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Lunch Links – 140,000 VHS tapes, teacher pay and a fake CIA agent

For Lunch Links today, I’ll highlight an oddball assortment of articles that have gotten my attention in recent days.

Here’s a fascinating story from Fast Company about a former librarian in Pennsylvania who, for 35 years, archived television news program as part of a one-woman mission to document the day’s events. Her cache of 140,000 video cassettes of major, and minor, news events are being digitized and eventually will be available to the public.

A little closer to home in North Carolina, state Sen. Bob Rucho, a Matthews Republican, is refusing to apologize for his tweet over the weekend comparing the Affordable Care Act to atrocities committed by Nazis and terrorists.

ruchotweet

Not a big surprise to anyone that follows teacher pay issues, but the Washington Post had this graphic today of average teacher salaries state-by-state and North Carolina hovers near the bottom — fourth worst in the nation. Only Oklahoma, South Dakota and Mississippi pay less.

teacherpaymap

Finally, here’s an incredibly bizarre story about one of the EPA’s top climate change scientist who lied to his bosses by falsely claiming he was an undercover CIA agent to avoid doing his job.

To think, I thought calling in with a fake head cold was nefarious enough.

John C. Beale, who was EPA’s highest-paid employee at $206,000 in annual salary and bonuses, plead guilty in September to federal charges of defrauding the government, and taxpayers, of close to  $1 million.

The EPA apparently never asked for back-up documents from Beale for excuses like this – “At one point he claimed to be urgently needed in Pakistan because the Taliban was torturing his CIA replacement.”

Or this:

He also claimed to be suffering from malaria that he got while serving in Vietnam. According to his lawyer’s filing, he didn’t have malaria and never served in Vietnam. He told the story to EPA officials so he could get special handicap parking at a garage near EPA headquarters.

He’ll find out what his punishment is today.

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