Wednesday News: Raleigh runoffs?

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INCUMBENTS CROWDER AND STEPHENSON TRAILING IN VOTES TO NEWCOMERS: Council members David Cox, Nicole Stewart and Corey Branch all won their races with more than 50% plus one of the votes cast, successfully avoiding a November run-off election. And newcomers Patrick Buffkin and David Knight will also be joining the board. That may not be the case for incumbents Russ Stephenson and Kay Crowder. The longtime council members trailed Jonathan Melton and Saige Martin, respectively, after all of Tuesday’s votes were counted, though neither of the challengers crossed the 50% threshold and Stephenson, at least, suggested that he would ask for a runoff. The power on the council shifted two years ago. The majority call themselves proponents of smart-growth, while critics say they are slow- or anti-growth. Only one in the current majority — Cox — won outright Tuesday.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/election/article235853772.html

Tuesday News: Investigate the parents

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WAKE HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS TAKE WHITE SUPREMACY TO SNAPCHAT: School administrators are investigating whether to punish students at two schools outside Raleigh, North Carolina, for exchanging racist messages online. Wake County Schools spokeswoman Lisa Luten said Monday the Snapchat discussions involved three students at East Wake High School in Wendell, and a larger number of students in nearby Johnston County, which Johnston schools' spokesman Nathanael Shelton confirmed. Both districts are investigating. WTVD reports the group chat was exposed by a 14-year-old black girl at East Wake, who posed with a white-face avatar to confirm what she'd heard about. The messages included "Pullin triggers and shootin n------"and "#bring slavery back." The girl's parents told WTVD that her principal told them there was little to be done because the threats weren't "specific" or "imminent."
https://www.wral.com/north-carolina-students-investigated-in-racist-online-chat/18683049/

Tuesday Twitter roundup

Today is the big day for some municipalities:

If you haven't already voted, make sure you do so today. If you live in a municipality that is having its election in November (like me), early voting is just around the corner.

Pope Foundation a core element of Climate Change denialism network

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A network that is coordinated and very well-funded:

According to Brulle's research, the 91 think tanks and advocacy organizations and trade associations that make up the American climate denial industry pull down just shy of a billion dollars each year, money used to lobby or sway public opinion on climate change and other issues.

“The anti-climate effort has been largely underwritten by conservative billionaires,” says the Guardian, “often working through secretive funding networks. They have displaced corporations as the prime supporters of 91 think tanks, advocacy groups and industry associations which have worked to block action on climate change.”

We've talked a lot here at BlueNC about the propaganda written by Civitas and JLF, and the amount of direct influence Art Pope has exerted on Republican lawmakers here. But those things are visible and often "in-your-face." The function of the Pope Foundation as part of a much broader scheme to undermine science is not so easily detected, unless you use science to detect the anti-science:

Monday News: Stalking by proxy

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GREG LINDBERG HAD WOMEN HE WAS ATTRACTED TO FOLLOWED: The article, based on months of reporting, interviews with some of the women involved, interviews with security personnel and a review of internal reports and messages they provided, details Durham insurance magnate Greg Lindberg's approach to dating and to identifying potential egg donors to help him have a baby. The newspaper said Lindberg scoured social media, often keying on aspiring models, then had a surveillance team research each woman's habits and whether or not she had a boyfriend. At one point, they staked out a "Sports Illustrated" swimsuit model's apartment, The Journal said. Lindberg's team used GPS trackers and reported back if the women saw other men, the newspaper said. One investigator enrolled in a culinary school to keep watch, The Journal reported. In another case, staff rented an apartment across the hall and "chronicled her entrances and exits via camera," the newspaper said.
https://www.wral.com/wall-street-journal-indicted-nc-insurance-tycoon-spied-on-women-he-wanted-to-da...

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

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NATION NEEDS BURR TO DELIVER NOW ON 2016 CAMPAIGN PROMISE: It was Burr himself who promised North Carolina’s voters, when he said he’d not seek re-election again, that he’d be an uncompromising presence -- withstanding and rising above partisanship when time and circumstance demanded it. North Carolinians cannot rely on Sen. Thom Tillis – who quakes at every Trump tweet and parrots whatever spin the White House sends out. This is a time when it appears the president is shaking down the leader of the Ukraine for campaign dirt on a potential opponent. He seeks to order border patrol agents to shoot migrants in the legs to slow them. This is not typical, normal or reasonable. The time is now for Burr to stand up. He needs to assure his constituents that his priority is the integrity of the presidency and the independence of the Senate and legislative branch of government.
https://www.wral.com/editorial-nation-needs-burr-to-deliver-now-on-2016-campaign-promise/18671224/

Saturday News: Appalachian injustice

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U.S. SUPREME COURT WILL DECIDE ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE FATE: The U.S. Supreme Court said Friday it would hear the appeal of Atlantic Coast Pipeline owners and the Trump administration over the rejection of a permit that would allow the natural gas line to cross the Appalachian Trail. A ruling for the pipeline will allow construction to resume by late summer next year and finish by late 2021, the email said. The Sierra Club and the Southern Environmental Law Center, which represented environmental groups in the case, said in a statement they will defend the Appeals Court decision. “The Atlantic Coast Pipeline is a dangerous, costly and unnecessary project, and we won’t stand by while Duke and Dominion Energy try to force it on our public lands, threatening people’s health, endangered species, iconic landscapes and clean water along the way,” their statement said.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article235795832.html

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