G. True Nelson: Former Deputy Sheriff, Military Officer, FBI Special Agent, and Security Consultant / Private Investigator. He currently resides in the Portland, Oregon Metro area. He is a writer on crime and judicial process; as well as discussing his personal observations on American culture and social mores.
Some of you may be aware that, besides this commentary blog - which I enjoy doing, I also like to occasionally write short stories. I have recently posted a short story on my sister blog: Online True Stories. The title of the most recent story is That Night. Said story and previous stories can be found at the following. They are probably best read in the indicated order:
November 4th, Election Day, is fast
approaching. I sent in my ballot today.
For those outside of Oregon, you should understand that we
have a vote-by-mail process. Ballots
have already been received by the registered voters in the State and quite a
few Oregonians have already voted.
do I think about voting by mail? Well, it's convenient, but there is definitely an opportunity for minor fraud with that system, and I am
sure it exists to some degree. I would
prefer voting in person and showing photo ID prior to casting one’s ballot; but, of
course, that concept is abhorrent to a predominately ‘blue state’ like
Oregon. So we tolerate a little fraud
here and there. Things like a friend or family member voting for an elderly person – and then having the elderly person scribble their name on
the ballot. Do I know for a fact that
such practices have occurred? Yes.
I don’t vote on every ballot measure or political
position. For example, I did not vote
for the position of US House of Representatives. Why bother?
Earl Blumenauer, the Democrat, will win this District. It’s a no-contest. Districts have been ‘gerrymandered’ to the
point that there is no actual contest in some of them. Party big-wigs pick the candidate, and the
candidate wins in a landslide by acquiring as little as 10% of the votes of
those citizens actually registered in the District. It’s embarrassing. It’s really kind of sad, kind of pathetic.
I voted for Measure 90; “Changes general election nomination
processes: provides for single primary ballot listing candidates; top two
advance.” As an Independent, for
example, I can’t vote in the Primary in any significant way. Well, they try to make believe you can
participate by organizing some hokey primary for the Independents, but it
really means nothing. Oh, I know, it’s
possible under this proposed system that, in subsequent general elections, we
could have two Democrats running against each other in this District. But, we’d still have a choice – which we do
not now have.
I voted against Legalized Recreational Marijuana. If you’ve read my previous blog posts on this
subject, that probably comes as no surprise.
My concern is for kids and young people.
It just sends the wrong message.
I voted against Measure 88; “Provides Oregon resident
‘driver card’ without requiring proof of legal presence in the United
States.” Yes, I’ve heard all the
arguments in favor. I just can’t
understand why we should facilitate, encourage, act as an accomplice to anyone
breaking Federal Law (Misprision of a Felony).
However, such dubious and vacillating legal standards seem to be becoming more
and more prevalent.
Yes, and I am
including Legalized Recreational Marijuana in this opinion.
We either have laws or we don’t. And,
please don’t tell me the roads will be safer with ‘illegal immigrants’ driving
around and those others, who are so inclined, smoking a ‘joint.’
Think about this.
They say that the ‘illegal immigrants’ who are given a ‘driver card’
will be required to have insurance. That’s
nice. What insurance company is going to
give an ‘illegal’ liability insurance, without the State of Oregon indemnifying
the company? And, wouldn’t this insurance,
logically, be very expensive?
Let me give you a hypothetical. An ‘illegal’ is involved in a very serious
accident to which he has been presumed liable.
Let’s say this is a multi-million dollar suit involving someone left permanently
paralyzed. In the meantime, said ‘illegal’
has returned to his country of origin and left his insurance company to defend
a case without the insured being present.
Trust me. Insurance companies
consider these potential circumstances and charge premiums accordingly.
The State of Oregon will have to make certain guarantees to indemnify
insurance companies or those companies will not insure ‘illegals.’ And, as a result, if you’re still with me,
you will already have guessed who ultimately will pay the multi-million dollar
judgment, the Oregon taxpayers.
OK, let’s get serious.
You don’t seriously believe, do you, that Governor Kitzhaber (age 67)
did not know about the past history of Cylvia Hayes (age 47), his long-time
girlfriend and recent fiancée? Come on,
Kitzhaber is an educated man, an apparently sophisticated man, surrounded by
advisors; and nobody, including the Governor, thought to check into Cylvia’s
background: her past marriages, her
allegedly illegal marijuana grow operation, etc., etc.
Doesn’t this sound a little like the Neil
Goldschmidt cover-up? Neil, our past and
possibly our most infamous Governor, molested a young girl over a period of
time. But, those around him who would
have known, or suspected what was occurring, kept quiet. Yes, unfortunately, that’s professional
politics ladies and gentlemen. And, when
these little indiscretions surface, everybody denies knowledge or extends a
weepy apology with the expectation that all will be forgiven. Are we that gullible? Answer:
yes. Kitzhaber, the Democrat,
supported by the public employee unions, minorities, abortion advocates, recreational
marijuana advocates and the generally uninformed, will win re-election in a walk.
Hayes took $5000, in 1997, to participate in a sham marriage
to an Ethiopian immigrant – allowing him permanent residency in the U.S. Hayes’ action was a Federal felony. She was never prosecuted because the
information, reportedly, just recently surfaced. Hayes made a tearful confession for the media
saying that Kitzhaber never knew about the previous marriage. Yes, of course he didn’t.
Another recent report discovered that she was involved with
a “dangerous man” (her words) in an intended marijuana grow operation in
Washington – if discovered, at the time, another potential felony.
And, then, of course, there have been complaints to the
Oregon Government Ethics Commission that Hayes has used her close association
with the Governor to further her own questionable career. Complaints which, to no one’s particular surprise,
were largely determined to be unfounded.
What is that saying? ‘Birds
of a feather flock together.’
Bear with me. I will
get back to my blog theme very shortly.
Today, however, I had some outdoor projects to work on. My sidekick, Watson, kept busy trying to
unearth a mole. However, no luck. As you can see, his bath was to follow.
I don’t mean to be offensive or insensitive, as some will almost
certainly infer; but I don’t particularly like the way that ‘gay marriage’ has
been foisted upon the public. The Courts
have, again, gone off on one of their social-engineering tangents; which is, of
course, in the best interests of all of us in the public who they (the Judges)
believe are generally pretty bigoted and kind of ignorant. They know best; at least they believe they
know best – which is all that counts.
I hold no ill-will towards homosexuals. I think they deserve equal rights. But, quite frankly, I don’t believe the
homosexual community is, or will be, content with so called equal rights. I think gay marriage is more like laying the
groundwork for ‘minority status,’ as is now applied to racial minorities and,
in some instances, females. Society is
already leaning heavily in that direction on behalf of homosexuals and transsexuals. ‘Hate crimes,’ new hiring practices and other
legislation often pertains specifically to protections now guaranteed to homosexuals
– many in the name of the apparently innocuous concept ‘diversity.’ Caucasian (non-Hispanic), 'straight' males should be prepared
to get up off their flabby, white butts and move to the back of the bus.
It was interesting to note that the media has cited that
approximately 60% of Americans favor or have no objection to ‘gay marriage.’ That may be true – depending upon how the
question was worded. But, when 80 to 90%
of Americans could not name the three branches of the Federal Government, the
above referenced poll gives small comfort to whether or not the public really
understands the implications of ‘gay marriage.’
And, homosexuals, when they do marry (and this is largely
the fault of the media and its coverage) don’t seem to want to ease through the
door, and let the rest of us get used to the idea, they want to break down the
door and usurp all the widely practiced customs and traditions of heterosexual marriage
– kind of in your face, a get-used-to-it tactic.
A couple weeks back, a male television actor was being
interviewed and he referred to his partner as his husband. Does that bother anyone else – just me? Am I the only one who is just a bit taken-aback
by such comments? Many would say, this
is the new ‘normal.’ Well, the previous ‘normal’
was in place for hundreds, if not thousands of years, so this might take me a
I think we heterosexuals should organize a silent
protest. What do I have in mind? Well, if homosexuals want all the cultural
trappings of married life – so be it. We
need to be respectful and tolerant, but we don’t have to completely go
along. I suggest we ditch wedding rings
and terminology like wife and husband.
How about using the term ‘partner?’
Gays previously used the term, but they won’t need it anymore. Regarding wedding and engagement rings, take
them off, put them on a chain, and keep them close to your heart where they
actually belong. And, heterosexuals, if it’s really, really
important that you publicly advertise the fact that you’re married, how about getting a tattoo?
When I was in corporate security with a major company, I was
having dinner with one of the company’s facility managers. Nice guy.
He was asking me about my previous experience in the FBI; and the topic
of Margo St. James and prostitution came up.
He said that he wanted to ask me something – kind of personal.
He went on to say that his wife had, for the
most part, lost interest in sex – and, in fact, she never had much interest,
although they had conceived two children together. He said that about every six months he and
his wife would drive to Nevada and visit the casinos. In addition, they would usually take a drive to
one of the adjacent counties where prostitution is legal; and visit a business like
the Mustang Ranch. While his wife read a
book in the car, he would go inside and hire a prostitute. He asked me if I thought this was weird. Although at the time I did think that our conversation
had taken an odd turn, and that it was really more than I cared to know about
his personal life, I responded: “No, not
at all.” And, I was being truthful. If that arrangement was fine with his wife,
why would or should anyone else care?
And, why is most of the public, apparently, against
prostitution (sex exchanged for money), when it’s all around us in various
guises? I’m really not quite sure. Let’s be clear. I’m not referring to pimping, violence or exploiting
minors. I’m talking about two consenting
Oregon law reads as follows:
A person commits the
crime of prostitution if the person engages in, or offers or agrees to engage
in, sexual conduct or sexual contact in return for a fee.
A person commits the
crime of patronizing a prostitute if the person pays, or offers or agrees to
pay, a fee to engage in sexual conduct or sexual contact.
Both are misdemeanors under Oregon law.
Pretty straightforward description of what constitutes the
crime of ‘prostitution’ and ‘patronizing a prostitute,’ isn’t it? And, I might add, it’s very cleverly
worded. If, for example, you were to
remove the word ‘fee’ and replace it with the word ‘money’ or ‘gratuity’: well,
you can see the problems that might jump out.
You would have opened Pandora’s Box.
This could then apply to many marriages, cohabitating couples, girlfriends
and ‘one-night-stands.’ Unless the woman,
in such a relationship, could prove that she was self-supporting or did not actually
have sex with her partner, paramour or date; and if the more intimate
circumstances were to become known, than we might have a prima facie case for prostitution.
Said law, ambiguous at best, victimless perhaps, begs the
question; don’t our law enforcement agencies have something better to occupy
The folks in Tigard should pose that question to the Chief
This post is a continuation of my post of 9/29/14 (Prostitution / Everyone Has an Opinion /
Everyone is Wrong).
Margo St. James was the principal organizer of COYOTE (Call
Off Your Old Tired Ethics); which was considered to be, in late 70s San
Francisco, to be the prostitutes’ union (association).
I was an FBI Special Agent assigned to the Organized Crime
Squad in San Francisco. The Bureau, at
the time, expected all Agents to cultivate ‘sources’ that potentially could
have information of value to the FBI. It
was actually more than an expectation.
Part of an Agent’s performance evaluation was based on his ability to
establish mission-related sources-of-information in the local community or the
state. Margo was something of a Bay Area
celebrity with potentially all kinds of contacts, some with possible criminal
connections. I decided that I would
attempt to meet her.
I read everything I could find on Margo St. James relating
to her background, her current activities, and her expressed opinions. Having committed much of that information to
memory, I approached her at the offices of COYOTE. I showed her my credentials and introduced
myself. I had brought with me photos of
missing women and girls – a pretext of sorts.
San Francisco, in those days, was a magnet for girls and young
women. Pimps often roamed the bus
terminals looking for runaways and naïve young women seeking the hippy
lifestyle. And, as might be expected,
many young women simply disappeared; and more than a few ended-up as Jane Does
in the local morgues. When I first
contacted Margo, she seemed receptive to talking – apparently curious as to
what I was doing there. From that
initial contact, a somewhat friendly relationship gradually evolved.
As was customary (required in the Bureau), I formally opened
a file on Margo as a potential source.
This allowed me some protection against compromise, as well as allowed
me to buy her lunch on a few occasions – at Bureau expense. It should be understood that I never paid
Margo as an informant, nor would she have expected that.
Our meetings, unbeknownst to Margo, were monitored. For example, another Agent was always in
close proximity when I took Margo to lunch.
When I visited her, the other Agent waited discreetly outside,
monitoring my demeanor when I entered her offices, how long I was in there, and
my demeanor when I came out. Margo would
not have been above compromising an FBI Agent – and everything was done to
prevent that possibility. She once asked
me if I wanted to meet ‘a woman.’ “Just
describe her,” she said. “And I’ll have
her here in thirty minutes.” Was she
serious? She appeared to be. Although, I think her comment was meant more
as a test than an actual offer. If I had
showed the slightest interest in meeting a ‘working girl,’ she probably would
have quickly written me off as just one more sleazy cop on the ‘make.’ In her extensive career, I’m sure that she
had met a few. However, I made it clear that
she was the one I wanted to talk to; and she ultimately accepted that
arrangement. In retrospect, I think that
she welcomed, for what it’s worth, the possibility of having a perceived contact (a
source) in the Bureau.
What was Margo St. James like? It’s hard to describe. She was intelligent, articulate, interesting,
bizarre, outlandish, outspoken, profane and obscene. Everything I expected her to be, and then
some. No longer, at that point, a
practicing prostitute (to my knowledge), she described her early years, often
plying her trade dressed as a Catholic nun.
Apparently, according to her, this had a particular appeal to many
Unfortunately, our relationship ended when, under The Freedom of Information Act, she
requested any information the Bureau might possess on her. Ridiculous as this might sound, the
Bureau told her that she was currently a ‘source’ of Special Agent Nelson. Upon learning this information, she called me
and chewed-me-out, telling me in no uncertain terms that she wanted no further
contacts with me. That ended our
About a year after that, I resigned from the Bureau to
pursue other endeavors.
I have sometimes wondered if I owed Margo an apology. The status, as a ‘Bureau source,’ to which
she strongly stated her objection, must have smarted just a bit. It was, nonetheless, the only way I could justify
my association with her; and, furthermore, allow me to discuss with her the many
subjects that often had more to do with the protection of prostitutes and young
women from criminality, rather than the criminality of prostitution. Prostitution can be a dangerous, dirty
business, a magnet for crime and criminals; and it is especially dangerous for
young women or girls unfamiliar with all the aspects of the prostitution
business. In some respects, Margo and I
had similar goals. Anyway, in her own
way, she was quite the educator.
Regarding FBI ‘sources’ or ‘informants,’ many might have a
misconception as to how that works. The
FBI’s philosophy, at the time, was to have their Agents get out of the office,
get into the local community and cultivate contacts. Some might believe that the FBI only
developed relationships with members of organizations like the Mafia or the Hell’s Angels. This is, of course, sometimes possible and desirable,
but very rare. In attempting to gain
information about Mafia members’ activities or movements, an Agent might want
to build a relationship with someone close to a Mafia member, such as someone in
his family or someone who works in a restaurant he owns where money laundering
was suspected. With the Hell’s Angels,
who in the 70s were considered to be involved in several variations of
organized crime, someone who worked on their motorcycles might be a good
source. How so? Well, a motorcycle mechanic could furnish you
names, information on leadership, banking information, club member
As far as someone like Margo is concerned, it was a given
that participants in criminal activities also frequented prostitutes. For the Mafia, it was one of their passions.
Anyway, during the period that I knew her, she never gave me
any information that directly related to my cases, or organized crime with any
specificity. I came to doubt she knew
much about that sort of thing. We did,
occasionally, discuss lost or missing girls.
We discussed the prostitution business, and the reasons some women and
some men enter that business. When talking
about adults, who are not coerced in some manner to enter prostitution, Margo’s
description of the business was fairly straightforward and matter-of-fact. Some women like the trade, but most are there
for the money. She did, nonetheless,
acknowledge the many dangers involved.