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Fact-checking President Trump's CPAC speech
Washington Post
President Trump's speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference at National Harbor in Maryland was littered with some of the president's favorite and frequently cited falsehoods. Here's a roundup of 13 of his more dubious claims, listed in the ...

Politico

Priebus request to FBI violated norms, if not rules
Politico
For decades, presidents from both parties have prohibited White House staff from discussing specific investigations and enforcement cases without clearance from the White House counsel. The rules were developed to prevent even the appearance of ...

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In Kim Jong-nam's Death, North Korea Lets Loose a Weapon of Mass Destruction
New York Times
The Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Malaysia on Friday. The terminal where Kim Jong-nam was assassinated with VX nerve agent on Feb. 13 will be decontaminated despite the passage of time, the police said. Credit Associated Press.

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Alleghany News » ) [wfw:commentRss] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/sports/6862/video-lady-husky-video-highlights/feed ) [slash:comments] => Array ( [value] => 0 ) [enclosure] => Array ( [attr] => Array ( [url] => http://jeffersonpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Girls-season-highlights.m4v [length] => 35235505 [type] => video/mp4 ) ) ) [5] => Array ( [title] => Array ( [value] => Third annual downhill race returns to Mount Jefferson in April ) [link] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/news/6861/third-annual-downhill-race-returns-to-mount-jefferson-in-april ) [comments] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/news/6861/third-annual-downhill-race-returns-to-mount-jefferson-in-april#respond ) [pubDate] => Array ( [value] => Fri, 24 Feb 2017 14:35:07 +0000 ) [dc:creator] => Array ( [value] => Jefferson Post ) [category] => Array ( [0] => Array ( [value] => News ) [1] => Array ( [value] => Top Stories ) ) [guid] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/?p=6861 [attr] => Array ( [isPermaLink] => false ) ) [description] => Array ( [value] => On April 21st, 22nd and 23rd, 2017 skateboarders from across the country will gather in West Jefferson, North Carolina to compete in the state’s third annual sanctioned downhill skateboard race. The event will be held at the picturesque location of Mt. Jefferson State Natural Area. Designed and organized by North Carolina Downhill (NCDH), in collaboration […] ) [content:encoded] => Array ( [value] =>

On April 21st, 22nd and 23rd, 2017 skateboarders from across the country will gather in West Jefferson, North Carolina to compete in the state’s third annual sanctioned downhill skateboard race.

The event will be held at the picturesque location of Mt. Jefferson State Natural Area. Designed and organized by North Carolina Downhill (NCDH), in collaboration with North Carolina State Parks, Appalachian State University’s Human Powered Transportation Club, and the Ian Tilmann Foundation.

The race course features two miles of pristine pavement with three hairpins, connected by blazing fast sweepers, smooth asphalt, with plenty of passing and drafting opportunities at speeds over 50mph, with all necessary steps taken to close the road and ensure rider/spectator safety.

Straw bales will be carefully placed along the length of the 2 mile race course will serve as protective barriers on corners for the riders and spectators alike. Audience members will watch on and cheer as racers speed down the curvy mountain road competing for the top prize.

To accommodate the spectators we have worked with the county and local business to provide a shuttle bus that will transport people up and down the hill as necessary. We have also provided bleachers in the main overlook turn for people to sit on as well as food vendors on site.

Schedule:

April 21st – Freeride

April 22nd – Practice

April 23rd – Race

The first race brought 66 registered riders from around the world, including the event winner and three time world champion Kevin Reimer, as well as over 400 spectators (despite torrential rain on race day).

The second year of the event brought 89 riders from across the world as far as China, Canada, Australia, and California. Spectators totaled well over 1000 over a two day period, the most ever in the parks 50 year history.

For the 2017 event, we are expanding the rider cap, adding a freeride day, and including the luge category. The additional registration slots will be available for the freeride day on Friday, and will not require participants to wear full leather body suits typically only used in races.

The total rider cap has been limited to 150 participants including registration spots available in open downhill skateboard, women’s downhill skateboard, luge, and freeride only categories. It is our hope that this will be more inclusive to all gravity sports enthusiasts. The 3rd annual North Carolina Downhill Skateboard Race at Mt. Jefferson will without a doubt be a race to remember.

This year NCDH is aiming to set a precedent for downhill events, so with Saturday April 22nd being Earth Day, we have placed an emphasis on environmental, social, and economic sustainability. By partnering with the NC State Parks we hope to bring awareness around environmental stewardship, with an emphasis on conservation of our state parks system through recreational activities that encourage education of the natural and cultural heritage of Mt Jefferson. In addition, we hope to serve our community by providing helmets to skateboarders under the helmets for a promise campaign sponsored by the Ian Tilmann Foundation, and we are happy to report that over 90 helmets were given away to skaters last year. Finally, by hosting an event that draws this many participants and community members, we hope to invigorate the local economy by working with local business to provide the materials and facilities necessary to orchestrate an event of this caliber.

As always, spectating at the event is free, but if you would like to participate, the entry fee for this event will be set at $175 for all three days, $145 for practice and race day, and $75 for the freeride only, with registration a link available at NCdownhill.com

For additional information/questions regarding the event, please contact

Bailey Winecoff at 704-789-3181 or at ncdownhill@gmail.com

http://jeffersonpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/web1_Longboard.jpg

Staff Report

) [wfw:commentRss] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/news/6861/third-annual-downhill-race-returns-to-mount-jefferson-in-april/feed ) [slash:comments] => Array ( [value] => 0 ) ) [6] => Array ( [title] => Array ( [value] => Welcoming the stranger: A Christian activist responds to Trump’s immigration order ) [link] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/opinion/6859/welcoming-the-stranger-a-christian-activist-responds-to-trumps-immigration-order ) [comments] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/opinion/6859/welcoming-the-stranger-a-christian-activist-responds-to-trumps-immigration-order#respond ) [pubDate] => Array ( [value] => Fri, 24 Feb 2017 14:00:14 +0000 ) [dc:creator] => Array ( [value] => Jefferson Post ) [category] => Array ( [value] => Opinion ) [guid] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/?p=6859 [attr] => Array ( [isPermaLink] => false ) ) [description] => Array ( [value] => On Friday, Jan. 27, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that severely restricts immigration from seven Muslim countries, suspends all refugee admission for 120 days, and bars all Syrian refugees indefinitely. Even though the courts have temporarily blocked the President’s actions on immigration and refugees, this is only a temporary halt to the ban. […] ) [content:encoded] => Array ( [value] =>

On Friday, Jan. 27, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that severely restricts immigration from seven Muslim countries, suspends all refugee admission for 120 days, and bars all Syrian refugees indefinitely. Even though the courts have temporarily blocked the President’s actions on immigration and refugees, this is only a temporary halt to the ban. Meanwhile, the mere introduction of these harsh restrictions on immigration and refugee resettlement has serious, long-term consequences for our new political landscape.

I have been encouraged to see many of my fellow Christians and clergy of all faiths denouncing the ban and the halt of refugee resettlement, with some even going as far as to declare the executive orders “not Christian.” I have seen dear friends and colleagues posting about how “Jesus was a dark-skinned, Middle Eastern refugee.” I know, I’ve been saying this for years. I’ve also seen a great deal of quoting from the Bible about how we ought to treat refugees. While I recognize the ways that Scripture can be used to argue both sides of many issues, I absolutely agree that xenophobia has no place in our Holy Scriptures.

One of the things I hear most often in my work is that immigrants need to just “get in line and do it the legal way.” For people who genuinely believe that, I encourage you to educate yourselves on our immigration system. There is no one “line” to get into; it is a process that takes years due to the backlog in our system, and refugee screening is the most extreme vetting process of any group that arrives to the United States. Moreover, many of the people who are affected by this ban are the people who have waited in line, followed the rules, and are here legally. Leaving one’s home is a serious matter, and people have the right to move. When I think of everyone who said that they would move to Canada if one candidate or the other was elected, I’m aware that they felt they had a right to leave their homes and move elsewhere if they were unhappy with the result of our political elections. For those of us who take for granted the right to “life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness,” that freedom is a given.

Families who are fleeing war-torn countries are among the most needy and vulnerable people on our planet. This includes people not only from countries like Syria which are being devastated by civil war, but also countries in Latin America that have their own civil wars fueled by the drug trade and gang violence. In his Sermon on the Mount Jesus said, “In everything do to others as you would have them do to you; for this is the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 7:12). As I wrote this blog, Chapel Hill, just a few miles down the street from me, was without safe drinking water and UNC was urging students to leave for the weekend (while at the same time faculty members were asking for greater protections for students in wake of the travel ban). I think about how I have seen the community respond to residents of Chapel Hill, offering them gallons of potable water, showers, and bathroom facilities –but we cannot offer safety and refuge to our neighbors who arrive from other countries or who practice a different religion than our own?

I am not in any way grateful for or approving of this ban; however, if there is anything good to glean from these recent executive orders, it is that we are entering into a national dialogue about what our shared values are and who “deserves” to be here. As a white female, I cannot speak directly to the immigrant experience, yet I would dare to say that being harassed in airports is not new for many people who look like “the other.” What is different is that now people are showing up en masse at airports to protest this discrimination. Islamophobia and racism are not new to America; What is changing in our current political context is that the Trump administration is trying to legalize discrimination, and this cannot be ignored. We have been living as a nation that permits subtle racism and xenophobia; however, this is a galvanizing moment when the truth of our sin of racism is being made clear, and we realize that consequences are unavoidable.

I understand that some people have legitimate safety concerns around our borders but I believe that we can be secure and humane at the same time. In the parable of the Good Samaritan, the true neighbor was the one who helped the stranded traveler even when it was costly (Luke10:25-37). The denial of refugees contradicts who we claim to be as a nation, let alone who we say we are as followers of Christ. To turn people away in their deepest moments of need does not reflect the values of a country built on the ideals of liberty and equality. To detain people and keep them away from their families does not represent a land of the free. When we turn away the refugee, we turn away the orphan, the sojourner, people whom we are consistently reminded to care for in scripture. To protect our own safety and way of life at the expense of vulnerable others is to deny the life Jesus lived and the teachings he passed on to us as Christians. Let us be in prayer for our country and all its citizens, show compassion to those who may not be able to see loved ones because of the order, and be quick to listen. I pray that our nation’s leaders will choose to lead with compassion rather than fear.

Jennie Belle is the Director of Immigration and Farmworkers at the NC Council of Churches.

http://jeffersonpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/web1_Jennie-Belle.jpg

By Jennie Belle

NC Council of Churches

) [wfw:commentRss] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/opinion/6859/welcoming-the-stranger-a-christian-activist-responds-to-trumps-immigration-order/feed ) [slash:comments] => Array ( [value] => 0 ) ) [7] => Array ( [title] => Array ( [value] => Letter to the Editor ) [link] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/opinion/6857/letter-to-the-editor-7 ) [comments] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/opinion/6857/letter-to-the-editor-7#respond ) [pubDate] => Array ( [value] => Fri, 24 Feb 2017 13:00:11 +0000 ) [dc:creator] => Array ( [value] => Jefferson Post ) [category] => Array ( [value] => Opinion ) [guid] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/?p=6857 [attr] => Array ( [isPermaLink] => false ) ) [description] => Array ( [value] => I just read the front page article about April Eicher winning McDonald’s Outstanding Restaurant Manager Award for the second time. I want to congratulate Ms. Eicher on this achievement and compliment her on her management skills. Good managers are few and far between. Having the ability to lead and direct a group of people and […] ) [content:encoded] => Array ( [value] =>

I just read the front page article about April Eicher winning McDonald’s Outstanding Restaurant Manager Award for the second time. I want to congratulate Ms. Eicher on this achievement and compliment her on her management skills. Good managers are few and far between. Having the ability to lead and direct a group of people and effectively build a cohesive team requires an unusual and special talent not learned in any classroom.

Another top-notch leader we’ve been privileged to have in Ashe County is our recently retired Sheriff, James Williams. My husband and I have followed Sheriff Williams’ career in law enforcement since 1988 when he came to our home as a Deputy Sheriff to investigate a burglary. He did such an outstanding job, going above and beyond anything we would have expected from an investigating officer. We were so impressed that we paid attention when he became Chief of Police in West Jefferson and then years later when he was elected Sheriff of Ashe County. When we saw the huge majority of votes he got we knew we were not the only people impressed with his abilities and work ethics! We were sorry to see Sheriff Williams retire but we had no worries about law enforcement in the county. He had run the Department in such a professional manner, training and developing skilled personnel to replace him.

So a big THANK YOU to both April Eicher and James Williams for your commitment to excellence! You have made Ashe County a better place to live.

Susan Spurlock

) [wfw:commentRss] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/opinion/6857/letter-to-the-editor-7/feed ) [slash:comments] => Array ( [value] => 0 ) ) [8] => Array ( [title] => Array ( [value] => Let’s Foster More New Businesses ) [link] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/opinion/6856/lets-foster-more-new-businesses ) [comments] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/opinion/6856/lets-foster-more-new-businesses#respond ) [pubDate] => Array ( [value] => Fri, 24 Feb 2017 04:15:18 +0000 ) [dc:creator] => Array ( [value] => Jefferson Post ) [category] => Array ( [value] => Opinion ) [guid] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/?p=6856 [attr] => Array ( [isPermaLink] => false ) ) [description] => Array ( [value] => RALEIGH — In today’s highly polarized climate, can we get our politicians to agree anything? Well, I can think of at least proposition that attracts nearly universal assent: small business is the backbone of a thriving, broad-based economy. I agree with it, myself, with some caveats. First, small businesses don’t exist in a separate universe […] ) [content:encoded] => Array ( [value] =>

RALEIGH — In today’s highly polarized climate, can we get our politicians to agree anything? Well, I can think of at least proposition that attracts nearly universal assent: small business is the backbone of a thriving, broad-based economy.

I agree with it, myself, with some caveats. First, small businesses don’t exist in a separate universe from large ones. Many small firms are, in fact, highly dependent on the health of big corporations, for which they serve as contractors or vendors.

The second caveat is that when it comes to job creation specifically, small businesses play an outsized role not because of their size but because of their average age. It’s actually new companies that generate a disproportionate share of net new jobs. Many of them are small. But some small businesses never grow much. And some new firms that start out small keep growing rapidly even after they get large.

With all that having been said, politicians are right to stress the importance of small businesses and new enterprises. Unfortunately, they don’t always align their policy focus with their rhetoric. They chase big business “buffaloes” and concoct elaborate corporate-welfare schemes that have little relevance to entrepreneurs.

I’m pleased to report that in recent years, North Carolina policymakers have largely avoided this trap. The Republican-led General Assembly and the administration of former Gov. Pat McCrory focused on broad reforms of taxation, regulation, infrastructure, and education. While targeted corporate subsidies haven’t disappeared, they have diminished as a share of both the tax code and the political discourse.

The results are clear. The Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council produces an annual “Small Business Policy Index” that includes a variety of state and local variables. In 2012, North Carolina ranked 37th — dead last in the Southeast. We fared particularly poorly on measures of marginal tax rates and regulatory burdens. Beginning in 2013, state policymakers have worked hard to reduce those impediments. Now, according to the 2017 Small Business Policy Index, North Carolina ranks 14th in the country and 4th among the 12 Southeastern states.

But do these policy variables really influence business formation and growth? The answer is yes. Empirical research and common sense confirm that where the cost of starting and running new enterprises is higher, you’ll tend to find fewer of them than you otherwise would. That doesn’t mean all the entrepreneurial action drains away from high-cost locations, of course. It just means that, everything else being equal, your local or state economy will fare better if you ease government’s burden on small and new businesses.

The latest entrepreneurship measures from the Kauffman Foundation confirm that North Carolina is doing well in this area. Among the 25 most-populous states, we ranked 8th in 2016 in both startup activity and in “growth entrepreneurship,” which measures how quickly those startups expand.

How can we boost our performance still more? One good idea would be to work on North Carolina’s capital-gains tax. The tax codes of the federal government and some states treat capital gains differently from other streams of income. While wages are deductible to employers and then taxed when received by employees, capital gains get taxed in multiple ways — first by taxes on the money to be invested, then by taxes on corporate income, and then when the capital gain is realized.

North Carolina ranks 31st in its tax rate on capital gains. A simple way to move up the rankings would be to follow the lead of South Carolina. While its personal income tax rate of 7 percent is higher than our 5.49 percent, its tax rate on long-term capital gains is only 3.9 percent, ranking it 16th. That’s because it allows taxpayers to exclude some of their capital gains from taxable income.

We could do that, too. Lawmakers could even phase the exclusion in slowly over time if they wish. By reducing the tax bias against capital formation, we would make it more attractive to start or invest in new companies in North Carolina. Can I get an amen?

(File photo) John Hood is chairman of the John Locke Foundation and appears on the talk show “NC SPIN.” You can follow him @JohnHoodNC.
http://jeffersonpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/web1_hood-1-1-2.jpg(File photo) John Hood is chairman of the John Locke Foundation and appears on the talk show “NC SPIN.” You can follow him @JohnHoodNC.

By John Hood

) [wfw:commentRss] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/opinion/6856/lets-foster-more-new-businesses/feed ) [slash:comments] => Array ( [value] => 0 ) ) [9] => Array ( [title] => Array ( [value] => The Walker Center presents The Bellamy Brothers on March 10 ) [link] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/news/6854/the-walker-center-presents-the-bellamy-brothers-on-march-10 ) [comments] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/news/6854/the-walker-center-presents-the-bellamy-brothers-on-march-10#respond ) [pubDate] => Array ( [value] => Thu, 23 Feb 2017 20:50:13 +0000 ) [dc:creator] => Array ( [value] => Jefferson Post ) [category] => Array ( [value] => News ) [guid] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/?p=6854 [attr] => Array ( [isPermaLink] => false ) ) [description] => Array ( [value] => WILKESBORO – The Walker Center, on the campus of Wilkes Community College, will present the legendary country duo The Bellamy Brothers on Friday, March 10, at 8 p.m. This performance is sponsored by Carolina West Wireless. For 40 years, the Bellamy Brothers have been crafting honest, heartfelt songs that connect with millions of listeners around […] ) [content:encoded] => Array ( [value] =>

WILKESBORO – The Walker Center, on the campus of Wilkes Community College, will present the legendary country duo The Bellamy Brothers on Friday, March 10, at 8 p.m. This performance is sponsored by Carolina West Wireless.

For 40 years, the Bellamy Brothers have been crafting honest, heartfelt songs that connect with millions of listeners around the world. Even more remarkable is the fact that they’ve remained relevant in a genre that has become increasingly enamored with style over substance, glitz over grit, and fleeting celebrity over artistic vision. Yet Howard and David Bellamy have weathered the trends admirably, enjoying enormous success throughout their career with numerous No. 1 hits on both the pop and country charts.

The brothers developed their own sound by the early ‘70s and scored the biggest hit of their career in 1976 with “Let Your Love Flow,” named by BMI as one of the Top 100 Songs of the Century. The song was a smash in both the U.S. and Europe, helping establish an international fan base. The Brothers produced more than a dozen chart-topping singles in the U.S. and Europe. “If I Said You Had a Beautiful Body (Would You Hold It Against Me),” “Sugar Daddy,” “Dancin’ Cowboys,” “Do You Love as Good as You Look,” “Redneck Girl,” “When I’m Away from You,” “I Need More of You,” “Old Hippie,” “Kids of the Baby Boom,” “Too Much Is Not Enough,” “Crazy from the Heart,” “Santa Fe,” and “I Could Be Persuaded” are some of the Bellamy’s Top Ten hits on the pop/rock and country charts.

A limited number of tickets are available for this performance. For more information or to purchase tickets, contact the Walker Center Box Office at 336-838-6260 or walker.boxoffice@wilkescc.edu. Visit the Walker Center online at www.walkercenteronline.org or on Facebook.

) [wfw:commentRss] => Array ( [value] => http://jeffersonpost.com/news/6854/the-walker-center-presents-the-bellamy-brothers-on-march-10/feed ) [slash:comments] => Array ( [value] => 0 ) ) ) ) ) ) -->
What to do with the ACMS building
With the pending construction of a new Ashe County Middle School, we have the question of what to do with the present facility in Warrensville. ... More
2:00pm, February 24, 2017
ACMS releases spring sports schedules
WARRENSVILLE — The spring sports season is here for Ashe County Middle School with the first baseball and softball games scheduled for March 9 and ... More
1:45pm, February 24, 2017
We are failing too many children and paying a steep price for it
North Carolina is failing far too many children, especially those “at-risk.” Few dispute that conclusion but fewer still agree on solutions to the problem. The ... More
12:00pm, February 24, 2017
Could a commissioner become next county maintenance director?
JEFFERSON-Could a sitting member of the Ashe County Board of Commissioners be hired as the county’s next maintenance director? Ashe County Manager Sam Yearick said ... More
11:09am, February 24, 2017
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