NC GOP

New Year hopes from the naive at heart

A valiant but wasted effort by the N&O Editorial staff:

It would not be realistic, or even reasonable, to expect that Republicans and Democrats would join hands ’round a campfire, but neither should those who work in the Legislative Building on Jones Street act like foes on a field in Gettysburg.

For even among North Carolinians and Americans who agree on virtually nothing political, there are shared values and hopes: All hope their children will grow up, succeed, be happy and healthy and avoid the personal crises of drugs and violence and other temptations that destroy potential and pave a path to misery. It matters not whether they raise those children in mansions or cabins.

Yes, we all hope our own children will be happy, healthy and successful. But that's where the difference between Republicans and Democrats becomes evident. Republicans don't really care about other people's children; whether those kids succeed or fail, it's simply not their responsibility. It's a selfish and fatalistic approach to public service, and one of which they should be ashamed, but they've got the dogma-spouting Randians there by their side, providing what they think is legitimacy for such inhuman behavior. And that can be applied to the world at-large, as well:

Coal Ash Wednesday: More state control = more danger

Exactly the opposite of what we need:

For a President who likes to champion cleaner, safer and cost effective energy and environmental solutions, it caught some by surprise when Barack Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency punted on December 19th on classifying toxic coal ash as a hazardous waste which would have set stringent disposal requirements. Instead coal ash is now classified as non-hazardous waste, equivalent in many respects to household garbage.

EPA’s ruling leaves a lot of discretion to state authorities and that’s a big problem, Holleman asserted. Investor-owned utilities are very powerful in their home states. They exert significant influence over who’s elected or appointed to administer disposal rules and then how those rules are enforced, or effectively ignored.

At one time the Hometicks (realtors) ruled the roost in the General Assembly, but in the last six years or so, Duke Energy has emerged as the undisputed king of lobbying in Raleigh, and their will be done. And when that level of influence is being wielded, there's simply no room left for the people.

The enemy at home: Payday lenders and the military

Swimming in shark-infested waters:

Among other protections, the act bans members of the military from being charged more than 36 percent in annual interest on certain consumer loans. Payday, auto title and tax refund-anticipation loans are among those covered by the cap.

But attorneys general and regulators say lenders have used loopholes in the act to prey on members of the military. Richard Cordray, director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a federal regulator, in September said some lenders lurk just outside of military bases to offer loans that fall just beyond the act's limits.

One more issue that sets Democrats apart from Republicans, especially here in NC. Republicans don't think it's their responsibility to "intervene" in a "business arrangement" between two willing entities, even if that arrangement is fraudulent and even if the victim has already put his/her life on the line for the country, day after bloody day, for years. There are a lot of disgusting things associated with the NC GOP's mismanagement of our state, but this one is easily in the top five.

Supply-sider approach to opening charter schools in NC

Build it and they might come. Or not:

Only one of the nine charters that opened in the Charlotte region this year met enrollment projections, and the total enrollment for the nine new schools was only about half of what was projected. Two others approved for 2014 openings delayed a year.

Eddie Goodall, executive director of the N.C. Public Charter Schools Association, an industry group that supports charters and advocates for them, rejected the idea that any region of the state has a charter-school surplus. “Not even close,” he said. A signal that an area may have enough charters is “when parents quit demanding them,” Goodall said, and that hasn’t happened yet.

Right, because anecdotal evidence supplied by a lobbyist is much more accurate than statistics derived from actual enrollment numbers. ;)

The anti-abortion zealots are not done yet

As the upcoming session of the NCGA will soon demonstrate:

The rules also require written agreements with nearby hospitals for emergencies – or proof that the clinic tried to obtain those agreements. That’s important, because hospitals in other states could effectively shut down a clinic by declining such agreements.

A handful of speakers, however, were critical. That included North Carolina Values Coalition executive director Tami Fitzgerald, who said the rules don’t go far enough in protecting women. Specifically, Fitzgerald wants stiffer certification requirements and no exceptions for clinics that don’t obtain transfer agreements with hospitals.

Nothing gets under my skin worse than a double-talking hypocrite. Tami Fitzgerald doesn't give a damn about "protecting women," and every time lies like that slide out of her mouth, her "values" are exposed for what they are, nothing more than the ravings of a brainwashed cult member.

Pope's Puppets swing and miss in defending UNC BOG

When Libertarians try to rewrite history:

In the 2012-13 academic year, the center hosted members of the AFL-CIO to discuss “the legislature’s war on labor”; screened clips from a “Story of America: A Nation Divided,” about “the fundamental divisions and the political struggle throughout America”; screened “The American Winter,” which “highlights the human impact of budget cuts to social services, a shrinking middle class, and the fracturing of the American Dream”; discussed “Wage Theft in North Carolina”; and invited people to projects sponsored by the Durham People’s Alliance and the N.C. Justice Center.

Where were the success stories of combating poverty through limited government and economic freedom – the approach that has saved millions from poverty in countries such as Taiwan, Estonia and South Korea? They weren’t mentioned, as far as one can tell from the archives.

To their main underlying complaint, that Conservative and/or Free Market proponents are not "invited" to such seminars: When you refuse to acknowledge that poverty and wage inequality and workplace discrimination and a bunch of other problems even exist, much less need to be addressed, why should you be included in these discussions? And we wouldn't be having many of these discussions if your bent ideology hadn't permeated the Legislature already, encouraging massive cuts to the social safety net. So thanks, but no thanks. And as far as your "missing" examples of small government success stories, you've (as usual) overlooked the obvious:

The definition of insanity

Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result:

N.C. House members expect to vote Friday on whether to recommend easing requirements for mortgage lenders – a move that proponents say would cut costs for the industry but critics say would dilute protections for borrowers. Rep. John Bell, co-chair of a study committee examining the proposed changes, told the Observer on Thursday that he and other lawmakers plan to file legislation to be taken up when the General Assembly convenes in January.

“I personally believe that these were reasonable and well-vetted (changes) and these recommendations will continue to be vetted through the committee process in the General Assembly before becoming law – if they become law.”

The Attorney General's office is still conducting investigations of mortgage lender wrongdoing that took place six years ago, and you want to roll back consumer protections that are woefully inadequate already? Here's a little piece of advice, John: Just because lobbyists for a particular industry say they want something, it doesn't mean granting them their wish will improve the economy. For this industry, just the opposite is often the case, and you would know that if you had been paying attention for the last eight years.

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