Monday News: The HB2 blame game


SUSAN LADD: MCCRORY BLAMING EVERYONE BUT HIMSELF FOR HB 2 FALLOUT (Greensboro News & Record column) -- Gov. Pat McCrory continues to blame everyone else for his problems, which last week included the announcement that the NBA was pulling its All-Star Game out of Charlotte because of House Bill 2, which excludes LGBT citizens from discrimination protection.

The GOP's misguided approach to economic development

Far behind where we should be:

How bad is the economy in the rural areas of the state? Last year, of the 83,700 jobs added in North Carolina, 75 percent were in Raleigh and Charlotte. The projection for this year is that there will be 86,000 new jobs with 55 percent in Raleigh and Charlotte.

That’s not to suggest there isn’t any growth or entrepreneurial innovation in North Carolina. But often those efforts are met with hostility instead of support. A case in point is the state’s growing clean energy economy. Rather than support one of the fastest growing renewable energy sectors in the nation, Republican leaders build roadblocks and seek to impose added and unnecessary regulation – a rather ironic ploy given the anti-regulation mantra many are given to.

It is painfully ironic. It's one thing to cross your arms and refuse to support or celebrate the growth of Solar and wind energy. But to actively oppose these things stinks of intervention by the fossil fuel industry, making it obvious to anybody with half a brain Republicans don't really care about economic growth.

Art Pope's minions now going after bicyclists

Wherever there is a whiff of progress, JLF and Civitas will soon be there to oppose it:

I do not oppose bike lanes in principle. If significant numbers of people wish to travel by bike and need safe lanes, it is reasonable for the city to use part of its transportation budget to meet that need.

But I do oppose social engineering and paternalism. I absolutely object to Raleigh and Wake County using taxpayers’ money to push taxpayers away from one behavior (driving cars) that they prefer and toward a different behavior (riding bikes) that they have not embraced.

Oh! Bonus points for including the trigger words "social engineering" and "paternalism." Seriously, these free-market clones are so predictable I could write for them under a pseudonym and get away with it for months before they figured it out. All you need are a few key phrases and a dash of hyperbole (Raleigh trying to "push" citizens into biking), and you've got Puppet Gold ready to be published.

Drowning in incompetency: Revised coastal floodmaps ignore sea level rise

Science? We don't need no stinking science:

New maps for Dare County will remove thousands of homes and lots from flood zones, creating a need to amend local building codes that until now accounted for more rising water, not less.

In Dare County, according to maps released last month, 15,970 buildings are either removed from a flood zone or placed in a zone where the hazard is reduced. Entire neighborhoods in Nags Head, Kitty Hawk and Kill Devil Hills are suddenly not so prone to water surging into the living room, according to the preliminary maps.

To give you an idea of what's at stake here, here's a Facebook post from a few months ago. Pay attention to the last sentence:

Sunday News: Robin Hood in reverse edition

THE COLD CRUELTY OF NC LEADERS IS TO TAX POOR TO RENDER TO RICH (Raleigh News & Observer column) -- There has been a good deal of confusion on this front as Republican leaders have boasted of massive reductions in taxation – changing the lives and fortunes of everyday Tar Heels. Turns out that’s not exactly right. Three-quarters of the total tax benefit went to the top 20 percent of earners. In 2015, those making less than $20,000 a year paid 9.2 percent of their income in state and local taxes. Those making over $376,000 annually paid 5.3 percent.

Saturday News: McCrory's pity party

From Sporting News: Pat McCrory is a bigot, and that's no PC BS. Credit where it's due: Pat McCrory's dedication to bigotry is impressive. The governor of North Carolina is so far in the tank for a bill that discriminates against his LGBTQ constituents and has cost his state hundreds of millions of dollars that it's almost jealousy-inducing. We should all be so lucky to have something we love as much as Pat McCrory loves putting transgender people in danger.

Sanity prevails. Some die-hard Bernie Sanders delegates from North Carolina have thrown their support to Hillary Clinton. Despite their hopes that Clinton will adopt more of Sanders’ progressive ideas, the prospect of Republican nominee Donald Trump as president is enough to sway some North Carolina delegates traveling to Philadelphia for the Democratic Party convention.

Tweets from State Rep. Chris Sgro: “Just saw @PatMcCroryNC in the hall and told him I'd love a public convo about #hb2. He repeated "publicly?" and laughed out loud. Not joking … .@PatMcCroryNC just shouted at me ‘congrats, you got what you wanted.’ Actually, Governor, we all lost - because of you. #AllStarMove #ncpol”

Find the rest of the news here. It's not too depressing today.

What is the difference between a public servant and a politician?

Sometimes we need to remember that there are men and women of integrity that serve our local communities, state and nation. When our elected officials are discouraged they need to remember those that came before them and set the right example.

"Another friend, former North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Burley Mitchell, said Morgan voted to give the Panama Canal back to Panama in the late 1970s even though he knew it was unpopular back home.

Dan Forest is an embarrassment to NC

Tripling down on McCrory's ignorant attacks on the NBA:

I enjoy the NBA and wanted them to hold the All-Star game in Charlotte but if that game comes with strings attached, strings that would expose women and children to danger, molestation, assault and voyeurism, then no thank you. Take your business elsewhere, and I have no apologies about saying that and never will. The NBA knows the economic hit North Carolina will take from this decision. I wish the NBA would likewise acknowledge the pain, sorrow and devastation a child or woman feels when they are exploited. We will never value a dollar over a woman's or child's safety and security.

Bolding mine. Where do I begin? How about we start with the GOP's refusal to expand Medicaid, leaving half a million NC citizens without medical coverage, many of them women and children. Sorry, costs too much. And then there's slashing environmental protections and dropping the ball on coal ash cleanup. Sorry, costs Duke Energy too much. Oh, and let's not forget, deeply cutting unemployment benefits, literally taking the food off the tables of tens of thousands of women and children. Sorry, it would cost private businesses too much if we made them pay what they should as responsible employers. The list is endless. Wherever a dollar is concerned, women and children must take a back seat to the wealthy who want to buy a bigger boat with their tax cuts.

Friday News: More than just a game


LISTEN TO THE NBA AND THE COACHES: HB2 IS A LOSER (Capitol Broadcasting Co. editorial) -- North Carolina's top three basketball coaches offer sound reasons why HB2 is wrong. The NBA shows the high cost of legalizing discrimination. HB2 needs to be repealed.

NBA MOVING 2017 ALL-STAR GAME OUT OF CHARLOTTE (Charlotte Observer) -- The NBA announced late Thursday afternoon that it is moving the 2017 All-Star Weekend out of Charlotte, in reaction to concerns with the North Carolina law known as House Bill 2.


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