BLS: Awesome Advice for Margaret Spellings

Margaret Spellings
BobLee
June02/ 2016

Pretty Spellings

If new UNC System President Margaret Spellings a/k/a “that Bush woman” asked me for advice (not as far-fetched a frightening possibility as some might wish), here is what I would tell her:

Relocate (1) The UNC System Headquarters and (2) The President’s Residence OUT OF CHAPEL HILL Immediately! 

Move both physically OUT OF CHAPEL HILL.

This Column was originally posted in JUNE 2016….

The logistics of doing so are incredibly easy.  As I will outline below.

WHOA… Q:  BobLee, where did you find such an attractive picture of Margaret Spellings?.   …. A: NOT in the files of The N&O or WRAL that’s for sure.  They have strict orders to never run “attractive pictures” of anyone they viscerally despise which, alas, includes a LOT of people these days including me.

By doing so, President Spellings, and The UNC Board of Governors would gain much needed credibility (1) across the 17-member UNC System and (2) among the general population from Murphy To Manteo.

The negatives for doing so?  There ARE no negatives to doing so.

BUT BobLee won’t doing so really “piss off” The UNC-CH crowd?

Sure.  So?

There is an hydrological term called super saturation.  An object – say a sponge – can only absorb so much liquid.  Once that absorption point is reached it simply can’t absorb any more.  The earth after multiple days of hard rain reaches “super saturatioHate Spellingsn”.

The UNC-CH crowd has been effectively “super saturated” to despise / loath Margaret Spellings from well before she ever took office this past March.  Very few collective bodies can manifest goggle-eyed “loathing” with the dynamic energy of that portion of the terminally constipated UNC-CH crowd.

It does not matter what President Spellings does or does not do.  The UNC-CH / Chapel Hill crowd is going to despise / loath her To The Max.

The only superficial objection to physically relocating UNC’s General Administrative HQ out of Chapel Hill is thereby eliminated.   The AYES have it.

The UNC General Admin HQ has always been located in Chapel Hill since “kindly old Bill Friday” created the august umbrella body in its current form over 45 years ago.   BECAUSE The Board of Governors, which oversees “The System” had, until about five years ago, always been totally dominated by UNC-Chapel Hill alumni /partisans.

Appointed by the North Carolina General Assembly (NCGA) to provide administrative oversight to the 17-member system, Board of Governors (BOG) members have always reflected the political leanings of the reigning majority of the General Assembly.  For 40 years a Democratic legislature appointed it’s political cronies to The BOG.  A very high % of whom had very strong emotional ties to the Chapel Hill institution….. i.e. we’re talking hard-core Dan Kane-hating, Carolina Way Tru-believers.

Until about five years ago The UNC BOG was “UNC-CH and the 16 Whozits”.  At one point the 32-member BOG had as many as 25 UNC-CH partisans.   YIKES!   Many of the 17-member campuses have NEVER had a single advocate on The BOG.   The HBCUs had “token representation” as was always the case under Democratic domination.  The 6-8 larger campuses of the 17 still do dominate with their partisans.

I have another awesome plan for diminishing that unbalanced representation, but one Awesome Plan at a time….

Now – 2016 – following several appointment rotations, UNC-CH no longer dominates The BOG with a Carolina Blue iron fist.   There are still a number of UNC-CH advocates but NOT the super-majority as was the case for 40 years.

OK, enough about the incestuous history of The UNC System.   Lets move on to relocating the General Administrative HQ…. OUT OF CHAPEL HILL.

UNC AdminThe UNC System HQ is located on Raleigh Road (Hwy 54) between Glen Lenox and The Institute of Government.   Driving into Chapel Hill on Hwy 54, you can’t miss it “on the Left” (a Freudian slip?)   While “it” may be an impressive edifice at first glance; the building is badly in need of major renovation both structurally and functionally.   Asbestos !  Yikes!  In my plan, the building and mega-valuable land is sold off to a private developer for whatever purpose.   More Roger Perry over-priced condos or trendy eateries?  Hell, sell it to The Wolfpack Club to set up a 24/7 surveillance post.

Yes, I know the Prez’ office and many other admin functions are now in a nearby building within The Friday Center but “moving out of Chapel Hill” is symbolic.

The UNC President’s official manse is located on West Franklin Street adjacent to the UNC-CH campus.  A stately Georgian mansion several blocks from The Morehead Planetarium.   The UNC Chancellor, on the other hand, is provided housing further off-campus in the woods above Finley Golf Course.   In my plan…. The Chancellor will move into the Georgian Mansion vacated by The President and the current Chancellor housing sold off.

A Chancellor should be near his/her campus.  A System President needs to be dis-connected from any one campus.  A permanent manse suitable for a System President’s personal and professional responsibilities can be found in any number of “toney enclaves” surrounding RTP.  Hey, maybe out at The (Board of) Governors’ Club?

In The UNC System all 17 members are theoretically equal; or, at least NOT ONE dominant member and 16 others literally fighting for leftover table scraps as has been the case until 5-6 years ago.

Because the BOG is a state government-related body it should be in reasonable proximity to the NC General Assembly negating moving its HQ to any far-flung area of the state.   Either Downtown Raleigh or Research Triangle Park will suffice.  There are advantages to either scenario.

“What about NC State’s Centennial Campus?” say NC State partisans.  Nope.  That recreates another proximal attachment to one institution to be avoided.

Available space could be purchased or leased and quickly upfitted “in/around RTP”.   “It” does not have to be a dramatic free-standing edifice…. in fact, there is a practical school of thought that the expense of creating such is imprudent.   Modern first-class office space with all the accoutrements necessary IS available.

The sell-off of the current facility will more than cover all relocation expenses with $$$$$ to spare.

All current UNC System staff could be retained as commuting within The Triangle is no hardship.  Any current staff reluctant to do so can resign with their likely superfluous positions eliminated.   A secondary advantage of the relocation.

If you are not already enthusiastically “on-board” this plan…. Just Wait – There’s More.

UNC ProtestorsSurely you have noticed – because Triangle-area media also loath / despise Margaret Spellings & The BOG.  Both are seen as eeeeevil Republicans blah blah blah.   The BOG has been under siege for many months by a small insignificant gang of obscene hooligans epitomizing that aforementioned “we just hate’em because….” mind-set.

While this small insignificant gang of obscene hooligans is in reality truly irrelevant they have been glorified and magnified by an in-cahoots NCGA / BOG-hating media led by McClatchy’s News & Observer and Jim Goodmon’s WRAL – into “sympathetic rebels with an ill-defined cause”.  PUH-leeeze!

Their “cause” ?? is lost amid their screaming obscenities, misspelled signage and deep-seated animosity towards any form of poAltha Craveylite society.   It’s the 2016 version of the same unwashed anarchists that have festered around Chapel Hill / Carrboro since the 70s some still wearing the same tie-dyed tees and chanting the same ol’ mantras over five decades.  These days they are led by a rather scary messianic crone named Altha Cravey.

Because the current UNC System HQ is (1) within easy walking distance from their Chapelboro hovels and communes, and (2) they have nothing else to do, and (3) they get to be media stars…. they congregate each month at BOG Meetings to “do what they do”.

There are only several dozen of’em but they do yell loud and draw media attention in the same way that “Bully” Barber’s Monday mini-mobs” do on Jones Street.  From exactly the same media for exactly the same reason.  Duh!

Moving the UNC HQ 10-15 miles away in RTP will cut the several dozen to ever how many angry snowflakes can fit in a Prius.

This last “reason to relocate” is simply a bonus.

###

So President Spellings. That is BobLee’s Awesome Advice.  Oh, and I have already discussed all this with a number of your BOG members.  THEY LOVE IT!

Hang in there “Bush Woman”.

NOTE:  If you take away nothing else from this…. please remember that Spellings DOES “have an “s” on the end.

###

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PTH
PTH
4 years ago

I would place an emphasis on several issues, of a similar nature to the location of the NC Public University System office. I believe it has been discussed on this blog as well as the NC State blogs and others, that a more diverse BOG with regards to representation more likely to give all system members a voice is desperately needed. I also believe a name change is in order. It should not be the UNC system, it should be a generic name, such as North Carolina Public University System. I would, however, settle for The NC State University System,… Read more »

blue ghost
blue ghost
4 years ago
Reply to  PTH

As stated in a previous post, I have asked Ms. Spellings on more than one occasion to move the physical location of the UNC system headquarters. But I never thought about this poster’s suggestion of also changing the name of the organization. While “The NC State University System” or “The ECU System” would never fly, I can see the rational for something like “The North Carolina Public University System.” I already can hear the screams from the folks in baby blue, but both the location change and a name change would bring a lot of clarity to what we actually… Read more »

GWC
GWC
4 years ago

This is a particularly good time to actually consider the relocation of the UNC System HQ to the Research Triangle Park because the Park is on the verge of major changes that might make it an ideal location for the System outside of Chapel Hill . The Park is adding residential , commercial , dining , hotels and other general amenities that might be a good fit for UNC as a lead tenant or anchor HQ . Smedes York (degrees from both NC State and UNC-CH ) is current Chair of the RTP Foundation and any serious plans along these… Read more »

oldwuf vet
oldwuf vet
4 years ago

Excellent idea. A strong symbolic move. Blue Ghost’s comments were very helpful. Beck’s patronizing comments about other system schools were typical and expected. His smack at ECU got my attention, “nursing school”. Uh, they also have a medical and dental school; both resisted strongly by the UNCCH crowd. Sorely needed because UNC wasn’t graduating enough Doc’s to meet the needs of non-urban(affluent) NC communities. ECU immediately established dental clinics staffed with faculty and students in severely underserved areas of NC(ours was one) to provide desperately needed dental care. Along with producing needed family and general Practitioners it appears that ECU… Read more »

Doug
Doug
4 years ago

Learning experience on the progressive version of tolerance. Everyone should be tolerant as long as it agrees with a certain worldview but intolerant if it doesn’t. Thanks got it now.

Bob Hooks
Bob Hooks
4 years ago

You hit pay dirt on this one. I think I need to reread most of this to understand everything in the comments. But did you get call a “Liberal UNC homer” ? My head exploded and I will read slower for better comprehension. You proposition is well founded and I think it should be done.

58 Wolf Kennel
58 Wolf Kennel
4 years ago

BL, you are putting out too many good columns to respond to each one individually. The President residence, BOG, and General Administration real estate discussion move is an excellent piece, and absolutely worthy of general consideration plus specific thought by President Spellings (and her new advisor). You also seem to have picked up a new anonymous fan who also has some interesting points. Yesterday, I had a good talk down at the Legislature with one of your BOG sources and a good mutual friend. I’ve spent two days at the Legislature with our Alumni Council colored basketball opposing the “tuition”… Read more »

R Beck
R Beck
4 years ago
Reply to  BobLee

NC State is a great university. Textiles, veterinary medicine, engineering – all NC State strong points. ECU has a fantastic nursing school. What makes the UNC system so great is that each campus caters to different student demographics, different fields of study, different career goals, etc. UNC is of course the birthplace of the system and the nation’s oldest public university and as such is held, not just by “liberals” and former students but by a large portion of the state’s and in fact the country’s citizens, as the beacon and exemplar of what higher education unfettered by the bonds… Read more »

R Beck
R Beck
4 years ago
Reply to  BobLee

Well, if they can’t stand the heat, I suppose they could get out of Chapel Hill. I’m of the opinion that save the few occasions on which they have to face the opposition, they actually love being there and would hate to relocate. Mrs. Spellings, were she to dwell there long enough, might actually attain the kind of enlightenment we hope our students do. After all, she only has a BA, so there is plenty of room for her to expand her own educational horizons, and at what better place than one of the highest ranked public universities in the… Read more »

R Beck
R Beck
4 years ago
Reply to  BobLee

Was also wondering why your little on-site bio claimed you were “non-partisan”. Did someone who doesn’t know you write it?

R Beck
R Beck
4 years ago
Reply to  BobLee

I think you might need to take a good listen outside the echo chamber. It’s funny how much one can learn from reading their own words as if they were written by someone else. I’m sure you think you’re attacking everyone equally regardless of political persuasion or connection, but a casual observer would find much to disagree with there. You have a real hard-on for UNC and no particular love for “libruls”. Admittedly I haven’t read much of your wit and wisdom, so maybe you’ve attacked John Locke, Art Pope, Phil Berger, Civitas and NC State equally. If so, please… Read more »

blue ghost
blue ghost
4 years ago
Reply to  R Beck

Now that was quite a rambling diatribe. You are a shining example… some might say a poster boy, of someone who has completely bought into the Carolina Way doctrine of, “you’re OK, but we’re better than you are.” Your feeble efforts to seem complimentary to NCSU and other UNC system components quickly gives way to the revelation of who you are and your liberal way of thinking. . Yes, UNC-Chapel Hill is the oldest public university in the US, a fact that we constantly are reminded of by UNC-CH sycophants such as you. But that does not make nor has… Read more »

R BECK
R BECK
4 years ago
Reply to  blue ghost

Dang BobLee, what kind of crowd you hanging with these days? I thought you used to be a pretty big poster boy for UNC yourself? I must be thinking of another BobLee, one with a little more Swagger.

RowdyBlueTarHeeler
RowdyBlueTarHeeler
4 years ago

GENIUS!

REM
REM
4 years ago

Why not use the 40k+ sqft building in Raleigh called the Department of Public Instruction???? Overhead, $0, office space,$0, Parking $0, accessable to members and Public $000, downside: another government organization in Raleigh???

blue ghost
blue ghost
4 years ago

Last December I wrote the second of three letters to Ms.Spellings: Dear Ms. Spellings: On October 26, I wrote to you concerning some of the challenges I thought you would have when you take over as president of the University of North Carolina system. As I mentioned in my previous letter, the university system in North Carolina is a political football. All members of the board of governors are elected by the most political body in the state, the general assembly. While many board members are well qualified for the job, that’s not always the case. Too many members are… Read more »

blue ghost
blue ghost
4 years ago

On February 4, before Ms. Spellings even took office, I wrote the following letter to her. I have received no reply. Dear Ms. Spellings: In my letter dated December 15, 2015, I mentioned that many in the general public often confuse the University of North Carolina and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. And many who know better do the same thing. When people refer to the university at Chapel Hill, almost invariably they just say the University of North Carolina. One thing that helps perpetuate the misuse of the university name is the fact that the UNC… Read more »

Eric
Eric
4 years ago

This is long overdue. The UNC administration is totally AWOL over there in Chapel Hill. No wonder the legislature has no idea what they are doing. The main problem that needs to be fixed, however, is reforming the BOG. It is bloated with clueless donors to the GOP who have no idea what they are doing or how to fix the corrupt and radically leftwing UNC system. The legislature needs to remove them and start over with a smarter bunch of BOG appointees.

blue ghost
blue ghost
4 years ago
Reply to  Eric

It would be a big help if legislators would appoint BOG members on the basis of qualifications rather than friendship and donations to their campaigns, a method that Republicans quickly learned from their Democrat predecessors.

Doug
Doug
4 years ago

There’s another hydrological term called hydrophobic which is the opposite of super saturation (hydrophilic) Hydrophobic soils refuse to absorb water. It beads off, like water slides off a duck’s back. So many hydrophobic minds controlled the UNC BOG culture for years that new or innovative ideas could not be absorbed by the good ole boy network. Any “new” ideas had only to pass ” The Carolina Way” Kool Aid test.

I like your idea. Anywhere outside the People’s Republic of Orange is OK by me.

ncsu1987
ncsu1987
4 years ago

Under ordinary circumstances I would declare that this idea has so much merit that its chances of implementation are almost nonexistent. This idea, however, is so damned good, I’d love to see this develop some legs.

And yes, “messianic crone” made me choke on my coffee. At least i didn’t ruin the keyboard this time.

Oh, and can’t wait for that second awesome plan…

BC.in.PV
BC.in.PV
4 years ago

I live in Florida and don’t have a dog in that UNC System fight. But your suggestion makes so much sense, where do I sign a petition or hold a votive candle. Good Luck with this one!

Frank.Linstreet
Frank.Linstreet
4 years ago

STOP! No More Calls. We have our winner….

a rather scary messianic crone named Altha Cravey. Imagine if the infamous Gene Nichol transgenderized into identifying as a “she-male”.

Edward-In-GSBO
Edward-In-GSBO
4 years ago

You answered your own question. Why hasn’t The UNC System HQ been moved out of Chapel Hill? Because UNC-CH FatCats and their Democratic cronies in past NCGAs would never allow such a sensible and obvious action. ….

Brent Milgrom
Brent Milgrom
4 years ago

Bob Lee, Good idea IMHO, but when you raise this idea please don’t use the American Flag at Kenan ! You might, however want to be the first to announce our first book on the history of Kenan Stadium sponsored by the old UNC football players that is coming out about the same time as we beat those Dawgs from Georgia.

unctarheel1984
unctarheel1984
4 years ago

Your proposal is both reasonable and rational which begs the questions, “Who are you and what have you done with BobLeeSwagger?”

UNCFacultyGuy
UNCFacultyGuy
4 years ago

DAMN. I was on the UNCCH faculty for 30 years and always maintained there should be a physical separation of the UNC System Admin from any campus. I got nowhere, obviously. Now I retire and an Internet Legend picks up the campaign. Good Luck…. it is a VERY SOUND IDEA!

DrVinnyboombatz
DrVinnyboombatz
4 years ago
Reply to  BobLee

All I can say to this is to agree that it’s a damn great idea that should have already happened years ago.

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