Thursday News: Musical chairs

trumpshithole.jpg

TRUMP FIRES VA SECRETARY, TEMPORARILY REPLACING HIM WITH NC GOP POLITICAL FLUNKIE: President Donald Trump fired VA Secretary David Shulkin on Wednesday and chose a former aide to Jesse Helms and Thom Tillis to fill the job in an interim role. Trump tapped Robert Wilkie to be the interim secretary of Veterans Affairs while nominating his personal physician Ronny L. Jackson for the permanent post. Wilkie is a Capitol Hill veteran, having worked for then-Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott from 1997 to 2003. He was executive director of the North Carolina Republican Party before going to work for Lott. Wilkie also served as an aide to Helms, the late North Carolina senator, and former U.S. Rep. David Funderburk. Wilkie unsuccessfully ran for the Republican nomination in the 7th Congressional District in 1996.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/politics-columns-blogs/under-the-dome/article20...

Why can't we register to vote online in NC?

Only 12 states in the US do not have online voter registration. The other 38 make it easy and convenient for people to register to vote. Why is that? Could it be because the Republicans who control the General Assembly don't want the masses showing up at the polls? In today's connected world, there's no good excuse for this kind of backward policy. We buy guns online. We buy drugs online. We pay taxes online. Why can't we register to vote online?

Dear NCDP: Win the suburbs, win the state

Because that is where 2018's biggest battles will be fought:

In Illinois primary elections on Tuesday, the five counties that wrap around Chicago's Cook County saw Democrats cast almost five times as many ballots as they did four years ago, ahead of a midterm romp for the GOP. Republicans, meanwhile, saw their turnout drop by almost a quarter of what it was in 2014.

The national Republican money machine is focusing heavily on defending the suburbs. The Congressional Leadership Fund, a political action committee aligned with Speaker Paul Ryan, has opened field offices in 30 Republican-held districts, with plans eventually to spend more than $100 million in as many as three dozen.

If you look at the graph above, you will see Republicans took 64% of the suburban vote in North Carolina in 2016. They actually did better in the suburbs than rural areas, which should freak you out more than a little, frankly. Why? Because suburban voters have a (much) higher percentage of college graduates than their rural counterparts. And yet, they voted for a card-carrying idiot for President. We're seeing a big shift in suburban voting nationwide during these special elections, but we can't assume that will happen here, in the absence of a huge effort by Dems to retake *our* suburbs. The thing to keep in mind, and I don't want to come off as too elitist here: The higher education level of the suburbs also means having information presented to them in a tactful manner may generate more (and better) results than those efforts would elsewhere. They have the background to make the right decisions, but they need a little push to do so.

Wednesday News: Chickenhawks of a feather

bluenccup-1[1].jpg

BOLTON USED CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA TO TARGET VOTERS FOR THOM TILLIS: New National Security Adviser John Bolton's super-PAC worked with British data mining firm Cambridge Analytica on targeted ads supporting Republican Thom Tillis in his 2014 U.S. Senate campaign. Cambridge Analytica, which has been roundly criticized for its unauthorized use of personal data of some 50 million Facebook users, designed five versions of the same ad featuring Bolton that tailored toward different personality types. The ads ran on satellite television providers, which have the technology to allow advertisers to target individual subscribers. Cambridge Analytica then used its psychographic profiling to decide which ad should go to a given viewer. More optimistic, agreeable people saw a more upbeat version of the ad, while more fearful people were shown a more frightening version.
http://www.wral.com/bolton-s-super-pac-cambridge-analytica-teamed-up-on-pro-tillis-ads-in-2014/17446...

Poor Dallas. He can't find the contract he signed for illegal electioneering.

Tuesday News: Filed under, "Well, duh"

pregnantinmate.jpg

PREGNANT INMATES TO BE UNSHACKLED DURING DELIVERY: North Carolina prisons no longer will permit the use of leg or waist restraints on pregnant inmates after a recent complaint that two women were shackled to a hospital bed while in labor. Kenneth Lassiter, the prisons director, signed a new policy on Monday, nearly two months after SisterSong, an Atlanta-based organization that promotes reproductive rights for women of color, and groups from North Carolina sent a letter to the state Department of Public Safety questioning the treatment of the two unnamed inmates. The focus on North Carolina comes as part of a global movement in recent years to end the shackling of pregnant prisoners and offer better treatment in general to female inmates. More than 20 states have passed laws that prohibit the shackling of people in childbirth, SisterSong representative Omisade Burney-Scott said when calling attention to the North Carolina complaint
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/crime/article206877024.html

Tuesday Twitter roundup

Speaking of gerrymandering...

Which is all the more reason to focus heavily on Legislative races, at least here in NC. I'm still seeing way too many Dems talking only about Congressional contests, when there are 170 NCGA seats in play this year.

The anatomy of an environmental bad actor: DuPont's Teflon cover-up

The fallacy of allowing industry to self-regulate:

Thirty-four years ago, an employee from a DuPont plant near Parkersburg, West Virginia, filled a jug with tap water from a little general store just across the Ohio River called Mason’s Village Market. An internal DuPont document shows that the company was secretly testing the water for ammonium perfluorooctanoate — better known as C8. DuPont employees also took samples from stores in eight other unsuspecting communities in the Ohio River Valley.

The document shows C8 was detected at three stores closest to the plant, including Mason’s Village Market in Little Hocking, Ohio. It also shows that, at one of those stores, the level of C8 measured more than 20 times higher than what the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today considers safe for drinking water.

Their actions (or inaction) is proof the only reason they conducted this testing was to determine future legal exposure, not whether they should change their behavior for the safety of citizens. This compound has been slightly modified 3-4 times over the years, and again, it appears the reasons for those modifications was not to make them safer, just provide deniability. GenX is the most recent iteration, and here we are starting with a blank slate on just how toxic it is. But at least we seem to be ahead of the game compared to these poor folks:

Pages

Subscribe to Front page feed