Navy grasping at straws

From the Perquimans Weekly April 4, 2007, "Navy:NC OLF is need{ed}" Margret Fisher

US Navy officials say they need an outlying landing field and they need it in North Carolina-ideally halfway between NAS Oceana in Virginia Beach and MCAS Cherry Point in Havelock.

And the reason why they say then need an OLF-although they have one in Chesapeake, VA- is because of increased need for training during surge operations. During those times, there could be as many as five carriers with jets vying for practice time at Fentress, as well as at an alternative OLF site.

Just how often does that happen? Ted Brown, US Fleet Forces Command spokesman for the Navy, said that the Navy has had surge operations "a couple of times" since the Department of Homeland Security was set up nearly five years ago. After the terrorism attack on the twin towers...the Navy had to increase its capabilities in training and readiness, Brown said. More carriers than previously required have to be ready to go within 30 days, and carriers in the Pacific may be relocated to the Atlantic, if necessary, he said.

Live-blogging Friday morning

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Don't forget to join us tomorrow morning for a lively discussion with Tim Toben, a good friend and one of North Carolina's most dedicated environmentalists. He'll be on no later than 8 am for sure, maybe earlier, and will stick around for a half hour.

If you're at all interested in green building, North Carolina energy policy, the Edwards' positions on energy and climate change, co-op gardens, conservation, and "acting locally," then this discussion is for you.

You can find out more about Tim, here, and you can include your questions below to get the ball rolling.

Farmers driving tractors convoy to landing field hearing

In the first article I have seen in the Ironically-Named Citizen Times, in the business section(?) is this by the AP.

AP Article

Farmers driving tractors convoy to landing field hearing

A convoy of tractors, planters and pickup trucks drove several miles to the meeting site near town. People placed anti-landing field signs on the vehicles, and onlookers – some of whom had their own signs – cheered and waved.

"We're here to tell the Navy one more time they're not going to get our property," said Beaufort County resident Ronnie Askew, who drove his John Deere.


Doris Morris, a spokeswoman for North Carolinians Opposed to the Outlying Landing Field, said she hopes the local grass-roots effort will make a difference. "It's just amazing what we accomplished with our few dollars when the Navy spent millions to fight against us," she said

NC-08: Larry Kissell Live, 2008 Kick-Off Tour!

This is it. Your invitation to join us in North Carolina (or at least live on-line) for the kick-off of what some are calling the most exciting 2008 rematch from last cycle.

As you know, just after coming up only 330 votes short of victory, I announced an immediate challenge to Robin Hayes for 2008. What you may not know, however, is just how far we've come in the short time since then. Last month, not only was I invited to speak to the Democratic caucus in DC, but our good friend Congressman Artur Davis, DCCC Recruitment Chair, came back to North Carolina with me to personally endorse my candidacy and address the amazing Young Democrats of North Carolina that did so much for my friend Congressman Heath Shuler last time.

Saving Democracy or What Has the Electoral College Done for You Lately?

How's that for a catchy title?

Interesting opposing viewpoints in The Charlotte Observer this morning.

EJ Dionne proposes saving Democracy by doing away with the Electoral College. He starts:

"The individual citizen has no federal constitutional right to vote for electors for the president of the United States."

That is not some reactionary piece of propaganda denying your right to choose the next president. It is one of the more memorable sentences from the Supreme Court's decision in Bush v. Gore, the 2000 case that put the current occupant in the White House for his first term.

Another woman

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Since we're winding down from a most excellent day of Women on Wednesday at BlueNC, I thought I'd point you in the direction of a new progressive blogger over at Progressive Pulse. Her name is Andrea Verykoukis, and she has a fine way with words. (I also admire her disdain for the so-called North Carolina Education Lottery.)

I owe you an apology, dear readers. Last week in my, perhaps undue but definitely indecorous, haste to work "booger-eating moron" into the policy discussion we're having here (did it again!), I neglected to celebrate the first birthday of North Carolina's Education Lottery. Yes, that esteemed institution that has already led to the criminal convictions of three people, has turned one. Baby's all growed up. But not as much as we were promised. The projected $1.2 billion in sales was actually $895 million and education programs are going to get about $70 million less than they thought. Old news, you say, but it bears mentioning as the governor's proposed shifting prize and education percentages to beef up lottery revenue.

Margaret Johnson, Walking the Talk

Today's live blog with Margaret Johnson has been postponed. But we do plan to reschedule.

In 2006, Polk County elected the first Democrats to the county commission in 12 years, the first Democratic sheriff in 8 years. Just as impressive, they turned around 700-vote deficit in their 2004 congressional race to a 1200-vote margin of victory.

County Democratic Party Chair Margaret Johnson attributes the turnaround to "walking the talk about what it means to be a democrat." She says, "Our party is becoming not just about elections but about our community. And we are doing good in our community. We are making a difference." Current community activities include road-side pick-ups, services for the needy, and fund-raising walks for conservation. "Even Republicans come up to me and say I may not agree with your politics but I sure like what you're doing."


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