Sunday morning post

Good morning. It is summerish here in the Piedmont. Here are list and links to various items from around the state.

– Kissell catches a break: SEIU backed candidate steps aside.
– Mark Binker, and Jim Morrill on the Senate debate
Dems wrap up budget negotiations.
WNC employment picture via Cit-Times
– Zombie Transpark rises: This N&O take on the Transpark includes an interesting reminder about the Escheat Fund loan.

Thoughtful school standards

Some very useful words published in The Daily Texan from UT grad and philosophy and political science professor David Williams on the new textbook standards in Texas. The state’s guidelines now include teaching the influence of Charles-Louis de Secondat Montesquieu, Voltaire, Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Thomas Aquinas on the American Way or whatever you call it.

So the board is to be congratulated for its keen and renewed commitment to social equality as a way of sustaining this great democratic republic. Its emphasis on the great thinkers who inform our tradition ensures that future Texans will continue to be vigilant against extreme wealth, extreme poverty and a dangerously myopic self-interest that not only offends the Christian tradition, but also the democratic republic itself. I encourage all secondary school social studies teachers across the great state of Texas to consider the Board’s directions to communicate these lessons to students with the urgency these guidelines and our fragile times demand.

Watt fundraiser under scrutiny

The Hill reports that the Office of Congressional Ethics is looking why an amendment to financial regulatory reform legislation dealing with automobile dealers was withdrawn by Congressman Mel Watt. The timing of a fundraiser in Watts honor two days before he pulled the amendment has drawn interest.
The probe by OCE is looking into the actions of five Republicans and three Democrats as the legislation was coming to a vote.
TPM has more.

Chambers endorses Marshall

This from the Marshall campaign:

Charlotte, N.C. – Julius Chambers, trailblazing legal advocate and civil rights icon, today announced his support for Secretary of State Elaine Marshall in the U.S. Senate runoff. Through his Charlotte-based law firm and as Director Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Chambers litigated numerous landmark civil rights cases and was instrumental in dismantling many of the legal structures that upheld racial segregation and discrimination.

“I’m proud to have the support and endorsement of Julius Chambers,” said Marshall. “He’s dedicated his life and career to creating a more just and equitable society. I look forward to representing those same values in the U.S. Senate.”

Stop the cap on muni wireless

Good old backscratching-payback-whathaveyou in the NC Senate.
Stop the Cap is on this and has some very good questions to bring up with your elected representatives:

We need you to again write and call your legislators. We have been told by numerous sources that your input has been very effective in pushing back S1209. The more North Carolina consumers speak out against this anti-consumer bill, the less likely it will ever become law.

Here are the points you need to raise in your next letter or phone call:

1. Why is the legislature still spending time on this unnecessary, anti-consumer legislation? S1209 is wanted by large phone and cable companies. You want your town or city to have every option open to deliver better service if a consensus is reached for it in your community. The current system already provides effective checks and balances. We don’t need S1209.
2. Studying broadband issues is fine, but placing a moratorium on municipal broadband projects in the meantime is completely unacceptable.
3. Corning’s plant in Hickory, North Carolina produces 40 percent of the world’s supply of fiber optic cable. Passing S1209 impedes fiber projects in North Carolina, hurting our own workers and state economy.
4. North Carolina needs all the broadband expansion it can get. We are ranked 41st out of 50 states. Passing S1209 preserves mediocre broadband service in our state indefinitely.

Unless we want to just go ahead an build a broadband aristocracy.