Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Oh no not My Nigel, not my Dear Nigel

Oh no not my Nigel, how many times have I heard that cry from feminists who seem to believe the moment her partner started going out with her he lost all urges other than to support feminism and that having heard her opinion on Porn, Lad Mags and SEVs automatically despises said things. This was going to be another piece on Objectification but at the end of this I will link to a fabulous piece so instead I want all the Nigels out there to start thinking.

Now I have issue with this belief and I am sure that many of the guys/dancers will recognise the Not my Nigel in the audience at SEVs. They are usually the ones sitting at the front who when a performance is on stage cannot move his eyes and even walks backwards into the toilets to see as much as he can while he is there.

I had a colleague years ago who always had FHM or Loaded in his desk that he would read at lunch. He would never take the thing home as his wife would "kill him" for looking at other women. So "Nigel" keeps his interests away from home and was always handy to know who had the latest copy of  the mags.

There was a group of guys who came into London every year for a work conference that was for 3 days and their ritual was to always go out on the first night to a certain SEV. There was a core of 3 guys but they would sometimes bring others. The story was pretty much the same that they enjoyed the SEVs but their partners would never stand for it for the standard reasons feminist trot out. But yeah another case of not my nigels. And so it goes on, the guys from Custom and excise that had a regular night out. Those guys in Local Government that need to escape the confines of political power plays. Nigels will go out to play and just not bother to tell their partner because of the expected response

If you don't know SEVs you will never understand the variety of people that go from foreign diplomats to judges, from photographers to chauffeurs the variety is incredible and yet most will never admit that they enjoy a night out at a SEV. I remember when telling my parents, no issue from my Dad and my Mum took her time but accepted it. My girlfriend has no issue with it and I wont hide the fact the way I use to I was a Not my Nigel at the outset before I realised that I don't fear the facts and people take me as I am with all my interests.

Still though you see women claim not their partner based on an assumption and one that is based on belief. One rather interesting foreign gentleman admitted that at University he was "a feminist" simply because he was then in a group that was almost exclusively women so he was never without a date. And yes I met him while he was out on a shoreditch shuffle a few years back.

So to all those Not My Nigels out there, are you truly ashamed of the fact you love to see positive, sassy, intelligent women? Or will the divorce be too expensive?

To all the women who bleat Not My Nigel just remember Nigel is human and has desires and those can't just be turned off because of a theory that Nigel doesn't really believe in but nods his head to avoid arguments. And Nigels at some point even if you don't admit your likes it will not hurt to question some of the stranger theories that are thrown out there.

If you want a good piece on Objectification then here  by @Maggie_McNeill is well worth a read.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Legal but it Doesn't Make it Right

So there I was having a conversation yesterday and the discussions were on a wide set of subjects. Everything from Samurai Police (I have start reading the Sano Ichiro books by Laura Joh Rowland) to equality and feminism. And yes it was a lady I was speaking to who helps immensely with my health. Obviously not going to cover everything but a couple of things that were said have set me thinking which is always dangerous.

First thing that hit me was that whilst training as a nurse she was informed she was going to be more likely to see sexual assault on men, this by the police. I had never heard this before so came as a surprise especially as the radical feminists I have debated with always heavily play the SEVs cause men to sexually assault women. Obviously knowing how inaccurate the Lilith report is and the truth about Newquay you sort of realise that discussions with organisations like Object and UK Feminista are not actually discussions as that would involve both sides listening.

Now here is the bit that really struck home as we got on to the potential ban on lad mags. I pointed out that the radical feminists are using objectification as their primary argument, to which I was told it is surely the choice of the models. Thinking about it not only is that the most true statement that it is a choice but it also highlights that the only women being objectified are those that have made a choice to be. It is only those people that think that men are constantly objectifying every woman that see and do not think of women other than sex objects. And when you actually think about it that is one of the most stupid concepts ever. I have female members of my family of course I don't objectify them, I have female friends and I don't objectify them so even if I did find a woman attractive either from a magazine or a SEV that doesn't and cannot mean it carries over to every women or anything other than a few minutes.

The discussions really resonate around the freedom of choice and more that not only are radical feminists not speaking for the models they are also not speaking for a lot of women. It comes back to the whole issue about a vocal minority deciding what is right for every woman without having spoken to every woman to get their opinions. It just seems because they have a belief some radicals think every woman should not only believe the same but that actually already do. Women can identify with having feminist tendencies as can most men. I certainly want to see Britain as a meritocracy where everyone is judge on ability and not on who they are friends with or how they fit the requirements based on sex, colour or sexual preferences. We all should succeed or fail based on being the best. And that everyone should be able to choose their career based what they want so long as it is legal.

Of course you do get people pointing out that just because it is legal it doesn't make it right. I would agree especially on capping disability payments is legal but it doesn't make it right. Telling people what they are doing is immoral and wrong is legal but it doesn't make it right. Claiming to speak for all women when you obviously don't is legal but it doesn't make it right.

TonyN (

Edit: I was reading back one sentence and realised it made less sense than I normally do which is not a lot as it is. It is only those people that think that men are constantly objectifying every woman that see and do not think of women other than sex objects should read It is only those rad fems that think that men are constantly objectifying every woman that see and do not think of women other than sex objects rather than the truth that men see women as women except for very short instances.

Having thought about it more some people have created whole careers peddling the snake oil that is objectification.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Lap Dancer Versus Stripper

It's TonyN here and I am going to let Chasmal lead on the Leeds aspect. Today I want to pick up on a discussion I had on twitter with an ex dancer and a current one. Yes I know the title sounds like a porno film but it should give google some fun.

I made reference to strippers as a job title and I had it explained that not every dancer likes that term some prefer Lap dancer although not every dancer likes that term either. The reason being is the imagery and connotations that each term brings and yes there is a stigma that affects people for exercising a free choice, however Edie has done a fine piece about stigma on moronwatch (here) so would like to concentrate on the perspective that come up in discussions.

So I went to see striptease for the first time in a pub in Battersea and 90% of my personal experiences come from the London pub strip scene. In that time I grew up with the term stripper so it is probably natural that is the one I subconsciously identify with. So in the 80s' and early 90s' striptease was the pub and working mans club with the only exceptions being Carnival and Sunset Strip both of which were in Soho (London) and were laid out like cinemas were you paid once and could stay as long as you like. But in general the pubs didn't have stages and the dancers walked around. Come 1995 with Lap and Table Dancing coming in from America there was a push to change the industry from where the pub paid the dancers to bring customers in to dancers paying clubs to work there and one on one dancing being how money was earned.

So you have the walk around customer interaction compared to the bump and grind lap dance (dancers don't shoot me yet please). Both have been stigmatised stripper supposedly being cheap uneducated working class girls who can't earn money any other way and Lap Dancers supposedly up market drug addicts who will do anything for their next fix. Strangely this is still the view of places like Mumsnet where the feminist section will insult anyone who dares question their beliefs and if anyone seems to be posting stuff they can't answer they will soon get banned. And these myths keep on rolling on and on and on because people can't deal with the truth that there are dancers who are intelligent, articulate and educated who work both aspects of the industry.

So the discussion we were having on twitter did lead to the issue of pubs being more working class that the clubs or they targeted at a different audience. And for a while this was true but London adapted and many pubs moved to a more club like environment. But there are still the traditional strip pubs just that they have stages and dancers can't get close to the customers.And in the club we no longer have any physical contact and the concept of a lap dance as an accurate description of what goes on is laughable.

So stripper, lap dancer or exoctic dancer (which is how I first saw boards outside pubs in the 80s' describing what is going on) it still is a label and stigma. And yet I have met dancers from all over the world who are educated, intelligent and making a free choice. Dancers who have competed in the Olympics, have been highly qualified sports people, educated at some of the best universities in the world, who can talk about the higgs boson with authority and that are genuinely wonderful warm people. The problem being so long as people put labels on other people everyone suffers. Working Class or Upper Class. Single, married or divorced. They are people, not objects, with a wonderfully diverse nature that want to provide entertainment. Do people really believe that any label, any stigma is anything other than Objectification of the worst sort? As to are the pubs now still working class, not so much at least in london as there is a pretty big choice of where dancers can work be it the more traditional pub or the more club like pub dancers can work across the spectrum of venues and what may have been true 25 years ago has changed.

I know there was a difference between the pubs and the clubs in the 90s' and that the labels from that period still exist but I get annoyed because those labels still carry a stigma of belief even if the reality is complete different. When are people going to stop hating and start appreciating?

Okay so that is my take and it is only ever a personal opinion but I look forward to the day that the labels that are covers for hate speak are recognised for what they are.

TonyN (

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Leeds Council - Shall We Have A Bet?

Hi, its Chasmal here and you may not be aware that yesterday Leeds Council met and decided to rubber stamp Rebecca Charlwoods plan to cap the number of clubs in Leeds. They decided to implement this policy with the full knowledge that it will cost 200 people their livelihoods, but quite frankly that is not an issue that Leeds Council could really care less about.

Firm details are hard to come by, but an article here claims that.....

'The council’s licensing committee will review each existing licence when they are due for renewal later this year, where the number of strip clubs will be whittled down from 7 to 5'. 

What really makes me laugh was this quote from Rebecca Charlwood. You can see the full article here...

"We have one side which is the women's groups who are opposed to any kind of sexual entertainment at all and the other side which is the proprietors and the people that use the clubs.

"We wanted to find a middle ground, a moderate policy, that reflected the main bulk of the people of Leeds and their views."
Oh come on Rebecca, don't try and paint yourself as a moderate. You are one of the people who are opposed to any kind of sexual entertainment at all. Lets go back in time to Rachel Reeves blog where we learn that....

'....Cllr Rebecca Charlwood, Moortown, is spearheading the campaign....' to '....get these inappropriate venues out of prominent city centre locations.....'

Furthermore in the BBC article we also learn that..

 '.......85% of the 1,847 people who responded to a public consultation supported the cap......'

Hang on a minute. How does this new policy reflect 'the main bulk of people of Leeds and their views when only .2% of the population expressed a view supporting the cap.

StrippingTheIllusion is going to make a prediction about the two clubs that will get axed in the coming licensing review. Now if I am correct, I have a 1 in 42 chance of correctly predicting the names of the 2 clubs that will be have their licenses removed, but I think I will be proven correct when Leeds Council Licensing Committee try and line up Wildcats and Red Leopard for the chop.

Do not fool yourself that anything remotely close to democracy is happening here, the decision has already been made....

In the coming weeks, we will revisit this matter and highlight issues that we believe readers will find disturbing and that point to a streak of corrupt arrogance within Leeds Council that you will find breathtaking...

Monday, July 15, 2013

Leeds Insanity

Hi Its Chasmal here following up on Tonys piece on Leeds Council and Rebecca Charlwoods campaign to slash the number of clubs in the City and deny about 300 people a way of making a living.

The naivety that is being displayed by the Council is quite frankly beyond belief. It is to me quite obvious that the current Charlwood campaign is designed to remove Red Leopard and Wildcats from their current location in Leeds city centre. The Council aim to achieve this by either forcing them to change locations or by revoking their operating licenses, despite their being not a single infringement of their conditions of trading.

Lets look at this....

If the Council choose to revoke the SEV licenses, they will be taken to court and this will include a judicial review, which will be expensive because the Council would probably lose.

If a forced move of premises is the method of attack, the Council may well find themselves liabke for the costs associated with the move. Lets have a look at this in more detail and see what the cost centres would be...

Costs associated with settlement of outstanding lease period...

Legal fees for the above,

Cost of locating suitable premises,

Cost of ensuring new premises meet all safety and fire regulations,

Fit out and decoration of new premises,

Costs associated with move to new premises.

A ball park estimate of the above figures places the liability at around £2 million, but don't forget there are two, possibly three venues that may be involved, so lets total it out at around £5 million.

So in other words, Rebecca Charlwood is aiming to commit the Council to a potential liability of £5 million, with the full knowledge that the Council is suffering severe budget cuts, needing save £55 million in the coming year. In an article you can read here, the full extent of the cut backs being contemplated by the Council are as follows....

Eight residential homes and four adult day centres could close, but hey that's alright because lets face it, the security and safety of the elderly is nowhere near as important as getting those awful clubs away from the Town Hall.

A grant for school uniforms could be scrapped and nursery fees may rise, but still remember that education standards are meaningless when considered against the evil of lapdancing clubs.

More than 300 public service jobs will also be shed, but maybe that's not so bad because the Council can provide some kind of job training scheme similar to the one that Rachel Reeves suggested for unemployed lap dancers and club staff. Oh sorry they can't because they have no money.

Apparently Council leader, Keith Wakefield, said “painful decisions” had to be made in order to “protect front line services”, but he didn't mention anything about 'painful decisions' being made in order to protect the intellectual vanity of Rebecca Charlwood.

“What we have actually found by slight (sic) of hand, smoke and mirrors, is that our grant cut has meant we have had to find £55m. That makes it one of the worst settlements in the country – except for Bristol, the worst settlement out of the core cities. It’s still very much the northern cities taking the hit.”

Well I think I can safely say that club owners in Leeds have that the Council are dab hands at sleight of hand and smoke and mirrors themselves as they contemplate reserving about £5 million to close some clubs.

But at least the Council can get the cash they need by charging the public more for services. Apparently some of their ideas include.....

* Increasing Council house rents, garage rents and service charges by 5.9 per cent;

* Increasing children’s nursery fees by £2 per day;

* Increasing sport charges by approximately 4 per cent;

* Increasing bereavement charges by 7.5 per cent, although hardship grants will be available.

* Increasing parking charges for motorists up until 8pm

* Increasing the cost of residential car parking permits.

* Starting to charge for previously free adult social care services and free annual city events, such as the Party in the Park.

* Scrapping some free home-to-school/college travel from September, which would save £2.8m, or about half what the Council will need to relieve 300 people of their income.

So if you have an elderly relative whose care home has just closed, or you have a child without a school uniform or used to work for the Council and now find yourself jobless, please remember that Rebecca Charlwood not did nothing to help, but she in fact made things worse.

Is it just me or have Leeds Council taken leave of their senses?

Is it just me or are Leeds Council about to demonstrate that they are not fit for purpose?

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Another Quick Leeds One

Well good old Rebecca Charlwood has got her way and is now ramming her morality down everyone's throat. Having set up a working group primarily populated with her puppets she now tells the BBC (here) how the policy will come into force in September. Because this is probably going to be a "victory" for Object and the religious zealots I will rush pieces out as soon as I spot them or they come up on other blogs.

Well I feel sorry for the residents because the word is that a "because we can" approach by the council trying to shut down existing businesses is going to be fought. I have no doubt that when the original consultation results are brought into play and the manufactured solution from a working group that had one objective person on it and no representation from the industry it will look a lot like a witch hunt.

So this will be high on the radar for September and I am sure Team Reeves/Charlwood will continue to get mentions on this blog.


An Historical View?

Ok well I was going over information on the web and found a message from the LDA to Minister of Culture, Media and Sports. So I thought I would revisit that and put my own spin on it where I can add anything of value.

Memorandum submitted by The Lap Dancing Association (LDA) 

  The Lap Dancing Association is the only established trade body representing the UK's responsible and professional lap-, pole- and table dancing club operators. We represent a third of all lap dancing clubs in the UK. The LDA's aim is to promote the highest standards of professionalism and responsibility towards our staff, dancers, customers and local communities.
  You will be aware that the licensing regime for lap dancing clubs has recently been subject to political and media criticism—in particular the degree of proliferation and the level of scrutiny clubs are subject to. Campaigns by feminist groups are based in a series of misleading myths about the industry. This brief seeks to clarity the situation.
"Lap Dancing Clubs are licensed in the same way as coffee shops"
  This is simply untrue. Unless they serve refreshments after 11.00 pm coffee shops don't even need a licence. Lap dancing clubs on the other hand are covered by the Licensing Act 2003. The Act introduced one type of licence to replace the previously required six forms of generic licence. This change was implemented specifically to introduce more effective controls on premises' licensable activities via local authorities' new power to impose individually tailored permissions. Since the implementation of the Act, over 170,000 individually tailored permissions have been implemented on licensed premises, with conditions appropriate to the risk and nature of the business being applied.
  Those applying for "regulated entertainment" under their premises licence are subject to rigorous scrutiny and a public consultation process. Indeed, premises must also tick Box N on the licence application to state their intention of offering entertainment of an adult nature. Premises licences are tailored to the activities that will be offered by each venue, using a clearly defined operating schedule. This sets out how lap dancing clubs will comply with the four objectives of the Licensing Act:
    —  the prevention of crime and disorder;
    —  public safety;
    —  the prevention of public nuisance; and
    —  the protection of children from harm.
  A lap dancing club's licence is tailored to the needs of the business and carries specific conditions, many of which have been proposed by the operator. Some examples of licence conditions include:
    —  licensed door supervision;
    —  strict age-related admissions policy;
    —  CCTV requirements; and
    —  nature of the entertainment eg partial nudity only.
  The Lap Dancing Association has a code of conduct for operators and dancers which can also be used by Local Authorities as model conditions on a licence.
  The reality is that regulation and restrictions on offering a latte or a lap dance are poles apart.
The regulations have got even stricter to govern the industry and now we have a structure where clubs can be fined up to £20,000 for infringements. Certainly with all the regulations in place it has never been tougher for clubs to trade and dancers to earn a living.

"Café style licensing means local authorities and local people have little or no say over where or how many clubs set up"
  This again is simply untrue. Concerns about need or whether a new club is appropriate for a local community are, first and foremost, considered under the local planning regime. Local authorities have almost unbounded discretion to grant or reject an application. In considering planning permissions, they also have the ability to adopt local plans setting out policies in respect of certain types of licensed premises, including lap dancing clubs. Additionally, nightclubs are categorised a "sui generis" under the Use Classes Order in planning legislation. This ensures that any operator wishing to turn their premises into a nightclub must undergo a fully consultative planning permission process. Obtaining planning permission is by far the biggest hurdle operators face when opening a new lap dancing club. Many applications are flatly refused at planning stage.
  In addition, the Licensing Act 2003 introduced a right for residents to oppose an application, complain about an existing operator and call for a review of a licence. Contrary to what is claimed by the Fawcett Society, this right is not restricted to those living within 100m of an outlet. The Act does not define any vicinity; residents need only demonstrate that they are affected by an application or outlet. Local residents are able to object to any application on the grounds that it does not meet one or more of the four licensing objectives. Local authorities can only take such objections into account. It is not in the local authorities' power to refuse an application on the grounds of subjective moral objections.
  This was a very significant change from the previous 1964 Act. A single objection can halt a licence application in its tracks and a single complaint can lead to the revocation of the licence. By way of example, in a recent case in Durham, a Council ignored objections from local residents and the Magistrates Court reversed their decision, showing how effective and influential local complaints can be.
  The reality is that planning and licensing restrictions give local authorities and local communities full powers of consultation, complaint and control.
Once again the 2009 regulations where applied have in fact given people in councils powers to apply their morals. Certainly looks like that in Leeds and Oxford.

"There has been massive expansion and normalisation of the lap-dancing industry since the Licensing Act came into force"
  The first Lap Dancing Club in the UK was opened in 1995. Industry figures for this year show approximately 150 dedicated lap-, pole- and table dancing clubs across England and Wales, which in fact represents very gradual growth, in the context of a growing hospitality industry. As set out above, the implementation of the Licensing Act 2003 has not made it easier to get a licence for a lap dancing club. In fact the controls in place are more rigorous than the former regime.
  The relatively small growth in lap dancing clubs should also be viewed within the context of an expanding and mature UK leisure industry. There are approximately 57,000 pubs and bars across England and Wales. The reality is that the lap dancing industry is a small but vibrant part of the UK entertainment industry that has grown steadily. It is worth noting that official licensing statistics do not separate out lap-, pole- and table- dancing clubs from general pub, bar and club industry statistics, meaning there is no way for Object and Fawcett Society to substantiate their claim that the number of lap dancing venues has "doubled" to 300 across the UK since the implementation of the Licensing Act 2003.
  The reality is that generating fears of a "massive expansion" supports the case for those with a moral objection to the very existence of the industry. Such subjective assessments can and should have no place in the regulatory regime for a legitimate industry.
I would point that I now have 243 venues with licenses. However several have stopped trading and a few have elected to avoid the horror of reapplying and gone back to being clubs or pubs.

Lap dancing clubs are part of the commercial sex industry
  Lap dancing clubs are a small part of the vibrant UK leisure and entertainment industry. They are not sex encounter establishments. Our performers are financially independent, self-employed women. They are not sex workers.
  LDA member clubs have "acceptable behaviour standards" for customers and invest in CCTV and licensed security staff to ensure high standards of management. Each performer is required to observe a rigorous dancers' code of practice.
  We do not condone illegal activity. Any demand for sexual services from a customer will result in eviction from the premises. Performers are clearly warned that making any inappropriate arrangements will lead to dismissal from the Club.
  The reality is that, while lap dancing is a sexy industry, sex is not for sale.
  We would also cite that on average, our clubs derive 70% of turnover from sale of alcohol, and 30% from dances. The performance of lap dancing is ancillary to alcohol sales.
How accurate these figures are now I am not sure but the fact is it is Sexy not Sex for Sale but of course the moralists wouldn't want to admit that because it weakens their incredibly weak arguments.
Requiring lap dancing clubs to have an additional Sex Encounter Establishment Licence (SEEL) would give local authorities greater control
  There is a campaign calling for the "reclassification" of lap dancing clubs. This is in itself a myth. The imposition of a Sex Encounter Establishment Licence (SEEL) regime would not constitute a "reclassification", but rather a secondary licence and additional layer of regulation.
  In reality, an additional SEEL licence would do nothing to increase local authorities' power to control the operation of and activity within lap dancing clubs. It would leave existing bad practice and irresponsible operations untouched. The only thing a SEEL regime would do is to give local authorities the power to refuse outright an application for adult entertainment provisions.
  Local authorities already have considerable powers to regulate the opening and operation of lap dancing outlets, and need to be made more aware of the full extent of them.
  The SEEL was introduced under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982. Its purpose is to regulate those establishments offering entertainment of an adult nature that do not sell alcohol, such as sex cinemas and sex shops. As such premises do not sell alcohol, they do not require a regular premises licence and therefore fall outside of any form of regulation. The SEEL was therefore developed to provide regulation for these establishments.
  When the SEEL regime was introduced, there was some discussion as to whether its provisions should be extended to cover adult entertainment provided in licensed premises. The matter was also raised during the passage of the Licensing Act 2003. Both times it was agreed that the licensing regime was the most appropriate mechanism for regulating this type of entertainment. Dual licensing was explicitly rejected.
  While we very much share concerns about unregulated or inadequately controlled establishments, the LDA does not support current suggestions that lap dancing clubs should be required to hold an additional SEEL. Two licences would be an unnecessary and costly duplication of regulation for the established industry, which will not improve standards, help protect the dancers or prevent opportunistic pubs from offering unregulated strip nights. All of this can, however, be effected through the Licensing Act 2003.
  The reality is that the imposition of SEELs on already licensed premises would involve huge practical problems for licensing authorities and operators, as a robust and detailed description of nude or partially nude entertainment would have to be drawn up. If not, the licence could inadvertently capture everything from traditional burlesque—made popular today by Dita Von Teese—to naked actors on stage in the theatre—like Daniel Radcliffe in Equus. Impromptu performances by stag-do strippers could also find themselves in breach of licence conditions.
  Furthermore, the SEEL would simply cost operators an estimated extra £8000 per year to run their businesses in exactly the same manner as before, but under a bad name. Neither our clubs nor performers would accept the "sex industry" label.
So in the end it wasn't SEEL but SEV as a label and the worries in 2008 became reality for 2013.

"Lap dancing clubs create no go areas for women and increase sex crimes"
  There is no evidence to suggest that lap dancing clubs create no go areas for women, or increase sex crimes.
  Groups opposed to lap dancing clubs base this assertion on a one-sided small scale report in Camden, conducted by Lilith and Eaves Housing For Women. The report can in no way be held up as an independent, unbiased analysis of the impact of lap-dancing clubs. The author says "Of course it would be wonderful if strip clubs could be eradicated tomorrow".[9
  The report associates increases in rape and indecent assault specifically with the presence of lap dancing clubs in the area, despite the fact that these licensed venues represent just 0.35% of the late night entertainment venues in Camden. Camden has approaching 2,000 pubs, 129 licensed entertainment venues; of these only seven are lap dancing clubs.
  Metropolitan Police statistics in fact show that:
    —  Rape offences in Camden fell by 53% between 1999-2000 to 2007-08.
    —  Other sexual offences in Camden fell by 3.8% between 1999-2000 to 2007-08.
    —  Latest figures show that residents of Camden are less likely to be a victim of a rape or a sexual offence than residents in Westminster or Islington (boroughs used for comparison in the report),
  The reality is that there is no evidence to suggest that there are significant problems relating to other forms of disorder, anti-social behaviour or public nuisance surrounding the operation of lap dancing clubs. Indeed, all the evidence points to the contrary. For example, analysis of Birmingham police call-out statistics reveals 14 incidents per lap-dancing club as compared to 77 per conventional nightclub.[10
  There is simply no evidence to demonstrate a causal link between the opening of lap dancing clubs and crime. 
And now we know the Lilith report wasn't worth the paper it was printed on. Even in 2008 the figures were shown to be inaccurate but don't let that worry you Object with it still referred to on the Object website.

"Lap dancing clubs do not comply with local authority obligations under the gender equality duty"
  Gender Equality Duty requires Local Authorities to "proactively promote gender equality". We can only assume that the anti-lap dancing campaigners are trying to suggest that granting licences to clubs where self employed women dance freely under their own volition is somehow discriminatory.
  The reality is that this is clearly not true. 
Obviously we now know all the dancers have been brainwashed. This constant referral to gender equality is strange as the majority of people in the industry are women so in fact the strip industry in more gender equal than the city. 

"Lap Dancing objectifies women"
  Objectification is an entirely subjective attitude and we simply support a woman's right to do the job she wants. To suggest that women who are confident in their naked bodies are somehow anti-feminist is wrong, and sets the feminist debate back half a century. Dancers are self-employed and frequently financially stable individuals. There is an enjoyment and pride in their profession, for which they train and rehearse with great skill.
  Our criticisers have obviously never visited a lap dancing club. The reality is that, if they had, they would realise that although the girls take their tops off, it is definitely they who wear the trousers.
But the word objectification is so convenient when every other argument has been blasted out of the water. The question though is does object concern itself with all forms of objectification or only the one they need to think they have won an argument? Been here before but as a reminder Object objectifies  dancers on two levels but they don't care.

Sorry for the length but from 2008 this has been sitting as an available resource in government files yet I can't think of a single time it has been quoted.


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Blackpool Disabled BS

Well so much for just a quick rattle off before the cricket. Seen the most horrific BS from a council on the Melon farmers blog and have to put it here so I can let rip.

The bosses of Eden, on the Promenade, applied to Blackpool Council for permission to open a new club on Queen Street, Eden 1. To approve the licence would have been against the council’s policy of having a maximum four licensed lap dancing venues in the town,

Eden owners believed their new business would cater for mobility impaired customers saying that no other venue had proper and step free access for disabled people.

Councillors were supposedly concerned about the safety of the two-storey building, which has a lift, in the event of a fire and the committee voted against granting a licence.

The licensing dept also claimed that there is no proven demand for striptease among the disabled (Presumably they didn't bother with any market research to verify this). pointed out that this is not really relevant anyway given demand for a particular premise is not a factor that licensing should take account of (i.e. you can’t refuse to licence a business because you think it has no market, as that is contrary to the EU trade directive).

Now you may or may not know I am a wheelchair user (yeah this is going to out me probably) so think I can speak for at least some of the disabled and I would love to see more venues that are disabled friendly. What a load of rubbish that a council can think they can speak for any minority without engaging with that minority. Well Blackpool Council just be glad I don't live in the area or I would be giving the licensing committee more than just a piece of my mind. I love how the dancers can use their bodies particularly on the Pole, physical disability heightens that appreciation and to Blackpool Council I say get a grip and stop inventing reasons. It would have been easy to discuss the use of only the ground floor for disabled customers using the lift as an excuse is showing your not using your brains.

TonyN wheelchair user and still has what is left of a brain!.

My Oxford Thinking Cap.

So first day of the Ashes (important to us cricket fans in the UK) but I wanted to let the latest exercise my mind had spout forth before I get too involved in it.

As we know Oxford has turned into a battleground but thinking about it this should never have happened. I may be wrong (it has happened once before) but I think the council has worked deliberately to close the venue and manufactured the situation. Had my thinking cap on and this is why I sort of have that feeling.

If we remember the Lodge moved to it's new location in 2011 which was because the council had issues with the old location. The owner decided rather than fight a costly legal battle that would hurt local taxpayers he would move. Fast forward to 2013 and look at the decision of the court and suddenly one of the key reasons for agreeing to try and close the Lodge was location and  from the court bullet points of the ruling (6) The sixth bullet point in the 2012 Reasons highlighted the 2012 evidence that operation of the lap-dancing club had created “a hostile atmosphere in the locality” and “a heightened fear of the risk of sexual violence”. The 2012 Sub- Committee went on to express the view that, whilst there was no evidence of any actual violent incidents, the heightened fear reported was at least “in part” due to the existence of the lap-dancing club and they were “mindful” of the Council’s duty to take reasonable steps to prevent crime and disorder.

See now this is where the move was a setup, there is no way that point could have stood with a long established venue that had a good track record. Yet a move to an area where the council knew they would be wanting to close the Lodge because of the Oxpens redevelopment. So they would have had the plans started a couple of years ago at least, yet "point" the Lodge to the area.

Now the club would know what the council said but if there was any hint of they said Oxpens being a good place to move to this would be a deliberate set up.

I also find it interesting that there was nothing about the student accommodation mentioned in point (4) in 2011 that changed in 2012... was the accommodation only built in the last year or was the fact deliberately held back for use once the club had moved.

In fact flicking through the reasons given it is amazing how many were not mentioned in 2011 but were in 2012 even though those circumstances didn't change. It would seem that the council had plans long before the club moved to shut them and they obviously felt that an established venue with no history of trouble and minimal complaint from the police would be difficult. Moving to a place without the track record makes it that much easier for the council to bend the truth.

And finally I will bring this up again and again that it seems hearsay is valid now in the british courts so we can look forward to plenty more hearsay being used to close legitimate businesses the council don't like.

TonyN (

Monday, July 8, 2013

Object and How to Fail at Minority Influence

So waiting on things and with the summer rushing in to distract everyone I thought now would be a good time to go back to discuss everyone's favourite group Object and I want to talk about the way they are failing to engage with minority influence. I did wonder if this might help them but then realised they have already done themselves so much harm it would take years to rebuild in the areas they failed in.

So the key is about minorities influencing the majority and getting opinions and even policies changed. At that is the first thing no matter how Object play their ideology they are a minority although they act as though they represent a majority. One of the most important aspects of getting a working minority influence is a consistent message that no one within the minority group deviates from.

So this is where we get the issues of people believing Object as they have a history of changing their statements and also their own members seem to have differences when you try to debate with them. Remember Object although they try to pretend they are a charity that works for the good of people they are in fact a lobby group. And the one fact about lobby groups is they try to influence decision makers.

If we go back to the origin of Object they were there to support strippers and work with them to exit the industry, and to be honest that was their biggest mistake and assumption. See they assume that dancers were unintelligent and all of them wanted to leave the industry. So they set themselves up to help strippers. Now here we have an organisation that has been asking for funding based on a belief from their middle class ivory tower backgrounds where they have subsumed their parents morals. Now they must of had a big shock when the strippers basically ignored this so called help and even more so when they realised that a large percentage are actually highly intelligent and making their own choices. So the whole set of great expectations ended with a whimper. They keep saying we only want to help the dancers, now they only want to help them become unemployed.

So we get the change in message because they didn't get the response from the dancers they wanted they then decide well lets tackle this another way and changed their method and approach. Which is unfortunate as the research by romanian born french social psychologist Serge Moscovici shows that minority influence only really works if the message stays the same. Now obviously there will be a core of supporters that will follow Object but those outside the core wonder why the message has change and where the group may end up.

So lets take the current Object attack on Lads Mags. Now I am a little older so rarely read them but I do like having the choice to purchase one if I want. And originally the message was about maybe using covers and placing the mags out of the eyeline of children (not going to stop them seeing the covers of female magazines). Now the message has changed to we don't want to ban them we just don't want shops to sell them. Errrmmm isn't that a ban in all but name?

So once again the key message has changed and people wonder if Object are able to ever say what they mean or mean what they say? The average individual would get confused over the changing messages, I know I have over the years. The issues change and so do Object but their really have missed the whole keeping the message the same aspect to their changes. U turns are not minor little aspects of flexibility.

TonyN (

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Infamy, Infamy, Oxford has it in for me.

Well yesterday was a sad day, a judge decided that Oxford council could take the license away from the Lodge even though nothing had changed in the last year.

What this appears to be is a deliberate set up by the council to get rid of the lodge. The club had moved to a new location in 2011 to satisfy the council as they did not like where it was located. The club was placed in an under developed area called the Oxpens and the council was happy with this location.

In 2012 the license was refused even though the club had moved to satisfy the council. So it seems that someone brought up the issue of the local ice skating rink. Which was there when the council got the club to move! So did the club have trouble? No although there is a night club nearby which has had a lot of trouble with the police.

You would think a judge would look at this and go no change so no reason to close the club. BUT the judge for some reason believes the council is in the right, not sure why apart from he believed the club had moved to a council suggested location so obviously (to him) this implies that the club needs to close.

Now strangely the council has also recently shown plans for the redevelopment of Oxpens, which even if the Ice Rink hadn't of done for the club it would have been used in a year or two. So it seems the leader of the council had it set to close the club no matter what. Back in 2010 Mr Price said he did not want any clubs in Oxford. So he has set out to get his own way without any consultation or any discussions just imposing his will. Now will the council compensate the owner? Of course not, they may have stitched him up after using a church as an excuse in 2011 to move him and a ice rink in 2012 to close him.

Clubs beware councils may see this work and go all out at closing venues using any excuse they can find.

Also there is the issue of the fact that the dream boys are appearing in Oxford soon, now I have no objections to women enjoying the same rights and pleasures as men and even that they can take things much further than any club can. However does appear the council not only will put a knife in the back of the club owner but that they are two faced.

So to the dancers and staff of the Lodge I really feel for you, that a council can set an agenda and take people's livelihoods away absolutely stinks.

And finally I am not sure that this ends here, the whole issue revolves around article 1 of protocol 1 which as it use this as my mantra everyone knows that people are entitled to enjoy their possessions. Now a license that needs to be renewed each year is still a possession and I believe if the council forces the club to close under these circumstances then at least compensation should be paid. And to all the clubs reading this you need to decide if you want this precedent to stand. It could affect all clubs in the future so better to beat it now than let it take other clubs. Talk to your legal people, get advice and if you can then please support the Lodge as one day that could be you.

TonyN (