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Author Topic: What is wrong with the English Commonwealth?
Fenring
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I came across this article today, which is about India temporarily banning a large chunk of internet pornography (no, not the widely illegal kind such as pedo).

http://money.cnn.com/2015/08/03/technology/india-porn-websites-block/?sr=cnnifb

On its own India's decision would leave me puzzled, however it seems be be following what is starting to look like a trend in English Commonwealth nations of moving in a regressive direction in the sexual arena. I just read the other day about Australia having passed some draconian laws regulating the porn industry (including an outright ban on women in porn with small breasts!), and also recently the UK began cracking down on porn and blatantly outlawed the production of any pornography that...well, basically anything involving women's pleasure or BDSM fantasies. Here's a NSFW article with some details:

http://www.cosmopolitan.com/sex-love/news/a33796/the-uk-just-banned-a-lot-of-sex-acts/

What the heck is wrong with the commonwealth? Why are these countries suddenly banning certain kinds of porn in an age of supposed tolerance and understanding? From what I read elsewhere the high-ups in England are taking a 'moral stance' on the subject, rather than dealing with some particular problem that needed solving.

At first glance I can see that in a vaguely wartime era such as we live in conservative parties will be more likely to thrive and we'll see things that run in the usual conservative territory. But the Tories in England have been in power before - why this change now? And what's up with Australia and India?

Does anyone who agrees this looks like a pattern have a guess as to what's up? It would be worrisome enough it these laws were merely prudish and regressive, but they also appear to me to be largely sexist as well.

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DonaldD
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The British Board of Film Classification, the group that 'banned' the representation of certain acts in the UK, is an independent, non governmental organisation; it is possible, even likely, that the board has had discussions with members of the government, but it would be a mistake to suggest any of these decisions (by the BBFC) is related to government policy.

[ August 04, 2015, 05:43 AM: Message edited by: DonaldD ]

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Fenring
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You may be right, although I might suggest that if the MPAA tried to prevent certain kinds of film topics in the U.S. they might be sued and it would most likely be thrown out as unconstitutional. Depending on what type of content they tried to stop it might even be called hate speech, if what they were trying to stop involved protected groups. For instance if they tried to stop filming of gay sex I could envision them being destroyed and buried for it. So something about UK law or culture is allowing this to pass, and in addition to why anyone in the UK would try to do this in the first place, the culture is also what I'm addressing. What's going on over there?
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D.W.
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{tinfoilhat}
Ultraconservatives are being lead by / manipulated by agnostic/atheist social liberals. They push them, also providing fuel to incite this group, in order to make them more and more extreme and repressive. They see the rise of fundamentalist Islam as a golden opportunity to snuff out our own Christian morally intrusive population. By pushing the ultraconservatives within the Christian community further and further, the social liberals will be able to draw direct and undeniable comparison to “the enemy” fundamental Islam.

Will it take domestic terrorism to be “the last straw?” Hard to say. Either way the “polarization” is not a threat to social liberals. It’s the slow building self implosion of the religious right in our country. Every day you can see examples of them overreaching and doing ‘crazy things’ to ‘protect the country and our children / future’.
{/tinfoilhat}
I heard about that small breast ban awhile back when it was being proposed. As ridiculous as it sounds, they seemed to be under the impression they were fighting against filming of underage girls. I suppose they believed that even if the girls were of legal age, they were catering to an audience who wanted “young looking” actresses? It’s messed up, but not entirely arbitrary a ban. It’s the assault weapons ban of the porn industry. Address the cosmetic, ignore the substantive.

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Fenring
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D.W.: About your tinfoilhat theory I would suggest that if that kind of manipulation was deliberate then liberals would be cutting off their nose to spite their face. It's one thing to make another group hang themselves by sounding stupid, but if you push them to change law or culture then you've lost, not won. That being said my theory is that the sexual regression is somehow tied in with the same spirit that is leading to massive military hawkishness in the English speaking world. Honestly, if they thought they could get away with it I think conservatives would pass these kinds of porn restrictions in the U.S. too. The fact is they can't get away with it, which says something about U.S. law and/or culture. But the authoritarian view of sexuality seems to be veering towards puritanism just as it's veering towards military aggression and domestic suspicion. If I'm right that these issues are related then the forces behind the sexual/porn regression are actually dominant and on the rise, and are not merely a fringe group being manipulated by anyone.

Regarding the Australian thing, yeah I also read it was to combat the idea of underage-looking women. But that makes about as much sense as banning the shaving of public hair for the same reason. Bottom line it's sexist bigoted nonsense and any 'reasons' for it come across to me as little more than spurious. As if actresses needed even more reason to have breast enlargement [Roll Eyes] Even if it was 100% clear that some people want to see actresses who appear to be underage - well let them, it will just fill a niche and reduce the need for a black market to produce actually illegal material.

[ August 04, 2015, 11:22 AM: Message edited by: Fenring ]

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D.W.
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There ya go applying logic to moral outrage...

And it's a tinfoil hat theory for a reason. It's too dumb or implausible to be true but just plausible enough to be amusing. [Smile]

This is where not being a fan of Dr. Strangelove is a problem. I'm sure I'm missing a sweet opportunity for a perfectly timed precious bodily fluid military zealot joke... Oh well.

As to your theory that hawkishness and sexual purity are linked, I can sorta understand that. It's not complicated. When the world gets scary and tough decisions or sacrifice may be called for it's comfortable to divide the world up into good and bad.

I am a good guy, I don't do bad or dirty things. The bad guys do those things. Those on MY side, shouldn't do those things either. That's letting evil win.

Simplistic, and likely not productive, but not hard to understand.

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NobleHunter
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I suspect the common factor is that many Commonwealth countries don't have the same fetish for freedom of speech that the US does. Any guarantee of free speech in the UK is statutory, for example.

Regulating porn is probably seen as an easy way to appease certain voter blocs. Since these countries don't have the hardcore civil liberties groups and traditions, it's a lot harder to formulate opposition to these bans.

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D.W.
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Not to mention that even in "free" cultures, you don't get people loudly proclaiming themselves to be pro-porn. The only time I've seen freedom of speech directly and overtly linked to pornography was... well... at the opening of pornography.

Here we defend it in the, "Well you don't want them to censor something YOU care about next!" frame rather than the, "NO! DON'T TAKE MY PORN!" vein. [Razz]

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Fenring
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quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
There ya go applying logic to moral outrage...

And it's a tinfoil hat theory for a reason. It's too dumb or implausible to be true but just plausible enough to be amusing. [Smile]

This is where not being a fan of Dr. Strangelove is a problem. I'm sure I'm missing a sweet opportunity for a perfectly timed precious bodily fluid military zealot joke... Oh well.

Heh, ok, I wasn't sure if by {tinfoilhat} you meant that your comment would be interpreted that way, or that you meant it to be a little satirical.

Speaking of bodily fluids, I've been hearing lately that fluoride in water may, in fact, have no health benefits and might possibly even carry health risks. I obviously thought of Jack D. Ripper right away, and am now amused to think that he may have been partially correct [Smile]

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velcro
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quote:
Not to mention that even in "free" cultures, you don't get people loudly proclaiming themselves to be pro-porn.
Au contraire, mon frere.

The loud proclaiming starts about 1 minute in. Don't worry, nothing graphic, and no language worse than "slut".

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