THE CAPITAL: Horribly Unhealthy

The diner-out who elbows his way to a restaurant chair in Washington has learned to eat his food either 1) in optimistic haste, or 2) with queasy care. Reason: the insect world and slovenly workers are fighting a winning battle against laxly enforced sanitation laws and overworked health inspectors.

In the past 14 months, some 1,000 Washington restaurants, groceries and delicatessens were accused of violating sanitation laws. A few unruffled owners have been arrested as many as five times. But paying a fine or forfeiting bail (usually $25) has been easier than cleaning the place up.

Last week one of the...

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