Porno and Politics: Same thing, only different
Expanded from the 7-30-2006 Daily Sparks (Nev.) Tribune

Thanks be to God, Hef or another deity, somebody has finally made this year's politics interesting.

State treasurer Brian Krolicki (there's a name right out of Boogie Nights) has injected sex into this year's politics.

All I can say is what took you so long? We haven't had anything this good in Nevada since Bubba retired.

In case you haven't been paying attention – and before this, why would you? – Krolicki has accused his surging Republican primary opponent, Barbara Lee Woollen (a fox fresh from Boogie Nights central casting) of aiding and abetting pornography.

Glory hallelujah, we got ourselves a race!

Woollen runs a film equipment rental business and some of her clients apparently produce feelthy pictures.

Obscenity is in the eye of the beholder as defined by personal hangups and blind ambition. Mr. Krolicki comes with copious quantities of both.

Osama bin Laden defines as pornographic any woman walking down the street not covered head to toe in a burlap sack and accompanied by an adult male relative and a seeing eye dog. (Most women can't see through burlap).

Ms. Woollen did the one thing guaranteed to inflame any politically ambitious alpha male: she funded a TV ad budget bashing Mexicans, this year's version of uppity blacks or marriage-minded queers.

Mr. Krolicki is in charge of the state's investments. Has he put any of our money into any company peddling or profiting from porn? You know, like Disney/ABC which went NYPD very blue in prime time by showing Dennis Franz's bare tuckus.

Ms. Woollen never asked that question or others about Krolicki's shady cronyism in office, she just sued his ass for hurting her feelings. I hope the case makes it all the way to the Supremes in DC where it will at least get a fair hearing before Justice Clarence Thomas, the one judge with a taste for, experience with, and understanding of traditional American porn.

"These are not family films," Krolicki aides snorted as they alternately thumped their chests and little black books. "These are not films that promote or resemble in any way traditional family values."

Nevada has played host to a lot of films that don’t fit their moral code. Has Mr. Krolicki ever gone to Gov. Dudley Do-Right and asked him to order the state film commission to keep such outfits out of our fair state?

Sexually explicit films are part and parcel of traditional Nevada values – nobody sells sex like we do. (Does anybody recall how families get here in the first place?)

At bottom, all we're talking about is societal taboo. Our Puritanical progenitors, much like their Islamic soul brothers, decreed that sexual double standards and the subjugation of women should be built into the foundations of our society.

"Societies based on private property and competition, in which monogamous families became practical units for work and socialization, found it especially useful to establish this special status of women, something akin to a house slave in the matter of intimacy and oppression," historian Howard Zinn wrote in his monumental and bestselling A People's History of the United States.

"An oppression so private would turn out hard to uproot," Zinn correctly concluded.

Women even today are paid far less than men for comparable work, still victims of the taboos which burned witches and an occasional politician.

Nevada lives on the wages of sin, but the body politic which allows the open promotion of prostitution (just exactly what do you think Las Vegas means with those tax-funded "what happens here, stays here" ads?) wants its politicians to proselytize Puritanism.

How many times have you heard Gomorrah South talk about having "more churches per capita"? More than where? Turns out that the claim is bogus, urban legend, but no less than former Las Vegas Mayor Jan Jones reiterated it on Good Morning America a few years back.

The Mormon Church cuts the baby in half with corporate moral obtuseness. Their policy is that LDS members can't perform hands-on work taking money from tourists at gambling tables, but it's perfectly alright for a Mormon to own the casino. Joe Conforte would understand.

So, thanks Mr. Krolicki and Ms. Woollen for conducting yourselves in the greedy, spiteful, shallow, self-righteous manner which has made all us voters so jaded. But at least you've sold your campaigns with sex, which makes them more interesting.

That's much more than politics, baby.

That's entertainment.

SPEAKING OF SHOWBIZ. Join me and the usual suspects on Sam Shad's Nevada Newsmakers at 12:30 p.m. this Thursday on KRNV TV-4, repeating at 9:30 p.m. on Charter cable channel 12 in Washoe-Carson-Douglas and bicycling statewide thereafter. I'll be joined on the peerless pundit panel by longtime activist Mylan Hawkins, who spearheaded the cementing of Roe v. Wade into Nevada law in 1990, and uberconservative Republican Chuck Muth.

ELMER GANTRY, CALL YOUR OFFICE. Mr. Shad has scheduled a session of Republican rectitude with Mr. Krolicki and his primary opponents for light-guv on Wednesday, but Ms. Woollen is not on the guest list, at least not yet.

Stay tuned.


   After this column went to press, Lisa Albiniano informed me that she was called by William's doctors at Cal-Davis at 4:00 a.m. Saturday, July 29. She was ordered to immediately take her son to Washoe Med ER, as his blood pressure and heart rate were spiking. (Thank heaven someone at the hospital ordered tests notwithstanding the family's financial straits.)

   William was treated and sent home. Mrs. Albiniano continues her round-the-clock efforts to save her son's life.

Complete info about William's case

REAL FAMILY VALUES. I talked to state officials last week. Terminally ill William Albiniano, age 8, is being reconsidered for insurance coverage under the Nevada Checkup plan.

Cross your fingers, say a prayer and tell people about the yard sale fundraiser at Dee's Used Furniture (775-673-3312) in Sun Valley August 12.

THE ART OF POLITICS. Polly Peacock is hosting an art auction fundraiser for Reno mayoral candidate and occasional Tribune political cartoonist Erik Holland. It takes place at 7:00 p.m. this Thursday, Aug. 3, at 1420 Mount Rose Street in Reno. For info, call (775) 322-3582.

If elected, Mr. Holland can go from drawing cartoons to living one.

Next Sunday, the Nevada Shakespeare Company stages a FREE production of As You Like It at Bartley Ranch Amphitheater.

Get there seven-ish. Info: (775) 324-4198.

Director Jeanmarie Simpson "(whose award-winning play A Single Woman [about anti-war Congressmember Jeannette Rankin] ran Off-Broadway in 2005), promises a sexy, lively treatment of one of the Bard's most popular cross-dressing comedies," according to the company's Cameron Crane.

Don't tell Brian Krolicki. He might try to have it shut down.

Maybe we can persuade his opponent to film it.

Be well. Raise hell.

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Andrew Barbano is a 37-year Nevadan, editor of and webmaster of His opinions are strictly his own, as always. Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Daily Sparks (Nev.) Tribune since 1988.


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