Here’s a caricature of how government works North Carolina style: The Chairman of the Wildlife Commission, who naturally got his job by giving money to Governor Perdue, orders the Commission’s CEO to write a nice article about the Governor and publish it in the next edition of their magazine and mail it out to hunters and fishermen.
The CEO has a glowing article written, sends it out and back comes a disgruntled letter from an unhappy hunter who in effect says, ‘What’s this bull – this one fails the ‘smell test’ – and then adds some unflattering comments about the Governor.
The magazine’s editor (who obviously is new to the ways of North Carolina politics) then publishes the hunter’s ‘Letter to the Editor’ in the next edition of the magazine. And all hell breaks loose.
As soon as Governor Perdue’s Donor/Chairman sees the letter in his magazine he has heart-lock; when he recovers he orders the CEO to ‘recall’ every copy of the magazine he can lay his hands on.
But, before the recalled magazines can be shredded or burned, the News and Observer gets wind of what’s going on, calls the Governor and asks a question that must have gone something like this: How much is it costing taxpayers to shred that magazine because it had one letter in it criticizing you?
The order goes out immediately from the Governor’s office: The press is on our heels, don’t shred the magazine, go ahead and send it out.
Next the Chairman and CEO tell reporters with straight faces that neither of them ever had one qualm about publishing that letter lambasting that Governor. Then – still without blushing – they tell the press the real reason the magazine was recalled was an unrelated mistake made by the Editor.
And what happened to the poor editor? Who’s now, no doubt, a wiser man – having learned stepping on Governor Perdue’s toes is no way to pursue a career in North Carolina state government.
He hasn’t been seen or heard from.