Falling into the HB2 "false equivalency" trap

Starting over from scratch merely promotes discrimination:

Both sides are posturing for the voters instead of doing what's right for the state. And it's getting tiresome. The N.C. Restaurant & Lodging Association has tried to broker a deal, and so has the Charlotte Chamber. Even conservative businessman Art Pope, a powerful Republican financier, has gotten into the act, urging the repeal of both the state law and the city ordinance.

Monday News: Not even one percent


DRUG TESTS DISPEL A MYTH ABOUT N.C.’S POOR (Raleigh News & Observer column) -- The drug-test requirement for those receiving government assistance illustrates a peculiar world view found among many conservatives. They think the poor are often poor because they don’t want to work. Instead, they enjoy a comfortable life on the couch, taking drugs and watching a big-screen TV, thanks to the benefits of subsidized housing, food stamps and welfare. Call it life in the lap of poverty. But the drug-test results told a different story. After more than a year of delays, the state began in August to screen applicants to the state’s Work First program, a program that provides cash benefits, job training and help finding work. About 7,600 Work First applicants were screened, and the positive tests are only 0.3 percent of those screened.

The Voter Fraud lie: Are we really this gullible?

The death of reason:

How does a lie come to be widely taken as the truth? The answer is disturbingly simple: Repeat it over and over again. When faced with facts that contradict the lie, repeat it louder.

Last week, a Washington Post-ABC News poll found that nearly half of registered American voters believe that voter fraud occurs "somewhat" or "very" often. That astonishing number includes two-thirds of people who say they're voting for Donald Trump and a little more than one-quarter of Hillary Clinton supporters. The Republican Party standard-bearer has elevated the lie about voting fraud and "rigged elections" to a centerpiece of his campaign. Another 26 percent of American voters said that fraud "rarely" occurs, but even that characterization is off the mark. Just 1 percent of respondents gave the answer that comes closest to reflecting reality: "Never."

Let those numbers sink in for a moment, and the next time you ask yourself, "How can people keep denying climate change" or "Why aren't people more upset about sexual assault" or any number of other issues our society refuses to deal with, you might already have the answer: We are idiots who have lost the ability to discern between truth and fiction.

Sunday News: Of course he has


BURR HAS BACKED REINING IN WATCHDOG AGENCY BEHIND WELLS FARGO FINE (Winston-Salem Journal) -- U.S. Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., has supported a sustained Republican effort to control the purse strings of the federal consumer watchdog agency that recently fined Wells Fargo $100 million, an effort that law experts say would allow Congress to weaken the agency. The watchdog agency, known as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, or CFPB, was formed primarily on Democratic support under the sweeping Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act in response to the real-estate and financial-sector meltdowns of 2008.

NC throwback: Voting under a Confederate flag

Fighting a war that was lost 150 years ago:

"I said 'I don't care what they do every other day of the year, but when we vote, that shouldn’t be there'," Hudson said. "I find it to be very intimidating. To me, it’s saying we really don't want you coming in here. It is a form of intimidation, any way you look at it. And you know in a sense – it kind of intimidated me."

Meanwhile, since the June primary, local election officials asked the volunteer firefighter organization to take down the flag for the election this fall. They refused. So the county pursued a second polling location at the Uwharrie Community Building. That didn’t work out either.

Among many other troubling aspects, this issue exposes the hazards of performing a government-sanctioned function (voting) on private property. Not unlike having voting precincts in churches, there can be an element of intimidation, a feeling of "I don't belong here" from those of a different denomination (or religion) being forced to cross the threshold to exercise their Constitutional right to vote. And in the case of this fire station, it may be privately-owned, but a lot of taxpayer dollars have flowed into it:

Saturday News: Because "off sides" and homicides are the same thing


MCCRORY COMPARES FOOTBALL REPLAYS TO KEITH SCOTT SHOOTING VIDEOS (Global News) – Gov. Pat McCrory likened the multiple videos showing the fatal police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott in Charlotte to watching football replays on TV. Scott was shot dead by police Tuesday, sparking protests for three days straight. “I hope you don’t take this in the wrong vein, but I watched a football game last week on TV and watched four different replays and each showed something different."

Speaker Moore and the HB2 vanishing coin trick

Playing childish games with civil rights:

When House Speaker Tim Moore wanted the city of Charlotte leaders to compromise to get HB2 repealed, he took a different tact. Moore, R-Cleveland, made them an offer they couldn’t accept.

Moore demands the Charlotte City Council first repeal its non-discrimination ordinance “unconditionally.” After that happens, he MIGHT see IF there’s support among the Republicans in the legislature to “maybe taking a look to find other ways to see if we could, you know, support and make sure there were basic protections, you know, when it comes to restrooms, changing facilities, showers, etc.” Moore stressed that the legislature hadn’t “taken a formal position … because we were waiting to see if Charlotte‘s going to move.”

Frankly, I'm glad BergerMoore took such a ham-handed approach to this "deal" of theirs, because it proved their insincerity and kept the Charlotte City Council from making (IMO) a huge mistake. That being said, way too many people are buying into their narrative that Charlotte (and Roy Cooper, and Barack Obama, and Hillary Clinton) are to blame for the continued crisis. And until the voting populace at large are made aware of the scheming, unethical behavior of the GOP leadership, we will continue to be subject to their machinations.

Friday News: Pittenger's true colors

PITTENGER: PROTESTERS ‘HATE WHITE PEOPLE’ (BBC) -- Republican Congressman Robert Pittenger from North Carolina says the US welfare system is to blame for protests over alleged police brutality. He was speaking to BBC Newsnight. “The grievance in their minds – the animus, the anger – they hate white people because white people are successful and they’re not.”

PITTENGER SAYS CHARLOTTE PROTESTERS 'HATE WHITE PEOPLE' (AP) -- A Republican congressman who represents the Charlotte area said Thursday that people are protesting in the city because they "hate white people."

Polling the purple state of North Carolina

Burr and McCrory may be in trouble:

The presidential contest might be the least of the Republican Party’s worries in this rapidly changing state. The embattled Republican governor, Pat McCrory, trails by eight points against Attorney General Roy Cooper, 50 percent to 42 percent.

And even Senator Richard Burr, who was not thought to be in great jeopardy just a few months ago, trails his Democratic challenger, Deborah Ross, by four points, 46-42. That contest is among the handful that seem likely to decide control of the Senate.

Of course, "actual" turnout is critical this year, but thanks in part to the media exposure of Republican voter suppression tactics being challenged by the courts and the people, we may see some record numbers. And regardless of recent findings that HB2 has not made a significant impact on NC's economic revenues, it will still play a role in this election:


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