Pete's Prep: Monday, May 21, 2018

Will Apple be a casualty of Democrats' economic warfare?

Tech behemoth Apple is looking at North Carolina's Research Triangle Park as the home for a massive expansion.

But there's a slight problem... Democrats whipped a national economic targeting North Carolina over HB2 in 2016, and they were successful at branding the state as anti-LGBTQ.

And once you release the weapons of economic warfare, it's very difficult to restrain them.

Apple is running into a backlash from gay-rights advocates just like Amazon has over the companies' consideration of North Carolina for major expansions.

Opposition stems from the legacy of the HB2 "bathroom" law that became a national flashpoint for anti-discrimination efforts. It was later partially repealed.

The news site Axios reported Friday that LGBT activists are "reacting with anger and dismay" over news that Apple is looking at locating at a site in Research Triangle Park. State legislative leaders on Thursday said they would enhance financial incentives to attract major companies, which would include Apple.

The Axios story quoted one unnamed activist saying "North Carolina is one of the most hostile states in the country to LGBTQ people." By Friday afternoon, a headline in the tech and entertainment site Mashable read: "Apple may build campus in North Carolina — despite the state's awful anti-LGBTQ laws."

There is also opposition coming from LGBTQ activists against Amazon's inclusion of NC on its short list of potential sites for a second headquarters.

Why don't Democrats want to impeach Trump?

According to our Democratic friends, President Donald Trump is the single-biggest threat to democracy and global peace. He's an unhinged, insane lunatic who needs to be stopped at all costs.

Which is why they don't really want to impeach him.

Or something.

A California billionaire is bringing his campaign to impeach the president to Charlotte next week, though some of the Democrats he hopes to persuade call it a distraction.

Tom Steyer will tout his Need to Impeach campaign Tuesday night at the Fillmore. It's part of a nationwide tour for the former hedge fund manager and liberal activist, who has spent over $40 million on his effort to push the impeachment of President Donald Trump. He calls Trump "a clear and present danger to our nation."

But Democratic congressional candidates aren't jumping on Steyer's bandwagon.

Democrat consultants are telling their clients to be careful on the topic. But do you have any doubt that if Democrats win the House in November they'll proceed with impeachment? 

Will "demographics are destiny" destroy the GOP?

I thought this was a good write-up by the John Locke Foundation's John Hood about whether Republicans are "fated to fade" as America becomes less white.

I don’t think Democratic ascendancy is preordained. I don’t think race and ethnicity are fixed characteristics in the long run, or that “Hispanics” and “Asians” are sufficient categories for describing and predicting political behavior. Filipinos, Japanese, Malays, and Bangladeshis might get lumped into the same Census category, but their histories, preferences, and electoral behavior are dissimilar. The same is true for Mexicans, Cubans, Colombians, and Chileans.

Most of all, I think sweeping claims about group preferences can produce analytical messes. In the 2016 election cycle, for example, white Americans were more likely to vote Republican for Congress than non-whites were. But 38 percent of whites voted Democratic. That’s not too far from the shares of Asians (34 percent), Hispanics (32 percent), and “other” ethnicities (41 percent) who voted Republican in House races.

He concludes - persuasion matters. And I agree. I've never believed that a limited government philosophy is appealing based on skin pigmentation.

NC becomes first to get broadband in every classroom

For the past two weeks, Republican state leaders have been accused of hating teachers, the children, and wanting to destroy the entire public education system.

Which is why they've worked to connect every classroom to the internet.

North Carolina is the first state to connect all K-12 classrooms to high-speed broadband. Lt. Gov. Dan Forest and FCC Chairman Ajit Pai will host a celebration of this achievement  Tuesday, May 22, at Graham High School.

Analogies are very hard for N&O Editor

Some NC lawmakers want teachers to be able to conceal-carry at work.

Some NC lawmakers want to be able to conceal-carry at work, themselves.

Some NC lawmakers want to install metal detectors at every school.

NC installed metal detectors at the General Assembly.

For Ned Barnett - the Editorial Page Editor at the Raleigh News & Observer - this is hypocritical. He called it a "contradiction of gun laws and school safety." Which, of course, it is not.

In actuality, it is a perfectly consistent.

Some lawmakers think the threat of school gun violence is now so great that teachers should be armed in their classrooms. But those same lawmakers don’t want teachers armed in the Legislative Building where they’ve voted to ease gun laws.

There’s no fixing that twisted thinking given the pro-gun stance of the current legislature. The majority will accept that a society in which teachers need to bear arms is necessary to protect the right of virtually all American adults to bear arms. For them, the best way to stop mentally disturbed students from shooting up their schools isn’t to restrict access to guns; the best way is to have armed teachers and more armed officers on campus.

Barnett goes on to make all the usual dishonest arguments about guns that leftists make in the wake of a shooting. (Well, not ALL shootings - just the ones that help advance their agenda.)

He says, "The best way to reduce gun violence in schools and elsewhere is to reduce the number of guns through gun buybacks and tighter gun controls, including greater penalties for gun owners who do not secure their weapons from being taken by children."

Yet, buyback programs don't work. They are one of the least effective mechanisms to improve safety, actually.

I expect the Editorial Page Editor of the state's leading political newspaper to know basic facts of the gun control issue before telling us what to think about it.

Unless the intent is to mislead.

Pete Kaliner

Pete Kaliner

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