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Media Hits September 2011 RSS Feed
Richard Nixon grand jury testimony to be unsealed

Talking Points Memo: Richard Nixon's Watergate grand jury testimony to be unsealed - A transcript of former President Richard Nixon's testimony on the Watergate scandal before a grand jury in 1975 is going to be unsealed thanks to a lawsuit filed by Public Citizen on behalf of an historian.

Super PACs gear up for 2012 election

The Olympian: Super PACs channel flood of money in 2012 elections - Relaxed campaign spending rules unleashed a torrent of cash in the 2010 elections. In 2012, it could be a deluge.

Media take wrong angle with oil speculation

Huffington Post: Media squawked when it should have jumped on oil market speculation coverage - After firebrand Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders leaked confidential data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to the Wall Street Journal last month -- data that dramatically illustrated how speculators were dominating the oil futures market during the 2008 spike in oil prices -- other news outlets jumped on the story.

Climate Change's effect on Texas

Salon: One Republican candidate's hellfire - George Bush Park burst into flames on Sept. 13, one month to the day after Texas Gov. Rick Perry announced his candidacy for president of the United States.

The 'Evil' Addict

New York Times: Drugs, Risk and The Myth of the 'Evil' Addict - My column on making Naloxone available over-the-counter to reverse overdoses drew many plaudits and two main strands of criticism.

FDA may loosen conflict of interest policy

NorthJersey.com: FDA panel should have pharamceutical expertise - THE HEAD of the Food and Drug Administration recently indicated that the agency may consider loosening a conflict of interest policy that restricts scientists with industry financial ties from advising U.S. regulators.

Mica fights new trucking regulations

Trucking Info: Mica says he will challenge any changes to hours rule - Rep. John Mica, Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, warned President Obama that he will challenge andy changes to the current hours of service rule.

Doctors and pharamaceutical companies

Chicago Tribune: Doctors and pharmaceutical companies - I read with interest the article on huge payments by pharmaceutical companies to doctors so that those doctors will educate colleagues about certain medicines.

Reopen malpractice database

Kansas City Star: Groups urge Sebelius to reopen malpractice databank - Six leading journalism organizations are calling on Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to immediately restore public access to a federal database that contains statistical information on the malpractice and disciplinary histories of thousands of doctors nationwide.

Objectivity of doctors

U.S. Daily Politics: Pharmaceutical company payments to doctors raise ethical concerns -  We expect our doctors to "first do no harm" and to provide treatment based on what's in our best interest.

Taxing the weathly

St. Louis Beacon: Coincidence taxes credulity - The effective investigator learns to distrust coincidence.

E.P.A. is Perry's favorite target

New York Times: E.P.A. is Perry's favorite target - Gov. Rick Perry of Texas has built a political career running against Washington, and no agency more symbolizes what he considers the meddlesome and economy-choking evils of the federal government than the Environmental Protection Agency.

GOP against protecting workers

The Huffington Post: House Republicans' Labor Budget Cuts Rules That Protect Rooftop Workers From Falling, Coal Miners From Coal Dust - In addition to blocking President Obama's health care law and slashing funding for job training, the budget plan presented by House Republicans for health and labor programs this week would scuttle several worker safety protections put forth by the Department of Labor.

Free trade won't help bourbon

Bradenton: Bourbon distillers focus on South Korea free trade debate - Distillers of bourbon -- Kentucky's trademark spirit -- are hopeful that a long-stymied free-trade agreement with South Korea will boost U.S. liquor exports.

New rules for trade association lobbyists
The Non-Profit Quarterly: Trade associations targeted by new Obama administration regulation - As Politico puts it, “President Barack Obama isn’t finished with K Street.”


Weak EPA regulations in Texas
Statesman: Lively debates about environmental rules mark news festival - The wrapper of polite disagreement on some key issues came off at a series of weekend public policy panels at the University of Texas.


Corportations buy off Rick Perry

McClatchy: Has 'crony capitalism' tainted Perry's campaign for president? - In 2008, Larry Soward, one of three commissioners on Texas' environmental regulatory agency, cast the lone dissenting vote against licensing a controversial low-level nuclear disposal site in far West Texas.

TRAIN Act non-supporters

The Hill: GOP wrongly claims greens' support for EPA delay bill - The House Energy and Commerce Committee's GOP leadership inaccurately claimed Thursday that a number of green groups support legislation to delay – perhaps indefinitely – a pair of Environmental Protection Agency power plant pollution regulations.

Wall Street Vampires

Huffington Post: Wall Street Vampires - Vampires. Thieves of the night. As sunlight is said to be deadly to them, these mythical creatures venture out to drain the blood from their innocent victims only when it is dark outside.

The truth about trade agreements

The Plain Dealer: Sen. Rob Portman says trade agreement with S. Korea helped EU exports jump at U.S. expense - The day before President Barack Obama announced a $447 billion proposal to boost the economy and create jobs, Portman joined a group of GOP Senators Sept. 7, 2011, at a Capitol Hill news conference to suggest that Obama could create jobs quickly by sending pending trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama to Congress, where all three would likely pass with bipartisan support.

Bribing polititians to get contracts

Roll Call: Holman: Pay-to-Play Will Thrive With Budget Debate - The debt ceiling compromise, in which a super committee of 12 Members of Congress will determine the fate of the federal budget, has elevated pay-to-play politics in government contracting to new heights.

Illinois power plant becoming cleaner
Journal Courier: FutureGen: Cost estimates sent for review - The first phase in determining whether a multi-billion project moves forward in Morgan County is up for federal review.


Regulation protects people

Safety.BLR: 5 Health & Safety Regs Have Saved 1000s of Workers, Group Says - Five health and safety regulations that were largely opposed by industry have saved thousands of lives and prevented tens of thousands of injuries, according to an analysis by Washington-based Public Citizen.


AT&T brided politicians

Bloomberg News: AT&T Gave $963,275 to U.S. Lawmakers Urging Approval of T-Mobile USA Deal - Representative Pete Olson and 99 fellow House Republicans signed a letter yesterday urging the Obama administration to resolve a government lawsuit and let AT&T Inc. (T) buy T-Mobile USA Inc. 

The battle against the industrial North

OEN: Heroes of the Antiglobalization Movement - A tutor at our local polytech has asked me to do a 90 minute class in November on the antiglobalization movement.

Slow progress for trade agreements

ICTSD: Trans-Pacific Talks Inch Forward at Chicago Meeting - The eighth round of talks for the proposed nine-country Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement showed movement in several areas, according to reports, with negotiators now ready to address “sensitive areas.”

Corruption in Texas?

The Washington Post - Who is really leveling “cronyism” charges at Perry? - In a post today entitled “Perry’s system of patronage and cronyism,” Jennifer Rubin highlights a scathing report by Texans for Public Justice entitled “Crony Capitalism: The Republican Governors Association in the Perry Years.”

Blocking AT&T's monopoly ambitions

BGR: Heavy with $963,275 in AT&T donations, lawmakers push for T-Moble merger approval - The Department of Justice recently filed a lawsuit against AT&T in an effort to block its planned acquisition of T-Mobile USA, but that has not stopped 100 lawmakers from signing a letter pushing the government to settle the suit and approve the merger.

Officials asked to reopen databases

The Kansas City Star: Reopen database on doctors, groups urge top officials - In a letter to key members of Congress and to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, six prominent journalism organizations are asking that a database containing statistical information on doctors’ malpractice histories be made public again.

Regulations could spur growth

Politico: Report: Some regs could spur growth - Federal regulations may not be so bad after all.

Weight-loss drugs attempting to get approval

All Voices: Weight-loss pill manufactures still attempting to gain FDA approval - Manufactures of pills face tough challenges when attempting to receive FDA approval and at times they get rejected but this does not keep them from trying.

TEAM hopes to stop counterfeiting

SecuringPharma: USTR wants stronger anti-counterfeiting measures in Asia-Pacific -  The US government has launched a new strategic initiative called Trade Enhancing Access to Medicines (TEAM), which includes plans to work with Asia-Pacific trade partners on strengthening anti-counterfeiting measures.

Lawmakers triple their side income since 2006

Wall Street Journal: Lawmakers' side jobs help bolster their paychecks - The national economy is struggling to keep its head above water. On Capitol Hill, it's a different story.

Tylenol shortages in some areas

Wall Street Journal: Tylenol supplies low for flu season - A staple of the American medicine cabinet may be hard to come by this fall because of a slew of recalls -- but that's all the more reason to take a closer look at the cold and flu medications you stock at home.

Public Interest Law

Forbes: Public interest law, then and now - In 1914, the NAACP decided that it needed to expand its efforts to achieve racial equality, so it filed its first friend-of-the-court brief. With this modest step, the era of public interest law began.

WTO rules against 'Dolphin Safe' labeling

International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development: Mixed victory for Mexico as WTO rules on "Dolphin Safe" labelling - A WTO panel on Thursday found fault with the United States’ “dolphin safe” labelling practice for tuna products, ruling that the label meant to inform consumers on the use of dolphin-friendly fishing practices was unnecessarily trade restrictive.

HHS takes down malpractice website

Consumer Affairs: Feds take down malpractive database - For more than 15 years, researchers, reports and policymakers have been able to access an online database that anonymously tracks physicians’ records of malpractice, medical errors and medical discipline.

Free trade agreement in Panama

Guatemala News: Panama: free trade tax haven - Panama is the sink where the dirtiest money is laundered, writes Nicholas Shaxson, author of Treasure Islands: Uncovering the Damage of Offshore Banking and Tax Havens.

Teamsters suing over Mexican trucks

Truth About Trade: Teamsters sucking over Mexican trucking dispute - The Teamsters and activist group Public Citizen are suing the Obama Administration to stop the agreement between the US and Mexico on cross-border trucking access under NAFTA.

California not disciplining doctors

Clinical Advisor: Watchdog group claims California not disciplining dangerous docs - The watchdog group Public Citizen has alerted California Gov. Jerry Brown that the state's medical board has failed to take action against more than 700 health care providers who were disciplined for wrongdoing between September 1990 and the end of 2009.

Law suits filed on file-sharers

Ars Technica: How a trouble West Virginia lawyer foisted a Teen Anal Nightmare on the nation - In September 2010, West Coast Productions—maker of such films as Teen Anal Nightmare 2 and Juicy White Anal Booty 4—paired up with West Virginia lawyer Ken Ford to file a set of mass lawsuits against online file-sharers.

Obama's efforts decrease transparency

The Nonprofit Quarterly: New report says Obama lobbyist policy actually undermines transparency - The organizations that pay attention to money in politics (such as the Center for Responsive Politics, which publishes the Open Secrets Blog) have taken note of a new report by the Center for Lobbying in the Public Interest (CLPI).

Federal Trade Agreements will cut jobs

AFL-CIO: Corporations backing new trade deals outsource 18,600 jobs - Congress will soon consider three so-called free trade agreements (FTAs) between the United States and Korea, Colombia and Panama.

BCRA's failure to blame

Campaign and Elections: Is Citizen's United really to blame for the spending? -It is time to recognize that the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA), otherwise known as McCain-Feingold, was a failure.

Cigarette label suit

The Associated Press: Health groups weigh in on cigarette label suit - Several public health groups are weighing in on a lawsuit over graphic cigarette warning labels that include the sewn-up corpse of a smoker, saying the federal government has a strong interest in more effectively informing people about the effects of tobacco and current warnings aren't sufficient.

Farm worker safety

The Nation: Can education consumers help make farm labor fair? - This summer in California, as legions of migrants culled America's bounty from sun-scorched fields, Governor Jerry Brown put the right to unionize even further out of their reach.

GATS needs updating
iPolitics: WTO forum on trade of financial services highlights need to modernize GATS - There have been revolutionary changes in the trade of financial services since the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) came into force in 1995.


Regulations create jobs
Politico: Some regs could spur growth - Challenging a flood of firsthand business testimonials about the burden of federal red tape, new research by environmental and consumer groups suggests some regulations might even lay the groundwork for a lasting economic recovery.

Help for those whose jobs moved overseas
The Hill: Obama push for TAA extension doesn’t calm organized labor on free-trade deals - President Obama’s push for renewed assistance for workers who lose their jobs due to trade isn’t diminishing organized labor’s opposition to the three trade deals he wants Congress to approve.


Increase in corruption reporting
MSNBC:   More workers willing to blow the whistle on their employerEmployees are increasingly willing these days to blow the whistle when they see fraud, corruption and general unlawful behavior at their employers.    


AT&T seeks to destroy US jobs
The Daily Feed: AT&T: The Tommy Flanagan of Telecom - Last month, Rep. Heath Shuler, Democrat of North Carolina, urged President Obama to ignore the Justice Department lawsuit aiming to block AT&T's takeover of T-Mobile, arguing, as consumer advocacy group Public Citizen explained, "that the deal was needed as a boost to the economy."


Lobbying activity surrounds super committee

AMERICAblog: WTO says US measures to reduce teen smoking violate WTO rules - This pretty much speaks for itself. Note the role of the WTO as an anti-environmental-regulation entity.

'Dolphin-Safe' tuna label ruled illegal
The Daily Green: World Trade Organization deals a blow to a popular eco-labeling program that works. - The effort to stop the slaughter of dolphins in tuna nets has been a successful consumer-led movement, but it's in jeopardy, according to press reports.


Expanding the ban on gifts from lobbyists

The Hill: New Rule Would Expand Tight Obama Lobbying Rules to Federal Workers - A new regulation proposed this week by the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) would prohibit all federal government employees from accepting any gifts from lobbyists

Washington Whistleblower Assembly this Monday and Tuesday!

Daily Whistleblower News:  - The 2011 Whistleblower assembly takes place next week on September 19 and 20. The theme this year is "Whistleblowers Protecting the Public."

EPA requirements won't put Texas in the dark

Chron.com: EPA won’t “force the lights to go out” in Texas with emissions rule, official says -  A top EPA official today rebuffed concerns that some Texas power plants could shut down because providers do not have enough time to prepare for new requirements to reduce toxic emissions that cross state lines.    

Speculation drives up oil prices

Thinkprogress.org: Leaked documents reveal major speculators behind 2008 oil price shock: hedge funds, Koch, big banks, oil companies - Last month, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) leaked confidential data about oil speculation to a number of media outlets, including the Wall Street Journal.


Corporate Spending Disclosure

WNYC.org: The Biggest Spending Corporations Disclose Less about Political Activity This week, Michele Bachmann charged that “crony capitalism” can explain Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s support of a mandate for the HPV vaccine in Texas, a policy that was later overturned by the Texas legislature

Texas power plants' deadline corrected

MySA: A top Environmental Protection Agency official on Thursday rebuffed concerns that some Texas power plants could shut down because they might not have enough time to prepare for a new federal limit on toxic emissions that cross state lines.

Panama the best place to launder money
The Epoch Times: Panama and the Cost of Tax Havens - “Panama is the sink where the dirtiest money is laundered,” writes Nicholas Shaxson, author of Treasure Islands: Uncovering the Damage of Offshore Banking and Tax Havens.


Advisory panels calls for tougher regulations

Wall Street Journal: FDA panel backs plans for premarket studies of organ-prolapse mesh devices - A federal advisory panel Thursday called for more clinical studies and tougher regulation of certain surgical mesh products used to treat pelvic organ prolapse, an often painful condition that affects thousands of women.

Sen. Patty Murray under fire

Fox News: Supercommittee Co-Chief Murray under fire as deficit talks begin -  Washington Sen. Patty Murray, who was picked by Majority Leader Harry Reid to co-chair the deficit-reduction supercommittee, is taking criticism from both sides of the political aisle. 

Surgical mesh manufacturers agree to meet panel

Bloomberg: J&J Vaginal surgical mesh faces FDA panel as number of lawsuits increase - Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) and rival makers of transvaginal meshes told Food and Drug Administration advisers they agreed on the need for more safety studies of the implants as well as labeling changes to warn of potential risks.

Disclosure of campaign contributions

Talking Points Memo: Post-Citizens United, SEC should force political disclosure, report argues - With the 2012 political money machine now in full post-Labor Day gear, watchdog groups are trying to turn up the pressure on businesses and unions to disclose every dollar they spend on behalf of candidates, even though that kind of transparency isn't required by law. 

Republicans attack EPA regulations

San Francisco Chronicle: Republicans attack EPA regulations as job killers -The Republican prescription for job growth, shared by tonight's presidential debaters and Republicans in Congress, is to dismantle regulations proposed by the Obama administration, especially the Environmental Protection Agency, claiming these are a key culprit in widespread unemployment.

Fulfilling the promise of 'Citizens United'

Washington Post: Fulfilling the promise of 'Citizens United' - The Supreme Court’s January 2010 Citizens United decision to permit corporations to spend unlimited sums to influence federal elections was premised on a pair of yet-unfulfilled promises: Corporations would disclose their expenditures, and shareholders would be able to police such spending.

Republicans oppose U.S. Consumer Bureau nomination

Bloomberg: Republicans vow opposition to U.S. Consumer Bureau nomination - Senate Republicans hearing testimony from President Barack Obama’s nominee to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said they wouldn’t confirm anyone to run the agency without changes to its structure.

New child labor proposals

Iowa Independent: New child labor proposals will impact some family farms - In its first such move since 1970, the U.S. Department of Labor is taking aim at risky exposures for minors, and the proposed rules could spell changes for family farming operations.

NAFTA of the Pacific

Huffington Post: Labor Day showdown: can advocates stop 'NAFTA of the Pacific'? - This Labor Day, the Pacific Rim will wash into the Midwest's flagship city, and activists will confront the tides of global commerce with a demand for global economic justice.

Teamsters fight Mexican-truck plan

Wall Street Journal: Teamsters sue over Mexican-truck plan - The Teamsters union filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration on Friday seeking to block the government's plan to allow Mexican trucks back into the U.S., in a sign of the growing rift between unions and the administration over trade.

Dozens of companies pay CEO more than IRS

In These Times: The great corporate tax swindle: dozens of companies pay CEO more than IRS - America's CEOs are truly in a league of their own when it comes to pay and power. 

Obama's executive order gets push

Politico: Obama executive order gets push from interest groups - Public interest groups are growing increasingly frustrated with the Obama administration’s indecision regarding a draft executive order that, as conceived, would force government contractors to reveal new details about their politicking.

Oil speculation debate

Continental Capital Investment Ltd: Oil speculation debate: Public Citizen demands disclosure - Commodities traders, unlike big buyers and sellers of stocks, have never had to disclose their holdings publicly. But that hidebound system is coming under attack.

FDA questions breast implants safety

CBSNews: FDA questions studies of breast implant safety - A panel of expert advisors to the FDA has been asked to solve a mystery: What happened to thousands of women who enrolled in studies designed to evaluate rare complications that might arise years after they received silicone gel breast implants?

Solar power firm ceases operations

Los Angeles Times: Solar panel firm Solyndra to cease operations - The California solar panel manufacturer that received a high-profile $535-million Energy Department loan guarantee said it was ceasing operations, laying of 1,100 workers and preparing to file for bankruptcy protection.

Trucking Regulations

Bloomberg: Trucking rules called 'radioactive' - President Barack Obama’s inclusion of two proposed rules on truckers’ driving hours on a list of the seven most expensive pending U.S. regulations makes them so politically sensitive they may not survive, according to an industry group.

Governor Rick Perry's campaign funds

Washington Post: Rick Perry's donors fare well, Texas-style - Just before Labor Day weekend, two San Antonio multi-millionaires will co-chair a $25,000-a-couple country club fundraiser for Republican Gov. Rick Perry, an event meant to persuade business leaders beyond Texas to help their friend win the White House.

Groups Turn the Heat Up on OSHA

EHS Today: Groups Turn the Heat Up on OSHAGroups Turn the Heat Up on OSHA - Saying that OSHA has dragged its feet on enacting a standard to protect workers from heat exposure, thereby allowing hundreds of workers to die of heat-related illness and thousands to be seriously injured, Public Citizen and other groups have sent OSHA Administrator Dr. David Michaels a 50-page petition requesting such a standard.

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