Oracle of Liberty

Constitutional Liberty and Economic Common Sense

Economic liberty, Prostitution and the War on Women


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A friend of mine recently brought to my attention something that I have never thought about but that puts an age old myth most of us believe to rest. Prostitution is NOT the “oldest profession”. It can’t be. How do we know this? Well, a “profession” is defined as “a vocation requiring knowledge of some department of learning or science, or any vocation or business”. The other definitions have more to do with religious faith, and other than loudly and exhaustively calling out various names of the trinity as a means for both supplier and receiver to know the business at hand is about to be closed and satisfied per the contract, one hardly believes that prostitution meets that definition of “profession”. Further, “professional” derives from the root word profession and is defined as “a person who earns a living in a sport or other occupation frequently engaged in by amateurs”. Therefore it holds that if prostitution is deemed a profession then study and expertise are required. But to be a professional then earning an income in that chosen line of work is the essential make up that defines a professions existence. And not many would be supportive of the argument that there is a science to prostitution. However, if the prostitute offers services with no exchange of property or collateral in return then she would be deemed a non-profit, or charity. And those are considered professions. Hmmm. So maybe the myth holds true after all…not so fast!

Now if that prostitute offers her services for free to a willing customer in return for her receiving a meal, drinks, or possibly a place of rest and comfort for the night then these potentially expensive “gifts” she would receive could be seen as earning income. And as such, commerce would have taken place. But then, wouldn’t we really call her what she is? A whore. Of course, if earning an income is the essential part of a profession then in order for the prostitute to have earned an income doesn’t that provide that the exchange of money could only have taken place if the person paying for the services of a woman would have to have earned money in his profession or vocation? If so, then I would venture to say that either being a farmer, a hunter or seamstress is likely the ‘oldest profession’ in the world. And since apparently, until this blog was written to clearly squelch this myth once and for all, we can say that it was likely the farmer or hunter who first earned income or collateral by which to pay for the services of said prostitute. Making his profession the oldest. There, now since that is put to rest lets move on.

But I digress. The point in discussing this topic is to demonstrate that prostitution is a mere byproduct of a free market system whereby excess money or collateral, a consumer demand, a supply to meet demand and commerce take place. Whether prostitution is regarded as immoral or right is not for this particular blogpost to consider. Rather, we are merely demonstrating that if person A sees that a particular demand is short of supply and wishes to capitalize on that distortion by providing the product to person B, and A believes that an income can be earned then that is the place for the free market to decide its worthiness to succeed. For centuries it has worked precisely this way and for centuries it will continue. Many will remark, “but prostitution is illegal” And while it, in fact, is illegal on the books today its being so has more to do with the taboo and ‘feared risk to others’ more so than because it is actually harmful for the person providing the supply or the customer receiving it. Again, the complexity that some would wish to delve into here is outside the scope of why it is being written about. Pimps, guns, drugs, etc., are all things argued for keeping it illegal. But why? The same could be said of industries including banking, pharmaceutical, tobacco, liquor, etc. Those are not illegal yet still embody all the things that others state as why prostitution should be kept illegal.

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We now regulate/mandate through government control of everything from inoculations of our children, their education, how many mpg’s our cars must occupy and the fuel required to fill the tanks, the extent of rainwater retention in our yards, how much in taxes we pay, to equal pay for equal work and now our own healthcare choices. In keeping with this stream of consciousness, shouldn’t it then hold that it is becoming more difficult to act legally vs illegally?

In closing, what should women be focused on, especially liberal women hellbent on keeping government bureaucrats away from their bodies and the choices they make (Sandra Fluke are you reading?)? I contend that if a woman’s right to choose what she does or doesn’t do with her body is what she wants then by all means stand up on this issue and demand social justice. Women are being held back from progressing forward. I mean, really if law allows the woman the right to kill another human being (one of course she can’t yet transact with because that would fall under the ‘statutory’ legal code), shouldn’t she make her own choice on her profession. Or is this a classic case of lawmakers, mostly from the left, dictating what a woman has the right to do not only with her body but also in the choice she makes for what profession or vocation she forges ahead with after school?

And, I can guaranty you that if a woman wants to eclipse a man in the ‘equal pay for equal work’ arena then prostitution is surely where they reign supreme and would dominate. So why then make it illegal? It’s consensual. It’s supply and demand. It’s commerce. It’s liberty and freedom to its optimal degree. And the pro big-government types should love it because they could then tax it. Literally, every liberal progressive across the country should be flooding their congress person with calls and emails to bring a bill to the floor of the house to overturn such arcane and sexist laws. While you are at it push for marijuana to be legal for the exact same reasons mentioned above and you could get a twofer and thus a huge win for true Liberty, and liberal causes. The grand prize? The freedom to make your own choices, free of government intervention, resulting in the general satisfaction of both parties and to live with the resulting consequences of those actions. But one must always consider that actions that impede on one’s moral code has the darkest of consequences. However, it should not be the government’s role to keep you away from harming yourself. It should be your right to harm yourself even if you are not partaking in the mythical oldest profession in the world.

Prostitution embodies to the letter what the Founders wrote in the Declaration of Independence when they said “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness”.

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