Puppet Swings

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In a local squabble reminiscent of infighting around Connecticut for Lieberman, Hairdresser Puppet Joe Boylan tells a Pilot reporter that he doesn't know how to pull strings the way the Puppetmaster does.

The Moore County Republican Party's Executive Committee has adopted a resolution asking state Rep.-elect Joe Boylan to help squelch the actions of one of his supporters. The resolution doesn't name Boylan backer Ed Kennedy, though it clearly refers to him.

"I don't have any more control over Mr. Kennedy's actions than I do over those of supporters of my opponent," Boylan said Thursday.

(Note to Boylan: You have no opponent. You won. Get your talking points straight.)

Puppetmaster Pope must be pissed. Here he went and spent a ton of corporate money to win himself another seat in the House, and his Chosen One can't control his minions. Not a good sign.

Kennedy is trying to have several members of the Executive Committee brought up on party disloyalty charges for supporting unaffiliated candidate Bud Shaver in the November election. He wants all of former state Rep. Richard Morgan's supporters stripped from their leadership positions in the party. Some of the Morgan supporters, whom Kennedy calls "Morganites," supported Shaver in November. Boylan defeated Morgan in the May 2 Republican primary. Shaver was one of two unaffiliated candidates who challenged Boylan in the general election. Shaver is a registered Republican.

The Party of Greed's "big tent" looks to be showing some signs of strain. Which is to be expected given the purification practices endorsed and executed by the Puppetmaster himself.

The resolution calls for Boylan to use his influence to put a muzzle on Kennedy. Kennedy has called the Shaver supporters "traitors" and worse. He hopes to have the state Executive Committee strip Joan Thurman and Lorraine and Bob Tweed of their leadership positions within the local GOP. The state party did the same thing to Morgan in 2004, accusing him of party disloyalty because of the power-sharing deal he cut with Democrats in 2003 that made him co-speaker of the House.


The resolution goes on to condemn Kennedy, though it doesn't name him, for calling party officials "evil, hateful, hate-mongers, traitors, cowards, hypocrites, vengeful, cancers, saboteurs," and "despicable." It calls Kennedy's actions harassment and outs him as a former Democrat who changed his affiliation only two years ago.

Go read the whole Pilot story . . . it's a good one. And send a note to the reporter, Matthew Moriarity. moriarty@thepilot.com.


A Virus

Here in Moore County there has to be a terrible virus in the water. "The Pilot's" letters to the editor section is always full of the most hateful and vituperative comment. The Republican Party here, as well as the Democratic Party, often turns into a blood sport where the injured are executed on the field of battle. Council meetings are often the scene of citizen comment so angry that they resemble a lynch mob. No difference of opinion is too small not to be considered rank heresy.

I've often wondered if the rest of North Carolina suffers from the same virus.

I'm 56 years old. I moved to North Carolina five years ago. The previous twenty-five years I spent as a resident of Chicago's north shore and before that Wisconsin, Utah and California. I live in Moore County. My Congressman is Howard Coble, my State Sen


a letter to the editor by Pinehurst resident Peter Mulcahy, 5-13-05 may have some insight.

...Just a personal observation: You people have too much time on your hands. Get a job. Volunteer. Stop reading every line in a committee report. In short, get a life.

I know you were once important, had a big job and bossed around a lot of people, but down here all they care about is the last time you broke 80. So learn to live with it and lighten up...

Couldn't have said it better myself, SPLib.

Moore County becomes an awfully small pond with a lot of people wanting to be "big fish". I think that's probably typical of a place where there are so many retirees - people who are used to working, being important, etc., and now have so much time on their hands that they're happy poking at others who are actually out there trying to get things done.

Every organization I've ever been part of - religious, political, community, and professional, has had nasty politics going on. I think it's because people are just that - political, in the larger sense of the word. I've never seen it played out quite so publically as it is in the Moore County political parties. Perhaps that's transparency, but it has the effect of people who would normally want to be involved step back and say "I don't want to be associated with people who say things like that."

For what it's worth (and I can't believe I'm going to say this), I have to feel a little bit for Joe Boylan. He can no more control the actions of another individual than John Edwards (or any other politician I support) could control mine.

He did win the primary, accomplishing something no one thought could happen - the fall of Richard Morgan. And then the fun started. Boylan did win the election, quite handily, in fact. I've got to give him credit; he pounded the pavement and did a lot of his own canvassing. I disagree with him on just about every issue, but that is the way to win a race. His opponent, in this case is Manila "Bud" Shaver, who split the Republican vote, and apparently the MC Republican Party. The internecine warfare here is keeping that race going, with official grievances, etc. The Moore County Republicans don't realize that by playing out their problems in the newspaper, they are causing people to have the same reaction that many Democrats had when we were going through this kind of thing a few years ago. "stay out of politics in Moore County because it's ugly."

Matthew Moriarty is a good reporter, who covers just about everything, and does a fairly even handed job with it. He's a good guy, and I think we're lucky to have someone like him covering news in Moore County. I have no idea what his political leanings are, and that's evidence of his journalistic skill. He's got a good sense of humor, too. You can read his blog here.

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi

This has been a political conundrum to me

While I'm happy that it's all about the Repubs in MC, I still am split on who is right about this. Both Kennedy and his side kick Ralph Redmond are behind this, both are residents of Pinewild and both contributed to Boylan's campaign because he was the only candidate that promised he would stop Pinehurst from annexing Pinewild. (The other two candidates said that it would have to go through the political processes in Raleigh.) But then I wonder, if there were two Dem candidates and the one I backed did not win, but they won the primaries (think about the Lamont/Lieberman race) would I be as upset? What are the laws that address this situation? Who IS right?

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

I don't think there are laws, per se

just the plan of organization and by-laws of the Republican party. It really should be an internal matter and the nastiness that is played out in the Pilot is shameful, really. Except - it's the Republicans, and as long as they're fighting with each other, they leave us alone.

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi

The Moore County Banana Republicans

just won't let this go. As one of his parting shots, Richard Morgan submarined a bill through the last legislature making Moore its own independent judicial district-- NC's 35th. (They didn't like our Randolph County Republican Garland Yates, who wasn't partisan enough, evidently. Randolph County happily gave them up, by all accounts). They already have their own judges, so this was just a matter of funding a completely new DA and several new assistant DAs... ('only' a couple of hundred grand-- no need for Popish fiscal conservatism when rewarding the faithful). The new DA was supposed to be Warren McSweeney, a nice, sheeplike, 30-something guy; his nomination was sent to the Gov and everyone thought it was a done deal. But Monday he withdrew his name, to everyone's amazement. The bar's rumor mill says it was because Morgan was demanding that his first act be to prosecute Boylan and Kennedy for some unspecified election law crime. McSweeney wouldn't do it, so he bailed. Yesterday the Gov. appointed the woman who was the only other choice. We'll see if she sticks with the program.

Warren McSweeney

is a decent guy, a good citizen, and fine member of the community. Please don't tar him with the same brush as Morgan, Boylan, Kennedy, and Pope.

McSweeney has been ADA in Moore Co. for some time, and has always been willing to speak to community groups on legal issues. When asked questions he didn't immediately have answers for, he made it a point to get back to the facilitator of the group with the answer later in the same week so that the group would have the correct answer. He's a good man, even if he is a Republican. Leave him out of the Pope mess, please.

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi