scharrison's blog

Psychopaths on parade in Raleigh threaten assistant DA's family

The police should have been all over this unhinged racist:

The white, male demonstrator who met up with Thomas and his family in the crosswalk stuck out his right arm with his palm open. Thomas, who is black, interpreted it as a Nazi salute. A Raleigh-based pro-Second Amendment group called Blue Igloo, which live-streamed the demonstration and posted it online, has said that the gesture was not a Nazi salute.

Beth Thomas ducked away from the man and asked that he keep his distance. His response isn’t heard on the video. Deonte Thomas said he heard the following exchange involving his wife: “My wife had told him to back up and he said something to the effect that, well, I can hit you from here. I can get you from here.”

This nonsense has become intolerable. Who does that? I mean, aside from the obvious racist overtones in this confrontation, who threatens a family with small children in strollers? The answer is, somebody whose racism runs so deep he doesn't consider black children as being human. Dude needs to be found and arrested for communicating a threat, and then given an intense mental health evaluation. Because if he's crazy enough to pull that stunt on camera, god knows what he would do if no witnesses were around.

Voting during a pandemic: Advocates and officials chime in

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Hat-tip to Melissa Boughton for putting this together:

It’s not easy to forget the photos of masked Wisconsin voters standing in large lines waiting to cast a ballot in the middle of a pandemic. Residents there risked their health and lives to make their voices heard; they chose democracy in the face of uncertainty, and now, the rest of the nation has a chance to learn from them.

One big lesson that I hope the NC GOP learned from that fiasco is this: You screw around with the election process to try and protect one (or several) of your candidates, and the people are liable to punish you for it. With Jill Karofsky's win over uber-conservative Daniel Kelly, the Wisconsin Supreme Court is now 4-3 conservative, perched on the edge of a flip to Liberal control. The fact that very Court was poised to purge 200,000 voters from the rolls with Kelly's backing likely played a role also, as well as the Court's decision to force the election itself. Back to NC and the things we need to do to help voters:

Notes from the Kakistocracy: Louis DeJoy is the new Postmaster General

Money makes the Trump world go 'round:

The Postal Service’s board of governors confirmed late Wednesday that Louis DeJoy, a North Carolina businessman who is currently in charge of fundraising for the Republican National Convention in Charlotte, will serve as the new postmaster general.

The action will install a stalwart Trump ally to lead the Postal Service, which he has railed against for years, and probably move him closer than ever before to forcing the service to renegotiate its terms with companies and its own union workforce.

If DeJoy was genuinely interested in supporting and improving the Postal Service, the very first thing he would do is lobby the Senate to amend the stupid law that requires them to fully fund decades-worth of retirement benefits. The main reason that was enacted is so Republicans could wail and gnash their teeth about the post office's financial woes (which they caused). It's the classic GOP "Break it and then complain about it being broken" approach to governing, which we see all the time here in NC. We will see if he is prepared to do the job right, or help Trump attack Jeff Bezos:

Ralph Hise is pushing major expansion of private school vouchers

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Sucking $146 Million in lifeblood from public schools:

AN ACT TO CHANGE THE ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA FOR THE OPPORTUNITY SCHOLARSHIP GRANT FUND PROGRAM TO ALLOW ANY STUDENT ELIGIBLE TO ATTEND A NORTH CAROLINA PUBLIC SCHOOL TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR A SCHOLARSHIP GRANT AND TO APPROPRIATE FUNDS FOR THE EXPANSION OF THE PROGRAM.

This is actually Stage 3 of the scheme. Stage 1 was getting the voucher program passed by focusing on poor kids, Stage 2 was adding an additional $10 Million per year even though it was not needed, and now Stage 3 will funnel tax revenues to rich families, so they can segregate their little darlings in posh corporate creches. And you can expect Dan Forest to be leg-humping this bill very soon:

Tuesday Twitter roundup

We should have known better. They pull some kind of stunt like this every session, but hopefully this will be their last.

NC Chamber behind the nixing of increased unemployment benefits

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Insert an angry, frustrated observation in this space:

The chamber opposed the proposal to expand the state’s maximum unemployment benefits by $50 a week, Starling said.

Starling said the way that proposal had been written, it wasn’t clear if the extra money would go to everyone receiving unemployment, or only people receiving the maximum amount. And without a financial estimate of how much it would cost, he said, many businesses were wary of potentially having to pay more into the unemployment system in the future.

Yeah, nevermind the fact that extra $50 would be injected directly into the economy, at a time when that economy needs it desperately. Oh no, the possibility businesses might have to contribute an extra few dollars into the unemployment insurance fund sometime down the road is intolerable. But what is tolerable to the Chamber are the loans the government is giving them:

Lies, damn lies, and Tim Moore: Rewriting history on unemployment cuts

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Look up "disingenuous" in the dictionary, and it shows his picture in the margin:

By 2019, one in 10 unemployed workers in North Carolina was receiving benefits, the lowest share in the nation. But the state’s trust fund was in far better shape than when the legislature passed tighter restrictions in 2013.

“It was certainly a painful thing to do, and it was a tough vote,” said Tim Moore, now the Republican speaker of the North Carolina State House. “The balance that we had to strike was between making sure we’re taking care of somebody who truly can’t find a job, versus allowing in folks who simply did not want to work.”

If that was all it was about, giving benefits to those who truly needed them, you wouldn't have cut the maximum weekly benefit from $535 down to $350. And you wouldn't have reduced the duration of payments from 26 weeks down to 13. This was pure reverse Robin Hood; taking money from the neediest of families to help justify cutting taxes for the wealthy. And I am bone tired of Republicans bragging about that "trust fund," because it was a heinous violation of trust that fueled the $3+ Billion in blood money that filled it. I'll let Reverend Barber conclude this argument:

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