Time to say R.I.P. to V.I.P. 'paedo scandal'?

At last, a welcome return to some semblance of sanity as the “Westminster VIP paedophile ring” goes up in smoke – a smoke ring, as it were, or a stinking but otherwise insubstantial blast of gas from arse-talking fantasists and a few politicians on the make.
The most prominent of the politicians, Tom Watson MP, was recently elected deputy leader of the Labour Party but now finds his reputation slithering into the toilet faster than a dose of diarrhoea. Last night he faced criticism in parliament from prime minister David Cameron, no less. He made a spirited fight of it in his reply but will soon face tough scrutiny from his own party too.
The most colourful revelation in the last couple of days reached us from the Daily Mail, where we learned that Watson invited the police to his office in parliament to take a statement from a certain Mike Broad, said to be a notorious online gossip and conspiracy theorist. Talking about the Elm Guest House, long bruited as a house of horrors for the sexual abuse of children, Broad claimed “half the bloody Cabinet” went there, and said a neighbour told him “two transit vans took away children”. So, not just a few abused kids, oh no. Keeping those VIP loins a-thrusting required industrial scale deliveries and collections!
This all follows a landmark Panorama documentary on BBC TV, which exposed key  witnesses “Darren” and “David” as grievously unreliable figures. Darren, we heard, was a convicted bomb hoaxer; David backed off from his earlier claims of sexual abuse by the late Lord Brittan, saying at first they were a “joke” but he had been pressed into sticking with the allegations by an ex-social worker called Chris Fay, who has a conviction for fraud.
“Darren”, as Heretic TOC readers may recall, accused two of my friends, claiming Peter Righton was a brutal murderer and Charles Napier was a partner in crimes of violent sexual assault. Both of them had been members of PIE’s executive committee back in the 1970s when I was Chair. Darren had also corroborated yarns emanating from the most notorious of all these anonymous witnesses, “Nick”, who claimed to have witnessed three murders by VIP paedophiles and implicated former prime minister Edward Heath in a VIP sex abuse ring.
Nick alleged that for a decade he had been farmed out as a boy by his father to a paedophile ring including Ted Heath, former Home Secretary Leon (later Lord) Brittan and Harvey Proctor MP, as well as two generals and the former heads of the secret security and spying agencies, MI5 and MI6.
It was Nick’s outlandish allegations that a senior police officer incredibly described as credible and true, thereby setting up the police as judge and jury in the case.
Panorama focused on one of Nick’s claims,  namely that he witnessed a hit-and-run murder of a boy in Kingston, committed by his abusers to scare him into silence. A thorough investigation by the programme could find no report of any such incident in Kingston at the time alleged: there were no newspaper reports, no eye witnesses, no child reported missing. In other words, the claim was patently false.
In truth, Nick’s story was falling apart well before Panorama. Operation Midland has been launched by the police specifically to investigate Nick’s claims but had failed to come up with any solid evidence to support them. And a key figure against whom allegations had been made, Harvey Proctor MP, gave a feisty press conference in which he not only strenuously denied the claims (well, he would, wouldn’t he?) but also spelt out in detail their horrific nature, giving cogent reasons for their implausibility. He was no friend of Ted Heath, for instance, with whom he was supposed to have jointly committed offences.
Proctor would soon find heavyweight support from Lord Ken Macdonald QC, a former director of public prosecutions, who warned that detectives investigating historical child abuse allegations should not indulge “narcissists and fantasists”, saying they should conduct “impartial, objective investigations” and there was a danger concern for victims is “morphing into a medieval contempt for the accused”.
Even Mark Williams-Thomas joined the sceptics. This ex-police officer, the man who opened the floodgates to the Jimmy Savile scandal, warned that many of the allegations against political figures were unsubstantiated. Building up a crescendo of bad omens for the believe-any-allegation-unquestioningly lobby,  radio broadcaster Paul Gambaccini lashed out at Scotland Yard and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) for failing to apologise over their handling of discredited sexual abuse allegations he had faced. He criticised the police for publicly inviting more “victims” to make complaints against named individuals such as himself, smearing them without evidence and encouraging fantasists. Fellow radio star Sandi Toksvig said she had been approached by detectives, who invited her to make allegations against Gambaccini or others.
It would be interesting to know how all this is playing with the wider public. Tom Watson has long been building an image for himself as a fearless crusader against powerful vested interests, coming to national prominence for holding global media baron Rupert Murdoch to account when his News of the World tabloid was in trouble for phone hacking. This was a much more worthy endeavour than his squalid bullying of dying peer Lord Brittan, and was probably the main factor in his winning the Labour deputy leadership.
So many will see him as a noble figure who has at worst been naïve in believing the wrong people. Not his parliamentary colleagues though. They know him at close quarters and can see through his populist opportunism: he is neither loved nor respected.
The Anna Raccoon blog has got his number too, where industrious guest writer Petunia Winegum did a hilarious Billy Bunter parody of the portly Watson recently. Give yourself a treat and read this piece of sustained comic brilliance: it neatly exposes the Fat Owl’s dubious methods.
Most satisfying for me in all this was the exposure of an outrageous bluff by Watson. You might remember that a good while back he was the first MP to claim there was a “powerful paedophile network linked to Parliament and No 10”.  As the Daily Mail put it,  he “used the fact that an innocent Tory MP had a paedophile relative to bolster his claims”. He told the House of Commons in October 2012, without giving any names, that there was a child abuser who “boasted of his links to a senior aide of a former Prime Minister”.
We now know this “boast” was nothing whatever to do with an implied paedophile conspiracy. We have been told he had been referring to Charles Napier, whose half-brother is John Whittingdale, who was once Margaret Thatcher’s political secretary.
If there was a “boast”, it was not Napier’s but Watson’s – and an empty one at that. His boasted knowledge of a VIP conspiracy reaching right to the heart of government at No 10 Downing Street, was just a bluff, an attempt – a successful attempt – to hoodwink the nation, in the full, clear, knowledge that there was no merit in his claim.
Not that Whittingdale is quite as “innocent” at the Daily Mail claims. As Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport in the present government, he is currently doing his damnedest to preside over the destruction of the BBC, in an orgy of cultural vandalism that constitutes a far greater crime than anything his half-brother Charles has ever done. But sadly Charles is the one currently serving a 13-year prison sentence, not John.
As I say, we still have little idea of how Tom Watson’s come-uppance is going down with the public. Will he be discredited, or will he be seen as a victim of the Establishment? And will the Metropolitan Police get away with their disgraceful arrogance in the face of Panorama’s exposure of their foolish faith in Nick’s “credible and true” tripe? Instead of ’fessing up, and admitting the BBC had done a good job, they went into attack mode, furiously arguing that the programme “could compromise the evidential chain should a case ever proceed to court”. In other words, as Stephen Pollard pointed out in the Daily Telegraph, “no journalist should ever investigate anything, because any investigation by journalists upsets the police applecart. That is the nature of investigative journalism. That police statement is, in its own way, as idiotic and inappropriate as the earlier statement that Nick’s allegations are true.”
Refreshingly, for an opinion piece in such a right-wing paper as the Telegraph, Pollard praised the Panorama programme, saying it had been “…surely one of the most important programmes the BBC has ever broadcast.”
I would like to agree. It would be great to see it as a new beginning, a sign of the tide turning against the excesses of recent years, in which, as Pollard wrote, “Ever since the revelations about Jimmy Savile emerged, we have been engulfed in a form of mania about paedophilia.”
I would like to think we have passed the darkest hour, but we have been here before and seen false dawns. There were earlier panics, were there not? There was the mania over Satanic abuse; there was the “recovered memory” fad, and much more. These bubbles were pricked, their absurdity exposed, only to be replaced by new nonsense. A resurgence of similar alarmism in as yet unexpected guises can safely be predicted until such time as there is a deep underlying shift in the economic and social conditions that are driving them.
Still, there has to be some hope that the Goddard enquiry, the overarching mega-investigation into child sexual abuse in all its manifestations going back as far as living memory can stretch in the UK and perhaps further, will take on board the recent hiccups and steer a course away from permanent hysteria.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
71 Comments
Newest
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

[…] reservations over the “pro-contact” description. In a comment on Heretic TOC last year as Ethane72, he more reasonably spoke of […]

A.

Hey, sorry to bother, but I made three comments on your latest and they aren’t showing as awaiting approval. Spam filter acting up again? Of course, this one too may get caught…

Front Row

I think part of the problem for those who belonged to the ‘child emancipation movement’ was it looked rather like a bunch of blokes seeking a way to legitimise access to kids for their own gratification. That is the legacy imprint left in the public consciousness by PIE.
Frank Furedi made a valid point a while back when he said it is not the kids themselves who were asking for the agenda PIE set. If PIE had allowed itself to be shaped and informed more by other progressives, including women and young people themselves, then it may have had an enduring appeal as an organisation by being shaped by a more inclusive body of people. Reaching out to women and children, canvassing their views. Harnessing experience perspectives concerns and insights, making a difference in day to day life.
Having said that, to be fair, NVSH was once a fabric of Dutch society with several hundred thousand members, of both genders, all ages, and across all social spectrums. So it isn’t simply that PIE was misguided in its ideas, but that it failed to learn and find relevance in a climate of increasingly hostile far-right political forces. There is no question that apocalyptic American activism and panic-theory, has had a massive impact in shaping the narratives of sex and gender ever since the Raegan-Thatcher era; in the UK, in Holland and the EU, in western-dependent post-Communist countries, Throughout Africa (Uganda esp), and even Japan and the far east, have not escaped the global moral and ideological hegemony of the American right and Catholic church.
The way forward as I see it is to trust young people and children themselves. To be aware of their own perspectives concerns and inquisitiveness. Let them explore naturally as they develop. Guided, empowered, and protected from unwanted or unhealthy advances, not hidden from the meaning of intimacy. Sexual abuse thrives on ignorance, secrecy, and disempowerment.
The answer is therefore education, openness, access and empowerment. Not simply mediated through adults and authority figures (possible departure from Furedi here?), but conferred directly so that children and young people are able to gradually make informed choices themselves. Kids mature at different ages in different ways. The one size fits all approach takes no account of this. How can it be that the legal age of responsibility is 10, yet 17 is the age someone can drive a car. So fresh forward-looking approaches are needed. The goal being that children and young people should enjoy good levels of health wellbeing and fulfilment, and have a right to that.
Western society is very bodyphobic and paranoid about everyday nature. There is a culture of sensual negativity, parental anxiety, and peer embarrassment. This is not healthy. We need to have more faith in our young people. Progressives need to be involved in the debate, share their perspectives, and integrate better ways forward within recognised organisations working in the field of health, education, politics, arts and so on. What would the best spirit of the 60’s look like in the digital age?
I cite how sex workers groups have influenced policy direction at Amnesty, as one example of how positive change can occur.
Personally, I’m happy to look for any common ground regardless of whoever has a pariah-tag – especially as no-one has ever protected me.

Dissident

In all due fairness, anyone who comments that children themselves are not included in arguments from organizations like PIE needs to be asked to take a long, hard look at the simple political and legal reality that children and young adolescents find themselves in. Their opinions are not routinely courted for anything, at least not in a serious manner, and they are very marginalized and cut off from the political apparatus. In their case, this marginalization is a magnitude worse than minority groups that comprise adults, because at least the latter had sufficient civil rights that allowed them to vote, enter the labor voice, publicly speak, and form demonstrations, even if those efforts were often ignored or eventually slapped down. Those who are legally children lack all of those important and fundamental rights, which effectively render them not second-class citizens but third class citizens, or what some have referred to as “pre-citizens.” Of course, they have most certainly been raised and heavily indoctrinated to NOT see themselves as a legitimate minority group at all, which is why they tend to rebel against their circumstances via various forms of misbehavior, much as black chattel slaves did on the pre-Civil War plantations.
Their status was beginning to change with the onset of the youth liberation movement during the 1970s in America before the Thatcher and Reagan era of the 1980s knocked the burgeoning movement back. Nevertheless, it still hadn’t advanced enough to reach PIE’s attention or sphere of influence on their side of the Atlantic before the Big Derailment came. This situation is now again beginning to change as the youth lib movement is slowly but surely beginning to pick up steam, and you can rest assured that many of the underage activists who speak on the youth groups extant on social network platforms are not keen on having their sexual lives controlled, or at the very least left out of the discussion altogether. But it’s still going to take some time to build up enough steam to the point where it can no longer be dismissed or overlooked by mainstream political outlets, let alone the anti and protectionist brigade.
Hence, it’s important for all of us to understand this political reality facing everyone anchored with the legal status of “minor” whenever it’s said that the voices are younger people are not considered. It’s most certainly not pro-choice MAPs or any genuinely pro-youth movement which has made a point not to consider the voices of younger people. It’s simply extraordinarily difficult at this time to get the opinions of younger people listened to and considered in any way that is taken serious by the adult-controlled political apparatus, because their status as “minors” results in their lacking many civil rights that even adult MAPs enjoy.

Dissident

Thank you for pointing this out, Tom. All very interesting to know!
I think that had the youth liberation movement continued unabated during the 1970s, and the Big Derailment hadn’t occurred, younger underagers would have gradually become easy to get involved in fighting for their rights. As an admittedly speculative but logically possible example, let’s imagine an alternate timeline where the sequence of events which led to the Big Derailment of the great progressive landscape of the ’70s didn’t occur, e.g., the bogus reports in the late ’70s of a CP epidemic were swiftly exposed before gaining any cultural traction; the election of Thatcher and Reagan and the political atmosphere their regimes created had never occurred; the publication of Michelle Remembers circa 1980 that got both the Satanic ritual abuse and “repressed memory” fad going hadn’t occurred or didn’t become a best seller; the tragic murder of Adam Walsh in Hollywood, Florida circa 1981 that was the catalyst for so much of the hysteria was averted; and the subsequent rise of “trash” TV talk shows never caught on in the ratings.
If all of that never occurred, it’s quite possible that in those pre-Internet years younger people, including pre-teens, would have eventually been given the option to set up committees for discussion of various issues that were located within the schools themselves. These would be similar to the committees that children aged 6 and above routinely participate in at the Sudbury schools to help participate with the older students and teaching staff in forming the campus rules and academic curricula, redress grievances with any of the teachers or each other, etc. These could have been places where both high school and adult youth liberationist activists would have been able to formally approach these younger people to get their insights and possible participation in politics without having to do “creepy” things such as hanging around school yards or in the halls of the heavily fortified totalitarian schools that continue to dominate the landscape today, in order to get their thoughts. I think if youth lib and the general progressive environment of the ’70s had indeed continued apace in this manner, then the establishment of such committees along with increasingly democratized schools may have been a logical extension of the progressive changes instituted during the late ’60s and ’70s had they been allowed to continue uninterrupted. But this status quo never had a chance to get established during PIE’s heyday before the sequence of events which quickly led to the Big Derailment had ensued.
Nowadays, of course, we have the Internet and its social network forums that are allowing increasingly younger people to not only become aware of the youth liberation movement and network with adult activists across the political spectrum, but to make their voices known and heard in general. So far, though, because of how heavily monitored the social networking forums tend to be, it has thus far been the video sharing communities like YouTube and its emerging competitors (e.g., Vimeo and DailyMotion) where increasingly younger pre-teens are gradually making their voices and expressions heard. This is still an uphill battle for these emergent youth voices, of course, due to the legion of protectionists and antis who regularly argue loudly that our society’s rampant age segregation and monitoring of what youths can and cannot say in public venues be stringently enforced. Hence, it’s becoming increasingly easier to hear from and contact younger members of the youth community, but it presently remains very difficult due to all the societal forces arrayed against the trend.
Nevertheless, those who make statements implying that it is, or ever was, a cinch to get the voices of children heard and involved really need to seriously consider the political situation people under find themselves in. Otherwise, they’re engaging in an extreme case of intellectual dishonesty and evasion.

Dissident

Moving on, I agree there are interesting new opportunities for cross generational connection in the internet era. But there is the big danger of being accused of online “grooming”.
And therein lies one of the major current impediments towards free networking between adults and the emergent youth voices. Anyone who ignores this when pontificating about why we do not get more younger people involved in our arguments are really engaging in some serious intellectual evasive maneuvers. The still ongoing “pedo panic” is one of the major tools used by the powers that be to regulate and argue against the gradually rising trend of youth voices and expression, and I think it’s more than a coincidence or a mere example of conspiracy thinking that this just happens to act as a barrier towards youths progressing further in terms of gaining a greater general voice in society. If they are only allowed to readily engage with each other, they are going to be fated to remain a group without a voice in our greater, gerontocentric society… and the powers that be surely know this.

Front Row

‘In all due fairness.’
Even you got the gas Dissident.
Disappointing.

Dissident

I’m sorry that my stomach problems disappoint you, Front Row!

His name was Shame

Tom Watson should be hanged by his fat neck until dead.

Front Row

Re; TOC reply.
I accept what you say about PIE’s position being a product of the 70’s, and should therefore be understood in the broader cultural context of the time. It is unfortunate that you are regularly invited to account for some of the more sensationalist repackaging of valid areas of discussion.
I have seen a clip of the Australian documentary, and it is like a showtrial.
Having been born in the 70’s rather than having lived through those heady days, it is easy for me to look with retrospect at the naivety. But there was also a lot of valuable and progressive contributions made by disparate intelligentsia and artists from Kate Millett to Michel Foucault to Alan Ginsberg and many others. The diaries of perhaps the outstanding American intellect of the past century Susan Sontag, are replete with warm frank sexual awakenings and bisexuality from well below the current age of consent. (Difficult for current sensibilities). These were figures of phenomenal insight who actively tried to shape our society for the better with the contributions they made in their given fields. The Gay Liberation Front was a product of fearlessness in the seventies, and a direct descendent of the emancipation now enjoyed by many LGBT folk. Queer emancipation, human emancipation, still has some way to go.
Much of what we see now is actually a legacy of the regressive EIGHTIES, rather than the two decades previous to it. Freedom and liberty is under attack on a variety of fronts, in fact, with a hitherto unseen zeal thanks to the pervasive power of digital technology, surveillance, legal profiteering, and bad legislation such as the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2001, the Sexual Offences Act 2003, the Mental Health act 1983 and 2007, to name but three. Criminalising new categories of people and victimising some of the most marginal in society.
Perhaps it’s gender that has me looking at things in an alternative way, and I neither condemn nor condone PIE – I’m just not going to play that game. But if anyone thinks Virtuous Paedophiles is this generations answer to PIE, and a good idea, then they are also at best, naïve.

Dissident

This is a response to Front Row’s response to me down below to avoid what I have come to call the “spaghetti strand syndrome” of WordPress:
For whatever it’s worth, Front Row, while I do agree that VirPed has done some good for our community via the aspect of its agenda that disseminates accurate information making it clear that MAPs/kinds are not immoral monsters whose attraction bases are defined entirely by a lecherous, out of control sexual desires towards minors, I am certainly critical of its overt moralizing message, just as Tom has in the past.
That message not only has the potential to do much as you said in your above post while conscripting or recruiting many MAPs into being complicit with such a major social control agenda directed at their own community, but there is another thing to consider. Their message is conducted with the goal of appeasing a powerful component of the anti-pedo hysteria rather than doing its part not to worsen it, which it could do by putting the org’s major focus on getting accurate, scientifically verifiable information to the public and researchers. Instead, its moralistic message explicitly concedes to an extreme attitude held by the majority of the general public. This, they feel, is is not only more likely to win law-abiding MAPs more acceptance by society, but it’s predicated upon agreeing with the hysteria’s contention that the interests of MAPs and children, and by extension MAPs and society in general, are mutually exclusive interests. You do not have to have an overt, “in your face” pro-choice message to convince the public otherwise.
As a result of this, VirPed only has strong appeal to a limited segment of the MAP population, which I certainly do think is the case of pandering to the public at the expense of the MAP community overall. This is in contrast to orgs like B4U-ACT, which I believe focuses on a few important issues that are inclusive to most or all members of the MAP community regardless of personal ideology on the contact issue, while at the same time not off-putting the general public and professional researchers it seeks to work with towards goals that all MAPs can likely agree with.

Front Row

It seems an interesting accident of timing that VP should appear just as the German Model is being proposed in UK guardianista circles as a ‘humane’ and mature approach to linking paedophiles into services, supposedly appeasing paedohysteria. That’s how it’s being sold. I don’t buy that. I don’t see that kind of manipulation as humane.
Rather than supporting open non-coercive and robust dialogue VP is another means among many, whereby self-identified or intelligence-identified individuals can be steered into an environment where data-gathering can be done in a way that becomes lawful (like Parallel Construction), and consequently steps taken in relation to the given individual; including, being chaperoned onto the merry-go-round of doctors social workers key workers paperwork meetings medication hearings tribunals appeals projects therapy’s activities, ad-infinitum. The whole apparatus of statutory social control. So what begins as a form of emotional seduction, will often end in someone being steered into the system without good cause. No crime, no allegation, no trial, no evidence, nothing. A bitter pill.
For a start VP is an intelligence goldmine. FBI profilers are thinking how great it is to have a website which appeals to the post-ejaculate self-loathing male ego: Where there is lust and guilt and afflicted souls.. secular pastors and counsellors and rescuers soon follow. Virtuous Paedophiles; the assuming dualism the name itself is totally ridiculous. (very like the ‘black and white’ bs that used to get indirectly gassed in my direction years ago, and still does in various formats.) It’s purposely leading. And seductively false.
Problem is, it is predicated on a number of false assumptions. That there is relative uniformity of experience of behaviour and of response. When in actual fact, everyone is different, some feel no guilt, some feel no sexual attraction towards children, some have their aesthetics and preferences, and do not meet the diagnostic standards that the system itself sets. There is enormous variety of human experience. I think that is something to celebrate and advocate, not scrutinise distort and pathologise.
The law should be the beginning and end of everything, and fuck moralisers, rescuers and community do-gooders who take it upon themselves to obstruct that.
Sex workers have to deal with all these kind of hurdles too, as do other marginalised groups such as Blacks Roma Aborigines Inuit’s and First Nationers. ‘Integrationist’ agenda’s at the most conventional common-denominator is totally illiberal. That’s what streamlining suspected or self-confessed ‘pedo’s’ into services is all about, and the same for a variety of counter-cultural non-conformists.
I think it would be good to get away from this pernicious lie there are monsters on the edge, who are really nice people inside and just need some ‘help’. I do not accept this lie of moral and psychological enfeeblement. There is crime, or there is no crime. Simple.. not all these lies about potentially ‘dangerous individuals’ (see Foucault) who have to be engaged by society community agency and/or invisible actors.
No.
There are individuals comfortable at peace with their own feelings, and entirely responsible and lawful in their conduct. People Who have never presented any danger to anyone or conducted themselves in any criminal or inappropriate way towards any anyone. VP is not my idea of networking and exchanging perspectives. Each is responsible for their own words and conduct, and I am suspicious of universal-declaratory homepages and disclosure-inviting forums. Not for my sake, but for other people who may be too naïve to see VP for what it really is.

Front Row

An air-gap between posts might help too…
of. any. W.

Dissident

The following is a response to Ethan’s response to me in a thread down below, so that my response doesn’t get stretched to the width of a strand of spaghetti.
I cry “filibuster”! Seriously, though, it would be a lot more conducive to conversation if you broke a mammoth reply like that down into pieces so you could get a discussion about each.
Oftentimes, Ethan, I lack the time to so precisely format responses. Much of the length is “artificial” if you take into account the excerpted points from previous posts that I’m trying to respond to.
There was a lot of positive reaction to Todd’s articles as well as the predictable loud hate messages. We will never win over bigots, but our situation could improve dramatically if even a minority of fair-minded people decide they have to stick up for us (if we’re law-abiding). And our sympathizers are not going to shout their support with glee — it is bound to be a depressing subject for most people.
I don’t begrudge the good that Todd accomplished. I’m simply pointing out that, as you actually noted, winning over hard core bigots is not going to happen simply because of an anti-contact ideology, and these bigots dominate the mainstream talk shows that appear both on TV and online. Winning over the many Nons who are “on the fence” about the issue is much more possible, and they tend to be open-minded thinkers who are not likely to be “put off” by the pro-choice ideology as long as it’s presented to them by MAPs who have proven themselves decent individuals, have the right approach, and do not “shove” the controversial ideology in their faces.
You present people like Todd as having made a strategic decision about how to present themselves. I think it’s more a matter of us all giving our genuine beliefs, and the media will allow voices through that meet certain criteria — one being that we don’t want to legalize sex with kids.
Which is your way of saying, by rhetorical implication, that the biased media will only let through the voices who tow the party line, and that this is a strategic advantage for MAPs and MAP orgs that push the anti-contact attitude. It’s a type of strategy that appeals to prejudice rather than the scientific data, and IMO it’s more disingenuous than simply having no major “line” on the more controversial issues. Whether you like it or not, I think the B4U-ACT org has accomplished this, and its successful workshops and attendances at symposiums despite the limits you feel it has for not pandering to any particular type of bias attest to that. Before his very recent death, B4U-ACT member Paul Christiano had as many interviews as Todd has in both online and offline media venues, and to a very similar degree of public an professional support. He also wisely strayed away from the sensationalistic, pedo-hating media outlets that Todd has been courting of late. Paul always did just fine without going into any detail about the contact issue, spouting neither overtly controversial or pandering ideologies. I honestly think Todd should follow his lead, rather than follow the instincts of his own emotional issues (and you know that I know Todd quite well, and I’m not saying this to be mean despite our recent falling out, but simply because I’ve always said that and believe it’s sound advice).
A precondition for society even entertaining the idea that sex with prepubescents might be OK is believing that we can control our desires.
Even though my attraction is focused upon young adolescents, rather than pre-pubescents, since the cultural instinct of the public is frequently to conflate the two, I think what I’m about to say still holds weight: As I’ve said many times before, many pro-choicers like me who are “out” in real life have made it quite clear that we are as capable of controlling our desires in accordance with the law as any anti-contacter. We have readily explained the many good reasons why following the law is far better than the alternative of breaking it for all concerned, and those who are open-minded and know and respect us as people see this quite clearly, and any change we seek is also done within the boundaries of the law and the U.S. Constitution.
If it’s true that anti-contact pedophiles are better able to resist temptation (and I can’t swear that’s true) it could well be because we truly believe in more and greater potential harm to a girl (or boy) and with more reasons to deter us and those reasons strongly felt, we’re more likely to remain deterred.
As noted here by Tom a day or two ago, I don’t believe there is any evidence that ideology decreases someone’s outright yearning for the physical aspect of their natural attraction base, including MAPs. Hence, I think all the evidence suggests that pro-choice and anti-contact/anti-choice MAPs have to struggle equally hard to stay within the bounds of the law. I don’t think it’s required that we believe, or convince the public that we believe (whatever the case may be), that our attractions would be likely to harm a boy or girl in some sort of intrinsic fashion in order to provide more than a sufficient deterrent to avoid breaking the law; the harm they could easily endure via iatrogenic and sociogenic factors is more than enough. I won’t present myself in a disingenuous fashion or ignore pertinent scientific data to appease the public, because the law being what it is today is more than sufficient to convince the lot of us to stay our hands.

Dissident

Yes, I know this, Tom, and yes I know that everyone who complains about this has many very good points, including the time constraint issues and the difficulties imposed upon the moderator; and yes, I know I do have a problem adhering to brevity that I most definitely need to work on better than I have, as it’s difficult to break with an ingrained personal style. As I pointed out before in a discourse with Jasmine, however, the matter of brevity vs. thoroughness can be a double-edged sword: On the brevity side of the issue, everything you and others have complained about in the past are entirely valid, and I do not disagree. On the other side, of course, are those that prefer more thorough analyses of any given subject and who will invariably accuse those who embrace brevity (for many good reasons, as you mention) of being “vague” and failing to do justice to the complexity of the topic, which then basically behooves me into a response pointing out that that the subject is too lengthy to cover in-depth in this venue, and that I wasn’t trying to avoid or neglect certain important points because I fear that, if addressed, they might have served to weaken or “refute” the crux of the point I was making.
In other words, it’s truly impossible to please everybody and to make posts in line with everybody’s preferences. Throughout my lengthy posting career I have attempted to come up with ways of compromising for both sets of preferences, but I understand that brevity is a requirement for many technical reasons. That said, I would like to point this one thing out in regards to some posts that may be a bit lengthy, if I may: Nobody should feel required to read a single essay, post, etc., in a single sitting. Just as they understand that books of length, either fiction or non-fiction, are divided into chapters that enable them to be readily consumed over a few, if not two or several, separate sittings. I try dividing my “official” essays into different sections to accommodate this natural tendency in publication and to offset the perceived psychological “requirement” by many readers to consume the entirety of a discourse not so neatly divided in a single sitting. I understand that type of format is not really suited to typical posts on a discussion forum, so I often hope that the cut and pasted excerpts I respond to can be perceived as the equivalent of “dividing lines” between one point made to the person I’m responding to, and another.
Clearly, of course, this is not suited to your personal preferences and technical needs as the sole moderator of this blog, so again I resolve to try working harder at achieving brevity of response.

Dissident

And thank you, Tom, for listening to me, even during times we may not agree on something. It’s much appreciated, my friend!

Methanic

“stretched to the width of a strand of spaghetti”
That is why it is called WordPress!
Although most presses that i know of are oriented in the horizontal plane.

voteforsanders2016
Sapphocidaire

And yet it’s also MISLEADING, as the boy with the black hair did NOT say he was pro-contact. He was defending the rights of boychatters to speak with each other, on the grounds of free speech. He still thought paedophila was a pathology. God, the music was so OBNOXIOUS!; like a trendy pro-LGBT Obama video. LGBT P? Really? My hand would wither before I could even shake that of an LGBTer.’s .
If ever P’s join up with LGBTers, I promise here today I shall cut my own throat with a razor blade in protest.
Oh, and I hope they asked the boy’s permission to be included in the video.
Nil pois, I’m afraid.

Dissident

And yet it’s also MISLEADING, as the boy with the black hair did NOT say he was pro-contact. He was defending the rights of boychatters to speak with each other, on the grounds of free speech. He still thought paedophila was a pathology.
Believe me, I fully understand your being irate at hearing pedophilia described or implied as a pathology even by many of those who sympathize with the kind community, Sapphocidaire. I feel much the same.
I try to look at it this way, however: Just as social and legal progress for all oppressed minorities occurs in steps, so too does the psychological awakening of those outside these minority groups who come to support them. Reaching the point where they understand that the MAP attraction bases do not affect our individual moral character (i.e., we aren’t inherently evil); that we do not choose our attractions; and actually making political parallels between us and other minority groups who have already climbed high up the progress ladder in the West and North (even while acknowledging that vanilla homosexuality and adult attraction to underage youths is not the same thing) is a major step forward in their psychological and emotional evolution… even though they clearly have more steps to go before reaching full enlightenment on the subject.
Let us also consider all the political pressure that members of the mainstream LGBT community are put under to be savagely hostile to pedophilia and hebephilia; to deny having once accepted BLer’s in their community during the early days of their progress; and to constantly emphasize the differences between homosexuality and pedophilia or hebephilia while simultaneously insisting that there are absolutely NO socio-political parallels between the two. So many LGBT youths in particular are conditioned to adopt the politically expedient hostility towards MAPs adopted by their forebears in force during the 1990s.
Yet the fact that a good number of them are increasingly pushing for and reaching the next step in their thinking, even if not all of them have yet reached the top rung of the progress ladder to accept our attractions as fully legitimate as their own, is impressively heretical and utterly admirable considering the past 35 years of the anti-pedo hysteria and the incessant pressure upon them to mentally conform their thinking to it over that time.
Take, for instance, this video from a gay youth activist openly displaying sympathy for pedophiles on his YouTube channel, partly based upon an incident involving someone in his personal life whom he respects that he alludes to but goes into no detail about:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ENzSxeXSh0Q
Granted he does mention that pedos should seek “rehabilitation” and seek to control their feelings, and that is terribly frustrating to anyone on the pro-choice side of the issue. He clearly hasn’t become definitively pro-choice, at least not at this point in his intellectual and political development. However, this video shows that he is at least thinking outside the accepted box based on some personal experience, and at the same time, psychologically and emotionally evolving, both as a person and as an activist.
He sees the parallels between his community and ours against all the pressure to ignore or deny it, and he shows sympathy and empathy for us based partly upon the much more marginal difficulties he has faced as a vanilla gay youth in America during the early 21st century. He feels that the rampant hatred and dehumanization of MAPs is morally wrong and counter-productive to both us and children. He further cringes at the thought of what it would be like for him if he, like us, had to avoid being physically intimate with anyone whom he actually found sexually attractive throughout his life. He finds much to admire about us as a result of what we have to deal with which he and his fellow LGBTers do not.
That video PSA took balls on his part, and even though I will agree with you that he needs to further evolve in his thinking about the issue, I’m very proud of him and his video gives much hope for future solidarity between us and the mainstream LGBT community. It further displays how wrong it is for us to hate and reject the LGBT community, because they are just as capable of overcoming ignorance and hatred as they are of adopting these negative attitudes (I’m not saying that YOU hate them, but I’ve met my share of fellow MAPs who feel it’s justified to return their prejudice in kind).
God, the music was so OBNOXIOUS!
That’s okay, since I like a lot of obnoxious music anyway 😀 You should see all the Green Day on my iPod’s player’s playlist!

Front Row

Do you or Tom think it is ok for professionals or the wider community to coerce someone into ‘seeking help’, or to contrive grounds for contact with agencies or services?

Front Row

I certainly do not think anyone should, either through obstruction coercion fabrication or any other delightful means.. overtly or covertly. Especially if the individual has committed no criminal offence and has no sexual attraction to children. It just becomes a human rights abuse otherwise. What does sea kelp imply anyway? Sorry, seek help.
I have every sympathy with those who struggle with their attraction or affliction, a few may even require specialist support. But in reality in many parts of the world this simply means chained to supervision and monitoring, perhaps some tablets thrown in – lots of confessional and disclosure about everything that is really no ones else’s business, lots of recording of information. A great big fat file. Now that is a hard deal for those never convicted of any crime, and who feel they present no risk of offending. It is therefore totally unacceptable to impose this upon someone who has no sexual attraction to children, but who may simply have the audacity to question the cultural consensus and abide by their own (lawful) aesthetic paradigms. Unacceptable, and should be opposed through every legal recourse possible.

Dissident

Under most circumstances, no I do not, Front Row. Only in highly extreme circumstances if the person in question should demonstrably prove a danger to themselves or others, and this would be indicative of problems that had no intrinsic relation to their attraction base in and of itself, but was due to a severe mental breakdown as a result of rampant social and institutionalized stigma.
I do not recommend that any MAP seek out therapy for the purpose of “curing” themselves, because I do not feel the evidence in any way suggests that pedophilia or hebephilia are a form of mental illness; thus, any such attempt would be doomed to failure and quite possibly the infliction of emotional harm upon themselves. I do support therapy for those who simply want to seek help dealing with all of the social stigma related to being a MAP in the present era, and if necessary, to help manage their attractions within the letter of the law. I disagree with the laws, but I still believe that while they remain heavily enforced, it’s too risky on many levels for both the hypothetical older and younger partners to risk engaging in this type of illegal activity. I thus support the work that B4U-ACT is now doing, and appreciate their lack of an official position of any sort on the contact issue, as well as their stated efforts to reform the mental health profession so as to establish a number of knowledgeable, compassionate, and non-judgmental therapists for the benefit of MAPs in need.
I believe VirPed has the potential to do good as well, though I do not support their overt anti-contact stance.

Front Row

I can’t share the view Tom O’Carroll and yourself hold to on some things but do agree that young people should be better informed and have more say over their own bodies. So I think there is scope for, and a right to, open civilised and non-threatening dialogue on these things. It’s a Human Rights matter.
On the other hand I question the authenticity of the Virtuous Paedophiles project and do not embrace it. It seems to me a potentially convenient experimental pathway into the therapeutic state. Self-disclosing, data-gathering, life-managing, socially-controlling, liberty-restricting. A bad idea.
You’re right about danger to self and others; That is the normal acceptable standard. You’re also right to say that a paraphilia (such as paedophilia) is a very tenuous and unsatisfactory route into the medical system, especially if the presence of the ‘condition’ cannot be established in accordance with the diagnostic criteria set out in DSM.
Therefore, another more conventional diagnostic route may be attempted, like setting someone up to appear delusional or paranoid. Covertly hacking their computer and breaking into the home, leaving no evidence of forced entry – just a calling card on yet another article of clothing, etc. Apparently known as gaslighting, after a 1940’s movie of the same name.

leonard sisyphus mann

Just watched the Panorama documentary – which I found very interesting.
The ‘Mark’ section (starting 17:00) is a bit odd, though.
Mark (a former resident of the Grafton Close children’s home, whom Chris Fay falsely alleged to have been taken to Elm Guest House for abuse), claims the worst he experienced at the Children’s home was being ‘groomed’ – the only description of which he gives is ‘being seen as being […] favourites’.
He clearly wasn’t ‘abused’ (though the program makers have chosen not to make this inference explicit). But then he goes on to talk about himself as a ‘victim’ (19:35). Nor does he mention anything about other boys being abused (we can be sure the program makers would have asked him about that and included it in the program if he’d had something to volunteer).
So if we boil all that down we get: Mark was at the Grafton Close Children’s home, he wasn’t abused nor was aware of other boys being abused, but he was treated especially nicely by those who ran the home. Because of this he feels he is a ‘victim’.
Another question is how ‘Nick’, a child when the alleged abuse happened, would have been so familiar with the political status of those who were abusing him – at what age does a normal child start to be able to recognise, the members of the cabinet or ‘just an mp’?
It strikes me just to what extent the nature and doings of these supposed paedophiles are a reification of Society’s stereotypical (and entirely erroneous) idea of ‘the Paedophile’ – someone whose interest in children derives from a wish to exercise power over someone vulnerable and weak.
This is a little like the way supposed sightings of aliens are made unconvincing because they so often just seem to reproduce whatever the current conception of aliens is in film and popular culture. If Nick et al had been telling stories of MPs etc behaving tenderly and indulgently towards the children his stories would have been more credible.
As you say, Tom, hopefully this will mark the passing of the darkest hour, but somehow I doubt it. As Dissident points out in his comment, I think that these flare-ups of hysteria and paranoia are merely symptoms of some deeper problem.

feinmann0

“A resurgence of similar alarmism in as yet unexpected guises can safely be predicted until such time as there is a deep underlying shift in the economic and social conditions that are driving them.” Quite so, but in the absence of a sufficiently severe deterrent or penalty (what is it, £80 for wasting police time, but often resulting in a staggeringly greater cost to the taxpayer?) to make people think twice about making false claims, then the liars can continue to indulge in their sadistic past-times.

A.

Just wanted to say I’ve always admired that particular photo (your avatar pic).

feinmann0

Phew! Beads of perspiration broke out on my forehead, until that is, I saw what you wrote within the brackets A 😀
Yes, a snap taken by the wonderful Wilhelm von Gloeden no less, in a very different age, and where the whole town – Taormina in Sicily – seemed perfectly at ease allowing their young sons to be photographed nude by the charismatic German aristocrat over many, many years. As a result of his art, Taormina became a magnet for many very famous people seeking to glimpse classical young male beauty in the flesh so to speak, the very same beauty von Gloeden had managed to capture with his camera.
And, following the judgement ordering the destruction of Graham Ovenden’s works of art, can we now expect the destruction of von Gloeden’s child pornography? Isn’t it ironic that Wilhelm’s art was previously judged to be obscene pornography by the fascist dictator, Mussolini (egged on by The Vatican), who ordered it’s total destruction in the mid-1930s. Are those very same fine photographic plates that survived Mussolini’s madness, to be at risk yet again from another bunch of fascist thugs seventy years on?
Sorry to stray off topic Tom …

A.

Sorry to alarm!
Though Wikipedia says von Gloeden had a fourteen-year-old boyfriend, I’m told that many of his photos are of young adult men and I’ve seen him claimed by gays as one of their own, so I imagine that if his work were threatened, many cultured gay men would object…but would they only save the photos of young men, and consign the rest to destruction?
I also hear he shared his profits with his models. Good for him!

Dissident

Another fantastic commentary, Tom! As I have noted in the past, I think the reason such outrageous and illogical claims are taken as gospel by a seemingly naive-in-the-extreme and non-discerning public, with few asking any questions regarding these often logistically improbable claims, is a simple one at heart. The current protectionist attitude towards children and anyone else who is considered legally “underage” has such powerful emotional resonance in Western societal fabric that many, many people have an actual psychological need to believe these allegations are true.
Why? Because it gives them the license and opportunity to play the role of Savior, enabling them to rationalize and justify the rampant and outright hysterical protectionist based trend to keep a metaphorical chain around the necks of underagers under their control. “Control” is the key word here, because it encourages the dark side of their powerful love for their children, giving them a rationale to increase control and surveillance over kids in general, and justify it to themselves and the public as a form of “responsible” parenting or attitude in general.
And as we all know, it readily diverts scrutiny from the place where the most frequent degree of actual abuse of every sort against minors goes on – in the home itself – and the very mindset which promotes it – a need and desire for extreme control, which does no favors for the moral compass of any human being. Power over others, at least at such an extreme level, is a corrupting, psychological pathogen for human morality and behavior. As such, they have a powerful invested need to externalize the threat into a bogeyman who operates outside the “safe” confines of the home, and currently presents those adults with a naturally occurring preferential or significant attraction for younger people as the “real” psychological pathogen, despite the fact that we as individuals usually lack both the actual power, and desire for the type of power, that creates the conditions of abusive behavior in the first place.
Yet I think it’s a form of truly twisted irony that authority figures in British government are being called into question for such corrupt behavior, when parents and adult legal guardians – who enjoy similar power over the younger people in their custody – are almost always given a free pass. Why? Because the conception of The Family – i.e., the nuclear family unit – and its hierarchical structure is considered as sacrosanct in our culture as the paradigm of the Innocent Child. Parents are socially anointed with the position of the Protector paradigm, which functions on the myth that love (which most parents undoubtedly have for their children) is somehow immune to the corrupting influence of power. So the bogeyman danger is externalized to other authority figures who do not operate within the home.
This provides opportunistic social workers, police officers, and journalists to play the role of Savior, which is the metaphorical cousin to the Protector paradigm that parents enjoy. To do this, they need to find and ensure the continued existence and political exploitation of Victims to “rescue” and Bogeymen to “sniff out” and combat, thus acquiring power and positive recognition for themselves.
But why do they continue to be accepted even after they are invariably exposed for the self-serving, publicity-mongering hucksters that they are? Because, I think, the emotional nature of this subject grants them brownie points for their stated intentions and the “spirit” of what they do even if their motives are exposed as bad. As noted above, even chronic liars and charlatans can be shown degrees of forgiveness if the cause they are self-servingly pursuing benefits the emotional sensibilities of the public, and helps to preserve the protectionist status quo for all concerned. And part of this attitude is the unfortunate belief that it’s permissible for any number of innocent people to be destroyed if doing so “saves even one kid” or brings “societal awareness of the problem” (that is, until they or someone they love is unjustly accused, of course).
Not only that, but people on the Left have a perceived need to prove that their penchant for open-mindedness doesn’t extend to anything to do with pedophilia or hebephilia. Hence, they feel it’s politically important to be “tough” (read: unreasonable and hostile) to this subject. The alternative is to be accused of being “soft on child abuse” or to have the entire progressive movement called into question for being “against” the paradigms our society is supposed to hold most dear. So they fall back on the aforementioned rationalizations to sacrifice truth and innocent people for perceived “greater good” benefits.
Finally, as for whether or not we have more such nonsense to replace each one that becomes discredited, you said it best here in your second to last paragraph, Tom: “A resurgence of similar alarmism in as yet unexpected guises can safely be predicted until such time as there is a deep underlying shift in the economic and social conditions that are driving them.” In other words, as long as the perceived societal and political need for such bogeymen and panics continues due to the economic and social conditions you mentioned, so too will more manifestations of the bogeyman “pedophile” continue to appear and receive near-universal acceptance from the public. In fact, the current “sex trafficking” paranoia, an updated version of the white slavery scare of the early 20th century, is another contemporary manifestation to fuel the overall paranoia; sadly, it’s something that even a number of MAPs who seek to play the Savior role are getting caught up in.

Tank

Dissident, I’m tertiary educated, I have contributed to books and magazines but I would LOVE to have been the author of your article! It is so clear, well-argued, knowledgeable of the relevant facts and lacking in the hubris of the police, the politicians and most of the press. Have you ever submitted anything like this to the press? Guardian, Independent, New Statesman, Spectator? Please consider this. If you do, sympathetic ears might be 1.Jon Henley see his article in the Guardian 3/1/13. 2.Sean O’Neill of The Times See his article 6/12/14.
3. Decca Aikenhead in Guardian Weekend 19/.1/13 and amazingly Revd Dr. Thaddeus Birchard in a long article in Church Times 10/02/12.
I realise you probably know a lot more articles like this and I’m being a bit presumptuous.
I’m really saying I really identify with and agree with everything you say.
Thanks.

Dissident

Thank you so much for your kind and supportive words, Tank! They meant a lot, and I’m pleased that my post was helpful to you, as long-winded as I tend to get at times 🙂 I’m certain your writing is at least as good, as I am surpassed by many of the brilliant people who contribute to this very blog, including Tom himself.
To be honest, I haven’t much considered sending articles to the various left-wing and progressive zines out there lately, since they very often seem, at best, ambiguous about this topic, and all of them – including The Guardian and even a recent issue of CounterPunch – will publish at least as many hysterical and off-base articles about this subject as they will the refreshingly open-minded and reasonable ones you pointed out.
This dichotomous form of approach to the subject in these progressive zines suggests to me that, in a general sense, the true Left (not counting the “centrist” fakes) simply has no idea how to deal with this subject in a thoughtful manner, are “all over the place” with their feelings on the topic, and are caught between the proverbial rock and a hard place with approaching this subject in anything more than at least a heavily guarded and mildly condemnatory manner (at least!). Many doubtless believe as ignorantly as the worst hysteria-mongers on the Right, whereas others are pinned in “on the fence” mode, whereas others still are curious about where the truth really lies but are terrified of the consequences of openly seeking and reporting these truths. The Anna Racoon’s, Debbie Nathan’s, and Sean O’Neill’s of this contemporary world are a rare breed these days, i.e., caring more about the truth and personal integrity than they do with having a popular mainstream career which includes full acceptance by the status quo.
I was actually not aware of those particular articles you mentioned, so you know quite a bit more than you gave yourself credit for 🙂 I will certainly look them up, and most definitely consider what you said in your encouraging words. Thank you again for this support and I look forward to seeing your future posts here and elsewhere in the community!

gantier99
Dissident

Thank you for providing this convenient set of links to the articles mentioned by Tank, Gantier 🙂 After reading the first one, I realized I had seen it before, but they are all quite important, and I was glad that Tank reminded me of it so I could revisit it.

gantier99

https://tomocarroll.wordpress.com/2013/01/17/three-reasons-to-be-cheerful/
I realised too that I’d read about that Jon Henley article before, and it must have been here, where else! 🙂

Front Row

Tom, Dissident – you may already have seen this article about the destruction of works by Graham Ovenden and Pierre Louys.
http://blogs.new.spectator.co.uk/2015/10/graham-ovendens-art-is-controversial-but-its-destruction-is-a-scandal/

Front Row

Thanks Tom for the offer to contribute to your site.

A.

Yes, thank you!

A.

I mean, thanks for bringing that blog to our attention.

Dissident

I haven’t yet seen this in detail, but I’m going to check it out. Thank you for bringing it to our attention, Front Row 🙂

A.

A fine, passionate piece, nice to read.
Elton John, whose partner is fifteen years younger than him, apparently has a fine collection of paintings by Henry Scott Tuke. Tuke specialised in painting two things: sailing ships and naked adolescent boys. No prizes for guessing which aspect of Tuke’s work interests Elton John! I imagine he would be a little irked if someone came after his valuable collection (not that anyone would, realistically).

Sapphocidaire

What are you implying? He’s a faggot, isn’t he? So why would he have any interest in boys? Gays like men! Not boys! So, what’s your point?

A.

Well, it seems there is quite a lot of overlap. Many people like men and boys both, particularly if by boys we mean adolescents. Only the other day I heard a gay man casually say that he likes males 16-40. That must be exceedingly common.

Christian

One more article on the ordered destruction of the Pierre Louÿs collection, acquired in an auction decades ago, and prints from the photographer Wilhelm von Plüschow: https://www.pigtailsinpaint.com/2015/10/burning-convictions/
The UK follows the steps of the Roman Inquisition, the Nazis and the Islamic State.

leonard sisyphus mann

>”The current protectionist attitude towards children and anyone else who is considered legally “underage” has such powerful emotional resonance in Western societal fabric that many, many people have an actual psychological need to believe these allegations are true.”
I was amazed at how a very large proportion of the negative responses to Todd Nickerson’s recent articles in Salon, and his interview on Irish radio, consisted of people highly resistant to the idea that a paedophile might not wish to ‘offend’, and might find ‘not offending’ easy.
People were saying to him things like:
‘how do you know you will never offend?’
‘no-one can stay celibate for ever!’
and his host saying something like:
‘if the right woman came along I could imagine myself being seduced into being unfaithful to my wife. So how do you know that if you were sufficiently tempted you could resist offending?’
(the unspoken assumption behind this second scenario could be one of either ‘if you came across a child who is sufficiently powerless and unable to make a complaint’ or, if one makes a parrallel scenario to the one outlined in the first half of the question, ‘if you meet a child sufficiently seductive’!)
Anyway, what should have been good news to those beset with paedo-hysteria – that paedophiles are eminently capable of not offending – seemed to disturb them instead: after all, if what Nickerson was saying were true that would mean paedophiles could be anywhere, be near to children, looking at them, working with them, and there would be no way of finding them out – those cunning paedos – escaping detection and retribution by not offending!
Which seems to suggest that maybe it’s not the actual ‘offending’ that’s the problem, but either our simple existence, or the thoughts people imagine exist in our heads, regardless of whether we act on them or not.
This would tie in well with those prosecutions that have happened for Child Pornography offenses – where the images were cartoons, or images pieced together from legal sources, or where the images were collections of legitimate images of children taken from legitimate sources but where there was a suspicion that they were being used for masturbation (there’s recently been a bit of fuss about paedophiles collecting images of kids from Facebook posts). A photo of a kid in underwear is ok when it’s in a catalogue, if the same image is on a paedo’s hard-drive it becomes ‘pornography’.
Which suggests that the real crime of paedophiles isn’t so much acting on their desires, but having those desires: ‘thought crime’.
As to why all this is happening – why there are these recurrent bouts of child-centered hysteria?
I think these bouts are just symptoms of a deeper disease – a crisis in the way society has constructed the idea of childhood.
Maybe the paedophile has become, for society, a stand-in for ‘child sexuality’ – after all there can be no manifestation of child sexuality nowadays without the idea and threat of paedophilia being evoked alongside. The public idea of the ‘paedophile’ depends on an idea of the child as vulnerable, passive and innocent – so the paedophile may be the mirror image of the Medusa (that is child-sexuality) which society is now unable to look at directly.
But, of course, child sexuality is ever-present, as ineradicable as breathing – and has even become an economic tool in creating the ideal consumer child. What a mess!
Society, as it must, resists the possibility of openly hating and fearing its own children, and so the paedophile becomes a proxy upon which society can load all its disturbed, confused and terrified feelings about its own children. It’s no coincidence that the hatred of paedophiles is strongest in those societies who least like their children.

leonard sisyphus mann

>”But even allowing for all this, I am not sure how many people could honestly say they would resist temptation if it presented itself unambiguously enough in a relatively risk-free situation.”
Yes, I know what you mean. As Jesus could have said: “the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak – especially when it’s hard”.
I guess the difference between you (or I) I saying that ‘resistance is futile’ and an anti saying it, is that we’re probably envisaging two very different situations:
The antis envision a man wheedling his way into a position of responsibility for a child, in order to use his physical strength, power and authority to coerce and trick the confused, reluctant, vulnerable small child into intercourse, and then afterwards, with threats, forcing the child to keep what happened secret.
But what paedos really dream about is some delightful, sensual, frisky little girl or boy who knows you and likes you well and whom you love, who insists on crawling into bed with you, taking off their pajamas and playing tickle-monster and maybe gets a bit carried away…
The first scenario is more akin to a nightmare for me – the second would be more of a struggle to resist.
I also guess that the Virtuous Pedophiles who, like the fakirs who live with corpses so as to never lose sight of their mortality, force themselves to constantly think on the ‘loathsomeness’ of their desire, might be better able to resist a child who shows signs of wanting to engage in some form of sensual intimacy.
But I guess that like all else in sociology – it’s not a matter of absolutes. Not all paedophiles will eventually break the law, nor is it that paedophiles never break the law. But I think the balance is nevertheless much much further towards the ‘resisting temptation’ end of the scale than the antis imagine or feel comfortable with.

Sapphocidaire

“like the fakirs who live with corpses”
Language! There could be children reading this.
LOL!

Dissident

Tom, I thank both you and Leonard for what you guys added to the thread I started (well, Leonard in response to me; you in subsequent response to him), and I do have some responses to your responses.
Leonard: I was amazed at how a very large proportion of the negative responses to Todd Nickerson’s recent articles in Salon, and his interview on Irish radio, consisted of people highly resistant to the idea that a paedophile might not wish to ‘offend’, and might find ‘not offending’ easy.”
Part of the problem with the Virped ideology, including with Todd, is their insistence that an anti-choice ideology will win scores of brownie points with the public when taking the route of engaging conventional/mainstream media sources, and that this will make them triumph over MAPs/kind who hold a pro-choice ideology in terms of winning public sentiment. They also firmly believe that their prohibition-oriented ideology regarding contact will make them come off as less likely to offend in the public eye.
As I have argued with Todd and the rest of them numerous times, that is not the case, and I believe that the manner in which Todd has been reaching out and summarily treated like dirt by these mainstream media outlets since joining Virped is proof of this. There is a way to win public hearts and minds, and my experience and observations alike tells me it doesn’t hinge on your ideology alone, and it’s not at this point in time to be found by engaging with mainstream, heavily-controlled media outlets who find our very feelings unacceptable (as Leonard pointed out), and enjoy treating us as their favorite whipping boy.
[quote from commentator to Todd’s interview]: “if the right woman came along I could imagine myself being seduced into being unfaithful to my wife. So how do you know that if you were sufficiently tempted you could resist offending?”
Tom: I must confess that although I lead a life these days as sinless as a saint in my old age, I share the scepticism expressed by those Salon readers and do not find it in the least surprising. Yes, there are non-offenders but I doubt there are many who find it easy, especially among those whose paedophilia is exclusive.
One of the many arguments I’ve heard from anti-choice MAPs through the years that they use to try and deride pro-choicers is that the sexual component of the MAP attraction base is so trivial compared to the emotional, social, and aesthetic components that they cannot understand how any “decent” MAP cannot easily resist and deny that part of themselves. Further, they will brag about how much more “pure” love for children is when the sexual component is treated like the banal, unnecessary, and corrupting thing that it supposedly is. They routinely argue or imply that pro-choicers fighting for full rights for themselves and youths to express the sexual side of mutually desired feelings if desired in a reciprocal manner must mean that sexual activity is the only thing we could possibly want out of that relationship.
Yet the human race in general is well aware – as huge fragments of worldwide literature, music, art, and the more recent but plentiful psychology tomes will attest – that sexual desire is a major component of our species’ feelings (excepting those who are naturally asexual, of course). It’s anything but a trivial or banal aspect of our collective and individual being (in most cases), and the only time it generally becomes viewed as such is in the midst of moralizing attitudes like any variant of the anti-choice belief system. In other words, it’s utter nonsense to claim that our sexual feelings are relatively easy to sublimate as long as you “put love first,” yadda, yadda, and yadda.
Now by the same token, that doesn’t mean it’s near-impossible to put a leash on. Speaking for myself and many other MAPs I have known, good self-control when it comes to our natural human sexual feelings can be accomplished when it comes to absolute necessity, as is the case with those of the kind persuasion due to the current laws and concerns for iatrogenic & sociogenic harm being inflicted upon our hypothetical love interests if our illegal relationship was “found out.”
Speaking for myself, I have always exhibited good self-control, but I fully admit that I make a concerted point to keep myself out of situations where the temptation may arise. Specifically, I do not attempt to create platonic friendships or mentor-type relationships with young adolescent girls, and I limit any time spent with girls to those who are relatives and daughters or nieces of close friends whom I have always had nothing but entirely platonic feelings (i.e., non-romantic forms of love) towards.
Being human, and understanding how important the sexual component is to our species in general (again, accepting those who are naturally asexual), and understanding that being intimate on all levels with an awesome young adolescent girl is a natural yearning of mine… well, of course I fear what may possibly happen, however unlikely, if I met such a girl that I happened to share a mutual romantic attraction with, and we were in some type of social or professional situation were we routinely had to spend much time alone together. This is what hebephiles like myself naturally want, so obviously the temptation would be there, and I have no idea how strong it may be in such a hypothetical situation.
This is also why I regularly seek to form fulfilling romantic relationships with much younger women of legal age. These latter women, as awesome as they so often are, do not replace pubescent/young adolescent girls in my heart and yearning, but they nevertheless tend to retain enough of their physical, emotional, and social traits that I can find them reasonably attractive on all levels and thus have a mutually fulfilling romantic relationship with them. This is another thing that works for me, though I fully understand it wouldn’t be an option for other MAPs.
I’m not saying that all MAPs of any ideology should feel the requirement to keep their illegal-to-act-upon attractions at bay in precisely the same manner, but I do not recommend otherwise. I’m simply saying that despite always having good self-control, I certainly do agree with your concern and the concerns of those commentators, Tom. Hence, I act accordingly. It’s NOT easy to put our natural attractions aside, and this component of our complex array of feelings is not trivial or prurient no matter how naturally loving a person you may be, and MAPs are typically as loving as any Non-MAP.
Leonard: I guess the difference between you (or I) I saying that ‘resistance is futile’ and an anti saying it, is that we’re probably envisaging two very different situations:
[snip]
Leonard’s examples as to how differently typical MAPs/kinds and antis – or even uninformed Nons who are not particularly anti – tend to envisage the type of scenarios where we would hypothetically fulfill the sexual component of our desires is spot on, and reveals the proverbial rub.
The anti mindset believes that no matter the feelings and actual intentions of the MAP in question, if we acted on our feelings even in a mutually desired fashion, it would very likely result in devastating mental damage to our hypothetical younger partner. There is no scientific evidence to suggest this, but the belief and accompanying assumption is extremely powerful in the collective cultural psyche. Youths under X years of age are believed to be extremely emotionally fragile, with sexual activity being their equivalent of kryptonite. This metaphorical kryptonite becomes even more intense, according to the belief system, if the activity occurs with an adult due to the way our cultural and legal hierarchy between the age groups are set up.
This is why so many people continue to believe at the present time that our feelings present a great and constant potential danger of Brobdingnagian magnitude to children and adolescents in our midst.
Leonard: I also guess that the Virtuous Pedophiles who, like the fakirs who live with corpses so as to never lose sight of their mortality, force themselves to constantly think on the ‘loathsomeness’ of their desire, might be better able to resist a child who shows signs of wanting to engage in some form of sensual intimacy.
IMO, simply focusing upon the likely legal and iatrogenic/sociogenic consequences (the latter for the hypothetical younger partner), and how upset anyone who has faith in you will become if you cross that particular legal line, can be every bit as sufficient as hating that part of yourself. And a lot less torturous and counter-productive to your emotional well-being.
Leonard: But I guess that like all else in sociology – it’s not a matter of absolutes. Not all paedophiles will eventually break the law, nor is it that paedophiles never break the law. But I think the balance is nevertheless much much further towards the ‘resisting temptation’ end of the scale than the antis imagine or feel comfortable with.
Bingo. I think Leonard hit the nail on the head yet again; resistance to our natural feelings is fully manageable, though certainly not easy by any means because we are as human as any Non-MAP. Thank you to both of you for your added insights!

ethane72

I cry “filibuster”! Seriously, though, it would be a lot more conducive to conversation if you broke a mammoth reply like that down into pieces so you could get a discussion about each.
A few brief comments: There was a lot of positive reaction to Todd’s articles as well as the predictable loud hate messages. We will never win over bigots, but our situation could improve dramatically if even a minority of fair-minded people decide they have to stick up for us (if we’re law-abiding). And our sympathizers are not going to shout their support with glee — it is bound to be a depressing subject for most people.
You present people like Todd as having made a strategic decision about how to present themselves. I think it’s more a matter of us all giving our genuine beliefs, and the media will allow voices through that meet certain criteria — one being that we don’t want to legalize sex with kids.
A precondition for society even entertaining the idea that sex with prepubescents might be OK is believing that we can control our desires.
If it’s true that anti-contact pedophiles are better able to resist temptation (and I can’t swear that’s true) it could well be because we truly believe in more and greater potential harm to a girl (or boy) and with more reasons to deter us and those reasons strongly felt, we’re more likely to remain deterred.

ethane72

You have a point. I try to be careful of using “pro-contact” with the public and hope I clarify it when I use it. It is mostly a term I use when talking with other pedophiles. My best candidate for a term for public use now is “pro-legalization”. l dislike “pro-choice” since I take its point to be obvious. Even the whole “grooming” narrative assumes that the goal is to create a willing child. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard even a foaming-at-the-mouth detractor claim that any pedophiles want to change laws so we can tackle and rape kids at will. If your point is that you think many kids might freely elect that choice if offered to them, you’ve got a big, separate battle to fight and “choice” in your term isn’t going to bring that to mind.

A.

“Youths under X age are believed to be extremely emotionally fragile, with sexual activity being the equivalent of kryptonite.” I like the way you put that.
This supposed emotional fragility is blithely ignored when it suits people to ignore it. A while ago I got quite angry watching some Internet footage of a TV programme about several children who were in long-term foster care. The way the programme treated the oldest child, aged ten, seemed downright exploitative. His social worker read out on camera the ways in which his birth mother, who has learning difficulties (= intellectual disability), had neglected him. He was filmed crying. He was filmed during a brief reunion with his birth mother. And all this went out on television. Presumably whoever had parental responsibility for the children had the final say in whether or not they appeared in the programme, but someone must have spoken to the children about it beforehand and asked for their agreement. So it seems that children as young as six (the age of the youngest child) are allowed to agree to having their private lives and their most emotional moments broadcast nationally, but not allowed to agree to masturbate with a grown-up friend and pose naked for some snaps, because clearly the potential harm is so very much worse in the second case!

Dissident

As long as the situation has nothing whatever to do with sexuality, adults will be quick to rationalize subjecting children and younger adolescents to all sorts of activities that are emotionally trying and demonstrably negative in consequence. This includes subjecting them to the frequent humiliation and constant pressures they endure in a totalitarian mandatory schooling system that puts them in brutal competition with each other, and where they must jump through numerous hoops for a system based on standardized tests, a highly judgmental grading system, and a one-size-fits-all teaching methodology. I still have nightmares about how all of this affected me, yet I was considered to have a “problem” for having so much trouble dealing with it, just as so many millions of other kids do.
Yet kids are adamantly considered too emotionally fragile to “endure” mutually desired sexual activity that is pleasurable and which can be life-affirming under the proper circumstances and in a situation where mutual trust and respect are present. This strongly gives me the impression that the entire “protect kids from sexual activity” hysteria is based far more on moralism than it is on some sort of noble ideologically-based concern to protect their supposedly fragile emotional beings. This is made quite clear when such “concerns” are enforced so selectively, and disproportionately towards any activity that involves sexual activity or knowledge acquirement.

Front Row

You write..
‘Part of the problem with the Virped ideology, including with Todd, is their insistence that an anti-choice ideology will win scores of brownie points with the public when taking the route of engaging conventional/mainstream media sources’
Does the whole subject need to be approached from an either/or yes/no mentality? Is this not precisely the problem, a kind of blinkered thinking which sets-up and traps everyone who dares to share an earnest insight concerning children; Always getting cornered by this crude inquisition about topics such as, the age of consent. Which just leads to heat and confrontation rather than insight and progress.
I see VP as a trap – whether a planted intentional trap (false flag) or a genuine but ill-judged venture. Because, it’s emphasis on affliction, guilt, and enfeeblement, is no more progressive than (with all due respect to Tom) the PIE advocacy for ridiculous own-goals such as an age of consent of four.
Why not move on from these self-defeating positions, and consider a more exploratory and loosely defined approach to subjects such as sensuality, consent, attraction, everything. One that is more about raising awareness of the capacity for fulfilment, and everyone’s right to that, regardless of age, race, or ability, in consort with mutual respect for each-others rights. Do as thou will, long as ye harm none.. and don’t break the law of course, but rather seek to influence the culture, which shapes the law for future generations.
I think this is the way forward to make a real impact in the debate and shaping a better more enlightened future.

Christian

The ethnologist Marvin Harris wrote in his 1973 book Cows, Pigs, Wars and Witches – The Riddles of Cultures:

Is it true that the Inquisition was devoted to the suppression of the witch heresy? The assumption that the main business of the witch hunters was the annihilation of witches rests on the professed lifestyle consciousness of the inquisitors. But the contrary assumption—namely, that the witch hunters went out of their way to increase the supply of witches and to spread the belief that witches were real, omnipresent, and dangerous—rests on very solid evidence. […] The situation demands that we ask not why the inquisitors were obsessed with destroying witchcraft, but rather why they were so obsessed with creating it. Regardless of what they or their victims may have intended, the inevitable effect of the inquisitorial system was to make witchcraft more believable, and hence to increase the number of witchcraft accusations.

He then explains that the witch hunt had three advantages for the ruling nobility and Church:
1. It diverted the resentment of the exploited towards witches instead of exploiters.
2. It showed the oppressors, the nobility and the Church, as the protectors of the people against evil monsters.
3. Through terror and by spreading mutual distrust, it atomized the population and prevented any collective solidarity among the oppressed.

A.

V. interesting. Will look for the book. Thanks.

Ethanic

Things like this have to be approached with a sense of humour, and, I must say, you have an excellent one, Tom.
LOL is not only a net acronym but a palpable aural reality.

71
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x
Scroll to Top