By David Tulis
EPB is the city’s electric utility engaged in the for-profit business of selling pornography through its telecom division. The 2014 earnings from this ribald public service is a meager F$101,080 and for a business with operating revenues of more than half a billion dollars (F$625.49 million in 2013), that’s chump change.
Porn in the digital era is a great universal, the ever-present wink for people online who, in a moment of weakness, click to scenes of nudity, compulsion and sexual instinct, where the animal comes out in men, where men without limit exercise of their desires.
Porn reduces women and men depicted and those who watch to licentious beings seeking their own gratification, or pretending to. Productions such as “12 inches of thick black stick” and “Deep in your wife” and “Orgy overload” eliminate distinctions taught by Christianity. They belittle honor, make nothing of promises and vows that make lovemaking the province of those in lawful marriage, exclusive of all others. Porn pretends to be democratic. Every man can have every woman, whenever and wherever yearning builds and compels him in heat.
For public purpose, we creep upon your land
EPB is a government agency, a wholly owned division of city government authorized in Title 10 of the city charter. One of its powers is eminent domain, the “inherent power of a governmental entity to take privately owned property, esp. land, and convert it to public use, subject to reasonable compensation for the taking,” as Black’s Law Dictionary puts it.
The key requirement is that there be a public benefit or purpose to the seizure. Eminent domain is not intended for private gain or profit.
In Chattanooga, EPB seizes land in that of a great name: “The title to all property taken for the purpose of exercising the powers conferred by this act whether acquired by contract or by exercise of the power of eminent domain, shall be taken in the name of the City of Chattanooga, Tennessee; and such condemnation proceedings as may be deemed necessary or proper shall be pursuant to and in accordance” with the Tennessee Code Annotated provisions for public seizure proceedings.
EPB is a part of the city’s executive branch, meaning its board answers to the mayor.
Under Andy Berke’s authority, the city’s profitable utility company sells pornography in a sort of eminent domain upon marriage. His entertaining program is a seizure of a private activity — sexual relations reserved for lawful marriage — and having that private act put on a public bed, in a window, like those glittering at the EPB building downtown where Christmas displays are enjoyed by passing moms and dads with children.
The sale of porn by board members Joe Ferguson, Warren Logan, John Foy, Vicky Gregg and Jon Kinsey is a sort of trespass against the form and substance of marriage and the family.
In municipal eminent domain, EPB disseizes a family of its house, a store of its parking lot or a farm of its pastureland for a public good. Pornography defrauds customers of the state of contentment, that with which married men are to enjoy being married, and that with which single men (and women) are to happily accept their state outside of marriage.
Takings, yes, but any making good?
Pornography is a moral trespass against the vow of fidelity a man makes to his wife and with his own heart and eyes. EPB’s porn menu feeds private covetings, nourishes gallant fantasies of the all-capable and all-powerful lover. EPB’s smut culture knows no limits, tolerates no delay, smashes aside all coyness and hesitancy, gets right down to business, like the wrecking ball clearing away the family house for a new substation or strip mall.
Problem is, where is the reasonable compensation for the takings?
— David Tulis hosts Nooganomics.com 1 to 3 p.m. weekdays at Hot News Talk Radio 1240 1190 910 AM, covering local economy and free markets in Chattanooga and beyond.