Is it Spring yet?
From the press release at his website:
Williams Announces Bid to Restore Integrity to District Attorney Office
Attorney Todd M. Williams of Asheville announced that he has filed as a Democrat running for election to the Office of District Attorney for the 28th Judicial District. The Primary is May 6.
“The Office of District Attorney should be renowned for its fairness and integrity in pursuit of justice. In seeking justice, the office must safeguard the rights and reputations of the innocent,” Williams said. “To regain this reputation and trust, we need new leadership that will demonstrate the highest degree of integrity and professionalism. I offer to provide that leadership.”
Williams believes transparency will be essential to renewing public trust in the Office of the District Attorney.
Local and national media have documented the Office’s lack of transparency. Documents in the public interest were suppressed. Innocence Commission hearings resulted in overturning murder convictions that had kept young men in jail for years.
“These events have tarnished the public perception of the openness of the Office of District Attorney,” Williams said. “That perception harms our criminal justice system.”
Williams has nearly 15 years of experience as a defense attorney. He has served as Assistant Capital Defender, Assistant Senior Public Defender, and Assistant Public Defender for nine years in Buncombe County. Williams said he is ready to transition from defense to prosecution within the criminal justice system.
“Defense attorneys and prosecutors are united in seeking justice. The players are different, but, in a well-run system, we are all on the same team,” Williams said. “The most pressing need in our criminal justice system is the need for new leadership in the Office of District Attorney. We need to rebuild public trust, increase consistency, and increase professionalism. I am ready to step up and deliver that new leadership.”
Williams, 45, is a North Carolina native and long-time Buncombe County resident. He and his wife Catherine have a 14-month old daughter. Williams serves on the board of Green Opportunities. He is also an investor in a local business, Wedge Brewing Company.
“I am committed to making our community an even safer place to live and raise a family,” Williams said.
“It will be my honor to bring a fresh, measured approach to the Office of District Attorney, which will be efficient, responsive to law enforcement, and fair to defendants that are brought before the court for prosecution,” Williams said.
Williams earned his undergraduate degree at UNC-Chapel Hill and his J.D. from Northeastern Law School. Williams has been practicing law in North Carolina since 2000. In addition to serving on the board of Green Opportunities, Williams volunteers on Democratic campaigns and is a past Commissioner of the Historic Resources Commission of Asheville and Buncombe County.
For more information about the District Attorney Race in Buncombe County NC visit www.WilliamsforDA.com
I’ve known Todd Williams for years, and I know him to be trustworthy, hardworking, intelligent, and fair. He’s also got guts. It takes a lot of guts to take on a long-time incumbent, so I hope you’ll take some time to get to know the candidates and make your decision based on your values.
From the Mountain Housing Opportunities website:
“Momma, when are we ever going to get a house?” It was a question Treva Williams’ youngest daughter, Cierra, always asked.
After 13 ½ years of living with five people in a two-bedroom apartment in River Glen apartments, Treva knew that it was time to take a leap of faith.
While living in the Mountain Housing Opportunities River Glen apartment complex, she received a mailing about the organization’s Self Help Home Ownership program. MHO’s Self-Help Homeownership program provides families and individuals in Buncombe County with low or moderate income an opportunity to achieve the American Dream of homeownership. The program makes owning homes affordable by allowing families to contribute “sweat equity” construction hours to reduce the cost of their homes. Families work together to build their homes under the guidance of an MHO construction supervisor. They invest “sweat equity” by helping to build not only their own home but all of the homes in the group, with no one moving in until all of the houses are complete.
“I took the mailing as a sign that I needed to look into this program, “ said Treva. “I knew it was a God given opportunity for me and my family.”
Your Buncombe County Democratic Party needs you. We’re getting organized to make some change in 2014 elections, and every registered Democrat is invited to be a part of it. After the jump please find the time and location of your precinct meeting. Not sure which precinct you’re in? Use this handy tool.
Several stories about hunger in America popped up this weekend, a couple online and another just down my street. Among people you wouldn’t identify as poor and struggling just by looking at them. PBS Newshour reported on women in Denver who fell into poverty, women who don’t fit popular stereotypes of people on SNAP.
CAROLINE POOLER: Any one of your fellow peers, colleagues or fellow parishioners may be hungry, but you don’t know that about them, because people don’t want to advertise that about themselves. There’s lots of people out there who do not have enough to eat until next payday. There’s a lot of working people who give their last five bucks to their kid for lunch and they go without. And so that’s kind of a different face of hunger than people are thinking of hunger.
Over at Crooks and Liars, Susie Madrak reposted Jenn’s story from Poor As Folk blog, “Living in poverty is like being punched in the face over and over and over on a daily basis”
That brings me to the hunger. The hunger is extraordinary. There is a constant gnawing in your stomach, an empty feeling that has taken up permanent residence. Even as you’re eating a meal, you feel the hunger. It never goes away because you don’t know when you’re going to eat again…
As food stamp benefits continue to be cut and food pantries struggle to feed communities, that uncertainty will just continue. I hate to think of my children feeling the same way. They get first dibs on all food that comes through this house. There are many days when my kids get their three meals and I get half of one and my husband … well, I never see him because he is working all the time, but he barely eats, too.
A chance meeting my wife had this week brought the problem home. This is the story pretty much in her own words: Read More→
Asheville will be a bit less bright without Laurey Masterton.
What need does it fill for these sophomoric billionaires to dress in drag? At New York Magazine, Kevin Roose shares his adventures in 1% Land at the annual gathering of the Kappa Beta Phi, “a secret fraternity, founded at the beginning of the Great Depression, that functioned as a sort of one-percenter’s Friars Club.”
“Good evening, Exalted High Council, former Grand Swipes, Grand Swipes-in-waiting, fellow Wall Street Kappas, Kappas from the Spring Street and Montgomery Street chapters, and worthless neophytes!”
Chris Hayes had the author as a guest last night:
Roose had several observations about this august bunch:
The second thing I realized was that Kappa Beta Phi was, in large part, a fear-based organization. Here were executives who had strong ideas about politics, society, and the work of their colleagues, but who would never have the courage to voice those opinions in a public setting. Their cowardice had reduced them to sniping at their perceived enemies in the form of satirical songs and sketches, among only those people who had been handpicked to share their view of the world. And the idea of a reporter making those views public had caused them to throw a mass temper tantrum.
G: What I think is really interesting as well is that we’ve seen a separation in capitalism. There is the traditional capitalism of the worker and the factory owner, but now what we’ve seen is the rise of a financial class, which is even harmful to the traditional capitalists themselves.
Prof. H: That’s right. Instead of industrial capitalism, if you look at writers from the 19th century, everybody from Marx to business school professors expected the destiny of industrial capitalism to be to bring finance out of the medieval period into the modern period. The idea was to make banks serve the industrial system. That’s what the Saint Simonians advocated in France. They were the idealists of the 19th century. They developed the idea of investment banking that the Reichsbank and the large German banks did most effectively. It’s what Japan did after WW2, simply because they didn’t have any other source of money except by their ability to create their own credit through industrial banking.
Nobody expected that finance capitalism would dominate and ultimately stifle industrial capitalism. But that’s what’s happening.
All the futurists, even socialists, were optimists about capitalism. They thought it was going to evolve naturally into socialism, with an increasing government role in the economy to provide infrastructure, including banking. Instead, you have governments being carved up. That’s what neoliberalism is. It’s really neofeudalism. It’s a dismantling of democracy in favor of a financial oligarchy, to rule by appointing proconsuls and technocrats such as you have in Italy under Monti or in Greece under Papademos. You have a rolling back of history, and of the Enlightenment. If your college curriculum, your religion and the popular press doesn’t even talk about the enlightenment and about the history of economic thought, you’re not going to realize that what’s happening is a rolling back of the last 500 years.
And based on what’s happening in North Carolina, you thought we were only rolling things back 50 years.