Perdue’s only hope

One of the main reasons that progressives have always felt a little leery of Beverly Perdue is their concern that she represents the politics of the past — the conservative, good ol’ boy wing of the Democratic Party that was/is more concerned about winning elections and holding onto power than advancing the causes of social, economic and political justice.

While she has done many good things as Governor, those fears have already been confirmed on more than one occasion during Perdue’s first 34 months in office. And they got another unwelcome boost today with the indictment of three people associated with her 2008 campaign. Read more


What Would Wangari Maathai Do?

Cancer took Wangari Maathai last weekend, but not her legacy. As the first black woman to receive a Nobel Prize, the strong-willed Kenyan forever changed the face of her country and much of Africa. Her simple yet radical tree-planting Greenbelt Movement popularized the need for land and water conservation and women’s equality on the continent. By her death, an estimated 45 million trees were planted across Africa.

Wangari Maathai

Also last weekend, the News and Observer reported that Governor Perdue is now leaning to support offshore oil and gas drilling. When she ran for Governor in 2008 Perdue opposed offshore drilling; after the election she said she would agree to study it and now she is leaning to support it. With the study nearly complete, it’s time to craft an offshore energy policy for our state.

Faced with crafting that policy, what would Wangari Maathai do?

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Lighten up, Francis (and Pat)

Governor Bev Perdue has never been the world’s greatest at ad lib speechifying. Eight dreary years in the dreadful and anonymous job of Lt. Governor probably didn’t help, but whatever the reason, all can safely agree that the Guv just can’t help herself sometimes when it comes to giving voice to a wacky thought or two.

In some ways, it’s almost endearing. For better or worse, one rarely has the sense of listening to a pre-programmed, automaton politician when Perdue speaks. Some of the things she says may be silly or cringe-inducing, but you have to admit Perdue is herself. She doesn’t pretend to be something she isn’t.  No one ever has to call up her key staffers and beg that they “let Perdue be Perdue.”

All of which brings us to this  ridiculous flap that has developed in the last 24 hours with respect to a very Perdue-ish remark the Guv made yesterday. Read more