“I’ve been slimed,” as Bill Murray said to Dan Aykroyd in Ghostbusters.
It happened like this: Lisa Sorg – a writer for Policy Watch – sent an email asking for an interview. Normally, I’d say, Sure. But Policy Watch isn’t a newspaper – it’s the media arm of a coalition of liberal organizations associated with the N.C. Justice Center. This wasn’t going to be a normal press interview. It would to be like talking with the press spokesman for the Democratic Party. So, I passed.
Next, Ms. Sorg wrote her article and reported I’ve sponsored a bill to cut government regulations, including environmental regulations, that will cause floods, pollute streams, and that I’d done it all for a rotten reason: To make two parcels of land I’m selling in Catawba County more valuable.
There’s a lot of politics and pure fiction going on here.
For example, I don’t own the two parcels of land.
One has been owned by the same family for sixty years. Last year, the family asked my company – Prism Real Estate – to help them sell the land. And that property is about to be sold to another family to be their new home. And not one change has been made – or proposed – by anyone that will affect the creek that runs through the property.
The same is true of the other parcel: In fact, this time, since the creek runs along the border of the property the buyer can’t build a bridge or culvert with a road over it across the creek because someone else owns the land on the other side.
Twenty minutes on the Internet would have told Ms. Sorg those facts.
More to the point, polluting the creek wouldn’t make either property more valuable. It would make each less valuable.
Ms. Sorg wrote that “last year the Neuse River experienced the worst flooding in recorded history” and added my bill will “ensure more flooding.” But she forgot to mention the Neuse River flooded due to a hurricane.
The poet Carl Sandberg once said: “If the facts are against you, argue the law. If the law is against you, argue the facts. If the law and the facts are against you, pound the table and yell like hell.”
Ms. Sorg was ‘yelling like hell’ and, I suspect, the reason has a lot to do with politics. Policy Watch and the NC Justice Center and the UNC-Center for Civil Rights are all part of the same coalition of liberal groups and, last week, I criticized the UNC-Center for spending state money to file lawsuits that promote liberal causes.
A few days later Policy Watch started hollering.