Sierra Club endorsements

Sierra Club endorsements have just been released. As follows:

SIERRA CLUB ENDORSES IN COMPETITIVE GENERAL ASSEMBLY PRIMARY RACES

Raleigh, NC: Today the Sierra Club endorsed the following candidates for their dedication and commitment to protecting North Carolina’s environment. Along with their endorsements the Sierra Club will lend its volunteer strength to their campaigns. Sierra Club volunteers will contact voters on their behalf and will speak to the public as often as possible about their exemplary environmental records. We look forward to working with them during the election and in the General Assembly.

NC Senate (Dem): Doug Berger (district .7- Wake)
Linda Garrou (district.32- Forsyth)
Malcolm Graham (district.40- Mecklenburg)

NC House (Dem): Rick Glazier (district.45- Cumberland)
Earline Parmon (dist.72- Forsyth)
Edith Warren (dist.8- Martin)
Marian McLawhorn (dist.9- Pitt)
Patsy Keever (dist.115- Buncombe)
Phil Haire (dist.119- Western NC)
Beverly Earle (dist.101- Mecklenburg)
Becky Carney (dist. 104- Mecklenburg)

NC House (Rep): Ruth Samuelson (dist.104- Mecklenburg)

# #

Last week, Sierra Club was pleased to announce our endorsement of Cal Cunningham for the U.S. Senate primary. Cunningham’s record of environmental leadership in the North Carolina General Assembly, and his commitment to continue his work protecting North Carolina’s environment, for our families and for our future, are the reasons we are endorsing him. We’ve also endorsed Rep. Etheridge, Rep. Shuler, Rep. Price, Rep. Watt and Rep. Miller in their reelection campaigns for U.S. Congress. The continued leadership of these members — from fighting to protect the Smoky Mountains in the west to helping to bring progressive transit options to our cities — are the reasons why they will have the continued support of Sierra Club members across the state.

Sierra club is the nation’s oldest, largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization. North Carolina’s state chapter has been established within the state for 40 years and currently represents approximately 15,000 members.

Thanks super wealthy people!

The pending tax fight is shaping up to be a war of semantics similar to the one in the mid-80s over whether cutting the increase in medicare is a cut (it is). Not extending the Bush tax cuts, which passed through reconciliation, will be cast as a tax hike and we’re likely to hear a lot about the poor little rich peoples this election cycle.
The basis given by George W. Bush and the usual cheerleaders for the massive tax cut for the wealthy was that the rich are the ones who create jobs and do the heavy lifting in the economy. David Brooks would even tell you that they work harder than Joe and Jane Schmo.
Well, we’re about 8 million jobs down since the cuts. The rich are richer and tens of millions of people are either drawing unemployment or are drastically underemployed.
Most of those fruits of those tax cuts didn’t do a bit for the working folks. It went straight to the casino.

Volcanic memories

Via Nate Silver so many months ago:

While some of the projects in the [stimulus] bill make sense, their legislation is larded with wasteful spending. It includes … $140 million for something called ‘volcano monitoring.’ Instead of monitoring volcanoes, what Congress should be monitoring is the eruption of spending in Washington, DC. — Bobby Jindal

Wasteful spending.
Idiots.

Tax on

Already looking ahead to the tax battles of the fall?
Here’s a nice Reuters primer on what’s likely to happen, with this wonderfully succinct breakdown of the positions of the parties:

Democrats favor extension of the tax cuts, enacted in 2001 and 2003, for middle and lower income individuals only. Republicans say raising taxes on the wealthy will hurt the stock market and choke growth.

The New Silent Majority

One of the great advantages of not watching cable news is not having to hear just how loud the noise machines can crank. There’s idiocy and then there’s idiocy at high volume.
But since it makes good teevee that’s what you get.
The rest of the county – the 300 million or so people who do not watch cable news – are no doubt a little figety watching all this.
We live in an age where the cameras belong to the cranky and those quick to offer an opinion rather than reason a point, or worse yet they twist whatever is happening to validate a long held view. Oh, and the rules of engagement say you can lie and probably not be challenged. Small wonder so many people are sitting it out.
The question coming up is just how silent the majority of people are going to be when they have their opportunity to vote. Will this poisonous atmosphere suppress turnout? Will the tens of thousands of new voters from 2008 return to the polls? How will campaign finance changes affect specific races?
This will be a test of whether the over-the-top rhetoric has sunk in – whether it is truly politically persuasive enough to make a difference or just froth and foam o’er much more real and powerful currents.

SEIU gathering petitions for third party in NC

SEIU is sending out petition gatherers to clear the way for a third party in North Carolina. Been hearing bits about this lately, now Greg Sargent and TPM are spilling the details:
Greg:

It’s War: SEIU Starting Third Party In North Carolina
In a shot across the bow of Dems, the labor powerhouse SEIU is starting a new third party in North Carolina that hopes to field its own slate of candidates, part of an effort to make the Democratic Party more reliable on issues important to labor, I’m told.

TPM:

It seems organized labor is no longer content to leave its political fortunes in the hands of its traditional ally, the Democratic Party. The SEIU announced today that the it’s launching its own political party in North Carolina, and it plans to to field candidates on the ballot this fall.

Well, I wondered what it was going to take to get me off the extended hiatus . . .

Film at 11

Update:
Char-O’s Jim Morrill has more.