My sources are telling me that Hood — clearly acting on orders from The Boss — has issued edicts to both institutions about what can and can’t be written about, who can or cannot be cited or quoted, and that sort of thing. Hood has used the regular payments from the Pope Foundation as leverage — delaying the checks to Locke and Civitas significantly to hammer home his point.
Locke and Civitas were both HUGE critics of that 2000 bond issue. This year’s ConnectNC boondoggle? We got everything from total silence to a weak-sister, wet-noodle critique. What’s different? What changed? THIS YEAR the boss is invested heavily in Pat McCrory and his “success.”
This is far from the first time JLF/Civitas has flip-flopped on supposedly core issues, but the social media explosion of the last few years has forced Pope and his minions to resort to more overt and heavy-handed tactics to "shape" the information being presented:
McCrory called the report "a story about nothing" and was critical of both WRAL News' original report and other outlets for following and commenting on it. "This is politics at its worst and journalism at its worst," McCrory said.
He added later, "There are always going to be issues going on with the largest companies in North Carolina. When do you not meet with these companies?"
Jebus cripes. You *do not* meet with these companies when various subordinates in your administration are investigating them for violations of regs and statutes, you do not meet with them days before deciding to sell investment shares in their company, you do not meet with them when their contract with state government is on the rocks and they need help "fixing" the problem, you do not meet with them before deciding whom to appoint to boards or commissions, and you do not meet with them when one of your Departments is about to decide how much work they need to do and dollars they need to spend to clean up their act. You were right when you said this is "politics at its worst," you just should have been standing in front of a mirror when you said it.
“Long before I was elected governor, one of the hardest things I ever had to do in my life was to come home after my job was eliminated and tell Ann I didn’t have a job anymore,” the governor says in the video. When he took office in 2013, he continues, “I knew what too many families in our state were going through. Our state had the fifth highest unemployment rate in the country.”
According to a 2014 Greensboro News & Record story about McCrory’s Duke career, Duke eliminated his job as a recruiting manager in 1988, a few months before his wedding. Three weeks later, the company hired him back as its training director – a job with far more responsibility.
And it's very likely that new job didn't come as a surprise to McCrory. When you're planning on promoting somebody in this fashion, you don't keep them in the dark, lest they take a position somewhere else before they get that magic phone call. Meaning, this whole (attempted) tear-jerker about breaking the bad news to his fiancé is nothing but fiction. They probably celebrated.
Already online tonight, linked here and below, is a Ned Barnett editorial based on a lengthy interview he and I had a few days ago. If the State of North Carolina had taken my recommendations from 2010-2013 then health insurance rates for many individuals and families would be lower now in 2015, 2016 and the foreseeable future than what we are experiencing now. The editorial should appear in the print Sunday version of the N&O tomorrow. I welcome your feedback.
In a memo from that day, “The meeting began with Gov. McCrory making a few remarks and turning the meeting over to Graeme Keith. “Mr. Keith began his remarks by stating that he had been working on private prison maintenance for 10 years and during that time had given a lot of money to candidates running for public office and it was now time for him to get something in return.”
McCrory denied hearing Keith say that, according to a transcript of his interview with The N&O. McCory said, “My secretary informed me that was said probably while I was in a side conversation and I don’t know if it was said to the whole table or not, but I did not hear it.”
Riiight. You turn the meeting over to your donor buddy, and then immediately strike up a conversation with somebody else. Not bloody likely. That's one of the problems with electing somebody who doesn't see anything wrong with political patronage: They're also too stupid to avoid getting caught. And this explanation from Keith made me bark in laughter:
Governor McCrory and the state legislature support wildlife killing fields. For effortless deer kills, North Carolina allows property owners to lure state animals onto private property and then fence them for slaughter. Private deer farms also supply animals for the death sport. Killing captive animals does not fall under the definition of hunting. It is death for pleasure.
He said the people of North Carolina support drilling. Does he have any basis in reality for that statement? Or by “people of North Carolina” does he mean his friends in the oil and gas industry?
It’d be nice if he could wrap his mind around wind and solar and talk to his buddies at Duke Energy about that.
Pat McCrory and "reality" seldom cross paths, and when they do, he usually gets all upset and shakes his fists at it. Art Pope really doesn't need to be in the administration anymore, he's already done his work to promote the Koch Brothers' agenda, and it will take years to get the stink of the fossil fuel industry out of the halls of our state government.
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