Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Is there a Pimp In The House

Coming Soon to The Parliament Channel:-
"Pimp My Law" starring Jacqui Smith

by johnofgwent


It's an emotive word. For former IT freelancers like GA and me, it brings instant memories of the "recruitment agent", the middle man who did absolutely bugger all except presuade clients into "exclusive" arrangements where no-one worked on the site except through them, allowing the "Agent" as he called himself, or "Pimp" as we - and the client - called him to earn a nice little crust on the take off the back of our being forced to sell our bodies to the client through him.

Except of course GA and I only sold our bodies as vessels for the minds therein and usually only during the hours of daylight and the only part of our bodies the client was ever interested in were the fingers that flew over the keyboard. Well that's my story anyway.

But the abusive term that GA and I used to describe these "facilitators" has its roots in a much older, and much darker, industry. One that "New Labour New Speak" has invented new words for. And one that the Home Secretary stands accused of reneging on a promise made to those trapped within.

A while before her partner's interest in porn films became a matter of fact in the public domain, Jacqui Smith made the sort of promise that politicians ought to have known better than to make. For her Policing and Crime Bill said in Clause 13 that it would be an offence of purchase, or attempted purchase, of sexual services from anyone "controlled for gain by a third party".

The bill is coming up for its third reading soon thanks in large measure to The Speaker who kindly ensured the parliamentary time for the passage of the third reading was available by yesterday denying an upstart backbencher the opportunity to bring forward a debate and vote of no confidence.

But there seems to be a problem. Clause 13 has been watered down. The words "controlled for gain" now read "subjected to force, deception or threats". So it's still OK to bring a thirteen year old Thai girl to this country and live off the earnings she makes spreading her legs provided she does it willingly, and knew she was coming here to do this all along.

I must be getting cynical in my old age. I have for years rejected the doctrine of the Mary Whitehouses of this world that "watching pornography leads to unhealthy interests in other forms of exploitation" (never having seen any myself mind) but when I saw this story my first thought was "I wonder if Jacqui's trying to keep her other half out of the dock over some other recreational pursuits".

A wholly unfounded and utterly unwarranted thought, of course.

What on earth could I have been thinking to make such a scurrilous connection without the slightest shred of evidence.

Well, to be honest, that first, and utterly unfounded thought was immediately followed by the recollection that the government Jacqui Smith now "serves" showed its true colours when under its previous leader it cheerfully rearranged its policy on tobacco advertising in motor sport after the chief "pimp and fixer" at its heart decided that "bunging blair a bernie" might get another year's advertising.

How can we know that a government so willing to prostitute itself over one policy isn't doing the very same over another ?

The truth is, we can't.

Can you blame me for wondering therefore if there is more to this watering down of legislation than meets the eye ?