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"What is the difference between a realist and a dreamer? The realist thinks that someday a UFO will come down and hover over the UN building, and that the aliens will come out of the UFO and offer to share their technology and solve all our world's problems.

The dreamer thinks maybe we can get our act together and do it ourselves."

Russian joke [It's a joke?] cited in William K. Hartmann, A Traveler's Guide to Mars.

04 October 2006

Let me explain what sex is

Please see my current blog (at for this post. It's filed under the same name and date in the Archives.

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Blogger PMS_Chicago said...

This is a great post. My only concern is that people could probably point to Monica Lewinsky the same way you point to the pages:

Foley propositions people young enough to be his grandchildren, AND OVER WHOM HE HAS POWER. That is a crime. It would have been bad enough if he'd been streetwalking in DC looking for nineteen year-olds. But he had to go harass lowly clerical staff who are hoping to make a career in his business.

They could say that Lewinsky, too, was lowly clerical staff hoping to make a career in politics. So, that too could be a crime. no?

However, there's the matter of consent and coercion. Did Monica Lewinsky feel coerced? Did she give consent?

Personally, I was never convinced that Lewinsky felt coerced or that she didn't consent to the relations. Rather, I think she was delighted to be at the center of things, and altogether too happy about it.

Foley's pages, by contrast, often weren't old enough to legally give consent in their home states. (The age of consent is 16 in Washington, D.C. *shudder*) Furthermore, if you speak even the slightest bit of teenager, their hesitance and discomfort with humoring Foley's come-ons is VERY obvious.

Again, excellent post (as usual), and great food for thought.

10/07/2006 9:29 AM  
Blogger quixote said...

I gather Lewinsky "started it," as it were, and Clinton was all-too-willing. So there were no issues of harassment. Nor, given her age (22) of consent.

There is the issue of totally dubious workplace ethics on Clinton's part. I was a college prof for the longest time, and the equivalent--screwing around with students in one of your own classes--could get you fired even if you had tenure. It doesn't matter if the student lies down naked in front of you, it is simply Not Done. I'd think exactly the same holds true for the President and the interns, and I'm also sure Clinton knew it and just figured he could get away with it.

The difference, though, is that Clinton committed totally inappropriate behavior, not a crime. He wasn't actually harming anyone, except Hillary. You don't go to jail for adultery, at least not in any civilized country. Harassment, on the other hand, hurts everyone who's a target, and what Foley did was major harassment.

One of the saddest comments, among many sad comments coming out of the Grand Old Perverts about this, was that those emails would have been unremarkable if directed to a woman. Gives all of us some idea of how they view harassment of female staf.

10/07/2006 5:03 PM  

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