Weekend open thread

Use this thread to keep the conversation going over this welcome long weekend. For those in need of some patriotic festivities, please join us on Saturday from 4 to 7 in Chapel Hill. We'll have barbecue, tea and lemonade, and are asking folks to bring a side dish or dessert. The weather promises to be splendid, and I'm sure turnout will be great. Last year about 130 people attended, and Jane and I always say ... the more the merrier! Our address is 451 Lakeshore Lane.

In the meantime, there will be plenty to talk about. For instance, we might want to talk about why Obama's policies in Afghanistan are almost guaranteed not to work.


Thanks for the invite

We're staying close to home and having a water balloon fight over at a friend's home. Our kids are all about the same age and we always have fun together.

Sunday we're going to Cane Creek Park so the kids can swim at the beach and we'll have a picnic and go canoeing.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

yeah I liked that too

here's an excerpt, though you should follow James's link for the full thing:

The real Bev Perdue

Bev Perdue was not elected chief executive of North Carolina because of her skills as a public speaker or debater or TV personality. On each of these counts, she is a politician of average ability. Nor was she elected as an agent of dramatic change.

She was elected to her high office because of her formidable experience and skill as a small "g" "governor" - that is, a veteran elected official who was steeped in the process of governing. Perdue couldn't out-debate or give a better speech that Republican nominee Pat McCrory or even primary opponent Richard Moore. And, as a sitting Lt. Governor with more than two decades' experience in Raleigh, she certainly couldn't out-promise anyone when it came to taking the state in bold new directions.

Where she beat them hands down - both in the eyes of voters and in reality - was in her knowledge of state government and experience in making it work. This was especially true in the case of the all-important state budget, which she knew intimately from her many years as Senate Appropriations Committee chair.

In short, few people were terribly moved or inspired by Perdue. What they were was assured. Here was a strong and experienced woman who knew state government like the back of her hand and who would keep the ship of state sailing a steady course. Indeed, her re-election in 2012 probably depends on sustaining and polishing this image.


On the other hand...

...the Supreme Court is poised to undo 100 years of precedent prohibiting unfettered corporate political speech. The Citizens United case (about the corporate funded "documentary" critical of Hillary Clinton) which was to have been decided last Monday has been expanded to other cases. If the Court opens the floodgates, individual free speech and speech governed by election laws could be drowned out.

It's Always Something

Don't get me wrong, I do love holidays and all that, and it's nice when everybody around you is mainly concerned with the Pursuit of Leisure, but the stress of preparing for and traveling to the location for said leisure, and the continually maintained control to keep from dropping an f-bomb right in the lap of somebody's Sunday-School-teaching grandmother, and whether you know it or not, there will be Pie, and if you have the audacity to refuse the pie, all other pie eaters who have a real or perceived weight problem will give you the Look, so refusing the pie is not really an Option, and you can't be the first person to leave either, because that's an implied Insult to all, earning you a barrage of queries: "You're not leaving already, are you? Where are you going? What could possibly be more enjoyable than this? Are you feeling okay? Are you late for an appointment, or something? What's her name? Have you had your piece of Pie yet?"


Have a happy Fourth of July, my friends, and please know that I consider each and every one of you to be a part of my family.