Archive for the tag "US Politics"

Calling “These women”: tell us about your disorders… (13/03/08)

This morning The Guardian published an opinion piece (Sptizer’s True Folly), in which I argued that we should promote laws which differentiate between the exchange of sex for money between consenting adults and the exploitation of children and unwilling workers. Here was one of the responses, from kathyw: Oh, please. These women (and the transgendered […]

Spitzer: some better ideas for the lapsed abolitionist (12/03/08)

The New York Times runs “all-sex-workers-are-victims” op-eds. The sex workers, blogging in force at Bound, Not Gagged and elsewhere, beg to differ. They also provide some practical policy guidance. Here, for example, is a list of policy goals from Jill Brenneman of Sex Worker’s Outreach Project East. • Decriminalization of all aspects of sex work […]

Put our money where your mouth is: politicians and prostitutes (11/03/08)

Scott Swensen suggests the following Prostitution Pledge for Politicians. As an American politician I will stop all hypocritical, self-righteous moralizing and judgment of the lives of others. I pledge to support legislation that treats all humans as equals and ensure that foreign assistance dollars intended to stop HIV/AIDS are allocated using the very best public […]

Spitzer: cementing a cross-party tradition of hypocrisy (11/03/08)

So New York’s Democrat governor Elliot Spitzer admits to having been a naughty boy. He wanted to have sex with someone who wasn’t his wife, and pay for it. Tut tut. Paroxysms of delight from his enemies at The Wall Street Journal and comment about Spitzer’s staying power and other analysis many other places besides. […]

Voting and sex, again (03/03/08)

Ted Gideonse doesn’t understand how Obama can be up two points in one poll and Hillary up 12 points in another. Because I’m in Bangkok and it’s past my bedtime, I’m going to be lazy and refer back to an earlier but ever more pertinent post: Voting is like sex.

Name that AIDS Programme (21/02/08)

The Center for Global Development invites readers to rename PEPFAR, the 15-soon-to-be-at-least-45 billion dollar aid programme for HIV care (and a bit of prevention) in developing countries. The finalists are now open for voting on; they include such inspirational suggestions as American Sustainable HIV/AIDS Relief Plan (A-SHARP) and Program to Encourage Partnerships Focused on AIDS […]

Bush on abstinence: it’s effective for Americans (21/02/08)

Finally, a reporter in Ghana put George Bush on the spot about earmarking over a billion dollars for abstinence-only programmes which Bush’s own scientific advisors say don’t work (recent thoughtful comment here). Here’s what Bush said: “I monitor the results,” he said. “And if it looks like it’s not working, then we’ll change. But thus […]

Where the candidates stand on AIDS (15/02/08)

From the ever-helpful Kaiser Family Foundation comes a very useful summary of where each of the US presidential candidates stands on HIV issues. The summaries for Obama and Clinton are so similar that I ran a “compare docs” on them. Besides substituting names and genders (he/she), the only real differences are: Obama supports “comprehensive sex […]

Same old same old: Bush tries to close down DC needle exchange funding (08/02/08)

The capital of the United States has HIV rates higher than those of Congo and Ethiopia. A lot of those infections are among drug injectors. Many in the city were hugely relieved when a ban on funding for needle exchange programmes in DC was effectively dropped just a couple of weeks ago. The city’s mayor […]

A hard choice on Super Tuesday (04/02/08)

As citizens of a country founded on the slogan “No taxation without representation”, Americans living overseas get to pay taxes without any dedicated representation in Congress. But they do get to vote in primaries. The Democrats make it easier than the Republicans , even providing helpful on-the-spot voting sites in pubs in Dublin and donut […]

The White House vs Science: what’s a girl to do? (31/01/08)

Salon’s Sheila Kaplan, Newshoggers and Michael Clark bring to our attention the latest salvo in the Bush administration’s war on science — this time, it was suppressing information about possible toxicity of trailers used to house victims of Hurricane Katrina because of formaldehyde, though it might just as well be the safety of condoms (which […]

Treating our failures (30/01/08)

As Think Progress and CREDO pointed out, George Bush shouldn’t have been quite so smug in his State of the Union address. They list some of the ways that US money is undermining progress against HIV. But I’m afraid they’ve missed some other gems that the administration has thrown up in the way of effective […]

Junkies on the frontline (28/01/08)

Some good news for drug injectors in the US: a nasal spray that costs less than US$ 10 can reverse the effect of an opiate overdose . Some even better news: programmes giving out these sprays have sprung up across the country. A programme on National Public Radio reports that these kits, which put drug […]

Voting is like sex: action trumps intention (12/01/08)

Anyone else amused by all the harrumphing about the pollsters’ failure to predict the results of the New Hampshire Democratic party primary? All manner of explanations are offered for why the pollsters got things so wrong. But very few people have come up with the explanation that is levelled at virtually every piece of sexual […]

Keep the Democrats Coming (09/01/08)

Democrats in Indonesia have organised to produce what every presidential candidate needs: handy condoms in packaging hardy enough to withstand the ardours of the campaign trail. Studded condoms, to boot, supplied by the ever-popular Fiesta brand. Studs and parties, then. Not entirely inappropriate.

Less might be more in funding HIV programmes (08/01/08)

In an eminently sensible editorial, Daniel Halperin recently argued that the vast resources available for AIDS in the developing world, and especially in Africa, are threatening to crush other important priorities such as basic sanitation. This has prompted a prickly response from the Global AIDS Alliance. Somewhat predictably, the Global AIDS Alliance argues that we […]

Needling the White House (21/12/07)

So Congress has finally passed the US$ 556 billion budget bill (Reuters). It now goes to George Bush to be signed. As John McManus and others note, the bill is laden with pork. McManus is rightly infuriated by how keen most Congressmen are to bring home the pork, in other words, to bundle spending on […]

In the begining, there was nonsense (16/12/07)

Brits tend to look down on the US for allowing fundamentalist fervour to drive politics. But Britain would do well to look at the rise of the tub-thumpers at home. Check out the plans for a Christian theme park in Lancashire, modeled, perhaps, on the Holy Land Experience in Orlando, Florida. In keeping with Britain’s […]

Squashing science: It’s not just us (11/12/07)

In a new report (pdf, 37 pages), America’s House Oversight Committee has suggested that the Bush White House has been massaging the science on climate change.The report’s “one inescapable conclusion: the Bush Administration has engaged in a systematic effort to manipulate climate change science and mislead policymakers and the public about the dangers of global […]

Huckabee was right (for the wrong reasons) (10/12/07)

US Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee is refusing to suck back comments made in 1992 about isolating people with HIV, according to an AP report reprinted in the IHT. Web sites are buzzing with outrage: Huckabee wants to quarantine people with HIV. Shame! Despite his own, rather incompetent efforts to defend himself from that assertion on […]

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