The NC GOP's hypocrisy on lottery funds abuse

And of course the irony is lost on them:

State Sen. Phil Berger, a Rockingham County Republican, led lottery opponents as minority leader in 2005. He derided the lottery as “a diversion from other educational problems that Democratic leaders have failed to address,” in the far-right Carolina Journal in August 2005. He also told the Journal he doubted the money would end up where advocates said it would go. ‘The money for education is not going to increase.”

Now they are addicted to its cash. Worse, they are the ones fulfilling their own dire prediction – using the cash to pay for basic education needs. Today much of the money goes to “non-instructional support staff” that provide for on-going school operations while Berger, House Speaker Tim Moore and others shower their political patrons, particularly the businesses that control the N.C. Chamber of Commerce, with tax breaks and credits.

This K-3 class size (unfunded) mandate is about to crush schools statewide, and the friction between school boards and county commissions is going to boil over long before Spring Break rolls around. But instead of rolling up their sleeves and preparing to fix it, BergerMoore is too busy crafting propaganda in an effort to shirk the responsibility for this crisis. The next few months are going to get ugly.

Thursday News: Sore loser

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ROY MOORE TRIES TO STOP ALABAMA FROM CERTIFYING DOUG JONES: Republican Roy Moore filed a lawsuit to try to stop Alabama from certifying Democrat Doug Jones as the winner of the U.S. Senate race.The court filing occurred about 14 hours ahead of Thursday's meeting of a state canvassing board to officially declare Jones the winner of the Dec. 12 special election. Jones defeated Moore by about 20,000 votes. Moore's attorney wrote in the complaint filed late Wednesday that he believed there were irregularities during the election and said there should be a fraud investigation and eventually a new election. Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill told The Associated Press Wednesday evening that he has no intention of delaying the canvassing board meeting. "It is not going to delay certification and Doug Jones will be certified (Thursday) at 1 p.m. and he will be sworn in by Vice President Pence on the third of January," Merrill said.
http://www.newsobserver.com/latest-news/article191907459.html

Income inequality by race in NC stark and staggering

And it creates a formula of generational poverty that's almost impossible to reverse:

Disparities in outcomes did not come out of thin air; they arise from systems and policies, past and present, that create barriers to economic opportunity for people of color. For example, inequity in pay, rooted both in occupational segregation and in people of color being paid less for doing the same work as their white colleagues, is a major reason that communities of color struggle with higher levels of poverty.

African American workers in North Carolina were paid roughly $3.25 per hour less on average than their white colleagues in 2016, a gap that compounds rapidly over time into a monthly pay disparity of almost $600 and a deficit of more than $6,700 annually. The gap is even larger for Hispanic workers in North Carolina, who are paid $5.34 less than whites on average, which compounds into a pay gap of over $11,000 annually.

These numbers sound more like something that would have been compiled back in the 1950's than just last year. And while many folks I know prefer to write stuff like this off as merely one more example that Capitalism is inherently corrupted and needs to be replaced, in many ways, that's just a cop-out. It gives you an excuse to not even try and fix the wage disparity problem, and I have a big problem with that. Here's more:

Wednesday News: "White" Christmas?

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KKK LEFT RECRUITING FLYERS IN HILLANDALE NEIGHBORHOOD ON CHRISTMAS EVE: A Triangle community is expressing concern after discovering KKK fliers in their driveways on Christmas Eve. The notes, meant to recruit members, were placed in plastic bags, along with rocks and a few KKK business cards, and distributed throughout the Hillandale neighborhood in Wake County. "And, for whatever reason, they put peppermints in there," resident Mike Chandler said. Chandler found the bag in his driveway on the morning of Dec. 24. He said his wife drove around the neighborhood and found many other homes with the bags in their driveways. "It's a little bit disconcerting. I've been here 33, going on 34, years, never had anything like this come here before," he said. Among other things, the flier says “white pride doesn’t mean hate,” but many residents said they believe the KKK stands for hate.
http://www.wral.com/triangle-resident-says-neighborhood-received-christmas-eve-message-from-kkk/1721...

Tuesday News: Trumplethinskin

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2017 LEFT WORLD LEADERS STUNNED BY TRUMP'S LACK OF DIPLOMACY: “The change in Washington puts the European Union in a difficult situation; with the new administration seeming to put into question the last 70 years of American foreign policy,” Donald Tusk, president of European Union, in a Jan. 31 letter raising concerns about Trump’s “worrying declarations.” “The times in which we could completely depend on others are, to a certain extent, over. I’ve experienced that in the last few days. We Europeans truly have to take our fate into our own hands,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel to an election rally in Munich May 28, alluding to difficulties with Trump after meetings on NATO and the G7 summit. “Make our planet great again,” French President Emmanuel Macron statement June 1 on the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article191239079.html

Tuesday Twitter roundup

Making sure judges don't go too easy on those law-breaking children:

"Cold-hearted" just doesn't quite cover this:

Monday News: Christmas edition

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HOSPITAL-BOUND PATIENTS GIVEN TEDDY BEARS AS LITTLE FURRY COMPANIONS: Had she her druthers, Wynell Richardson would be spending Christmas at home with her husband of 63 years. But the eighth floor of Rex Hospital grew two shades brighter Sunday morning when a pair of children laid a teddy bear on her lap. A heart patient from Nashville, Richardson will pass her holiday in a telemetry bed, watching Raleigh’s holiday lights twinkle out her window. But when Chase and John Pittman brought her gift, she found new comfort to recuperate by. “I’m a whole lot better now,” said Richardson, 83. “They can keep me here until they get me right.” As the hours until Christmas ticked nearer, the volunteer Rex Guild brought presents to nearly every patient in the hospital, a tradition that dates to 1936. Before bears, the gift of choice for 20-plus years, they brought poinsettias.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article191520219.html

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

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WHY CAN'T LEGISLATIVE LEADERS STOP LYING ABOUT THEIR UNFUNDED CLASS-SIZE MANDATE? A group of parents rallied at the North Carolina Legislative Building to demand the General Assembly’s leadership repeal, or responsibly fund, the unfunded class-size mandate due to go into effect in the upcoming 2018-19 school year. The rally drew a troubling response from Phil Berger, President Pro Tem of the state Senate: “Even though some local school leaders decided to use the extra state funding to benefit their own spending priorities instead of to reduce class sizes, those reductions have already been fully funded,” he said. About three weeks later, Speaker of the House Tim Moore was asked to weigh in on the class-size issue. He, too, gave a worrisome response: “We have funded the positions.” Why are these responses so troubling? They are wholly untrue, indicating that the two most powerful men in state government either fail to understand the biggest issue facing North Carolina’s public schools, or are purposefully lying about the issue.
http://www.wral.com/kris-nordstrom-why-can-t-general-assembly-leadership-stop-lying-about-their-unfu...

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