Freelance Hookers Rebuffed In Oz

There are few times one can talk about the economics and politics of cartels and licensing requirements, and still make it this fun:

Brothel owners accuse backpackers of selling sex in Australia

Foreign backpackers funding their Australian travels through illegal sex work are robbing the legitimate industry of profits and threatening clients’ health, a brothel lobbyist has warned.

Many young tourists to sun-soaked northeastern Queensland state were making a quick buck as black market prostitutes, undermining registered operators’ attempts to uphold health and safety standards, the Queensland Adult Business Association’s Nick Inskip claimed.

“Especially when you go up to northern Queensland, it’s not unusual for them to be working in the illegal escort industry,” Inskip said.

Having fewer overheads, they could often undercut the legal sex industry on price, making it harder for the state’s 23 legal brothels to make a profit, he said.

It sounds absurd when you hear it this way. But here in this country, pundits regularly rail against the “illegal invaders from the south taking our jobs”, and it seems perfectly acceptable to require that workers such as beauticians should be required to seek a state license.

I support relatively free immigration, and fight against government trade licensing requirements. For that reason, in the interest of ideological consistency, I also support (although don’t patronize) the rights of freelance hookers.

  • Adam Selene

    See my post last night on security and privilege. Whether it’s hookers or doctors, it says it all.

  • Stephen Littau

    Brad, my biggest problem with illegal immigration is the entitlement mentality so many of the illegals have. They come here illegally, expect us to educate their children, pay for their healthcare, expect Social Security benefits, and want to participate in our political process (vote in our elections). I have heard many of these illegal advocates say that all these things are not privileges but rights.

    We are talking about a woefully uneducated group of people who wish to import their statist values into this country (some even want to re take the Southwest and create their own country, though I do not think its as large of a segment as some would have us believe).

    I know that some would call these comments xenophobic but someone please show me where I’m wrong. I am also very aware that most of the problem is caused by the welfare state (but we know how liklihood of us ever eliminating the welfare state when everything is moving more in that direction) and illegal aliens are simply taking advantage. My point is illegal immigration is not a victimless crime. One way or another, we are all victims of this illegal invasion through higher healthcare costs, increased crime (American prisons are full of illegals who commit both violent and nonviolent crimes), and corruption of our political process (being an American citizen should mean something shouldn’t it?).

  • Doug Mataconis


    I agree with you in some respects, but I can’t say that I blame the immigrants for this situation.

    After all, they come to the United States looking for a better life, just like people did 100 years ago. The difference today is that they’ve got a whole bunch of people telling them that, rather than working hard and making a better life for themselves and their children, they should look to the state to take care of them.

    Given the fact that this is pretty much the same system they were used to in their home countries, one can hardly blame them for taking advantge of it.

    I see immigrants like the ones you talk about all the time. But I also see other immigrants who come here and work hard and build businesses, whether it’s a contractor, or a dry cleaner, or a restaurant. They’re not asking for handouts, and they aren’t complaining when they have to work 16 hours a day.

    That’s why, on the whole, I still think immigration is a net-plus.

  • Les Botfa

    FINE – Be an immigrant. Come to America. Work your butt off, and make a great living for yourself. Choose to be educated, or don’t. All that – I don’t really care about.

    What I DO care about… BECOME LEGAL ! ! ! Learn our systems and about the country you’re going to take advantage of, PAY TAXES, and learn our language (I’m not saying you have to abandon the language of your motherland.) I don’t think that’s too much to ask.

    And if you don’t want to pay taxes or register with the government – then I don’t think you have anything to complain about, or any right to ASK for anything. You’re a guest.

    My parents were BOTH immigrants. They love this country and the opportunities it afforded them. But they NEVER asked for a hand out. They had too much pride. And – they made it work for themselves.