The StarNews and WWAY are reporting that County Commissioner Brian Berger had a suicide attempt last night.
(StarNews) – New Hanover County Commissioner Brian Berger was taken by EMS Monday night to New Regional Medical Center for an attempted suicide. The report indicates that he had a “minor” injury from a razor. According to Wilmington police, Berger was using drugs or alcohol at the time of the incident at 11:40 p.m. Monday and had a .40-caliber pistol and ammunition.
Berger denied Tuesday he wanted to kill himself. ”If I did, I’d be dead,” Berger said. “There would be no attempt with me. It would be success or no attempt.”
That’s just an odd quote to me.
Word is surfacing that Judge Ola Lewis has filed paperwork with the NC Supreme Court that contradicts an affidavit by a Brunswick County Sheriff’s deputy.
Short version (more information soon) is that Deputy Charlie Miller claimed Lewis summoned him from a vehicular death situation to deliver paperwork to district attorney Jon David from Judge Jerry Jolly. Lewis is also reported to have called the Brunswick Community College with Jolly doing research on traffic court.
Lewis claimed she had nothing to do with this situation in her paperwork. So we have two sworn folks contradicting one another which means we have a perjury situation on our hands. Lewis also attempted to have Miller investigated by the sheriff’s office which was ignored for lack of merit.
Of note, Lewis recently claimed the state budget forced her to fire one of her staff. She was able to get approval from Brunswick County Commissioners to fund that same position with local dollars. She did not hire back the staff person she fired, but instead hired Moses Stanley who had been fired from the Sheriff’s office. Here’s the fun part, apparently Stanley was the notary who witnessed Ola’s statement to the NC Supreme Court.
It will be interesting to see if the Supremes try to discern who lied on their affidavit.Read full article » No Comments »
Allen “Frog” Strickland hopped out on his $1m bail by violating his judicial marching orders by going over to the home of former Senator RC Soles and then went to a local convenience store to cut off his ankle GPS device. After eluding authorities for five days (and making them look rather inept) he turned himself in and now has a $25 million bond. Heck murderers don’t get that kind of bond. It’s yet another example of how ludicrous things have become in the orbit of the former democrat senator from Tabor City.
But let’s refresh some folks memories. Sen. Soles claims he wants to “help” these young men, but a quick glance reveals a different reality.
Allen Strickland, now 19 and unemployed, has been arrested numerous times with a lengthy record and faces serious charges after just having gone through an arson trial involving his personal residence (which was a gift by Soles.) Strickland had no criminal record before meeting the senator at the age of 14. Strickland has publicly said that Soles was a molester.
Kyle Blackburn was also in Soles orbit and close to the senator. He was shot while on the Senator’s property trespassing by Soles. Definitely not a positive step in life for his involvement with Soles who was seen recently buying appliances for Blackburn.
Stacey Scott alleged that Soles molested him, recanted and claimed that he was paid by Soles to recant his story. Scott has been under house arrest and faces additional charges. Habitual drug user, Scott has said he might chose suicide at some point in time. Soles has been such a positive influence here.
BJ Wright was recently released from a stint in jail and was under ankle monitoring before posting a high bail. Again, he has no visible means of income and has asserted that Soles molested him as a youth. Wright still faces serious charges and jail time. Another life in shambles close to RC Soles.
And then there’s Tobey Faircloth who claims, with great detail, that Soles molested him at 13 years of age over 60 times in the 70s.
In the past two years alone, Tabor City police have fielded over 40 calls related to Soles and Strickland. That excludes dozens of other calls over the years between Soles and other young men. For the record Soles claims he has never helped any of these men post bond in spite of saying he has given them all hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and gifts.Read full article » No Comments »
Irene is coming. She’s less than 200 miles away now at 2:30 Friday afternoon. I’m sitting on my front porch patiently waiting her arrival (with a shot of bourbon, a Hershey’s chocolate bar and my favorite La Finca cigar to help keep me calm). TV and radio meteorologists, reporters and government officials have warned us for days of the potentially destructive force of this large hurricane along the east coast from Wilmington, N. C. (where I sit) to Bangor, Maine. Millions of coastal residents and their property worth billions lay in the projected path of Miss Irene.
National Hurricane Center, Miami, Fl.
Hurricane warning: Little River Inlet North Carolina northward
2:00 p.m. Friday August 26, 2011 (Tracking Map: Irene to Wilmington 211 miles)
Hurricane Category 2
Wind speed: 100 mph
Pressure: 951 mb
Movement: N at 14 mph
Meteorologists track her every move with aircraft, satellites and 8 or so models (weather people love to play with models showing the predicted storm tracks way beyond the actual hurricane location). Reporters show us surf, beaches and people in the path of the storm—relentlessly. Federal, state, and local officials stand in front of cameras to tell us where to go—some of us like to tell them where to go.
The rain started from outer-bands when we awoke at about 7 this morning—sprinkles at first, then showers, than downpours in bursts. The winds became noticeably stronger by midday. I watch leaves and branches of a sycamore and a willow oak across the street wave and flutter in a frenzy at each gust. The southern pines stand tall and strong, seeming to respond: “Hey, we’ve been through this before; no big deal.”
We, too, have weathered several hurricanes in the past 17 years since moving to the “Cape Fear” coast in 1994. Four decades earlier I experienced my first hurricane in North Carolina. I was stationed at Ft. Bragg in the Army when Hazel sprang upon us in 1954. She came inland at the South Carolina border and cleared a swath through the piney woods west of Wilmington. I recall that we troops were alerted during the storm to assist. We readied ourselves, but weren’t called out.
In July 1996, Hurricane Bertha’s “eye” passed near Wrightsville Beach about 10 miles northeast of our home, located a couple of miles north of Carolina Beach and almost within sight of the Cape Fear River to our west. Less than two months later, September 5th, Hurricane Fran sailed up the Cape Fear River. In August 1998, Hurricane Bonnie blew along our coast following a track similar to Bertha’s. The next year, September 1999, Hurricane Floyd (a “500-year” flooding storm) made landfall here (my wife Barbara never lets me forget that when she first expressed concerns about hurricanes, I told her not to worry; statistically—I had read—hurricanes only occur here about every 25 years. Now she has little faith in that predictive advice: “Oh sure, you told me that….”).
Surprisingly, we’ve had virtually no damage to our house, except for a few shingles missing at the edge of the garage. Trees in the woods behind the house have blown down and we’ve had some high water-table ponding in back and localized river flooding associated with high tides nearby, but no other serious problems. Of course, we’ve been inconvenienced with flooded roads, blocked bridges, power outages and closed stores, but we all “cope” and we do what we have to do.
Now at 3:30 p.m. the wind seems stronger and steadier. During her sojourn through the Caribbean and swinging north along the Florida, Georgia and South Carolina coasts, Irene had accelerated to a Category 3 (H3) hurricane; pushing water and everything in its path at 115 mph. It’s now dropped down a bit to H2 with sustained winds of 100 miles per hour. If she stays east of us in the Atlantic Ocean her winds here on shore may reach 75 to 80 mph, with higher gusts—still enough to unnerve those in that zone.
I’ve arranged a “Goodnight Irene” cocktail party with a few of our close friends at about 5-ish. We take the threat of this storm seriously, but we’ve experienced so many official scares and trepidations of danger that rarely materialize that I figure we need to lighten up some. Anyway, none of the storms with female names have caused us any harm—how bad can one called “Irene” be?Read full article » No Comments »
Look closely at the sign on the Sunday (Aug. 21) StarNews front page behind two smiling UNC-Wilmington employees preparing to squander $30 million. The money will be laundered through the federal National Institute of Standards and Technology and the state of North Carolina. It’s part of the massive federal scheme to “stimulate” elusive jobs. (Check out Recovery.gov to discover the hundreds of billions of dollars misspent on public projects throughout the U. S.)
They call a planned UNCW edifice, hidden in an obscure Wilmington residential area, the Marine Biotechnology Center. Innovations will “hopefully” spring from the building to lavish economic wealth on our region—problem is: the program rests on a risky “almost nonexistent industry,” according to the StarNews article by Jason Gonzales (StarNewsOnline.com).
Here’s the general idea: there’s potential wealth out in the ocean that someday might be marketable— if innovators get interested. The new spacious building will house some professors and a “few big companies,” that will create an “incubator” for a dozen or so start-up companies. After they’ve hatched these entrepreneurs will then “move out from our facility and boost the economy of Southeastern North Carolina,” according to a UNCW hopeful.
So, academics at UNCW, unwisely spending millions of our dollars, set up lodging and labs; then expect venture capitalists to come to them. However, no leases have been signed. The “resources” housed at the site will be enough to “ensure companies flock to the university’s venture,” according to the director of the UNCW Center for Marine Science. University visionaries don’t live in the real world.
But who authorizes these unsound government projects? The usual suspects, of course. Deep into Gonzales’ story we read: “The opportunity to have a venture like this was made legal under the Millennial Campus Financing Act of 1999 by the General Assembly.” UNCW employees admit “that’s when the university’s wheels started turning on how the campus could take advantage.”
There you have it—bureaucrats look for ways to further their self-serving purposes; and our political Heroes often give them access to public funding with feel-good, but ill-founded legislation.Read full article » No Comments »
Where are the signs, the rallies, and the demands for answers? General Electric’s and Hitachi’s international subsidiary, Global Laser Enrichment, plans a “major industrial facility” in Wilmington to produce enriched uranium reactor fuel “by the ton,” according to a New York Times News Service report in Sunday’s StarNews. GE scientists have been working on this “new route to the bomb” technology here for the past two years. How can politicians and environmental activists allow this to happen right here in River City?
Will the N. C. Coastal Federation demand that the company reveal potential harmful emissions from this top secret project? When can we expect “Riverkeeper” Mike Giles to warn of shellfish contamination and fish that glow with radiation in the murky Cape Fear River? How long before pediatricians and mothers claim that children will die from radiation poisoning? When will the Southern Environmental Law Center sue to prevent the Nuclear Regulatory Commission from issuing a permit to GE?
It’s reported that GE officials will ravage 100 acres of land to build the huge facility here in pristine New Hanover County. The main building alone will occupy 14 acres. Will GE destroy “wetlands”? What will be emitted from stacks? Will radioactive isotopes get in the water? Will our “quality of life” be threatened?
We’ve been told that only tourist attractions, office buildings, an arts “community” and conventions are appropriate for this area. Where is the outrage from city council, county commissioners and tourism officials about another natural resource production plant coming to Wilmington?
Recently, StarNews editors had some wishy-washy words: “…residents deserve to know that regulators have covered all the potential safety concerns”—a pointlessly obvious conclusion.
But where are the environmental saviors such as Stop Titan—to Stop GE?Read full article » No Comments »
This story really is a page turner deserving of a national spotlight. If he had been a Republican I can’t help but think more attention would have been paid, but that’s just speculation.
For quick review, we have the state’s longest serving politician who has shot a young man in his driveway, he’s had 43 calls to the personal cell phone of the Tabor City police involving Allen Strickland, he’s been accused of sexually molesting young boys for over thirty years, he’s been involved in the largest public corruption scandal in Columbus County history, he’s continually providing large amounts of cash to habitual drug users/criminals, and he has provided cars, homes and countless other gifts to these same young men.
And yet law enforcement continues to look impotent rather than relevant.
You can read the entire narrative of how a trespassing charge results in a $1m bond which is simply posted with a brand new BMW here at the StarNews. For his part RC denies he’s involved in providing bond money to ANY of these young men according to WWAY.Read full article » No Comments »
Historically, will it be written that our current political condition was “…a complex and vaguely unsatisfactory period…difficult to remember or even interpret”? Further, was it a period that “lacked definiteness either of purpose or of progress”; when “there was no unanimity of opinion as to the facts of economic life or as to national policy”? Or that old “political platforms were not applicable to new problems”? Or that party “politics became confused and shrewd political leaders were at a loss which way to turn”?—that the “result was uncertainty, vacillation, and inconsistency.”
Will historical writers say about our time that intense “partisan bitterness…and the impulse to seize upon any issue which would at once enlist the public’s enthusiasm and put the other party in the wrong was very powerful”? Will they observe that the “whole financial system…was in chaos….The whole government from top to bottom was rotten with the senility of what was antiquated and the instability of what was improvised”? Will they tell us that our period was “poor in purpose and barren in results”?
Who can know? But the observations above seem to me eerily similar to commentary and analysis of our current national condition. It, however, was written about the period in American history between about 1860 and 1890. Walter Millis chronicled all this and much more in his book “The Martial Spirit,” written in 1931. Mr. Millis reminds us of only one of many destructive government policies we follow.
The word martial suggests war and military force. Millis’ history book largely describes our involvement in the Cuban “insurrections”—“fomented and carried on from within the United States”—and, as a result, our War with Spain. His introductory chapter explains the domestic and international events and conditions during the 1890s that led our government on a new policy path to meddle in the affairs of other countries— resulting in imperialistic skirmishes beyond our borders.
These include: the Cuban revolution; war with Spain; agitation to annex Cuba to the U. S.; the political aspirations of Theodore Roosevelt; the depression of 1893; falling gold reserves; labor unrest and the Pullman strike in Chicago; a revolution in Brazil; hostilities in Chile; a “revolution” in Hawaii trumped up by President Harrison’s minister to the native court; restoring our army and navy; and the “Manifest Destiny” doctrine that sought to extend U. S. control over all of North America and certain “outposts.” In 1895 during a boundary dispute between Great Britain and Venezuela, President Grover Cleveland’s secretary of state arrogantly told the British that the U. S. ruled the Western Hemisphere.
Of course, much of the agitation behind all this involved power-seeking politicians, overly ambitious bureaucrats, newspaper editors and opportunistic businessmen colluding with government. Their meddling stirred the social pot that simmered to embroil us in imperialistic ventures that continue to this day. History shows that this is bad policy, but we seem doomed to repeat it.Read full article » No Comments »
Something should be bothersome about this. Wonder if there will be any protestors? Is secularism a religion?
Carolina Beach to Host First Annual Carolinas Secular Conference in November 2011
For the first time Humanists, Freethinkers, Atheists and members of other secular groups across North and South Carolina are coming together to plan important initiatives for 2012 and beyond.
The last few years have seen a strong and steady growth in the number Carolinas residents openly moving away from religion and embracing a new positive natural outlook on life. They are adding rapidly to the numbers of lifelong Humanists and Atheists who make up almost 20% of American society, but go largely unrecognized in many regions of the U.S.
New, fully secular, community groups have been forming at an increasing rate across the region. They organize to volunteer around the community, address important issues of equality and social justice, raise significant sums for charity, and hold regular educational and social events for freethinkers.
Group leaders across the region are now recognizing the importance of sharing and cooperation on a wider scale, and have therefore decided to meet at Carolina Beach on November 11th, 12th and 13th to begin to build and strengthen these larger ties.
The event is sponsored by the national groups The American Humanist Association and United Coalition of Reason and hosted by the local group, the Humanists and Freethinkers of Cape Fear.
A highlight of the weekend will be the Carolinas Freethinkers Banquet, from 7PM to 11:30PM on Saturday 12th November at the Courtyard by Marriott, Carolina Beach.
The keynote banquet speaker will be Dr. Darrel Ray, author of “The God Virus”, on the subject of “Sex and Secularism: What Happens When You Leave Religion?” based on his recent study of over 10,000 survey submissions on sex lives across all faiths.
Also at the banquet will be the presentation of the Carolinas Freethinker of the Year award, recognizing outstanding work and achievement in local activism and community building. The awardee will be announced mid September.
This is an exciting milestone for the Freethinking community in this region and marks the start of a new era for the Humanism, Atheism and positive Secularism on our part of the East Coast.
Han Hills, President, Humanists and Freethinkers of Cape Fear
www.carolinassecularconference.comRead full article » No Comments »
At a bond hearing in Whiteville today, an attempt was made to get charges dropped against former RC Soles client Allen “Frog” Strickland. The deal had apparently fallen apart yesterday and DA Jon David assured me during the show this morning that they would NOT be cutting a deal. (more details at WWAY and also at the StarNews)
Several interesting developments. Bond was set at $5m for release or $1m for a GPS ankle monitor. RC cried openly in the courtroom. It was also revealed that 43 separate calls had come in from RC related to Allen Strickland to law enforcement. Three judges have warned Strickland as have two magistrates. But contact between the ex-senator and Strickland continues.
Outside the courtroom, WWAY asked Soles about his relationship with Strickland. Soles responded that he cares about Strickland and has tried to help him. When asked about the large amounts of money he has given Strickland, Soles WEPT saying he just feels bad for the boy because of his past. When asked if he planned to bail Strickland out of jail, Soles responded that he “doesn’t do that kind of thing.”
Many have speculated and strongly believe Soles is the money behind multiple bond releases for Strickland, BJ Wright and others. Soles has given them cars, homes, scooters and cash so it isn’t beyond belief that he’s been solely responsible for their bonds in spite of his protestations to the contrary. There is no connection between these young boys and ANY other monetary source other than Soles.
WWAY’s Scott Pickey asked Soles directly about his alleged sexual involvement with Strickland. Soles responded that people have said such things. The press is watching and this story just gets weirder.
For his part, I was told that Strickland didn’t have a lot to say in court. This bond is serious and it appears the walls are closing in on Soles day by day. His appearance in the courthouse today was an odd one considering the media presence and Soles lack of desire to discuss his actions publicly.Read full article » No Comments »