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(The Smoking Gun)   TSG gets Pete Townshend's "research paper" on child pornography   ( divider line
    More: Followup  
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36697 clicks; posted to Main » on 14 Jan 2003 at 5:05 PM (15 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2003-01-14 07:33:02 PM  
Kerouac writes: however, I look at intent before I judge.

That's just a recipe for disaster. Motives are relevant when sentencing. But, they're not relevant to the question of whether a crime was committed.
2003-01-14 07:33:17 PM  
Mr_Crink hehe, always entertaining.
2003-01-14 07:34:01 PM  
Kerouac writes: hence, complete.

The bargain is incomplete because the police have no intention of honoring the transaction.
2003-01-14 07:36:41 PM  
Personally, I really want to believe Townshend is innocent. After reading through his articulate and informative essay, which was written before Mozilla had popup-blocking I believe, it makes me feel a little more confident for his defense.

What I'm surprised about is how I haven't seen a post in this thread about the hypocrisy of society in this matter. Insofar as I can tell, you have a school of thought that seems to be shifting faster and faster into a belief that it's alright for children to dress as sexually provocative as they would like. For this, I submit the Abercrombie & Fitch "thong" fiasco (I'd like to see the marketing statistics that got this greenlighted in the first place), teenagers practically having sex at school dances without a problem while chaparoned, and pretty much any fashion geared toward girls that's come out in the last five years. This explosion of perceived promiscuity amongst teenagers all over the media (yes, the media - including MTV) is destined to bleed over into people of older age, as the fine line we still have between teenagers and adulthood is diluted even further. Do you honestly believe this doesn't help fuel a fire in some of these pedophilic consumers?

Let's go back to today, when these very same people that perpetuate this societal shift toward increased sexuality in teenagers are now demonizing a man, without evidence or conviction, of being a pedophile. As if it's ever that cut and dry, but given the way people are quick to play judge, jury, and executioner in this day and age, it doesn't surprise me a bit. It's a staunch hypocrisy, and a conviction by flawed perspective and lack of tangible evidence or knowledge of the situation-at-hand.

In short, am I damning society for producing an inevitable beast? Perhaps. There's a million different angles this subject could be brought on (like the constant equations to the drug war, et al.), but this was one I'm kind of surprised I didn't see.

Now, I'm not an old-fashioned person by any stretch of the imagination. I don't think kids should be confined to dancing apart from one another, just as much as I don't think that pigs can fly. I believe sexuality is something to have a more open dialogue about with teenagers and other adults alike, which is something this country has been lacking since, oh, about the year 1670. However, it'll be a cold day in Hell before I let my child, regardless of age of consent, act even close to as promiscuous as half the teenagers I see on any given day at a mall, as long as he/she is living in my house. This isn't even the same world it was ten years ago, when I was in high school.

Huracan said, "To the best of my knowledge it is illegal to set up a "teen" site which depitcs a 40 year old+ woman parading around sexually while being presented as though they were under 18."

Actually, they just struck that down in the Supreme Court not even six months ago. Simulation of an underage is still legal in the United States, as is CGI, but for however long I couldn't tell you, because they're supposedly going to pursue a ban again rather shortly. Which is why Hustler's "Barely Legal" magazine continues to be one of the hottest sellers in the good old U.S. of A., and nobody's shutting down Hentai sites depicting underagers yet.

And for the person that posted that a 16 year-old sending her 16 year-old boyfriend a nude picture could be arrested, well, I would believe that to be false, given that both are the age of consent. At least here in GA, where they today overturned the 170 year-old law forbidding non-married people to have sex. (Thank God, now I can have sex with my fiancee! *snicker*) It was overturned by a case involving a 16 year-old couple caught having sex in the girl's house, and deemed consentual between both parties.
2003-01-14 07:37:10 PM  

I think it has something to do with soccer.

Actually I have no idea. Sorry.
2003-01-14 07:38:42 PM  

right on
2003-01-14 07:39:58 PM  
This is the most useless argument.

It all boils down to this: Child pornography is wrong. If Townshend wanted to research it, then he should let everyone know (by posting it on his website, or making a press release) that he was researching it. He doesn't have anything to hide right? If he doesn't do that (and he didn't) then he should expect to pay the price for researching child pornography in secret.

2003-01-14 07:41:26 PM  
I think this goes far beyond Townshend. Agree or disagree?
2003-01-14 07:41:45 PM  
He said he was doing research for his autobiography and that he thinks he might have been molested when he was a kid, but doesn't quite remember.

I submit that the title for his autobiography might be, "Who Touched Me.(?)"

Voting en... oh damn.
2003-01-14 07:41:45 PM  
Vanadium agreed.

Ever read "Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates" by Tom Robbins?
2003-01-14 07:42:57 PM  
Negative. I'll have to check it out.

Our society is so ass-backwards in terms of its sexuality that this was bound to happen.
2003-01-14 07:45:15 PM  
I believe I already said it.......... END OF STORY

2003-01-14 07:45:18 PM  

made my day
2003-01-14 07:47:36 PM  
Motives are relevant when sentencing. But, they're not relevant to the question of whether a crime was committed

Completely wrong. Research the legal concept of "criminal mind".

Intent is a very large part of conviction.

and the crime is solicitation of prostitution. Once the solicitation has occurred, the act is complete. It has nothing to do with a transaction or what happens afterwards.

Is selling cocaine illegal? Is it legal to sell it if you plan to go get your cocaine back later?

That's exactly what a crack bust does. A physical sale and handover of the drugs.
2003-01-14 07:49:22 PM  
ToAd -

well, let's see.

He was busted this weekend.

A year ago, he posted on his web site that he was researching this stuff.

So, essentially, he did what you wanted.

2003-01-14 07:50:02 PM  
I can honestly say, as a guy who has cruised plenty of pornon the internet, that I have NEVER seen a site, pop-up or otherwise, that was advertising hard-core child porn. I have seen a few "barely 18" sort of advertisements, but the idea that Pete or anyone else accidently hit a bunch of child porn doesn't wash with me. I've never even seen one of the types of pictures Pete is describing, and don't believe very
many people who weren't looking would find them, either.
And, of course, much of the discussion on this subject has been crap, because many of you are debating whether he can be believed that he was just doing research. Regardless: He intentionally entered a child pornography site and got caught doing it. He admitted to doing it. Guilt is there, intent is there, end of story.
There, now that I cleared this up, we can all move on to something else. :)
2003-01-14 07:50:11 PM  
Damn famous people and their little boy pr0n fetishes.

How does looking at child porn constitute research?

"Oh, about those nekkid kids... I was... um... doing research... for a ... screenpl-... err... I mean a book I am writing... that's it... a book... because I was... in child po-...err -- abused as a child."

Does one need to actually view child porn to write a book on being abused? Wouldn't the actual abuse be sufficient? I have never been abused, so I really don't know; I can only assume that is the way it works.

Number 2:
I think that kiddie pr0n criminals get the same welcome from the other inmates that granny-beaters get.
2003-01-14 07:51:50 PM  
I agree with Kerouac. Intent is very important. What's the difference between 1st and 2nd degree murder, or manslaughter.
2003-01-14 07:52:17 PM  
Kerouac writes: Completely wrong. Research the legal concept of "criminal mind".

I don't need to research it. I already know what it is. And, you've completely missed the point. Intent (criminally speaking) has nothing to do with the purpose for which a crime was committed. Intent is merely the state of mind wherein the person understands and desires the consequences of his act. WHY he acted is totally irrelevant. It is not a part of the corpus delecti of any crime.

Once the solicitation has occurred, the act is complete.

The criminal action is complete; but, the bargain is not. There was no exchange of consideration.
2003-01-14 07:52:51 PM  
Pete makes a good point, though: there are a lot of people out there that want it and they will get it eventually. So, like he suggests in a coy manner, we should all move towards a police-state where you are assumed guilty until innocent and are monitored every second of your life.

Atleast that's what I picked up from his essay. Still, 20,000 people to that one site... I think it's time to scrap humanity and start over on the moon.
2003-01-14 07:53:01 PM  
Cop: Is that LSD you have there?
Me: Why yes it is.
Cop: You do realize that is illegal correct?
Me: Well actually, the question is did I MAKE it?
Cop: Did you.
Me: I did not.
Cop: In that case you may go. (pause) Wait, wait. Did you pay for that? For if you did, it surely supported the producers.
Me: No. The man I received this from mentioned that the first is always free.
Cop: Okay. Have a good day.

all i gotta say is, if a popup secretely downloaded lsd onto my hard drve.....
2003-01-14 07:54:35 PM  
there's no way pete townsend wrote that essay. a lawyer wrote that. have you seen him interviewed? it's not the same voice. it's like reading a well written doctoral thesis on microbiology penned by henry rollins.
2003-01-14 07:55:12 PM  
It's one thing to look at picutres, but paying is a whole diffrent matter...
2003-01-14 07:55:45 PM  
Here's what I don't get... why is this stuff so prominent in Russia? Don't the police make any effort to bust those responsible for this content?
With all the hackers and computer virus designers out there, it seems like it would be easy enough for the police to locate these sites, delete the content, and damage the servers holding them. You just have to hire the right people for the job. I imagine, though, that this line of work would be akin to spending all day killing animals in a slaughterhouse... the risk of being either traumatized or desensitized to the content would be extremely high.
Finally, I think the "Hulk Smash!" method of dealing with pedophiles is counterproductive. Yes, they deserve punishment, but the idea that you can scare them straight by beating them is idiotic. After twenty years of being attacked and raped in prison, what's the first thing that's going to be on their minds when they get out? Revenge. Congratulations, you've just made a bad situation worse.
People often describe pedophiles as sick. What if that's the point... they're mentally ill and in need of psychiatric care? You can hate them if you want, but wouldn't it be better if these people were treated BEFORE they started harming kids?

2003-01-14 07:57:06 PM  
Ebawb - Ever read "Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates" by Tom Robbins?

excellent book...
2003-01-14 07:58:01 PM  
godddamit. HE'S A FREAK! LOCK HIM UP!
2003-01-14 07:59:55 PM  
All you Mozilla fans, remember that Mozilla was still in beta when this paper was written, and beta software isn't usually appealing to the general public. Proxomitron was available at the time though, so Townshend should've used it instead.
2003-01-14 08:00:34 PM  
On a bit of a different tack -

My mother is an alcoholic. She tried to kill herself once, drunk.

When I saw "Leaving Las Vegas", I saw an entirely different movie than most people did.

so, using more than a knee-jerk reaction, i can completely see what would impel a survivor of child abuse to look up what happens to children in this day and age.

ps- the exchange of consideration claim goes completely out the window when you look at a crack bust.
2003-01-14 08:00:39 PM  
Ebawb writes: What's the difference between 1st and 2nd degree murder, or manslaughter.

No. Kerouac is totally wrong on this one. As I noted above, legal intent is not a determination of WHY a person acted. It is merely the determination that the person understood the consequences of his action.

Let's look at your example to further illustrate the point. Murder and manslaughter are both homicides -- but, they're different offenses. Is it ever necessary in a murder trial to find a motive? No. But, it is important to know the state of mind of the offender. That is, for a murder charge to stick, he had to have acted with malice aforethought, which is a cruelty or recklessness of consequence. But, to find malice aforethought, we don't need to know the specific motive.

Motives, as I already stated, are relevant in sentencing. And, in the state's sentencing statutes you find the guidelines that bring aggravating and mitigating circumstances into play.
2003-01-14 08:02:47 PM  
Vanadium hits the truth. Even if Townshend is a pedophile, which I hope he's not, it would mean he's a sick man, someone who needs to have his disease treated, not punished.

There are plenty of people out there who are secret pedophiles with disgusting urges they keep to themselves. I wouldn't be surprised if my middle school P.E. teacher, who used to perform spot jock strap inspections, has a hard drive full of the stuff. Still, an openness to give these people psychological help is probably a better way to go than locking them up.
2003-01-14 08:03:11 PM  
Eraser8 I think you dropped something on my toe.
2003-01-14 08:04:34 PM  
Kerouac writes: i can completely see what would impel a survivor of child abuse to look up what happens to children in this day and age.

I'm sure it will come up in the sentencing hearing. That's where it's relevant.

the exchange of consideration claim goes completely out the window when you look at a crack bust.

You're missing the point again. The crime and the bargain are separate. Since consideration was not mutual, the bargain was not complete. And, that's the difference between police sting operations and Mr. Townshend's conduct. Mr. Townshend completed his trade.
2003-01-14 08:04:42 PM  
maynard james keenan's statement about stinkfist ...

'if you think i'd write a song about anal fisting, well, that's just where you are, i suppose.'

farking jackasses.
2003-01-14 08:05:25 PM  
Besides, the whole issue of the age of consent is so Cut and dry.

In that, even in the good old US of A, different states have different laws on the matter. Most states seem to have a 16-18 range, but there are a few (south carolina, Iowa, colorado) that have lower numbers.

But that's nothing compared to other countries. Such as Argentina, Chile, Columbia, Italy, Korea, Nigeria, Russia (hey), Spain, Syria, Thailand, Togo, Zimbabwe and any number of other countries with an age of consent of 16 or below.

Including a country called Vojvodina that I've never friggin heard of.

Proves that the human animal has no clue what's going on. And everyone wants to think that their own morality is the end all be all truth when what we really have is an arbitrary line.

Certainly, there is no argument that 10 is too young. But by following the letter of the law (using California as an example) 17 years and 364 days is also too young.

And then get into the states that have different ages of consent for males and females, and for different sex acts (double/treble/quadruple standards?) you realize just how screwed the entire system is.
2003-01-14 08:06:10 PM  
Ebawb writes: I think you dropped something on my toe.

Sorry. I guess. By the way, I have no idea what you mean.
2003-01-14 08:06:21 PM  
...well do you think that (some obscure example) should be punished by (some other crap) because I know (some other bullshiat) and it states very cleary that (enough already)...SO THERE, WHO'S WITH ME! (no not The Who)
2003-01-14 08:07:44 PM  
01-14-03 07:34:01 PM Eraser8
The bargain is incomplete because the police have no intention of honoring the transaction.

They dont? DOH! And i was looking forward to meeting a hot policewoman during a sting operation.

/sarcasm for fun
2003-01-14 08:10:58 PM  
Eraser8 -

just to clarify:

Mens Rea means that you hade to know or should have known that you were commiting a crime, and have acted with the intention to commit a crime. That is what I mean by intent.
2003-01-14 08:11:22 PM  

Check out what I just saw when I went to that age of consent link:

[image from too old to be available]

Hint: Look at the banners.
2003-01-14 08:11:36 PM  
Sparehair: People write differently than they speak, sometimes. My patterns of speech are very different from my style of writing, especially something written which is looked over with a fine-tooth comb. Just because someone doesn't speak eloquently doesn't mean his writing should mirror his speech. Thinking otherwise is simply silly. End of story.

And as far as this whole rockstar-meets-kiddie porn thing goes, I really don't care.. and not because I'm cruel and heartless. I'm just sick of turning on the television and listening to the wonderful people on the news (especially Fox News; go figure) babble about how awful this is, and it's touching that Townshend's friends are standing by his side and being supportive.

Stop blaming the consumers. It doesn't work with drugs (I doubt many of you Farkers would like to be locked up for possession, and don't say you don't do it, you liars!), so what gives you the idea that it would work with child porn?

If you want to stop something you feel is a problem, you nip it in the bud. You stop it before it starts. You find the manufacturers and you stop it. If you continue to stop the manufacturing of child porn, then it will become increasingly difficult to find.

Note that the site which Townshend was using came from Texas. Not Russia, which has been mentioned in this thread more times than I can count, but good ol' Texas. So let's shut it down, imprison the creators (you know, the abusers?) and that's that.

I don't believe there's a surefire way to stop child porn from existing. I wish there were, but there simply isn't. There will always be a sick fark who wants to pose his little kids, or his neighbours' kids, in provocative positions. I suppose the best we can do is shut the hell up about this already (I've done my share in beating the dead horse) and try to prevent our children from finding this.

So leave Townshend alone, okay? I believe his motives were pure, and I can't possibly believe anyone who says otherwise. Errors in judgment do occur.

If anyone has anything further to say to me, e-mail me at miles_­apa­rt[nospam-﹫-backwards]onuj*c­om. Thank you, and goodnight.
2003-01-14 08:14:17 PM  
Was he drinking NyQuil when he was giving out his CC#? Grounds for dismissal...
ps kiddi porn of any type is not tolerated by me and should not be tolerated by anyone for anyreason. Its just plain wrong. If he's guilty then fry him. If anyone molests kids fry them as well. Fry the creators, the distributers and anyone else who repeatedly takes part as a consumer. No two ways about it. Once everyone realizes the gravity of the consequences I doubt you will 'accidently' run across any on the web.
Also a side comment....does anyones else think its strange that the was in texas? hmmm so thats what W was up to on his vacation. j/k
2003-01-14 08:15:51 PM  
Vanadium: Check out what I just saw when I went to that age of consent link:

Here's what I got.
[image from too old to be available]
2003-01-14 08:18:17 PM  
I see someone's confusing criminal law and contract law.

The entire concept of consideration is nullified when the contract involves a criminal act.

sorry. Try again.
2003-01-14 08:19:24 PM  
Kerouac writes: Mens Rea means that you hade to know or should have known that you were commiting a crime

Thanks, but I know what mens rea is. And, your definition is a little off. You don't need to know that you were breaking the law. It is enought that you (as I noted earlier) understand and desire the consequences of your act. It is not generally a valid defense to claim that you were unaware that your action was unlawful. If, for example, you knowlingly download child porn, it won't do you any good to argue ignorance of the forbidding statute. Mens rea is present even if you believed you were acting innocently.
2003-01-14 08:22:18 PM  
"If he's guilty then fry him. If anyone molests kids fry them as well. Fry the creators, the distributers and anyone else who repeatedly takes part as a consumer."

This is exactly what I'm talking about.
"Blah, must not understand problem! Must not solve problem rationally! Must have REVENGE! Hulk SMASH!!!"

2003-01-14 08:25:34 PM  
actually, it's your definition that's off.

Mens Rea means Guilty Mind.

It does not mean you had to intend what you were doing.

It means you had to have had some form of criminal intent.

maybe this will help:
mens rea
['menz-'re-e, -'ra-]

pl: mentes reae ['men-'tez-'re-'e, 'men-'tas-'ra-'i]

New Latin, literally, guilty mind

: a culpable mental state

: one involving intent or knowledge and forming an element of a criminal offense
Example: murder contains a mens rea element
(compare actus reus)
Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996.
Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.

yes, you need to know that you were breaking the law - barring the obvious, that ignorance is not a defense.

Essentially, the law must be common enough that you would have known it was illegal.
2003-01-14 08:25:45 PM  
Kerouac writes: The entire concept of consideration is nullified when the contract involves a criminal act.

Wow. You're still missing a very elementary point. We're not talking about whether an illegal transaction can ever be the subject of an enforceable contract. Townshend not only offered money to purchase porn, he received the porn in consideration for his payment. The bargain was complete. This is in stark comparison to a sting in which nothing actually passes from the police to the offender.
2003-01-14 08:27:06 PM  
Interesting thing to consider:

If the webmaster of a meb site you visit put an image on one of their pages, but made it so you were unable to see it, you would end up having that pic in your browser's cache. What's to stop some sick individual from placing a child porn image on a page or in an email, setting it's height and width attributes to "1", then reporting all the visitors to his site as pedophiles?
2003-01-14 08:27:58 PM  
One other issue is that society likes to confuse hebephilia with paedophilia.

hebephilia is being strongly attracted to post-pubescent girls or boys (~14-18).

paedophilia is being strongly attracted to pre-pubescent girls or boys (under ~11).

Paedophilia is a sickness -- in the sense that it is a deviation from what is commonly felt in society or anything that is even biologically sensible.

hebephilia is completely normal. if any guy says he doesn't find 17 year old girls somewhat attractive (to one degree or another) he is lying. Biologically it makes more sense than having sex with a woman who is 30 and already in declining fertility. As one of my OB/GYN friends said one, a 16 year old girl can practically get pregnant by being in the same ROOM as a horny guy. Once girls go through puberty, they are incredibly attractive on a strictly instinctual level to most men of any society. Socially, though, its less acceptable because we attach more emotional significance on marriage in the west than we used to -- if it was still a matter of breeding help for the farm, we wouldn't even bother letting women into college. But since we expect to spend a lifetime together and have long conversations, it isn't appropriate for a 30-year old and a 16-year old to get married/have sex. Up until the last 50 years or so, it was perfectly acceptable for a 16-year old girl to be courted by a man twice her age.
2003-01-14 08:28:20 PM  
Is anyone still reading down her at the bottom of this page?

Has any one of you had to give a credit card number to a free site to prove you are 18? Did you ever get charged anything on you statement? Does that mean you intentionally paid the site owners/pornographers/abusers? Did Pete Townshend?

Has Pete Townshend been tried and convicted by the media spinning public opinion?
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