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Tuesday, Sep 19th

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Michael Moore: America Is Not Broke

Michael MooreAmerica is not broke. Contrary to what those in power would like you to believe so that you'll give up your pension, cut your wages, and settle for the life your great-grandparents had, America is not broke. Not by a long shot. The country is awash in wealth and cash.

It's just that it's not in your hands. It has been transferred, in the greatest heist in history, from the workers and consumers to the banks and the portfolios of the uber-rich. Today just 400 Americans have the same wealth as half of all Americans combined.

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Why employee pensions aren't bankrupting states

Protesters in WisconsinFrom state legislatures to Congress to tea party rallies, a vocal backlash is rising against what are perceived as too-generous retirement benefits for state and local government workers. However, that widespread perception doesn't match reality.

A close look at state and local pension plans across the nation, and a comparison of them to those in the private sector, reveals a more complicated story. However, the short answer is that there's simply no evidence that state pensions are the current burden to public finances that their critics claim.

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Hacked corporate e-mails show Web is an increasingly useful tool in dirty-tricks campaigns

K StreetAlthough much of K Street spends its time plying the halls of Congress on behalf of well-heeled clients, there is a growing dark side to Washington's lobbying and public-relations industry: figuring out new ways to undermine and sabotage opponents.

This little-discussed aspect of the influence business came into view in recent weeks with the release of thousands of hacked corporate e-mails, which detail a pair of high-tech dirty-tricks campaigns aimed at supporters of WikiLeaks and foes of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

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Ohio Senate approves bill that weakens public employee union negotiating rights

Pro union protesters in OhioThe Ohio Senate approved a bill on Wednesday that would weaken the powers of public workers unions to negotiate their contracts. The vote came as union supporters protested the measure for a second day on the grounds of the state capitol in Columbus.

The GOP-sponsored bill passed the Senate by a vote of just 17-16, with six Republicans voting against it. As the roll call finished, dozens of union supporters in the Senate gallery chanted "Shame! Shame! Shame!" Screeches and shouts echoed down the corridors of the Statehouse, where hundreds of opponents of the bill had gathered for the day's events.

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9/11 and the Conquest of Iraq

It was a conspiracy – 9/11. That is indisputable. There is no “lone gunman” to confuse matters. To say anything meaningful about 9/11, you have to be a conspiracy theorist. It is only a question of whose theory of the conspiracy you are prepared to believe. It is incredible that anyone still believes anything the Bush administration said about that tragic day.

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Woodward calls Rumsfeld's memoir "a travesty

Bob WoodwardBob Woodward is “flat-out disgusted” with Donald Rumsfeld’s memoir.

“Rumsfeld's memoir is one big clean-up job, a brazen effort to shift blame to others -- including President Bush -- distort history, ignore the record or simply avoid discussing matters that cannot be airbrushed away,” Woodward writes on Tom Ricks’s Best Defense blog. “It is a travesty, and I think the rewrite job won't wash.”

The Washington Post reporter outlines contradictions in Rumsfeld’s version of events, including when the administration began focusing on Iraq, when the decision to go to war with the country was made, and on whom the responsibility of post-war planning ultimately fell.

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GOP spending plan would cost 700,000 jobs, new report says

Mark ZandiA Republican plan to sharply cut federal spending this year would destroy 700,000 jobs through 2012, according to an independent economic analysis set for release Monday.

The report, by Moody's Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi, offers fresh ammunition to Democrats seeking block the Republican plan, which would terminate dozens of programs and slash federal appropriations by $61 billion over the next seven months.

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