with Kasperkevic. The trio could face up to 15 years in a federal penal institution if they are found guilty of sex trafficking and prostitution.

It is rumored that former Governor Eliot Spitzer was referred to this particular sex service whenever the Emperor’s Club VIP was overbooked.

“I should have known something was weird when Spitzer tried to enter the building. Initially, I explained to him that he needed to enter his social security if he did not have an ID card, but he threatened to have me fired if I did not bring him to the Encounters suite immediately,” said Sergeant Daniel Muniz, a Baruch College campus security officer.

Kasperkevic, Chancer and Drakhlis, better known as the “Sex Trio” by authorities, are expected to post bail at their arraignment. The district attorney’s office is expected to ask to have their passports held since each of them is known to have connections with countries in Eastern Europe.

NY Times Makes Attemp at Correction

Editors’ Note: March 30, 2008
An article on March 16 profiling three sex workers in the wake of Gov. Eliot Spitzer’s resignation after revelations that he patronized prostitutes misconstrued how two of the women, identified by the pseudonyms Faith O’Donnell and Sally Anderson, said they earned a living. The resulting misrepresentation of the two women’s work included a headline that referred to them as “high-priced call girls” and a paragraph that said they practiced “the 21st-century version of the oldest profession.”

The reporter who interviewed them, one of two who worked on the article, never explicitly asked the women whether they traded sex for money or were prostitutes, call girls or escorts; he used the term “sex workers,” a term they used themselves that describes strippers and lap dancers as well as prostitutes. Though Ms. Anderson advertises herself as a “dominatrix with a holistic approach,” he did not ask her whether that meant she also performed sex acts for money, nor did he ask Ms. O’Donnell what her work actually was before characterizing it. He and the editors should have explored whether he had determined these things precisely.

After the article was published, both women contacted The Times and said they do not perform sex for money; Ms. O’Donnell refused to be specific about what she does.

Because of an editing error, the article misstated the political work of the New York chapter of the Sex Workers Outreach Project, a group in which Ms. Anderson is active; it advocates the decriminalization of prostitution, not its legalization, arguing that sex work should be regulated through labor law like other jobs but not subject to additional restrictions. Another editing error changed the meaning of Ms. Anderson’s observation that “no one” had come to an event she had helped plan to highlight difficulties faced by prostitutes; Ms. Anderson meant that no journalists had attended.

Twitter, iPhones Let Sex Workers Spread Their Gospel

By Regina Lynn at Wired

When the Eliot Spitzer sex scandal heated up headlines earlier this month, every media outlet in the country suddenly began scrambling to talk to a sex worker.

The downfall of Spitzer, the New York governor who resigned after his private sex life unexpectedly became public, generated an enormous amount of interest in the escort industry and in Ashley Alexandra Dupré, the woman he had been seeing.

But the whirlwind didn’t catch sex workers and activists lying down. They organized a media blitz through blogs, Tumblr, Twitter and shared Google Docs. They kept tabs on which reporters approached the topic with respect and which didn’t. And perhaps for the first time, they made their voices heard in mainstream venues like Fox News and CNN — organizations that cannot be dismissed as fringe or adults-only media.

More…

Spitzer linked to most recent NYC bust

Woman arrested by NYC Vice still no legal consequences for Spitzer…

spitzer2.jpg

From Gawker:

We never thought we’d see the day when the Governor of New York’s illegal sex trysts would give us only a renewed sense of ennui, but: Okay, we get it. The guy liked hookers. If the Post keeps this up, lots of other valuable yellow journalism will fail to make the front page.

In (Partial) Defense of Eliot Spitzer

by Tristan Taormino the Village Voice

When news of Eliot Spitzer’s link to a prostitution agency first broke, “Why Do Powerful Men Cheat?” stories sprang up all around us, from morning shows to the nightly news. Within the framework of the cheating-husband narrative, no one made the distinction between employing a sex worker and having an affair with a “civilian,” except to emphasize that Spitzer cheated and broke the law. I think a distinction should be made about his choice of sex partner. When someone cheats with a civilian, he usually spends more time on courtship than between the sheets: There are text messages, e-mails, phone calls, secret rendezvous, whispered sweet nothings, gifts, even romantic dates. When someone hooks up with a sex worker, while some of those elements may be in play, they are a lot less likely to be part of the equation.

Melissa Gira Grant (melissagira.com), a reporter, sex worker, and sex-workers’ rights activist, says: “Some men go to sex workers for closeness and intimacy—they want to cuddle, and that’s what they are not getting at home. But for others, it’s not emotionally therapeutic at all, it’s the same as getting a deep sports massage.”