The AP had a story out of Amsterdam that the government is cracking down on prostitutes, not for what they do but for not paying taxes on their business. Prostitutes were told they would be audited in typically bureaucratic fashion with a notice addressed to "landlords and window prostitutes in Amsterdam. Agents of the Tax service will walk through various elements of your business administration with you, such as prices, staffing, agendas and calendars. The facts will be used at a later date in reviewing your returns.''
As you probably know, prostitution is legal in Amsterdam and they have an area where they stand in windows so customers to walk by although I think many of those customers are tourists.
Anyway, I am curious what the readers think about legalized prositution. I think in the U.S., it is legal only in Nevada and HBO sometimes has shows from, I think, the Bunny Ranch. I think since it going to happen anyway, it is better to legalize it, regulate it and tax it. I feel the same way about drugs, even cocaine. Legalizing cocaine would end the drug wars, lower the murder rate from turf battles and provide more taxes. But it makes too much sense to ever happen. And we're still much too Puritan of a country to legalize prostitution.
I also found it interesting that in Amsterdam, they charge $65 for 15 minutes. Only 15 MINUTES? What can I say?
It also said the tax rate is 52 per cent on people making $74,000. Imagine if you tried to get that rate in the U.S. They couldn't even raise the rate from 35 per cent to something like 39.6 for millionaires. But then they get a lot more services in Europe, including health care.
It may not be popular for our U.S. readers for me to say this, but I find it interesting that the huddled masses came to the U.S. to get a better life. And yet in many ways, the people who stayed behind in Europe wound up with a better lifestyle. Granted, we have bigger houses and cars and more things and stuff. But I'm not so sure they're not happier. They don't worry about losing health insurance if they lose their job or going bankrupt if they suffer a major illness. They tend to have more vacation time and they don't seem to have the workaholic lifestyle we tend to have in the U.S. Of course, all this is very subjective, but I find it interesting.
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