Daily dose: Take the money and run edition

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Ex-head of McCrory’s economic development group got $30K bonus (Policy Watch) – Richard Lindenmuth, the former head of North Carolina’s public-private economic development group, cashed-in with a $30,000 “stay” bonus in January, an enticement that only kept him at the new endeavor for three months.
http://pulse.ncpolicywatch.org/2015/07/30/ex-head-of-ncs-public-private-economic-development-group-g...

Daily dose: Godwin's Lawmaker Rabin edition

NC senator compares political correctness to Nazi book burnings (Raleigh News & Observer) -- State Sen. Ronald Rabin, a Harnett County Republican, said Thursday that a national push for politically correct language as akin to book burnings led by Nazi Germany. “There is no difference between all of this stifling of free speech and the book burnings that the Nazis did,” Rabin said during a floor speech.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/politics-columns-blogs/under-the-dome/article29...

VIVA trial update: More "surprise" evidence brought out

Standard Operating Procedure for the party of lies and misdirection:

Neesby was was explaining a chart he had created from Board's voter registration statistics when Plaintiff's attorney Josh Kaul stood up and objected. "We've never seen this before," said Kaul.

Neesby said the chart he presented was culled from data given to the Plaintiffs' team in January and June. Judge Thomas Schroeder overruled Kaul, saying Neesby was using data the Plaintiffs already had.

This is really not the same thing as giving your opposition reams of documents, and then selecting only one to present as evidence. A chart is meant to demonstrate a "pattern," and that pattern becomes the evidence presented. In the absence of having the chart beforehand, it's nearly impossible to verify the accuracy or relevance. And the fact the judge didn't immediately recognize that is further evidence of some previous misgivings brought up here at BlueNC about said judge.

GOP wrecking ball swings at teachers, again

Why should we care about your health after you've retired?

In a meeting Wednesday where House lawmakers discussed key differences between the two chambers’ 2015-17 budget proposals, Rep. Gary Pendleton (R-Raleigh) said he was all for eliminating retiree medical benefits for future teachers and state employees.

“That’s something that should have been done a long time ago,” said Pendleton after legislative staff outlined the differences between salaries and benefits in the House and Senate budgets.

Pardon my French, but va te faire foutre, you miserable excuse for a human being. Is that what they get for dedicating their life to nurturing and painstakingly preparing our children to go out in the world and succeed? A self-righteous brush-off by an investment manager who panders to wealthy, multi-generational families trying to dodge taxes? Well aren't we just lucky as hell to have you.

VIVA trial update: The fault-riddled Interstate Crosscheck system debated

Defense parades more broken memes:

In May 2014 the elections watchdog group Democracy North Carolina issued a press release saying it had found four North Carolina legislators whose first name, last name, date of birth matched voters registered in other states.

Plaintiff's attorney Daniel Donovan asked Strach if she thought the four lawmakers were committing fraud. "I'd have to investigate," she said.

Nice dodge there, Kim. But it doesn't change the fact that Interstate Crosscheck is just another voter suppression scheme cooked up by Republicans:

Daily dose: Ode to Henry Frye edition

A Dream Undone (New York Times) -- In 2008, for the first time, black turnout was nearly equal to white turnout, and Barack Obama was elected the nation’s first black president. Since then, however, the legal trend has abruptly reversed. In 2010, Republicans flipped control of 11 state legislatures and, raising the specter of voter fraud, began undoing much of the work of former N.C. legislator and state supreme court justice Henry Frye and subsequent generations of state legislators. They rolled back early voting, eliminated same-day registration, disqualified ballots filed outside home precincts and created new demands for photo ID at polling places. A new state voting law , the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University Law School, calls one of the “most restrictive since the Jim Crow era.”
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/29/magazine/voting-rights-act-dream-undone.html?_r=0

More Charter School Woes

From the Smoky Mountain News today: problems with the startup of Shining Rock Academy in Haywood County.

The school is scheduled to open in a couple of weeks. There were problems getting permits and construction started on time for land just north of the Waynesville city limits. As a result, the school is leasing space from the Lake Junaluska Assembly so they can begin operations. During the earlier land purchase, apparently the school's governing board failed to comply with the state's open meetings law, according to reporting in the SMN.

Coal Ash Wednesday: DENR to permit massive discharges from Sutton Plant

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It's not a "leak" if they let you spill it:

A public hearing on a discharge permit related to Duke Energy’s planned coal-ash cleanup has been moved to Aug. 6, a day later than originally scheduled.

Duke Energy is excavating and reburying 7.2 million tons of coal ash on the plant site to comply with a state law requiring the utility to close and clean up its coal-ash ponds throughout North Carolina. The Sutton plant was among the first on the list for cleanup because it has been actively leaking toxic substances into the groundwater and the Cape Fear River.

I'm not naïve, I realize the impoundments need to be "de-watered" before they can be dug up and hauled away. But just because the river is right there handy doesn't mean polluting it is the only way to go. They wouldn't be allowed to do that if it were a Superfund site, and considering the toxins involved, the only difference is in the name. Here's part of the NPDES Permit:

An accurate history of North Carolina's Confederate monuments

The North Carolina General Assembly passed and Deputy Assistant Governor P. McCrory signed legislation aimed at preserving Confederate monuments from corrective action. They offered ahistorical rationalizations for their actions, which Duke University professor Timothy Tyson concisely corrected.

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