So Playboy is becoming proudly birthday-suit free. Lots of jokes this week about how guys will now be able to honestly say “I only read it for the articles.” From 1994 through 2002, I wrote a bunch of pieces for Playboy on No-Knock Raids, Ruby Ridge, Waco, Janet Reno, IRS, Surveillance, Pork Barrel Prisons, the Drug War, AmeriCorps, the Patriot Act, and a bunch of other topics. My editor was Jim Petersen – one of the sharpest wordsmiths and most principled editors I have had the pleasure of knowing.
Most of the articles dealt with political & bureaucratic obscenities. Admittedly, a few of the illustrations were zesty and some of my exchanges in the magazine with hostile critics got more explicit. My favorite retort involved wheedling in a reference to Philadelphia furniture in response to an indignant Princeton philosopher whose book I had flailed.
Below are links to the text of most of my Playboy pieces.
“Drug Courier Profiles,” Playboy, November 1994.
“Oops – You’re Dead! No-Knock Raids,” Playboy, December 1994.
“Informants – Uncle Scam wants you,” Playboy, March 1995.
“Overkill – Ruby Ridge,” Playboy, June 1995.
“Asset Forfeiture: Uncle Sam wants your stuff,” Playboy, October 1995.
“No-knock victory; U.S Supreme Court ruling on police raids,” Playboy, October 1995.
“Zoning: Conform … or else,” Playboy, March 1996.
“Zoning vs. The First Amendment,” Playboy, March 1996.
“IRS: Stand and Deliver,” Playboy, April 1996.
“Blown Away: Supreme Court Asset Forfeiture Ruling,” Playboy, August 1996.
“Know your banker: he may be working for big brother,” Playboy, December 1996.
“Prison sentences of the politically connected,” Playboy, April 1997.
“The return of the Hitler youth?” Playboy, November 1997.
“Time out for justice: why talking about drugs is worse than murder,” Playboy, December 1997.
“The Firing Range; FBI actions at Ruby Ridge, Idaho,” Playboy, October, 1998.
“Asset Forfeiture: The King’s Riches -when does a fine become excessive?” Playboy, December 1998.
“Ken Starr’s Greatest Hits,” Playboy, March 1999.
“Beyond Perjury,” Playboy, May 1999.
“Attention Deficit Democracy,” Playboy, June 1999.
“When You Put A Price Tag On Freedom, Guess Who Pays,” Playboy, October 1999.
“Janet Reno, Whitewash Queen,” Playboy, February 2000.
“Flash Bang – You’re Dead,” Playboy, March 2000
“Officer Laptop : do we really need more cops?” Playboy, August 2000.
“Feeling Your Pain: Abuse of the Americans with Disabilities Act,” Playboy, October 2000.
“Drug Czar Wanted,” Playboy, March 2001.
“Snowjob – Drug Warrior Corruption,” Playboy, March 2001.
“Killer Cops,” Playboy, December 2001.
“Pork Barrel Prisons,” Playboy, February 2002.
“Patriot Act: Terrorizing the Bill of Rights,” Playboy, April 2002.
Jim, did you have to do a bunch of nude photo shoots for Hugh before he let you write articles?
It’s great that they published all that stuff – looking over the titles, it looks like virtually all of
these issues are still with us now.
I would have volunteered to take nude photo shoots – I enjoy playing with cameras – but that never up.
Playboy was great to work with for that stretch of years. Yes, those issues are still with us — which does make writing about them seem like barking at the moon. What the hell – I enjoy barking.