Holmes Report Blog

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Monday, January 09, 2006

Intellectual Inconsistency: Every now and again, The Wall Street Journal flat-out amazes me. Its op-ed pages today contain a lecture on the immorality of the sex industry, in which authors Colette de Troy and Mary McPhail stand up for the poor, exploited workers against the unabashed capitalists who make a profit off their hard labor.

"World-wide profits from prostitution exceed $12 billion annually," they say at the opening of their article. "Of course, the women generally see very little of this money." Later, they bemoan the fact that "the sex trade is predominantly in the economic interests of sex traders and takes place at the expense of the prostitutes."

Take out the words "sex traders" and "prostitutes" and replace them with the word "corporations" and "workers" and you'd have an identical socialist critique of the entire capitalist system.

I'm not making any kind of apology for the sort of human trafficking that accompanies the sex trade. But I'm not sure it's any worse than the exploitation of illegal immigrants on farms in California or coerced labor in sweatshops here and abroad, and it's hard to imagine the Journal giving op-ed space to union organizers opposed to such practices.

If I was a cynic I might wonder whether its outrage over the sex trade might have more to do with its disapproval of the product for sale than concern for the women selling it.


  • At 1:22 AM, Blogger Ike said…

    ...as opposed to the porn industry, which didn't really explode mainstream until women assumed the roles of producers, directors, and entrepreneurs.


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