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The 13th Annual Muzzle Awards

A year and a half into the Age of Obama, we are learning a lesson we should have figured out long ago — that repression, once in place, is rarely rolled back all the way, and that liberals no less than conservatives are reluctant to give up power.
A look at the dishonorable enemies of free speech and personal liberty in New England
By DAN KENNEDY  |  July 02, 2010
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Unmaking a bad federal law

It's been a depressing stretch for supporters of marriage equality.
Justice for Some
By ADAM REILLY  |  November 27, 2009
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You're all guilty!

Silverglate's thesis is as provocative as it is simple: justice has become sufficiently perverted in this nation that federal prosecutors, if they put their minds to it, could find a way to indict almost any one of us for almost anything. It is a truly r
In his new book, Three Felonies a Day , Harvey Silverglate dissects the corrupt justice practiced by federal prosecutors
By PETER KADZIS  |  September 25, 2009
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The 12th Annual Muzzle Awards

With the era of repression and secrecy fostered by George W. Bush and Dick Cheney finally over, this should be the best of times for freedom of expression, open government, and civil liberties. Yet change comes slowly.
A look at the dishonorable enemies of free speech and personal liberty in New England.
By DAN KENNEDY  |  July 10, 2009
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Hitting the brakes

The last time that “busing” was a buzzword around Boston, John Havlicek and Jo Jo White were the only ebony-and-ivory cronies shooting hoops in harmony.
With Boston public schools facing a $107 million budget gap, busing is once again in the crosshairs
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 11, 2009

Providence lawyer plays pioneering role in suing terrorists

The use of Predator drones and covert Special Forces teams is bound to be satisfying for many victims of terrorism.
National Security
By BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  January 21, 2009


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A tale of two TV stories

Bill Rappleye, of WJAR-TV, was pursuing the adversarial relationship between reporters and elected officials when he asked Governor Carcieri to explain why he isn’t violating the state’s anti-nepotism law.
Hidden influence can be a bigger concern than aggressive reporters
By IAN DONNIS  |  June 18, 2008
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Naming names and naming rights

P+J are keeping a close eye on the US District Court trial of the two former CVS execs accused of illegally hiring John “My Sharona” Celona, the disgraced former state senator.
What lies ahead in the trial of two former CVS officials?
By PHILLIPE + JORGE  |  May 21, 2008
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Can’t anybody here play this game?

The need to reinvent Rhode Island’s economic infrastructure — which remains anemic compared with most of its neighbors in New England — is more urgent than ever.
Rhode Island remains trapped between economic distress and missed opportunities
By IAN DONNIS  |  May 21, 2008
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State sued over inmate’s death

As severely mentally ill Maine State Prison inmate Ryan Rideout prepared to hang himself from a sprinkler in his cell on the night of October 5, 2006, other inmates frantically pressed panic buttons in their cells.
Silencing alarms
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  March 05, 2008
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The Station’s long shadow

For most Rhode Islanders, the Station nightclub conflagration — the worst disaster in the state since the hurricane of 1938 — is like a receding object in a rearview mirror.
Five years on, getting by remains a day-to-day challenge for some of those touched by the fire
By IAN DONNIS  |  February 20, 2008


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Bishop’s puzzlement on pro-choice Catholics is misplaced

Dogma doesn’t pay the rent, feed a hungry child, or pay for medicine; nor do arrogance, hypocrisy, or feigned bewilderment.
Clergy matters
By MARY ANN SORRENTINO  |  January 02, 2008
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US Attorney Corrente and CVS CEO Ryan: two ‘regular guys’

The closely watched ongoing investigation of state legislators stars Robert Clark Corrente as the focused US attorney and Tom Ryan as the more enigmatic CVS CEO.
Probing matters
By MARY ANN SORRENTINO  |  December 05, 2007
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Ouch!

Things haven’t been going well as of late for Needham-based chronic-pain specialist Dr. Joseph Zolot.
The DEA’s bad-faith war on pain doctors
By HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  September 26, 2007

Blueprint for disaster

It figures that Attorney General Martha Coakley would scapegoat an epoxy manufacturer for the Big Dig disaster.
Letters to the Boston editor: September 7, 2007
By BOSTON PHOENIX LETTERS  |  September 05, 2007
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Apolitical justice

When they began their careers in the 1960s, few would have predicted that TV broadcaster Dan Rea and US District Court Judge Nancy Gertner would make history together.
Lefts and rights
By MIKE MILIARD  |  August 15, 2007


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Buddymania!

Buddy Cianci was already making the media wait.
A Rhode Island icon sails back into the limelight  
By IAN DONNIS  |  August 02, 2007

Speech therapy

The Muzzle Awards have been chronicling the worst Free Speech violations for a decade. Here are some of the lowlights from the past 10 years.
The Muzzles through the ages: 10 years of First Ammendment deterioration
By DAN KENNEDY  |  July 03, 2007
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A squandered opportunity for more competition

For those familiar with David Radler, the cuts at Rhode Island Suburban Newspapers seemed inevitable.
Media
By IAN DONNIS  |  May 09, 2007
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Pressing the case

In the aftermath of I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby’s perjury conviction last week, the journalistic fallout of the case remains a subject of intense interest for reporters and legal observers.  
A limited federal shield law would be better than the post-Libby status quo
By JIM TARICANI  |  March 14, 2007

BeloJo celebrates Black History Month

Is it just Phillipe & Jorge, but something seemed patently wrong, if not offensive, when the Urinal ran a headline on the top of its February 20 Vo Dilun section that read: “Black lawyer named to judicial panel.”
Carcieri appointment wins Casa Diablo approval
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE  |  February 21, 2007


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Rhode Island in ’06: same as it ever was

Imagine a year when the Narragansett Indians were energetically pitching a casino, cynical Rhode Islanders had plenty of reason to reinforce their jaundiced views, and state house Democrats maintained the upper hand over hapless Republican opponents with
Democrats on top, a casino quest, and a dose of corruption
By IAN DONNIS  |  December 20, 2006
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Sound off

Anyone who wants to understand the perils of being a citizen journalist in an age of DIY media should consider the case of Freeman Z.
One citizen journalist’s saga may bode poorly for the new arm of the press
By MIKE MILIARD  |  December 13, 2006
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Is Rhode Island still a state for sale?

As the star witness of federal prosecutors, former state senator John Celona of North Providence has sang chapter and verse about his arrogant, shameless, and corrupt dealings while having worked for an affiliate of Roger Williams Medical Center.
The shoe yet to drop is the extent of private sector responsibility
By IAN DONNIS  |  September 27, 2006
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Boston agrees to pay $3.2 million to Stephan Cowans

Finally giving Stephan Cowans some measure of justice for the six and a half years he spent in prison for a crime he did not commit, the City of Boston has agreed to pay $3.2 million to settle a civil lawsuit, the Phoenix has learned.
Wrongfully-convicted Mattapan man’s case exposed incompetent fingerprint unit
By DAVID S. BERNSTEIN  |  August 10, 2006
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Feel-good movie of the summer

With the upcoming November elections poised to determine the future of Congress, what better gift could Republicans ask for than a popular Hollywood movie that conjures the image that for five years has granted them power and impunity? Watch the trai
Oliver Stone: from the Hollywood crackpot of JFK to the Republican sellout of World Trade Center
By PETER KEOUGH  |  August 10, 2006


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Return of the rogue

In December 2002, when Vincent A. “Buddy” Cianci stepped into a car for the drive to his new home at a federal prison in Fort Dix, New Jersey, some thought that life in Rhode Island would never be the same.
Will Buddy Cianci try to make life difficult for Cicilline?
By IAN DONNIS  |  July 12, 2006
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Flower power

Stealing someone’s screenplay is serious stuff.
Did Jim Jarmusch steal the screenplay?
By GERALD PEARY  |  July 12, 2006
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The Ninth Annual Muzzle Awards

Nearly five years after the terrorist attacks of 9/11, our political culture has been warped beyond recognition.
Our annual New England roundup of those who undermined freedom of speech and civil liberties. But first, a word about George W. Bush.
By DAN KENNEDY  |  July 04, 2006
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Justice Department tries to dismiss EFF’s wiretapping suit

As we learn more and more about the scope and extent of the National Security Agency’s warrantless wiretapping program, we’re also learning — to the surprise of precisely no one — how difficult it will be to challenge such domestic espionage in court.
Grapevine justice
By MIKE MILIARD  |  May 17, 2006