Apparently North Carolina ranks 48th in the nation in per pupil spending? And our average for teacher pay ranks 46th? To say that is discouraging is an understatement.
According to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI),
This will be the fifth consecutive year public schools have endured significant funding reductions. Many local superintendents have shared that schools in their districts have already been "cut to the bone." For years, many schools in North Carolina have operated with fewer teachers and staff, limited resources such as textbooks and technology, less training for teachers, and with facilities in need of update and repair. One superintendent has described the situation as a rubber band that has been stretched to its breaking point.
Given the harsh spending cuts over the past few years, it seems strange that our lawmakers are focused on charter schools and other faddish privatization schemes. No matter what your opinion is on charter schools, they take money away from our traditional public schools. Since 2008, the number of charter schools has grown by almost 50 percent, while over that same period nearly 4,000 traditional public schools have closed.
The "Fiscal Cliff" Is A Myth. As Paul Krugman put it, "The looming prospect of spending cuts and tax increases isn't a fiscal crisis. It is, instead, a political crisis brought on by the G.O.P.'s attempt to take the economy hostage."1 The Congressional 1%ers are manufacturing this crisis to pressure everyone else to extend the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy and accept painful cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.
Here is a recording we did for the Institute on Southern Studies' report on Real Jobs NC election influence. Recently filed reports with the IRS indicate the group is looking in repeat their 2010 election influence.
November 8th is approaching and with it the fate of the Wake County School Board. The stakes are pretty high this Election Day because of one race in particular, the runoff election of District 3 between Kevin Hill and Heather Losurdo, and, to me, this particular race seems extra strange.
First, officially, the school board is supposed to be non-partisan. Of course, that all changed in 2009 when Republican backed candidates took over the board with the help of their financial supporters, notably businessman Art Pope who is notorious for funding puppet candidates who support his own agenda. District 3’s election is no different. Hill is being challenged by a candidate who not only spoke at a Tea Party rally, but was also president of the Northern Wake Republican Club.
Recently, NC Speaker of the House Thom Tillis told a crowd of supporters that we need to get people with conditions like cerebral palsy to "look down" on moms and kids who are in a tough spot and need Medicaid.(1) These immoral tactics hurt our state, and we don't want someone who is brazen about employing them as leader of our House of Representatives.
This isn't North Carolina specific, but I wanted to share a quick note about a new tool that may be of interest to those working with advocacy organizations or political campaigns.
My online outreach firm has been working with a brand new web platform called NationBuilder. It is innovative and provides brilliant integration of social media, with an intuitive interface, both for supporters and for administrators.
NationBuilder has a lot of great features straight out of the box, which we've been able to further customize as well. If you want to see it in action, visit Action NC. (You should visit them anyway - they are a good group).
What if anyone could stockpile any weapons they wanted, as long as they were made in North Carolina? Representative Glen Bradley seems to believe you should have that right.
Rep. Bradley is a new member of the North Carolina House, winning election with only 51% of the vote. Nevertheless, he has been busy in the house. He's the primary sponsor on five bills that contain invoke the word "freedom" more than Mel Gibson in Braveheart. One of these bills, House Bill 241, would make "a personal firearm, a firearm accessory, or ammunition" fully manufactured within the borders of the State of North Carolina not subject to federal law.
I have privately purchased insurance, costing me about $170 a month. I got a check-up in December. It will cost me $785 out of pocket. Worse, because the check up was in December, the $785 won't even count towards my deductible, because the deductible resets on Jan 1. I am healthy and single, make about 40k a year, and affording medical care is a challenge for me.
The State Executive Committee is the governing body of the North Carolina Democratic Party. The SEC:
Elects the NCDP chair.
Elects delegates to the DNC.
Votes upon changes to the NCDP platform.
Votes upon resolutions to inform (or censure) elected Democrats.
Approve the Bylaws/Constitutions of State Auxiliaries.
Receive and approve the NCDP budget each year.
Consider petitions for alternative methods of organizing precincts.
The SEC is composed of people like you. There are over 600 members of the SEC. Below is a short guide on how you can seek election to the SEC.
Learn and Prepare: Only run if you are interested and have the time to commit to it. Call your County Party and get informed on when and where the meetings will be held and what the responsibilties are. Ask any questions you might have.
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