Is Prostitution Neccessarily Bad?


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The other thread on the nature of "evil" got me thinking in a few different directions. Particularly on so- called "victimless crimes".

Prostitition, according to Objectivist doctrine, is considered bad, but legally acceptable. The rationale being prostitution (or any money-for-sex relationships) is "faking reality" on part of both the prosittute and the john. Sex, according to Objectivism, is held to be an exclusive good between two mutually valued partners, and money-for-sex arrangements are morally offensive.

But let me ask you a question: is the crappily paid McDonalds worker who orders your food "faking reality" when she makes a smile she forced to make in order to please her customers and keep her job?

Honestly, it's really no different for most prostitutes. It's a job and means of making his/her living. In most cases it's a woman (90% maybe) due to the economics of the demand for sex (always more favorable to women than men). Is she "wrong" for capitalising on this imbalance, while allowing herself to make a living and make men who otherwise could not access sex less frustrated and needy?

Furthermore, most male/female relationships always have some elements of a financial transaction, whether explicit or implicit. This has been the case throughout all of human history and in all cultures. Taking girls out to dinner, divorce settlements, alimony payments, dowrys, wedding rings, etc,. are all elements of "normal" financial transactions in so called "normal" relationships, but somehow, these transactions are not frowned upon?

If a man A marries a woman for 7 years, afterwards they get a nasty divorce, he pays her a $500,000 divorce settlement plus $40,000 a year in alimony. Meanwhile man B pays a prositute $300 an hour for sex, over the course of seven years this adds up to $50,540 (24 partners a year). Who made the more "rational" decision? Or man B pays his beautiful, young, model mistress $2000 a month for 4 years, after which they part ways amicably. No alimony, no settlements.

Is man B somehow "worse off" because he did'nt get married? Is man A morally superior to man B when there were clearly "financial transactions" in both scenarios?

IMO there is no good reason one way or another to declare prostitution a "moral evil" at all. Comments?

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Reminds me of the Playboy centerfold twins who were being kept by an old rich guy. He gave each of them a Mercedes 450 convertible, apartments, pocket money. Of course that was back in remote past when I was young and handsome and attractive to centerfold twins.

Around the same time in Hollywood, a sad middle aged actress explained that men divorce and remarry to get ahead in show business. Another, wealthier middle aged girlfriend said she was a good housekeeper -- married three times, divorced them and kept the houses.

Truth is stranger than fiction. You can't make this stuff up.

Which reminds me of one of my younger brothers, who called me out of the blue on the phone tonight. I hadn't heard from him in twenty years. He explained that he quit as a church pastor, after he officiated at a friend's marriage and his funeral two months later. Sounded suspiciously like another housekeeper.

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In "The Objectivist Ethics" Ayn Rand wrote, "one must never attempt to fake reality in any manner (which is the virtue of Honesty)."

How literally should we take this? Place a check next to each one who is faking reality:

___ An eight-year old pretending to be an astronaut.

___ A teenager playing Dungeons and Dragons.

___ An actress playing Karen Andre, a woman on trial for murder.

___ A wife playing a disobedient student and her husband the strict teacher.

___ A prostitute playing a disobedient student and her client the strict teacher.

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Several of Rand's heroines essentially prostituted themselves.

They had their reasons, but they slept with men they despised in exchange for some personal unrelated value they got from those men, so prostitution is a good description of what they did.

Also, NB once commented that he asked Rand why her female heroes burned through different men, whereas her male heroes did not burn through different women. She told him this was her fantasy, not his.

:)

Michael

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In "The Objectivist Ethics" Ayn Rand wrote, "one must never attempt to fake reality in any manner (which is the virtue of Honesty)."

How literally should we take this? Place a check next to each one who is faking reality:

___ An eight-year old pretending to be an astronaut.

___ A teenager playing Dungeons and Dragons.

___ An actress playing Karen Andre, a woman on trial for murder.

___ A wife playing a disobedient student and her husband the strict teacher.

___ A prostitute playing a disobedient student and her client the strict teacher.

They all know what they are doing.

--Brant

not so sure with method actors

you need to broaden this way out from acting

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They all know what they are doing.

--Brant

not so sure with method actors

you need to broaden this way out from acting

Yes, let's broaden it a bit to include, say, prostitution--which, by luck, happens to be the topic of this thread.

I will admit that in some sex-for-hire exchanges, the buyer may temporarily forget that he is with a prostitute and imagine that he is with his high school sweetheart. For those few minutes, he would in fact be faking reality. However, my guess is that in a significant number of transactions the buyer and seller "know what they are doing," as you adroitly expressed it.

Thus, to answer the original post, we can conclude that there need not be "'faking reality' on part of both the prostitute and the john."

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What if I'm a nerd who doesn't know jack about how to get girls and I feel awfully small and insecure around them?

I mean, how can I get laid, dude?

If I can justify prostitution in legal terms like victimless crime and turn it into a moral good, will that make me feel less guilty when I go to the whorehouse?

:)

Michael

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Think about all the amount of zealots this guy has to deal with, some wanting him dead, starting with the organized religions.

For the record, even though the "ranch" lol, is nearby I don't frequent it. :smile:

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To fake reality try drugs.

--Brant

Which drugs Brant? There are many, and many of those are used to deal with reality, not escape from it.

Once had a severe (possibly life ending) internal infection. Wanting not to be placed in the long box I chose penicillin.

-J

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Several of Rand's heroines essentially prostituted themselves.

They had their reasons, but they slept with men they despised in exchange for some personal unrelated value they got from those men, so prostitution is a good description of what they did.

Not disagreeing with the "prostitution" description. However, the twist I find really interesting in Rand's stories of a woman sleeping with a man for some personal unrelated value is that in three of the four cases, the woman came to respect the man she was using. Indeed, he was presented as largely admirable: the commandant in Red Pawn, Andrei in We the Living, Wynand in The Fountainhead.

In the first two cases, I find the man the woman is sleeping with for ulterior purposes a stronger character than the man she loves, and in the third, equally strong.

Larry once incurred some moments of Rand Wrath by telling Rand that he thought Andrei was more interesting than Leo. I heard of others saying likewise to her, and likewise being treated to some wrathful moments.

Ellen

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Larry once incurred some moments of Rand Wrath by telling Rand that he thought Andrei was more interesting than Leo. I heard of others saying likewise to her, and likewise being treated to some wrathful moments.

Ellen

The reason, of course, which neither of you could have known at the time, was that Leo was based on her first love whom she had left behind in Russia. She never was to learn he had been executed in the mid to late 1930s.

--Brant

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What if I'm a nerd who doesn't know jack about how to get girls and I feel awfully small and insecure around them?

I mean, how can I get laid, dude?

If I can justify prostitution in legal terms like victimless crime and turn it into a moral good, will that make me feel less guilty when I go to the whorehouse?

:smile:

Michael

While I'm not prepared to call prostitution a "moral good". Too many bad things happen in and around the prostitution business and I could'nt justify saying that. But I would say it's "morally neutral". As in, not neccesarily good nor bad.

And it's a real issue, sex is a deep need for most men. There are studies that actually show rape rates lowering where prostitution is legal. This is in no way whatsoever a justification of rape, but it goes to show the impact a single law can make on certain crimes ("crimes of passion" if you will).

I've been in the military and I've seen what sexual frustration does to heterosexual men. It's not pretty. Never been to prison but ditto there lol.

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Yes, let's broaden it a bit to include, say, prostitution--which, by luck, happens to be the topic of this thread.

I will admit that in some sex-for-hire exchanges, the buyer may temporarily forget that he is with a prostitute and imagine that he is with his high school sweetheart. For those few minutes, he would in fact be faking reality. However, my guess is that in a significant number of transactions the buyer and seller "know what they are doing," as you adroitly expressed it.

Thus, to answer the original post, we can conclude that there need not be "'faking reality' on part of both the prostitute and the john."

]

FF:

Have you ever been close friends with a prostitute, male or female, etc., high priced call girl [sounds so much better than prostitute], a "gigolo," or male prostitute?

Ever knew someone who married for citizenship and had to have sex as part of the deal?

A...

prostitute]

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I got a nice male prostitute in LA in 1979. He told me he liked me. (I later saw the motel we used--my motel--in a movie.) All I could think of was I would have liked boobs better but I didn't hold that against him personally. I hope he survived AIDS. I wanted to fuck him but he didn't want that action. That means there was a good chance he avoided being killed by AIDS. I'll never know. And I'll never know why he was into prostitution. There didn't seem to be any drug need. He seemed clean as any guy next door. That was the third and last time I paid for sex. I tried in 1978 in Las Vegas before I floated down the Grand Canyon, but she wanted too much money. She immediately dropped her price from 200 to 100 but the fantasy was gone to her Vegas money grubbing. I suppose she could have fluffed me, but I was more into a pretend love and affection which actually could have been real (needed a Geisha), not an X-movie. She looked like Rebecca de Mornay. Tom Cruise did better than I did, but he was all hormones in his break-out movie (Risky Business) and I had left some of mine in Vietnam and three blow jobs (two prostitutes and one airman--since the skyguy followed the whore by only an hour--he made the move on me and I was surprised--he could only go down on me for an hour and I still couldn't come. [i'd have enjoyed the ordeal if he had kept feeling up my body but he just went for my dick after running his hands over my ass--that was great! I later learned that as I got older I needed more to ejaculate than lips on my dick. Romantic killed the realism.])

Why tell this? One answer is Ayn Rand only understood male sexuality through a female lens. Francisco give up Dagny for John Galt's crusade? Only if they were lovers, brother!

--Brant

prostitution done right is an art--it's usually not done right--but I'm all for it all considered; let the markets work it out!

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]

FF:

Have you ever been close friends with a prostitute, male or female, etc., high priced call girl [sounds so much better than prostitute], a "gigolo," or male prostitute?

Ever knew someone who married for citizenship and had to have sex as part of the deal?

A...

prostitute]

I've known a number of attractive women who have traded sex for expensive cars, clothes, and a house. They usually call themselves "wives."

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]

FF:

Have you ever been close friends with a prostitute, male or female, etc., high priced call girl [sounds so much better than prostitute], a "gigolo," or male prostitute?

Ever knew someone who married for citizenship and had to have sex as part of the deal?

A...

prostitute]

I've known a number of attractive women who have traded sex for expensive cars, clothes, and a house. They usually call themselves "wives."

Clever.

So you have never known an "official" professional prostitute/call girl/boy?

It was a simple question.

A...

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I've never known a professional prostitute, at least not to my knowledge, but I have known lots of wives, and even was one myself for a time. There wasn't one of them who ever considered sex to by the only duty (or privilege) of her role. A wife, or a husband, for that matter, is not in the marriage to exchange sex for money or items of monetary value. She, or he, is in the marriage to be, and to have, a partner in life. That's not what a prostitute is. Stop comparing them.

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A wife, or a husband, for that matter, is not in the marriage to exchange sex for money or items of monetary value. She, or he, is in the marriage to be, and to have, a partner in life. That's not what a prostitute is. Stop comparing them.

Thanks Deanna, you saved me a post.

Frankly, I thought the comparison was asinine.

I do not like my mother being called a prostitute.

Nor, my daughter. Or, my wives.

I expect that, if he is a fair person, he will publicly apologize.

A...

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I've never known a professional prostitute, at least not to my knowledge, but I have known lots of wives, and even was one myself for a time. There wasn't one of them who ever considered sex to by the only duty (or privilege) of her role. A wife, or a husband, for that matter, is not in the marriage to exchange sex for money or items of monetary value. She, or he, is in the marriage to be, and to have, a partner in life. That's not what a prostitute is. Stop comparing them.

Yeah, a wife and a prostitute are not exactly the same thing. However, this does not take away the fact that there are financial transactions in both wife/husband and prostitute/johns relationships and it's usually from man to woman. This "gender skew" of wealth transfer leads me to believe there are underlying biological/evolutionary reasons for this.

Why are prostitutes mostly women? Why are johns mostly men (gay and straight)? Why are there no "male" mistresses?

You say marriage means a life partner (assuming this means "lifelong" partner), but you are no longer married? I don't want to know why your not married (not my business) so much as why you didn't follow your own principle/belief?

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I've never known a professional prostitute, at least not to my knowledge, but I have known lots of wives, and even was one myself for a time. There wasn't one of them who ever considered sex to by the only duty (or privilege) of her role. A wife, or a husband, for that matter, is not in the marriage to exchange sex for money or items of monetary value. She, or he, is in the marriage to be, and to have, a partner in life. That's not what a prostitute is. Stop comparing them.

Yeah, a wife and a prostitute are not exactly the same thing.

So based on a scale of 0 to 100, 0 being least exactly like a prostitute and 100 most exactly like a

prostitute, where would you put wives in general?

Why are prostitutes mostly women? Why are johns mostly men (gay and straight)? Why are there no "male" mistresses?

Last one first, there are numerous male mistresses, e.g., "gigolos."

I do not have an answer to your middle question.

Your first probably is that way because of the male dominated societies that, you know, have existed

since the beginning of recorded history. You knew that did you not?

Except for the rare "Amazon" myths and a few isolated cultural pockets, societies have been male

dominated.

A...

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^ The term "mistress" has another name: "kept woman". There is no such term as "kept man" by my knowledge. A gigolo is a prostitute, not a mistress. A mistress is maybe a species of prostitute, but more "high class" and caters to a single rich man. As of today, there are far more rich men than there are women.

So based on a scale of 0 to 100, 0 being least exactly like a prostitute and 100 most exactly like a
prostitute, where would you put wives in general?

I would put most wives maybe somewhere between 25 and 40. The distinction is significantly blurred due to perverse incentives in the divorce court system (which encourages wives to divorce early and just take the money). In America, the divorce rate is over 50% and it is over 70% initiated by the woman.

We live in a society of perverse incentives and many loopholes/scams. Most caused by the government. This is by no means the only example topic. I can go on at length about fraudulent disability claims, predatory lawsuits, lobbying (aka bribing), rent control gaming, special licenses etc and on and on.

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^ The term "mistress" has another name: "kept woman". There is no such term as "kept man" by my knowledge. A gigolo is a prostitute, not a mistress. A mistress is maybe a species of prostitute, but more "high class" and caters to a single rich man. As of today, there are far more rich men than there are women.

So based on a scale of 0 to 100, 0 being least exactly like a prostitute and 100 most exactly like a

prostitute, where would you put wives in general?

I would put most wives maybe somewhere between 25 and 40. The distinction is significantly blurred due to perverse incentives in the divorce court system (which encourages wives to divorce early and just take the money). In America, the divorce rate is over 50% and it is over 70% initiated by the woman.

We live in a society of perverse incentives and many loopholes/scams. Most caused by the government. This is by no means the only example topic. I can go on at length about fraudulent disability claims, predatory lawsuits, lobbying (aka bribing), rent control gaming, special licenses etc and on and on.

Marcus:

Out of curiosity, do you live in the United States?

A...

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there are far more rich men than there are women.

Currently about 20% of the world's richest people are women, until the remaining husbands die, whereupon will be 100%

Women control 65 percent of global spending and more than 80 percent of U.S. spending. http://www.fastcodesign.com/1663594/women-dominate-the-global-market-place-here-are-5-keys-to-reaching-them

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