Both parties agree... North Carolina is a battleground state

The Republicans and the Democrats now agree that NC is an important battleground state because the race for president and state offices is so close. The Republicans just agreed to target our state with additional money from the RNC.

Since Orange County is so heavily Democratic, many folks might be wondering how they can get involved to make sure that Kerry/Edwards and Bowles get elected despite the influx of national Republican money. One great start is to attend a precinct party or to host a precinct party on September 9.

The Orange County Dems are shooting to have at least 30 precinct parties where folks can gather, eat, vent about the state of the nation, and plan next steps for getting out the vote in their neighborhoods and beyond. Already they have 9 parties. Just go to for more info or to sign up to volunteer.



well, if you are looking for cheap ways to get involved in the electoral process on a non-partisan basis, cut and paste the text below and e-mail it to friends, or post it to bulletin boards and listservs where such posts are appropriate. Ask recipients to forward it to their friends. Since voter registration is now "self-service", help people get served.

In Orange County, address changes are so common that making sure people already registered report them is almost as important as getting new voters to register.

Of course, you can also add a partisan message to the text below.



If you are a US citizen and a North Carolina resident, you need to register to vote on or before October 8, 2004 in order to vote in the Presidential election this fall. (the form needs to be postmarked by October 8).

Voter registration forms can be picked up at public libraries, board of elections offices, or can be printed out online. All forms need to be either mailed in or delivered in person.

You can go to the following site and print out voter registration forms for you and your family and friends: click on "voter registration forms", then "NC English" or "NC Spanish" or go directly to: for the NC English form

If you are not sure if you are currently registered to vote in North Carolina or if you need to check what address you are registered at, go to:
and click on "check your voter registration here"


If you have never registered to vote, fill out the bottom half of the form, after checking the box "new registration"

If you are currently registered to vote in North Carolina but have moved to a new county, or are registered to vote in another state and have moved to North Carolina, this is a NEW voter registration. Fill out the top of the form to cancel your prior registration, and the bottom to register in the new county.

If you are already registered to vote in North Carolina but have moved WITHIN THE SAME COUNTY since you registered, you need to notify your county board of elections of your new address in order to vote in the Presidential election this fall. Check the box on the form "change of information".

New residents can register to vote now, as the requirement is 30 days of residency by November 2.

If you are an Orange County (Chapel Hill and Carrboro) resident, the form can be mailed to:
Orange County Board of Elections
P.O. Box 220
Hillsborough, North Carolina 27278

If you are a Durham County resident, the form can be mailed to:
Durham County Board of Elections
PO Box 868
Durham, NC 27702

If you are a Chatham County resident, the form can be mailed to:
Chatham County Board of Elections
PO Box 111
Pittsboro, NC 27312

If you are a Wake County resident, the form can be mailed to:
Wake County Board of Elections
P O Box 695
Raleigh, NC 27602-0695

If you reside in some other North Carolina county, go to
to find the appropriate address

If you have a North Carolina drivers license, list the number at the appropriate place on the form and you will avoid having to show ID at the polls.

If you do NOT have a North Carolina drivers license, you may avoid showing ID at the polls by mailing in WITH your application a photocopy of a current valid photo ID card. It can NOT be an out-of-state drivers license. If you do not mail in the photocopy, bring ID to the polls with you when you vote.

The political party question on the form determines which party primary you would be eligible to vote in in 2006.


The OWASA & Lincoln Democratic precincts meet weekly in order to register new voters and to get new volunteers to help get out the vote. People from other precincts are invited to join us and/or to use the same meeting time and/or location.

It's Mondays at 7 P.M., in the lounge part of the Speakeasy, part of Tyler's, in downtown Carrboro (also near the Open Eye cafe). From there we go off in small groups to different neighborhoods.

The idea is to maximize turnout in Orange County. We've had good results so far.

The AirAmericaRadio sponsored 'Shout Out' will be celebrated @ 10pm @ 'the Cave'.

Ruby has suggested several alternatives, "Hiding, crying, screaming, and throwing up" but if you want to avoid voiding or magnify the effect, you might want to join the party.

Which candidate will do a better job of reducing the overall cost of healthcare and increasing overall coverage? I don't think
our compassionate conservative.

Mr. Blog, from Webster:

"ambulance chaser: a lawyer or lawyer's agent who incites accident victims to sue for damages"

From here :

"During the campaign, opponents tried unsuccessfully to criticize him for turning away 35 to 40 cases for each one he accepted." Lauch gave him hell for not chasing enough ambulances, but now he's a chaser?

How moral is it to know that over the life of your product, say a car with a defect that causes 1 in 400,000 gas tanks to explode spontaneously, you'd avoid fixing that problem?

And those poor, poor

"Chapel Hill-based Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina recorded the fourth highest increase in profit of the nation's 56 Blues plans in 2003, according to Jupiter, Fla.-based Weiss Ratings.

BCBSNC posted a 2003 net profit of $165.4 million, compared to a net profit of $17.8 million in 2002. The net increase of $147.6 million was tied for fourth with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, which also saw an increase of $147.6 million from 2002 to 2003.

Blue Cross Blue Shield plans, as a group, produced a $5.4 billion profit, which is a $2.1 billion, or 63 percent, increase compared to the $3.3 billion profit recorded in 2002.

Of the 56 Blues plans, 51, or 91.1 percent, reported positive earnings in 2003.

Weiss Ratings found that the nation's health maintenance organizations nearly doubled their profits during 2003.

The financial ratings and analysis firm said HMOs, overall, earned $10.2 billion, an 86 percent increase over the $5.5 billion reported in 2002.

In analyzing HMOs' earnings, Weiss said it found one company, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, reported a $1.1 billion increase in profit, or one-fifth of the industry's net profit improvement. "

Here's a
take on what kind of an evil doer Edwards can be:

"The defining case in Edwards' legal career wrapped up that same year. In 1993, a five-year-old girl named Valerie Lakey had been playing in a Wake County, N.C., wading pool when she became caught in an uncovered drain so forcefully that the suction pulled out most of her intestines. She survived but for the rest of her life will need to be hooked up to feeding tubes for 12 hours each night. Edwards filed suit on the Lakeys' behalf against Sta-Rite Industries, the Wisconsin corporation that manufactured the drain. Attorneys describe his handling of the case as a virtuoso example of a trial layer bringing a negligent corporation to heel. Sta-Rite offered the Lakeys $100,000 to settle the case. Edwards passed. Before trial, he discovered that 12 other children had suffered similar injuries from Sta-Rite drains. The company raised its offer to $1.25 million. Two weeks into the trial, they upped the figure to $8.5 million. Edwards declined the offer and asked for their insurance policy limit of $22.5 million. The day before the trial resumed from Christmas break, Sta-Rite countered with $17.5 million. Again, Edwards said no. On January 10, 1997, lawyers from across the state packed the courtroom to hear Edwards' closing argument, "the most impressive legal performance I have ever seen," recalls Dayton. Three days later, the jury found Sta-Rite guilty and liable for $25 million in economic damages (by state law, punitive damages could have tripled that amount). The company immediately settled for $25 million, the largest verdict in state history. For their part, Edwards and Kirby earned the Association of Trial Lawyers of America's national award for public service."

Breck Girl Edwards cuts both ways in this state for Kerry. I know THREE registered Dems who are Doctors. All three will vote for Bush. They have been screwed badly enough already by Edward's success hijacking the legal system to stuff his wallet with cash from his career as an ambulance chaser.

I guess there are a bunch of lawyers out there who will vote for him to keep the pipleline open.

"With John Edwards in their sights, Republican spin doctors are railing against an epidemic of "lawsuit abuse" -- but the facts don't support the rhetoric. "

The facts according to Doctors who practice at Duke in fact do support this claim. The Docs I know are all registered Dems who have never voted for a Republican. being used as a fact reference gives me a chuckle. Can't you find anything in the Indy?

I'm afraid it's all over for Kerry. The truth has finally been revealed as evidenced by this recent letter to the editor in the recent HeraldSun from Mr. Hauck:

"...Kerry returns to the United States in April 1969 (and is not active in the anti-war movement).

Kerry honeymoons in Paris in May 1970 and while in Paris, meets with the North Vietnamese (enemy) peace negotiators.

John Kerry becomes involved with the antiwar movement in September 1970 and by April 1971 he is leading the movement, including "testifying" about his and his fellow soldiers' atrocities.

I have yet to see an explanation of what he discussed with the North Vietnamese while his country was at war with them and why he only became involved in the anti-war movement after meeting with his country's enemy. "

Of course, Mr. Hauck has stumbled onto something that Kerry's "handlers" have been trying to hide for the last 20 years. It's always been known Kerry has a lot to hide. For instance, starting his honeymoon night there's an approximately a 36 hour period where he and his wife 'disappeared' into their room. If you look at the hotels register (as I saw posted on some RNC 'blog), you'll see that a Dr. Manchuria occupied the suite next door. A quick check of Dr. Manchuria's credentials (available here) show this diabolical agent dabbled in mind control. Luckily he was apprehended by in 1980.

This brave citizen, after reviewing these secret documents helped reveal that Kerry was programmed to be our future president, a president strangely sensitive to various Oriental countries!

Thank you Mr. Hauck.

"The Docs I know are all registered Dems who have never voted for a Republican."

Does that mean they voted for Edwards in 98?

C'mon Todd. Did you read the Mother Jones article and look at their references or did you just reactively ignore the article because the source doesn't support your political perspective? You started off this discussion by making a totally unsubstantiated claim. Where's your data? is one article that quickly came up in Google.

Ask any OBGYN, anesthesiologist, or cancer Doc about this subject and you will get the same perspective as above.

Will, I don't know who the three I have referenced voted for in 98 Senate race. I suspect not Edwards now that you mention it.

I skimmed the MotherJones BS article.

Folks, please try to keep the conversation LOCAL. Thanks.

"Lawyer bashing costs us all. The consequence of focusing on lawyers instead of issues, and placing blame on one party to a system that we all need, is to deny us the meaningful debate that is necessary to elect competent public officials. More importantly, lawyer bashing often results in the deterioration of rights so many of us often need. Next time a politician starts criticizing trial lawyers, ask what is proposed as an alternative. "

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, there are no lawyers in my family, I have never taken a class from a law school, I have never been married to or in love with a lawyer, and the only times I have ever hired a lawyer was for housing closings and a divorce. :)

Here for a rundown on a good sampling of the cases John Edwards won (along with a link, requiring a free registration, to his entire legal record):

And an analysis of the arguments linking jury awards, and the work of plaintiff's attorneys, to the cost of carrying malpractice insurance. (And a discussion of other aspects of medical care financing, and whether judgments for plaintiffs have that much effect on the cost to doctors.)


*The total cost of medical malpractice insurance is less than two percent of all spending on health care in the United States. And medical malpractice litigation has been a part of American law for over 200 years.

*Why are the premiums rising? The professionals cite large malpractice damages awards. But the correlation is complex. For example, medical malpractice awards rose in the early and mid-'90s, while medical malpractice premiums stayed flat -- and even fell.

*Moreover, many factors -including, but not limited to, malpractice judgments - contribute to insurance pricing. We know this because there have been at least two previous cycles of steep increases in premiums in the recent past, once during the '70's and once during the '80's. The medical system survived these shocks. What we have learned in the aftermath of these crises is that the medical malpractice market is strongly affected by changes in the investment environment as well as errors in judgment about how to increase market share and the management of the reserves needed to pay out claims.

*Consider California's example. In 1975, the state passed tort reform statute designed to reduce medical malpractice costs. But it was not until 1988 -- when the state began to directly regulate malpractice insurers - that insurance rates actually began to decline. This suggests that factors other than damage awards are most responsible for increases in malpractice premiums.

*Nevertheless, it's true that rising damage awards are indeed a factor in rising insurance costs. According to the Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics, the typical (or median) damage award won by plaintiffs in medical malpractice suits has been increasing - and indeed, almost doubling, over the past decade - from $253,000 in 1992, to $431,000 in 2001. (The sample set for the comparison was the civil trials conducted in the 75 largest counties in the U.S.)

This is an annual increase of 8%. (By comparison, however, the average annual increase in national expenditures on health care is approximately 17%, and the average annual increase in the cost of medical malpractice premiums and self-funded reserves has moved almost in lockstep with the medical inflation rate.)

*In addition, more significant than this comparatively modest increase, is the fact that the total money awarded, as a sum of all the suits combined, actually declined slightly. Using the same DOJ statistics - taken from the same 75 counties - in 1992, plaintiffs won 403 cases for a total of $754 million in damages, but in 2001 plaintiffs won 292 cases, for a total of $596 million.

While I'm not sure that evil trial lawyers are a local issue, I do think blindly accepting and perpetuating political assaults of any kind are very important point of discussion. Blogs as we all know have been popularized by failures of mass media journalists. This is the place where we should be challenging statements such as trial lawyers have hijacked the legal system. The lines between fact, urban myth, and dirty political tricks is very thin. One way to tip the political scale in North Carolina is to identify those urban myths/political tricks being capitalized upon by some Republicans and offer up good reasons to challenge them. In academia we call it critical thinking.

Insurance rates are driven overall by the performance of insurance company investments in stocks, bonds, real estate etc.

When the net equity of the insurance company declines (because of bad stock investments) the insurance rates must rise to offset the losses. Losses from payouts on insurance policies are an incidental matter.

And as NCCU Torts professor Mark Morris says, "At least part of the cause of the medical malpractice litigation epidemic is medical malpractice."

Whatever happened to your personal responsibility theme, GOP?

some interesting stats:

Voter registration for the one week period ending 9/3/2004 and the four-week period ending 9/3/2004 (net, new minus cancellations), calculated from:

WEEK 323 31 218 57 575
56.2% 5.4% 37.9% 9.9%

4 WEEKS 1221 397 846 233 2482
49.2% 16.0% 34.1% 9.4%

I had to look back at the original posting because the discussion wandered just a little bit! ;-)

The wandering itself was of such a nature as to inspire me even more to work for Democrats, both local and national.

Anyway, MoveOn is holding a meeting tonight at the Library at 7:30 - that might provide an opportunity for working locally for the good side of the force.

I just ran a query on the OCDP database last night - the OCDP now has over 1,160 volunteers! So go ahead and rant, right wingers! Many of your neighbors are working to put the brakes on your out-of-control government.

Bush has dropped to a 3% lead in NC, his lowest so far. (Margin of error: 4%.)

I've been trying to find polling data on the NC governor and senate races. Does anyone know how those races are going?

Thanks Fred. Looks like Easley has a very comfortable lead but Bowles may be in trouble. I've been surprised by how few Bowles signs I've seen around. We 'liberals' may not have put enough energy into the senate race.

N and O

"President Bush is leading Sen. John Kerry by 50 percent to 47 percent, according to a new Survey USA poll conducted for WTVD in Durham and WBTV in Charlotte."

Reported on WTVD tonight, if you look at polling that includes newly registered voters and cellphone users, Kerry leads %53/%44.

Throw in this from the Asheville Citizen-Times: "A late surge of more than 100,000 voter registrations has pushed the number of North Carolinians eligible to vote in the Nov. 2 general election to nearly 5.5 million." and "Democrats in particular have benefited from last-minute registrations, with 45,880 of those added to the state's rolls between Oct. 9 and Saturday affiliating themselves with the party." and the Mason/Dixon looks more and more anemic.

Talking about "more" Mr. Bloggg, with your support of the troops, how can you support a candidate that promises "more of the same", where the same would be "more" of a train wreck in Iraq than we have now? Where "more" means less and less protection for our troops? Where "more" means "more and more" cuts in our veteran and troop family support programs? Your candidate and his team are shamefully incompetent and irresponsible, why not bow out if you can't vote for Kerry?

I know this is an older post, but ALL the polls have taken NC out of play for Monseur Kerry as Fred's link shows:

I take back the term "out of play" above, replaced with "in the lead".

Yep, at 50-47 with a margin of error of 4, all you can say is that he has a "slight" lead. The gap is definitely closing....

Mr. Blogg, you're wishful thinking.

NC was already going Kerry and now with Pat Robertson spilling the beans (that Bush has spilt his beans), there's even more reason than ever for conservatives to stay away from the polls.

Bush promises four more years of death, poverty, joblessness, corruption, deficits, evisceration of the Constitution, lies, fear mongering, etc.

I think a lot of NC citizens realize those aren't their values. NC might be forgiven for being fooled once, but not twice. I think that even more of NC's citizens understand that....

Will--my wishful thinking is paying off... 51% Bush, 43% Kerry in NC's Mason Dixon Poll just released.

Thankfully NC as a state is nothing like the People's Republic of Chapel Hill/Carrboro!!!

The troops, like myself support Bush at a ratio of 3:1, or 4:1 depending on the polls you look at. and

Keep getting your talking points from the Communist Party USA:

Why is it that I always support my statements with facts, and you think you can just throw around crap without a hint of evidence or proof? Never a link to anything. At least show a link to the Indy or something to help back up your assertions.

At least we know you are all on the same page with Communist Party USA working from the same set of "facts".

As for this election, I will concede that it's going to be very close both in NC, and the country.

Mr. Blogggg, I generally do provide links to the quotes, so here they are:

"A Survey USA poll of 627 likely voters within the past week has Bush at 50 percent and John Kerry at 47 percent, with a margin of error of four percentage points. Bush led by six points, 50-44, in a Research 2000 poll taken for The News & Observer late last month."

"President Bush is leading Sen. John Kerry by 50 percent to 47 percent, according to a new Survey USA poll conducted for WTVD in Durham and WBTV in Charlotte."

"Democrats in particular have benefited from last-minute registrations, with 45,880 of those added to the state's rolls between Oct. 9 and Saturday affiliating themselves with the party." and this incredible understatement "The number of registered voters on the books through Saturday - 5,472,854 - is an increase of more than 446,000 since Jan. 1, raising the prospect of unexpected outcomes in a number of closely contested races." (!!!!)

The skewing of polling results omitting cell phones and newly registered voters is well-documented, so the WTVD story is no surprise.

I've seen you use that "getting your talking points from ..." line numerous times in an attempt to trash people ala Joe McCarthy, so I decided this time to follow the link and see what your retro-red-baiting tar brush was comprised of:

1. Bush is destroying worker's rights and outsourcing jobs instead of protecting the right to organize and creating new jobs rebuilding schools, bridges, roads and hospitals.
2. Bush is privatizing Medicare, Social Security and Education with phony reforms instead of enacting health care for all, protecting retirement funds and fill funding for public education through college.
3. Bush is bankrupting the Federal Government with giant tax cuts for the very rich and super-funds to the military instead of securing the budget for human needs by taxing the rich and spending on human needs.
4. Bush is rolling back civil rights gains.instead of enforcing and expanding affirmative action to end racism and all areas of life.
5. Bush is curtailing a women's rights and choice by undermining Roe v. Wade instead of upholding the right to choice and ending the gender wage gap.
6. Bush is abusing immigrant workers in low-page jobs instead of providing a clear path to citizenship and equal rights.
7. Bush is exploiting and ruining the environment by protecting corporate polluters instead of conserving our natural resources for the public good.
8. Bush's war in Iraq is a disaster for our security and economy. He is pushing for more preemptive wars and for first strike nuclear military policy instead of negotiation and cooperation utilizing the UN.
9. Bush is denying civil liberties and free speech in the name of fighting terrorism instead of repealing the USA Patriot Act and help cities, towns and states fund firefighters and police.
10. Bush discriminates against gays and lesbians with a Constitutional Amendment instead of expanding civil rights and liberties for all.

Yep, pretty frightening stuff. UN (and its black helicopters), lesbians (like Cheney's daughter??) and tree-hugging!

I selected a few of these outrageous "talking points" on the Bush administration that this evil organization is foisting upon you Mr. Blogggg and tried to undermine their terrible invective!

1. Bush is destroying worker's rights and outsourcing jobs.

Maybe they're referring to the RNC's outsourcing their IT stuff to India.

"Indian elephants: My editor threatened to lock me in a networking closet with Al Franken and Bill O'Reilly if this column gets even remotely political, but this item is too good to pass up. It seems the Republican National Committee is such a staunch believer in outsourcing that it used a firm in Maharashtra, India, to create its database of approximately 165 million registered voters. Technically, the RNC hired a Seattle-area consultant, which then apparently outsourced the job to Compulink Systems in India. I tried to reach the GOP-ers for comment but had no luck — I guess they had other things on their plates."

3. Bush is bankrupting the Federal Government .

I'd say Bush is bankrupting the country, both morally and financially, but that's just me. What the debt clock says
is we've accumulated, at a rate of $1.7 billion per day, another $400++ billion in debt since Sept. 30, 2003, pushing the total debt to $7.4 trillion.

Or, as the Oakland Tribune points out

"For the fiscal year that began four months before Bush took office, the federal budget scored a $127.4 billion surplus, and the government was on track to take in a record $4.6 trillion more than it was projected to spend over the coming decade.

Since then, the country's fiscal fortunes have reversed, with record back-to-back deficits of $374 billion last year and $415 billion for the fiscal year that just ended. Government red ink is projected to total between $2.3 trillion and $5 trillion over the next ten years.

The national debt, meanwhile, has climbed from $5.7 trillion the day Bush took office to $7.4 trillion - a $1.7 trillion increase. Servicing that debt cost taxpayers $168 billion this year in interest payments to financiers in this country and abroad. For the record, the federal debt stood at $1.03 trillion when Ronald Reagan took office in 1981."

Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! So much for Bush's Orwellian claims of fiscal responsibility!

Talk about flip-flops, Bush claimed he'd veto any pork, but he hasn't to date, even skipping the
recent $137 billion corporate give away that makes it even more lucrative to outsource high-tech jobs (like mine - to be selfish about it).

These evil communist bastards should be ashamed of their baseless, ridiculous claims. They need to chill out like Bush and act like "Christian(s) with four aces." and accept that "the blessing of heaven" is upon him and our secular-lite administration.


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