whichrevolution's blog

What good is having a Democratic Governorship, House and Senate?

Thank you Governor Easley! Does anyone else think this budget is awesome? Could it have happened if the GOP was in control? NO!

Let's not let the media push this to the back burner behind the Jim Black stuff.

Specific recommendations in Easley’s budget include the following:

# Increase North Carolina’s Commitment to Education – An additional $839 million for education above the 2006-07 levels, including salaries and benefits. The budget fully funds enrollment increases in the public schools, community colleges and universities. The budget expands More at Four with 10,000 additional slots.

# Continue High School Reform – $7.5 million to ensure operation of 55 Learn and Earn schools in 2007-08 to improve graduation rates, student performance and competitiveness; $12 million to expand broadband high-speed Internet access in schools and establish Learn and Earn Online to make 20,000 community college and university course offerings available to high school students statewide in 2007-08 and 40,000 in 2008-09; $7.3 million to improve and expand distance learning for community colleges; $4.2 million to improve distance learning for universities; $2 million to continue the high school turnaround initiative and assistance teams.

John Edwards did the right thing, progressives should follow suit

As a pro-choice, pro-gay rights, progressive Catholic, John Edwards’s blogging scandal produced some funny reactions for me.

As a huge critic of the direction the Church has taken, I’m always amazed at how defensive criticism from non-Catholics towards the Church makes me feel.

I think that people need to realize that within the Catholic Church there is a struggle between progressives and traditionalists that has been quietly raging since the reforms of Vatican II in the 1960s. Vatican II called for a great deal of change for the Catholic Church – much of that change has not yet been realized. The council called for equality between the sexes, collegiality among the leaders of the church, (read: a move towards democracy and away from the current monarchical hierarchy) and a more enlightened understanding of human sexuality.

Looking inward at the politics as self-expression

Josh Marshall puts very eloquently what is a major annoyance of politics on the left side of the center for me:

Whittle this discussion down and I think what you have is a fetishism of street protests. Or perhaps more generally politics as self-expression rather than political effectiveness.

He asks:

Maybe the question shouldn't be why aren't there more demonstrations and protests, but why should there be? Would that be more effective in changing the situation on the ground in Iraq?

I think this applies broadly to the left as a whole. The anti-war protesters aren't willing to evaluate how effective their activities are in actually achieving political success, the key motive is to express to the public their opposition to the war – regardless of the effect it will have on political success, and, furthermore, the effect it will have on the lives on the men and women serving in our military.

Hillary can win the military vote in 2008

With another peace march approaching, I would guess that the leaders of the peace movement are quite excited to see if the President's low approval ratings and the low approval ratings of the situation in Iraq will bring a united call for immediate withdrawal.

At my university, I remember the early peace movement well and attended the few debates on campus about the need to go to war. What struck me most was the absence of any groups representing what I would think of as the middle ground or the mainstream. There were a few hawkish, young republican neo-cons who were dwarfed by a much larger group of hippy types and punks (I’m trying to descriptive, and intend no offense.) They were outfitted in their respective uniforms from Hot Topic or from the Salvation Army. They were also, based on what they had to say, completely devoid of any specific reasoning regarding the specific question of invading Iraq and Afghanistan.

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