Monthly Archives: June 2011

Scandal: Affair with a male prostitute How he was outed



Widely regarded as one of the most intelligent and well spoken members of the House of Representatives, Barney Frank, a Democratic Congressman for nearly 30 years and the first openly gay member of the House, almost undid his career in 1989 after having an affair with Steve Gobie, a male prostitute. Although Frank was single at the time — thus not committing adultery — he did pay someone for sex (with personal funds), which is illegal in his state of Massachusetts. But the poor judgment didn’t end there. Frank hired Gobie to run errands and allowed him to live at his home, where Frank obviously hoped he would be rehabilitated and renounce his life of sin. The only problem: Gobie kept on working as a prostitute — from Frank’s home.

The Congressman maintained that he had no knowledge that his digs were being used as a brothel and said that he kicked Gobie out once he learned what the escort had been doing there. Desperate to prove his limited culpability in the case, Frank requested an investigation by the House Ethics Committee. The 10-month probe found that Frank did not, in fact, know about the happenings in his home but that he should be reprimanded for use of House privilege in waiving 33 of Gobie’s parking tickets and for writing a memo that attempted to end Gobie’s probation for a prior infraction. Despite attempts by former Idaho Congressman Larry Craig (the stall-inator) to have the Massachusetts Congressman removed, Frank went on to win several re-elections by wide margins.


Scandal: Yearlong affair How he was outed


The Sanford saga began with a disappearing act. The then South Carolina governor apparently left home in a black SUV on June 18, 2009, and stopped answering his cell phone and responding to text messages and e-mails. He was AWOL for the better part of a week. The explanations piled up: the rising GOP star was “writing something,” said his wife; he was recharging after losing a fight to refuse stimulus money, said his spokesman; he was hiking the Appalachian Trail, said his staff. When a reporter cornered Sanford at an airport in Atlanta on June 24, however, the governor revealed that he’d been in Buenos Aires. With South Carolina’s capital, Columbia, buzzing with talk of impeachment, Sanford, 49, held a press conference to explain himself: he’d gone to visit an Argentinian woman with whom he’d been having an affair. Apologizing to his wife and four sons and choking up repeatedly, Sanford said he’d spent “the last five days of my life crying in Argentina” and had ended the yearlong dalliance. Sanford, a rumored 2012 presidential hopeful, said he would resign as head of the Republican Governors Association.

Semester fails syllabi test


Blame it on the lackadaisical approach of the varsity authorities or lack of interest among teachers, the semester system would be introduced in the Patna University next year.

The University Grants Commission (UGC) had asked the varsity to introduce the semester system from July 2011. But several postgraduate departments failed to submit their new syllabi for it.

According to the UGC guidelines, all the departments have to submit their new syllabus to the varsity before the introduction of the semester system. It is then assessed by two senior teachers from the universities outside the state where the semester system is in vogue.

The Patna University vice-chancellor, Sudipto Adhikari, said: “Many postgraduate departments failed to submit the new syllabus for the semester system, leaving us with no option but to introduce it from the next academic session only.”

The postgraduate departments like political science, home science, Bengali and psychology were the defaulters.

Adhikari said: “The UGC has set July 2012 deadline for introduction of the semester system, failing which the funds provided by it for infrastructure development and research activities would be stopped.”

The varsity has directed all its postgraduate departments to reconstitute their statutory boards of courses and studies at the earliest so they could approve their syllabi under the semester system. Arun Kumar Sinha, dean, faculty of science, said: “All postgraduate department heads have been asked to prepare the new syllabus to be introduced in the semester system.”

Besides the non-submission of syllabus by a few departments, the man crunch in the varsity was a spanner in the introduction of the semester system. With not enough teachers on board, checking copies every six months under the semester system would have been an uphill task.

The Patna University Teachers’ Association general secretary Randhir Kumar Singh said: “The university does not have requisite infrastructure to start the semester system. The varsity is facing severe teachers’ crunch. There is also lack of basic infrastructure like classrooms and laboratories to run the semester system.”

The varsity is at present functioning with just the half of its sanctioned strength of teachers.

With the introduction of semester system, there would be continuous evaluation of the students with half-yearly examination. The two-year postgraduate courses would be divided into four semesters. The duration of each semester would be six months.

Apart from the semester exams, the students would have to perform well in class tests, extra-curricular activities. Their attendance, too, has to be healthy. For, 20 per cent marks would hinge on these.

In each subject, there would be 16 papers. Four papers would comprise each semester.