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November 2011 Media Hits RSS Feed
Global Trade Watch explores the President's positions
Truthout : Obama's "Free Trade" Follies: A Conversation With Global Trade Watch - To figure out how trade politics have shaped up in this way, I spoke with Todd Tucker, research director of Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch. Tucker, along with Global Trade Watch director Lori Wallach, recently wrote in The American Prospect, "As he gears up for a difficult re-election campaign, President Obama risks losing key swing states that he won in 2008 because of a recent flip-flop on trade commitments."


Preventing safeguards
The Washington Post : GOP takes aim at process of crafting regulations - “If you’re worried about a particular regulation, the solution is not to fundamentally undermine the regulatory process,” said Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen.


The revolving door
ABC News : Newt Gingrich not technically a lobbyist, but... - According to the watchdog group Public Citizen, between 1998 and 2006, 43 percent of all members of Congress took lobbying jobs after leaving Congress, landing positions with an average annual salary of $2 million.


A win for special interests?

Huffington Post : House passes bill to end public election funding - Groups seeking to improve the election system, including Common Cause, Democracy 21, Public Citizen and the League of Women Voters, urged the defeat of the Harper legislation, saying public financing has become even more important after the 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court decision that eased restrictions on corporate spending in political campaigns.


Big pharma kills again

VT Digger : Young woman's death leads to questions about popular contraceptive known as YAZ - YAZ has been the suspected cause for deaths around the country, according to the Public Citizens Health Research Group.  Dr. Sidney Wolfe, director of the watchdog organization, said, “there have been a number of published studies not connected with the company that have found problems with the product.”

Starbucks takes advantage of coffee consumers
The PopTort : Starbucks Big Legal Mess Up - Four consumer groups - Public Citizen, Alliance for Justice, National Association of Consumer Advocates and National Consumers League – sent a letter to Starbucks this week and have now launched an educational and action campaign against the company for its outrageous forced arbitration and outright class actions ban, which it has imposed on all pre-paid gift card users.


Patient unknowingly signed away his rights
ABC News : Dentist Threatens to Sue Patient for Negative Yelp Review - Robert Lee went into Dr. Stacy Makhnevich’s New York dentist office for a sore tooth, but the year that followed turned into what one Public Citizen senior lawyer called an “unconscionable practice.”


Vioxx left a trail of devastation
CounterPunch : The VIOXX Settlement Merck Pays a Pittance for Mass Deaths - The systemic corruption is getting worse. In the 15 years between 1991 and 2005, according to Public Citizen, drug companies paid the government $5 billion in penalties and settlements in connection with kickbacks and false claims.


Maxine Waters may take Frank's spot on committee

The Hill: Maxine Waters in line to take over from Frank on Financial Services Committee - “The financial industry is important, even pivotal, to the economy,” Bartlett Naylor, a financial policy advocate at Public Citizen, told The Hill.

Proof of harm in lawsuits

Reuters: Supreme Court asks if lawsuits require proof of harm - Edwards was supported by 11 states, the National Consumers League and the consumer advocacy organization Public Citizen.

Hiding the bribes

The Washington Times : Most Republican bundlers still sitting on sidelines -This year, every candidate except Mr. Obama has hidden the names. The Times tracked past bundlers’ personal preferences by analyzing records from the Federal Election Commission, Public Citizen and the Center for Responsive Politics. 

More on Watergate?

International Business Times : Richard Nixon's Grand Jury Testimony: More Heat Than Light - The resulting 278 page, 26-folders worth of testimony, remained classified. It came to light only after D.C. Federal District Judge Royce C. Lamberth III granted a petition by Watergate historian Prof. Stanley Kutler and the interest group Public Citizen.

Protecting anonymous speech

Tech Dirt : Sorry, Rabbi, Your Second Attempt To Uncover Anonymous Critics Rejected Too - Public Citizen stepped in to question this, and the court has quashed the subpoena -- and did so in a very broad (and useful) manner.

Big business upset that some politicians are not for sale

USA Today : Proposed lobbying restrictions upset business groups - Government watchdog groups support the proposed rules, and some are urging the administration to go even further and expand the ban to other nonprofits. "It's a move in the right direction," said Craig Holman of Public Citizen.

Corporations want to steal from the poor

Roll Call : K Street Files: No End for K Street Deficit Lobbying - "We will be working hard to explain to people that these bills aren't as innocent as they seem," said Lisa Gilbert, deputy director of Congress Watch at Public Citizen, which is helping spearhead the Coalition for Sensible Safeguards.

Banks try to purchase lawmakers

The Telegraph : Banks find extra money to hire lobbyists - "That lobbying and political spending is a large figure, but it's a small investment to protect half a billion dollars," said Bartlett Naylor, financial policy advocate for consumer group Public Citizen.

More corporate bribery

Roll Call : Wall Street Hosts Visit for Hill Staffers - “We just wanted to be sure we got rid of the junkets — the long trips and the expensive ones,” said Public Citizen’s Craig Holman, who helped draft the current travel restrictions. 

Spreading the word about worst pills

The San Francisco Chronicle : The Consumer Justice Foundation Alerts Consumers that Watchdog Group Public Citizen Placed Actos on "Do Not Use" List Due To Actos Side Effects Including Bladder Cancer -   The CJF Web site can be found at the URL www.sideeffectsrx.com, and the CJF hereby alerts the public that the consumer watchdog group known as Public Citizen has placed Actos, a diabetes medication, on its "Do Not Use" list because of the alleged links between Actos and the development of bladder cancer.

Bad Doctors in Maryland

The Baltimore Sun : Audit criticizes state medical board for backlog of complaintsIn a recent national ranking by the advocacy group Public Citizen, Maryland was 38th among states for disciplining doctors in 2008-2010 with 2.55 disciplinary actions per 1,000 physicians.

No more corporate favors

Financial Times : Support grows for Congress insider trading ban“It’s exciting – this legislation is finally moving,” said Craig Holman, a congressional expert at Public Citizen, the consumer watchdog.

OSHA stands in way of patient safety

American Medical News : Organizations respond to OSHA's decision not to oversee resident work hours - But consumer advocacy group Public Citizen called the decision regrettable and asked OSHA in a Nov. 3 letter to limit resident work hours.

Where's the beef?

Los Angeles Times: WTO panel rules against U.S. country-of-origin labels - The Washington-based advocacy group Public Citizen denounced the ruling as another ill-advised WTO move against popular U.S. consumer and environmental measures, like the WTO's decisions on U.S. "dolphin-safe" labels and on a U.S. ban on some candy and flavored cigarettes.

Plutocrats complain about political gift rules

The American Independent : Proposed ban on lobbyist gifts causes firestorm, review extended - Craig Holman, government affairs lobbyist for Public Citizen, a good government group that supports the bill, says that assessment is not accurate. “In no way does this prevent members of congress and staffers and others to have communications with trade associations and others,” he said. He says that trade groups would have to charge admittance fees but that federal employees would still be free to attend.

New laws will make protecting Americans difficult

OMB Watch : Coalition for Sensible Safeguards: Regulatory Accountability Act Puts the Public in Harm’s Way -   Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen added, “The RAA aims to hamstring consumer, environmental and other regulating agencies and empower Big Business to stop agencies from issuing new rules.

Ending the bribery of politicians

Get-money.info : Why Dylan Ratigan’s “Get Money Out” Campaign Gets it Right - Public Citizen, the consumer advocacy organization first founded by Ralph Nader in 1971, has proposed a Constitutional Amendment to reverse Citizens United by declaring that corporations and other artificial business organizations, other than media corporations, are not persons with First Amendment rights of free speech under the First Amendment.

The corruption of Congress

Dow Jones Market Watch : Congressional insider trading: The story sticks - Because, as Craig Holman, legislative representative at government watchdog group Public Citizen explained, the Securities and Exchange Act does not apply to members of Congress.

Occupiers fight corporate power

Gather.com : Occupy Movement Will Not Be Silenced or Stopped - Public Citizen salutes, celebrates and supports Occupy Wall Street and the Occupy movement.

Protecting the environment in Texas

Texas Monthly : Up in the Air - Since no one from the EPA was present at the hastily called meeting, veteran lobbyist Tom “Smitty” Smith, of Public Citizen, a longtime critic of Luminant’s aging coal plants, defended the rule.

Ignoring environmental regulations

TMCnet.com : Online Retailers Fail to Disclose Required Energy Efficiency Information, Groups Contend -  EarthJustice issued the following news release: Earthjustice, on behalf of its client Public Citizen, yesterday called on the Federal Trade Commission to initiate enforcement action and levy fines against two online retailers for violations of energy efficiency labeling rules alleged in a letter to the FTC.

Proof that the government is an auction

Huffington Post : Jack Abramoff As Reformer Raises Caution In Former Foes - "Jack is one of my heroes," Craig Holman, legislative representative for the reform group Public Citizen, said tongue-in-cheek.

"Getting Steamed to Overcome Corporatism"

The Washington Post : Ralph Nader’s new book speaks to protesters - Ralph Nader, the legendary consumer advocate, political activist and repeat presidential candidate, has a new book out later this month that could add some heat to the national protests inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Abbott's monopoly threatened

The Guardian : Global Campaign Launched Against Pharma Company - Public Citizen in the USA is leading the charge, but campaigners in Brazil, India, Vietnam, Indonesia, Colombia, Thailand, the Netherlands and elsewhere are all taking action – mostly by challenging Abbott’s monopoly in their own legal systems.

Blocking big pharma from hording medicine

PMLIVE : Abbott targeted over pricing of its Aids drug Kaletra - Public Citizen wants governments of poorer countries to issue compulsory licences for generic copies of Kaletra (lopinavir+ritonavir).

Health officials ignore freedom of the press

Kansas City Star: After protests, national doctor database reopens — with a catch - “The exclusion from access by reporters doing important investigative work…is unacceptable,” said patient safety advocate Sidney Wolfe, director of Public Citizen’s Health Research Group.

Trucking rules changed

Gaston Gazette: Trucking, safety groups play chicken over new rules - The agency resisted until 2009, when Public Citizen agreed to suspend a lawsuit while the federal organization revisited the issue.

Guam representative spends funds

Pacific Daily News: Exploring Bordello's expenses - Craig Holman, congressional ethics expert at Public Citizen, a watchdog group, said that while such uses are legal, members need to be careful.

Crestor poses problems

AboutLawsuits.com: Crestor injury reports higher than other statins - In 2005, the non-profit consumer advocacy group, Public Citizen, filed a petition with the FDA calling for a Crestor recall to be issued due to the potential risk of health problems with Crestor and because there appear to be safer alternatives on the market.

Chief of Staff reduces workload

The Nation: Wall Street's man in the White House gets demoted - The Chamber of Commerce lauded his hiring, while MoveOn and Public Citizen bashed it.

Bundled campaign contributions

Independent Voter Network: Big, Bundled donors filling Obama and Romey campaign coffers - In 2007, the year before Barack Obama was elected President, the liberal advocacy organization Public Citizen’s “White House For Sale” website was actively seeking change in what it viewed as onerous lobbying activities, particularly bundling.

Politico's Hermain Cain source

Larrysinclair: Is DC attorney Joel P. Bennett Politico's Herman Cain Source? - One only need look at Politico.com’s history of publishing attack pieces on behalf of the Obama camp as well as attorneys who represent Politico reporters (Ben Smith’s June 18, 2008 article repeating completely untrue and unsupported claims against Obama accuser Larry Sinclair originally made by Smith attorney Paul Allen Levy of Public Citizens Litigation Group; Democratic Underground.com users; DailyKos) and you will see the Herman Cain story has the same “attorney” favor smell to it.

Moyers delivers keynote address

Drivenpolitics: Highlights from Bill Moyers' keynote at Public Citizen's 40th Anniversary Gala October 20, 2011 Washington DC - On October 20, 2011  journalism icon, Bill Moyers delivered a keynote at the 40th of Public Citizen, the non-profit consumer rights advocacy group.

Newspaper ethics not followed

The Bay Citizen: How Chronicle column promotes Ed Lee - “This is an effective advertising gimmick for Willie Brown,” said Craig Holman, government affairs lobbyist for Public Citizen, a consumer rights group. “The benefits are very direct. He advertises himself as being a kingmaker in San Francisco. Most serious businesses that might have any issues pending before the city realize he would be a very, very valuable player to hire. With that image, he would also come at a very high price tag."

CAT (Civics Aptitude Test)

Single Payer Action: Time to take your civics aptitude test - Education about our shared civics culture, about the activists who are seeking to make our country a better place to live, about the laws and institutions that keep this country from spinning into the abyss.

Expanding internet names

BusinessWeek: P&G spurns .pampers as brands balk at expanding internet names - Two Washington-based government watchdogs, the Center for Responsive Politics and Public Citizen, have raised concerns about the departure of the naming group’s former chairman, Peter Dengate Thrush.

Bundled donors backing 2012 elections

Independent Voter Network: Big, bundled donors filling Obama and Romney campaign coffers - In 2007, the year before Barack Obama was elected President, the liberal advocacy organization Public Citizen’s “White House For Sale” website was actively seeking change in what it viewed as onerous lobbying activities, particularly bundling.

Politicians are money launderers

Huffington Post: People "Are Occupying Wall Street Because Wall Street Has Occupied the Country" - Journalist Bill Moyers was the keynote speaker at the 40th anniversary celebration of Ralph Nader's Public Citizen. In his speech, Moyers discusses the Occupy Wall Street movement and chronicles the history of America's middle class.

Who is buying our government?

Huffington Post: 'Campaign Finance Scandal' At FEC: Reform Groups Call For Obama To Step Up - Craig Holman, legislative representative for Public Citizen, explained that the current FEC gridlock stems from the opposition to campaign finance laws by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

Trucking rule advances

Truckinginfo.com: House rule advances to Office of Management and Budget - The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is revising the rule in order to resolve a long-running legal fight with Public Citizen, the Teamsters Union and other groups.

Congress members take private trips despite rules

United Press International: Congress' trips rise despite ethics rules - "These are the travel junkets of yore," said Craig Holman of the watchdog group Public Citizen, which lobbied for the travel restrictions. "It's a recurring situation. You get some good reforms on the books, and after a few years, people start trying to get around them."

Energy company donations contribute to deregulation

The American Independent: Upton's anti-regulation flip led by campaign contributions: As outside campaign contributions to Upton grow, so does his importance on the national stage, said Tyler Slocum, director of the non-profit lobbying group Public Citizen’s Energy project.

'Company Doe' shouldn't hold up in court

New York Times: Company anonymously challenges consumer website - On Oct. 17, Company Doe filed a lawsuit against the product safety commission in the Federal District Court for the District of Maryland, according to the nonprofit advocacy group Public Citizen.

Occupy Koch Brothers

Politico: Bring popcorn... and pickets? - “Protesters will enjoy political satire videos highlighting the Kochs’s efforts to preserve tax breaks for Big Oil, eliminate workers’ bargaining rights and more,” the groups wrote in a statement. Among the groups schedules to participate: Campaign for America’s Future, Campaign for Community Change, Common Cause, Health Care for America Now, Oil Change International, The Other 98%, Public Citizen, Rebuild the Dream, Tar Sands Action, True Majority and USAction.

Obama's fundraiser under investigation

Huffington Post: Barack Obama's top wall street fundraiser Corzine under investigation - "Campaign fundraising from the financial sector can cut both ways, but generally it's more favorable for [politicians] to raise funds from the industry," Public Citizen's legislative representative Craig Holman told The Huffington Post. "It isn't often that you hear public demands over a particular egregious case. MF Global would be an appropriately egregious case."

Hours of Service rule almost finished

Land Line Magazine: HOS final rule nearing completion - The groups involved in the lawsuit – Public Citizen, Teamsters, Advocates for Highway Safety and Truck Safety Coalition – and the FMCSA have until Nov. 28 to file motions to govern further proceedings.

FEC is broken

Politico: Agency nullification at the FEC - A broad coalition, including Americans for Campaign Reform, Campaign Legal Center, Common Cause, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, Democracy 21, League of Women Voters, Public Campaign, Public Citizen and U.S. PIRG, has now appealed to congressional oversight committees, requesting that they “investigate and hold hearings on the systemic problems with the Federal Election Commission."

Anthrax vaccine testing on children

FierceVaccines: Massachusetts biologics laboratory lays of 49; Biovest nabs another 7 year exclusivity deal; - After the National Biodefense Science Board OKed the pursuit of pediatric anthrax vaccine testing, the Public Citizen protested the recommendation, calling it fear-mongering.

Controls on commodity speculation

Des Moines Register: Advocates argue against speculation - The public policy advocacy group, Public Citizen, Thursday argued for controls on commodity speculation, arguing that speculators are responsible for wild swings in prices and high costs to consumers.

FEC's secrecy

Politico: FEC can't explain secrecy - Public Citizen’s government affairs lobbyist Craig Homan declared the FEC “broken."

Groups call out FEC

The Boston Globe: Transparency groups lash out at FEC, Obama - The advocates, including nonpartisan watchdogs Democracy 21, Public Citizen and the Campaign Legal Center, said the FEC has repeatedly failed to issue new regulations clarifying aspects of a Supreme Court ruling last year allowing companies and other organizations to spend unlimited amounts on elections.

Campaign finance scandal

Huffington Post: 'Campaign Finance Scandal' at FEC: Reform groups call for Obama to step up - Six organizations that support campaign finance regulation -- Democracy 21, Campaign Legal Center, Public Citizen, Common Cause, League of Women Voters and U.S. PIRG -- held a Capitol Hill press conference to urge the president to appoint new commissioners to fill the seats of five Federal Election Commission members whose terms have expired.

House demands FEC documents

The Hill: Lawmakers demand FEC documents, threaten subpoena - Eight ethics watchdogs, including Democracy 21, Public Citizen and U.S. PIRG, sent Obama a letter Thursday urging the president to nominate new commissioners to the FEC.

Tygacil should carry black box warning

AboutLawsuits.com: Tygacil side effects require black box warnings, petition to claims - The prominent consumer advocacy group Public Citizen is calling for the FDA to require a new black box warning for the antibiotic Tygacil, indicating that the drug carries a higher mortality rate when compared to other antibiotics.

Anthrax vaccine should not best tested on children

eNews Park Forest: Children should not be exposed to anthrax vaccine for research purposes - The National Biodefense Science Board’s advice to the Obama administration and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on Friday to test the anthrax vaccine on children should be rejected because such studies would be unethical and irresponsible, Public Citizen said in a letter sent today to the agencies. Public Citizen strongly opposes the proposed research.

Antibiotic's side effects

ABC 11: Antibiotic may have caused side effects - The consumer advocacy group Public Citizen, petitioned the FDA in 2006 for stronger warnings on LEVAQUIN and other antibiotics in the same category.

Congress takes private trips despite rules

USA Today: Despite ethics rules, Congress' travel junkets creep back up - "These are the travel junkets of yore," said Craig Holman of the watchdog group Public Citizen, which lobbied for the 2007 travel restrictions. "It's a recurring situation. You get some good reforms on the books, and after a few years, people start trying to get around them."

Trans-Pacific Partnerships will deny drugs to millions

Bangkok Post: No to Obama's pharma in Asia - Peter Maybarduk of Public Citizen says the Obama administration is forcing developing countries to trade away their access to medicines.

Testing Anthrax vaccine on children

The Hill: Consumer group slams proposal to test Anthrax vaccine on kids - The consumer group Public Citizen on Tuesday slammed a proposal to test the anthrax vaccine on children, calling the idea unethical and illegal and accusing the pharmaceutical industry of fear-mongering.

Feds put off new trucking rules

Streetsblog Capitol Hill: Feds put off issuing new trucking safety rules - The pending change is the result of a lawsuit brought by Public Citizen, the Teamsters Union, Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, and the Truck Safety Coalition against the FMCSA to tighten the standards.

Bill Moyers speaks at 40th Gala

Neiman Watchdog: 'Our politicians are little more than money launderers in the trafficking of power and policy' - Longtime journalist and commentator Bill Moyers was the keynote speaker on October 20 at the 40th anniversary celebration of Public Citizen, the "countervailing force to corporate power" founded by Ralph Nader in 1971.

Company suing public database kept anonymous

Consumer Affairs: Company sues to block posting of consumer's complaint - Public Citizen, Consumer Federation of America and Consumers Union have asked a federal court to deny a company’s motion to seal all papers filed in its lawsuit against the CPSC.

Occupy the Kochs

Arkansas Times: Occupy the Kochs - SPONSORING ORGANIZATIONS: Campaign for America’s Future, Campaign for Community Change, Common Cause, Health Care for America Now, Oil Change International, The Other 98%, Public Citizen, Rebuild the Dream, Tar Sands Action, True Majority, USAction.

Super Committee holds public hearing

Public News Service: Congressional "Super Committee" holds rare public hearing today -  Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen, predicts that the process will lead to bad agreements because it doesn't invite enough outside input.

Nepotism at William Beaumont Army Medical Center

KVIA El Paso: I-Team: Do cash and paid-time-off awards show nepotism at Beaumont? - "That's unusual for any employee, but eyebrows need to be raised when it's the wife of one of the most important people at the hospital," said Tom Smith, the director of Public Citizen Texas, one of the most active government watchdog groups in the state.

Elections being funded anonymously, thanks to Citizens United loopholes

The Arizona Republic: Throw a light on secret funds - According to the watchdog group Public Citizen, just 32percent of independent expenditure groups are releasing the names of contributors.

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