ciphergoth: (Default)
[personal profile] ciphergoth
I’m not one of those who think that paternalism is always wrong. I’m OK with laws that require the use of seat belts, for example; people aren’t too good at weighing up small unavailable risks, the cost of wearing a seat belt is pretty small for nearly everyone, and the rule saves a large number of lives for a fairly small cost in liberty. But I’d like to start calling it what it is; it’s a statement that we know better what is good for people than they do.

Prostitutes prefer it if their clients aren’t arrested. So if you’re going to advocate the “Swedish Model” in the interests of those currently working as prostitutes, please be upfront that what you’re calling for is paternalism. Don’t advocate this model if you’re not prepared to say, in terms, that you think you know what is good for those working as prostitutes better than they do.

Date: 2015-04-19 09:44 am (UTC)
lovingboth: (Default)
From: [personal profile] lovingboth
Because lots of the research thoroughly debunking it talks about the Swedish model, those proposing it have started talking about the 'Nordic model' instead.

It's not just paternalism, it's gesture politics (the people proposing it know that it won't have any effect in terms of significantly reducing the number of people who pay for sex) and sexism (they almost inevitably ignore male and trans workers and female and trans clients) in action.

My favourite example of the last bit is the book that damns male clients as 'users', 'sadists', 'necrophiles' and 'child abusers'... and then moans that potential female ones can't find men to pay: "Their only choice is to have affairs". How they missed a single website with nearly ten thousand optimistic men (as well as almost the same number of women) offering paid sex to women in the UK, sometimes for very low prices, I don't know.

Date: 2015-04-21 10:44 am (UTC)
damerell: NetHack. (normal)
From: [personal profile] damerell
Not much to do with paternalism, but personally, I'd much prefer to waive the requirement for driver seatbelts. Risk compensation again...

Date: 2015-04-21 01:07 pm (UTC)
damerell: (cycling)
From: [personal profile] damerell
I don't think the devil is in the detail with driver seatbelts, but the overall picture; they improve matters for drivers to a degree we're not sure of because risk compensation, but make matters worse for everybody outside the car because risk compensation. Motoring is a highly efficient way to externalise one's costs on other people anyway; less of that would be good.

This can be a controversial subject, but... helmets ain't even a tradeoff - for whatever reason, the things appear to do approximately nothing.

Date: 2015-04-21 03:26 pm (UTC)
damerell: (trains)
From: [personal profile] damerell
http://john-adams.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2006/failure%20of%20seatbelt%20legislation.pdf discusses the effect in Britain (the standout line is "But no studies have been done so far to explain why, after the seat belt law came into effect in Britain, seat belts have been so extraordinarily selective in saving the lives only of those who are over the alcohol limit and driving between 10 at night and 4 in the morning").

Bae seems to hypothesise their observations are down to the patchwork of regulations between states of the USA, although it's still a rather different conclusion.

What I'm saying, though, is if Adams is right, I don't want to count net lives lost. I care a great deal less about people who cause the danger in the first place.

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