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HUD Secretary favors political allies in awarding contracts?

By R. Neal
September 21, 2006 - According to Think Progress, HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson "instructed staff to award HUD contracts to President Bush's political allies and withhold them from his political opponents." The revelations came to light as a result of a HUD Inspector General investigation into an allegation that Jackson had "canc

Poverty statistics "critically flawed"

By R. Neal
September 7, 2006 - Several progressive blogs, including Facing South, have noted the Census Bureau's latest report on income and poverty. The latest right-wing talking point is that the statistics are bogus, and you won't believe why:

Florida energy policy

By R. Neal
September 5, 2006 - We got a notice in the mail from the Florida Department of Revenue that there will be a one week sales tax holiday, October 5th through October 11th, on "Energy Star" certified appliances.

Why won't workers join unions?

September 5, 2006 - Here on Labor Day, it's important to consider how labor is faring, especially in the South. The region's reputation as an anti-union stronghold is usually chalked up to a supposed anti-union sentiment on the part of the region's workers.

Light rail for Central Florida?

By R. Neal
August 22, 2006 - Here in East Tennessee, every time there's a new major revitalization plan for Knoxville there is mention of light rail. (Along with a "discovery" center, but I digress.) People nod and say "that's nice" and go look at the maps to see how many of their homes and natural areas will be replaced with condos and office/retail/strip-mall developments.

North Carolina and the give-away game

July 29, 2006 - Until 2004, North Carolina was considered a fairly stingy state when it came to "development subsidies" -- the over $50 billion a year in tax breaks and other give-aways that states and localities pay to attract business.

Another small step for better pay

By R. Neal
July 20, 2006 - At the request of Gov. Kathleen Blanco, the Louisiana Civil Service Commission has raised the minimum wage for all state workers to $6.15 per hour, one dollar more than the federal minimum wage. The new minimum wage will go into effect in August.