Like Joe McCarthy in the 1950s, whose paranoia saw a Communist under every American’s bed, here in Asheville we have our own demagogue, Carl Mumpower, who gets a lot of mileage from shining his light of truth and justice on all the socialists scuttling in the dark corners of our City Council chambers. His allusions that certain members of our Council have socialist leanings is akin to describing his political philosophy as having fascist leanings. Of more concern to me is his faith in the “free market”—including the sacrosanctity of private property—as the overarching panacea to many of our society’s maladies, [and] his naive and misguided faith in libertarian principles, which sadly have proven to be just an apology for corporate fascism. Do we really want to perpetuate more of the same divisiveness, fearmongering and arrogance that has characterized the Republican conservative leadership in our country for way too many years by supporting Carl Mumpower for higher office?
Note the way Carl Mumpower votes as Council member, particularly on development issues. Do his loyalties lie with those of us who want to preserve Asheville’s uniqueness, human scale of livability and strong sense of community—or do his loyalties lie with those moneyed and hungry men who would despoil our attractive city by erecting vertical concrete coffins; who would make it more and more unlivable by practicing a “smart growth” philosophy resulting in both congestion and sprawl; and who would erode our sense of community by building only for the part-time, out-of-town rich who don’t live here long enough to have a clue. Sometimes a hot-air balloon needs a prick.
— Gene Zimbalkin