Are they lying?

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Lately I've been wondering how groups of people on different sides of issues can come to such dramatically different conclusions about the direction of public policy. In many cases, those differences appear to be grounded in honest disagreements. That's how I see the abortion issue, for example, where personal beliefs dominate the political landscape like so many hair-trigger land mines.

In other areas, the differences seem more rooted in deep philosophical divisions where honesty gets caught in the cross fire. That's what's happening in the continuing debate about global climate change, where free-market fundamentalists looking for free-market solutions are cooking the scientific books in pursuit of an ideological agenda. We need look no farther than the Journal of the John Locke Puppetshow to see the phenomenon in action. Today's edition features an ad for another seedy little free-market tank called the Heartland Institute.

The Great Banking Scam, brought to you by our Democratic Congress

The more I learn about how the banking industry is screwing taxpayers by siphoning off TARP funds, the madder I get. For example, we discovered today that more than $1.6 billion of those funds have gone to executive compensation at major financial institutions. It is truly mind-boggling that this crappy legislation was rammed through Congress by a Democratic majority earlier this year.

Offshore drilling charade: you can play too!

Under the Dome (thank you) reports today that the deadline is being extended for public comment on Virginia's plans to exploit the continental shelf for oil, part of the Big Energy Get Richer scheme that will have the added benefit of accelerating global climate change.

Eyeblink

Occasionally when I can't get started on something I HAVE to write, I will just start writing something else and let the process work itself out until words are flowing readily, even for the tedious writing someone is paying me to do. Last night I did that, while thinking of the family Christmas party I was not attending, and I came up with the passage below. Not sure if it's poetry or prose. Maybe it's not either, but I thought it worth posting and inviting comment on. You can comment on my writing, or on the subject matter, or on your own experiences. Feel free.

See below the fold...

Buying influence cheap?

O-No! today wraps up yet another sorry saga of abuse of power by nasty little men here in North Carolina. This particular story chronicles the mind-boggling reign of one Eddie Carroll Thomas.

Thomas had "long-standing and widespread" influence over personnel decisions in one of the state Division of Motor Vehicles' largest sections -- Driver and Vehicle Services.

The shortest day

The tubes today are bristling with seasonal commentary. As real news slows to a trickle, writers everywhere turn their words toward the holidaze, the season that brings us the shortest day of the year. No longer in touch with planetary time, many of us slip past the winter solstice with barely a nod. Eyes set on the Christian replacement five days later, we are well armed with electricity and candles, having no need to fear this darkest and longest of nights.

North Carolina Voters Really don't like Elizabeth Dole

Public Policy Polling posted poll results last week showing that Elizabeth Dole's popularity continues to dwindle. I'm usually not one to rub salt in wounds, but I have such strong negative feelings for Elizabeth Dole I simply can't resist doing it just this once. Even Republicans are souring on the old carpetbagger.

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