For whatever's on your mind. James's blog Comments Quite a doozy, here I randomly looked at my pay stub (online only, because Durham County is cheap) today, to see how much I'm making so I can compare wages for when I decided I've had it with the monumental BS in this job, and I saw that my pay had been cut -- without notice!! -- by $1/hr, as of the pay period starting 5/19/08. Further investigation by my superiors yielded this: the head of payroll decided I'd hit the top of my pay scale, shouldn't have gotten the raise I got at my 2007 performance appraisal, and decreased my pay to my original salary. Except that shortly after I was hired, the pay scales were adjusted, and now I'm near the bottom of my pay scale (the top of which is twice my current salary.) So my superior is on the case -- and rather annoyed by it, which is good; that means she'll do something about it. Except that the guy in payroll is well known to be unreachable or to lose documentation or to "not receive" documentation. If my pay hasn't gone back to its previous level *plus* my 3.5% raise plus the 1% COLA we've been promised, or I haven't gotten a satisfactory explanation and promise to fix it, the DOL is going to be hearing from me. And if I can find a new job that I like, I'll be tendering my resignation. Because I've had it up to /here/ with Durham County Government and their bullshit. PS: Is the DOL the right place to go? Anybody have experience with the whistleblower/retaliation laws? I'd go straight to the local radio station WDNC ... and the Durham Morning Herald. But then I'm a hothead. J PS Not sure about DOL. Perhaps Robin Anderson is visiting today and could offer some guidance. If only people knew... how much waste there was in Durham government. I hesitate to say corruption, but incompetence and nepotism spring to mind. I've thought about sending tips to the Herald Sun, but I don't have any good data, other than "people are idiots" and the like. Pity public employees can't unionize. Kennedy Welcomed Back to Senate w/Standing Ovation There's been some talk around here on the Medicare payment cuts. Today, Kennedy returned to the Senate floor to vote on this. Kennedy has a life long record of advocating for healthcare for all Americans and serves as Chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. HR 6331 is a critical Medicare piece of legislation that would cut Medicare payments to providers by 10.6%, placing unknown numbers of Medicare recipients In serious jeopardy of not being able to access healthcare. Senator Ted Kennedy was welcomed back to the Senate Floor with a standing ovation after returning from having brain surgery for a malignant tumor. The standing ovation went on over for two minutes. Heartwarming. NCDem Amy on YouTube This standing ovation is a great tribute to a great American Ted is the Democratic standard we should all aspire to. Marshall Adame 2014 U.S. Congress Candidate NC-03 My heart is broken Losing the Democratic Primary in May after one full year of full time campaigning made me feel dreadful , but losing that election was nothing to the pain I feel today. Maybe I am just a big mush. After 18 wonderful years in our house, our little four legged sweetheart died of heart failure in our front room as my wife becky stayed next to her knowing the end was here. As Becky spoke to her and stroked Prieta's now mostly grey fur.....Prieta took her last breath and died. I am in New Jersey and Becky called me from North Carolina as those moments were occuring. I had no idea how prieta's death would impact me personally. I am sitting in New Jersey, devestated and heartbroken, knowing I will never see Prieta alive again. 18 years is a long time. Funny how, even for a moment, the issues and struggles of Politics and life fade to nothingness when your heart is broken and and a loved one passes into what is surely the process of life we will all one day face. Today war seems even more ridiculas to me than it did two days ago. No loss of an election could ever compare to the pain of losing a living companion and friend. she was part of the Adame family and will be remembered that way. I loved her. If threre is a dog heaven , she is there. Prieta went there yesterday...about 7AM. You are my friends. I wanted to share this with you. Marshall Adame 2014 U.S. Congress Candidate NC-03 My condolences Marshall, That is heartbreaking and you are soo right about hold these companions have on us. I am so crazy in love with my dog that I can't bear to think that someday I'll have to let him go. Love in this form is utterly precious and dear and irreplaceable. I'm so sorry about your loss. Bru' It's one of the saddest things. Sorry you couldn't be home with Becky. J PS There is definitely a dog heaven. Not being there was the worst thing. Thanks James. nt Marshall Adame 2014 U.S. Congress Candidate NC-03 Dog heaven? No. If dogs aren't welcome in plain ol' people heaven, I don't want to go there. I'm so sorry Marshall I always try to remember at these times... All those years of affection, laughter and companionship far outweigh the grief when it's time to say goodbye. A very lucky girl she was to have the Adame family to love her all her life. Progressive Democrats of North Carolina I am so sorry, Marshall My heart is broken for you and Becky. Can we, instead, start talking about "for the good of North Carolina?" --Leslie H.Pointing at Naked Emperors So sorry for your loss I'm sorry to hear that, my condolences. My 13 year old dog died in a very similiar way a number of years ago. Thankfully, your sweet Prieta did not go through a long process of suffering. NCDem Amy on YouTube Thank you my friends. You are very kind. nt Marshall Adame 2014 U.S. Congress Candidate NC-03 I'm so sorry, Marshall Prieta was blessed to have such an unbelievably nice and caring family. OMG love it NCDemAmy! Is there any way you could post this over at www.talkingaboutpolitics.com? They're still beatin' and wailin' about me and Gary and Zelda and at least one or two "anonymice" for saying Jesse Helms was not the best thing since sliced (white) bread. May I at least quote your post? They're also fulminating about what a radical extremist blog BLUENC is. (Thought you'd like to hear that, James!) Of course, feel free to! I am not signed up over there but please feel free to use my post however you wish. If you need the embed code for the video to copy and paste it, it's in the box to the right of the video, here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YpxK65563RI (Not sure if you are familiar with YouTube or not). NCDem Amy on YouTube Unless some wingnut is complaining I suppose we're not really doing our job. Thanks for update. It simply underscores how far the middle has slid to the right that BlueNC would be considered "radical" by anyone. I guess having a low opinion of dead racists qualifies as extremism these days. (White bread. Funny.) I'm just makin' calls for Kissell. It's amazing how many people are sick of Robin Hayes. I've gone through calling two full precincts of voters in Union County, and when they answer the phone, they're willing to talk. Some may not know the name of the retired-millworker-now-schoolteacher aiming to take our Country back one vote at a time, but they at least know that they want Hayes out. "I don't know much about the two gentlemen, but I do know I'm sick of these jobs being shipped overseas." "I'm fed up with going broke at the pump every week." "I can't remember the last time I saw Mr. Hayes here in Union, but I've sure heard an awful lot about that Kissell fella." This is one of the most exciting races I've ever helped out on. If anyone wants to experience this first hand, and discuss the issues with voters here in the 8th, I'm positively certain the Kissell campaign can use your help. Visit www.larrykissell.com E-mail email@example.com Call 1-877-428-4048 You go, Christopher. I'm going to start a movement to put Moore County back in the 8th where we belong. Can we, instead, start talking about "for the good of North Carolina?" --Leslie H.Pointing at Naked Emperors Getting Moore Co. back in the 8th is an interesting idea. It will be difficult, I think, but you are correct to start now. A suggestion - you might consider couching your campaign in terms of redistricting post 2010 census. I would guess that redistricting, if it were to occur, would have to heppen in 2011 or 2012. (Sorry, if you have already considered this.) Person County Democrats I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you? An extra 7,205 Republicans? Remind me where this is a good idea? (Other than you and I totally kicking ass in the 8th) Granted we have about an extra 70,000 registrations to spare. Sadly we have a TERRIBLE statewide problem of DINO's and sleeping Dem's. (P.S. Now that I glance at Moore on a map, we're terribly close. We need to start a book club so I can give you your Jimmy F. Carter book back!) We used to be part of the 8th. I believe we were moved to the 6th to keep Coble in his job. We have grown our dems to 18,000 - with another 2200 independents voting in our primary. Those would all be Kissell folks. So would a lot more of the indpendents, who outnumber both Dems and Reps at this point. We're definitely a swing county - the independents decide it all. But Larry Kissell? He'd win in a landslide here. People who live here have his bumperstickers from last time on their cars. His wife works here. Coble needed our Reps. to counter the Dems in Greensboro. That's my belief. And yes, PersonDem, I'm figuring on after the 2010 census. Although we're part of a test run right now - I don't know if that will help or not. Christopher - as for the Jimmy F. Carter book - pass it on to someone else who needs to learn the truth about the man. He's the only one with balls enough to have saved this country. Can we, instead, start talking about "for the good of North Carolina?" --Leslie H.Pointing at Naked Emperors taking a break from politics Was at my son's swim meet last night - cut short at the end by the storm - and James, I was certain I saw you there, reading a book? Am I hallucinating bloggers everywhere? I won't take much of a break. I am off to Netroots Nation next week, with son in tow. He is a good volunteer there, and my husband will be in Africa and I can't leave the boy with the builders who are redoing a wall at our house. This breaks my vow to stay out of Texas until Bush was out of office - meaning, not seeing my relatives unless they come to Carolina. Okay, I am sick about the FISA bill. At least at Netroots I will be with others to let off steam. Wasn't me But it sure sounds like fun. Have a great and safe trip! Give our regards to the rest of the interTubes! J PS I hate that you have to go to Texas. I feel the same way about Florida. Likewise Okay, I am sick about the FISA bill. Me too. I've not seen a good rationale for why Obama voted for it. Mind you, I'm not pissed off enough to jump to McSame's camp (and I'm not sure I understand those who say they are). Just what is that strange page-loading noise?! Has President Cheney and his toady Bush, emboldened by their early FISA Christmas present from the Democrats, already starting snooping on my web activity? It sounds like that old timey noise you use to get when you knew someone was tapping your phone. It's the slot machine! Jerimee's lobbying for video poker these days. Check it.