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Very interesting story in National Journal:
John McCain’s presidential campaign has finally paid off its debt to 3eDC, a private Web company linked to campaign manager Rick Davis and his longtime lobbying pal, Paul Manafort. But there’s one big curiosity: Last year, the cash-starved campaign, without explanation, reported to the Federal Election Commission that 3eDC’s bill had been reduced by $107,000. In the end, 3eDC was paid $972,000, not the $1,079,000 originally billed. “It’s always a serious question for the public and auditors when over $100,000 is removed without explanation from a financial disclosure report,” says Kent Cooper, a political money expert and former FEC official. “Indeed, this raises the question of whether actual services were provided and the bill was reduced, making it an illegal corporate contribution.”
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
I recently spent a semester teaching writing at an elite liberal-arts college. At strategic points around the campus, in shades of yellow and green, banners displayed the following pair of texts. The first was attributed to the college’s founder, which dates it to the 1920s. The second was extracted from the latest version of the institution’s mission statement:
The paramount obligation of a college is to develop in its students the ability to think clearly and independently, and the ability to live confidently, courageously, and hopefully.
Let us take a moment to compare these texts. The first thing to observe about the older one is that it is a sentence. It expresses an idea by placing concepts in relation to one another within the kind of structure that we call a syntax. It is, moreover, highly wrought: a parallel structure underscored by repetition, five adverbs balanced two against three.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A naked man believed to be under the influence of LSD rammed his pickup truck into two police cars.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”