Saturday, August 23, 2014. Last Update: Fri 2:50 PM EST

Politics & Policy

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Hogs, guns, and money

We heard about a Senate candidate’s “Make ‘em squeal” ad. The outside spending that supported her? Not so much

PRAIRIE VILLAGE, KS — Who is Joni Ernst? According to media reports, she’s a “Harley-riding, pistol-packing,” “hog-castrating” farmer, Iraq veteran,... More

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TNR’s Scott Walker cover story owed a deep debt to some great local reporting

What’s worse than parachute reporting? “Journalists that don’t even get on the damn plane.”

DETROIT, MI — It goes like this: a local reporter digs deep and turns out a substantive story. Then a... More

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Investigating a $150 billion ‘black box’

CPI did stellar reporting on the Medicare Advantage “money grab,” despite agency stonewalling— here’s how others reporters can dig in

In a year-long investigation of Medicare Advantage (MA) plans, Fred Schulte, David Donald, Erin Durkin, and Chris Zubak-Skees of... More

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When ‘reader engagement’ is more than a buzzword

A collaborative investigation seeks to make readers care about rampant problems in Alabama’s prisons

MIAMI, FL — Journalistic investigations into prisons and jails are difficult. They’re hard because authorities often won’t cooperate and inmates... More

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Virginia’s governor didn’t say he’s going to ‘expand Medicaid’

But he won’t say he’s not, either! What’s a reporter to do?

CHARLESTON, SC -- It depends on what the meaning of the word "expansion" is. That might be the most appropriate... More

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Sticking with Washington’s ‘whistleblower judge flap’

Puget Sound Business Journal’s Valerie Bauman reported the heck out of a state insurance commission saga—and the broader issue of narrow networks

There are different ways to tell the story of what's happening with Washington's insurance exchange, a state marketplace called... More

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The revolution will be localized

Eric Cantor, David Brat, and covering the tea party

CHARLESTON, SC – In the days after Virginia Rep. Eric Cantor unexpectedly and soundly lost his primary last week, while... More

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Local cops can track your phone, and the government doesn’t want you to know how

A surveillance technique sparks questions about official secrecy. Reporters, keep digging!

MIAMI, FL — Police departments around the country increasingly are using sophisticated technology to surveil American citizens by monitoring cellphone... More

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The Plain Dealer drops PolitiFact, but keeps on factchecking

Truth in Numbers feature brings reader ratings to the truth squad movement

DETROIT, MI — Josh Mandel didn’t just lose his 2012 bid to unseat Sherrod Brown and claim one of Ohio’s... More

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Michigan’s Medicaid program is going to be great, say Michigan, Medicaid officials

Those claims deserve a closer look

A good piece from Kaiser Health News and USA Today this week about Michigan’s Medicaid expansion plan offers some pointers... More

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Allowing police to shoot someone without creating a record you can see

… And other bad ideas. Monitoring press freedom in the laboratories of democracy

In the 1932 case New State Ice Co. v. Liebmann, Justice Louis Brandeis dissented from the US Supreme Court’s decision... More

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As newspapers cut their opinion sections, African American voices take a disproportionate hit

Since 2008, newspapers have laid off, reassigned, or retired at least 21 black opinion writers

This week the city of Memphis, TN, lost its only female, African American metro columnist. The editor in chief of... More

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What’s health insurance really going to cost?

That’s the big question reporters must tackle, even as this year’s game of spin the rates takes off

Let the game begin! The game of spin the rates, that is. It's a game that pulled the media in... More

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Why the Orange County Register’s bold experiment hit the skids

Debt doomed Aaron Kushner’s dramatic expansion strategy, financial documents show

Aaron Kushner's massive investment in The Orange County Register—one I argued a year ago was "the most interesting--and important--experiment in... More

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A Chicago anti-violence program gets belated scrutiny

Why did it take nearly four years for Illinois reporters to start covering the story with gusto?

CHICAGO, IL — In February, Illinois Auditor General William Holland dropped what amounted to a political bombshell: a scathing audit... More

Why Obama’s statement on reporters’ arrests in Ferguson is hypocritical - The president defends reporters in Ferguson, but demands compliance from James Risen

Apple can’t hide from a 20-year-old reporter - The University of Michigan student gets behind the tech titan’s newest products

Finding James Foley - This 2013 story takes a look at GlobalPost’s search for the photojournalist

Gannett cribs from Advance Publications playbook for struggling newspapers - Staff compete for fewer jobs; ‘readers become the assignment editor’

First Look runs headlong into journalism’s two big problems - Growing pains at the Omidyar/Greenwald venture


The McDonald’s in Ferguson (LAT)

“Lately, the restaurant has taken on the appearance of a battered frontier outpost”

Tour guide wars at a Paris cemetery (WSJ)

“Because dead men tell no tales, visitors to Père Lachaise cemetery lend their ears to Bertrand Beyern”

Last call (Medium)

“The death of newspapers is sad, but the threatened loss of journalistic talent is catastrophic. If that’s you, it’s time to learn something outside the production routine of your current job.”

Maureen Dowd on James Risen (NYT)

“Risen may be trapped in Ibsen, but Obama is channeling Orwell”

Bloggingheads

Greg Marx discusses democracy and news with Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute

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