President Franklin Roosevelt signed the ambitious but controversial Tennessee Valley Authority Act 80 years ago on May 18, 1933, to provide navigation, flood control, electricity generation, fertilizer manufacturing, and economic development in the Tennessee Valley, a region particularly affected by the Great Depression.
Recently read a horrifying account of Google’s presence in the Midwest, part of an ongoing effort to privatize (and essentially preclude) internet access in poorer rural communities while using the wealthier demographic as a marketing tool (Harper’s, April 2013). Why have we so moved away from public access to basic utilities that are absolutely human necessities?—
The other point…which we’re not hearing frequently or loudly enough…is a real scandal: ‘the social welfare tax exemption is being used by existing 501(c)(4) organizations, including some very large ones, to promote partisan political interests—the very activity Congress has explicitly prohibited for a century.’ In other words, Karl Rove and Crossroads. This is a serious issue, one deserving of investigation. But Republicans could be biting off more than they can chew if it causes a bright light to be shone on how politically partisan organizations, like Rove’s, are exploiting the law.