Grassroots Reformers Announce Urgent Measure Following "Global Corruption Barometer 2009"

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The grassroots good government and legal reform advocate known as POPULAR, Inc. announces the 2009 midyear recipients of its "Restore Integrity Award". Co-administrators of the award program conclude it is an "urgent measure given results and implications of the Global Corruption Barometer 2009 of Transparency International, a prestigious anti-corruption coalition."

POPULAR seeks out and honors those worthy of the Restore Integrity Award, our sometimes silent heroes who break down proverbial walls of silence and light the way for others, and who serve to inspire, encourage, and help others join to restore integrity.

The grassroots good government and legal reform advocate known as POPULAR, Inc. (POPULAR) announces the 2009 midyear recipients of its "Restore Integrity Award". The award program is co-administered by POPULAR's Advisory Board President Katherine Moore and Advisory Board Vice President Nancy Swan. They explain that the group's "Restore Integrity Award" is awarded bi-annually in the categories of public sector, private sector, and grassroots advocacy.

According to Advisory Board President Moore, "all of POPULAR's award recipients have taken or otherwise pursued one or more specific acts or measures to eliminate significant inequity, waste, fraud, abuse, or other public and/or private sector corruption in America." Advisory Board Vice President Swan conveys that "POPULAR defines corruption as any illegal or unethical conduct contributing to the systemic malfunction of government, commerce, and/or democracy in America as contemplated by the U.S. Constitution." Moore and Swan note that POPULAR's "Restore Integrity Award" is an urgent measure given results and implications of the "Global Corruption Barometer 2009" of Transparency International (TI), a prestigious anti-corruption coalition.

TI indicates that overall perception of corruption has increased 8 percent worldwide. The group's Global Corruption Barometer 2009 reports a stunning 61% of surveyed Americans and Canadians believing "in their county the private sector used bribery to influence government policies, laws, and regulations." TI's 2009 barometer indicates "there needs to be greater effort made to ensure that the general public has access to and believes in the effectiveness of formal reporting mechanisms."

POPULAR's Moore and Swan believe their group's first round of award recipients deserve recognition for their efforts to expose and combat corruption, poverty, unethical behavior in public and private institutions, and to provide relief as well as evoke helpful reform. Moore adds "these individuals have exhibited courage and bravery without any regard to personal gain and we laud them for ideals that are consistent with POPULAR's goals." Swan interjects that "POPULAR seeks out and honors those worthy of the Restore Integrity Award, our sometimes silent heroes who break down proverbial walls of silence and light the way for others, and who serve to inspire, encourage, and help others join to restore integrity."

POPULAR's 2009 midyear "Restore Integrity Award" recipients are as follows:

Public Sector Category:

  • Senator Richard (Dick) Durbin (D-IL) for declaring that banks which enabled America's current financial crisis, remain the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. and "frankly own the place" as his colleagues in the U.S. Senate vote down his proposed amendment to a bill that would have allowed bankruptcy judges to help desperate homeowners renegotiate their mortgage payments.
  • Senator James (Jim) Henry Webb, Jr. (D-Va) for introducing "The National Criminal Justice Act of 2009" calling for a national commission to "undertake a top-to-bottom review of (America's) entire criminal justice system" and offer recommendations for reform.

Private Sector Category:

  • Dr. Richard I. Fine for being the first attorney to expose the illegality and inherent conflicts of interests spawned by the now notorious, "double benefits" payments from Los Angeles County, California to the state's superior court judges, all to Fine's professional and personal detriment as he was subsequently disbarred and jailed indefinitely on contempt of court charges.

Grassroots Advocacy Category:

  • Ms. Marcel Reid and Ms. Karen Inman, co-recipients, for spearheading the grassroots fight for truth, transparency, and accountability within ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now), a purported advocate for low and moderate income people. Reid and Inman began their fight to reform ACORN while serving on its now defunct, Interim Management Committee and are among the co-founders of ACORN 8, "the people's movement to reform ACORN."
  • Mr. William (Bill) Stegmeier for financially underwriting America's highest profile though failed ballot initiative to accomplish substantial citizen oversight of alleged judicial misconduct known as the South Dakota J.A.I.L. (Judicial Accountability Initiative Law) Initiative or Amendment E.

POPULAR will mail all of its 2009 midyear "Restore Integrity Award" recipients an encased certificate, commemorating their award. They were personally notified of and congratulated for receiving the award prior to this public announcement. POPULAR will announce its second round of award recipients in December 2009.

POPULAR is an acronym for "Power Over Poverty Under Laws of America Restored". The nonprofit corporation is essentially an association of public interest attorneys and Juris Doctors, advised by a board of nonlawyer, community leaders. These good government advocates are committed to helping poor and other disadvantaged people access affordable and competent legal representation, appropriate judicial oversight, and important civil and criminal justice system reforms. See: http://www.popular4people.org

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POPULAR, Inc.
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