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One of the most interesting columns over the weekend was the piece in Charlotte Observer by a doctor, who along with his wife—also a physician, took the course that is required to receive a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

Both are gun owners and recreational shooters and their take on the class is fascinating, especially the advice from the instructor on how and where to store their weapons.

Perhaps most shocking, though, was the advice we received from a practicing law enforcement officer regarding the storage of firearms: under the bed, preferably loaded. I’m not kidding. Fifty or so families, many of whom we must presume have children in the home, walked out of that classroom with the understanding that the proper way to store your guns was in a location that is within reach of a child, and loaded. No gun safe. No trigger lock. Across the United States in 2008-09, according to the FBI, we lost more preschoolers to guns (173) than officers in the line of duty (89).

Yikes.

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Here is today’s guess who said it quiz.

I’m concerned about the fact there seems to be a war on the poor. That, if you’re poor, somehow you’re shiftless and lazy.”

Guess who said that.  Senator Elizabeth Warren? State Senator Martin Nesbitt? Rev. William Barber? Nope, none of them.

It was Ohio Governor John Kasich, a Republican who was a conservative stalwart when he was a member of Congress, as Paul Krugman recounts in today’s column.

 

 

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vegan lunch for linksHere are your Wednesday lunch links, a little health care polling, a little health care history, a note for you foodies out there, and as always a musical selection for your viewing and listening pleasure–this time one that sort of fits into the lunch theme.

First, some polling that is probably not making the rabid opponents of the Affordable Care Act too happy. Steven Benen has the details about how four major polls all show that public support for Obamacare is growing.

Crooks and Liars has a fascinating history of what happened when the Bush Administration rolled out the Medicare Part D program in 2006 over the objections of Democrats in Congress. The program began with massive computer glitches—sound familiar?—but its former opponents helped make it work because it was the law of the land that could actually help people. Read More

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Now that it looks like saner heads are finally prevailing over the radical reactionaries in Washington, North Carolina Senator Richard Burr is taking another shot at fellow Republican Ted Cruz in the New York Times.

Senator Richard Burr, Republican of North Carolina, took a swipe at Senators Ted Cruz, Republican of Texas, and Mike Lee, Republican of Utah, as well as House members who linked further funding of the government to gutting the health care law, which is financed by its own designated revenues and spending cuts.

“Let’s just say sometimes learning what can’t be accomplished is an important long-term thing,” Mr. Burr said, “and hopefully for some of the members they’ve learned it’s impossible to defund mandatory programs by shutting down the federal government.”

Burr came under fire from the fringe of his party for his comments in July that trying to shutdown the government to defund the Affordable Care Act was the dumbest idea he’d ever heard of.

Maybe not THE dumbest, but pretty close. Now the question is will Burr stand up to other dumb ideas of the fringe elements of the GOP and finally be part of getting something done in Washington or will he retreat meekly back into the radical obstructionist fold?

 

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vegan_lunch_620x413-150x150Here is your slightly tardy Wednesday edition of Lunch Links and no, they don’t all have to do with Tuesday’s unusual hearing at the Legislative Building that featured state lawmakers of both parties asking tough questions of embattled DHHS Secretary Aldona Wos, but here are few stories not to miss in addition to Sarah Ovaska’s roundup this morning.

WRAL, the News & Observer, and the Associated Press also had fairly comprehensive coverage of the day’s events, and WFAE in Charlotte and WUNC-FM in Chapel Hill covered things for the radio world.  WRAL had an interesting story about public records and DHHS in light of a terrific investigative piece published Tuesday by Rose Hoban with N.C. Health News about the department’s repsonse to a Medicaid audit. 

There’s plenty of commentary about the day too, from Gary Pearce over at Talking About Politics and Adam Searing earlier this morning right here on the Pulse.

The N.C. League of Conservation Voters released its 2013 Legislative Scorecard today with a record number of state lawmakers earning a zero. Sure does make you proud, doesn’t it?

Also in non-Wos news, the absurd hostage crisis in Washington continues, or as New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman calls it this morning, the U.S. Fringe Festival.

If you didn’t see Frontline’s  disturbing documentary last night about brain injuries and the NFL, it is definitely worth your time. 

And finally, John Lennon would have been 73 today.  Imagine what he would singing if he were still around. Imagine indeed.

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