WaPo pimps for Pat

The Washington Post today printed Novak's inaccurate account of earmark history, promoting our own hypocrite Pat McHenry as a martyred hero of the fight for transparency.

The formerly respected media outlet then posted an astonishingly vapid interview. Who's paying them to print such crap? Or is their reputation so shot, they don't need a high price to make up for the nonexistent loss of integrity?

Open thread: 10 (politically incorrect) truths about human nature

Some interesting reading from Psychology Today.

1. Men like blond bombshells (and women want to look like them)
2. Humans are naturally polygamous
3. Most women benefit from polygyny, while most men benefit from monogamy
4. Most suicide bombers are Muslim
5. Having sons reduces the likelihood of divorce
6. Beautiful people have more daughters
7. What Bill Gates and Paul McCartney have in common with criminals
8. The midlife crisis is a myth—sort of
9. It's natural for politicians to risk everything for an affair (only if they're male)
10. Men sexually harass women because they are not sexist

Wonder if David Almond and Hairdresser Joe will use all this in their defense?

Live blogging this Friday: Tom Jensen

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I'm excited to announce that Tom Jensen will be joining us for live-blogging this Friday at 9. You may have seen Tom's name in "who's online" at BlueNC, but there's a lot more behind that name - and it's all inspiring.

Tom graduated from UNC last spring. During his stay there, he served as the statewide College Democrats President. After college he went on to manage the Superior Court campaign for Adam Stein, and began writing a weekly column about state and local politics for the Chapel Hill Herald. Last fall, he started working as the head of the 'Cool Cities' campaign for the North Carolina Sierra Club. When he began work in November there were 5 Cool Cities in North Carolina. Now there are 19. Tom also instituted the Sierra Club blog.

I hope you'll join Tom on Friday morning . . . and I hope you'll bring lots of good questions. Cheers!

Goveror Easley: The Ball’s In Your Court

Dear Governor Easley,

In less than 18 months, you’ll leave the Governor’s mansion behind. Whether you return to private life or move on to higher elected office, your tenure as Governor will be over. Which means you don’t have a lot of time to do the single most important thing that North Carolina needs from you: take the lead on health care for all.

Tick Tock

Today is the due date for the NC Association of Realtors to file a "Principal Report" for lobbying expenses with the Secretary of State's Office. NCAR last week reported pumping $380,162 into its 527 committee, "North Carolina Homeowners Alliance" (sic).

In 2002 The North Carolina Association of Realtor (NCAR) reported over 26,000 members. That grew in 2007 to a claimed membership of over 42,000, a growth rate of 10% per year (30% increase in last two years).

Hey, guess what? Brad Paisley's coming to North Carolina. He'll be in Raleigh July 20 and Charlotte July 21 and he'll be checking you for Ticks:
Brad Paisley: Click for "Ticks"

It is clear that the large sums of money involved in real estate transactions are attracting a lot of people to the business. Individual realtors may be seeing a decline in income because there is more competition. More competition has not led to a substantial lowering of cost for consumers because of NCAR’s strong hold on the market and, it seems, on legislators.

[Read more below the fold.....]

Bowles to Lottery: Keep your blood money

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One of my favorite topics is back in the news, this time because of the good judgment of Erskine Bowles, president of the UNC system. Bowles has personally decreed that advertisements for the lottery have no place in sports events held by public universities. The N&O editorializes today on the subject.

Erskine Bowles, president of the University of North Carolina system, has done well to say so. He's also taken a position unlikely to win him friends in the Governor's Office, where the lottery is viewed as a wonderful benefit to North Carolina. And it's true that the university system benefits from lottery money.

But Bowles got to the heart of the issue when he said, "While it is legal for our students who are 18 or older to participate in the lottery, the lottery is nonetheless a form of gambling, and I feel strongly that we should not encourage gambling by our students." Amen, Brother Bowles.

Land for Tomorrow

The loss of natural area, open space, and farm land does more harm than just the loss of rural atmosphere and scenic area. The development brings about more traffic, which eventually brings about more road construction, more stop lights, etc. The development is a major cause of the overcrowding of schools. landfortomorrow.org is one organization fighting for bonds to protect our land.

Why I like Grier . . . and why he's the ideal challenger to Liddy Dole

UPDATE: Please read this post by PhoenixDem too.

Brandon Friedman delivered today's response to The Decider's weekly radio address. Friedman is a former infantry officer in the U.S. Army's 101st Airborne Division, and veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In the address, Friedman urges President Bush and Senate Republicans to vote with the Democratic majority to responsibly redeploy our troops from Iraq. Especially in light of the fact that the war has kept us from devoting resources needed to fight terrorists and the escalation of the Iraq war is failing, Friedman called on Republicans in Congress and those in their party running for President to support changing the mission in Iraq.

You can read his remarks here. But more important, this guy could have said the exact same things as Mr. Friedman, with equal conviction and impact.

Make no mistake. The future of our Republic will be on the line in 2008. Unless the Democrats can get a bigger majority in the US Senate, it really doesn't matter what else happens. Sure, a Democratic president would be a huge relief, but an obstructionist Republican minority in the Senate would keep too many of Bush's disastrous policies in place.

The 2008 election will be another referendum on the Iraq war and on the Bushbots who have perpetuated that disaster. The election will determine the course of action required to bolster our security and restore our reputation in the world. Liddy Dole will be a giant obstacle to that kind of progress, and someone needs to take her out.

That someone should be Grier Martin.

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