North Carolina released from liberal grip

The Wilmington StarNews (Aug. 4, 2013) printed a long essay by political reporter Corey Dade published from “The Root” an online magazine ( of black “culture.” Mr. Dade believes that North Carolina, previously “well down the path of progressivism,” has had the GOP legislature “shut it down”—during this past year’s legislative session.

For most of us native and transplant Tar Heels that’s very good news. It’s also astonishing. After decades of liberal Democrat control, a moderately conservative government has slammed the door on the destructive “progressive” agenda. In disbelief and dismay, statists have rallied local, state and national progressive forces in a huge media blitz, desperate to stop the turnaround.

Furious because the largely conservative General Assembly and Republican governor have not caved in to their unrelenting criticism, slanderous rhetoric and unruly rallies, Dade’s article reflects the national liberal outrage targeting this previously “blue” state. His piece is titled, “How N. Carolina became red again.”

Dade laments that Democrat progressives previously had expanded “access to the polls” (code for stacking the deck with Democrat voters). He wrote that newcomers to the state “brought more open-minded political views” (code for the influx of Northern liberals). Assuming they are mostly liberal, Dade also notes a 118 percent increase in gay couples shown in the 2010 census. Non-traditional personal relationships helped “nudge the political needle to the left,” he writes.

These people, Dade believes, had shifted the voting patterns of the entire state from previously more conservative to liberal (I believe that they concentrate near a few urban areas, universities and in coastal enclaves).

So, what caused the “GOP backlash”? Dade cites his reasons:

1) Changing demographics (“minorities rose…Hispanic population soared…unmarried couples increased”). 2) Early voting (“helped increase minority turnout, often in favor of Democratic candidates”). 3) Obama (blacks “voted at a higher rate than whites”). 4) The Tea Party (“anti-government conservative reaction to 2008”) and 5) Blacks outvoting whites (“strong minority turnout, particularly through expanded measures for voting, gave Republicans cause for concern”).

Dade’s article is confusing and his argument could be refuted on several points. Some of his statistics are probably valid, but his analysis lacks perspective. For example, North Carolinians have a long history of being independent, strongly Christian and intolerant of oppressive government.

In my opinion, Dade’s implications that a conflict with “minorities” moved North Carolina toward a more moderate government show a typically distorted racial perspective. He wrongly thinks that our legislators passed a “draconian voter ID requirement” and eliminated or reduced “measures such as early voting” that will restrict his voting block from the polls.

Of course Republicans have released the powerful, corrupt statist political strangle-hold on personal liberty and property in North Carolina, but they have helped all our citizens with a more responsive and more responsible government.

Americans for Prosperity ( recently summarized some of these amazing accomplishments:

Last month the North Carolina General Assembly adjourned, after only seven months in session. During that short time our legislators have reformed a 1930s tax code, cut income taxes (we came from ranking low among the states in favorable taxation to 17th “best business tax climate”). They crafted a balanced state budget that phases out debt, added a rainy-day fund, strengthened education and reduced excessive regulations.

Conservative legislators made major education reforms; they passed a comprehensive energy bill; they eliminated taxpayer-funded politics; they will repay our $2.5 billion unemployment insurance debt to the federal government; they defunded a wasteful, corrupt rural development center; and they blocked establishment of a “draconian” Obamacare state-run exchange and controlled out-of-control Medicaid spending.

Progressives are fuming that in less than one year North Carolina conservatives have started to unravel after more than 30 years of statist schemes and corrupt government that have gripped this state. I say, it’s about time.


About R. E. Smith Jr.

Mr. Smith writes essays and commentary on politics, American history, environment, higher education and culture. He's been published in print media and at blog sites for about 25 years. Smith's formal education includes B.S. and M.S. degrees from the State University of New York and Syracuse University. He has earned a 21-credit hour Certificate in Professional Writing from the University of North Carolina-Wilmington. Training/work experience: NYS Ranger School; U. S. Army, Corp of Engineers; soil scientist and forester with USDA; Assoc. Professor at SUNY; real estate agent; small business owner.
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