Several bloggers including Echidne have pointed out the stupidity of the Freakonomics piece on prostitution. Working up outrage (over their utilitarian arguments re paying for sex) is difficult when faced with the Total Asperger Blinders of the authors: borderline autistic economists who don't insert "humanity" into their equations don't deserve a lot of 'analysis.' (Next up: the economy is down, so why aren't more parents eating their babies?) But my eye did catch this little jem:
Allie [a high-priced "escort"] says she is “a little more liberal” than some prostitutes when it comes to satisfying a client’s unusual request. There was, for instance, the fellow back in Texas who still flew her in regularly and asked her to incorporate some devices he kept in a briefcase in a session most people wouldn’t even recognize as sex per se.I've always been intrigued that if you are paying a woman to have sex with you, she's a prostitute, but if you are paying her to be filmed having sex with you, she's a porn star. And the second one is legal? Somehow, I don't see prostitutes carrying Flip Cams and calling themselves "actresses" having an impact on the prostitution debate.
And trust me, I'm down with the "prostitution is not a victimless crime" argument, completely and sympathetically. But how can you tell it's prostitution if what they do can't be recognized "as sex per se"? What if it's really just play acting for money? Look at what Jesus' General advised one wife to buy to 'turn on' her newly-sober and recently impotent husband:
What you need are things that excite a man. Go to town and get a trapeze, a sheepskin, a tube of carpet adhesive, a bag of pork rinds, a roll of duct tape, a ratchet (preferably a 10 inch flip lever tear drop with an 1/2 in. drive), and a copy of the abridged video version of Ayn Rand's "The Fountainhead."
So if a playdate with those items is what you're paying for? I defy anyone on God's green earth to call THAT prostitution.
And if you send a woman a plane ticket and she willingly gets on the plane to fly to you so you can "play" with said items, or even items that are more, ahem, titillating? No analyst can rightly call that rape, even if it gets them off to do so.
But hey, if you're playing, and you pull out the Hello Kitty fingerless biker gloves? Shit, dude, I'm having you arrested.
Shockingly Not A Photoshop. From Hot Chicks With Douchebags, which specializes in highlighting the objectified and oppressed womanhood of the Jersey Shore.