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Re: “Is Self-Service Beer the Trendy New Normal?

Gasoline stations ("fillin' stations" in the South) used to have people pumping gas. They don't now, except in Oregon and maybe a few other places. Some of those fillin' station employees were a lot of fun. You got to know them, and they got to know you.

But in the end, dispensing gas was not a value-added proposition and those jobs were eliminated in favor of lower prices. Many fast-food restaurants have gone to self-serve soft drinks for the same reason. I doubt that the bartending profession will go away anytime soon, but I'm not surprised to see some experimentation.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by ct on 11/10/2017 at 7:54 AM

Re: “What Should Durham Do With Its Soon-Vacant Police Headquarters?

Demolish the building and start fresh on the site with a mix of uses - small retail, office or lab space, and a whole bunch of affordable housing in a 10-12 story development that will support transit.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Durham451 on 11/10/2017 at 12:17 AM

Re: “Since 2011, Raleigh Residents Have Been Lobbying the City to Allow Backyard Cottages. What’s the Holdup?

Oh, please. Not that big bad bogey 'government' complaint again. When are we, the people, going to accept/realize that the government is really us. My city government, heck, my state government, is comprised of neighbors and work colleagues some of which I know. And if I don't know them, or agree with them, I still accept the largely democratic system that has made it possible for them to be in a position of making city/state rules.

If we have chosen to live in Raleigh (or any populated area in the USA) we have agreed to live under a constitution and rules/laws designed to protect communities as well as individuals. Most laws on the books when passed had the backing of the majority of citizens at some level (neighborhood, city, county or state). (This does not mean that they are necessarily morally right or even a great idea, but it does give legal authority until they are dismissed--by we the people.) Besides, the laws restricting my right to do what I want with my property also protect me from my neighbors actions--I don't want my next door neighbors to be able to start raising pigs, or to build a high rise to rent to college kids.

I personally like the idea of having an ADU in my backyard, and for more of them being available for housing but I also can understand how quickly this kind of building can get out of hand and cause lots of problems for others and even for property values to fall. How people are going to use/misuse ADUs needs to be carefully examined so that a majority of land owners in a given area are protected from harm and loss. (See above comments from Portland OR.) Clearly some cities in NC are beginning to see the light. Hopefully Raleigh will open its eyes before long as well.

And remember, if you are upset because you are stuck in traffic, YOU are also the traffic. Regards.

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Whozat on 11/09/2017 at 10:03 PM

Re: “Charges Against Three Defend Durham Demonstrators Dropped

As seen here, guilt doesn't matter any longer.

7 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Jane Clary Bermijo on 11/09/2017 at 9:30 PM

Re: “Charges Against Three Defend Durham Demonstrators Dropped

You do realize the real reason the KKK was brought about was for this very same reason. When the law wont punish those that deserve punishing vigilantes need to take it into their own hands. You people just left them boys wide open for a well deserved vigilante justice. Ill be following along and cheering when they get it.

14 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by John Dunn on 11/09/2017 at 5:04 PM

Re: “Since 2011, Raleigh Residents Have Been Lobbying the City to Allow Backyard Cottages. What’s the Holdup?

Hey Matthew - weren't you a big supporter of "Mr. Affordable Housing" Charles Francis? I'm pretty sure I saw you commenting platitudes more than once. You can't eliminate ADU's as but one necessary solution to address the affordable housing shortage just because there's the potential for some bad apples to take advantage...and then pretend like you care about affordable housing! If anyone is wondering why the whole discussion of ADU's fell apart a couple of years ago when all signs pointed to their moving forward, thank Oakwood for the immense political pressure they bombarded the city with. They "like" the concept of "all incomes" having housing, just so long as it's outside of Oakwood's boundaries, to keep it pure and all.

4 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by William Castle on 11/09/2017 at 2:51 PM

Re: “Charges Against Three Defend Durham Demonstrators Dropped

The comment by the Commissioners regarding moral value to the community would instill in any rational person a feeling that these commissioners should be immediately relieved of their appointments and put behind a plow and mule. As a sculptor with a foundry, whose specialty is bronze I can attest that the value of this monument artistically and for its fabrication and installation is enormous. The actions of the four communist that tore down this monument were seditious, racist and anarchist and it's unfathomable to me how any one on the sidelines watching and goading and applauding these scoundrels would not be charged with aiding and abetting in the monuments destruction, and charged just for not trying to stop those ring leaders actions. I'm a 70 year old ECU Pirate and if I had seen this going on, particularly with the police doing nothing nothing but taking pictures, I would have jumped in and started punching people out who were engaged in this desecration. Durham's prosecuting attorney needs to pony up to the job and quit coddling communist and radical racist or people will start questing his sympathies. If he can't do the job of fully enforcing the law - he needs to step aside and permit someone who will take over. This is no case for incompetence.

28 likes, 13 dislikes
Posted by Cliff Page on 11/09/2017 at 2:09 PM

Re: “Charges Against Three Defend Durham Demonstrators Dropped

David Klein, we will fight ANY army that invades our country. Southerners fought the United States in defense of the Constitution, and after a peaceful attempt to be independent was thwarted by the Lincoln administration. If you think that wrong, then you must also think the American Revolution was wrong as well. Same concept, same objective.

16 likes, 11 dislikes
Posted by David Gass on 11/09/2017 at 12:37 PM

Re: “Since 2011, Raleigh Residents Have Been Lobbying the City to Allow Backyard Cottages. What’s the Holdup?

Proponents paint a picture of homeowners building a cottage in the back yard for grandma, or for extra income. But the state Court of Appeals ruled in 2011 that any condition of owner-occupancy is unconstitutional. Without that condition, allowing backyard dwelling units would be an invitation for absentee landlords to buy older houses and put extra units in the backyards, to maximize income. Since newer neighborhoods have covenants that prohibit these things, older neighborhoods would become especially attractive to absentee landlords. The hidden nature of these units would make them hard for neighbors and police to keep an eye on.

3 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Matthew Brown on 11/09/2017 at 11:51 AM

Re: “The INDY Endorses Mark-Anthony Middleton for Durham City Council Ward 2

Anyone who has read my op-eds that have run in newspaper across the country, would know I do not support Trump. Check it out here: http://www.bluecollarcomeback.com. And for those who thought Rooks represented Ward 2, the facts are that he not only lost citywide (good guy tho he is), but he also lost more than 2-1 in the primary and in the general in the Ward 2 precincts. In the primary in his home precinct 80% of voters chose someone else. Doesn't speak well to the notion that having solitary wards would have put Rooks on the Council. He has much less support in Ward 2 then his supporters claim.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Frank Hyman on 11/09/2017 at 11:45 AM

Re: “Is Self-Service Beer the Trendy New Normal?

As part-owner and General Manager of Pour Taproom, I (Dan Enarson) was very disappointed to read Michael Burrows review since many of his assertions about our model were based on assumption, rather than journalistic due diligence. The entire piece was seemingly written without him speaking to management or any of our staff. Had he endeavored to do so, he would have found that our staff receive above what the Durham Living Wage sets as their hourly rate for employees making tips. Mr. Burrows incorrectly assumes that just because Pour isnt yet signed up with The Durham Living Wage Project, we therefore underpay our staff. That would be as incorrect for me to assume the same of The Indy Weeks employee compensation, which according to the Durham Living Wage website, is not a certified member. Neither are many downtown bars, for that matter, but this seems to be the proof for Mr. Burrows that we are inadequately compensating our staff.

Mr. Burrows review also suggests that we are a standard American chain. While we do share a logo and concept with other locations, we are independently-owned by locals who value what Durham values: community, social justice, and creativity. Thats why our locally handcrafted booths have low backs to encourage customers to lean in and foster warm connection. Our traditional beer hall style also lends itself to unrelated customers sharing space together at our locally handcrafted communal walnut tables. Mr. Burrows incorrectly assumes that because of the automated aspect of a self-serve beer wall, that somehow our customers dont engage in a centuries-old social exchange between patron and bartender. On the contrary, because our staff arent pouring drinks, it frees them up to engage customers creatively around beer styles, getting to know them personally and their drink preferences, much like a bartender.

As Mr. Burrows inferred, a bar isn't just about the beer, it's about the people servicing it. We have an excellent team of ten individuals, who care about people, know their beer and enjoy getting to know our regular patrons. They may not stand behind a traditional structure, but they're roaming and know regular customers and their tastes by name.

Again, had Mr. Burrows bothered to chat to any of us, or our local customers, maybe he would have gained a more accurate depiction of what Pour contributes to the Durham downtown vibe, beyond just the tech and self-serve experience. We understand Mr. Burrows anxieties about the future. But we dont see ourselves a marker of those, but rather a place that bring Durhamites together.

15 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Daniel Enarson on 11/09/2017 at 11:00 AM

Re: “Charges Against Three Defend Durham Demonstrators Dropped

Yeah, stupid PC police! Why can't we charge people with no evidence or testimony other than that some police officers didn't like the protest?

10 likes, 11 dislikes
Posted by MichaelB on 11/09/2017 at 10:30 AM

Re: “Pierce Freelon Could End Up on the Durham City Council After All

Give me a break

5 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by J.P. McPickleshitter on 11/09/2017 at 9:53 AM

Re: “Charges Against Three Defend Durham Demonstrators Dropped

This is bull crap when are people going to get tired of these pc police getting away with crimes and forcing their agenda on the working men and women.

28 likes, 12 dislikes
Posted by Eric Brown on 11/09/2017 at 9:11 AM

Re: “Charges Against Three Defend Durham Demonstrators Dropped

There is difference between monuments that "remind us that there are others willing to sacrifice their lives to protect us back home" and those that commemorate people who fought against the United States itself. And perhaps the issue runs deeper than your speeding-ticket analogy implies.

17 likes, 34 dislikes
Posted by David Klein on 11/09/2017 at 8:00 AM

Re: “Charges Against Three Defend Durham Demonstrators Dropped

No moral value? Apparently the commissioners have no sense of mortality. Monuments to veterans always have historical as well as moral value as they remind us that there are others willing to sacrifice their lives to protect us back home from danger. That freedom has a price.
The attorney is mistaken in his reasoning that the criminals had no recourse to remove the monument. That is not relevant to the law. When i get a ticket FOR speeding I've never had the court take into account the fact that I was not given the opportunity to eliminate the speed limit on a local level. Prosecute the criminals involved in the riot. Each one should be required to provide the money for the monuments restoration.

54 likes, 14 dislikes
Posted by Greg Pearson on 11/09/2017 at 7:36 AM

Re: “Mahavishnu Orchestra’s John McLaughlin Looks Toward Retirement After Half a Century of Groundbreaking Guitar Work

i was born in the 60s and i know him well,... i hope we keep him close in the memories of his legacy hes leaving behind,... McGlaughlin is a Music Hero
-C WILL- drummer producer, composer
www.youtube.com/skinhitters

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Cee Will on 11/09/2017 at 7:01 AM

Re: “Over Their Own Staff’s Objection, Wake Commissioners Move Forward With a $23 Million Park

Another blog noted the proximity of Matt Calabrias home address (less than a mile) to the park he championed. I wonder *why* Matt felt so strongly about not missing *this* land opportunity considering it does very little for the public, and a whole lot for the 280 homeowners.

I wonder why he never mentioned how close he lived to this park. I wonder why we are snatching up golf courses to build public parks in neighborhoods designed to be unfriendly for public access.

John Burns told me on twitter that he can walk and chew gum- so I guess we have that going for us.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by SLormand on 11/08/2017 at 5:03 PM

Re: “Since 2011, Raleigh Residents Have Been Lobbying the City to Allow Backyard Cottages. What’s the Holdup?

Oh, please. Not that big bad bogey 'government' complaint again. When are we, the people, going to accept/realize that the government is us. My city government, heck, my state government, is comprised of neighbors and work colleagues some of which I know. And if I don't know them, or even agree with them, I still accept the largely democratic system that has made it possible for them to be in a position of making city/state rules.

If we have chosen to live in Raleigh (or any populated area in the USA) we have agreed to live under a constitution and rules/laws designed to protect communities as well as individuals. Most laws on the books when passed had the backing of the majority of citizens at some level (neighborhood, city, county or state). (This does not mean that they are necessarily morally right or even a great idea, but it does give legal authority until they are dismissed--by we the people.) Besides, the laws restricting my right to do what I want with my property also protect me from my neighbors actions--I don't want my next door neighbors to be able to start raising pigs or chickens, or build a high rise to rent to college kids.

I personally like the idea of having an ADU in my backyard, and of more of them being available for housing but I also can understand how quickly this kind of building can get out of hand and cause lots of problems for others and even for property values to fall. How people are going to use/misuse ADUs needs to be carefully examined so that a majority of land owners in a given area are protected from harm and loss. (See above comments from Portland OR.) Clearly some cities in NC are beginning to see the light. Hopefully Raleigh will open its eyes before long as well.

And remember, if you are upset because you are stuck in traffic, YOU are also the traffic.

5 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Whozat on 11/08/2017 at 3:06 PM

Re: “Since 2011, Raleigh Residents Have Been Lobbying the City to Allow Backyard Cottages. What’s the Holdup?

Greetings from Portland OR. Short term rentals have been legal in Portland, OR since 2014. Airbnb sent many lobbyists to the city hall to advocate for them, however it has not turned out like they were pitching.

It is my opnion that Airbnb has been a deceptive snake and trying to appeal to the public they're wanting to enable home owners to rent out spare, unused bedrooms. We have regulations that limit rental capacity to 2-bedrooms and passed on the impression the bedrooms mean they were bonafide bedrooms and the hosts are required to live 270 days out of the year. Lending out 3 or more bedrooms require a land use review and impact study on cars sprawling all over neighborhoods.

Thanks to our city's unwillingness to enforce, it has turned into a city of shanty homes. There are homes lend out as "two bedrooms" but have beds in places that do not customarily have beds and flouting regulations by offering areas such as attics and basements as "bonus room". Consequently, there are many listings like "2 bedrooms for guests of 12". Additionally, there are listings that simply disregard the law and twist the permit around and offer 4-5 bedrooms on a 2-bedroom permit and fraudulently claim to have a permit. Real estate industry profiteers are running self-check in motels in neighborhoods and the real estate industry embracing city has been letting this slide. Now many useless and undesirable people like house flippers are sticking their grimy hands to take away housing. These flippers do "lip stick renovations" to turn them into "turn key properties" that make look nice and presentable to vacation renters. Many have code violations and work is often not done according to requirements and often involve OSHA violations.

9 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by REProfiteer on 11/08/2017 at 1:23 PM

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