The ultimate and potentially damaging weapon environmental groups wield against their chosen business enemies is litigation. Local opponents of the Carolina Cement Company “will likely challenge the project in court,” according to a Wilmington Star-News article. The threat lurks in a cabal of environmental organizations linked together in a massive web where teams of trial lawyers spin lawsuits.
In this case, the North Carolina Coastal Federation (www.nccoast.org) is listed as a “partner” group and links to the Southern Environmental Law Center website (www.southernenvironment.org). The SELC and the Duke Environmental Law and Policy Clinic (www.law.duke.edu/envlawpolicy) tried to influence the state permitting process of Carolina Cement. They “urged regulators to delay issuing an air-quality permit” based on a “mercury threat.” SELC has assigned one of a dozen staff attorneys located in Chapel Hill, N. C. to this case.
The huge environmental web is difficult to weave through. One connecting strand to Stop Titan is a group called Waterkeeper Alliance. According to www.ActivistCash.com, groups such as this one often have innocent-sounding names but are “financial Goliaths.” These “nonprofits” get millions of dollars from left-wing foundations, large corporations, and wealthy individual donors. Worse, they are funded by government agencies. The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency gives grants to the Alliance—to help support more than 20 lawyers who continually scheme to sue American companies and industries.
The Waterkeeper Alliance is run by Robert F. Kennedy Jr. from New York. It functions together with the “Riverkeeper” program and the Pace University Environmental Law Clinic. This eco-conglomerate has a team of lawyers recruited from 15 national law firms. They each chip in money to sweeten-the-pot that may eventually be worth billions to them.
The Alliance has licensed “coastkeepers” to meddle in legitimate business activities along the coast. The self-serving “keepers” survey “environmental health” of assigned areas, “alert the public to potential hazards” and “expose those who contribute in any way” to so-called “degradation.” These nonprofit groups do not serve the public interest. We have more than enough state and federal laws, restrictions, rules, and monitoring by official agencies to protect us from environmental hazards.
Joel Bourne, a Stop Titan organizer, says he wants to get the regulators’ attention in court. He’ll have plenty of help from the environmental legal web. But having access to money and lawyers does not decide right from wrong—Stop Titan seems to be deeply tangled in that sticky web.Read full article » No Comments »
The indictment came down today in the arson case involving Allen Strickland’s Tabor City home. The investigation concluded that Strickland set the fire himself. From the News & Observer breaking story:
Strickland, 17, was charged Thursday with one count of fraudulent burning of a building and one count of attempting to obtain property by false pretenses, both felonies.
The charges stem from a July 29 fire at Strickland’s home, located at 99 March Avenue in Tabor City. Soles, 74, has said he helped pay for the construction of the house.
Please don’t say you were surprised. At this point in the sprawling R.C. Soles story, it is best to assume that if you can imagine a possible scenario or explanation of events, it may well turn out to be true.Read full article » No Comments »
That’s essentially what today’s StarNews editorial concludes — that there is so much public confusion and skepticism about the R.C. Soles case that the district attorney, Rex Gore, should lean heavily on the side of releasing as much information as possible, as soon as possible:
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Columbus County’s sheriff quickly turned both the accusation and the shooting over to the SBI, which almost never says anything about its findings. Typically, the SBI turns its report over to the district attorney, in this case, Rex Gore, who will decide whether to file charges against anyone.
Gore broke with DA tradition not long ago when he opened his office’s investigative files on former Sheriff Ron Hewett (now serving a federal prison sentence). That gesture allowed the public to see what evidence the district attorney had collected on Hewett and put to rest talk that he’d try to cover for a political crony.
Gore’s political history with Soles dates back a long way. During the Colcor corruption case back in the 1980s, Soles was accused but not convicted of buying votes for candidate Gore in his bid to unseat then-District Attorney Mike Easley. To help dispel talk of a cover-up, Gore should make the SBI report on the Soles incidents public: details of the shooting and events leading to it, of the senator’s tangled relationship with a bunch of young “clients,” and whatever can be determined as the truth in one ex-client’s accusation/recant.
In this type of situation, as in politics, it isn’t what you say that counts. It’s what the people see with their own eyes. And from what few details have already emerged, it would appear that there’s plenty more to see.