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The GFY Thread: “The Free Speech Coalition Why You Should NEVER send them money”

Mike South begins a thread on with this post:

I make no bones about being disgusted with the Free Speech Coalition. This is due to a number of reasons, including fiscal mismanagement and questionable use of membership money in the past which seems to be every bit as true today.

Did I nearly forget to mention that FSC takes credit for everything while doing nothing? Well let’s give them some credit here, shall we?

The FSC has had 3 Executive Directors in 3 years, and at the end of 2008 recently issued its 2007 Annual Report. The report was created by FSC International, an unfortunate choice in names but apparently an unaffiliated company out of San Gabriel. While the exact cost of the 4 page report (including cover) is unclear, industry professionals estimate it to be between $12,000 and $18,000 for a whole lot of nothing.

According to the report, the FSC took in nearly $1 million ($968,245) in revenues and paid out 85% of that to a bunch of vaguely named expenses which smack of slush funding for personal pampering.

Take for example the $300,000 paid for “Lobbying and alliance.” Their Washington D.C. lobbying firm The Raben Group (which has yet to do one God Damned thing except for take Executive Director Diane Duke around to some offices to make introductions), was paid a whopping $100,000 just on retainer. The FSC’s California lobbying firm Capital Alliance was paid $40,000 for the same year and they actually killed several pieces of legislation which attacked the industry.

Keep in mind that California is the single largest location for the nation’s adult entertainment industry. At the same time, California lawmakers have been attacking the industry with attempts to tax them out of existence, censoring material, excluding adult films from state grant money, prohibiting anyone under the age of 21 from performing nude, and more. But when the most important anti-piracy legislation came up, which would have protected the industry, the FSC did nothing.

On the federal level nothing has happened since 2257, and rumor has it that while the FSC is paying D.C. triple for doing nothing, it has lost the contract for its California lobbying firm and the FSC is ineligible for reconsideration. I’m just guessing but that usually means something really bad had to go down between them.

What happened to the remaining $160,000 that didn’t go towards lobbying? That was paid to some “alliance” efforts, such as pampering the jetsetting FSC crew and putting them up at luxury hotels every time they had to visit D.C., Sacramento, or San Francisco. Add to that the $114,180 spent on “Management and general” (a.k.a. staff retreats and luncheons) and we have at least 30% of their entire budget spent on nothing but fluff.

Then there is the payout of $114,180 for fundraising that brought in just $41,300 from fundraising events. Anyone who is willing to pay $2.50 to get $1 in return is stupid.

Another $144,269 is totally unaccounted for in the report. One thing is for sure, it isn’t going towards defending any of the industry leaders who are giving up their life’s saving in court to fight on behalf of all adult entertainers. The total amount spent by the FSC on legal issues was just $74,904—or less than 8% of the overall budget.

What was the total amount the FSC spent on things which provided absolutely no benefit to any of its members? About $700,000, or 2/3 of its entire budget.

No wonder the FSC membership numbers are in the toilet as people peel off and jump ship, because it is being driven into the ground by incompetence. The FSC should be disbanded at once and its management forever banished.


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