Thursday, March 31, 2016

What About the Yacht Dwellers?

The New Hampshire Fiscal Policy Institute (NHFPI) recently released a report called, Taking the Measure of Need in the Granite State. NHPI looks at NH issues, and also examines problems with the federal poverty guidelines.

The poverty rate in NH is the lowest in the nation, at 9.2 percent. The federal poverty threshold was created in the 1960’s. At that time, a research showed that a family of three spent approximately one third of its budget on food.  After that, official poverty thresholds were created by multiplying the cost of a minimum food diet by three. Over time occasional adjustments have been made to account for inflation. In 1995, the Census Bureau created a supplemental poverty measure, which didn’t replace the poverty threshold, but exists to provide alternative information.

No adjustments have been made for the cost of housing. These days, housing costs account for upwards of two thirds of a poverty level budget. That’s another problem, the poverty threshold does not account for geographic differences in housing or other costs. As we all know, NH has some of the highest energy costs in the nation – as well as some of the highest property taxes and housing costs. Rent, day care, and health care costs combined make up at least half of the average working family’s budget.

The report finds that jobs in NH don’t match up with the cost of living. Only 30% of the jobs pay enough for a single parent with one child to have an “adequate” standard of living. The availability of those jobs depends greatly on where one resides in the state. The further north one travels, the more likely it is that the region is dependent on low wage service jobs. The cost of living does not decrease proportionally.

We all know that young people flee our state to avoid crushing student debt. We know they don’t come back because the employment prospects are limited and the exorbitant property taxes limit their ability to buy a house. There’s a shortage of rental property, so the rents are too damn high. We also know that many towns rely on volunteers to serve as firefighters and EMTs. This creates a conundrum in an aging population.

What are we doing about it? Well….nothing. We rely on volunteers to populate our legislature. Many of them are old and retired, and their sole interest is protecting their pensions. Some are businessmen whose sole interest is either passing or preventing legislation that applies to their businesses. Some are younger people who have no visible means of support. They generally do have a lot of expensive video equipment and plenty of weapons.

We are a state that lacks any kind of vision for the future. We live in and are legislated by the past.

Senator Jeb Bradley has been tweeting out lovely photos of his climbs up our 4000 footers in our various state parks. The same state parks we fund with user fees. NH is the only state that does it, because every other state was smart enough to realize that it doesn’t work. We are so miserly that we’ve created a mess. To fix the state parks would require a large infusion of cash. Our visionless legislature has been kicking the infrastructure can down the road for decades. You have only to drive down East Conway Road to see the results of that brilliant strategy. It would have been cheaper and smarter to keep up the maintenance of our roads and bridges all along, but that would have meant spending money, and we don’t do that here. As I’ve said far too many times – we prefer to pay the pound of cure. NH would rather amputate a limb than buy a band-aid.

The NH Senate will be voting on extending the NH Health Protection Plan (NHHPP) this week. Our Republican brethren don’t want to do it, because only people who can afford health insurance deserve it. The 50,000 low-wage workers in our state that are currently covered by the NHHPP apparently aren’t “deserving.” Greg Moore, the head of Americans for Prosperity in NH, was quoted at a hearing on the bill, as saying that “we aren’t getting a return on our investment,” when it comes to the NHHPP. The health of our residents isn’t worth investing in. It’s all about money for the Moores of the world. When everything has a price, nothing has any value.

Moore is a mouthpiece for the Koch Brothers, the funders of Americans for Prosperity. He was included in secret budget meetings last year. The Kochs aren’t creating any jobs here, other than Greg Moore’s. Luckily for the Kochs, we know that money is speech, and they get to speechify aplenty in a state where they have no investments other than AFP and the Free State Project.

The Senate is intent on attaching a work provision to the NHHPP. These are people who have been marinating in Reagan mythology for so long that they’re unable to accept reality. The welfare queen was a myth, and so is trickle down economics. When the NHHPP was first proposed, State Representatives Laurie Sanborn and Neal Kurk penned a letter to the editor 
that bemoaned the fact that “low income yacht dwellers” would be taking advantage of “free” health care. Has anyone found a low income yacht dweller in NH? The Republicans in our legislature believe that workers will quit their good paying jobs so that they can get “free” health care. Because that “free” health care will pay their rent and buy their groceries? These same legislators conveniently forget the fact that low-wage workers pay taxes. The same taxes that fund the NHHPP. 

The report from NHFPI shows that we use an outmoded tool to assess poverty, in a nation (and our state) where it is increasing. It’s difficult to imagine that this is an accident. The wealthiest country in the world doesn’t want to have accurate information about the poverty of its citizens, because that might require doing something about it. Right now, we’re more than content to blame that poverty on the poor.

published as an op-ed in the April 1 edition of the Conway Daily Sun 

Monday, March 28, 2016

Felonious Max Abramson Didn't Get the Memo

NH State Rep. Max Abramson (photo from

NH State Representative Max Abramson is a Republican from Seabrook. He's also a member of the Free State Project, the group of armed, libertarian/anarchist miscreants, who are moving to NH with the stated goal of taking over and dismantling the state government, then threatening secession. Since moving to NH, Abramson has distinguished himself by firing his gun at a party at his house in a residential neighborhood, which resulted in a felony conviction. He's also recently ingratiated himself with voters by coming to the defense of former House colleague Kyle Tasker, who was arrested for trying to arrange a sexual liason with a 14 year old girl over Facebook. 

This is from Abramson's personal FB page: 

Of course there is no such requirement, as anyone who bothered to do even a simple google search would discover. 

The libertarians who are invading our state love to tell us that they are all about live and let live - and live free or die. They support gay marriage! 

In The Economist  Free Staters try to take credit for the passing of NH's marriage equality law. What's especially amusing about this Economist piece is that Carol McGuire, whom they present as an FSP legislative darling, voted AGAINST marriage equality. 

One of the 101 Reasons to move to NH touted by the Free State Project is the fact that NH passed marriage equality. 

Apparently Felonious Max didn't get the memo that he's not supposed to be a public bigot. But hey, at least the FSP didn't kick him out of the FSP for publicly supporting a pedophile. At least not yet. As long as Max is in the legislature, he's useful to FSP, Inc. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

New, Corporate Free State Project Begins Cleaning House

Poor Ian Freeman.

Ian moved to NH in 2006, as part of the Free State Project. He bought a house and set up a studio for his radio show. In no time at all, he became the leader of the subset of the Free State Project cult, known as Free Keene.

He's relentlessly shilled for Free Keene and the Free State Project. He's also been a big embarrassment to the FSP. Any time there was an obnoxious story in the news about the FSP, it originated in Keene. The Free Keeners did a lot of embarrassing stuff. They drew penises on the sidewalks of Keene with chalk. They vandalized the war memorial. They pranced around with cameras, harassing meter readers. They smoked pot in the park every day at 4:20. SO edgy. They had topless protests. They were people with no visible means of support, who fed parking meters downtown and called their activism "work." Some of them kept getting arrested.

They weren't a good image. And Ian - well Ian's image was pretty tarnished. In 2010, on his radio show, he espoused the opinion that there doesn't need to be an age of consent for adults wanting to have sex with children.

There were grumblings about that over the years. I grumbled about it, here at my blog, in 2014.

Then came Kyle Tasker.  State Representative Kyle Tasker was arrested when he went to the meeting place he'd arranged over Facebook, for the purposes of having sex with a 14 year old girl.

Suddenly, sex with children is a topic of discussion in the state of NH. One of the first people to defend Kyle Tasker was Ian Freeman.  And again.

Ian wasn't the only Free Stater to defend Tasker in public. State Representative Max Abramson was quite vocal on social media and in the comment section at the Union Leader.

Meanwhile, the Free State Project has undergone a transformation. They're now officially a 501 (c)(3) non-profit. They were promoting a campaign for the last few years to "trigger the move." When the FSP reached the magic number of 20,000 signers, the trigger would be pulled (an apt analogy for the armed miscreants) and just like that they would suddenly appear.

The Free State Project began in 2001, when Jason Sorens wrote a rant about gathering like minded individuals to move to a state, take over and dismantle the government, then threaten to secede from the rest of the nation.  In 2001 they voted to move to NH.

Since then, the goalposts have shifted numerous times. They were all supposed to be here in 2006. Then they were all supposed to be here by 2010. It's 2016, and there are still fewer  than 2,000 of them here.

But, Trigger the Move was good PR. They got tons of publicity, and one thing Free Staters love is publicity. Even the mainstream media began showing up at their big events like Porcfest and Liberty Forum. President Carla Gericke was a relentless media hound. She sued the town of Weare. She shrieked and sobbed at the City of Concord when they wanted to buy a Bearcat armored vehicle. She was a necessary figurehead for the FSP, given that libertarian groups are populated by mostly men, and those men are of a somewhat misogynistic persuasion. Having a very visible female figure at the helm was a way of eliminating the discussion of libertarian misogyny.

Carla Gericke, former FSP President 

The move was triggered. And suddenly everything changed. Carla was kicked upstairs, and given a position on the board. Her image wasn't right for the new improved FSP. Millionaire businessman and NH-come-lately, Matt Phillips is the new president of the FSP. He moved to NH in 2014. Matt was an intern at the CATO Institute with Jason Sorens. The Koch funded CATO institute. Also on the board are Aaron Day - an entrepreneur and venture capitalist, businessman Rich Goldman, scientist and management consultant Séamas Ó Scalaidhe, and Jason Sorens who is currently on faculty at Dartmouth. He moved to NH in 2013. There are two women on the board: Carla Gericke and Jody Underwood. Mrs. Underwood is a farmer in Croyden, and likes to dance! Carla likes cooking, hiking, and yoga! 

It seems that the FSP is triggering an entirely different sort of move - a move away from scruffy potheads and sidewalk chalkers - a move toward business suit wearing legitimacy. They don't want to be labeled as "fringe" or "cult" any longer. Nope, they're going full on libertarian corporate. The irony is delicious. 

Carla Gericke, Jason Sorens, and Matt Phillips 

Back to Ian Freeman. Adult men advocating sex with children is not respectable or legitimate. The reaction to Kyle Tasker's attempts to solicit sex with 14 year old girls horrified most residents of our state. It happened at the same time the FSP is making their bid toward becoming FSP Inc. Ian's been an embarrassment for years, and suddenly, they have the means to ditch him. The FSP announced that they were severing ties with Ian's media empire, and that he was not welcome to appear at FSP events. He resigned from the FSP shortly thereafter. And right after all that, the FBI raided the Church of the Free Load and took a boatload of computers and electronic devices.  The new story in the media is that Ian was expelled from the FSP, just as his buddy Chris Cantwell was expelled a few years ago. Both of them were victims of political expedience. Cantwell started making noise about how he thought killing police officers was a wonderful thing at the very same time Carla Gericke started shrieking in public about the Concord Bearcat. The Concord police chief called the FSP potential domestic terrorists on his application. The LAST thing they needed was for the media to discover that Cantwell was proving the chief right. So, they made a big public show of expelling him. Ian became a liability long ago - he just provided the FSP with an opportunity at exactly the right time, thanks to Kyle Tasker. I suspect we'll see more FSP house cleaning in the weeks and months ahead. 

I can't help but feel badly for Ian. He's worked hard to put the FSP on the map for the last 10 years. He's been used and very publicly
cast aside by the very people he worked with and trusted. 

Friday, March 18, 2016

Updates on the Delusional

Last week, the NH House had a marathon 2-day voting session that dealt with 500 bills. The sessions began at 9 am. On Thursday (day 2) afternoon the Sergeant–at-Arms was instructed to lock everyone in, in order to keep a quorum. The House sessions are live-streamed, so I was able to watch some of the evening sessions. A stranger to NH would never have realized that NH has serious infrastructure problems, including 300+ bridges on the red list for structural impairments. They would never have known that our tax system is a disaster, causing young people to flee our state, because they can’t afford to buy houses – and old people to flee the state, because they can’t afford to keep their houses. That stranger would have thought that guns and abortion were the most pressing issues in our state.

There were a dozen abortion related bills. Not one of them was written by anyone with even a scrid of medical competency, but all were written by men. These are men who bray about the “nanny state” when it comes to their own lives. Nanny state good for women. By far, the most disturbing speaker was Rep. Warren Groen from Rochester. Readers may recall Groen from the red tailed hawk incident last year. He was the one who felt compelled to give 4th graders visiting the legislature a lesson in abortion from the House floor. Listening to him describe abortion, even with flat affect, it seemed that for him, this is a near pornographic turn on. It was disturbing.

As we know, the NH Republican party has been hijacked by a roiling mix of Tea Partiers, Free Staters, and John Birchers. The results of this takeover are increasingly obvious, as we see in the events of the last two weeks. State Representative Kyle Tasker, a Republican from Nottingham, was arrested recently for trying to solicit sex from a 14 year old over the internet. The 14 year old proved to be a cop. Tasker sent her texts to set up a meeting while he was at a committee hearing. He served on the Child and Family Law committee. His house was full of drugs and guns, and he was armed when he went to meet up with the 14 year old. Would he have forced himself on her at gunpoint? We will never know. Most of his colleagues in the legislature were appalled by his actions, but Rep. Max Abramson, a Free Stater from Seabrook has repeatedly insisted that Tasker was set up. One wonders how the voters in Abramson’s district feel about his public defense of a 30 year old man trying to arrange sex with a 14 year old. Before he could be expelled, Tasker resigned. There were plenty of warning signs that he was a loose cannon, but they were ignored, and now everyone claims horrified surprise.

Next, Jerry DeLemus, (former GOP candidate for “Constitutional Sheriff”) from Rochester, was arrested by the feds for his role in the Bundy ranch debacle.  It seems the feds didn’t take kindly to a bunch of armed yahoos pointing their weapons at law enforcement, and finally decided to prosecute. There is much bleating from his supporters about “federal land grabs.” Cliven Bundy is a moocher who wasn’t paying the extraordinarily low grazing fees he is assessed for allowing his cattle to graze on public lands. That was the issue and it had nothing to do with land grabs, or Jerry DeLemus, for that matter. He seized the opportunity to ride out to the Bundy ranch with his sniper rifle, which he stopped to have sighted along the way. We are now expected to believe he was there as a “peacemaker.” There are 9 federal charges against DeLemus, who also went out to the Bundy occupation of the Malheur Wildlife Sanctuary in Oregon. Where there are guns and cameras, there is Jerry DeLemus. His wife, Susan, is a state representative, who recently was in the news for referring to Pope Francis as “the anti-Christ.” Rochester.

Republican State Representative Don Leeman of Rochester (where else?) moved out of the ward that elected him to the legislature, in December. He went back to the House in January and told no one. On February 9, he voted in the NH primary – in his old district – the one he didn’t live in any more. That was noticed. An inquiry began. The House Legislative Administration committee found that he didn’t live in his district any longer; therefore he wasn’t qualified to be a representative any longer. Leeman sauntered in with a note from his new landlord, saying he was moving back into the district he’d vacated months earlier, and Speaker Jasper allowed him to stay. This is the very same Republican Party that continually howls about voter fraud. Yet (as we’ve seen before) when one of their own commits it they get whiplash looking the other way. The Union Leader congratulated Leeman on keeping his seat. The NH Republican Party has forfeited the right to ever say another word about voter fraud in this state.

There are signs of an attempt by residents of some towns to stem the tide of reactionary politics. The towns of Rollinsford, Bow, and Dunbarton all voted against eliminating town meeting in favor of SB2. Rollinsford and Dunbarton both voted against a tax cap. Dunbarton voted to hire a part time clerk. Last year they eliminated the position, and everyone in town got a hard lesson in the reality that there’s a lot more to the job of the town clerk than motor vehicle registrations. My favorite town meeting story this year comes from Dunbarton, where a state legislator was running unopposed for the position of town moderator. The town had a candidate’s night on the Saturday before town meeting. The candidate appeared with his sidearm attached. A voter asked if he’d be moderating with a gun, and he said he always wears it. The people in attendance decided they did not want a moderator at the podium with a gun, so they drafted another candidate, and launched a write-in campaign. The write-in candidate won. JR Hoell lost while running unopposed.

As for what’s going on nationally – President Trump is certainly what we deserve, though I don’t think we’re going to like it very much.

published as an op-ed in the March 18 issue of the Conway Daily Sun newspaper

Wednesday, March 09, 2016

NH GOP Rep Commits Voter Fraud, Keeps House Seat

A month ago, there was a story in Fosters  about NH State Representative Don Leeman. The pertinent facts:

In December he moved out of the district that elected him. He continued to serve in the legislature. In February he voted in the district that elected him - NOT  the district where he lived. In March, the Legislative Administration committee determined that he was no longer qualified to represent his district, since he didn't live there any more.  

Leeman gave Speaker Shawn Jasper a note from his new, temp landlord on Tuesday, and today, according to  Fosters  the committee report saying Leeman wasn't qualified to serve was tabled, and he gets to keep his seat. 

Let's review, shall we?

Leeman moved in December. 

He went back to the legislature in January, and continued to serve, without telling anyone that he had moved. 

Leeman went to the polls on February 9, to participate in the first in the nation primary. 

He went to the polls in a district that he did not live in and voted. 

He committed election fraud. 

He committed voter fraud. 

And today, he was allowed to keep his seat in the NH House.

I do not want to hear a single word, EVER, from NH Republicans about voter fraud.  

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Kyle Tasker: Age of Consent Activist

Liberty Activist! 

Tea Party Activist! 

Constitutional Activist! 

Anyone care to speculate what any of these media sources would be saying about a person of color arrested for pointing guns at federal agents? WMUR was very kindly even doing turnout for his court hearing.

Compare and contrast with the way State Representative Kyle Tasker is being treated by NH media:

If Jerry DeLemus is being called a "liberty activist" by the NH media, shouldn't they be calling Kyle Tasker an "age of consent activist?" 

NH Media Silent on GOP Election Fraud

                                    NH State Rep. Don Leeman of Rochester, NH (h/t miscellany blue for photo)

After the NH Primary, there was a small, quiet story in the news. From Fosters:

A local state representative’s voting location has sparked an investigation from the state’s Attorney General.
Deputy Secretary of State Dave Scanlan confirmed on Wednesday that the Attorney General’s office is looking into whether State Rep. Don Leeman, R-Rochester, violated any state laws by voting in the recent N.H. presidential primary election in a district in which he is temporarily no longer living.

Scanlan said a person intentionally voting in the wrong polling place faces a “range of potential ramifications, anything from civil fine to criminal prosecution.”

This wasn't a big story. You didn't see it splashed across the front page of the UL. You didn't see it covered on WMUR. When a Republican State Representative commits voter fraud, the NH media is silent. 

Some of the bills Don Leeman sponsored this session:

HB 1425  restricting the use of food stamps in convenience stores. He wanted to allow only milk to be purchased in convenience stores with SNAP benefits. He told the committee he thinks people could get more for their money at supermarkets. No word on whether he was planning to give them rides. 

HB 1542  Requiring drug testing of public assistance recipients. Because obviously, anyone receiving public assistance is on drugs. As we all know, this has cost other states a fortune, and saved them nothing. 

HB 1629  Disqualifying members of certain groups from receiving public assistance. This would add a checkbox to forms so that people who are members of foreign terrorist groups could self-sort themselves out of getting any kind of public assistance in the US. It also provided a helpful "fink" provision that would enable residents to turn in anyone they thought was a terrorist, and potentially get a reward. 

It seems Leeman was deeply concerned with uncovering fraud. Except, of course, when he was committing it himself. Then it was justified. Leeman should be charged with election fraud, and voter fraud. 

He is now on the verge of being a former State Representative. The House Legislative Administration Committee has made this determination:

The committee, as part of this report undertook to answer two questions. 1) Is the member an inhabitant of the district to which he was elected? 2) Is the member qualified to continue to represent the district to which he was elected? The committee agreed, unanimously, that the answer to both questions was no. Representative Leeman can no longer serve as a member of the New Hampshire House because he has constitutionally disqualified himself. 

All of this without a whisper from the NH media. 

According to Fosters today:

Should the House vote Leeman is no longer qualified, his seat would be vacated immediately, Rivers said.
Leeman said he had appeared before the committee on Tuesday and was confident he would not be voted out of his seat. He said Tuesday he had spoken to the Speaker of the House, and that "we have a resolution to the whole thing."

A resolution? He moved out of his district, then voted in it anyway in an attempt to pull the wool over the eyes of his constituents, so he could keep his seat. 

If they vote to keep him, the NH GOP should STFU about voter fraud, now and forever.  

Thursday, March 03, 2016

Pass The Fruit Salad

Those of us who watched the last Republican debate learned a few things about the men who would be president. Dr. Carson, when asked how he would choose a nominee for the Supreme Court said he would look at the fruit salad of their lives. He may be brilliant in an operating room, but the rest of the time he appears to exist in a rather lizard-like torpor. That said, at least (unlike most of his fellow candidates) he can act like a grown up in public.

You may have seen the moment where things REALLY went to hell. That was when the person doing the closed captions abandoned all hope and just put, “unintelligible yelling” on the screen. The men who wish to convince us that they are the right candidate to lead our nation (and handle the nuclear launch codes) were engaging in what looked slightly less mannerly than a 3rd grade playground fight.

This is where the party of Reagan has led us. Lo these many years, we’ve been hearing that gummint is bad, and gummint is the problem, and we’ve elected people who ensured that it was so. They invited the ill-behaved louts of the Tea Party into their bosom, and the Tea Partiers showed their appreciation by taking over the party, and kicking out anyone who retained any vestiges of sanity or reasonable behavior. NH followed right along. Since then, we’ve watched as a variety of churls shouted down Congresswomen at town hall meetings. We’ve seen them behave badly in the legislature, and everywhere else they go. Recently the Carroll County Commissioners had to deal with an outburst by a Wakefield resident. Steve Brown has been an ongoing problem at the meetings. He’s a libertea guy and like so many of his ilk, he is the center of the universe. He is all that exists, and he has the right…nae the DUTY to say or do whatever crosses his mind at any given moment. And so, when he was caught on tape simulating masturbation, the members of the Commission decided that perhaps Mr. Brown should be compelled to develop some impulse control, and that the Commission and others present, should not be subjected to his lack of propriety and courtesy. Brown is a member of the Wakefield School Board. Hopefully children don’t attend the meetings. 

This week, Marco Rubio (a candidate for President of the United States) made penis jokes about Donald Trump (a candidate for President of the United States.) Also this week, the NH House Criminal Justice and Pubic Safety Committee had a public hearing on HB 1525: relative to the circumstances that constitute indecent exposure and lewdness.  This bill was written in response to the topless protests held last summer at Hampton Beach. A group of women didn’t think their bodies should be considered obscene, and espoused the view that they should be able to go topless at the beach. This is also the bill that caused a dust-up back in December, when one of the original sponsors, Rep. Josh Moore, tweeted at a female colleague his opinion that a nipple out in view was fair game for grabbing. Rep. Moore has since removed himself from the bill. It’s worth noting that Rep. Moore is a member of the House Education Committee. The bill would make it a misdemeanor for a woman to show her breasts or nipples “with reckless disregard” for whether it would offend someone.

The current sponsors of the bill are Representative Brian Gallagher, a freshman legislator from Sanbornton; Rep. Peter Spanos, a freshman legislator from Winnisquam; and Rep. George Hurt, in his third term, from Gilford. All are Republicans. At the hearing, these men warned the committee that if women can go topless at the beach, they’d soon be topless at the library and at Little League games. (Do these guys ever even go to the library?) They said that NH could lose tourism dollars if women wander around in public with exposed breasts. Good point. No one goes to Europe any more. All those topless beaches keep everyone away. One hopes these tender legislative blossoms avoid Weirs Beach during Bike Week.

It’s almost amusing. Breasts are used to sell nearly every product on the market – but heaven forfend you should see one at the beach! Men spend their whole lives trying to catch a peek at them yet now they’re all boogered up about the idea of seeing an uncovered gland in public. The underlying message here is that women’s bodies are obscene and must be covered. Women are perverts who will flaunt their dirtypillows at the library! Women’s filthy bodies will drive away tourists! Keep those reckless breasts under control! What a wonderful message these men are sending to their own daughters and granddaughters. Perhaps next year all their daughters can wear festive holiday burkas for the family Christmas card.

On the one hand, we have Republican male presidential candidates making rude comments and jokes, and male Republican elected officials simulating masturbation at public meetings. On the other hand we have Republican male legislators who are so offended by women’s bodies that they want to make it a crime to show a breast in public.  Seriously?  It sounds to me, as if you boys need to clean up your own side of the street before you try anything big like governing.

What we ought to do is take a cue from the Italians. Topless sunbathing is a matter of choice in Italy. It is, however, against the law for men to touch their genitals in public. Italian men do not paw at, grope, grab, or tug at their crotches in public. This law was upheld by Italy’s highest court. From The Guardian: The third penal division of the Rome court was having none of it. It said that public genital-patting "has to be regarded as an act contrary to public decency, a concept including that nexus of socio-ethical behavioural rules requiring everyone to abstain from conduct potentially offensive to collectively-held feelings of decorum".

That’s right. Men’s grabbing at their private parts is an act contrary to public decency – not the showing of a nipple.
Next year perhaps a bold legislator will write THIS bill. The women of the nation (and many men) will thank you.

Published as an op-ed in the March 4 edition of the Conway Daily Sun newspaper