Jamie Leigh Jones Law beyond Dispute

Jamie Leigh Jones

Mother Jones reports that Jamie Leigh Jones – the woman who in 2005 made explosive allegations of gang rape and intimidation while employed in Iraq by former Halliburton subsidiary KBR – stands a “good chance” of losing her civil suit against the contractor due to “significant holes and discrepancies in her story.” These revelations, however, should not call into question the meaningful legislation drafted and passed into law in response to her alleged ordeal.

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The Silver Lining in the Tea Party Debt Commission*

They're here to kill teh socialism!

FreedomWorks – the Koch-addicted, Tea Party-associated bastard progeny of conservative wingnut and former House Majority Leader Dick Armey – is cobbling together a budget panel similar to last year's presidential debt commission. Ingeniously, the group has set such ridiculously stringent goals that the policies required to carry them out would have a devastating effect on the economy – wherein lies the comforting prospect of the effort.

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Big Business Still Fighting Like Mad Against Disclosure EO*

Filthy rich businessmen simply do not care for disclosure

On Wednesday, a veritable who's who of business interests wrote to the Senate Armed Services Committee to cheerlead an anticipated amendment from Sens. Susan Collins (R-ME) and Rob Portman (R-OH). Expected during markup of the fiscal year (FY) 2012 Senate defense authorization act, the amendment would prohibit the Department of Defense (DOD) from implementing President Obama's draft executive order (EO) on contractor disclosure, should he sign it.

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WaPo on the Drivers of Debt

They just can't help themselves

Last week, I noted the Washington Post's flawed execution of journalistic "even-handedness" in its editorial on President Obama's draft executive order (EO) on contractor disclosure. It seems the paper is once again leveling partisan disparities with a snazzy new interactive graphic on the drivers of our nation's debt, titled, "Votes that pushed us into the red."

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WaPo and the GOP Take Aim at Disclosure EO

Kaplan Inc. and the Global Oppression Party

In a thoroughly confused editorial published last weekend, the Washington Post told readers it simply does not care for President Obama’s draft executive order (EO) on contractor disclosure, claiming it’s “uneasy” with the “well-intentioned but flawed” proposal. Coming to the Post’s rescue, though, congressional Republicans have introduced stand-alone legislation similar to the recently passed Cole amendment that would prevent federal agencies from requiring contractors to disclose political spending to the public.

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House Stands Up for Big Business, Spurns Transparency*

GOP: How dare average citizens demand that powerful business interests disclose how they’re influencing the political process.

On Wednesday evening, during House debate of the fiscal year (FY) 2012 defense authorization bill, Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) introduced and won agreement to an amendment that would prevent the federal government from requiring potential contractors – which would include many large corporations – to disclose their political contributions to the public.

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GOP Doesn't Care about Deficits ... Especially When It Comes to Defense Spending

No amount of funding for the defense industry could quench the GOP's insatiable thirst for cluster bombing brown people in distant countries ... for freedom.

With release of their cut-to-the-bone 302(b) suballocations last week, the House Appropriations Committee provided yet another display of how Republicans in general - and conservatives in particular – don't care about deficits, as the defense budget received zero scrutiny.

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CBO Monthly Budget Review, May 2011

Congressional Budget Office

Last week, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released their latest Monthly Budget Review (MBR). While not as "salacious" as either the April or the February reports – at least in terms of how Capitol Hill is likely to react toward the release – this month’s review includes several interesting items.

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U.S. Chamber Kicks off Barrage against Disclosure EO*

One corporate hack awarding another.

Signaling the first wave of attacks on President Obama's draft executive order (EO) requiring disclosure of political donations by potential federal contractors, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, utilizing their Astroturf group, Friends of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, sent out an absurdly deceptive email alert last week calling on supporters to resist the White House's latest transparency effort.

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Truthout Publishes OMB Watch Piece on Contracting


Today, Truthout, an independent news and commentary website, published an article written by OMB Watch Executive Director Gary Bass and myself on constructive, manageable ways the Obama administration can reduce influence peddling in government contracting right now.

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