The Connecticut Mirror, a newly launched non-profit online newspaper covering Connecticut, is off to an intriguing start with an article reporting on the outside income of some members of the Connecticut General Assembly. One Republican lawmaker "who has led the charge for legalizing medical marijuana in Connecticut," the Mirror reports, "was paid $113,000 over three years" by the Marijuana Policy Project, a non-profit group that favors legalizing the herb. Three Democratic lawmakers are empoyees of the state's public employee unions. A co-chair of the state Senate appropriations committee was paid as an employee of a non-profit that received $387,000 in state funds. Conflicts of interest are part of the world we all live in, and there may be cases to be made on the merits for medical marijuana or funding the non-profit that employs the co-chair of the appropriations committee. The high priests of "ethics" are sometimes more concerned with the appearance of impropriety than about whether there's been any actual impropriety. And the outside income makes it possible for Connecticut taxpayers to save money by paying lawmakers less than what is earned by full-time counterparts in other states. With all that said, it's an eye-opening dispatch from a newcomer to the Connecticut news scene.