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From Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, on the country’s worst governors:
Number of miles Gov. Perdue flew in a private jet provided by a lobbyist to attend to a NASCAR race: 30
Cost of the plane ride: $2,400
Maximum acceptable value of a lobbyist gift to state officials in Georgia according to Gov. Perdue’s own
executive order: $25
Cost of one custom-stitched antique rug for Gov. Paterson’s official residence: $21,000
New York State’s projected budget deficit at the time of the rug’s purchase: $15 billion
Pay raise Gov. Paterson requested state employees forgo that same year: 3%
Minimum number of campaign contributors Gov. Jindal appointed to state positions: 200
Number of members on the Louisiana Board of Ethics: 11
Number who resigned after a special legislative session passed Gov. Jindal-backed legislation reforming
Louisiana’s ethics code: 10
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
Percentage of British elementary-school students who think Isaac Newton discovered fire:
The earth once had three moons; the two lost moons may have crashed into the surviving moon, or been sucked into the sun, or flung out of the solar system to drift through deep space.
In Florida, an 87-year-old World War II veteran flying touch-and-go drills in a Cessna collided with an airborne skydiver. “There was a ‘woof’ sound,” said a witness, “like falling on your face into your pillow.”
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“American politics has often been an arena for angry minds.”