I <3 Barry Saunders

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Just when you thought the N&O had degenerated into a fleeting shadow of its former self, along comes Barry Saunders with an awesome, dead-on smack upside the head of the theocrats trying to take over North Carolina government.

Years ago, I thought the voice in my head was calling me to become a preacher, so I enrolled in Bible college. Not much from that week stuck, but I do recall Luke 6:26, which went "Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you."

My Letter to N&O Regarding I-40 Congestion

Below is a letter to the editor that I sent to the N&O following their story on I-40 congestion that failed to address any alternative transportation options. They responded that they would consider publishing it if I cut down the length in half. Three reasons that I do not want to do this: 1) I did not spend much time at all on it and do not want to put it in print if I horribly missed something; 2) I do not think that I could that many cuts and still have a good piece; and 3) I can put it up here and probably have the same number of people actually read it (and I like you guys better). But go ahead and try to edit it down if you want, or even use the ideas to write your own LTE.

Let 'em drink oil

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Rick Martinez, the Puppet in Residence at the News and Observer is in rare form this morning, with an article worth examining if only for its sheer ignorance.

Last week the U.S. House of Representatives took the first step at getting at it when it voted, 232 to 187, to lift the congressional moratorium and allow states to decide whether to allow drilling off their coastlines (Jones voted with the majority). While $3-a-gallon gasoline grabbed headlines as the reason for bipartisan support, I think Jones identified the real cause. Up to 75 percent of the payments from new offshore oil and gas leases would go to the states. That could be some serious cash.

charles taylor gets the stinkpalm!

this probably isn't the right forum for a post like this, and i apologize in advance if that's the case, but i really had to share this story...

yesterday i was talking to a friend of mine (who wishes to remain anonymous, natch - i'll call him "dave") who was at the asheville tourists game (perhaps you've seen video footage of manager joe mikulik's recent meltdown that got him suspended for a week, fined $1,000 and single-handedly raised billy martin-style histrionics to a whole new level) against the hickory crawdads on sunday, july 2nd.

CAFTA's Progress

Charlotte Business-Journal: "Guatemala has implemented the Central American Free Trade Agreement, leaving Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic as the only two signatories that haven't put the agreement into effect.

CAFTA is designed to reduce trade barriers between the United States and five Central American countries and the Dominican Republic. The agreement will reduce or eliminate duties on goods shipped between the United States, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic.

Whoa... Montana is More Advanced than NC?

North Carolina is known for being a relatively progressive state and leads the South in many policy areas. So why doesn't North Carolina have a renewable energy portfolio standard yet? Twenty other states do. A renewable energy portfolio standard is a state policy that requires electric companies to provide a certain percentage of their power supply from renewable sources. Maine currently requires 30%, New York requires 24% by 2013, and even a red state like Montana requires 15% by 2015.


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