Preventive Reporting

Reading Time: 1 minute Because I spend most of my waking hours reporting and writing about wrongful convictions across the United States, I am acutely aware when another one becomes public knowledge. Almost every day, I learn about yet another instance of an individual convicted of a crime he or she did not commit, and an eventual exoneration. Frequently, Read More

A News Drought

Reading Time: 1 minute USA Today reports that The first two months of 2009 are the driest start of any year since the USA began keeping records over a century ago, leading to severe drought in Texas, dipping reservoir levels in Florida and a surge in wildfires across the nation. With the risk to human survival that climate change Read More

Autocritique?

Reading Time: 1 minute I was reading a profile in the New York Times arts pages, about the novelist Zoe Heller: The idea for the novel came from a news article about scientists who thought they had found a gene that might be responsible for people’s beliefs, Ms. Heller explained. Regardless of whether it exists, she saw “the belief Read More

Smartphone, Dumb Us

Reading Time: 2 minutes Anyone who owns a Smartphone might wonder just who is being outsmarted. As the New York Times notes: The millions of people who use their cellphones daily to play games, download applications and browse the Web may not realize that they have an unseen companion: advertisers that can track their interests, their habits and even Read More

Where Did the Money Go?

Reading Time: 2 minutes Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke has resisted calls from Congress that he release the names of the banks that were recipients of the bailout money the Fed gave to AIG to prevent it from collapsing. AIG insured its counterparties against losses from mortgage backed derivatives. The Fed poured $85 billion into AIG, which paid out $37.3 Read More

Windows on Morality

Reading Time: 1 minute What makes good people do bad things? That is the topic of a New York Times article about trials of former officials of the savage Cambodian regime, the Khmer Rouge. “We were victims, too,” said Him Huy, the head of the guard detail at the Tuol Sleng torture house, who took part in the executions Read More

Eyewitness News

Reading Time: 1 minute An article in the New York Times about unrest in Tibet and a Chinese crackdown, features an atypical self-reference by a journalist: This reporter got a rare look at the clampdown because he was recently driven through the Tibetan areas of arid Gansu Province while being detained by the police for 20 hours. I was Read More

End Times?

Reading Time: 1 minute NYT to launch two citizen journalism websites The sites will focus on three New Jersey communities and two Brooklyn neighborhoods, with most contributions coming from local residents. A Times staffer will oversee each site; they debut Monday. “It is a grassroots effort, to see if there is a new kind of journalism we can be Read More

Citizen Journalism

Reading Time: 1 minute Chinese citizens seem to be way ahead of Americans when it comes to investigating their government’s shenanigans. A New York Times article published February 25 lays out the story: A man died in police custody. Chinese authorities claimed it was an accident. Thousands of Chinese Internet users speculated that the man had died from a Read More

Secrets?

Reading Time: 1 minute The prosecution of two former pro-Israeli lobbyists on espionage charges points to an urgent need to address the whole business of what constitutes a secret in this country—and what should. Two former lobbyists for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee were found to have shared information they learned from Bush administration officials with journalists, fellow Read More

Hillary's Bush Connection

Reading Time: 12 minutes Research support for this story was provided by the Investigative Fund of The Nation Institute. Published in conjunction with The Nation. IN THE CLINTONS’ PURSUIT OF POWER, there is no such thing as a strange bedfellow. One recently exposed inamorato was Norman Hsu, the mysterious businessman from Hong Kong who brought in $850,000 to Hillary Read More

CIA Helped Bush Senior In Oil Venture

Reading Time: 5 minutes Bush has long denied allegations that he had connections to the intelligence community prior to 1976, when he became Central Intelligence Agency director under President Gerald Ford. At the time, he described his appointment as a ‘real shocker.’ But the freshly uncovered memos contend that Bush maintained a close personal and business relationship for decades Read More

25 Democratic Consultants

Reading Time: 26 minutes Jack Quinn served as Vice President Gore’s Chief of Staff, and later as Counsel to President Clinton. Now he is a partner in a political consulting and lobbying firm with a close friend of Tom DeLay, and together, they have represented clients who want to drill in fragile areas of Alaska, put the screws to Read More

Unholy Trinity: Katrina, Allbaugh and Brown

Reading Time: 32 minutes Days after Louisiana’s governor declared a state of emergency and the National Hurricane Center warned the White House that Hurricane Katrina could top the New Orleans levee system, the only FEMA official actually in New Orleans itself–Marty J. Bahamonde–was not even supposed to be there. He had been sent in advance of the storm and Read More