Another Blow for Abstinence

Back in 2005, I reported on the much-hated anti-prostitution pledge, an anti-sex work oath foreign aid organizations had to sign if they wanted a piece of the $15 billion President Bush had set aside for anti-AIDS work. At the time, the great libertarian humanitarian (and Reason donor) Phil Harvey was fighting the pledge on First Amendment grounds, hoping he could continue his partially PEPFAR -funded work in Vietnam and elsewhere without having to publicly proclaim an objection to sex work. The U.S. Court of Appeals ruled against Harvey in March. And here are some recent happenings in the life of Randall Tobias, the United States Global Aids Coordinator from 2003 to 2006, head of USAID thereafter, and vocal fan of abstinence for poor people everywhere:

Randall L. Tobias, the deputy secretary of state responsible for U.S. foreign aid, abruptly resigned yesterday after he was asked about an upscale escort service allegedly involved in prostitution, U.S. government sources said.

Tobias resigned after ABC News contacted him with questions about the escort service, the sources said. ABC News released a statement last night saying Tobias acknowledged Thursday that he had used the service to provide massages, not sex.

No one said you had to abstain from massages, Africa! All of this says less about the anti-prostitution pledge than it does about one sad man; the former deserves to be assailed on its own merits and absent the apparent hypocrisy of its supporters.

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  • ||

    Apparently tuggies count as abstinence.

  • ||

    The problem is that the abstinence campaign was so succesful, that a guy like Tobias was forced to pay for it.

  • thoreau||

    The woman who ran the "service" company is promising to name more names.

    This. Will. Be. Fun.

  • ||

    I predict this story will have a...

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Dude, Kerry said another blow.... (snickers to himself).

    Back in 2005, I reported on the much-hated anti-prostitution pledge, an anti-sex work oath foreign aid organizations had to sign if they wanted a piece of the $15 billion...

    Back in 2005 I reported on the much-hated idea that US taxpayers were forking over 15 billion in foreign AIDS.

    Couple of thoughts,

    Why is putting strings on free money a problem? Were I to give the homeless a wad of cash I would expect the guy not spend it on Night Train. Since that is impossible to enforce, I don't give money to the homeless. Hmmmm, maybe that is the lesson here. Don't pass out free money with strings. How about don't pass out free money at all?

  • ||

    TWC,

    It was a compelled speech case. The Supreme Court has held that the government can't make participation in government programs conditional on holding a specific viewpoint.

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    When I give money to panhandlers, I would be disappointed if they didn't use it to buy alcohol/drugs!

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    All of this says less about the anti-prostitution pledge than it does about one sad man; the former deserves to be assailed on its own merits and absent the apparent hypocrisy of its supporters.

    Kerry says this, but only after first wallowing in schadenfruede over the personal shortcomings of Tobias.

  • ||

    Whatever happened to honor among whores?

    Shii, If we legalized it you could have her ass in front of the Maryland Sex Worker Ethics Association for breach of confidentiality.

  • Jennifer||

    Tobias acknowledged Thursday that he had used the service to provide massages, not sex.

    Who does he expect to believe this? Especially since there's no shortage of completely legal sex-free massage parlors if all you need is someone to work out the kinks in your muscles rather than your head.

  • ||

    i'm a college female and am pretty offended by this Tobias' actions.. check out my opinon here http://collegecandy.com/2007/04/30/the-politician-and-the-prostitute/

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    The Supreme Court has held that the government can't make participation in government programs conditional on holding a specific viewpoint.

    Thanks Kerry. I guess I was marginally aware of this in the sense that you can't make welfare recipients promise to vote Democrat before they can have a check. But this seems like, well, Foreign Aid and, as such, is all the more reason to dispense with government largess.

  • ||

    "Man, I cannot get this cramp out of my shoulder. I'd better call a hooker."

    I just wanted to see what looked like typed out.

  • Guy Montag||

    So, Reason caught up with this one but missed the Jim Webb staffer getting off of his illegal gun charge in DC needs to wait a while.


    Jeffrey A. Taylor, U.S. attorney for the District, said in a statement late yesterday that his office concluded that the essential elements of the charge could not be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. Among other things, lawyers said, prosecutors would had to have shown that Thompson knew he had the gun.



    I wonder if that magic defense will work for the rest of us?

  • ||

    I just wanted to see what looked like typed out.

    Not bad. I eagerly await the field report.

  • ||

    Among other things, lawyers said, prosecutors would had to have shown that Thompson knew he had the gun.

    [Antonio Banderas voice] Thass no' mine. [/Antonio Banderas voice]

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Guy, Jim Webb is the Great White Hope and you are tarnishing his rep.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Funny stuff RC

  • VM||

    *passes joe a hand-dipped cigar

  • Guy Montag||

    Guy, Jim Webb is the Great White Hope and you are tarnishing his rep.

    Apparently David is not longer distracted by milkshakes and no Webb gun story will sneek past him again.

  • thoreau||

    Guy Montag, I see your point but--

    OMG!!! LOOK OVER THERE!!! YOU SEE THAT THING? WOW!!!

    What were we talking about?

    That's how it's done, folks. Give 'em the old razzle dazzle.

  • ||

    Sooner or later, the excuse du jour will be " I did not swallow.."

  • ||

    Bill Clinton was widely ridiculed for saying that he had smoked marijuana, but "I didn't inhale". Is Tobias now claiming that he engaged the services of a professional escort, but "I didn't insert"?

  • ||

    Sooner or later, the excuse du jour will be " I did not swallow.."

    I've always wondered if Monica swallowed Bill's...you know... uh...hmm...

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    "I wonder if that magic defense will work for the rest of us?"

    Depends on if anyone on the jury has carried a pistol in a Milt Sparks holster.

    Sometimes you almost do forget that it's there.

    soooo comfy.

  • ||

    Getting off the question of semen ingestion and back to Randy Tobias's inherent toolness, I think everyone is missing that he was formerly CEO of Eli Lilly. This was the guy who delayed the introduction of Cialis to America (it debuted before Viagra in Europe). I guess he was keeping it all for himself.

  • thoreau||

    This was the guy who delayed the introduction of Cialis to America (it debuted before Viagra in Europe).

    Wait, he delayed Cialis? Um, didn't he realize how much money could be made in that market?

    Figures that the dumbest executive in the pharmaceutical business would wind up in the public sector.

  • cgee||

    Toxic, I take that you too are a fan of the verbal mannerisms of Maryland State Senator R. Clayton Davis.

    (sheeeeeeeeeeeeeit...)

  • ||

    *passes joe a hand-dipped cigar

  • William Oliver||

    I don't think it's a good idea to use "blow" and "abstinence" in the same sentence. It gets confusing.

  • ||

    He should have purchased abstinence offsets.

  • dr. dog||

    Another Blow for Abstinence

    Don't mind if I do.

  • ||

    Remember, according to Bill Clinton Oral sex is not real sex, so "Another Blow for Abstinence" is not a pun but a satisfying way for girls not to get pregnanent.
    Uh, satisfying for the boys mostly. And middle age horny teachers.

  • triticale||

    Silly me. I see the word blow in the headline and I think "nose candy" rather than "sexual favor".

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    ..nose candy?

    OMIGOD!

  • miche||

    I've always wondered if Monica swallowed Bill's...you know... uh...hmm...



    She may have let him finish in her mouth but she didn't swallow and I was pretty sick of the blue dress.

  • jim||

    Vice is a tribute paid to Virtue. A failure to conquer an appetite does not obviate the need to control it. We'd might as well junk any campaigns against smoking, drinking, Meth, or trans-fats. None of these are healthy behaviors. Neither is casual sex.

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    Whatever the "libertarian correct" pose, prostitution in many of these poorer countries is much less of a "choice" than it is here, akin in many instances to slavery.

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    Oh come on. Surely you understand how "sex work" is organized in these countries. It is slavery, pure and simple. Get off of it. Talk about taxes or legalization or some such other relevant thing. What Tobias did has little to do with government policy. This is the nittiest of nits to pick with the government.

  • ||

    Casual sex not healthy behavior? Are you kidding me?

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