Betsy Muse's blog

Blogging from your phone

Cat in bag

Adding images from your cell phone is possible, but really a pain. I will write a tutorial. Admin pages are not responsive, so blogging from your phone is not as simple as I had hoped. I will address that after the site is running smoothly.

Editor Update

BlueNC home of progressive North Carolina politics

I have reverted back to our old content editor. CKeditor is a really powerful editor and is very widely used. Something was fighting with it. We can try it out again after the election in November, but none of us has time for a learning curve right now.

Please let me know if you have any issues. You can reach me under the technical contact on our contact form linked to in the menu bar above.

Happy Retirement Day James

For those of us who have been a part of North Carolina's political blogging scene for more than a few years, James Protzman stands as a leader in the political blogging movement. Long before newspapers paid journalists to blog, James, along with Lance and John, provided a megaphone for the rest of us. Today, we are celebrating his return to full-time blogging. 

HA! Just kidding. Today, James's friends and colleagues are gathering to celebrate his retirement from paid work. I make the distinction because blogging is hard work too...we just don't get paid to do it!

BlueNC is going on vacation

Yes, we are on our way to an exotic locale to enjoy a couple of days of rest and relaxation. The exclusive resort known as Drupal 7 is our ultimate destination and the trip comes complete with little umbrella drinks and gourmet meals served at poolside. I have given Steve and James the next few days off while I complete the upgrade. If you are an admin, please do not create content during this time. It will not migrate over. What can you expect when BlueNC returns?

  • a responsive design that makes it easier for you to access, read, and blog on BlueNC whether you are on a desktop, laptop, tablet or mobile device
  • a better text editor that makes it easier to style your blog posts and add images
  • better integration with social media
  • ...and coming soon we will have content collections that make it easier to find the information you are looking for

New Mecklenburg County charter school closing after only four weeks

Last Spring, Student First Academy closed after only 8 months of formal operation as a charter school reportedly because of financial mismanagement. Today, one of 11 new charter schools in Mecklenburg County, Concrete Roses STEM Academy, has told parents it is shutting its doors after only four weeks of operation. The Charlotte Observer is reporting the suspected reason is insolvency, however, there is no indication it is due to mishandling of funds.

Concrete Roses STEM was one of 11 charter schools approved by the state a year ago for the 2014-15 school year. At the time of its application, the school’s anticipated enrollment was one of the largest for proposed charters in Mecklenburg, with 2,400 students in grades K-12 expected by its 10th year of operation.

North Carolina Democratic Party fails to renew domain name

The North Carolina Democratic Party has either forgotten to renew the party's domain name, has decided to change the domain name, or has decided to shut the site down. Either way, earlier this evening searches for information on NCDP's website returned errors. Party email accounts linked to the domain are also down.

Candidates, volunteers, and party members rely on the site for election information, party documents, and as a means to stay connected. It is hard to believe the party would let this happen in the heat of an important election year.

You are invited to Carteret County Young Dem's Summer Rally with Kay Hagan

August 7 is the day to head to Morehead City for the Carteret County Young Dems and 3rd Congressional District Summer Rally and Picnic in the Park featuring Senator Kay Hagan and a whole slate of elected officials and candidates. Enjoy music by the Last Chance Wrangler's Band, mingle with friends and rub elbows with North Carolina's political elite...just kidding here. Seriously, Morehead City is beautiful this time of year and this is a great way to end your summer.

You can see the Facebook event here. The rally and picnic are free, but you can always donate to the Carteret County Young Dems, NCDP 3rd Congressional District, Carteret County Democratic Party, or your favorite candidate as a show of appreciation.

From the event page:

Another Case for Reparations

We often talk about social justice at BlueNC, but we rarely talk about reparations. I'd like to take a step in that direction this morning. I'm not an expert on the subject and until recently didn't spend a lot of time thinking about it. This article in the May issue of The Atlantic by Ta-Nehisi Coates helped me get over the hurdle of understanding the necessity of reparations.

Two hundred fifty years of slavery. Ninety years of Jim Crow. Sixty years of separate but equal. Thirty-five years of racist housing policy. Until we reckon with our compounding moral debts, America will never be whole.

Part of what kept me from embracing the idea of reparations was the enormity of what needs to be done and the knowledge that it won't be enough.

Tillis, Berger & McCrory rush new legislation outlawing elitism

This is satire. Please take it in the humorous spirit in which it is written.

Both houses of the North Carolina legislature rushed into late night session to pass legislation outlawing elitism in North Carolina and Governor Pat McCrory signed it this morning saying, "This is an important law to protect average North Carolinians from being discriminated against. I wish it had been in place before I selected our poet laureate. She was held to much higher standards than the average poet could meet. That isn't fair. Average people deserve a chance to get awards too."

The law addresses several areas where Tillis, Berger, and McCrory felt average North Carolinians were losing out:

NC Scholars

The NC Scholars program was started in 1983 to designate those high school students with high academic performance. The NC Scholars program will now recognize all students with a GPA of 2.0 and higher.

Charter school in Charlotte lets students down before it opens

What happens when a charter school fails students before the school opens? You wind up with a lot of upset parents and kids, especially when the school was intended to serve 9th and 10th graders. High school is tough enough without finding out six weeks before school begins that your plans have changed.

From the Charlotte Observer:

Carolina STEM Academy, one of 11 Charlotte-area charter schools that had been approved to open in August, notified families this week that there aren’t enough students to make that happen.

“Unfortunately, we are disappointed to share the news that, due to enrollment and continuing difficulties with closing (on the facility), Carolina STEM will be unable to open this year,” a letter from the board of directors said.

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