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Orange Politics

Blue NC received a nice plug from my next-favorite blog, Orange Politics. If you haven't checked it out, get on over there. It's the best inside scoop on North Carolina's most progressive county you'll find.

Hats off to N&O . . . NOT

I've been a harsh critic of the News and Observer's editoral pages for years. Under Steve Ford's leadership, the pages have taken on a wishy-washy character that is unbecoming of a major regional paper.

So I was surprised this morning to see that Mr. Ford actually took a stand on something important to our nation. He endorsed Samuel ScAlito to join the US Supreme Court. (It's ironic that the New York Times, a source of much of the N&O's news content, chose today to call for a filibuster against the nominee.)

So hats off to Mr. Ford. It takes a lot of backbone to speak the courage of your convictions.

N&O + Martinez = Mouthpiece for the John Locke Foundation

I don't expect much from the N&O any more . . . but I do expect them not to be whores for the John Locke Foundation.

Take a look at Ricky Martinez' latest column below, and compare it to the press materials recently issued by Johnny Be Hood of the Pope-a-Dope Center for Whatever. Truly disgusting.

First the press release.

RALEIGH – Smaller class sizes do not translate into better public-school performance. That’s the key finding in a new analysis from the John Locke Foundation.

The idea behind the state’s $23 million class-size reduction program was that smaller classes would help students by giving them more access to individualized instruction. But after four years, there is no statistical evidence that the program works.

New Motto for the Old North State?

First in Impeachment

There's a fascinating discussion unfolding here that suggests the possibility of moving forward with presidential impeachment with one STATE taking the initiative. That's right. One STATE.

Here's a snippet from this provocative DailyKos diary:

A high crime is one which seeks the overthrow of the country, which gives aid or comfort to its enemies, or which injures the country to the profit of an individual or group.

On December 10, 1903 William B. Lamar, US Congressional Representative for the 3rd district of Florida, rose on the floor of the house and delivered before Congress articles of impeachment, prepared and resolved by both houses of the legislature of Florida, alleging high crimes and misdemeanors by a Federal Judge, Charles Swayne.

The "good roads state"

When I think about all the things I expect from North Carolina, "the good roads state" doesn't jump to the top of my list of priorities. But along with forever bragging about our accidental claim to First in Flight, we sure seem to have a hang up about spending on highway construction.

There was probably a time when visionary thinkers could make the case that a network of world-class roads would be key to a sustainable future . . . like 90 years ago or so, when we pioneered the practice of making untold public investments into a miraculous network of highways . . . ready and waiting for Peak Oil.

Can you say 'wishy-washy?'

For those of you living outside the Triangle, I sure hope you have a better newspaper than N&O . . . especially if you expect editorial boards to have clear opinions that are well-articulated. Because here in Raleighwood, Steve Ford and the N&O have given new meaning to the term 'wishy-washy.'

In today's useless editorial, the N&O can't quite bring itself to have an opinion about Bush's gross abuse of power in wiretapping American citizens.

Stirring criticism is the fact that the eavesdropping has taken place without warrants issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, set up to handle such cases in secret. Since 2002, the NSA reportedly has monitored the international phone calls, faxes and e-mails of around 500 U.S. citizens or residents without seeking the warrants. That's curious, both because requests for warrants can be made for 72 hours after the monitoring has occurred and because the court rarely denies a request.

Sad Sue's Sorry Site

I haven't paid much attention to the shenanigans of Ms. Myrick and her allegiance to Dear Leader, but a number of pundits have put her gubernatorial ambitions on the table, so she is now squarely in my sights. And after a brief stroll through her creepy website all I can say is what the f*ck is going on in Charlotte? Is this really the best you can do?


Your lottery stinks

The N&O has a way of getting all activated when things happen in secret . . . like this latest creepy decision move by Powersleaze . . . the NC Lottery Commission.

Lottery officials have decided to keep secret the bids received last week for two multimillion-dollar contracts, until those contracts have been awarded. That is an outrageous and unacceptable repudiation of Sanders' promises.

Making the bids public, officials say, would mean the companies would find out about each others' bids and thus the state's bargaining power would be reduced. But that's a thin excuse (so is the assurance that information will be released once deals are done), and lottery officials should know better. Likewise, they should be embarrassed to be hiding behind legal technicalities, given what's gone on in terms of setting up the lottery.

Hood winked again

Da Carolina Journal is all over lobbying reform this week . . . opining about the differences between persuasion and influence-peddling . . . insisting that corporations have the same rights as citizens here in free-speech land.

Note to Hood: Corporations have NO rights except for those that we the people give them. You might want to check out your Cato Constitution just to be sure.

Out of frustration, I'm open to lobbying reform, as Johnnie seems to be. But I'm not very optimistic that the foxes are the best ones to write new rules for how to guard the hen house. Especially when one of the fox cheerleaders writes crap like this:

Andromeda strained

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I had a scary dream last night. The world was being taken over by Corrupt Republicans -- just like the Andromeda strain, a destructive indiscriminate virus, multiplying recklessly throughout the land.

First they destroy their host . . . the civilized world in which we live . . . on their happy way to destroying themselves in pursuit of the end times. It is an attempted smackdown of the grandest proportions.

The only antiviral vaccine I see is 'truth,' which is getting harder and harder to find. Hey GlaxoSmithKline . . . how about pouring some of those profits into R&D for a drug that will stop compulsive lying. And be sure to enter George Bush in your first round of human trials. On second thought, put him in with the rats. (Sorry, rats.)

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