What are the scariest words in the English language? For me, they’re, “Here’s a new one from the Stones.” For some wags, they are: “I’m from the government and I’m here to help.” Chortle, chortle. For Sen. Tom Apodaca, the most frightening phrase is “I’m Jim Goodmon. I work at Capitol Broadcasting. I’m a member of the Dix Visionaries.” Let us be fair to the apprehensive Apodaca, can any of us really imagine hearing that in a brightly lit, crowded room in the middle of a sunny day? I mean! If that’s not some scary stuff, I don’t know what is.
At a hearing of the Senate Appropriations committee, the businessman protested a plan to void the state’s lease of the Dorothea Dix property to the city of Raleigh. Goodmon pointed out what should be perfectly obvious, that any entity that signs a lease in good faith and three months later tries to get out of it will not be perceived as a good partner. Even I know that and I’m not anyone’s idea of a businessperson. (Exhibit A: I’m writing this for free in my basement.) My mother always told me your word is your bond and a verbal contract is as good as a written one IF YOU’RE AN HONEST PERSON. The members of the committee who voted to repeal the lease clearly never met my mom or they’d consider a written agreement entered into by the duly elected governor of the great state of North Carolina and approved by the variously appointed and elected members of the Council of State inviolate. I think they must know they’re not acting right.
That brings us to the anxious Apodaca. He said, “I feel like we’ve been somewhat intimidated by the press here today with the comments made by Capitol Broadcasting. I will not be threatened at the General Assembly. That is wrong.” and “I felt threatened by you, sir, when you said your ownership of Capitol Broadcasting.” Now, Goodmon didn’t ‘said his ownership’ even though it’s the truth, he said he worked there. Apodaca, though frightened, was quick on his feet (or tuchis, really) and got in a dig at that hoary old bogeyman, the press. (You forgot “lamestream media,” Senator, 10 points off Slytherin!) When Goodmon attempted to reply, the scared senator cut him off. Goodmon wanted to speak with Apodaca at the end of the hearing, but terrified Tom left forthwith.
I’m no therapist and I don’t play one on TV, but I think the rattled Republican was projecting his own misgivings onto Mr. Goodmon. Apodaca knows that a state senator could be considered a role model – what? it’s theoretically possible! – and, like his colleagues on the committee, he’s not living up to his word or his station in this matter. My mother would never sanction tearing up a contract. No one’s mother could be proud of this move. If you’re going to behave dishonorably, Senator, screw your courage to the sticking-place and have at it. To show an unfelt sorrow is an office which the false man does easy.