Submitted by teddyrooseveltp... on Mon, 04/14/2014 - 7:25am
A statue depicting Jesus as a homeless person sleeping on a bench recently installed at St. Alban’s Episcopal Church in Davidson, NC prompted a call to police, with a woman in the upscale neighborhood concerned for the safety of her neighbors.
The statue was purchased by a church member for $22,000 as a memorial to a former parishioner, Kate McIntyre, who had loved public art.
The statue had previously been turned down by St. Michael’s Cathedral in Toronto and St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York.
Not everyone in the neighborhood is enamored with the work of art, with Swannock saying, “Jesus is not a vagrant, Jesus is not a helpless person who needs our help. We need someone who is capable of meeting our needs, not someone who is also needy.”
Others, such as Ellen Donaldson, say that the statue gives her peace.
One of North Carolina's great treasures is its system of state parks. Jane and I have been visiting many of them, and this weekend we had the pleasure of spending two days camping at Medoc Mountain State Park in Halifax County. It's a sweet place with five great loop hikes, and spring was definitely in the air. Here's what Wikipedia has to say about the park:
Medoc Mountain is not really a mountain at all; its highest point reaches an elevation of only 325 feet (99 m) above sea level. It is, rather, the core of what was once a mighty range of mountains — Medoc Mountain is what remains after millions of years of erosion. The eroded peaks were formed by volcanic action during the Paleozoic Age, about 350 million years ago.
The park sits near the fall line, an area where the hard, resistant rocks of the foothills give way to the softer rocks and sediments of the coastal plain. The northern and western faces of Medoc Mountain have very steep slopes, dropping 160 feet over a distance of less than a quarter mile. Such rugged terrain is unusual for the eastern piedmont.
As much as I love the 50 children I’ve been privileged to love, teach and laugh with, I’m leaving. I can’t afford to stay any longer. Every month when I’m paid, my paycheck is spent within an hour. Between my rent, my car payments, loans and paying my credit card off from the previous month’s expenses, I have nothing left.
I can assure you I don’t make enough money to live lavishly. Dinner time at my house is often brown rice and Diet Coke. Just for fun one day, I added all the hours I work (about a third of them completely unpaid yet necessary), and averaged my salary per hour. I made more money per hour while working at a magazine in college.
On the plus side, since you can't afford to go out and eat dinner in a restaurant, that gives you more time to grade papers and prepare class assignments for the following days. Inappropriate jokes aside, we can't continue to presume that good teachers will "stick with it" and remain in their classrooms due to some noble calling. Nobility can't survive on an empty stomach, and it's hard to grade papers at night if your house is foreclosed on and you're living in your car.
Gene Nichol is now required to warn UNC and add a disclaimer any time he writes something for publication.
Printed under the column were [Nichol's] name, his title as the Boyd Tinsley Distinguished Professor and this statement: “He doesn’t speak for UNC.”
Since late October, the disclaimer has appeared whenever Nichol, a provocative and prolific writer, pens a piece for the newspaper’s opinion pages.
According to email records obtained by the N&O, Nichol, a former dean and college president and well-known liberal, has also been asked by his bosses to give them a day or two days’ notice – a “heads up” before his columns appear
That's because Nichol speaks truth that the powerful don't want to hear. And some of the powerful react with indignation.
Submitted by Betsy Muse on Sat, 04/12/2014 - 6:33pm
In 2013 three men from Florida, California, and Virginia with ties to the taxicab and parking industries made $24,000 in donations to Charlotte City Council Mayor Pro Tem Michael Barnes and $24,000 to former Charlotte Mayor Patrick Cannon. One of the men, William H. Bodenhamer, Jr. is an executive with Standard Parking (SP+), which had bid on a large airport-related contract that was voted on by the Charlotte City Council in early 2014. All three men are part owners of NBRS USA Holdings, which owns Yellow Cab in Charlotte. Yellow Cab was one of three taxicab companies selected to work out of the Charlotte Airport in 2011 in a controversial decision.
Outside experts found no evidence to support public claims about widespread low literacy levels of a group of first-year University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill student-athletes who had been screened for possible learning differences or learning disabilities between 2004 and 2012. Since January, those claims were widely reported in news media accounts and via social media.
According to an executive summary, the outside experts “also determined that the majority of the students referenced in the public claims scored at or above college entry level on the SATA Reading Vocabulary subtest. The data set was based on those scores.”
I've read the three outside reports and, although there was quite a bit of dithering about the quality of the SATA test itself, it does appear that earlier reports were incorrect. That said, I find it extremely ironic that UNC is happy with and touting studies they would have been embarrassed to acknowledge before:
While average income has returned to prerecession levels, income gains have been distributed unevenly across income quintiles. (Income quintiles are five equally sized groups of households that have been divided from lowest to highest according to their annual income.) Between 2008 and 2012, the highest income quintile accounted for more than 80 percent of the total increase in household income in the United States. The fourth income quintile also experienced a significant gain between 2008 and 2012, while the lowest, second, and third income quintiles experienced essentially no change in income.
There's news this week that the slum-retailing business is beginning to crumble under the weight of its own greed. It's a sad story all around, and it's also the natural conclusion of a business model that depends on exploiting poor people.
Though Art Pope would disagree, he and his fellow slumlords have been working to decimate the middle class and to ensure that poor people stay that way. As it turns out, they've been cannibalizing their own customer base to the point that their customers can no longer afford even the cheap crap they sell.
"... the retailer’s core customers – which it defines as female heads of household making less than $40,000 a year – are still pressured by a weak economy that has left many low-income workers struggling. Cuts to federal food stamp benefits have also hurt Family Dollar, Levine said.
Mother Jones is on a roll, this week taking Little Tommy Tillis to task for being ... well ... the arrogant, patronizing jerk that he actually is. Go see the story, and then listen to this amazing video.
This is the real Thom Tillis and, oh my goodness, he is one ugly son of a bitch.
Submitted by teddyrooseveltp... on Fri, 04/11/2014 - 9:24am
Public Policy Polling is out with the latest numbers of our esteemed Governor McCrony. His numbers are holding steady at a 45% disapproval/40% approval rate, unchanged from a month ago. PPP says Pat's approval ratings have been "under water" for 10 months.
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