The number of states refusing federal money for “abstinence-only” sex education programs jumped sharply in the past year as evidence mounted that the approach is ineffective.
At least 14 states have either notified the federal government that they will no longer be requesting the funds or are not expected to apply, forgoing more than $15 million of the $50 million available, officials said. Virginia was the most recent state to opt out.
“We’re concerned about this,” said Stan Koutstaal of the Department of Health and Human Services, which runs the program. “My greatest concern about states dropping out is that these are valuable services and programs. It’s the youths in these states who are missing out.”
The program doesn’t work, so what would they be missing out on?
always an adventure for Linda Lindsey.
“If you wanted to get a promotion you didn’t necessarily have to have the qualifications,” remembered Lindsey, a former KBR contractor. “You just needed to be sleeping with the person who was doing the hiring.”
Lindsey spent two and a half years at the Al Asad Air Base in Iraq working for KBR. She coordinated military housing among other responsibilities.
Though she did not know Jamie Leigh Jones, the young KBR contractor who says she was drugged and gang raped by colleagues, Lindsey said Jones’ allegations are not surprising.
“Where I was at and when I was there it was very, very upsetting,” Lindsey recalled.
In a sworn affidavit for the Jones case, Lindsey said: “I saw rampant sexual harassment and discrimination.”
The alleged rape Jamie Leigh Jones surely wouldn’t have been the first incident of sexual assault on a female contractor, and it also probably won’t be the last. Government contractors effectively operate outside the rule of any law and they know it. They are exempt from Iraqi laws and they are exempt from any American laws. The most the American government can do is withdraw their contracts — and perhaps not even that — but it’s unlikely to happen with the larger contractors which have good political connections.
Do you really think that the people working for these contractors are unaware of the fact that no laws bind them and that no legal authorities can call them to accountability for their actions? Maybe a few are that dumb, but most surely aren’t. The worst they can expect to suffer as a consequence of immoral or otherwise illegal behavior is to be fired and sent home, but even that won’t likely happen with the best employees, with those who act as an organized group, or with those who are acting with some form of tacit approval from above.
This means that not only will Jamie Leigh Jones not see justice, but others are even more likely to become the victims of crimes — and management will be just as responsible as those who actually commit the crimes. The US government also arguably shares responsibility here for allowing a lawless environment to be created in the first place. Of course, given how President Bush himself doesn’t appear to feel that he should be subjected to any laws, perhaps we should have expected him to willfully take us down such a road. It’s just that authoritarian leaders prefer to be the only ones above the law.
The increase in incomes of the top 1 percent of Americans from 2003 to 2005 exceeded the total income of the poorest 20 percent of Americans, data in a new report by the Congressional Budget Office shows.
The poorest fifth of households had total income of $383.4 billion in 2005, while just the increase in income for the top 1 percent came to $524.8 billion, a figure 37 percent higher.
In other words, if the top 1 percent had accepted a stagnant income, no growth and no decrease, it would have been possible to more than double the income of one out of every five americans.
How’s that for unequal income distribution?
You can now measure your bandwidth in liters.