NC Govt. Prevented Cleanup of Coal Ash Site

Remember that coal ash retention pond owned by Duke Energy that leaked nearly 30 million gallons of toxic slurry into a river in North Carolina? Well the government agency that was supposed to regulate that company's facility was instead helping protect it. And the governor worked for Duke Energy for 28 years. I'm sure that's just a coincidence. … [Read more...]

The Selling of Rich Delusions

In the wake of billionaire venture capitalist Tom Perkins saying that he thinks the richest Americans are on the verge of being rounded up into Nazi-style concentration camps, Josh Marshall tries to understand the psychology and sociology of that utterly deluded belief. … [Read more...]

D’Souza Indicted for Campaign Finance Fraud

Is it possible to overdose on schadenfreude? If so, this might do it. The DOJ and the FBI indicted Dinesh D'Souza on multiple counts of campaign finance fraud for allegedly having other people donate money to a political candidate he favored, then reimbursing them to get around contribution limits. … [Read more...]

What Citizens United Hath Wrought

Chris Cillizza looks at the effect that the Citizens United ruling has had on outside spending -- money spent by third-party political organizations rather than by the parties or the candidates -- during the last three election cycles. It's pretty staggering. This chart speaks volumes: … [Read more...]

Rand Paul Tells Lies in Detroit

Jeff Wattrick, one of Michigan's best muckraking journalists, went to hear Rand Paul's speech to the Detroit Economic Club last week and asked him a simple question: Why did you vote to continue subsidizing crop insurance for tobacco farmers? His response was a rather blatant lie. … [Read more...]

Tancredo: New IRS Regs an ‘Assault’ on Free Speech

Tom Tancredo, former congressman turned wingnut columnist and professional anti-immigration agitator, responds to new propose IRS guidelines on what can and can't be done by 501(c)(4) groups with all the nuance and intellectual integrity one would expect. Which is to say he screams "OMG, Obama is destroying freedom of speech" at the top of his lungs while hyperventilating. … [Read more...]

IRS Proposes New Guidelines for Political Non-Profits

Throughout the mostly fake IRS "scandal" the right pretended that it was all about Obama persecuting conservative groups, but the real problem was that the rules governing political non-profits are far too vague and provide little guidance. Now the IRS is proposing new rules to fix that. … [Read more...]

Clinton vs Warren in 2016?

There has been a lot of speculation recently about a possible Elizabeth Warren candidacy for the Democratic nomination for president in 2016, challenging Hillary Clinton, who has been the presumptive nominee for many years now. I don't think that's likely to happen, but it does bring up some interesting issues. Like this: … [Read more...]

Report: Judicial Elections Undermine Justice

The Center for American Progress has a new report on the unprecedented amount of money being spent in state judicial elections, especially by third party corporate groups. The unsurprising conclusion is that the influence of that money undermines justice for criminal defendants and civil plaintiffs. … [Read more...]

Newt's Useless PAC

Mother Jones reports on the American Legacy Political Action Committee, set up by Newt and Callista Gingrich, which is now trying to fundraise based on opposition to Obama's Syria policy. The problem is that the PAC is taking in large amounts of money and distributing almost none of it. … [Read more...]

Private Prison Contracts Include Quotas

One of the great dangers of privatizing jails and prisons is that you give a huge profit motive to keep those facilities filled to the brim with inmates. A new report from In the Public Interest finds that many of the contracts between private corrections firms require that the government either keep them full or pay for the empty beds. … [Read more...]

Wingnuts: No Science Laureate for You!

If the anti-science agenda of America's right wing wasn't crystal clear by now, this should put the nail in the coffin. A bill to create up to three U.S. Science Laureates that was considered so non-controversial that it never even got a committee hearing was squashed when the wingnuts threw a fit about it last week. … [Read more...]