Tuesday Twitter roundup

Not sure I really want to look back, but here we go:

Should have been #1:

3. “House committee OK’s new version of abortion bill”

In a high-drama legislative session, a bill to tighten standards on abortion clinics took the show. Hours after the governor threatened to veto one version, House lawmakers debuted a revamped abortion bill without any advance notice in July as the session neared an end.

The abortion language was attached to a motorcycle safety measure, the juxtaposition of which became a rallying cry for critics. The legislation made national news when the House voted later the same day to approve it and send it to the Senate, which just days before had approved its own version in a bill tacked on to another dealing with Islamic law.

Not only did this legislation strike a blow against women's rights, they passed it in such an overtly deceptive fashion it was plain they knew it couldn't survive the full due diligence such a controversial law deserves. The frightening nature of such an assault on Democracy should have garnered more clicks than other stories, regardless of your views on abortion.

Another depressing look back:

And it's not a good report card, either:

The most common metric for tracking changes in Arctic sea ice over time is sea ice extent. Extent approximates the sea ice you would see from a bird's-eye view, and it has been declining at a rate of more than 14 percent per decade since satellite measurements began in 1979. If you were to descend below the sea surface, your fish's-eye view would provide an equally dramatic decline: sea ice is not only shrinking across the ocean surface, it's also thinning.

With little to offset the ice loss through the Fram Strait, multi-year, thick ice has declined. The oldest sea ice left in the Arctic generally clings to the Canadian Archipelago, but it is a thin ribbon of ice compared to the much larger amounts in the 1980s and 1990s. In March 1988, thick multiyear ice (4+ years) comprised 26 percent of the Arctic's ice pack. In 2005, that number dropped to 19 percent. In 2013, it dropped to 7 percent.

The loss of old, thick ice amplifies the impact of Arctic warming and sea ice melt. When sea ice survives multiple melt seasons, it generally thickens, which makes it more resistant to melting during hot summers. Today, a blanket of ice still forms over the Arctic each winter, but it's a thin blanket, dominated by young ice, which melts far more quickly when summer arrives.

The only way to stop/reverse this process is embodied in a number: 350. Its not impossible, but we don't seem to be interested in even halting the climb of atmospheric C02, which has passed 400 parts per million point. Future generations will not be happy with us, for good reason.

Yeah, that's just...great. So, um...is there a Primary opponent yet? Because, you know. Sometimes Primaries can be really important...

I know everybody and their excited spokesbots have been trolling for money lately, but I'm putting my stamp of approval on these folks. I...don't actually have an approval stamp, that's just one of those things that you say. ;)

Is that "cat" analogy really necessary? You've been spending way too much time reading blogs...

She's a keeper, Sam. Don't f* it up.

Not sure the article will totally destroy said meme, but it definitely takes some of the punch out of it:

It's a question loaded with import as we begin what promises to be yet another year of voter suppression in America. For it's a question that Republican officials and other supporters of voting restrictions have been asking all over the country over the past few years, in countless iterations, as they relentlessly push ahead with measures that purport to ensure "fairness" and "accuracy" in voting but that are designed instead to disenfranchise the poor and the elderly, the ill and the young, and, most of all, people of color.

You know who had a good answer for this variety of question? Richard Nixon. In 1957, after the Senate passed an amendment that watered down that year's already-diluted civil rights legislation, Eisenhower's vice president said, "This is one of the saddest days in the history of the Senate. It was a vote against the right to vote." And so are votes today for these new ID laws. They are votes against the ability of fellow citizens to cast a ballot or to have that ballot counted. They are votes that are hostile to the least powerful, the most vulnerable, among us.

In my opinion, the biggest challenge in dealing with this voter id issue is the self-centeredness of people in general. The vast majority of people in our society already have a photo id, one that they obtained during the normal course of their lives, so their reality becomes everybody else's. They have cars, and credit cards, and bank accounts, and all the other trappings of being an active capitalist spinning around on the consumer-driven dance floor. They simply can't imagine that hundreds of thousands of their fellow citizens were not invited to that dance, or simply choose not to step out. And you can throw all the statistics in the world at them, but it won't stop them from projecting their own lives onto that of others.

The key to shaking them loose from this self-inflicted delusion is real people. It may be anecdotal, but nobody ever said anecdotes aren't effective. They may not be scientifically useful in determining the depth of a problem but, as we've seen countless times in recent years, science is more often than not ignored anyway. So we need some video interviews of folks who don't have an id, but who also want to vote. Or articles with photographs, whatever. Something to break the trance of the navel-gazing public, if that's even possible.

Dependent on what? The way things are going, your hero Art Pope is going to hack away the remaining tatters of the safety net. I don't want utopia, I just want to be able to sleep at night without worrying about 1 in 5 of NC's children going hungry. And I can't simply block it out like you right-wingers can.

Well, at least we're not West Virginia. Jesus. Is their Legislature nothing more than a fax machine now?

Okay, I'll freely admit I won't be doing any modeling for Dolce & Gabbana anytime soon, but Junior Berger needs to avoid the camera whenever possible. Looks like something Saruman pulled out of a hole in the ground and marked with a white hand...

And then there's the father:

Phil Berger: North Carolina is the mirror image of Minnesota — a state where Republicans took control and governed with little regard for compromise. And while Pat McCrory may be North Carolina’s governor, Berger, the state Senate president, is the undisputed driving force behind policies on election law, tax cuts and social issues the legislature passed this year. To make clear just who ran the show, the legislature overrode McCrory’s only two vetoes without breaking sweat.

But if there are political consequences to Berger’s agenda, they could reverberate in 2014. The elections bill in particular is galvanizing Democrats, who, if they turn lemons into lemonade, could register and organize thousands of new voters. State House Speaker Thom Tillis, who frequently found himself in the middle of the McCrory-Berger feud, could bear the burden of the legislature’s actions as he runs against U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan (D) next year.

Feud? Yeah, right. More like bad kabuki theatre.

That's all the looking back I can stand. Time for some Onion:



"overtly deceptive" is not an oxymoron

At least when dealing with the evolutionary throwbacks in the NC General Assembly, anyway.

The toast is stale:

It may have been relevant at one time, before Republicans took over. But now the toast needs to end with:

Where the weak grow weaker and the rich grow richer.

It turns out

that BackwardNC already has published the complete revised state toast (along with the new state song and state symbols).

"I will have a priority on building relationships with the minority caucus. I want to put substance behind those campaign speeches." -- Thom Tillis, Nov. 5, 2014

We all need to chip in

and get scharrison an approval stamp!

"I will have a priority on building relationships with the minority caucus. I want to put substance behind those campaign speeches." -- Thom Tillis, Nov. 5, 2014

I would use it! :)

Except on my own stuff, which would be unethical...:)

We should probably get a pair

We're sure you'd want a "Rejected" stamp to go with the stamp of approval, right? It probably would be more fun to use the stamp of rejection! Personally, I would stamp right over John Hood's picture, but you can do whatever you want...

"I will have a priority on building relationships with the minority caucus. I want to put substance behind those campaign speeches." -- Thom Tillis, Nov. 5, 2014

We could easily be following in their footsteps:

With awareness of China’s severe environmental degradation rising, there has been a surge of anxiety in the last year among ordinary Chinese and some officials over soil pollution in the country’s agricultural centers and the potential effects on the food chain. In recent years, the government has conducted widespread testing of soil across China, but it has not released the results, adding to the fear and making it more difficult for most Chinese to judge what they eat and pinpoint the offending factories.

An alarming glimpse of official findings came on Monday, when a vice minister of land and resources, Wang Shiyuan, said at a news conference in Beijing that eight million acres of China’s farmland, equal to the size of Maryland, had become so polluted that planting crops on it “should not be allowed.”

A signal moment came in May, when officials in Guangdong Province, in the far south, said they had discovered excessive levels of cadmium in 155 batches of rice collected from markets, restaurants and storehouses.

Left unchecked, industries will follow the path of least resistance and cost, and in no way should be relied upon to make the right decisions for the safety and health of citizens.

The Onion has always been great

and often prescient.

Just change some of the names from this story from nearly a decade ago.

"I will have a priority on building relationships with the minority caucus. I want to put substance behind those campaign speeches." -- Thom Tillis, Nov. 5, 2014