Weekly Briefing

Weekly Briefing

Top Story Weekly Briefing

Right-wing extremism hits new lows but “responsible” conservatives remain largely silent

These are, by any fair estimation, divided times in our country. Especially since the onset of the pandemic, the level of venom and bitterness that’s gripped millions of Americans is a sometimes-frightening phenomenon to behold. This troubling reality has clearly been fueled at times by the relative anonymity provided by internet, but it’s also the case that many of those voicing and spurring on aggression, hatred, and even physical violence are only too happy put their names and faces out there.

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

Ruthless and relentless: NC GOP election rigging continues apace with new voter suppression bills

You’d think, at some point, the folks who lead the North Carolina Republican Party might experience just the tiniest twinge of sheepishness. Indeed, one can at least imagine a conversation in which, upon being presented with the latest demand to draft yet another voter suppression bill, a still marginally idealistic young aide might muster the gumption to speak up.

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

Judge’s order to up school funding is legally, practically, and morally correct

It’s about time. What took so long? Better late than never. Those are some of the obvious reactions that caring and thinking people have had in recent days to last week’s order from state Superior Court Judge David Lee directing state legislators to pry open the state’s massive savings account and pony up the first $1.7 billion-plus installment toward bringing the state’s broken public school system into compliance with the state constitution.

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

President Biden’s remarkable record of accomplishment under nearly impossible circumstances

It’s been almost 90 years since humorist Will Rogers uttered his famous lament: “I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat.” Sadly, for that party and, no doubt, quite amusingly for those otherwise affiliated, the observation would still hold were Rogers alive today.

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

For the good of the country and the planet, Democrats in Congress must stick together

There are several hugely important items that were left out of the compromise domestic policy plan that President Biden urged Congress to pass last week before he left for the global climate change summit in Scotland. The list, which if common sense and broadly shared common good thinking had been ascendant in American politics and policy in recent years...

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

The political right and the myth of color-blind capitalism

By any fair assessment, the United States has come a long way over the last century and a half in overcoming its original sins of slavery and institutionalized racism. A century and a half ago – the span of just two lifetimes – millions of Black Americans were held in bondage by force of law and treated as chattel property because of their skin color.

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

Congressman David Price’s retirement highlights the conundrum of public service in the modern era

Veteran Triangle-area Congressman David Price called it a career yesterday and revealed that he will not seek re-election in 2022. The announcement signals the impending conclusion of an outstanding political career for an honorable public official who has served various iterations of his Triangle-based Fourth Congressional District with distinction for more than three decades.

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

Mark Robinson’s enablers and the actual filth that he and they ignore

Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson is officially the highest-ranking Republican official in state government. It’s expected that he will run for Governor in 2024.  But who’s kidding who? Robinson is certainly not the leader of the North Carolina GOP or even close to its most important or influential member.

...
Read more 0
Defending Democracy Top Story Weekly Briefing

The North Carolina redistricting charade

It’s hard to pinpoint the most maddening thing about the rushed, convoluted and opaque redistricting process that North Carolina Republican legislative leaders have been running in recent weeks, but there are several leading contenders. First has been the disregard for the pandemic. When so much of modern life has moved online due to COVID-19, it’s ridiculous that the public was forced to attend crowded in-person hearings...

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

The sound of crickets chirping: The discouraging response of NC conservatives to new Trump coup attempt revelations

The United States of America will celebrate its 250th anniversary as a free and democratic republic in less than five years on July 4, 2026. At least that’s the plan. Amazingly, however, this event appears no longer to be a sure thing.

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

Two conflicts of interest on the NC Supreme Court that should not be swept under the rug

There is, of course, nothing new about the idea that blood runs thick in politics. The list of prominent American political figures and families who have championed and facilitated the political careers of children, spouses, siblings, nieces, nephews, in-laws, and the like is a long one. The current North Carolina political scene is peppered with examples – from former Lt. Governor Dan Forest...

...
Read more 0
Original Commentary Top Story Weekly Briefing

Dire school bus driver shortage is emblematic of the GOP-authored crisis in our public schools

Zac Campbell paused suddenly and took a minute to gather himself, while colleagues shuffled toward him to touch his back in support. The emotion that can sometimes accompany the act of baring one’s soul in front of a phalanx of TV cameras, photographers, and notepad-bearing journalists on a controversial matter of public policy had briefly caught up with the veteran Wake County school bus driver.

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

America dumbs down freedom, with disastrous consequences

Death and tragedy were front and center in the news again last week. In Winston-Salem, a young high school student was shot and killed by another child. Only a few hours later, tragedy was mercifully avoided at a Raleigh high school when two guns were taken from a student who had brought them to campus.

. ...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

Who’s kidding who? Setting the record straight on the political ancestry of modern American racism

“Why do you pick on Republicans so much? Don’t you know it was the Democrats who were the authors of Jim Crow?” That's one the gripes frequently voiced by my conservative correspondents these days when I write about race and racism – especially when it comes to barbs directed at GOP leaders over racially-charged policy decisions like making it harder to vote, punishing protesters, or denying access to healthcare.

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

State lawmaker’s take on climate change is sadly emblematic of a toxic worldview

It’s relatively rare that North Carolina lawmakers utter illuminating statements during committee discussions, but it happened last week at the Senate confirmation hearing for Governor Cooper’s latest nominee to head the Department of Environmental Quality, Elizabeth Biser. Paul Newton is a Republican senator from Cabarrus and Union Counties and during an exchange with Biser, he reiterated an argument that he and many others of the right have previously championed...

...
Read more 0
Top Story Weekly Briefing

Several days late and billions of dollars short: Another untimely and inadequate budget takes shape at the General Assembly

The North Carolina House finally approved a proposed budget bill last week for the fiscal year that began six weeks ago. Now comes a period of negotiation with the Senate, which passed its version a few weeks before, and after that one hopes, some measure of legitimate give and take with Gov. Cooper.

...
Read more 0
Send this to a friend