There's a reason they call Pat McCrory the King of Coal Ash. He loves the stuff and is doing everything he can to protect Duke Energy's interests as the ash-pond debacle plays out. So instead of choosing the right thing (moving coal ash dumps away from rivers), he's developing a complex scheme to get away with doing the wrong thing (leaving it where it is).
Plus, watch out. When a greeder like John Skvarla uses his bully pulpit to call a citizen "sophomoric," you can be sure some good old-fashioned f*ck-you customer service won't be far behind.
Commissioners Nathan Miller, David Blust, and Perry Yates trotted out their lists of past beefs with Boone, their grievances, their grudges going back decades in some cases, but they readily admitted that their self-righteous spite sprang mainly from the on-going feud Mr. Yates's daddy-in-law Phil Templeton has with anybody and everybody who won't let him do precisely as he wishes as a millionaire land developer.
Last night, Mayor Ball asked Commission Chair Nathan Miller if he thought it was fair that Boone raise 60% of the revenue and get 12% of it in return. You could see the ire rise in Miller. It's plenty fair, he replied with noticeable venom.
Another factor which must have played a role in this decision: Boone had the audacity to elect a dynamic and outspoken YDNC leader as Mayor. Local Republicans might not fear the influence of local Democrats too much, but they do fear what Andy Ball represents; smart, young, Progressive Democrats, who have the vision to see what the future could be, and the intelligence and drive to explain it to others. The only way to fight it is to stack the deck against the new Mayor, and hope his popularity collapses. And if the people of Boone have to suffer as a consequence, it's their own fault for wanting progress.
The Racial Justice Act went to the Supreme Court this week. Now, the state’s highest court must decide how North Carolina should deal with troubling revelations of racial bias in capital trials.
The oral arguments Monday were about four defendants who have been resentenced to life in prison without parole after a Superior Court judge found “a wealth of evidence showing the persistent, pervasive, and distorting role of race in jury selection throughout North Carolina,” as well as in their individual cases.
However, the larger issue is this: As a result of the Racial Justice Act, a comprehensive study found that African-Americans are being systematically denied the right to serve on capital juries. A qualified black juror in North Carolina is more than twice as likely as a white juror to be removed with a peremptory strike.
On Sunday, though, the official Twitter account of North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory tweeted with pride that the patches on the green jackets were made in the Tar Heel State – and made double-bogey in the process.
“Great to see the patches on the infamous green jackets at @The_Masters are made in Weaverville, NC!” McCrory’s account tweeted.
But the green jackets aren’t exactly infamous – infamous, according to Merriam-Webster, means, “having a reputation of the worst kind; notoriously evil.”
This was not a typo. Apparently whoever wrote this Tweet was under the impression that "infamous" meant "really famous," something a 3rd grader might get confused, if he or she had been avoiding homework.
Submitted by teddyrooseveltp... on Tue, 04/15/2014 - 7:26pm
Art Pope, NC's Budget Director and purchaser of elections, editorializes in the latest News and Observer on how NC's tax reforms are a "benefit to working families".
We'll make a few observations and, first off, thank the News and Observer for publishing an editorial from the "horse's mouth", rather than one of the usual surrogates from Pope's Civitas or Locke Foundation stinktanks. However, we did notice this little tagline at the end of the PopeEd:
Art Pope is the state budget director and a former member of the N.C. House of Representatives.
Funny ... I didn't notice any disclaimer on Pope's piece, noting that he didn't speak for our state government, like other state employees have to do. Did Pope have to clear the op-ed with his boss like these other employees?
Well, let's see what the Popester has to say about tax reform:
Conservatives are using the April 15 deadline to celebrate tax changes that North Carolina lawmakers argue will keep more money in family wallets and encourage job creation.
Gov. Pat McCrory and key legislators plan to join right-leaning policy groups Tuesday for a tax-filing day news conference in Raleigh. They plan to highlight a new annual report from the American Legislative Exchange Council to promote the tax overhaul law.
And now would be a really good time for some of our larger news outlets to do an in-depth evaluation of how ALEC operates, including how corporations take a direct hand in the crafting of legislation that is subsequently and stealthily inserted into our "public" policy system. In the absence of that explanation to the people, reporting on state government is woefully incomplete.
Submitted by Betsy Muse on Mon, 04/14/2014 - 9:05pm
Two major Duke Energy shareholders are urging other investors to vote out the directors in charge of the company's environmental, safety, and health compliance.
The California Public Employees’ Retirement System and the New York City Pension Funds wrote fellow shareholders Monday. They asked that shareholders not re-elect four members of the Duke board’s regulatory policy and operations committee at the May 1 annual meeting.
The letter cites the Feb. 2 ash spill into the Dan River, saying Duke had “forewarning of the public risk” from environmental groups that had intended to sue Duke over ash contamination.
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