Are Biofuels Really Good for the Environment?

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Green Energy

Yet another international organization is warning that the rush to biofuels may do the environment more harm that good. The Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, of which the U.S. is a member, has a new report that says biofuels may, "offer a cure that is worse than the disease they seek to heal."

The biofuel industry is enjoying large subsidies: about $7 billion-a-year from the U.S. government. But this latest report says "the current push to expand the use of biofuels is creating unsustainable tensions that will disrupt markets without generating significant environmental benefits."

Jobs Service

A Pennsylvania charity supported by Democratic Congressman John Murtha that purports to help find jobs for disabled people, reportedly has had very little success and mainly does business with people and companies tied to Murtha.

Roll Call newspaper reports, the Pennsylvania Association for Individuals with Disabilities bills itself as representing 60 million people, but has actually helped only 237 get permanent jobs. The paper says Murtha has helped fund it through congressional earmarks and that the organization works primarily with other companies Murtha has financed.

Now former Georgia Democratic Senator Max Cleland has withdrawn from the group's board of directors after just one month. Cleland is himself disabled and has been a strong advocate for people with disabilities.

Costly Verdict

Two former Detroit police officers have been awarded $6.5 million dollars in a whistleblower lawsuit that produced allegations of corruption and infidelity by Democratic Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and his staff.

One of the officers was fired after looking into criminal allegations against members of the mayor's security unit. The other was transferred out of the unit after being identified as a whistleblower. He also described escorting the married mayor to trysts with several women.

The jury found that Mayor Kilpatrick and the city had violated the state's Whistleblower Protection Act.

Code of Silence

School officials in Queens, New York are under fire after a policy that prohibited 911 calls for any reason led to tragic results for a student.

The New York Daily News reports a 14-year-old girl who suffered a stroke went an hour-and-a-half without medical attention because of the policy at Jamaica High School. Her parents say the girl now has trouble walking, cannot use her right hand and cannot read properly.

The girl's lawyer says schools don't want 911 calls made because they reflect poorly on safety records. But the school's "no-call" policy runs directly against the school district policy that specifically instructs officials to call 911 in emergencies. That directive came after an 11-year-old boy died during an asthma attack at a Brooklyn public school, while nurses allegedly were prohibited from calling 911.

—FOX News Channel's Martin Hill contributed to this report.