The governor of North Carolina has chosen as the state’s new poet laureate, Valerie Macon, who works as a disability examiner for the state Disability Determination Service, which makes disability determinations at the initial and reconsideration levels for the Social Security Administration. The pick is controversial since Ms. Macon’s oeuvre consists only of two self-published poetry collections and because the governor did not consult with the NC Arts Council which has overseen poet laureate picks in the past.
Update: This is so peripherally related to Social Security but so irresistible. Here's the latest:"One of my objectives is to open up the availability of all appointments to people that typically aren't inside the organized groups," [NC governor] McCrory said. "We've got to open up opportunities for people that aren't always a part of the standard or even elite groups that have been in place for a long time. And it's good to welcome new voices and new ideas." ...
He also said he was unaware of the N.C. Arts Council protocol followed by previous governors in selecting a poet laureate.
"We were not aware of the traditional process that was in place, it wasn't written down anywhere on the walls," McCrory said, surprising reporters who told him it was online last week.
"Well, we must have missed that web site, sorry," he said. "Listen, I'm reviewing the entire process."