Adding salt to the wound is the state-imposed utility tax, which went from 3 percent to 7 percent as of July 1. The tax increase comes from Raleigh’s effort to protect a threatened minority (wealthy people and large corporations) and redistribute wealth (from the lower and middle classes to the wealthy).
Gov. Pat McCrory takes credit for that. He got a 2 percent cut in individual income tax and even larger cut in corporate state income tax, and said “other taxes have gone up to make up the difference. It was tax reform with a move to more of a consumption-based tax. You pay tax on a newspaper now, lawyers have to pay tax, there are a host of other new or increased consumption taxes and we closed up a lot of loopholes.”
Remember that the next time your Republican lawmakers say they cut your taxes.
Even if they do remember most of the Republicans' base is afflicted with the "Democrats did it too!" method of rationalization. And usually they're screaming that from under the bus their heroes have placed them.
“POETRY IS NOT AN EXPRESSION OF THE PARTY LINE.” – ALLEN GINSBERG
All the world's a poet: Laureate flap inspires more verse (Raleigh News & Observer) -- We asked readers to send poems responding to the uproar that ensued when Gov. Pat McCrory, who didn’t go through established channels, chose a relatively unknown poet from Fuquay-Varina as the state’s poet laureate. Valerie Macon has since stepped down. Here is a sampling of those poems: PAT IN THE HAT -- There once was a governor named Pat/ Who put on his own stupid hat/ When appointing a poet/ He didn’t quite know it/ The state has a system for that. WARM EMBRACE -- When art’s left to our politicians,/ It’s subject to noxious conditions./ The state’s warm embrace/ Can become a disgrace/ And displeasing to academicians. http://www.newsobserver.com/2014/07/18/4015028/all-the-worlds-a-poet-no-...
Greetings and salutations to one and all. The new day has arrived.
Only a few weeks after Our immaculate conception, we have been born anew, heralded and certified by the Secretary of State, with a host of rights and privileges Our human counterparts can only dream of enjoying.
Be it hereby proclaimed, the date of July 11, 2014, will go down in Our history as a momentous and transformational beginning, the day We evolved to obtain those inalienable rights granted exclusively to Corporate Persons in the United States of America and in North Carolina.
It costs an estimated $50,000 per day to keep the NC general assembly in session. Tillisberger is keeping the NCGA in session much longer than estimated, and much longer than necessary, as they argue about who should suffer pain so that teachers can get a pay raise. So far, the potential pain recipients they've considered include old people, blind people, kids, disabled people, teacher assistants, school nurses and the teachers themselves.
They have not considered slightly reducing the extreme comfort level of Art Pope and his wealthy friends.
As lawmakers continue to snarl at each other over the state budget in the July swelter, predictions that the state House and Senate would wrap up their summer session by the end of June look laughably optimistic in hindsight.
$50,000 per day. For every day of the NC GOP legislators' theatrics, ten teachers could get a $5,000 raise.
So how will North Carolina finish 2014? As with the nation, I predict some broad economic gains. Production and jobs will increase, and more companies will become confident about the future. The unemployment rate could dip below 5 percent in fast-growing areas like Asheville and the Triangle. Yet there will be plenty of economic gaps. Many of the jobs created will be low-paying, and most workers will see little or no gain in their hourly earnings. Many people will still have to accept part-time work even though they want to work full-time. And the economic improvement won’t be spread evenly across our state. Several areas will still have jobless rates of 7 percent or higher.
While there is no dispute that “the overt racism of the 1960s is largely a thing of the past,” it is also true that in far too many places affected by the Supreme Court’s 2013 decision voiding a critical section of the Voting Rights Act, racial discrimination continues to flourish.
One of the indignities of discrimination is the insistence on simply reducing it to “feelings.” But it is a matter of fact, not perception, that all of North Carolina’s voting provisions disproportionately affect racial minorities. Whether local officials are “shocked” by allegations of racial motives is beside the point.
Exactly. It doesn't (or shouldn't) matter if the intent of the law was to marginalize minority voters, and it also shouldn't matter if that intent can be proved legally. The facts on the ground are what matters, and those facts are disenfranchising a segment of our voting population. And it shouldn't be a partisan debate. These are Constitutional rights we're talking about, no matter how much propaganda and twisting is being done by those who would limit those rights for others.
POET LAUREATE LAMENT
9:15 p.m. Secretary Susan Kluttz Comments on Resignation of Valerie Macon as Poet Laurearte (N.C. Dept. of Cultural Resources Release) -- Valerie Macon, recently appointed North Carolina's poet laureate, resigned from the position today stating in her letter that she does not want, "the negative attention that this appointment has generated to discourage or distract attention from the Office of Poet Laureate." "I am saddened by this entire situation," said Susan Kluttz, Secretary of the N.C. Dept. of Cultural Resources. "I met with Valerie Macon and was very impressed with her passion to use her talent to combat homelessness. I am sorry that she became the focus of disingenuous comments that she did not deserve. I pledge to her and to all artists, both new and experienced, that this department will do all we can to support their creativity." http://www.ncdcr.gov/News/tabid/95/EntryId/505/Secretary-Susan-Kluttz-Co...
Submitted by scharrison on Thu, 07/17/2014 - 10:35am
If this is what they call "success," one would hate to see them fail:
Since the operation began on May 6, approximately 2,500 tons of coal ash and river sediment have been removed from this location. Crews and equipment were staged at Abreu-Grogan Park in Danville for the past three months.
The company previously completed removal of ash and sediment from water treatment facilities in Danville and South Boston, as well as from locations in the river at the Dan River Steam Station and Town Creek, two miles downstream from the plant. More than 500 tons of coal ash and river sediment were removed from these areas.
Do the math. A low-end estimate on the spill had some 39,000 tons of ash released, and this combined 3,000 tons removed included an unknown quantity of non-ash sediment. What's left in the river could be closer to 95%. And the General Assembly wants to give Duke Energy "more flexibility" in the cleanup/relocation of all the other coal ash ponds?
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