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Mark Green
Mark Green has been a public interest lawyer, an elected public official, author, tv/radio commentator and the president of Air America Radio.

He graduated with honors from both Cornell University School of Arts & Sciences (1967) and then Harvard Law School (1970), where he was editor-in-chief of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review.

Becoming a member of the Washington, D.C. Bar (and later the New York State Bar), he spent 10 years in the 1970s working with Ralph Nader, ultimately running Public Citizen's Congress Watch, the largest consumer lobbying group in D.C. In 1982, The Nation magazine said, "Next to Nader himself, Mark is the leading public interest lawyer of his generation."

In 1981, Mark founded and ran the Democracy Project, a public policy institute in New York City. Over the next three decades, he either ran the Democracy Project or held office (from 1989 to 2001) as the NYC Consumer Affairs Commissioner and then the elected Public Advocate for New York City.


From 1990 to 1993, in the administration of Mayor David Dinkins, he served as the Consumer Affairs Commissioner, leading a 340-person, $17-million agency that licensed 45,000 businesses in 72 lines of commerce. Mark left the post in 1993 to run to become the City's first Public Advocate. He was elected with 60% of the vote and was re-elected with 73% in 1997. He served from 1993-2001.

As a consumer prosecutor and public advocate, Mark established numerous local and national precedents: exposing and helping to break up the mob garbage cartel; enacting the law protecting the victims of domestic violence from unjust firings; filing the FTC petition that led to the elimination of Joe Camel ads addicting children; and twice successfully suing Mayor Giuliani because of racial profiling and police misconduct (see for more details).

In 2001 he won the Democratic nomination for Mayor, losing by two points to Michael Bloomberg in the general election.


Since 1970, Mark has written or edited 22 books -- ranging from the #1 best-selling Who Runs Congress? (1972 and three later editions) to Reagan's Reign of Error (1983 and 1987), to an agency-by-agency transition volume for incoming President Bill Clinton, Changing America: Blueprints for the New Administration (1993).

His most recent books are The Book on Bush: How George W. (Mis)leads America (with Eric Alterman, 2004), Losing our Democracy: How Bush, the Far Right and Big Business are Betraying Americans (2006), and Change for America, a 700 page transition report for the 44th President that he published with John Podesta and the Center for American Progress

He's appeared several hundred times on programs like CNN's Crossfire debating Pat Buchanan and Bob Novak; PBS's Firing Line with William F. Buckley; and MSNBC's Hardball. From 2002-2008, he was a regular panelist with Ed Koch and Al D'Amato on NY1's weekly public affairs segment, "Wiseguys."

In 2002, Mark was the "Distinguished Visiting Lecturer" at NYU Law School and then for five years taught a freshman honors seminar at the Arts College. He became president of Air America Radio in 2007, taking it out of Chapter 11 until it declared Chapter 7 bankruptcy in January 2010.

Entries by Mark Green

SOTU's Optimism, Populism, Patriotism

(0) Comments | Posted January 25, 2015 | 7:44 PM



By Mark Green

After Obama's popular SOTU agenda to "I won twice," Matalin and Corn debate if he will shape the next two years or 10 with his framework of An Economy for All. Sure looks like he has...

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2015 Starts with a Bang - 114th Keystone Cops or Pipeline? Deja Bush? More Terrorism?

(0) Comments | Posted January 12, 2015 | 11:11 AM



By Mark Green

The contours of the next year or two are already taking shape: with McConnell claiming credit for soaring economy yet Graham blaming Obama for Charlie Hebdo, JAlter and RChristie discuss if this will this be Post...

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Remember the "Trio of Scandals?" Don't. An Open Letter to Williams, Sawyer, Pelley

(9) Comments | Posted June 27, 2013 | 11:32 PM

The plan was ingenious - conflate the words "scandal" and "Obama." Use it to win in 2014, maybe even 2016. But especially after a week of real news, the IRS, Benghazi, and AP "scandals" now look like the inside of Al Capone's safe. Two questions: What will Fox do? (We...

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Dear Mr. President: An Inaugural Theme -- MoneyOut/VotersIn

(1) Comments | Posted January 19, 2013 | 10:06 AM

I know, it's late. But you often play with a speech the night before or enroute -- so how about your last Inaugural? Because it requires a thematic spine that endures, may I suggest one that emerges out of your books, talks, presidency: MoneyOut/VotersIn. Until we have a democracy-for-all, your...

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Who Will Fox Blame When Obama Wins? Awk-ward!

(441) Comments | Posted November 4, 2012 | 1:05 AM

For four years Fox has caricatured "the anointed one" as a a teleprompted, golf-loving, incompetent alien with no record or integrity... so how will they explain Obama's victory to incredulous viewers? Watch them finger three culprits -- viz., Luck, Sandy and The Media.

Here's the truth: The country faces a...

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How Democrats Can Get Back on Offense

(4) Comments | Posted September 4, 2012 | 9:47 AM

With GOP policy, language and funding in the grip of far-right regressives -- and its national ticket too -- now is the time for Congressional Democrats to sharpen differences to win and govern. Here's our Open Letter to 10 Congressional Leaders signed by 20 leading Democrats.

Robert Frost once...

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McCain Can't Handle the Truth: "Bin Laden" IS Answer to "Appeaser"

(38) Comments | Posted April 30, 2012 | 5:51 PM

For decades, from McCarthy through McCain to Romney, the GOP has slandered Democrats as unAmerican, weak on defense, or, as Dick Cheney said in 2004, if Kerry won "we'd get hit again." Maintaining that tradition, Mitt Romney last year repeatedly called President Obama "an "appeaser" --...

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Can Occupy Overturn Citizens United? "Dear 99%ers..."

(62) Comments | Posted December 14, 2011 | 9:09 AM

Nothing could enhance American democracy more than if Occupy Wall Street helped enact the 28th Constitutional Amendment to end the pretense that corporations are people who speak with money. The 99% can stop the privatization of government.

There's an important conversation going on about the goals of Occupy Wall Street...

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Jewish Leaders Denounce Kristol Anti-Semitism Charge

(2) Comments | Posted November 1, 2011 | 3:05 PM

A Statement Against Smears

We are publicly engaged American Jews who support both Israel and the ideas behind Occupy Wall Street and who also strongly oppose right-wing attempts to smear that movement with false charges of anti-Semitism.

It's an old, discredited tactic: find a couple of unrepresentative people in a...

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The Right-Wing Smears OWS With Anti-Semitism

(60) Comments | Posted October 25, 2011 | 12:37 PM

I'm a Jewish supporter of Israel and Occupy Wall Street. Not big news, you'd think. But the right-wing noise machine needs some way to undermine this threat to the power and wealth of the 1%. So it's hit on "anti-Semitism." Oy!

When something called The Emergency Committee for Israel aired...

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The 9/11 Election: A Personal Reflection

(2) Comments | Posted September 7, 2011 | 11:40 AM

"Looks like I'll be running for mayor."

It's September 24, 1999, and I'm sitting in my living room overlooking the East River at 90th Street, breaking some news gently to my wife. "But what if you lose?" asks Deni, wary of my irrational confidence that critics call arrogance. "How...

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"JOBS FIRST" -- Starting 'Labor' Day, Obama Can Turn Tables on GOP

(52) Comments | Posted August 5, 2011 | 3:34 PM

After the GOP put Obama into a lose-lose proposition on the debt ceiling, there's a jobs jujitsu opportunity -- post-bus tour and on the day dedicated to American workers, Obama can propose investing $300 billion now in a growth agenda in exchange for reducing the deficit through tax reform by...

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How the GOP Will Re-elect Obama in 2012

(160) Comments | Posted April 24, 2011 | 9:40 PM

Imagine a national politician who's vocally pro-EPA, pro-OSHA, pro-affirmative action and for expanding national health care. Obviously, he'd be a Democrat. He would also be Richard Nixon in 1970. The GOP presidential nominee won't be able to survive the taint of wingers competing for headlines.

As the Tea-Party GOP loudly...

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Rudy vs. The Donald: A Gotham Tale-of-the-Tape

(2) Comments | Posted January 31, 2011 | 10:09 AM

As the Republican presidential primary season gets underway, two big-name Republican brands and NYC icons have been suggesting that they might run.

Rudy vs. The Donald would be a tabloid dream. How real is the prospect? Giuliani told CNN's Piers Morgan and CNBC's Larry Kudlow that he...

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Reality Bites: The GOP Majority Hits the Ground... Stumbling

(176) Comments | Posted January 25, 2011 | 9:31 AM

It's only been three weeks but House Republicans are already losing momentum on health care, deficits, civility, guns, and Issa's investigations. Was Nov. 2 their high point?

Republicans certainly earned bragging rights when they captured 53% of the national vote and netted 63 seats in the House in the mid-term...

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Her Candidacy Is Over -- Palin's "Brainwashing" and "Joe Welch" Moment

(1453) Comments | Posted January 13, 2011 | 12:27 AM

After the President's remarks in Tucson, ideally the public conversation will be elevated to focus more on serious issues after the tragedy last Saturday -- how can we help the mentally ill before they hurt themselves or us? How can we craft gun control laws to keep semi-automatics away from...

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Stemming the Tide of Secret Corporate Money

(15) Comments | Posted October 28, 2010 | 12:41 AM

Until now the dominant narrative this mid-term election year was that slow growth and high unemployment were sinking the party in power. But other numbers are now showing a new fault-line for 2010, 2012 and beyond. Outside special interest spending will equal or exceed spending by candidates themselves or party...

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Juan Williams Should Have Been Given a Choice -- NPR or Fox

(79) Comments | Posted October 25, 2010 | 1:38 PM

As Juan Williams and the far right decry "censorship" and attempt to elevate his firing a campaign issue, the public should remember several key contexts:

*First, it did seem abrupt and unfair that he was canned within a day after a decade of service, although presumably this was not the...

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'Mosque' Debate Ending -- Will Rudy Join Rauf?

(94) Comments | Posted October 19, 2010 | 9:57 AM

Dear Rudy,

While we've often been on opposite sides, I hope that you'll now publicly agree that the Islamic Cultural Center downtown should be built. Although that debate is ending, a larger one on Muslim and minority rights in America -- witness rising protests around the country...

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The "Mad" Party -- When the Base Goes Beserk

(92) Comments | Posted September 22, 2010 | 4:03 PM

I don't blame Christine O'Donnell, Carl Paladino, Sharron Angle, Joe Miller, Rand Paul, Ken Buck and others in the Far (F)right. I blame the voters -- at least Republican primary voters. As Mel Brooks said in the guise of Louis IV in The History of the World, "the people are...

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