Lala, there is a huge difference in the pysche of the confiner. This is what you are seeing. Laundry = ok, crate = not ok. dog is confined in both, physically restrained in both, unable to satisfy its drives in both.
I think its a personal thing in owners viewpoint, cruel or not.
I use a laundry, im happy. I use my crate, i feel guilt. My dogs dont give a damn either way, they are unhappy in both
Both have same results, but only one is portable.