This Town grows: The unique and all too usual story of Kurt Bardella

Monday New York Times journalist and This Town author Mark Leibovich tweeted: #ThisTown writes itself / “@politico: Kurt Bardella’s firm hires 2 Trey Radel staffers following leave from Congress: http://t.co/gK4sE5IVCc — Mark Leibovich (@MarkLeibovich) November 25, 2013 For those who have been spared the tawdry details of This Town, Kurt Bardella was California Rep Darrell …

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A small watchdog research team committed itself to regular blog posts on the powers that be. You will not believe what happened next.

Since our last Eyes on the Ties roundup we’ve continued to cover a wide spectrum of news and events with original research using the LittleSis database. Topping this roundup once again is J.P. Morgan, which sealed it’s $13 billion dollar bargain settlement deal with the Department of Justice. You may recall Kevin’s post on the …

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LittleSis pro-tip: Make a list, check it twice

From the 10 most important mustaches of Tumblr to 23 lies you tell yourself to feel like a grown up (guilty), listicles and ranked groupings are increasingly escaping the confines of teen magazines and buzzfeed and entering the news arena. After reading Bloomberg’s recently released “Bloomberg’s Best (and worst): Highest-Paid at Companies that Lost Money in …

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Paul Tudor Jones and American public education

Forbes’s December “special philanthropy issue” features Paul Tudor Jones, among others, and his efforts fighting poverty in NYC. The glowing article about Jones poses a question with its title–“Can hedge fund billionaire Paul Tudor Jones save America’s public education system?”–that the magazine’s cover had already answered: ”Entrepreneurs Can Save the World.” I found the article …

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Tax breaks sweeten JPMorgan’s record-setting settlement with DOJ

In a recent post, Kevin examined the revolving door between JPMorgan and the Department of Justice team charged with negotiating its record-breaking settlement. He concluded that the DOJ attorneys would likely be rewarded in the private sector for their roles in the JPMorgan deal, leaving democracy to foot the bill for their soft negotiations. That same …

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DOJ-JPMorgan settlement was negotiated by former WaMu attorney

The final terms of JPMorgan’s mortgage fraud settlement with the Department of Justice was announced yesterday. It is not all that it is cracked up to be, but that has not stopped reporters from touting the deal as a record settlement and the result of a tough negotiation. One particularly extreme example is the front …

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SUNY kickback controversy prompts changes in presidential pay scheme

Last week, the Albany Times-Union reported that the board of trustees of the State University of New York (SUNY) system unanimously approved a proposal to reform the current compensation structure for the Chancellor, campus presidents, and senior SUNY officials. The reforms, proposed by Chancellor Nancy Zimpher, were presumably prompted by a recent scandal at SUNY …

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Who’s who at Cuomo’s Buffalo fundraiser

Andrew Cuomo is in Buffalo today for a $1000-per-head fundraiser that is expected to raise $500,000 for the governor’s war chest, which at $28 million is much, much larger than that of any other gubernatorial candidate in the country. Cuomo will be met by an anti-fracking protest. …

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Geithner does the Rubin Shuffle

The cooling-off period is over for former Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, who is joining the private equity firm Warburg Pincus as president and managing director. Geithner had initially joined the Council on Foreign Relations as a senior fellow after leaving the Treasury Department early this year. He had taken several plum speaking engagements at Wall …

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Stink Tanks Exposed

This week the Center for Media and Democracy released a new report exposing the corporate backing and extreme right wing agenda of the State Policy Network, a coalition of state policy think tanks. The inspiration for the organization came from Ronald Reagan, who suggested to South Carolina businessman Thomas Roe that there should be organizations …

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