My friend and occasional correspondent, Ira Goldman, has a somewhat droll sense of humor. When President Obama and the Democratic congress created the “Cash for Clunkers” program as an “economic stimulus”, Ira sent me a series of e-mails containing a list of other, increasingly ridiculous, suggestions for “Cash for …” programs on which the government might be able to waste money. Among his nominations was one — Cash for Hookers — that, for some (perverse?) reason sent me spiraling down a thought hole. This was my reply to him.
11 August 2009
But the second one [Cash for Hookers], while funny, misses the point. We are supposed to be spending cash to eliminate things that some (suitably enlightened) powers-that-be have deemed to be socially unacceptable or to encourage things that the same set of demi-gods have deemed to be socially worthwhile. Even liberals don’t accept that hooking is socially worthwhile.
Or have I misunderstood? Is it not having sex that is socially unwholesome? Is this intended to solve the not having sex problem? In that case, it’s not Cash for Hookers at all. It’s really Cash for Self-Control — turn in your self-control on a new hedonism and we’ll give you cash to subsidize it!
Now there’s a plan to support!
Aside: I say that even liberals don’t think prostitution is socially worthwhile — in fact, they (especially the feminist variety) often condemn it. What is the message there?
Prostitution = sex as commerce
Liberals like sex — in fact, they think we should see it everywhere and be happy, and woe be to any prude who suggests it may sometimes be unwholesome or ought to be inconspicuous!
So why the aversion to prostitution? Oh, yeah…. It’s because they think commerce is sinful!
Prostitution may be the perfect metaphor for our current insane political divisions:
Conservatives are against it because they think sex is a sin
Liberals are against it because they think commerce is a sin
It’s the one thing on which everyone can agree!
© Copyright 2009, Augustus P. Lowell