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Hard-charging prosecutor, or serial killer?

The preponderance of evidence points to the latter:

During Britt’s tenure, the report found, a defendant in Robeson County was almost 100 times more likely to be sentenced to death than a randomly selected murder defendant in the United States. At one point, one of every 25 people on death row in the United States had been prosecuted by Britt.

Britt often cut corners to win. Appellate courts found that Britt committed misconduct in 14 of his capital cases, the new report shows. His offenses included hiding evidence that might have proven defendants innocent and making inflammatory and improper statements to jurors.

And yet, with all the evidence compiled against this man, he never spent one minute behind bars for his crimes against humanity. Here was an opportunity to forward the cause of justice, by punishing blatant prosecutorial misconduct, but we flinched. Whether it was "maintaining decorum" or actual complicity in his crimes, it doesn't really matter. The injustice stands, and (to a certain extent) survives, in the hearts and minds of many doing that job today.

The archetype of bad McCrory hires: Todd Chasteen for state Board of Education

Protégé of Franklin Graham is the last person who should be nominated:

“We should reject Governor McCrory’s recent nomination of Wataugan J. Todd Chasteen to the North Carolina Board of Education,” said Appalachian State University English professor Craig Fischer at a public forum at the university earlier this week, objecting to Chasteen’s lack of experience in public education.

“Chasteen sided with would-be censors during last year’s battle over keeping Isabel Allende’s The House of the Spirits in the sophomore English Honors curriculum at Watauga High,” Fischer added. “He spoke on behalf of banning the book at a February 10, 2014 school board local forum about the controversy, claiming–inaccurately–that Allende’s book is full of ‘deviancy’ and child pornography.”

I'm not sure how deeply the (state) Board of Education is involved in setting curricula or reading materials for schools state-wide, but this guy has no business making any of those choices. What little experience he has is steeped in religious doctrine:

Friday News: Time to go back to a Blue NC

N.C.’S IN PLAY? RED STATE JUST MIGHT BE UP FOR GRABS (Salon) -- The only way the GOP could have screwed it up for this year’s presidential nominee is likely to do exactly what it has done: Overreach. After a couple of years of quietly gutting state services and turning the state university system over to a George W. Bush flunky in a political appointment so transparent it would have embarrassed a banana republic strongman, the legislature and Gov. Pat McCrory finally went too far with the passage and signing of HB2.
http://www.salon.com/2016/07/01/north_carolinas_in_play_the_red_state_just_might_be_up_for_grabs_in_...

Control of NC courts

In an attempt to further gerrymander elections for our Court of Appeals, SB 667 has suddenly appeared.

Candidates registered with political parties that reflect at least five percent (5%) of statewide voter registration, according to the most recent statistical report published by the State Board of Elections, in alphabetical order by party beginning with the party whose nominee for Governor received the most votes in the most recent gubernatorial election and in alphabetical order within the party.

John Hood's "cheerleading" glosses over uncounted suffering

Lost somewhere between fluff and nonsense:

The General Assembly’s latest contribution to that effort, a 2016-17 state budget, will continue to make North Carolina a national leader in conservative reform. It cuts taxes for virtually all households, saves nearly half a billion dollars more in the state’s rainy-day fund, and offsets new spending on high priorities such as teacher pay and law enforcement with cuts and economies elsewhere in the budget. It also advances core conservative ideas such as school choice, innovation, competition, and pay for performance.

Bolding mine. The only thing true Libertarians hate more than tax-and-spend is to dedicate taxpayer dollars to build up huge (government-controlled) reserves. That's a half-billion dollars that should have remained in the pockets of those individuals John Hood says are the best ones to decide its use. That "rainy-day fund" also exposes one of the GOP's biggest weaknesses, the ability to estimate/predict costs on an annual basis. Every year since they've taken over, huge budget inconsistencies have emerged, with massive shortages and magical surpluses appearing and disappearing. The sheer incompetence boggles the mind. If that happened in the private sector, the entire accounting department would be fired, and there'd likely be some embezzling indictments to follow that. Back to the huge mound of BS:

More on the great GOP tax-cutting myth

When the GOP talks about cutting taxes, remember this: Most people in our state will face an increase of more than 100% in fees related to owning a car. And just how many cars are there in North Carolina? Nearly 8 million.

That means our citizens are collectively paying around $360,000,000 in new taxes every year. Thanks McCrory!

This analysis is based on this post by Rip Arrowood that I found on Facebook:

2015 NC DMV registration fee.....$28.00
2016 NC DMV registration fee.....$66.00

Achievement School District bill heads to McCrory

charterpirates.jpg

State-sponsored piracy of public schools:

The House passed the Senate version of a bill Wednesday to create a five-school Achievement School District pilot program for schools that have shown consistently poor growth and performance.

A State Board of Education-appointed superintendent could choose charter companies with proven success to run the schools. The companies would have hiring and firing powers and would be exempt from oversight and evaluations from local school boards.

There are numerous faulty assumptions built into this bill, not the least of which is the idea that removing a critical oversight mechanism (local school boards) will somehow encourage performance. And considering these boards are comprised of locally-elected officials, it actually takes away parental control. But in the minds of Republicans, ideology trumps logic every time.

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