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Take Action: Help Elizabeth Warren Change Wall Street and Pass the 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act

Take Action: Help Elizabeth Warren Change Wall Street and Pass the 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Senator Elizabeth Warren has introduced a bill that would make the biggest banks simpler and smaller and once again end the public subsidy to Wall Street speculation.

By requiring banks to focus on lending to the real economy, the 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act would point the way toward a financial system that better serves consumers, small businesses and the nation as a whole.

Petition to Congress

 

We urge you to co-sponsor and work for passage of the 21st-Century Glass Steagall Act. Like its New Deal-era namesake, this bill would erect a wall between traditional banks and the risky world of investment banks and hedge funds.

More than five years after the financial crisis, the biggest banks are bigger than ever, and still engaged in large-scale financial speculation. Not enough has been done to end their "Heads I win, tails the public loses" practices. This legislation would make banks less massive and complex, and curtail their ability to use government guarantees to fuel Wall Street speculation. It would be a big step toward ending the era of banks that are Too Big to Fail – and jail, manage, or regulate.

We ask you to do all you can to get this crucial legislation enacted.

Greg Russak's insight:

I hope that every American will get behind this. 

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A Map of Baseball Nation

A Map of Baseball Nation | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it

"Fans may not list which team they favor on the census, but millions of them do make their preferences public on Facebook. Using aggregated data provided by the company, we were able to create an unprecedented look at the geography of baseball fandom, going down not only to the county level, as Facebook did in a nationwide map it released a few weeks ago, but also to ZIP codes."


Via Seth Dixon
Greg Russak's insight:

Maps and baseball - a good combination!

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Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, April 28, 2014 10:43 AM

unit 1 & 3

Wyatt Wolf's curator insight, October 30, 2014 7:46 PM

My favorite baseball team is the Philadelphia Phillies, here's everyone else's.

Global Speechwriter's comment, November 4, 2014 2:52 AM
Jays? C'mon.
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.@ChangeWalmart's #SummerForRespect

Making Change at Walmart has created a summer program for students to do something about economic injustices, what Robert Reich calls, "the civil rights struggle of our time." Sign up is at  Here's...
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Koch Company and Labor Unions: One Degree of Separation

Koch Company and Labor Unions: One Degree of Separation | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it

Strange brew cooked up on K Street: Charles, David and organized labor.

 

by Russ Choma on April 22, 2014 3:26 PM 


The influence industry sometimes produces strange bedfellows. Case in point, according to recently filed lobbying disclosure reports from 2014's first quarter: The same lobbying firm that represents Koch Companies Public Sector and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in their efforts to keep the IRS from tightening up regs on dark money groups also represents one of the biggest names in organized labor.


Of course, organized labor is not necessarily unfriendly to the idea of outside money groups; unions have made great use of super PACs and have beenlinked to liberal dark money groups likePatriot Majority. But the prevailing narrative of partisan politics puts unions on the opposite side of the battlefield from the billionaire brothers David and Charles Koch (and by extension the conglomerate they own, KCPS).


<and the point not to miss>


The Carpenters union spent $20,000 on lobbying in the first quarter, and spent $320,000 in all of 2013. 

 KCPS, on the other hand, spent $10.4 million last year on lobbying.  Read more athttp://www.opensecrets.org/news/2014/04/koch-company-and-labor-unions-one-degree-of-separation.html ;


Greg Russak's insight:

An interesting and important article that includes this fact:

 

The Carpenters union spent $20,000 on lobbying in the first quarter, and spent $320,000 in all of 2013. 

 KCPS, on the other hand, spent $10.4 million last year on lobbying. 
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Monica S Mcfeeters's curator insight, April 26, 2014 3:11 PM

Here are some numbers that matter. Glancing over this is well worth your time!

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Nine Cities That Love Their Trees

Nine Cities That Love Their Trees | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
More and more American cities are working to preserve their trees. Here’s a look at nine cities working to conserve their tree canopies.

Via Seth Dixon
Greg Russak's insight:

Happy Arbor Day and thanks to all the Pittsburghers who made it possible for our city to make the list!

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Greg Russak's comment, April 29, 2014 8:33 PM
In "hops", you say?!? HA!! We, the progeny of mill-hunks (a term of endearment referring steel workers) accept your challenge to a beer drinking.......oh......wait......did you mean hoops? Well, in that case, good sir, yes, your NBA team should have no trouble rolling all over our non-existent NBA franchise!! Shall we talk football, hockey, or even baseball?!? And, start planting more trees!!! ;-)
Party Recon's comment, April 29, 2014 9:10 PM
Challenged accepted! Our best Micro against IC Light. OK?
Greg Russak's comment, April 29, 2014 9:24 PM
IC Light?!? Bleh! I'll have what you're having!
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Center for a Stateless Society » Charles Koch Clutches Pearls, Dies of Moral Rectitude

Center for a Stateless Society » Charles Koch Clutches Pearls, Dies of Moral Rectitude | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Charles Koch of Koch Industries, wounded to the core of his being by allegations from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and others that his championing of the “free market” conceals lobbying efforts to rig the system in his favor, suffici
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Republicans have a major demographic problem. And it’s only going to get worse.

Republicans have a major demographic problem. And it’s only going to get worse. | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
2016 will be a tough election for the GOP to win. 2024 might be impossible.
Greg Russak's insight:

Writing at Commentary magazine on Monday, former Bush Administration official Pete Wehner concludes:

 

It’s an undeniable empirical truth that the GOP coalition is shrinking, and it’s shrinking in the aftermath of two fairly decisive defeats, with the latter coming against a president whose policies were judged by many Americans to have been failures. Which means the Republican task isn’t simply to nominate a candidate who can fire up the base; it is to find principled conservative leaders who can win over voters who are not now voting for the GOP at the presidential level.

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How Our Laws Are Made [infographic]

How Our Laws Are Made [infographic] | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
As the national debt and budget issues monopolize the airwaves, it strikes me how little I remember from my undergraduate government courses. I can rattle off the names of several key representatives and senators, but the inner workings of their roles conjuring a bill into a law are a bit fuzzy. If you have found yourself in a similar predicament (or you are a political science buff who thrives on clever ways to explain governmental processes) this infographic is for you.
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Elizabeth Warren Book Rips Tea Party 'Magical Thinking'

Elizabeth Warren Book Rips Tea Party 'Magical Thinking' | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
WASHINGTON -- Elizabeth Warren's new book isn't just a memoir -- it's a full-throated endorsement of modern, populist liberalism and a scathing indictment of anti-government "magical thinking" by the tea party.

While the Democratic Massa...
Greg Russak's insight:

Warren writes. "Our problems are getting bigger by the day and we need to develop some hardheaded, realistic responses. Instead of trying to starve the government or drown it in the bathtub, we need to tackle our problems head-on, and that will require better government."


I agree.

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Political Scene: Elizabeth Warren's Influence

Political Scene: Elizabeth Warren's Influence | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Jill Lepore and Evan Osnos discuss how Elizabeth Warren is changing the Senate and the country.
Greg Russak's insight:

But it’s undeniable that Warren is changing the Senate and, by extension, the country. “Left-wing populism is on the rise, and right-wing populism has been losing a fair amount of ground,” Lepore says of recent political trends. Moreover, she continues, “If the momentum is on Warren’s side, then everything shifts left.”

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Party Recon's comment, April 29, 2014 4:31 PM
I love Liz Warren and wish her the best in bringing the Democratic Party back to its roots as the party of the people. I would also love to see her debate Hillary Clinton, especially when it came to Wall Street. Hillary took $400,000 last fall from Goldman Sachs and, in return, delivered the infamous, "Banker Bashing is Bad" speech. Meanwhile, Warren seems to be the only one rallying people to the cause of re-regulating The Street and holding it accountable for the mischief that crashed the economy in '08, much of which continues today.
Greg Russak's comment, April 29, 2014 8:00 PM
I'd like to see that debate, too
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Video | BillMoyers.com

Video | BillMoyers.com | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Greg Russak's insight:
April 11, 2014

If you believe America desperately needs a great surge of democracy in the face of fierce opposition from reactionary and corporate forces, then remembering and reviving the spirit of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who died 69 years ago this week, is in order.

 

In January 1941, FDR’s State of the Union address made it clear that a fight was inevitable, a fight to preserve, protect and defend four essential freedoms: freedom from fear and want and freedom of speech and religion.

 

This week, Bill speaks with historian Harvey J. Kaye, author of the new book, The Fight for the Four Freedoms: What Made FDR and the Greatest Generation Truly Great, about how FDR’s speech was a rallying cry to build the kind of progressive society that Roosevelt hoped for but did not live to see at war’s end.

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Restoring Louisiana’s Coast Will Require Restoring Its Democracy—Governor Jindal Is Trying to Undermine Both

Restoring Louisiana’s Coast Will Require Restoring Its Democracy—Governor Jindal Is Trying to Undermine Both | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Genuflecting to Big Oil's pressure, Governor Bobby Jindal is
Greg Russak's insight:

You can file this one under, "No Surprise!"

 

A Louisiana elected official once said “the flag of Texaco flies over the Louisiana State Capitol.” Right now that flag is flapping in the face of every citizen. Tax-hating governor Jindall now wants to spend tens of millions of dollars of tax payer money to plug oil canals which companies are required by law to plug themselves. That money pales beside to the $50 billion cost of the state’s master plan to protect the coast. Jindal’s funding proposal caper will protect his oil industry patrons and stick the public with the bill: taxpayers will cover the costs of damage caused by oil companies.

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Monica S Mcfeeters's curator insight, April 18, 2014 11:53 AM

I think politics should stay out of nature.

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Young Conservatives Group Pressures GOP on Gay Marriage - Washington Wire - WSJ

Young Conservatives Group Pressures GOP on Gay Marriage - Washington Wire - WSJ | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
A new effort is being launched to try to persuade the Republican Party to drop its opposition to same-sex marriage from the party’s platform, a steep climb that would require overcoming social conservatives who have dominated the GOP’s position on the issue.
Greg Russak's insight:

Signs of hope that the GOP may yet avoid political oblivion. There is, after all, no future in appealing only to old, white, straight men. We'll be a minority in America before long.....thankfully.

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Wall Street Republicans' dark secret: Hillary Clinton 2016

Wall Street Republicans' dark secret: Hillary Clinton 2016 | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
NEW YORK — The biggest parlor game on Wall Street and in corporate boardrooms these days is guessing whether former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush will run for president and save the GOP’s old establishment base from its rising populist wing. The second most popular game is guessing what happens if Jeb says no. Two dozen interviews about the 2016...
Greg Russak's insight:

We have to get through 2014 first, but I can see this.....

 

“If it turns out to be Jeb versus Hillary we would love that and either outcome would be fine,” one top Republican-leaning Wall Street lawyer said over lunch in midtown Manhattan last week. “We could live with either one. Jeb versus Joe Biden would also be fine. It’s Rand Paul or Ted Cruz versus someone like Elizabeth Warren that would be everybody’s worst nightmare.”

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/04/wall-street-republicans-hillary-clinton-2016-106070.html#ixzz30KWHgiEt

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TPP Unraveling?

TPP Unraveling? | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
President Obama returns from East Asia empty-handed after Japan rejects bilateral agreement - but if the TPP moves forward, will it be in the interest of most Americans?
Greg Russak's insight:

In addition to the linked video news report and ICYMI from earlier today, here's a chance add your voice...

 

http://didyoucheckfirst.wordpress.com/2014/04/28/write-your-senator-to-challenge-ustr-froman/

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Thomas Piketty Undermines the Hallowed Tenets of the Capitalist Catechism

Thomas Piketty Undermines the Hallowed Tenets of the Capitalist Catechism | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Greg Russak's insight:

I'm not an economist, and I'm not an expert, but even as a casual observer and part-time student of economics, business, politics, and society, none of this comes as shocking or a complete surprise.

 

The excerpt below is telling, but the entire article is very much worth reading.

 

Then come back and invest the 16:35 in this video: 

Paul Piff: Does money make you mean?

http://www.ted.com/talks/paul_piff_does_money_make_you_mean

 

 

---

 

Piketty is certainly not the first economist to criticize inherited wealth. And the idea that capitalism is unfair will not shock most people who work for a living. But Piketty’s credentials and exhaustive attention to statistical detail make him harder for the pundits and policy elites that protect the plutocracy to dismiss.

 

In addition to exposing the weakness in a core principle of the economist canon, Piketty’s data-driven methodology skewers the class bias masquerading as science that pervades the study of economics and the formulation of economic policy.

 

Economics claims superiority over other social sciences on the basis of its greater capacity to quantify reality, i.e., crunch numbers. Yet for decades now the numbers have been in conflict with hallowed tenets of the capitalist catechism. For example, the forty-year gap between wages and productivity refutes the theory that workers get paid according to their efficiency. Twenty-five years of relentless job losses and wage decline because of globalization mocks the rigid faith in free trade. We haven’t had a peacetime price spiral driven by US government deficits in modern times, yet the conventional wisdom has us cutting food stamps to placate inflation paranoia.

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Who Are the Koch Brothers and What Do They Want? - YouTube

Sen. Sanders talks with Joy Ann Reid on MSNBC about his Huffington Post column on the Koch brothers. Read the article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rep...
Greg Russak's insight:

The more dangerous and extreme Libertarian ideals of the 1980 campaign - when Charles Koch as veep candidate and Reagan was too liberal for him - have become mainstream GOP ideals. Think about that. 

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Oregon May Close State Exchange And Join Feds’ Site

Oregon s health insurance exchange, plagued by computer flaws after federal taxpayers spent $303 million to build it, may be closed and the state's customers shifted to the U.S. Obamacare marketplace.

Greg Russak's insight:

Here's the first question I would like to ask. Since it seems that Oracle failed to deliver a functioning site, when will they be refunding the payments they received back to Oregon?

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WATCH: Rand Paul Says Jimmy Carter Was Better For Economy Than Ronald Reagan - The National Memo

WATCH: Rand Paul Says Jimmy Carter Was Better For Economy Than Ronald Reagan - The National Memo | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Senator Rand Paul (R-KY), a likely 2016 presidential candidate, has some explaining — and penance — to do. On Wednesday, Mother Jones dug up some old videos of the self-proclaimed libertarian slamming Republican hero Ronald Reagan’s economic policies for increasing government spending and debt. In 2007, while stumping on behalf of his father’s presidential campaign, …
Greg Russak's insight:

It seems to me that the closer one examines this guy, the worse he has to look to just about everyone, doesn't he?

 

See also this....

http://www.scoop.it/t/coffeeparty/p/4019559850/2014/04/13/how-racial-resentment-fuels-libertarianism

 

this....

http://www.alternet.org/visions/true-history-libertarianism-america-phony-ideology-promote-corporate-agenda

 

and this

http://didyoucheckfirst.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/young-and-old-people-do-not-be-fooled-by-rand-paul/

 

 

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You won’t believe how many people are upset about this secretive agreement

You won’t believe how many people are upset about this secretive agreement | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Right now, Obama and other leaders are in closed-door meetings to fast track and finalize the Trans Pacific Partnership. And what they’re talking about will shock you.
Greg Russak's insight:

The TPP threatens to censor your Internet1, kill jobs, undermine environmental safeguards, and remove your democratic rights2.

We're going to get the attention of decision-makers and the media by projecting a Stop The Secrecy message on key buildings in Washington D.C. - but we need you to add your voice now.


The TPP is huge: It covers 40% of the global economy and will overwrite national laws affecting people around the world.3 

 

The worst of the TPP threatens everything we care about: democracy, jobs, health, the environment, and the Internet.  That's why decision-makers are meeting in Asia under extreme secrecy and pushing 'Fast Track' laws to cement the plan into place. 

This is no way to make decisions in the 21st century. We need to raise a loud global call to expose this dangerous secrecy now. 

With every voice that is added to our call, a donor will contribute to make the Stop The Secrecy projection on buidlings in Washington D.C. bigger and brighter. We need to make this as big as possible when Obama returns to Washington on April 30th. 

Please add your voice to help us build one of the largest online campaigns the world has ever seen.



Footnotes:
*According to several reports "An early signing of the TPP is expected to be a key topic in a planned full meeting between Abe and Obama when the U.S. president visits Japan." The meetings are taking place right now. 

[1] TPP Creates Legal Incentives For ISPs To Police The Internet. What Is At Risk? Your Rights. Source: Electronic Frontier Foundation.

[2] Leaked drafts of the Secret Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, Source: Wikileaks. Background on several issues pertaining to the TPP can be found on the Expose The TPP website and in our resources page.

[3] U.S. “Bullying” TPP Negotiators Amid Failure to Agree. Source: Inter Press Service News Agency. *Note: The U.S. and the E.U. are already discussing a similar secretive agreement called "Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)". Once the TPP is finalized there will be pressure to harmonize and extend its provisions to TTIP -- meaning the E.U. There are also reports of many others countries being added to the TPP once it is finalized.



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FOCUS | Cliven Bundy and Homeland Security

FOCUS | Cliven Bundy and Homeland Security | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
'It's a stark image: A supporter of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy lies prone behind a concrete retaining wall on a freeway overpass, training a rifle on federal agents. He walked away a free man. When does that happen?' Marc Ash, RSN
Greg Russak's insight:

As far as I can tell and from what I have read, Bundy is a criminal, and there is nothing admirable or patriotic about him and the people supporting him.

 

Here's the litmus test: Imagine he was a Muslim, or a man of color.

 

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Lap Dancers, the CIA, Payoffs and BP’s Deepwater Horizon: Greg Palast

Lap Dancers, the CIA, Payoffs and BP’s Deepwater Horizon: Greg Palast | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Four years ago this Sunday, the Deepwater Horizon blowout incinerated 11 men and poisoned 600 miles of Gulf coastline. What political fairy dust allows BP to remain virtually immune from the consequences?
- 2014/04/18
Greg Russak's insight:

Palast connects the dots from the fall of the Soviet Union to a corporate-funded government overthrow in Azerbaijan, and from cost-cutting quick-dry cement that failed in the Caspian Sea the same way it would again at Deepwater Horizon to how it's possible that BP is allowed to drill again in the Gulf while no one is held accountable for the deaths of their workers and an ecological disaster.

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MoneyBomb | Take Back Tour

Greg Russak's insight:
The National Defense Authorization Act, aka the NDAA, is legislation every American ought to be aware of and ought to add it to the list of things that need to be changed in DC. A good place to start would be paying attention to PANDA, People Against the NDAA, and by supporting them and their Take Back Tour by donating and attending an event near you.
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Who Are the Koch Brothers and What Do They Want?

Who Are the Koch Brothers and What Do They Want? | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
The truth is that the agenda of the Koch brothers is to move this country from a democratic society with a strong middle class to an oligarchic form of society in which the economic and political life of the nation are controlled by a handful of bill...
Greg Russak's insight:

Bernie's right.

 

The Kochs are Libertarians in the most vile and despicable ideological sense of the word, and Libertarianism IS, in point of fact from it's earliest days until now, the epitome of crony capitalism at its worst.

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Another Orwellian Op-Ed From Charles Koch

Another Orwellian Op-Ed From Charles Koch | DidYouCheckFirst | Scoop.it
Charles Koch, the misunderstood billionaire pollutocrat, explains his warmhearted benevolence in a Wall Street Journal op-ed. We beg to differ.
Greg Russak's insight:

....to which I respectfully add the following about libertarians and crony capitalism from my own research....

 

After all, not all libertarian ideas are bad ideas, just like not all Green, Republican, Democratic, or any other political party’s ideas are all bad.

 

While we might all find some amount of common ground everywhere, we should not mistake that for support.  Yes, I share some ideas with libertarians, but make no mistake about it. I consider hardcore libertarianism as not only bad for America, it’s bad for humanity and for civil society.

 

In fact, the only ones who actually benefit from libertarianism are the wealthy corporatists.

 

Milton Friedman would either have to agree or lie to our faces about that fact.

 

Why do I say that? Well, I wonder how many self-proclaimed libertarians and so-called “libertarian populists” actually know about their movement’s history?

 

Let me share some here.


“Libertarianism” was a project of the corporate lobby world, launched as a big business “ideology” in 1946 by The US Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers. The FEE’s board included the future founder of the John Birch Society, Robert Welch; the most powerful figure in the Mormon church at that time, J Reuben Clark, a frothing racist and anti-Semite after whom BYU named its law school; and United Fruit president Herb Cornuelle.


The purpose of the FEE — and libertarianism, as it was originally created — was to supplement big business lobbying with a pseudo-intellectual, pseudo-economics rationale to back up its policy and legislative attacks on labor and government regulations.


This background is important in the Milton Friedman story because Friedman is a founding father of libertarianism, and because the corrupt lobbying deal he was busted playing a part in was arranged through the Foundation for Economic Education.

- The True History of Libertarianism in America: A Phony Ideology to Promote a Corporate Agenda, Sept. 6, 2013, Mark Ames

 

Seems that lobbying and corrupt lobbyists aren’t new ideas, and that even movements who profess to want smaller government aren’t above lobbying that very same government under the table.

 

----

 

(Excerpt from " Young (and Old) People: Do Not Be Fooled by Rand Paul",  http://didyoucheckfirst.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/young-and-old-people-do-not-be-fooled-by-rand-paul/)

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