Below the Fold for February 23

Let's check out some political stories we found Below the Fold:

The Birds and Bees

England's Departments of Health and Education have begun encouraging young women to avoid pregnancy not by abstaining from sex, but by observing so-called stopping points, which they say will enable pupils to explore, "levels of intimacy" without going all the way. Among the stopping points is a level of intimacy made famous by Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky.

The non-abstinence approach taught in the U.K. schools may explain why England now has the highest teen pregnancy rate in Western Europe.

It Doesn't Add Up

In a striking case of government-sponsored inflation, San Francisco authorities said that last week's anti-war protests in the city drew 200,000 participants.

But the San Francisco Chronicle has studied high-resolution aerial photographs of the festival, and reports that the actual crowd was more along the order of 65,000.

Loves the French

The French Government received fulsome praise this week from Zimbabwe's maximum leader Robert Mugabe, whose awful human rights record has led to his being banned from alighting anywhere in Europe -- but who was granted a waiver by France last week to attend a French-African summit.

When asked about his visit to Paris, Mugabe chirped, "We felt at home" and praised French president Jacques Chirac for "uniting the world." He also had advice for nations that have shunned him: "All I can say, is they should behave like France is behaving."

Can They Spell Faux Pas?

Not all Americans hate the French. Some friendly demonstrators converged last week outside the French consulate in Los Angeles.

They tried to express their friendship by means of croissants. Their message: Long live peace -- or "vive la paix." But the confections seem to have created subliminal confusion, because the demonstrators spelled out "vive la pain" -- or Long live bread!