Execution can be fun!

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For the first time in years, proponents and opponents of the death penalty have something in common to rally against: a new toy doll strapped to an old-fashioned electric chair that shouts, “That’s the best you can do, you pansies?”

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So far 65,000 of the Death Row Marv dolls have been sold nationwide since the toys debut in June, according to APBNEWS.COM.

Though activists on both sides of the issue call the doll offensive, the manufacturer is happy to be raking in the profits. One store owner even credits George W. Bush’s recent barrage of executions as good promotion.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

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It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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