They knew this would happen before the bill was ever passed, but they pushed it through anyway. They knew there was really no voter fraud in the old North State long before the bill was even sponsored, but they didn’t care. They knew that we would challenge them in court no matter what the cost, and still they made it happen. Continue reading
On Sunday, July 21, 2013, Thom Tillis and Phil Berger, Republican leaders of the NC House and Senate respectively, reached a compromise on our state budget. The grizzly details of our march back toward a neo-feudal, libertarian paradise is documented here and here (you really should read these reports).
Both chambers still need to sign off on the deal, but it’s pretty much a forgone conclusion that it will pass and be signed by Governor
Art Pope Pat McCrory.
Among the most egregious work in the document are the insults to teachers across our state. This budget is so bad, even the most hardcore Republican teachers on my wife’s Facebook network are up in arms over it (sorry ladies, but you voted for this, despite our warnings).
The comment below is perhaps the best summation of the damage this legislature of Republican super-majorities is about to do to education and educators across our state.
“It is a tragic day in NC for our public schools, their teachers and students. The cuts to education reflect a very aggressive attack on public education. Eliminating $110 million for teacher assistants, eliminating teacher tenure, eliminating class size limits for K-3, no raise again this year, all of these unnecessary cuts wipe out three decades of steady progress. The most damaging is allowing for our hard earned tax dollars to be transferred to private schools. The privatization of public schools threatens the very cornerstone of our democracy and violates our state constitution. This is beyond comprehension and represents the worst public policy I have ever witnessed in NC History. These cuts to public education will have a direct impact at the classroom level, impacting every single one of our 1.5 million public school children. The General Assembly has abandoned the heart and soul of what makes our schools work and has set us on a course that will end public education as a common good in NC. We hope the business community will realize today that this attack on public education is an attack on our economic viability.”
Yevonne Brannan of Public Schools First NC, July 21, 2013
My friend James, over at BlueNC, made this comment the other day.
It is time to disengage. Democracy in North Carolina has been corrupted to the point of no return. By engaging with the system, we offer Republicans the veneer of legitimacy. By offering our ideas and arguments, we provide cover, the opportunity for them to say they’ve heard from both sides and made informed decisions.
… Ask any insider in state government and you will quickly discover that there is absolutely nothing to be gained from trying to talk with Republicans in Raleigh. Not one god damned thing. So stop even trying.
Instead, let’s give them all the rope they want. Miles and miles of it. Let them run their free-market experiment all the way into oblivion. The proof of the pudding will be in the tasting, and until average North Carolina voters get a mouthful of crap custard, there is nothing to be done.
Get out of the way. Let Republicans wreak havoc. That is the most effective strategy for rebuilding our moral foundation. Yes people will be hurt in the meantime. But nothing you can do in terms of engagement in Raleigh will change that in the slightest. In fact, our engagement may even be making it worse by given Republicans the cover of legitimacy.
Disengage. Stop talking to them. Create a shadow system with direct connections to the people who matter most: the millions of average citizens all across our state.
I’m inclined to agree with this strategy as well. We’ve tried to work with these people for years, and it’s gotten us nowhere.
We tried reason, negotiation, appeals to their better nature, whatever that is. Nothing works!
Maybe it’s time we did just stand back and let them have their way. Stop trying to stop them from driving us all over a cliff into oblivion and just let’em do it. It’s not like we can stop them anyway.
A short editorial in the Winston-Salem Journal today sums up why the working people of North Carolina can’t get a fair hearing from House Speaker Thom Tillis.
Tillis has had a relatively short career in politics. He comes from the business sector, where employees often don’t disagree with the boss. So maybe more anti-democratic behavior is what we can expect from this speaker who says he’ll run our government like a business.
Tillis comes from the business sector, which means he’s a ruthless corporate sociopath, more inclined to sell his own children into prostitution for a better quarterly profit margin than to listen to the grievances of a bunch of ordinary working stiffs who don’t like his policies. That’s what’s known as having a business friendly attitude, and it’s standard behavior almost anywhere you work in the Corporate States of America.
Here’s a little commentary from the local politics scene where I live. Thom Tillis is the Republican Speaker of the NC House of Representatives. Last week he called a special session to overturn our governor’s veto of a racist voter ID law he and his cronies wanted to pass. He called the session to order an hour or so after midnight, and conveniently waited until several of his colleagues in the Democratic party tied up with such inconveniences as personal illness, hospitalization, and death of family members.
That was bad enough, but then, after failing to overturn the veto, Tillis and Company proceeded to vote on other measures, in the middle of the night, without previous notice and without most of the opposition party present.
Yeah, Thom Tillis is the genuine article, a grade A piece of shit.
It turns out that Mr. Tillis actually reads “liberal” blogs, though I doubt he reads this one. I suppose he does so to keep tabs on those who make it their mission in life to educate our mostly Republican electorate about what a sorry, sociopathic piece of crap they elected in Mr. Tillis. My buddy James over at BlueNC, perhaps the best of the “liberal” blogs in our state, put together the following bit of insightful truth.
Come on North Carolina, we can do better than Thom Tillis!
(SOURCE: BlueNC) If you haven’t had a chance to keep up with North Carolina news lately, you missed a big bang when Tea Party Republicans overrode the governor’s veto to take more rights away from teachers. And they did it in the middle of the night.
When the state’s newspaper rightly called them out, Speaker Thom Tillis threw a hissyfit.
Tomorrow will be the last day I receive the Charlotte Observer at home after nearly 14 years. I decided if the Charlotte Observer is going to reduce itself to being a liberal blog, I’ll just read it online like I do ProgressNC, BlueNC, and the like. They are all kind of like road kill. You try not to look at, you do anyway, then you regret it.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker. You’ve just described how citizens of North Carolina feel everyday watching your ongoing perversion of democracy. Good on reporter Mark Binker of the Greensboro News Record for calling out your revisionist bullshit.
Tillis played hard ball and his team won. Good on him. But if he’s going to play rough and tumble, shouldn’t expect a bit of push back? The game was played in the middle of the night and sausage making doesn’t look all that nice when people lay it out in the sunshine. To use a management aphorism that Tillis might appreciate, if you think the news output stinks, consider the input with which we were working.
Consider the input indeed, Mr. Speaker. And if you don’t understand that it stinks you’re either a psychopath or a self-deluding liar.
Both seem to apply.
(SOURCE: ThinkProgress) During a recent public forum at the University of North Carolina, student Jeff DeLuca challenged North Carolina House Speaker Thom Tillis (R) for supporting the proposed constitutional amendment that bans same-sex marriage, civil unions, and domestic partnerships. DeLuca pointed out that the amendment sends a message to young gay people like him that they are not wanted in the state:
DELUCA: I just want you to know that you are sending a message to many young people like myself — people across this country — that they’re not wanted here in North Carolina. That’s what [Rep.] Jim Forrester said when he brought this forward — that the goal of this amendment was to keep LGBT people out of North Carolina, to scare them away. And I think that that’s a really cynical and divisive thing to be doing when so many people are out of work — straight and gay.
Tillis stood by his opposition to marriage equality, but continued to express some ambivalence about the amendment because he now feels it may be government overreach. He previously tried to absolve himself of responsibility for the amendment’s passage in the legislature, despite the fact he was the one who scheduled it for a vote.