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From the Center for Public Integrity:
Another video segment from 2001 shows Norm Lezy, a retired Air Force lieutenant general who’d opened Wal-Mart’s first Washington office in 1999, making the case for the company’s PAC and explaining what it gets for its money. “Let’s be frank,” Lezy begins. “In this day and age, if you don’t have a good political action committee operation to support candidates, you really can’t do much in Washington.” Lezy proceeds to tell his audience the story of a breakfast meeting that he and another Wal-Mart lobbyist hosted for an unnamed U.S. senator. “For a PAC contribution, we sat and had an audience with this senator — eight of us, for an hour and a half,” he says. “We covered every issue that’s important to us and important to you, and let me tell you, you just get that quality time, and that’s the way it works.”
More from Ken Silverstein:
Perspective — October 23, 2013, 8:00 am
How pro-oil Louisiana politicians have shaped American environmental policy
Postcard — October 16, 2013, 8:00 am
A trip to one of the properties at issue in Louisiana’s oil-pollution lawsuits
Number of free condoms handed out by the Brazilian government in advance of Carnival this year:
The best way to measure happiness is simply to ask people how happy they are.
Following three weeks of clashes between protesters and government forces that killed at least 17 people, Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro announced a two-day extension of Carnival. “Happiness will conquer the embittered,” he said during an appearance at a recreation center.
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“American politics has often been an arena for angry minds.”