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Linda Keenan
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Linda Erin Keenan is the author of the satire collection Suburgatory, which helped inspire the ABC sitcom of the same name.

She collaborated with social anthropologist Janine Wedel, author of Shadow Elite, on dozens of columns involving new forms of corruption in public policy.

Before that, Keenan was a senior producer/head writer for CNN during 9/11, the Afghanistan and Iraq wars and several national elections.

Entries by Linda Keenan

Think The Boy Scout Decision Didn't Go Far Enough? Then Join Scouts TODAY

(15) Comments | Posted May 24, 2013 | 10:53 AM

I rejoined Cub Scouts in recent months after quitting in protest last year. At the same time, I joined the inclusive scouting movement, and I've been impressed by one gay Scout volunteer in particular. The near-term goal for most kids his age might be, how do I score...

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As the GOP Crowd Cheers, America's Jobless and Hopeless Are Shamed Again

(11) Comments | Posted October 26, 2011 | 2:15 PM

Forget about pizza, no one can deliver up a sh*t sandwich like those GOP debate crowds. Last Tuesday, millions of jobless Americans got served up a steaming plate of scorn: hands slapping together and a sea of smug grins as Herman Cain stood by his mantra: when faced...

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The Taxophobe Next Door: Meet The Clueless 1% in My Own "Suburgatory"

(45) Comments | Posted October 13, 2011 | 7:20 AM

I think of him as the Taxophobe Next Door, a neighbor of sorts, one of the clueless, thoughtless 1% of the place I call Suburgatory. That's the title of my new satire compilation (and ABC sitcom), which springs from life in three affluent suburbs since having my son...

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Occupied Afghanistan: 10 Years of Affluent Ignorance of American Wars

(22) Comments | Posted October 7, 2011 | 8:14 AM

It's 10 years since the U.S. invaded Afghanistan. And why would my new satire collection -- Suburgatory -- heavy on take-downs of affluent suburban obsessions - feature any mention at all about war? (See the piece below if you want to skip what inspired it. Lord knows I...

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With Obama's "Dinner Date," Wall Street's Elite Wins... Again

(146) Comments | Posted June 15, 2011 | 8:41 AM

"We've seen battalions of financial industry lobbyists...firms spend[ing] millions to influence the outcome of this debate....I believe we can and must put this kind of cynical politics aside." -President Obama's speech to Wall Street, Cooper Union, April 22, 2010.

Put cynical politics aside? Clearly, that is so...

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How the Top 1 Percent Capture Our Regulators... and the American Dream

(203) Comments | Posted May 16, 2011 | 8:26 AM

In describing the intense lobbying efforts by Comcast last year to close its merger with NBC Universal, legal scholar Susan Crawford put it this way to the New York Times: "It's about as subtle as a wet fish in the face."

That makes last week's announcement by Federal...

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Why Democrats Taking Secret Money Risk the High Cost of Copying Republicans

(163) Comments | Posted May 5, 2011 | 8:32 AM

It is telling that perhaps the most strident critic of a decision last week by some top Democrats to amass secret donations is a campaign finance crusader who is now out of power. Former U.S. Senator Russ Feingold refused secret campaign cash from "non-profit" outside groups this past fall. And...

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How the Richest "1 Percent" Keep Rewarding Themselves for Epic Failure

(686) Comments | Posted April 7, 2011 | 8:34 AM

No, this was no April Fool's Joke, said the outraged Louisiana Attorney General Buddy Caldwell. Transocean, which owned and operated the doomed Deepwater Horizon rig, put out filings April 1, stating that it had actually had its "best year in safety performance" and was rewarding its executives with...

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Shadow Lobbyists & The "Scholars-for-Dollars" Who Helped Rebrand Libya

(1) Comments | Posted March 24, 2011 | 7:12 AM

As an international coalition bombards Libya, it's important to gauge the power of another blitz carried out by a very different, elite international coalition: the propaganda blitz conducted by the Harvard-powered consulting firm Monitor Group, using illustrious academics and public intellectuals from both sides of the Atlantic to...

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Shadow Elite: Libya and the Consummate Shadow Lobbyist -- Neocon Richard Perle

(65) Comments | Posted March 3, 2011 | 5:47 AM

Ever wonder how Libya's terrible image began showing some signs of improvement in recent years? Or how one of Gaddafi's sons would find himself named a "Young Global Leader" at Davos -- the ultimate insider's club?

The answer came in reports last week from Politico, the Huffington Post...

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Shadow Elite: Grover Norquist -- Many GOP Legislators Privately Favor Afghanistan Withdrawal

(14) Comments | Posted February 17, 2011 | 6:21 AM

Grover Norquist, toast of the left?

Well, not quite, but the longtime anti-tax activist has been winning favorable mention in seemingly unusual quarters recently, for calling on his GOP and conservative brethren to at least consider debate on withdrawing from Afghanistan. With the White House this week putting out its fiscal...

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Shadow Elite: Eisenhower's Dark Vision Realized - The Military-Industrial Complex At 50

(92) Comments | Posted January 13, 2011 | 6:27 AM

President Eisenhower was, of course, prophetic when he warned 50 years ago about the "grave implications" of the military-industrial complex. But while he was certainly dead-on about the big picture, we can imagine even he might be surprised by the dirty details of how that "complex" has evolved since his...

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Shadow Elite: Do Economists Need a Code of Ethics?

(80) Comments | Posted January 6, 2011 | 6:41 AM

"An ethical code for economists? That's a bit like adopting a chastity vow at the Bunny Ranch."

-reader comment to the New York Times,
January 4, 2011

This comment is striking, and not just because it manages to put "economists" and "Bunny Ranch" in the same unlikely...

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10 Shadow Elitists of the Decade

(10) Comments | Posted December 23, 2010 | 7:08 AM

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Shadow Elite: The "Secretive" Bankers Who Love Derivatives and Hate the Free Market

(94) Comments | Posted December 16, 2010 | 6:56 AM

Surely if you asked the bankers at the center of the Sunday New York Times investigation -- "A Secretive Banking Elite Rules Trading in Derivatives" -- if they hate the free market, they would be aghast. But we oppose onerous taxation! We support fair and vigorous competition! Look,...

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Shadow Elite: Should We Believe Chertoff On Cyber-War?

(7) Comments | Posted December 9, 2010 | 6:14 AM

What was one of the crucial revelations of the latest WikiLeaks dump? According to
former Homeland Security chief Michael Chertoff, we should be deeply concerned that the leak happened at all. He appeared early last week on Bloomberg TV and nearly a third of the time was...

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Shadow Elite: Truthiness, Porn and the Real Problem With Reality TV

(43) Comments | Posted November 18, 2010 | 6:41 AM

What do the makers of reality TV and the makers of pornography have in common with some of America's top power brokers? It may be less of a stretch than it sounds. All three exploit (and have helped usher in) a culture of truthiness, resulting in a polarized citizenry content...

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Shadow Elite: Government & "Big Cheese"

(3) Comments | Posted November 11, 2010 | 7:32 AM

For anyone concerned about the obesity epidemic, like, say, the First Lady, documents posted on the New York Times website this Sunday make for an infuriating read. They feature a group called Dairy Management Inc., which strategized with Domino's to make a pizza line with 40 percent more...

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Shadow Elite: Election 2010 -- Attack of the Stealth Financiers

(29) Comments | Posted November 4, 2010 | 7:02 AM

It wasn't just the Democrats who took a beating on Tuesday. Traditional party institutions seemed passe this election season, while more novel and less accountable agents of influence grabbed headlines. The powerhouse organizing modes for both parties were not just longstanding entities, but also dynamic and very new organizations and...

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Shadow Elite: Will the Real Juan Williams Please Stand Up?

(42) Comments | Posted October 28, 2010 | 7:25 AM

Why does the saga of Juan Williams bring back memories of Eastern Europe after the fall of communism? Janine is a social anthropologist who studied the mechanisms of power there both before and after communism, and she recalls the officials she interviewed in communism's aftermath who gave her two, three,...

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