Hood the Contortionist

It's a slow news day. More lying from the Bush White House about who knew what and when. More stupidity and deception from Dick Cheney. More cover up. More corruption. Just business as usual by I-hate-government Republicans.

So it's flat out funny as shit to watch John Hood grimace and grunt as he tries to call Bush to account for his abject failure in all things fiscal. If he keeps this up, he could get a job as a contortionists in Cirque de Soleil. In any case, here's Hood's humor of the day. He can't bring himself to criticize dear leader without taking gratuitous potshots at Al Gore, Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter.

You can't make this up . . .

How could this be? Cheating and cover-up going on at our squeaky clean lottery? The N&O covers the story.

With a bit of drama Tuesday, lottery chief Tom Shaheen whipped away a towel and revealed a new logo for the state's $1 billion-a-year lottery.

:: snip ::

The commission had just agreed to hire a full-service ad agency for the lottery, but Shaheen said his staff designed the logo. He liked it.

His staff said it depicted an exciting explosion of fireworks against what might be a blue sky.

But by the end of the day, the lottery had scrapped the logo, and officials wouldn't release any image of it, despite protests by lawyers for The News & Observer that it is a public record under state law.

Cherokee Nat. Forest On the Chopping Block

More on Bush's plan to sell National Forests to fund education (would this even be necessary if he'd planned to provide schools with the funds for NCLB?): 3,000 acres of Cherokee National Forest, just over the border in Tennessee, are on the "Every Acre Must Go!" list. NC's national forests are on the potential sale list, but they haven't been made part of a particular proposal yet. Our National Forest closest to Cherokee is Nantahala.

Have you contacted your representative yet? The message is "Not For Sale!" The photo of a Occoee River sunrise below is used with the permission of the photographer, Jessica (and you can click the picture to see it on Flickr and leave a comment for the photographer).

Hood winked

Carolina Journal is in rare form today. First they lead with a story that feeds their homophobic agenda about a gay teacher being investigated for contaminating young minds. Heaven forbid kids in schools should understand anything about homosexuality.

And then this gem from Mr. Hood, whining about "theocratic tyrants." Of course, he's all in favor of our own White House Tyrant in Chief . . . it's just those brown people in the Middle East he has a problem with.

The biggest outrage of all is theocratic tyrants with much innocent blood on their hands lecturing the Danes about anything.

Where does the money go?

I've been looking through the state's Education budget.

Does anyone know anything about:
God's Vision Ministries, Inc., P.O. Box 428, Louisburg, NC, 27549

No? Well your taxes are paying them $18,000 for something to do with education. I couldn't even find a link online.

Likewise, $25,000 to the Durham Nativity School, which sounds like a great idea, but is also a religious institute.
The Judy Memorial Family Center is also without a website, but they get $10,000. WNC Communities gets $50,000, nearly all of which could be accounted for by "awards" they give to other organizations like BIG COVE with the Eastern Band of the Cherokee, BIG IVY in Buncombe County, CENTER in Madison County, and REVERE - RICE COVE in Madison County. What these groups have to do with education is not immediately apparent.

Local Sheriff Race and Republican Infighting

Watuaga Watch has it all here:

There's no more popular Republican office-holder in Watauga County than Sheriff Mark Shook. He's received nationwide attention for cleaning up an epidemic of meth labs. He's young and graced with all the benefits and some of the problems of youth.

So naturally the local Republican Party power-structure wants to destroy him. Led by ex-Sheriff Red Lyons, the party has recruited Joe Moody to bring down Shook in a primary. In a profile article in today's

Not for the birds

You've no doubt heard that Navy will be flying jets at night this week over a proposed site for a practice training field in northeast North Carolina. The N&O has done a good job covering this long-running story and has an update today.

The Super Hornets will be crossing a tract in Washington and Beaufort counties to collect data on noise and waterfowl in the area. The results will be used in an environmental impact study to be completed in August.

:: snip ::

In December, some daytime flights in nearby Hyde County were canceled due to the risk of striking birds.

Taylor = Delay


Cobey thinks Taylor's seat is safe? Not if we have anything to say about it.

Check Taylor out. The guy looks like a crook, acts like a crook . . . and probably even smells like a crook . . . with a miserable record of shady dealings that everybody seems to know about except the good people of his district. Maybe this poster will help spread the word. PDF attached.

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