The Star-Spangled Banner is a Song Full of Questions

Early on the morning of Sept. 14, I joined several hundred fellow citizens, along with guests from Canada and the United Kingdom, inside Fort McHenry in Baltimore. We huddled in the chilly morning air in the dawn’s early light to remember the moment 200 years earlier when Francis Scott Key penned the first words of the poem that was to become our national anthem.

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Support Those Who Support Us: Let Your Dollar Be Your Vote for Responsible Corporate Taxpayers

Over the last month, American consumers have sent a strong message to companies thinking about abandoning the U.S. and moving offshore: if you stop supporting the U.S. by avoiding taxes, we’ll stop supporting you and shop elsewhere.

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Cooking the Books on the Costs of Rules

As part of the ongoing national effort by some in the business community and their allies in Congress to attack standards and safeguards, a report released today by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) provides a wildly exaggerated and unreliable estimate for the cost of federal rules in 2012. The report, prepared by economists W. Mark Crain and Nicole V.

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Tracking Toxic Trains in California and Boosting Federal Safeguards

The oil boom in North Dakota's Bakken region has led to more crude oil being transported by train throughout the country and, consequently, a rise in oil train accidents. On Aug. 29, California passed new legislation that would help emergency response officials prepare for potential disasters. The legislation would require rail companies to submit emergency response plans and inform officials about the movement of crude oil and other hazardous materials through the state. The bill dovetails with related federal efforts to boost rail safety.

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32 Firms That Renounced America Paid CEOs $439 Million Last Year

A trickle has turned into a torrent. Burger King’s announcement last week that it would buy Canadian donut darling, Tim Horton’s, and then move the merged corporation to Canada represents the 13th such deal announced this year. Most companies pursuing these “corporate inversions” have abandoned America for the express purpose of lowering their U.S. tax bills.

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Counting the Costs of Carbon: White House Approach Bolstered by Investigative Report

Each ton of carbon pollution from cars, planes, and power plants comes with costs. It harms our environment and threatens our health, it drives climate change, and it negatively impacts our economy. The White House has attempted to develop a standard estimate of these costs, called the “social cost of carbon,” for agencies to use in analyzing the benefits of rules designed to reduce carbon emissions. In an Aug. 25 report, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) validated that effort.

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A Taxing Double Standard: Americans with Troubled Mortgages Penalized While Scofflaw Banks Enjoy Tax Breaks

In early August, Bank of America agreed to a $16.65 billion settlement, which includes funds for “consumer relief.” However, after tax write-offs and deductions, Bank of America's net penalty could be less than $15 billion.

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World Health Organization: Public Health Rules Needed to Curb E-Cigarette Risks

Contrary to industry advertising, a new report by the World Health Organization (WHO) finds that electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) and other electronic nicotine delivery systems pose significant public health hazards because of toxins emitted from the devices. The agency recommends that countries adopt e-cigarette rules to prevent misleading marketing of the products and to educate the public about the potential health risks involved.

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Drinking Diesel? Fracking Companies Use Toxic Substance without Permits

When it comes to protecting drinking water, fracking companies have just one federal rule to follow – get a permit if they are using diesel. But a new report by the Environmental Integrity Project (EIP) indicates that many drillers can’t even abide by this simple requirement.

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Election Transparency Threatened by Lack of Resources for Key Agency

Impeded by a lack of resources, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) has been slow to publicly release recent campaign finance disclosures. The FEC is the independent agency charged with enforcing federal election laws and making campaign finance information available to the American people. This information is vital, particularly in the wake of recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions that gutted our campaign finance laws, and significant delays in releasing such data are of serious concern to the health of our democracy.

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