Government Corruption News StoriesExcerpts of Key Government Corruption News Stories in Major Media
Note: This comprehensive list of government corruption news stories is usually updated once a week. Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.
There's a hidden ingredient used as a whitener in an array of foods, from candies and pastries to cheeses and gum. It's called titanium dioxide, and while commonly used in the US, it's being banned in the EU as a possible carcinogen. The additive, also known as E171, joins a host of other chemicals that are banned in foods in the European Union but allowed in the US. These include Azodicarbonamide, a whitening agent found in food such as breads, bagels, pizza, and pastries in the US, which has been banned in the EU for more than a decade. Known as the "yoga mat'' chemical because it is often found in foamed plastic, the additive has been linked to asthma and respiratory issues in exposed workers and, when baked, to cancer in mice studies. Potassium bromate, an oxidizing agent often found in bread and dough and linked in animal studies to kidney and thyroid cancers, has been banned in the EU since 1990 but is still commonly used in the US. Brominated vegetable oil is also banned in the EU but is used as an emulsifier in citrus sodas and drinks in the US. Long-term exposure has been linked to headaches, memory loss and impaired coordination. The Food and Drug Administration classifies these food chemicals, and many others prohibited by the EU, as "generally recognized as safe". Chemical safety processes in the EU and US work in starkly different ways. Where European policy tends to take a precautionary approach – trying to prevent harm before it happens – the US is usually more reactive.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.
The Environmental Protection Agency is warning that two nonstick and stain-resistant compounds found in drinking water are more dangerous than previously thought and pose health risks even at levels so low they cannot currently be detected. The two compounds, known as PFOA and PFOS, have been voluntarily phased out by U.S. manufacturers, but there are a limited number of ongoing uses and the chemicals remain in the environment because they do not degrade over time. The compounds are part of a larger cluster of "forever chemicals" known as PFAS that have been used in consumer products and industry since the 1940s. The EPA on Wednesday issued nonbinding health advisories that set health risk thresholds for PFOA and PFOS to near zero, replacing 2016 guidelines that had set them at 70 parts per trillion. The chemicals are found in products including cardboard packaging, carpets and firefighting foam. The toxic industrial compounds are associated with serious health conditions, including cancer and reduced birth weight. The revised health guidelines are based on new science and consider lifetime exposure to the chemicals, the EPA said. Officials are no longer confident that PFAS levels allowed under the 2016 guidelines "do not have adverse health impacts," an EPA spokesman said. PFAS chemicals have been confirmed at nearly 400 military installations and at least 200 million people in the United States are drinking water contaminated with PFAS.
Guardian analysis of water samples from around the United States shows that the type of water testing relied on by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is so limited in scope that it is probably missing significant levels of PFAS pollutants. The undercount leaves regulators with an incomplete picture of the extent of PFAS contamination and reveals how millions of people may be facing an unknown health risk in their drinking water. The analysis checked water samples from PFAS hot spots around the country with two types of tests: an EPA-developed method that detects 30 types of the approximately 9,000 PFAS compounds, and another that checks for a marker of all PFAS. Seven of the nine samples collected showed higher levels of PFAS in water using the test that identifies markers for PFAS, than levels found when the water was tested using the EPA method – and at concentrations as much as 24 times greater. PFAS ... are often called "forever chemicals" because they don't fully break down, accumulating in the environment. Some are toxic at very low levels and have been linked to cancer, birth defects, kidney disease, liver problems, decreased immunity and other serious health issues. The limitations of the test used by state and federal regulators, which is called the EPA 537 method, virtually guarantees regulators will never have a full picture of contamination levels as industry churns out new compounds much faster than researchers can develop the science to measure them.
A police officer armed with a rifle watched the gunman in the Uvalde elementary school massacre walk toward the campus but did not fire while waiting for permission from a supervisor to shoot, according to a sweeping critique ... on the tactical response to the May tragedy. Some of the 21 victims at Robb Elementary School, including 19 children, possibly "could have been saved" on May 24 had they received medical attention sooner while police waited more than an hour before breaching the fourth-grade classroom, a review by a training center at Texas State University for active shooter situations found. The report is yet another damning assessment of how police failed to act on opportunities that might have saved lives in what became the deadliest school shooting in the U.S. since the slaughter at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012. The report ... follows testimony last month in which Col. Steven McCraw, director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, told the state Senate that the police response was an "abject failure." McCraw said police had enough officers and firepower on the scene of the Uvalde school massacre to have stopped the gunman three minutes after he entered the building, and they would have found the door to the classroom where he was holed up unlocked if they had bothered to check it. In the days and weeks after the shooting, authorities gave conflicting and incorrect accounts of what happened.
Note: It is just by chance that the police made this many deadly errors and lied in their reports? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption from reliable major media sources.
A new wave of anger swept through Uvalde on Tuesday over surveillance footage of police officers in body armor milling in the hallway of Robb Elementary School while a gunman carried out a massacre inside a fourth-grade classroom where 19 children and two teachers were killed. The video published Tuesday by the Austin American-Statesman is a disturbing 80-minute recording of what has been known for weeks now about one of the deadliest school shootings in U.S. history: that heavily armed police officers, some armed with rifles and bulletproof shields, massed in the hallway and waited more than an hour before going inside and stopping the May 24 slayings. But the footage, which until now had not surfaced publicly, anguished Uvalde residents anew and redoubled calls in the small South Texas city for accountability and explanations. The footage from a hallway camera inside the school shows the gunman entering the building with an AR-15 style rifle and includes 911 tape of a teacher screaming, "Get down! Get in your rooms! Get in your rooms!" Two officers approach the classrooms minutes after the gunman enters, then run back amid the sounds of gunfire. As the gunman first approaches the classrooms a child whose image is blurred can be seen poking their head around a corner down the hallway and then running back while shots ring out.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption from reliable major media sources.
If a summer COVID surge, a monkeypox outbreak, inflation and a continuing war in Europe weren't enough to worry about – how about preparing for a nuclear attack? Mayor Eric Adams defended New York City's newest PSA on Tuesday, saying a nuclear attack preparedness spot from the Office of Emergency Management was a "great idea" born out of the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine. The campaign launched Monday and features a short PSA outlining three steps that New Yorkers can take "as the threat landscape continues to evolve." There are no imminent nuclear threats to New York City, Adams emphasized, but there will be a series of emergency management ads highlighting preparedness efforts. Emergency management officials say it's important to know the steps to stay safe even if the likelihood of a nuclear attack in NYC in the immediate future is quite low. Still, many New Yorkers were left asking, "Why now?" Some of a certain age saw the PSA as a sort-of blast from the past, something not seen in this country since the 1970s when messages showing cartoon turtles softening the then-very real looming threat of nuclear annihilation. In the event of a nuclear incident, the PSA advises the following actions: Get inside: Move indoors and away from any windows. Stay inside: Close all doors and window, and move into the basement if you have one. Stay tuned and stay put: Follow media for latest details and watch for officials alerts when its safe to go outside.
Note: Fear mongering, anyone? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.
One woman carried a ruler at FBI headquarters so she could smack James Hendricks' hands when he reached for her legs and breasts. Another went home shaken after he tugged on her ear and kissed her cheek during a closed-door meeting. And when Hendricks went on to lead the FBI's field office in Albany, New York, in 2018, colleagues described him as a "skilled predator" who leered at women in the workplace, touched them inappropriately and asked one to have sex in a conference room, according to a newly released federal report. Hendricks quietly retired last year as a special agent in charge after the Office of Inspector General – the Justice Department's internal watchdog – concluded he sexually harassed eight female subordinates in one of the FBI's most egregious known cases of sexual misconduct. Hendricks was among several senior FBI officials highlighted in an AP investigation last year that found a pattern of supervisors avoiding discipline – and retiring with full benefits – even after claims of sexual misconduct against them were substantiated. The details of Hendricks' sexual harassment [were] outlined in a 52-page report obtained under the Freedom of Information Act. The OIG blacked out Hendricks' name in the report, but he was identified by law enforcement officials familiar with his case. Drawing on interviews with more than a dozen FBI officials, the report traces Hendricks' harassment to his time at FBI headquarters, where he served as a section chief in the Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate.
After 14 years of legal battles, a federal court ordered the Environmental Protection Agency to take actions that will likely force the neurotoxic pesticide chlorpyrifos off the market. The federal agency has for years been considering mounting evidence that links the pesticide to brain damage in children – including loss of IQ, learning difficulties, ADHD, and autism – but, as the court acknowledged, has repeatedly delayed taking action. "Rather than ban the pesticide or reduce the tolerances to levels that the EPA could find were reasonably certain to cause no harm, the EPA sought to evade through delay tactics its plain statutory duty," Judge Jed S. Rakoff wrote in his decision. "During that time, the EPA's egregious delay exposed a generation of American children to unsafe levels of chlorpyrifos," he wrote, and ordered the EPA to issue a final regulation within 60 days. More than 5 million pounds of chlorpyrifos were applied to crops in 2017, according to the most recent data. The EPA was poised to ban chlorpyrifos in 2016, but the Trump EPA changed course. The reversal, made under EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, has been tied to a $1 million contribution to President Donald Trump's inaugural fund from Dow Chemical Company, now known as Corteva, which was the primary producer of chlorpyrifos. Patti Goldman, an attorney at Earthjustice who has been overseeing the chlorpyrifos litigation since 2014, said the disparity between the science and the EPA's refusal to act reached new heights during the Trump years.
Human rights activists, journalists and lawyers across the world have been targeted by authoritarian governments using hacking software sold by the Israeli surveillance company NSO Group, according to an investigation into a massive data leak. The investigation by the Guardian and 16 other media organisations suggests widespread and continuing abuse of NSO's hacking spyware, Pegasus. Pegasus is a malware that infects iPhones and Android devices to enable operators of the tool to extract messages, photos and emails, record calls and secretly activate microphones. The leak contains a list of more than 50,000 phone numbers that, it is believed, have been identified as those of people of interest by clients of NSO since 2016. The numbers of more than 180 journalists are listed in the data, including reporters, editors and executives at the Financial Times, CNN, the New York Times, France 24, the Economist, Associated Press and Reuters. The phone number of a freelance Mexican reporter, Cecilio Pineda Birto, was found in the list, apparently of interest to a Mexican client in the weeks leading up to his murder, when his killers were able to locate him at a carwash. He was among at least 25 Mexican journalists apparently selected as candidates for surveillance. The broad array of numbers in the list belonging to people who seemingly have no connection to criminality suggests some NSO clients are breaching their contracts with the company, spying on pro-democracy activists and journalists.
Note: Read more about how NSO Group spyware was used against journalists and activists by the Mexican government. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.
The U.N. climate report released Monday presents a major leap forward in predicting how geoengineering to limit global warming might affect the planet, although scientists said the greatest hurdle remains deciding whether to use the controversial methods. Geoengineering involves large-scale interventions that shift the climate, generally with an aim of cooling the earth. The United Nations panel addressed two types of geoengineering in the report - solar radiation management and greenhouse gas removal. Solar radiation management techniques generally control how much sunlight is reflected back out into space. For example, humans could spray sulfate aerosols - tiny reflective particles - into the stratosphere ... to reflect more sunlight back into space, which lowers global temperatures. But sulfate aerosols have the side effect of also lowering average precipitation. While some regions could gain in an artificially cooler world, others could suffer by, for example, no longer having conditions to grow crops.
Note: Chemtrails anyone? Explore evidence that Spain is spraying chemtrails as part of a secret UN program. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on climate change from reliable major media sources.
Within minutes of receiving a complaint from four Environmental Protection Agency whistleblowers in late June, an agency official shared the document with six EPA staffers, including at least one who was named in it, according to records obtained through the Freedom of Information Act. The records – more than 1,000 pages of internal emails – also show that within 24 hours EPA officials sent the whistleblowers' complaint to other staff members who had been named in it. Two days later, the named employees met to discuss it. The scientists' disclosure laid out allegations of corruption within the EPA's New Chemicals Division and provided detailed evidence that managers and high-level agency officials had deliberately tampered with numerous chemical assessments, sometimes deleting hazards from them and altering their conclusions. The four scientists who worked in the division decided to speak up about the behavior they had witnessed because they feared it could have public health consequences. And they hoped that by carefully documenting and making public their allegations they would spark a thorough investigation and bring an end to the problems. While the sharing of the disclosure widely within the agency was not a violation of law, several experts in the handling of whistleblower complaints said it was troubling. "Sending it around to everybody who's mentioned in it, that's insane," said Adam Arnold ... at the Government Accountability Project.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.
The Pentagon is spending more and more research-and-development dollars on weapons that stun, scare, entangle or nauseate – anything but kill. The U.S.'s nonlethal-weapons programs are drawing their own fire, mostly from human-rights activists who contend that the technologies being developed will be deployed to suppress dissent and that they defy international weapons treaties. Imagine a cross between a microwave oven and a Star Trek phaser: a tight, focused beam of energy that flash-heats its target from a distance. Directed energy beams do not burn flesh, but they do create an unbearably painful burning sensation. The Air Force Research Laboratory has already spent $40 million on a humvee-mounted directed-energy weapon. Further out on the horizon, the line between weapons development and science fiction becomes perilously thin. Even their supporters agree that "nonlethal weapons" is a dangerous misnomer. Any of these devices has the potential to injure and kill. A chemical-weapons watchdog organization called the Sunshine Project has obtained evidence that the U.S. is considering some projects that appear to take us beyond the bounds of good sense: bioengineered bacteria designed to eat asphalt, fuel and body armor, or faster-acting, weaponized forms of antidepressants, opiates and so-called "club drugs" that could be rapidly administered to unruly crowds. Such research is illegal under international law and could open up terrifying scenarios for abuse.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on non-lethal weapons from reliable major media sources.
A feminist advocacy organization sued the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation on Wednesday, accusing the agency of putting female prisoners at risk by housing biological males in women's prisons. The Women's Liberation Front lawsuit ... argues that the state department of corrections of is violating the First, Eighth and 14th amendments with a new law known as the Transgender Respect, Agency, and Dignity Act, or SB 132. Plaintiff Krystal Gonzalez says she was sexually assaulted by a biological male who was transferred to Central California Women's Facility under the law. According to the suit, when Gonzalez filed a complaint and requested to be housed away from men the prison's response called her alleged attacker a "transgender woman with a penis." "Krystal does not believe that women have penises and the psychological distress caused by her assault is exacerbated by the prison's refusal to acknowledge the sex of her perpetrator," the lawsuit says. [The law] requires the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to "house transgender, gender-nonconforming and intersex (TGI) individuals in a manner that matches their gender identity while supporting health and safety." Under the law, the prison system must house the individual in a "correctional facility designated for men or women based on the individual's preference." A total of 295 inmates who were housed in an institution for males had requested to be moved to a women's facility.
Note: Read lots more on the irony and unfairness of this case in this Matt Taibbi article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on prison system corruption from reliable major media sources.
The Justice Department opened a civil rights investigation Thursday of the Louisiana State Police, launching the review after a series of videos showed officers brutally beating Black motorists. One particularly violent video showed state troopers punching, stunning, and dragging an unarmed man, Ronald Greene, as he apologized for failing to stop during a high-speed chase in 2019. He died shortly after, but state police initially told his family that he was killed when his car hit a tree. "We find significant justification to investigate whether Louisiana State Police engages in excessive force and in racially discriminatory policing," said Kristen Clarke, the assistant attorney general in charge of the civil rights division. State Police Superintendent Lamar Davis has said he would welcome the Justice Department investigation. Two-thirds of his agency's uses of force have been directed at Black people, he [said]. Greene's arrest was one of least a dozen over the past 10 years in which state police troopers or their superiors ignored or concealed evidence of beatings. Under Attorney General Merrick Garland, the Justice Department has opened similar investigations of police departments in Minneapolis after the death of George Floyd and in Louisville, Kentucky, following the death of Breonna Taylor.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption from reliable major media sources.
More than 90 women who say they were sexually assaulted by Lawrence G. Nassar, the former doctor for U.S.A. Gymnastics who was convicted on state sexual abuse charges, filed lawsuits on Wednesday against the F.B.I. for its failure to investigate him when it received credible information about his crimes. The lawsuits come two weeks after the Justice Department decided not to prosecute two former F.B.I. agents accused of bungling the bureau's 2015 investigation into Mr. Nassar, allowing him to assault more than 70 girls and women for over a year before Michigan authorities arrested him. The agents were accused by the Justice Department's own watchdog of making false statements about the matter. In the fall, Christopher A. Wray, the F.B.I. director, testified to Congress that "there were people at the F.B.I. who had their chance to stop this monster back in 2015 and failed." The plaintiffs include the Olympic gymnastics gold medalists Simone Biles, Aly Raisman and McKayla Maroney. "My fellow survivors and I were betrayed by every institution that was supposed to protect us – the U.S. Olympic Committee, U.S.A. Gymnastics, the F.B.I. and now the Department of Justice," Ms. Maroney said. "It is clear that the only path to justice and healing is through the legal process," she added. Mr. Nassar, who was sentenced to up to 175 years in prison, was accused of molesting hundreds of girls and women, including many members of the 2012 and 2016 U.S. Olympic gymnastics teams.
In October 1995 ... the Scottish Office commissioned a research project from the Aberdeen-based Rowett Research Institute into the effect of GM crops on animal nutrition and the environment. This included, for the first time, feeding GM potatoes to rats to see if they had any harmful effects on their guts, bodies, metabolism and health. A former senior Scottish Office official involved in commissioning the project told the Guardian there was "little regard" at the time for research into the human nutritional and environmental consequences of GM foods. Dr Arpad Pusztai, a senior research scientist at the Rowett, beat off 28 other tenders to coordinate the project. The preliminary results of Dr Pusztai's work had begun to show unexpected and worrying changes in the size and weight of the rats' bodily organs. The team found liver and heart sizes were decreasing. Worse still, the brain was getting smaller. There were also indications of a weakening of the immune system. Granada TV's World in Action approached Dr Pusztai and ... with the institute's consent he gave an interview. Dr Pusztai told ITV viewers that he would not eat GM food. He found it "very, very unfair to use our fellow citizens as guinea pigs. We have to find [the results] in the laboratory," he insisted. Two days later Dr Pusztai was summarily suspended and forced to retire by the Rowett Institute's director, Professor Philip James, who had personally cleared the interview with Granada.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on GMOs from reliable major media sources.
Uvalde city officials are using a legal loophole and several other broad exemptions in Texas to prevent the release of police records related to last month's mass shooting that left 19 children and two teachers dead, according to a letter obtained by NPR. Since the May 24 shooting at Robb Elementary School, law enforcement officials have provided little and conflicting information, amid mounting public pressure for transparency. The Texas Department of Public Safety, which is leading the state investigation, previously said that some accounts of the events were preliminary and may change as more witnesses are interviewed. The City of Uvalde has hired a private law firm to make its case, which cited the "dead suspect loophole," to deny the release of information because the gunman died in police custody. The legal exception bars the public disclosure of information pertaining to crimes in which no one has been convicted. The Texas Attorney General's Office has ruled that the exception applies when a suspect is dead. The maneuver has been used repeatedly by Texas law enforcement agencies to claim they're not required to turn over the requested information because a criminal case is still pending, even though the suspect is dead. The loophole was established in the 1990s to protect people who were wrongfully accused or whose cases were dismissed, said Kelley Shannon, executive director of the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas. "It is meant to protect the innocent," Shannon said.
Nearly a month after a gunman killed 19 students and two teachers inside Robb Elementary School, shattering a West Texas community, a litany of key questions about the police response remain unanswered. The shifting narrative from state and local leaders in the massacre's aftermath could threaten to exacerbate the trauma for those affected. "These types of tragedies can tear communities apart," said John Cohen, a former senior Homeland Security official who is now an ABC News contributor. "One of the ways the healing process can begin is for the community to have a clear understanding of what happened, and of what will be done to prevent something similar from happening again." As families of the victims lay their loved ones to rest, residents of Uvalde continue to hope for answers. They may start to get some on Tuesday, when a Texas House panel convenes to hear testimony regarding the shooting. Since the very first days after the attack, law enforcement officials have said their response was stymied by ... a locked door. But now surveillance video shows that police never tried to open the door. Two months before the mass shooting, the Uvalde school district hosted an all-day training session for local police and other school-based law enforcement officers that was focused on "active shooter response." But basic training protocols - including those involving communication channels and chain of command - went unheeded.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption from reliable major media sources.
Security footage shows cops at the Uvalde, Texas school massacre waited 77 minutes before even trying to open the doors to two classrooms where the shooter killed 19 children and two teachers last month, a new report said. The latest revelation, published Saturday by The San Antonio Express News, is the latest detail that shows a botched police response to the massacre, which is now under investigation by the Texas Department of Public Safety. Video shows that gunman Salvador Ramos, 18, was able to open the door to classroom 111 on May 24, even though it was supposed to lock automatically when shut. Once inside the classroom, Ramos was able to access classroom 112 through another interior door. It was unclear if the door was locked while Ramos conducted the shooting spree, but police did not even check or try to open it, despite having access to a Halligan tool which could have broken the lock. Uvalde school district police Chief Pete Arredondo was in charge of the operation. He previously told The Texas Tribune that he waited for 40 minutes for keys from the custodian to try to open the classroom door. Finally, at 12:50 p.m., police breached the door and shot and killed the suspect who had first broken into the school at 11:33 a.m. through an exterior door that had also failed to automatically lock. Texas investigators say Arredondo mistakenly treated the shooting as a barricaded suspect incident instead of an active shooter situation.
Two Uvalde city police officers passed up a fleeting chance to shoot a gunman outside Robb Elementary School before he went on to kill 21 people inside the school, a senior sheriff's deputy told The New York Times. That would mean a second missed opportunity for officers to stop Salvador Ramos before the May 24 rampage inside the school that killed 19 children and two teachers. Officials said that a school district police drove past Ramos without seeing him in the school parking lot. The unidentified officers, one of whom was armed with an AR-15-style rifle, said they feared hitting children playing in the line of fire outside the school, Chief Deputy Ricardo Rios of nearby Zavalla County told the newspaper. Rios said he had shared the information with a special Test House committee investigating the school massacre. Uvalde police officials agreed Friday to speak to the committee investigating, according to a Republican lawmaker leading the probe who had begun to publicly question why the officers were not cooperating sooner. "Took a little bit longer than we initially had expected," state Rep. Dustin Burrows said. On Thursday, Burrows signaled impatience with Uvalde police, tweeting that most people had fully cooperated with their investigation "to help determine the facts" and that he didn't understand why the city's police force "would not want the same." He did not say which members of the department will meet with the committee, which is set to continue questioning witnesses in Uvalde on Monday.
Important Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.