Posmo's blog

What's up at DPS?

The #2 person at the NC Department of Public Safety, W. Ellis Boyle, abruptly resigned.

W. Ellis Boyle, the No. 2 at the state Department of Public Safety, resigned after weeks of talks with agency Secretary Frank Perry.

In a letter to Perry released Friday, Boyle did not give a reason for what prompted his departure, except to say he was “resigning to pursue other professional opportunities.”

Boyle served as the deputy secretary and general counsel. His resignation is effective Monday, the letter states.

People are pissed at Duke Energy & Pollution

Art Pope's constellation.

The John Locke Foundation, based in Raleigh, is part of conservative businessman and state budget director Art Pope's constellation of free-market, anti-government groups. Its critique of Duke Energy was more muted—but no longer.

We'll get to the main story in a moment, but first we have to relish Bob Geary's turn of a phrase: "Art Pope's constellation of free-market, anti-government groups". We appreciate good writing, and Geary is a consistent source of it. This particular phrase is, in our estimation, just about perfect. Well done Bob!

And now what Bob's getting at:

What could possibly be wrong with one company supplying the electricity to 95 percent of our state? One company that is both public utility and shareholder-owned: Captive customers pay the bills and the company makes all the campaign contributions it wants.

Senate seat for sale

When the supply of desirable items is limited, demand soars. With only a few US Senate seats available for purchase this year, outsiders are dumping truckloads of money into North Carolina. So far, the highest bidders are the Koch brothers.

[Karl Rove's $1.1 million pro-Tillis] American Crossroads ad follows $8.3 million spent on six ads against Hagan and the health care law, which she supported, by Americans for Prosperity, a group backed by billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch. Koch Industries has headquarters in Kansas.

It's old news that Karl Rove and the Koch brothers have already launched an all-out attack on Kay Hagan in the form of television ads. But the amounts are staggering:

Koch Zero

As the Wall Street Journal reports, Democrats are beginning to shine some light on the Koch brothers dark world. That includes the Koch tentacles that reach into our state:

In North Carolina, Democrats think they have found a way to counter the Kochs at a chemical factory the company owns along the Cape Fear River, where, right before the holidays last year, 100 workers learned they would lose their jobs. Senator Kay Hagan, Democrat of North Carolina, who has been the target of millions of dollars in negative ads from Americans for Prosperity, said the job cuts were a cruel slap to her state, especially since they came right as the group started to spend significant sums attacking her.

Decker wants business recruiters to act unethically

After successfully forming an unaccountable arm of government in one of their first privatization schemes, Deputy Assistant Guvnor Pat and Commerce Secretary Duker how want to exempt that private entity from state ethics rules.

Draft legislation reworking the rules for a new private nonprofit designed to recruit businesses to North Carolina would make the corporation's employees subject to state ethics, personnel and travel polices – prompting objections from Commerce Department leaders.

"The objective here is nimbleness, speed of movement, the ability to take action and to market the state effectively," said Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker. "I'm looking at all of the legislation with that lens. So, I've got concerns about legislation that might be preventive."

Thom Tillis sinks deeper in to pay to play ooze

First he shook down the payday lenders and gave them what they wanted.

Then he skipped out of the legislative session he's supposed to lead to rake in campaign cash in Washington DC.

Now Thom Tillis continues his extortion fundraising by shaking down other parties who want Thom to get legislation passed that favors their interests.

The second largest contributor to his campaign is EUE/Screen Gems, a movie studio company in Wilmington with credits that include “Iron Man 3”, HBO’s “Eastbound & Down” and CBS’ “Under the Dome.”

He's definitely not the education governor

A new poll shows that about half of registered voters disapprove of Deputy Assistant Guvnor McCrory's job performance, but 78% people who rank education as their top issue disapprove of ol' Pat.

Gov. Pat McCrory’s approval rating among registered voters stands at 39 percent in North Carolina, while about half – 49 percent – disapprove, according to a new poll.

One interesting number from the cross-tabs: Among likely voters who identify education as their top issue in the U.S. Senate race this year, McCrory’s approval is 16 percent and his disapproval is 78 percent.

Yeah, just like the dentists in the toothpaste commercial, 4 out of 5 education-minded voters disapprove of Pat's job performance.

Carl Ford seeks to quash due process for school boards

Crazy Carl Ford, who brought you the infamous "establish state religion" bill, now plans to file a bill to prevent local school boards from being able to sue county commissions.

N.C. Rep. Carl Ford, R-Rowan, said he and other lawmakers are crafting a statewide bill aimed at cutting school districts’ ability to pursue litigation against the county’s elected officials.

That's right, Carl doesn't like the idea of people exercising their legal rights. Without a last-resort alternative to bring a lawsuit, school boards won't have any influence and county commissions will act with impunity.

Alarming voter fraud

The NC GOP lie machine is being spun up to full speed, based on the Tillisberger's report of "Alarming Evidence of Voter Error and Fraud".

We could comment on many things, such as:

  • Wow! Those are some really big numbers! Oh, wait, they reflect only a very tiny fraction of votes cast;
  • This is some VERY carefully spun data intentionally designed to be very misleading and alarm low-information consumers of the information;
  • This data probably represents what's been happening for a long time, and nearly all of it is likely to be easily explainable and innocuous; and
  • They offer no evidence that any of this would have been prevented by their voter suppression law.

RJR is dark-money McCrory backer

(Tip o' the hat to Rep. Pricey Harrison for tweeting this)

Facing South reports a Smoking Gun: Tobacco giant reveals funding of NC dark money group backing McCrory

As a so-called "dark money" group, the Renew North Carolina Foundation -- a political nonprofit launched in 2012 to support the agenda of Republican Gov. Pat McCrory -- doesn't have to disclose its donors.

However, because a corporate backer of Renew NC is one of a growing number of companies that have agreed to be more transparent about their political spending, at least one donor to the pro-McCrory outfit has been brought to light: tobacco giant Reynolds American, Inc.

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