September 2008

Orange County Democratic Party Legislative Breakfast

Via e-mail:

The political season is hot, and the Orange County Democratic Party's Legislative Breakfast - 8 AM, October 11, at the Friday Center in Chapel Hill - will be a highlight. Our State legislators will report on the recent legislative session in Raleigh, and Congressman Price will report on what is happening on Capitol Hill. Our big social event of the year, the Breakfast also helps raise money for Party operations during this exciting fall campaign.

Tickets purchased by October 6 are $40. Tickets purchased at the door are $60. Teen Dems and UNC Young Dems tickets are $20 if purchased by October 6. Contact your precinct chair or the OCDP office (919-933-9662, to purchase tickets. Or mail your check to OCDP, PO Box 3368, Chapel Hill, NC 27515-3368. Write"Legislative Breakfast" in the notation.

Anyone who wishes to donate tickets as gifts to party volunteers or to Teen or Young Dems may do so. Large 2008 donations to the OCDP and ticket donations will be noted in the program.

Get your tickets early for this fun and informative event. We hope to see you there.

Jack Sanders, Chair
Orange County Democratic Party

To read this e-mail in your web browser, go to



Saturday, October 11, 2008 - 4:00am


Friday Center

SURGE Youth Leadership Awards Ceremony

Via Facebook:

Only $15 for students! ($25 general public)

Thursday, September 18th, 6pm
Carrboro Century Center
100 N. Greensboro St., Carrboro, NC

Come help us celebrate the achievements of young leaders from around North Carolina who have made significant contributions to the struggle for justice in our communities.

This year's finalists are :

• Chris Parker, Chapel Hill High School, is a leader of Chapel Hill High School SURGE and worked to develop the Celebration of Earth and Sky and campus biodiesel processor.

• Rosemary Johnson, Southern Guilford High School, founded a student group to encourage dialogue about gender, body image, and media representations of women.

• Student Action with Workers (SAW), at UNC-Chapel Hill, led a three-week long sit-in to demand that the UNC administration adopt a policy to ensure that university-licensed products are made in factories that respect workers rights.

• Feminist Students United (FSU), UNC-Chapel Hill, led a series of campus discussions about gender, heterosexism, and privilege.

• Andrew Zonderman, Duke University, led Duke Students against Sweatshops' efforts to convince Duke University to join the boycott of Smithfield Foods products.

• Rosie Rangel, Student Action with Farmworkers (SAF), led a coalition of rural Latino youth from migrant families in North Carolina.

• iNSIDE oUT 180 creates safe environments for LGBTQ youth by providing opportunities for them to express themselves and by educating the broader community about LGBTQ issues.

More information and tickets online at

Don't forget to join the SURGE Facebook Group!


Thursday, September 18, 2008 - 2:00pm


Century Center, Carrboro

TryTransit Week

I always seem to forget about this until the last minute. Monday is Car Free Day, and I hope you will try some transit all week long. I've been guilty of flying all over this week, but next week I will be happily working from home every day.  Maybe I'll take the bus downtown for lunch.

Try Transit Week is sponsored by Durham Area Transit Authority (DATA), Cary Transit (C-Tran), Capital Area Transit (CAT), Chapel Hill Transit, UNC Chapel Hill, NCSU Wolfline and Triangle Transit. The goal of the campaign is to encourage Triange commuters to try the bus! Taking transit instead of driving alone helps save our environment, save money on expensive gas and save our sanity by reducing stressful traffic.


Specific local events from Chapel Hill Transit:

  • Monday, 9/22: National Car Free Day
    Leave your car at home and ride the bus

  • Wednesday, 9/24: Stuff the Bus
    NC-54 East Park and Ride (located off Friday Center Drive and NC 54)
    6:00-10:00 a.m.
    Chick-fil-A at University Mall (location TBD)
    Donate 3 canned goods and receive a FREE Chick-fil-A chicken sandwich.
    More details coming soon!

  • Friday, September 26: Employee Appreciation Day
    Say thank you to your favorite driver



Monday, September 22, 2008 - 4:00am to Friday, September 26, 2008 - 1:00pm

What are potential local ramifications of current financial crisis to county and the towns

The question is simple to state but probably very complex to answer.

What are the possible ramifications to the County and the Towns from the current financial crisis including but not at all exclusively budgets, taxes, development plans, services, credit, bonds, etc....? 

A secondary question is are there any actions our local governments should be taking now to reduce negative risks?

Certainly the personal suffering of residents is likely, including potential loss of jobs, shrinking investments, sinking home values (maybe). If this gets worse the consequences will be felt by local governments.

Maybe there are skills on this blog that can provide some insights.

National Financial Meltdown is a Local Issue. ACT NOW!

The country has been getting ransacked over the last couple of weeks.  On August 4th 2008  both houses of congress (Rep. David Price included) sanctioned  H.R. 3221 and the conservatorship of Fannie and Freddie  essentially saddeling the U.S. government with 5.4 trillion in debt that it is now responsible for!!! 

Had we had a debate and expressed the outrage over this back then, gone into the streets banging our pots and pans .... the latest outrage, the  proposed bail-out bill, would now be something that our Congressman David Price might think twice about before voting  ...  we should have broken down his door back in August!

The very wise, prophetic, yet ignored,  Catherine Austin Fitts has summed this bill up:

I wasn't that impressed with Ann Arbor

I was fortunate enough to be a scholarship participant on the Inter-City Visits to Madison and Ann Arbor. I thoroughly enjoyed both experiences, but I found that I am unable to stop comparing the Madison experience to the Ann Arbor experience.

This exercise, of course, is completely unfair. Mainly because, in my opinion, Madison wins. In everything. Hands down. Period. Ann Arbor doesn't stand a chance.

Madison has an abundance of natural beauty. It had a really great downtown that seemed accessable to both students and other people. It has the Overture Center, which always takes my breath away, and Madision is a hotbed for creativity and technology. It is so much what I want for Chapel Hill.

But Ann Arbor is different (duh). I didn't see anything particularly beautiful or extrodinary about it. Ann Arbor seems much more into function, rather than form. It ain't Madison, but it has its good parts.

Ann Arbor has fantastic elected leadership. Their mayor is dynamic and charismatic, and he seems to be the agent for getting a lot of really great stuff done in Ann Arbor. He has spearheaded Ann Arbor's environmental movement.

He has

ReCYCLEry 8th Anniversary Celebration

The ReCYCLEry,, is celebrating its first 8th anniversary by hosting a fun-filled family-oriented gathering on October 26th that will include food, music, cruiser-style bike rides and more.  Located at the Southern Rail Restaurant near Weaver Street Market, the event will run from 2-6 pm and will welcome hundreds of community members who have volunteered their time and skills, their support, or have benefited from the work of The ReCYCLEry over the past eight years.  All are welcome to join!  Suggested donation per person: $8.

Who:  Community members, bike mechanics, bike-enthusiasts, children and their parents, elected officials, transportation gurus, public health leaders, teachers, and people who will pay the suggested donation just to join us for some free Southern Rail tater tots!

When:  SAVE THE D8! Sunday, October 26th 2-6 pm (The ReCYCLEry will not be open to the public on this day)

Where:  Southern Rail,,   201-C East Main Street, Carrboro, North Carolina,  27510

What:  Guided bike tours around Chapel Hill and Carrboro for all experience levels, light food, beer, music, information about an upcoming bike collection drive though Performance, Volunteer Appreciation awards, and much more.

Why:  The ReCYCLEry is a non-profit organization that provides a creative workspace to connect salvaged bikes with active community members, creates opportunities for skill building and volunteerism, and seeks to increase the use of the bicycle for both transportation and recreation. The group settled it’s current location a couple of years ago, has an advisory board of 6 members, and a volunteer corps of over 400 individuals.  This year, we celbrate 8 years of existence and honor the past while generating support for the future.

A suggested donation of $8 (only $1 per year of existence!) will help fund continuing programs such as our fall Mobile Repair Days where we pack a mini-shop onto bike trailers and ride to underserved communities distributing bikes and teaching basic maintenance.  All donations are tax-deductible and donations of any amount will be greatly appreciated.


Sunday, October 26, 2008 - 10:00am to 2:00pm


Southern Rail

Bicycle commuter tax benefit - voting tomorrow

This is getting voted on in DC tomorrow, Sept. 23rd.  It is not really

a local issue, but I wish to post it since I work towards these goals

locally.  If it doesn't pass, perhaps local initiatives could be brought




*H.R. 6899: Comprehensive American Energy Security and Consumer Protection



Last night the House of Representatives passed H.R. 6899 the "Comprehensive

Chapel Hill News down to a skeleton crew

Fiona Morgan at the Independent reports that a number of newsroom staff have accepted the buyout offers that the McClatchy-owned News & Observer offered last month.

Among them is Samiha Khanna, who covers Durham County and its school system; Matt Dees, a former Durham city reporter who was recently transferred to the Orange County bureau; and Cheryl Johnston Sadgrove, who covers Orange County government. Until the newsroom is reorganized to adjust for these losses, that leaves one Orange County and four Durham reporters.

- Triangulator: N&O loses more reporters, 9/22/08

I still can't understand the business model that has them eliminating the one uniquely valuable thing that the paper has. No-one's going to buy the paper just to pick up wire reports and local classifieds. Or as McClatchy's CEO said:



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