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NorthCarolinaLargeBy Martin Dyckman • Guest Columnist

Most of Europe’s aristocracy didn’t think the infant United States would last a decade, and there were Americans who doubted it also. Yet here we are, 240 years after bidding an unaffectionate farewell to George III and his progeny. 

Those years have fulfilled the prophecy of a foreign observer, the Baron Hyde de Neuville, who wrote after the First Congress had adjourned in 1791:

op frAs they say, the devil is in the details, and in this case the details are simply ridiculous.

A bill that has been sent to the N.C. Senate Finance Committee for consideration — Senate Bill 867 — is intended to keep children in our schools safe by requiring better background checks for potential teachers and spelling out specific crimes that would prevent them from being licensed. Among those are crimes one would expect — prostitution, homicide, misconduct in public office.

north carolinaIn late October 2015, Gov. Pat McCrory signed the “Protect North Carolina Workers Act,” requiring state and local governments to verify the immigration status of potential employees and to prohibit interference in the relationship of local law enforcement with federal agents investigating immigration violations. 

north carolinaThe North Carolina General Assembly reached the finish line a bit earlier than expected in their race to present GOP Gov. Pat McCrory with a budget before the long Independence Day holiday weekend.

fr presnellThe Great Smoky Mountains are known across the world for their beauty and the unique bluish haze produced in large part by local vegetation, but if N.C. Rep. Michele Presnell, R-Burnsville, has her way, the Smokies may soon become a lot smokier. 

north carolinaThe North Carolina General Assembly continues to haggle over specific provisions in the proposed 2016-17 state budget as they race to present a compromise spending plan to GOP Gov. Pat McCrory before the long Independence Day holiday weekend.

WCUHow would you like to pay a mere $500 a semester to attend Western Carolina University?

op frI’ve been observing something for years — though recently it has snowballed  — and it has always struck me as hypocritical: the intolerance of progressive liberals toward conservatives who hold diametrically opposing political and social views. The hypocrisy, of course, is that progressives espouse a philosophy of tolerance and openness. Bring a climate change denier, an evangelical Christian or a supply side, free market capitalist to the party, however, and many of my liberal friends will write off said individual’s political and social commentary before they’ve tossed back their first IPA.

op fr“I feel like a one-legged man at an ass kicking. They don’t care for me because I call them out. I try to inform the public of the truth, and they don’t like it.”

That’s the colorfully candid state Rep. Joe Sam Queen, D-Waynesville, who is back in Raleigh this week as the General Assembly kicks off its biennial short session, which is traditionally devoted to making a few budget tweaks and perhaps passing some noncontroversial legislation.

north carolinaBy Martin Dyckman • Guest Columnist

There are two major strains of conservatism in American politics, economic and social, and the former takes hideous advantage of the latter.

A case in point: North Carolina’s House Bill 2.

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  • Books that help bridge the political divide
    Books that help bridge the political divide Time for spring-cleaning.  The basement apartment in which I live could use a deep cleaning: dusting, washing, vacuuming. It’s tidy enough — chaos and I were never friends — but stacks of papers need sorting, bookcases beg to see their occupants removed and the shelves…
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