'Curse of the Unpaid Prostitute' Befalls Agents
Secret Service can learn a lot from 'drunken sailors': essay
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 27, 2012 1:30 PM CDT
The Hotel El Caribe in Cartagena, Colombia, heart of the Secret Service scandal.   (AP Photo/Pedro Mendoza, File)

(Newser) – Those Secret Service agents in Colombia got what they had coming to them because one in their midst violated a code of honor of sorts, writes a former merchant seaman in the Washington Post: He didn't pay his prostitute. "In my day, seamen were convinced that this was such a serious infraction it could threaten a ship’s survival," writes Roberto Loiederman.

All those legends about sailors visiting ports? Yeah, pretty much true. But while there was debauchery, there was no dishonor on this crucial point—that of avoiding the "curse of the unpaid prostitute," he writes. If those agents had "followed the same ethical standards as the drunken sailors I used to work with, there would have been no confrontation, and they might still have their jobs." Read the full column here.