Whither NC

Thanks to DJC for sharing this excellent post on FB about the contrasting Democratic and Republican visions and what it means for North Carolina.  Loved this conclusion:

It was the public investment in education that drove growth in our state.
It was our dedication to environmental protections, not “regulation”, which preserved our natural beauty and led to our status as one of the top states for tourism.
It was the view of our state as a beacon of progress to the rest of the South that led to people moving here and great companies not only being founded but sticking around.
We need ideas, yes, but we also must tell the story of what made this state great. It was the people of North Carolina who did so, as [Governor Pat] McCrory would note, but it was the people working together to build progress. It was people believing in something bigger than themselves. It was people who understood that investing in education, good roads, environmental protections and fighting inequality did not mean a burden.
If McCrory’s vision was correct then Mississippi and South Carolina would be beacons of economic success. [emphasis mine] The truth is that his narrative is wrong, but it is up to all of us to respond with a narrative that reminds people of where we have been while inspiring them to move forward towards a brighter future if we hope to emerge victorious in the years ahead.
I love that point and it’s not made often enough.  South Carolina (and much of the deep South) is pretty much the Republican ideal of small government, low regulation, and regressive taxes.  But you sure don’t hear a lot about what a great success story these places are and people wanting to move there.  And North Carolina used to be like these states decades ago, but made a conscious (and progressive) choice to invest in education and infrastructure.  It’s paid huge dividends.  I would hate to have our state fall back to the level of that other Carolina.

About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

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