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Tag: Corruption

There May Be GOP Gold in the Blago Scandal

The troubles of Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich have endangered one of the Democratic Party’s safest U.S. Senate seats.

Posted on Dec 15, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / jburwen

In Illinois, They Love Blagojevich Not

How many Illinois state House members voted Monday to begin impeachment proceedings against Gov. Rod Blagojevich? 113. How many Illinois state House members are there? 113. But in a twist, the governor retains the power to name Barack Obama’s successor, although the U.S. Senate has no intention of recognizing a Blagojevich appointee.

Posted on Dec 15, 2008 READ MORE


Dennis Kucinich
AP photo / Kevin Wolf

Rep. Dennis Kucinich on His Battle With the Banks

Once they were as gods, but the deities of the American banking system are now in ruins, plunged from their pedestals into the maw of taxpayer largesse. There was a time when their power was real. Come with me to Cleveland 30 years ago today.

Posted on Dec 15, 2008 READ MORE


This Isn’t a Time to Be Coy, Mr. Obama

Obama’s statements in the Blagojevich case have been cautious and precise. For most politicians, that would be good enough. For the man who inspired the nation with a promise of “change we can believe in,” it’s not.

Posted on Dec 11, 2008 READ MORE


Gov. Blagojevich Plea Bargain

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Posted on Dec 10, 2008 READ MORE



Warren I. Cohen on China’s ‘Factory Girls’

There’s a revolution underway in Chinese culture as young women flock from villages to factory employment in the cities, leaving traditional values behind.

Posted on Dec 5, 2008 READ MORE



AP file photo

Confronting the Terrorist Within

The world is far more complex than our childish vision of good and evil. We as a nation and a culture have no monopoly on virtue. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, when viewed from the receiving end, are state-sponsored acts of terrorism.

Posted on Dec 1, 2008 READ MORE


Stevens

Ted Stevens Bows Out of Senate

After 40 years in the U.S. Senate, the Alaska Republican bid his Capitol Hill colleagues goodbye on Thursday and was given a standing ovation as he finished his speech.

Posted on Nov 20, 2008 READ MORE



senate.gov

It’s All Over for Stevens

Ted Stevens will not be returning to work in the Senate after surviving there longer than any Republican ever. The convicted felon lost his re-election battle with Democrat Mark Begich by a few thousand votes after leading on election night. The news came on Stevens’ 85th birthday.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE


This Is What He’s Sorry About?

It was nothing Bush did—no decision he made, no policy he pursued, no faith that he placed in ideological dogma—that he finds regrettable. Bush told a cable network, “I regret saying some things I shouldn’t have said” over the course of eight tumultuous years.

Posted on Nov 13, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Al Grillo

Homeland Security Pays Dividends for Alaska

When Sarah Palin brags about the self-reliance of her state, she doesn’t mention the mobile command communications vehicle, bought with federal dollars to help keep her home town of 7,028 safe from terrorism. Thanks in part to an anti-terrorism bonanza, Alaska is one of the greatest per-capita beneficiaries of federal funding among the 50 states.

Posted on Oct 31, 2008 READ MORE


Stevens’ Corruption Was About the Little Things

For a steel sculpture of migrating salmon, amongst other goodies, Ted Stevens—one of the lions of the Senate—was willing to forfeit the kingdom.

Posted on Oct 30, 2008 READ MORE



senate.gov

Stevens Won’t Back Down

Even as his conviction has politicos rethinking Senate filibuster math, Ted Stevens of Alaska says he’ll fight the verdict and continue campaigning for re-election. It’s not all bad news for the longest serving Senate Republican—and you really can’t make this up—the Senate doesn’t ban convicted felons.

Posted on Oct 28, 2008 READ MORE



senate.gov

Stevens Goes Down

Sen. Ted Stevens, the longest-serving Republican in the Senate, has been convicted on seven counts of lying about gifts he received while in office. Unless he steps down, the Republican Party will be running a convicted felon for the Senate in the Nov. 4 election.

Posted on Oct 27, 2008 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons / edited for effect

Populism Arising—but Will It Be the Killer Kind?

The old assumptions and paradigms about capitalism and free markets are dead. A new, virulent populism, still inchoate, is slowly and painfully rising to take their place. This populism will determine the future of the country. It is as likely to be right-wing as left-wing.

Posted on Oct 26, 2008 READ MORE


Obama Doesn’t Need Your Money

After the eye-popping fundraising revelations of the past couple of days, the need that’s far more pronounced is the imperative of acting quickly after November’s election to restore some common sense to the presidential campaign finance system—before we don’t have any system at all.

Posted on Oct 22, 2008 READ MORE


Change Big Donors Can Believe In

The candidates’ coffers are swelling with larger and larger bundles of cash, but don’t hold your breath waiting for the extended television discussions of this, because it’s the broadcasters who profit the most.

Posted on Oct 22, 2008 READ MORE


Ted Stevens
engadget.com

Stevens Defends Himself, Blames Others

Alaska’s Sen. Ted Stevens (the Internet as a “series of tubes” guy) testified in his own defense at his corruption trial Friday, blaming the fact that he received $250,000 in free house renovations and gifts first on his wife, then family friends, and ultimately on the many responsibilities of a U.S. senator.

Posted on Oct 17, 2008 READ MORE



dailykos.com

The House That Todd Palin’s ‘Buddies’ Built

First Dude Todd Palin has said he and some “buddies” built his lakefront home in Wasilla, Alaska, but an investigation by the Village Voice connects the home’s construction, if circumstantially, to the beneficiaries of a local boondoggle championed by his wife.

Posted on Oct 13, 2008 READ MORE


It’s Henry Paulson’s Move

Is Henry Paulson a crony communist or a businessman? The answer could be the difference between economic disaster and recovery.

Posted on Oct 10, 2008 READ MORE



starwoodhotels.com

AIG Execs Enjoy Sun and Fun on Your Dime

What’s $85 billion if you don’t get to spend it? Just days after taxpayers saved AIG from ruin, executives of the insurance giant spent $440,000 pampering themselves at the exclusive St. Regis resort in Monarch Beach, Calif.

Posted on Oct 8, 2008 READ MORE


Saying ‘No Deal’ to This New Deal

The marriage of American capitalism and democracy has always been a Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee affair—stormy and erratic since its hasty wedding. But during the debate over a Wall Street bailout this week, we watched that matrimonial knot unwind into a tangled tale of terror.

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 READ MORE


From Fired U.S. Attorneys to Sarah Palin

A new internal report confirms our fears about the politicization of the Justice Department. That same contempt for government can be found in the current financial crisis as well as the meteoric rise of the former mayor of Wasilla.

Posted on Sep 30, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / bobster1985

Palin Revelations Raising Opposition on the Right

So much for Sarah Palin the reformer: The Alaska governor took home more than $25,000 in gifts during her less than two years in office, including “honorific tributes, expensive artwork and free travel for a family member.” Bombshells like that are rocking the right wing, along with Palin’s embarrassing interviews, which have prompted conservative columnist Kathleen Parker to declare, “My cringe reflex is exhausted.”

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 READ MORE


The Party Police

The Democratic and Republican national conventions have passed, but controversy surrounds how they were funded and how they were run.

Posted on Sep 10, 2008 READ MORE


Dept o' Interior
pnt.gov

Interior Dept. + Financial Hanky-Panky + Sex = Scandal!

Three reports from the Department of Interior’s inspector general found wide-ranging ethics violations between the department’s Minerals Management Service and the energy companies from which it is charged with collecting royalties. Allegations of financial improprieties, illegal gifts, and even the occasional sex- and drug-crazed indiscretion created what the author of the reports called “a culture of ethical failure” within the agency. Ouch.

Posted on Sep 10, 2008 READ MORE


McCain’s Self-Obsessed Campaign

John McCain is no silver-tongued orator, as he proved in St. Paul, but it’s hard not to be stirred when he speaks of wanting only to serve a cause greater than himself—until you take a closer look and see that he’s running one of the most egocentric presidential campaigns in memory.

Posted on Sep 8, 2008 READ MORE


McCain

Mr. McCain Goes to Washington

John McCain, a lobbyist and fixture of Congress for more than 30 years, nominee of the incumbent party and self-proclaimed foot soldier in the Reagan revolution, tried to convince Americans Thursday night that only he could bring real reform to that wretched place called Washington. Updated

Posted on Sep 4, 2008 READ MORE


Abramoff
AP photo / Lynne Sladky

Abramoff Gets Four Years

Jack Abramoff was given four years in prison by a federal judge Thursday—a sentence whittled down from a possible 11 years because he cooperated with investigators —for his part in the fraud and corruption scandal that jolted Washington and landed several other lobbyists and Capitol Hill players in trouble as well.

Posted on Sep 4, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Anja Niedringhaus

The Second Insurgency

Many Iraqis struggle every day to find work, but a shortage of jobs, superimposed on a tradition of using personal connections to do business, has led to what Iraqis complain is an explosion in corruption and graft among their nation’s officials.

Posted on Aug 18, 2008 READ MORE


book covers

Warren I. Cohen on China’s Charm Offensive

The Beijing Olympics are proof that the rule of China’s Communist Party has been validated. Yet human rights abuses continue. What’s really going on? What kind of country is China becoming? Two new books help provide answers.

Posted on Aug 15, 2008 READ MORE


ENTER_ALT_TEXT
AP photo / Jeff Chiu

McCain Adviser Deep in Georgia’s Pocket ... book

It’s just too bad that the only Americans apparently qualified to advise John McCain on how to deal with the world are those hopelessly corrupted by hundreds of thousands of dollars in recent payments from foreign countries, such as beleaguered Georgia. Good thing that guys like Randy Scheunemann (above, left), whose two-man lobbying firm took in a cool million from Georgia since 2004, have a superhuman ability to separate their analysis from any financial considerations.

Posted on Aug 13, 2008 READ MORE


Justice Investigation Moving Toward White House

Investigative reporter Murray Waas has better Justice Department sources than just about anybody, so it’s no surprise he keeps breaking stories on the ongoing mess there. The latest: “The investigation into the firings of nine U.S. attorneys has been extended to encompass allegations that senior White House officials played a role in providing false and misleading information to Congress.”

Posted on Aug 7, 2008 READ MORE


China’s Quest for Olympic Glory

The Chinese authorities’ anxiety that the Olympic Games will be a success reflects their need to find international confirmation of their general political and economic policies of the past 20 years.

Posted on Aug 6, 2008 READ MORE


The High Cost of Home Repair

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Posted on Jul 30, 2008 READ MORE


Israel’s Olmert to Hang It Up

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, beset by accusations of corruption and bribery, announced Wednesday that he will resign after an internal Kadima Party election to choose a new leader on Sept. 17.

Posted on Jul 30, 2008 READ MORE


Stevens
treehugger.com

Alaska Senator’s Home Improvements Lead to Corruption Charges

Sen. Ted Stevens of Alaska was indicted Tuesday on seven felony counts in a corruption scandal stemming from some mutual back-scratching he allegedly engaged in with oil service and construction company VECO. The charges against the Republican include secretly accepting renovations to his vacation home in exchange for official favors to VECO.

Posted on Jul 29, 2008 READ MORE


Halliburton Sign
pjvoice.com

Private Contractors ‘Mismanaged’ $23 Billion in Iraq

A BBC investigation on U.S. war profiteering estimates that $23 billion of taxpayer funds has been “lost, stolen, or not properly accounted for in Iraq.”

Posted on Jun 11, 2008 READ MORE


Rezko Goes Down

A day after Barack Obama made history, an unfortunate figure from his past was back in the headlines. Antoin “Tony” Rezko, a former Obama fundraiser, was convicted of 16 corruption charges. Obama said he was “saddened,” but took the opportunity to get in another plug for change: “This isn’t the Tony Rezko I knew, but now he has been convicted by a jury on multiple charges that once again shine a spotlight on the need for reform.”

Posted on Jun 5, 2008 READ MORE


Olmert
AP photo / Lawrence Jackson

Olmert: ‘The Iranian Threat Must Be Stopped’

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert issued a warning across the ocean to Iran during a visit to Washington Tuesday, urging the international community to convince Tehran that pursuing a nuclear weapons program would be a really, really bad idea.

Posted on Jun 3, 2008 READ MORE


The Ehuds
AP photo / Dan Balilty

Barak to Olmert: Get Outta Here

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak called for Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to resign or temporarily step down from his post in the midst of investigations into allegedly illegal donations to Olmert’s campaign. Barak threatened to pull the Labor Party out of the coalition government that supports Olmert unless he removes himself from the “day-to-day management of the government.”

Posted on May 28, 2008 READ MORE


Defense Auditors Can’t Keep Up

Thanks to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the privatization of the military and the surge in defense spending since 9/11, individual Pentagon auditors now have to keep track of more than three times as much money as they did 10 years ago. Because of limited resources, the Defense Department inspector general revealed in a recent report, about half of the military’s $316 billion weapons budget went under the radar last year.

Posted on May 28, 2008 READ MORE


book cover
press.princeton.edu

Chalmers Johnson on Our ‘Managed Democracy’

Sheldon Wolin’s new book offers a controversial but ultimately convincing diagnosis of how America’s democracy has succumbed to an unacknowledged totalitarian temptation.

Posted on May 15, 2008 READ MORE


Mythmaking and Democracy

Republicans have had great success in convincing Americans that “voter fraud” is a grave and growing threat to the republic, but the exact crime that they speak of is almost nonexistent.

Posted on Apr 30, 2008 READ MORE


Doan Resigns
vassar.edu

The Gravy Train Stops Here

It’s the end of an era for the friends of General Services Administration chief Lurita Alexis Doan, who resigned from her post Tuesday following years of allegations of corruption and other inappropriate uses of power. Doan’s reign over the government’s chief contracting agency was riddled with contract handouts and examples of using her appointed position for political (read Republican) purposes.

Posted on Apr 30, 2008 READ MORE


memorial
Flickr / Kevindooley

The $3-Trillion War

Harvard scholar Linda Bilmes speaks about the book on the Iraq war’s costs that she wrote with Joseph Stiglitz. The two former Truthdiggers of the Week have been working hard to uncover even more hidden expenses for the war, which they estimate will cost the taxpayers and their children trillions of dollars.

Posted on Apr 16, 2008 READ MORE


The Long, Sorrowful Ludlow Legacy

A straight line can be drawn between the 1914 labor massacre in Colorado and today’s killing fields in Colombia. And one of the villains in both cases is the U.S. government.

Posted on Apr 10, 2008 READ MORE


Failing the Troops

The same kinds of mismanagement and dysfunction that are at work in Iraq continue to plague veterans when they seek medical care at home.

Posted on Apr 9, 2008 READ MORE


Are We Closer to ?Victory??

Gen. David H. Petraeus, commander of the American forces in Iraq, is more candid than his publicity agents. Unlike the senators and editorial writers who claim that the glorious “surge” should be hailed as one of the most successful military campaigns in history, he warns that the escalation’s achievements are mixed at best.

Posted on Apr 9, 2008 READ MORE


Confessions of an Economic Hit Man

The real John McCain is re-emerging: a politician who rakes in big bucks by being a hired gun for the corporations.

Posted on Apr 3, 2008 READ MORE


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