BlueNC @
Friday, November 15, 2013 - 4:29pm

Something I'm learning, albeit slowly: in order to be an effective advocate for the things in which you believe, you must take time to appreciate life's simple pleasures. Family, friends, pets, the myriad of beautiful green growing things, music, art, food, sex (if you can get it), and whatever else makes you smile.

PS. Just because the Earth is swinging around and isn't exposing the North American continent to quite as many solar rays as it gets at other times, it doesn't mean you don't need these sunglasses. Besides, they're cool.

BlueNC @
Wednesday, November 13, 2013 - 11:57am
Triangle region bus/light rail transit poll:
BlueNC @
Tuesday, November 12, 2013 - 11:37am

But the Court fell short of enforcing those rulings:

What's been clearly affirmed is that the lawmakers are hostile to the pre-K program and would rather not have one that serves all those who need it. The court offered them no such choice.

The earlier rulings regarding a sound, basic education and the right to pre-kindergarten schooling, it warned, "remain in full force and effect." As for the revisions that moved the lawmakers off the tracks, the court went out of its way to say, "We express no opinion on the legislation now in effect because questions of its constitutionality are not before us."

Meaning Republicans can continue to nibble away at pre-school funding while placing subjective requirements on children and families who want to enroll. If not doing your job is considered a "victory" for the GOP, then they've got one.

BlueNC @
Monday, November 11, 2013 - 11:56am

The dissolution of the Rural Center is a painful mistake:

Since last spring, the family has been following state-recommended precautions such as limiting their showers to 5 minutes, to avoid exposing themselves to the insecticide dieldrin. They drink and cook using bottled water delivered every two weeks.

A $953,000 project by the city of Hendersonville was supposed to start this fall, extending city water lines to homes... But a delay in state permitting for the project — along with setbacks with a N.C. Department of Commerce Community Development Block Grant — have pushed back the start of construction to January or February, city officials said last week.

City Manager John Connet said the Department of Commerce is "in the process of a rule change about what qualifies. We're kind of in limbo. Basically, we've got a project that there's questions whether it fits in a pot of money under the old guidelines or a pot of money under the new guidelines."

It's safe to say McCrory's and Decker's priorities don't include a few dozen rural families whose water is contaminated. I have a feeling this is merely the tip of the iceberg of needed projects that will be canceled under the new regime, but tracking them will be a challenge. If you are aware of any other previously approved grants in jeopardy, please let us know.

BlueNC @
Friday, November 8, 2013 - 9:23am

Apparently the free market doesn't concern itself with intellectual property:

For more than a week Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky has been fending off criticism for using the writings of others, unattributed, in his own speeches, in an opinion article and in one of his books.

But now it appears that Mr. Paul has also been the possible victim of literary larceny himself; he has apparently had his own material lifted without credit.

Wow. He didn't just take some ideas, he Xeroxed 'em.

BlueNC @
Thursday, November 7, 2013 - 10:49am

The McCrory administration's inept hiring practices continue:

"Women drivers, rain and Obama care" were causing problems on the beltline Wednesday afternoon, according to a traffic alert from the North Carolina Department of Transportation. "Stay home," the alert advised.

"The individual violated procedures by failing to turn off the external feed while testing and for the inappropriate test message content. The contractor was let go immediately for this action," DOT officials said in a statement.

It was a stupid mistake, but what's even more stupid is the idea of making emergency messages like this automated in the first place. Road conditions change continually, and an incorrect message can cause more problems (and danger) than no message at all. A labor-saving system isn't "efficient" if it can't do the job properly.

BlueNC @
Tuesday, November 5, 2013 - 8:46am

For those who didn't participate in early voting this year, drop a quick note about your voting experience today.

BlueNC @
Saturday, November 2, 2013 - 6:55pm

Why I vote for terrible Democrats. An interesting take on the hard reality of today's political environment.

open thread
BlueNC @
Wednesday, October 30, 2013 - 10:20am

The rewriting of history continues:

"We did not shut off WIC. What we did was the right thing and warned people that if the shutdown would have continued that means we would not have had the money to pay for it," said McCrory.

On October 8th, The Department of Health and Human Services discontinued issuing WIC benefits. At that point, DHHS said 80-percent of the recipients already received their checks.

Someone needs to explain to the DAG that "discontinued" is synonymous with "shut off." On second thought, get rid of the big word and just tell him they mean the same thing.

BlueNC @
Tuesday, October 29, 2013 - 9:08am

Choosing a faulty pattern:

A new national report says a proposed privatization of economic development in North Carolina may create scandals instead of jobs.

In Indiana, which North Carolina is using as a model, a state audit found more that 40 percent of the jobs promised by companies recruited to the state never materialized. The Indiana Economic Development Corp.’s representative in China has been accused of soliciting bribes from companies, the report states.

There's nothing wrong with bribery. Bribery is just the free market sorting itself out.