mardi, mars 13, 2007

Capitol Vice

It was only a month ago that I finally got the TV I received for Christmas set up in the bedroom. At the moment it has been consecrated to American Idol on Tuesday nights. A truly mean mom, I don't usually allow my children to watch television in my bedroom-I banish them to the dungeon (I mean, the cellar) instead.

Thank goodness that our local Y has CNN, or I might never have learned about the Washington scandal de jour, the exploits of Deborah Palfrey, AKA the "DC Madam."

It baffles me that this story hasn't made the front page of the NY Times (or possibly I've missed it?)

In case you have been living in neverneverland, also, here's a brief summary of the story to date. This itidbit is stolen from the online webzine Salon, which purloined it from Politico:

Deborah J. Palfrey, former owner of a "high-end adult fantasy firm which offered legal sexual and erotic services across the spectrum of adult sexual behavior" in Washington, D.C., announced Thursday that she's putting the phone records of her business -- which include the numbers of her Washington clientele -- up for sale. Palfrey's financial assets were seized by the IRS as part of an investigation into her business, and she hopes to sell the phone records -- all 46 pounds of them -- to raise money for her legal defense. Her lawyer says a price hasn't been set yet, "because we haven't finished mining the data to identify the individuals. Obviously if Bill Clinton's on the list that's a different matter than, you know, somebody nobody's ever heard of before." (Politico)

Selling her phone records to raise money for her defense? Ain't free market capitalism wonderful?

I learned somewhere else that Palfrey allegedly has 15,000 names in her phone records-which could, and probably should, have some guys in official Washington waiting for the next shoe, or pair of knickers, to drop. But in Washington morality is apparently like carbon credits-traded in the volatile exchange of public confidence. If Bill Clinton's name is indeed found on those records, will it affect how we see the Presidential prospects of wife Hillary? What about Newt Gingrich?

I care more, or at least I should care more, about the constitutional battles beginning between this outlaw Administration and the as yet untried Democrats in Congress .

But it's a lot more fun to speculate on who was reckless enough to book an hour, or a weekly visit with one of Ms. Palfrey's ladies. Apparently only women with two years of college under their belt (or wherever) could work for her. Perhaps I've leaped to judgement too soon-could it be that Palfrey's customers only wanted a quiet conversation in between votes on the floor of the House?

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