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Thursday, December 08, 2005

Lay Off the "Working Girls"Councillors, Let the Free Market Sort it Out.

Manukau City Council is seeking support from all MPs for the successful passage through parliament of a bill to place controls on street prostitution.

The Bill aims to give authorities the power to stop street prostitution by prohibiting soliciting in public places in Manukau City. It will apply to both prostitutes and their clients. It gives police the power to request information, to issue instant fines of $500, to arrest suspected offenders, and to prosecute offenders in Court that may result in a fine of up to $10,000.

Green MP Sue Bradford has rightly pointed out that the council is "hoist on its own petard" because it has banned Suburban Owner Operated Brothels (SOOBs) in its patch, thus driving more women and girls onto the street. (Getting a glimpse of how the free market works, eh Sue?)

When will these council "nanny staters" learn that prostitution will always be with us and to allow it to ply its trade like any other. The market moves goods and services, much like water flows. If you restrict water flow in one direction, you get a leak elsewhere. If you dam a river (ie ban prostitution) you will get a major surge when the dam breaks. Leave things alone and it will settle to natural level.

The answer is to remove restrictions and allow prostitutes to ply their trade like dairy owners, dentists or beauty therapists. Treat prostitute like human beings and let them integrate into the community as much as possible.

A true free market approach would take things even further. councils, or central government would not own streets as they do now. All streets would be owned by private individuals, companies or "body corporates". The rules of private property would then apply. Prostitutes might rent certain street places to work, or they could be trespassed off streets where the owners objected to their trade.

Any attempt to drive prostitution back underground is doomed to failure. It is also immoral, unfair, inhumane and authoritarian. Look for free market solutions, councilors, because it really should be none of your damn business anyway.


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