Progressive bloggrrrls hop on the Edwards train

I'm posting about this development because I have connections to both Amanda Marcotte of Pandagon (I'm the co-blogger there) and Melissa McEwan of Shakespeare's Sister (we launched the Big Brass Alliance during the Downing Street Minutes brouhaha).

These fine women are two big names in the progressive blogosphere who have been tapped to work for the John Edwards campaign. Amanda will be moving to NC to helm the Edwards blog as Blogmistress (or as she refers to it, Blogatrix), and Melissa will be the campaign's Netroots Coordinator.

You can’t say that they aren’t a savvy crew over there at Team Edwards, because they are scooping up the big guns on the almost-A list (they are both A in my book, but we know what I mean when it comes to the big boys in the blog world, underline boys). The folks at Pandagon and at Shakes Sis are large, politically engaged and active readers — and will give the Edwards camp a fair hearing. I’m sure that these developments are due to Elizabeth Edwards, who is well-versed and ever-present in the blogosphere.


Open thread: January stats

Good stuff. Click on the pic.

Wanted: 5000 North Carolinians to Educate the Council of State

(X-posted from Kleinschmidt2005)

Last week Judge Stephens finally pulled the brake on the runaway train that is NC's execution procedures. He pulled so hard the train jumped track and barrelled right into the living room of the members of the Council of State. Now the good folks over at the NC Coalition for a Moratorium are giving you a way to help the Honorable Council Members figure out how to solve this predicament. I learned about their efforts when this email came into my inbox a few minutes ago....

Dear Friends,

Last Thursday, when Superior Court Judge Donald Stephens imposed a temporary ban on executions, he effectively put NC back at the forefront of the national moratorium movement! The situation that has unfolded goes like this:

Help urgently needed: Can you write a bill?

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

The folks at NO OLF are energized by all the new conversations taking place, and are ready for the fight ahead. One specific action they want to take is to get legislation through the General Assembly in the form of a resolution that would call on the Navy to drop Site C from their considered set. The legislators they've talked with need a draft bill.

If you or someone you know is familiar with the protocol here, would you please help us out? Here are the essential ingredients:

Protecting Family Farms and the Environment

WHEREAS the United States Navy is seeking to locate an outlying landing field in Washington County (Site C),

AND WHEREAS the United States Navy was found to have misrepresented the facts and reverse-engineered its Environmental Impact Statement to make it appear that Site C was an ideal choice,

AND WHEREAS United States Air Force experts in bird strike analysis have reported that Site C is not a suitable location for the Navy's training needs,

AND WHEREAS the US Government has placed a gag order on US Fish and Wildlife experts from telling the truth about the threats the landing field would create on the environment,

Germany Issues Warrants for NC CIA pilots

According to the Washington Post this morning:

BERLIN, Jan. 31 -- German prosecutors on Wednesday said they have issued arrest warrants for 13 CIA operatives suspected of kidnapping a German citizen in the Balkans in 2004 and taking him to a secret prison in Afghanistan before realizing several months later that they had the wrong person.

According to an AP report out of Berlin in the Charlotte Observer and Durham Herald-Sun:

ARD public television reported that investigators worked from passport photocopies made by a hotel where the suspects stayed. The report gave what it said were the cover names of three men who were pilots and lived in North Carolina.


Do the Right Thing

Crossposted at - Sam

Over the next few months, insidious rumors will engulf many Democratic candidates for president. Fox News has repeated (and hardly retracted) false slurs about Barack Obama, accusing him of attending a madrassa that breeds Islamist radicals. Bill Clinton had Gennifer Flowers. Al Gore was misquoted, again and again, even though he never made a statement as absurd as "[He] invented the Internet." Now, John Edwards is being targeted.

Rob Christensen of the Raleigh News & Observer wrote a story for the N&O, the Charlotte Observer, and other publications that claims that Senator Edwards is fielding numerous questions about his home in Chapel Hill, NC. Christensen claims that people are asking if John can fight for poverty when he lives in a very nice residence (answer: of course he can!). Of course, this is an old reporting trick: it's Christensen who's actually asking the question. It's clear that he's starting a conversation instead of reporting on it:


Judy Shepard at UNC

Cross Post from Matt's

Judy Shepard, mother of Matthew Shepard, the victim of a horrendous anti-gay hate crime in October 1998, spoke Tuesday evening to a group of hundreds of students and community members from across the state at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Her main message of the night: "Tell your stories and just be who you are." Mrs. Shepard proclaimed that a "Catch-22" certainly exists. The only way things will change for the LGBT community is if people start to tell their stories. Many LGBT people, however, are afraid to "come out" with their stories due to the discrimination and prejudice which still exists. She said that despite the fear, we all must be willing to take the giant leap of faith trusting that we are on the right side and the right will win.

She challenged the audience, asking, "What has happened to our world?" She spoke to her upbringing and how she was taught the "Golden Rule." She spoke of the dreams her and people her age had during the 1960s. She pondered as to what happened to those dreams. Why are we ignoring all of these issues today?

Dan Besse announces for Lt. Governor

Although it has been "known" in Winston-Salem circles since October, Dan Besse, city council member, has made his bid for Lt. Governor official.

His web site actually has fairly detailed information (but someone needs to help clean up the fonts).

He introduces himself this way:

I believe that North Carolina needs and deserves leadership committed to the ideals of economic and educational opportunity for all, and conservation of the clean air, water, and land on which we all depend.

I have pursued these aims through over two decades of professional work and public service--as a public interest attorney for poor families; as an effective state-level advocate for clean air and water and public health; and as an elected local and regional leader.

I am not a part of his campaign, but as someone who ran for office in Forsyth County this fall, I can share my perspective below the fold.

Gag Order Issued in OLF Dispute: Navy Playing Politics - As Usual

This, friends, should be surprising, but it's not. This is typical of strong-arm tactics being used by the United States Navy to deprive We the People of access to information they consider "inconvenient." This came via email, so no links. Please send this to your Congressmen and representatives in the General Assembly.

US Fish and Wildlife Service placed under gag order regarding Navy’s planned OLF

Chapel Hill– U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologists in North Carolina have been prohibited from talking to reporters, opposing parties or the public about the Navy’s proposed outlying landing field (OLF) in northeastern North Carolina. The directive was issued last Friday by U.S. Department of Interior Deputy Assistant Secretary Todd Willens and comes in advance of the Navy’s release of a court-ordered Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement, expected next month.

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