John McCaslin

Clinton cast

An Inside the Beltway review of contributions from upscale Washington ZIP codes to the presidential campaign of New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton reads like a Who's Who of former Clinton White House officials.

Signing one or more sizable checks to Mrs. Clinton's campaign recently were former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright, former Agriculture Secretary Dan Glickman, former White House Chief of Staff Thomas F. "Mack" McLarty III, former White House Chief of Staff John Podesta and former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Harold Ickes.

Sinless day

"No news was committed" — or so reads one White House pool report tracking this week's official duties of President Bush.

Hill sex-ed

Apparently most congressional interns don't match the "over-sexed Washingtonienne" stereotype that is common in the news media — or so Inside the Beltway gathers from yesterday's fifth annual Campus Sex and Dating Conference held on Capitol Hill.

Questions posed to "Dr. Drew" Pinsky at the Rayburn House Office Building lunchtime conference, sponsored by the Independent Women's Forum, revealed an earnest interest in discussing the attitudes that lie behind the prevalent college hook-up culture.

While moderating a lively discussion of male and female views on sex, Dr. Pinsky addressed many themes common to his radio program, "Loveline," including commitment anxiety, self-esteem and the role of emotional instinct in relationships.

In assessing trends on college campuses, Dr. Pinsky noted that both men and women are currently "unhinged from previous biological constrictions," like the constant threat of pregnancy, disease or even death.

He described the college social environment as "unnaturally intense," as it gives women three basic options: to engage in an "intoxicated physical encounter with no commitment" (a hook-up), to begin a "joined at the hip" relationship or to agree to a "friends with benefits" arrangement. The women in the audience agreed that none of these options is ideal.

While leaving the larger moral and cultural implications up for consideration, Dr. Pinsky advocated personal responsibility, integrity and most importantly, an openness for dialogue.

"It is my deepest instinct that someone needs to sit down and talk about these things," he said yesterday.

Child cesspool

It would appear that 2008 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney jumped on the environmental bandwagon with his newest television ad yesterday, titled "Ocean."

John McCaslin

John McCaslin is a contributing columnist on and author of Inside The Beltway: Offbeat Stories, Scoops, and Shenanigans from around the Nation's Capital .

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