Subsidized prostitution

Progressives are much concerned with inequality of wealth, yet have little concern for inequality of social status, which arguably more important for happiness. One facet of this is inequality in access to sexual partners: there is a huge disparity between the number and quality of sexual partners of attractive vs. ugly women, and of high-status vs. loserly men. To be logically consistent, progressives should support policies to reduce sexual inequality, as long as they aren’t too coercive (no more than taxation is coercive).

Fortunately, we already have people who don’t have to be coerced to provide sex for a price - these are called prostitutes. Legalizing and subsidizing prostitution would be a highly “sexually progressive” policy - it would benefit low-status men and women much more than high-status men and women.

(It would also be lovely, and perfectly consistent with other strains of progressive thought, to levy a tax to pay for this that falls entirely on the beautiful and charming. Or to establish a Sex Stamps/Prostit-aid Bureau to coerce them into providing services to deserving citizens at below-“market” rates. After all, they happen to be blessed with gifts that nature hasn’t granted everyone. And their gifts wouldn’t be worth anything if society hadn’t provided them with an opportunity to make use of them. But one step at a time; let’s not get ahead of ourselves here.)

Lay off the eggnog. You’ve had enough.

Instead of a chicken in every pot, we could have a hooker and a dime bag of pot…


Progressives don’t think everyone should be equal in every way.

Conservatives are against premarital sex. They are really against poor people. To be logically consistent, all poor, unmarried people should have their genitals removed.

Of course everyone would be dead set against this in public, but with the secret ballot and all, I foresee a landslide victory for the “free hookers” candidate.

Yeah, 'cause they’d all be thinking of Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. Then they’d open the door and see their government issued toothless crack whore.

No they aren’t.

Nearly all prostitutes are coerced, or addicted. This is why in countries where prostitution is legalized, the vast majority of prostitutes continue to work illegally (not pay taxes, not register, not go in for medical screenings, etc.) And those who do work as a prostitute are nearly all regularly beaten, raped, and/or forced to become addicted to something.

Legalizing prostitution has historically and consistently increased the amount of illegal, unsafe, detrimental prostitution taking place. Illegalizing it has been shown to be effective at reducing all of this.

IMHO, the OP falls under the “too stupid for serious discussion” catergory. At best, it is a segway into a book report on Harrison Bergeron.

Do you have any cite for this? Because that is not my impression of how things are in Amsterdam.

Both income inequality and social status inequality are impacted by involuntary factors such as upbringing and genetics. So what’s the distinction? Is there a legitimate philosophical difference, or does it just come down to what groups we like (the deserving poor) and don’t like (the undeserving ugly)?

Prof. Hanson has more:

It has to do with the fact that you can’t legislate social status or measure it quantitatively, but can redistribute money and measure it quantitatively. They are quite different things.

Of course, in any decent socialized healthcare system access to a minimum level of sex is fundamental.

Come, athelas! :dubious:



Carry on.

Progressives’ concern is about inequality of opportunity and access to wealth, and to upward social mobility, not to “inequality of wealth,” per se. That’s just a typical, Limbaugh-stylke strawman.

Well; to nitpick slightly I do know a fair number who get concerned over the real extremes in inequality of wealth ( including me ). But you don’t need to get to the point where you light cigars with thousand dollar bills to pay for your own prostitutes.

athelas - Nobody cares about trying to reduce inequalities in physical appearance, vigor, charisma, personality, height, etc. because, quite simply, you can’t. What policies would you enact to make someone more attractive? Or more charismatic and personable? Or taller? People are born with a certain set of tools and attributes and it is up to them to use them to the best of their ability.

What people get upset about is when the system prevents them from competing for reasons that are irrelevant to what they are competing for. For example, preventing qualified students from attending college because of their skin color.

Nobody likes a wordsmith.

To elaborate, it’s more typical for a liberal (who has done any thinking) to be concerned about inequality of opportunity, rather than inequality of wealth.

To the OP, what do you mean by saying equality of “social status” is more conducive to happiness than equality of wealth? What would it mean for people to share the same “social status” with everyone else? Why would it make people happy?

I can’t see how this would possibly work, as the perception of valued sexual access depends on its availability, and availability would be a function of cost. If your government cheesecake is affordable enough for everyone to have a slice, then you don’t possess sexual access of any value. Conversely, if you price it high enough to keep it exclusive, then by nature this fails the progressive goal.

I’m not against legalized and regulated prostitution for other socially progressive reasons… I just don’t think it addresses social status at all.