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Today is one of those days I’m glad I'm in politics.
 
I went to the groundbreaking for the James B. Hunt, Jr. Library on the Centennial Campus at N.C.State.
 
There were tributes to Hunt and his contributions to North Carolina – especially for giving NCSU the land that become the Centennial Campus.
 
“No Jim Hunt, no Centennial Campus,” Chancellor James Woodward said. He said that, along with the BellTower, the library will be of NCSU’s signature landmarks.
 
There was a presentation about the library’s mission as a “think and do” center.
 
We saw drawings for the building. It’ll be spectacular.
 
But here’s what I thought about: Jim Hunt made the Centennial Campus decision at the lowest point in his career.
 
He had just lost the 1984 Senate race to Jesse Helms. He had two months left as a lame-duck governor.
 
The mayor of Raleigh, Avery Upchurch, brought a delegation of real-estate developers in to see Hunt. They had their eyes on the land – for houses and apartments and shopping centers.
 
Hunt didn’t buy it. He had another idea: Give the land to N.C.State for a new kind of research campus – a home for the university and for private companies.
 
That’s what he did. The Centennial Campus transformed N.C.State. And the Hunt Library – and the Institute for Emerging Issues it will house – will continue transforming North Carolina.
 
That’s what politics can be.
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Comments

Woody
Friday, October 23, 2009 4:21 PM
Hunt, is he not the POS that started the Raleigh Mafia, with his 600 million dollar tax hike, and his 600 million for pork?
He called them cuts!
AdamLove
# AdamLove
Friday, October 23, 2009 5:42 PM
I don't buy it, Gary. Why should one man, regardless of his title, have the right to decide that a parcel of land would be better used housing books than people? Or better used housing books than businesses that provide food and clothing?

I'd be willing to bet that homes, apartments, and grocery stores on that land would have done more to improve the lives of North Carolinians than overly-expensive buildings filled with overpaid academics sheltered from true productivity and competition in a free market ever will.
Jay
# Jay
Tuesday, October 27, 2009 2:13 PM
"He said that, along with the BellTower, the library will be of NCSU’s signature landmarks."

You mean that Bell Tower without actual bells? Haha, Go Pack!
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