Mark Binker is a fine writer for the Greensboro News & Record, whose blog is a regular haunt for those who want to know what’s really going on in the General Assembly in Raleigh. His stories on the legislative session that just ended are invaluable if you want clear reporting that actually tells you what our fearless leaders have done for, and to, us. If you want to know more about how your state tax money is being spent, start here, with Binker’s overall report on the recent legislative session.
If you read nothing else, though, do not miss Binker’s report on “The Great Pimento Cheese Debate.” He tells, with detail that is both unsettling and hilarious, how the House — at the tail-end of the session, when they were still negotiating ethics legislation — spent nearly a half-hour “debating” a bill to exempt some rural mom-and-pop stores from food inspection rules. It turns out that some of these little stores, which sell homemade pimento cheese sandwiches, as well as peanut butter and banana sandwiches and the like, have been effectively shut down by food inspectors who apparently have no respect for one of the South’s most distinctive culinary inventions. Read Binker’s report and you’ll get a great, ground-level view of the legislative process and, as they say, how the sausage is made. Or in this case, how the pimento cheese is mixed.