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News Blog

Alternate Realities Roundup 2/18

by Eric S. Peterson
- Posted // 2014-02-18 -

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange talks about the U.S. Government pursuit of him and his follower, including placing him on a “manhunting” list.

Top of the Alty World

“Julian Assange on Being Placed on NSA "Manhunting" List & Secret Targeting of WikiLeaks Supporters”--Democracy Now!

ProPublica profiles the former congressional aide tasked with running the “Kochtopus”--the web of dark money nonprofits that used Koch brothers millions to finance and influence elections in 2010 and 2012.--ProPublica

A look at the drivers behind Hillary Clinton's presidential Super PACs.--Mother Jones

A columnist crashes a Wall Street fraternity party to witness “plutocrats in drag.”--New York Magazine

Top of Alty Utah

A lawmaker is proposing a bill to allow law enforcement to collect DNA samples when booking suspects on felony cases.--Utah Political Capitol

A proposed bill would move Utah to the head of the line for the 2016 presidential primaries.--Utah Policy

A lawmaker wants to allows the state to keep national parks open during government shutdowns or other fiscal emergencies.--Utah Political Capitol

A committee defeated a bill to keep medical incinerators away from residential homes.--KUER

Rantosphere

The Provo Buzz looks at the “ducks” that are lining up for development to begin on the west-side of Utah lake now that a pipeline could bring water enough for developing a community there.

“No matter how fast the ducks line up, there is only one reason some people want to get those little quackers into a nice orderly row — money. No doubt, there are elected officials who genuinely want to prepare the community for future growth. But there are also speculators, who want to make a buck off the decisions our elected officials make. We all need to pay attention, because knowledgeable and powerful men are moving, behind the scenes, and the ducks are being herded, with or without our knowledge. Somebody needs to investigate — Who is buying up property on the west side of Provo? Who is anticipating increased development brought by a causeway? Who is having discussions with, and influence upon, the decision-makers?”--Provo Buzz

The Long View

An eight-month investigation into air quality and regulation of the Eagle Ford Shale Play in Texas, has found inadequate pollution monitors and a glaring lack of oversight. Numerous oil and gas facilities operated without the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality even knowing they existed.

“Texas officials tasked with overseeing the industry are often its strongest defenders, leaving  the Buehrings and other families interviewed for this story to mostly fend for themselves. Oil money is so thoroughly ingrained in the Texas culture and economy that there is little interest in or sympathy for those who have become collateral damage in the drive for riches. The TCEQ is led by three commissioners appointed by Gov. Rick Perry, a Republican who favors dismantling the EPA and voices doubt about climate change. TCEQ officials often go on to jobs as lobbyists for the energy industry they once regulated.”--The Weather Channel

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