Boys Are Such Easy Lays
My lament about the lack of attention by the White House to the MorePeaceCorps campaign, and the lack of juice by the NPCA, created an outcry (well, at least from one recent employee of the Peace Corps), who came out of the woodwork in defense of Jody Olsen. And I wasn’t even attacking Jody!
You can read his comment to me. Roger, who is a good guy, was upset at my tone, I guess, and that I had called Jody a Utah “Republican.”
He has a point. Calling anyone a ‘Republican” today is a slap in the face, Sorry, Jody!
You can read what Roger says in his comment: “Your public vitriol about Jody Olsen is misplaced, inappropriate, inaccurate, and unattractive. Jody may be Republican – who knows? – but that is totally irrelevant to her performance, dedication, and thoroughly decent personage….”
First, all I said about Jody (besides being a Republican) was that she was “passing out hall passes in the Peace Corps.” I’m saying that metaphorially, Roger!
However, the recent piece about the Peace Corps in the Boston Globe had the reporter calling Jody for a comment on the decline in numbers within the agency and she refused to comment, won’t even come to the phone. What else is she not doing at the agency?
What I know about Jody is what other Peace Corps women have said about her. When Jody first returned to the agency in the Bush administration (see, I don’t have to say, Republican) the women who knew her and worked with her when she was with Paul Coverdell said she was a lovely lady with no back bone.
We know she let Gaddi Vasquez, who was not an RPCV, walk all over her when he was head of the agency. Gaddi took off on those jaunts overseas and Jody–the only RPCV in the senior staff–never once left the U.S. Did they not trust her with PCVs or foreign officials because she was an RPCV or a woman?
When I mentioned to my women friends how the men that I knew thought Jody was just great, they’d smile and shake their heads and say, “boys are such easy lays when it comes to pretty girls.”
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I have to admit that as much affection as I have for Jody, I’ve always wondered at her evident powerlessness and her willingness make a potentially influential position essentially toothless. I came to see her as a Bush II sop to “old” Republican centrists, there as a name to satisfy the old guard but not to make waves. While I never brought myself to accuse her of complicity, I did wonder at her willingness to play along. In the building, her lack of power was embarrassing to those of us who liked her.