Burr and Dole on the OLF

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The only good thing to come out of the Navy's OLF travesty is the fact that North Carolina's elected officials in Congress have nowhere to hide. Under the bright light of public scrutiny, the idiocy of our two Republican Senators shines for all to see. The N&O has the story.

First, this from Dick Burr:

"Today's release of the Supplemental Environmental Impact survey is one more step in the process to determine the proper site for the Outlying Landing Field," said Laura Caudell, press secretary for Sen. Richard Burr. She said Burr recognized the importance of the Navy's ability to train pilots as long as it followed the law in pursuit of a training site. He also recognizes the need to protect the rights of citizens in North Carolina and for environmental stewardship of our state, she said.

N & O Officially Becomes a College Tabloid

We take as a fact that the News & Observer is not the best paper in the world: it might not get the facts right all the time, they may not be particularly insightful, they may not be able to analyze national politics, and have a tendency to pander to the right. But I never thought that the N&O would take the precious resources that are left to them after the buyout and try to become a tabloid for UNC (not that I could pick a better school to be a tabloid for). This week it looks like they have.

The incident was this: A UNC male student staged what at first appears to be a singing valentine to his girlfriend (a NC State student) in the Pit at UNC [the Pit is the main student hang-out during the day on UNC's campus, being next to the library, the gym, some classrooms, and most importantly the food court]. With cameras rolling and a crowd formed, the singing started and then after the singing there was a vicious breakup, complete with F-bombs, personal attacks, and derisive comments on the promiscuity of women at NC State. Problem is that the incident was clearly staged and there is good liklihood that the entire scene was faked. (if you want to watch just search "Pit breakup" in YouTube; I do not want to sully our frontpage with this stuff).

How the 10th's Pat McHenry rates

[Cross posted at Pat go bye-bye]

For those of you who don't know much about North Carolina's 10th district representative, don't trust my opinion. For your illumination, I've checked out some of the most prestigious organizations in the country to see how they rate him based on voting record.

According to Project Vote Smart, Pat McHenry rates a zero, zilch, nada, zippo from the DAV, the Humane Society, the NEA, Defenders of Wildlife, National Committee for an Effective Congress, American Immigration Lawyers, Service Employees International Union, American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, the Alliance for Retied Americans, NARAL, Planned Parenthood, and the Leadership Council on Civil Rights.

The Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America gave him a grade of F.

Shocking News: Navy Wants Site C

As Greg Flynn has already commented, North Carolina citizens were shocked today when the Navy announced that Site C was its preferred location for destroying the Pocosin Wildlife Refuge and hundreds of family farms its outlying landing field. Go read the executive summary for a first-class lesson in double-talk by the masters of bullshit in your United States Navy.

The best way to put and end to this travesty is for Senator Dole to put her foot down and say enough is enough. But we know that's not going to happen. The next best way is for the US House to nix the deal on Site C in their next appropriations bill.

The next best thing, which may be the most likely, is another lawsuit. If this ends up in court again, the outcome will be the same as it was last time. Nothing has changes. It's another study reverse engineered to end up with Site C. We can only hope the Navy will have to pay court costs and damages for harassing the people of Washington County again.

Tagged:

On Unions.

This started out as a comment over at this John Edwards diary, in response to this comment by SPLib.

Edwards: "...ban the hiring of permanent replacement workers."

So, workers should have all the freedom to come and go as they please, but a business cannot choose who to hire and how long they work for them?

If you want to strike, you take the risk of being replaced.

Sure, most people think they are irreplacable at their jobs, but what if everyone KNEW they couldn't be replaced? That sure is a non-motivator for excellence and productivity. Sounds like France.

To understand my comment below, I think you really have to understand my history with unions. I was raised in a coal mining county, everyone mined coal and the sound of Triaxles slowing down with their Jake Break was a constant backdrop to my life, as they flew down our mainstreet about every 10 minutes all day and all night long. The boom was great, the pay was great, everyone had a new car and went on vacations and painted their houses, pools were built, cookouts were common, all the kids had new cleats and baseball gloves each summer. Then, Reagan was elected. Steel moved overseas and with it the need for coal. Soon, even the power plants stopped asking for coal, because they found it cheaper to buy it from China. But, a few die-hard coal companies still existed, and even one or two still exist today as a shadow of their former selves. A company that remained was the one my dad worked for, and one day the Unions came to town. They wanted the workers to hold a vote on whether to allow a union rep on the premises to talk with the workers. The owner called my Dad in, who had worked his way up from a bulldozer operator to be a higher-level foreman. He told him, "Bill, if they vote yes, I'm shuttin' her down. I've got my money, I've got money put away for the kids, and right now we're just breaking even. I can't afford a union."

Planned Outage

No BlueNC for you on Sunday from 3am until 6am:

We were just informed one hour ago from our building management that an emergency maintenance window is scheduled for this Saturday morning, February 24th, at 1AM PST. UPDATE! The building has just changed the window to be 23 hours later.. it is now scheduled for Sunday morning, February 25th, at 12:01AM PST. This maintenance window involves taking our entire building’s power offline for approximately 3 hours. The word from the building:

It was discovered by ABM Engineering during the power monitoring equipment installation, that a Phase C Conductor Cable on UPS #4 has been compromised to the point that immediate action to repair it is necessary or a ground fault will occur to the building systems.

Lt. Governor Perdue Says "No" to Site C

Tim Crowley, communications director for Lt. Gov. Perdue, sent me an email tonight with the Lt. Governor's position on the Navy's OLF plans.

"An OLF shouldn't be forced on a community that doesn't want it. I continue to believe the Navy should find a suitable location for an OLF in our state." Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue

Lt. Gov. Perdue is the most senior state official to speak out publicly against the Navy's plans to force its way into Washington County. Her statement will be a significant boost to farmers and environmentalists concerned about the destructive impacts an OLF would have on families and communities in northeast North Carolina. People alarmed about the risk to Navy pilots of bird strikes near the Pocosin Wildlife Refuge will also welcome her statement.

Thomas Wright under attack


 
This morning the News & Observer's Under the Dome observes:

that [Jim] Black wants to cooperate with authorities and his doing so could make others "uncomfortable."

Black is motivated to share what he knows and try to avoid prison time, [Kenneth] Bell [Black's attorney] said. Black faces a maximum of 10 years on the corruption charge.

As I sat in both courtrooms while Black pleaded guilty, his voice growing quieter at every response, my heart was hoping that these events would bring closure to a sad era in State politics but my head was telling me otherwise. The evidence presented barely hinted at the evidence "unpresented" or the permutations of lines that were tripped over, if not stepped over, by various legislators and contributors associated with Black.

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