Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

Trump’s mysterious appeal

Saturday, July 25th, 2015

One of my conservative friends and former shipmates posted this the other day about Donald Trump’s presidential candidacy:

I’m probably going to lose a friend or two over this, but I’m really liking Trump. People will immediately dismiss him because they are democrats or extreme right wingers, but put parties aside and listen to what he’s saying. If you just say no because you’re not a republican, that’s ignorant. He makes more sense than anyone else running. He has the ties in Asia to work more effectively with China. He has the business knowledge to bring us back to the top. Before you jump up and say he filed bk, that was a smart business move. Many companies and individuals do that. Trump is the only person running that has the cajones to speak honestly and he’s making a lot of sense. I know exactly who in my friends list will think I’m crazy and call me an idiot, but there’s more at stake here than a decent hair cut. My gay friends took a brave stance coming out. My religious friends who post biblical scriptures are brave enough to face the non believers. I’m coming out and saying that I’m behind the Donald. Let the tomatoes fly.

His opinion is shared by surprisingly many of the conservative veterans I know, which is surprising considering many have been cheering him on after his comments regarding John McCain.

No City Council race for me this year

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015

A lot of people have been asking me when I’m going to run for Raleigh City Council. It’s humbling to be considered for such public service and I appreciate all of the interest and enthusiasm for my potential candidacy.

While I considered it strongly, I have decided this is not my year to run. My family is not ready for me to devote the level of time and attention needed to do the job right. I also want to hang on to the few years left that our kids are at home. They are growing so quickly if I blink I’ll miss it.

I’ll still be involved – you know you can’t keep me from meddling! I just will do so as a civilian for the time being.

Thanks for your support and encouragement. When the time is right you’ll be the first to know.

The genitalia vote

Friday, July 10th, 2015

A liberal friend posted this on her Facebook page in an effort to drum up support for Hillary Clinton for President:

IT is time to put our ducks in a row and support a woman IMHO. We all cashed in that chip and supported Barrack Obama the last time – and we did the right thing — even though he gave us Arnie Duncan!! I want to win. I want a woman to run. I like Bernie but come on – he will not be elected and he is not a woman — if we have a qualified woman does not she deserve our support? Where are all you affirmative action progressives? And bashing Hillary is harming our party and will harm our election chances and many many days the comments against her seem like “excuses” to support another man. Many comments are on the edge of sexist innuendos and often rude. I love Bernie’s brashness- boldness-his honesty and finger wagging BUT I do not want him to be my President – Hillary has experience as Sec. Of State alone that outranks his experience. I think it is time for a woman in the USA to be President. IMHO.

I was a bit taken aback that somehow Hillary was the Chosen One and that to point our her flaws is considered “bashing.” We are over a year away from the actual election, of course. There’s a long way to go. But there’s more.

Daily Mail invents critics of Facebook’s “Celebrate Pride” feature

Tuesday, June 30th, 2015

A friend shared a story on a website called the “Conservative Post” called “Everyone Who Changed Their Facebook Photos To Rainbow Just Got DUPED.” I’m always curious of what gets my righty friends all worked up so I read it.

Conservative Post got duped

Conservative Post got duped

Over a million people changed their facebook profile pictures to a rainbow filter in support of gay marriage.

New reports reveal that the “Celebrate Pride” tool may not have been the best idea…

According to Daily Mail, this tool was actually Facebook’s way of performing psychological testing on their users.

Cesar Hidalgo wrote on Facebook yesterday. “The question is, how long will it take for people to change their profile pictures back to normal.”

Experts say that by setting up the tool, Facebook was able to get an unprecedented insight on how to influence their users.


The Confederate monument has no place on the State House grounds

Wednesday, June 24th, 2015

The N&O’s Josh Shaffer wrote yesterday about keeping the Confederate monument on the state house grounds. I’ve mentioned before how garish I think the monument is so I disagree with Shaffer.

Perhaps we should retire the towering, out of place Confederate monument from the state house grounds to a place of honor in the Confederate portion of Oakwood Cemetery. Perched prominently on the state house grounds, it stands as a giant middle finger aimed towards equality.

North Carolina was a reluctant successionist, even then a Vale of Humility between Two Mountains of Conceit. This helped persuade Sherman from burning Raleigh to the ground. In light of our state’s lukewarm support for the Confederacy one has to wonder what the monument really celebrates.

It’s rare that I agree with conservative N&O columnist J. Peder Zane but even he has called for the monument to be removed. Because the N&O’s website has never figured out how to preserve historical links to its content, I am reposting his column here (as seen on

William Rivers Pitt | Don’t Believe the Hype: Candidate Clinton’s Sudden Populism

Wednesday, June 17th, 2015

William Rivers Pitt of Truthout compares the donor lists of Hillary Clinton and her would-be Republican challengers and finds little difference.

For reasons some may argue are not entirely fair, the Post article about those preposterous people helped crystallize a few things as I encompassed the rhetoric contained in Secretary Clinton’s big campaign speech this past weekend. Despite her long history of association with these kinds of people, Mrs. Clinton on Saturday deployed the sort of populist bombast that one might have heard at an Occupy Wall Street rally not so long ago.


Interesting, that … especially the stuff about hedge fund managers and CEOs and billionaires and fair compensation. Heady stuff; she sounded for all the world like Elizabeth Warren, or Bernie Sanders.

Yet a peek at her donor list is revealing. The roll-call of Mrs. Clinton’s top twenty campaign donors is topped by Citibank, and includes Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch and Credit Suisse Group … basically, a cohort of the worst people in the United States, the ones who gamed the system by buying politicians like her and then proceeded to burn the economy down to dust and ash while making a financial killing in the process.

Source: William Rivers Pitt | Don’t Believe the Hype: Candidate Clinton’s Sudden Populism

The Pulitzer Prize In Bullshit FUD Reporting Goes To… The Sunday Times For Its ‘Snowden Expose’ | Techdirt

Monday, June 15th, 2015

Rupurt Murdock’s Sunday Times published a whopper on Sunday in an effort to smear Edward Snowden and was promptly shredded by other journalists for its fabrications and shoddy reporting.

Let’s start with this. Soon after Daniel Ellsberg was revealed as the source behind the Pentagon Papers, White House officials started spreading rumors that Ellsberg was actually a Soviet spy and that he’d passed on important secrets to the Russians:None of it was true, but it was part of a concerted effort by administration officials to smear Ellsberg as a “Soviet spy” and a “traitor” when all he really did was blow the whistle on things by sharing documents with reporters.

Does that sound familiar? Over the weekend, a big story supposedly broke in the UK’s the Sunday Times, citing anonymous UK officials arguing that the Russians and Chinese got access to all the Snowden documents and it had created all sorts of issues, including forcing the UK to remove undercover “agents” from Russia. That story is behind a paywall, but plenty of people have made the text available if you’d like to read the whole thing.

Source: The Pulitzer Prize In Bullshit FUD Reporting Goes To… The Sunday Times For Its ‘Snowden Expose’ | Techdirt

Tom Apodaca: Senate’s enforcer uses muscle, humor to deliver GOP agenda | The Charlotte Observer The Charlotte Observer

Sunday, June 14th, 2015

Nice profile of North Carolina Senate majority leader Tom Apodaca.

In another life, Tom Apodaca chased knife-toting bail jumpers and once found himself in a cheap motel staring into the barrel of a shotgun.
The conservative Republican used to be a Jimmy Carter Democrat. And for a long time, Tom Apodaca wasn’t even Tom Apodaca. But now the Hendersonville Republican is the North Carolina Senate’s enforcer, the muscle for President Pro Tem Phil Berger of Eden.

Along with Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore, he’s one of the state’s three most influential lawmakers. As Rules Committee chair, he’s the ultimate gatekeeper. At one point last month, more than 460 House and Senate bills sat parked in his committee. Few measures become law without his blessing.

Source: Tom Apodaca: Senate’s enforcer uses muscle, humor to deliver GOP agenda | The Charlotte Observer The Charlotte Observer

City council dodges patio bar hot potato

Friday, June 12th, 2015

I don’t know what the Raleigh city staff was thinking. Honestly, this recent attempt to ban patio seating for bars was bound to blow up in their faces. Anyone who’s worked in city government and played the political game should’ve seen it coming, yet staff happily tossed this hot potato right into the laps of the Raleigh City Council.

In an election year. Yes, an election year.

Of course, a huge groundswell of bar owners and their fans spoke out against this draconian measure and Council wisely backed down, but it all could’ve been avoided.

Me? I don’t see much difference between a bar’s patrons clogging the sidewalks and a restaurant’s patrons clogging the sidewalks. Both businesses’ patrons are likely swilling alcohol and both businesses are contributing to the economy and lifestyle of the City of Oaks. If the city allows one, I see no reason why they should not allow the other.

As for people who moved downtown to enjoy a lively downtown scene and then complain that the lively downtown scene keeps them awake at night, I don’t know what they’re thinking, either.

City staff should’ve known better than to spring this on the public with little warning and on Council during election season. It wasn’t that long ago that the Council took the city staff’s bait and outlawed garbage disposals. Yeah, that went over well. Some staffers apparently didn’t learn the lesson.

I remember the ghost town Raleigh’s downtown used to be not that long ago. The fact that there’s controversy over the sidewalks being too popular is almost laughable. As far as problems go this is a nice one to have. I’m glad the city is taking another approach to this and I’m glad the Council didn’t fall into the trap of approving this.

How Joe Biden learned to work with Jesse Helms, who should’ve been his nemesis – Quartz

Saturday, June 6th, 2015

This May 17, vice-president Joe Biden address the graduates of Yale University at their Class Day. He spoke about the personal tragedies in his life, losing his wife and daughter to a car accident at age 30, which has been covered following the news of his son Beau’s death less than two weeks later. Beau and his brother survived the crash, and Biden almost resigned his newly won Senate seat before being talked out of it by Ted Kennedy, among others. Biden instead turned into an Amtrak commuter, coming home from Washington to Delaware every night to care for his sons as they recovered, and then to raise a family with his new wife, Jill.

But Biden also spoke about how he learned to work with someone who should have been his nemesis, the conservative senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina.

Source: How Joe Biden learned to work with Jesse Helms, who should’ve been his nemesis – Quartz