In Other Wilderness News...

This landmark agreement between International Paper, The Nature Conservancy and The Conservation Fund is critical to conservation efforts in North Carolina and throughout the Southeast. North Carolinians will now have an additional 77,000 acres of protected land to appreciate and explore.

That's governor Easley describing the purchase of several hundred thousand acres of paper-company forest across the southeast by a conservancy group. Details at the NCDP website.

Getting in Front on Gangs

All too often Democrats in this state wait until crisis time to start any real thinking, see e.g. Jim Black. The growing concerns of gangs in North Carolina is one area that the Democrats should start moving now. There is a wealth of statistical evidence on the problem of gang activity in North Carolina (focusing on Hispanic gangs) in the new study from the Governor's Crime Commission. The data that they found was disturbing:

Trend data indicates a 16.6 percent increase in the number of reported gangs

ACTION ALERT: Fully Fund Education and Health

Call Members of the House Budget Committee and Urge Them to Vote for the DeLauro Amendment

ACTION NEEDED: If your Representative serves on the House Budget Committee (see list below), call him/her TODAY and urge him/her to vote for the DeLauro amendment to the FY 2007 Budget Resolution. This amendment would increase overall spending on education and health programs by $7 billion above President Bush's request for fiscal year (FY) 2007. The House Budget Committee will begin consideration of the Budget Resolution on Wednesday March 29 at 10:30 a.m.

The "They Do Not Speak English in Europe Myth"

I am sure that there will be more myths/lies about the immigration issue going forward, but one is already starting to kill me. I have heard at least three times on national media (with the third being this morning the supposedly liberal Alex Bennett on Sirius) that we need to make everyone speak English because "we need to learn English when we travel around Europe". This is a completely ridiculous statement.

Having traveled around Europe and having many friends from Europe, I know that the vast majority of the continent speaks English as a second language. As a traveler, there is seldom any problem negotiating Europe without knowing the native language. All Europeans are taught a second language in school, and for the most part that language is English.

Dear John Hood.

As the Grand Duke of All Things Conservative here in North Carolina, and the Crown Prince in the Kingdom of the Puppetmaster, you are, we assume, responsible for the gleeful frenzy on the Carolina Journal website over the fall of Speaker Jim Black. Indeed, you seem to have covered almost every angle of the story, except for the small fact that the progressive community here at BlueNC and elsewhere in North Carolina have led the way in calling for the Speaker to step down.

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