February 17, 2015
collegeamerica2

Colorado Sues CollegeAmerica for Systematic Deception

A state court in Denver has just unsealed the complaint that the Colorado attorney general brought late last year against CollegeAmerica / Stevens-Henager, a former for-profit college network that recently converted to non-profit status. The school’s conversion seems to enrich its founder in ways that disturbingly distort the concept of a non-profit, but its apparent abuses of students are even more troubling.

Last year the U.S. Justice Department joined an employee whistleblower lawsuit charging that College America / Stevens-Henager schools paid their recruiters bonuses, commissions, and other forms of incentive compensation in violation of the federal ban on such …

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February 13, 2015
everest

Misleading Assurances in the Corinthian-ECMC Deal

Student loan debt collection company ECMC has just begun its takeover of 56 campuses of the failed, predatory for-profit Corinthian Colleges. But already, assurances from both federal government officials and ECMC itself regarding protections for students in the deal appear to have been highly misleading. A brand-new Everest College enrollment agreement, seen by Republic Report, combined with other information, suggests that the deal is worse for students than has been promised.

A striking example is a provision of this new enrollment agreement document, which is presented under the header “Everest College, An affiliate of Zenith Education Group, Inc.” Zenith is the new non-profit …

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January 23, 2015
edmc_hp

Inside the ECMC-Corinthian Deal: Will Students Be Protected?

The U.S. Department of Education’s ill-advised effort to broker the sale of 56 campuses of the discredited Corinthian for-profit college chain to ECMC, a student debt collection operation, has hit some snags. The transfer of campuses to ECMC has been delayed nearly a month, to February 2, in part because various state regulators need to give approval, and even then there will be campuses not ready to be shifted until some unspecified later time. But new information obtained by Republic Report suggests once again how challenging it would be to successfully run Corinthian for any new management, and particularly ECMC, which …

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January 21, 2015
drevna

Refinery Lobbyist Invokes WW2-Era Quote, Calls Businesses That Donate to Environmentalists ‘Appeasers’

Charles Drevna, the top lobbyist for the refinery industry in America, likened fossil fuel companies that work with and fund environmental groups to “appeasers.” Paraphrasing Winston Churchill, Drevna said “an appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile hoping he’ll eat him last, and that’s what’s happening,” referencing a donation from gas company to the Sierra Club.

Drevna was speaking to reporters after his remarks at the National Press Club.

“The environmental goal is to knock out coal … knock out fossil fuels,” said Drevna, who scorned Chesapeake Energy chief executive Aubrey McClendon for reportedly donating tens of millions of dollars to …

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January 20, 2015
npr-1

NPR Reporter on Featuring Climate Change Denier Front Groups: ‘Journalists Just Love a Fight’

Merchants of Doubt, a new film by Robert Kenner, explores the history of paid “third party” front groups, designed to appear as legitimate scientific or academic organizations, that act to mislead the public on policy issues on behalf of their corporate benefactors. The film goes through the history of groups that were paid to raise doubts about the health risks of cigarette smoking on behalf of tobacco firms to the modern climate change denial network spawned by fossil fuel interests.

At a special screening of the movie in Washington, D.C., NPR’s science correspondent Geoff Brumfiel and Kenner participated in a …

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January 20, 2015
ryanlance

ConocoPhillips CEO Stalks Capitol Hill as Lawmakers Consider Keystone XL

Ryan Lance, the chief executive office of ConocoPhillips, was walking the hall of Congress as lawmakers debated the Keystone XL, a key priority for the company, which owns a significant stake in Canadian tar sands. TransCanada has disclosed that ConocoPhillips is slated to ship tar sands oil using the Keystone XL pipeline.

“Ryan’s as comfortable on an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico or in Malaysia as he is walking the halls of Congress, as he’s been doing over the last couple of days,” noted former Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Armitage, speaking at an event with Lance at the Center …

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January 16, 2015
charleskoch

Americans for Prosperity Announces Legislative Agenda, Mirrors Koch Industries’ Corporate Wishlist

Americans for Prosperity, the grassroots organizing group founded by billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch, spent $125 million in the midterm elections last year. Now, they’re calling in their chips.

At the National Press Club yesterday, AFP president Tim Phillips and several officers with the group laid out their agenda. The group is calling for legalizing crude oil exports, a repeal of the estate tax, approval of the Keystone XL pipeline, blocking any hike in the gas tax, a tax holiday on corporate profits earned overseas, blocking the EPA’s new rules on carbon emissions …

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January 14, 2015
quadIHE

For-Profit College Investor Now Owns Controlling Share of Leading Education Trade Publication

Quad Partners, a New York private equity firm that is invested heavily in the for-profit college industry, and whose founder has aggressively opposed regulation of that troubled industry, has acquired a controlling stake in the respected trade publication Inside Higher Ed (IHE), which often reports on for-profit colleges and the policy disputes surrounding them. There has been no public announcement, but the Quad Partners website now lists Inside Higher Ed as one of its investments, among a range of education-related companies, including for-profit trade schools Beckfield College, Blue Cliff College, Dorsey Schools, Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, and Marinello Schools of Beauty.

Doug Lederman, one …

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