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Rasmussen: Opposition to Hobby Lobby decision highlights problem with mandates

Following the Hobby Lobby Supreme Court decision, one of the key talking points that emerged from enraged opponents of the ruling was: "My boss shouldn't be involved in my health care decisions." California State Senate candidate Sandra Fluke says on her official website that such a perspective is "common sense."

July 26, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Williams: Do blacks need favors?

Earlier this month, the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act was celebrated. During the act's legislative debate, then-Sen. Hubert Humphrey, responding to predictions, promised, "I'll eat my hat if this leads to racial quotas." I don't know whether Humphrey got around to keeping his promise, but here's my question: Is it within the capacity of black Americans to make it in this society without the special favors variously called racial preferences, quotas, affirmative action and race-sensitive policies? What might a "yes" answer to that question assume and imply about blacks? Likewise, what would a "no ...

July 26, 2014 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Cohen: A fight for Israel’s existence

Israel fought its first war, in 1948, against five Arab nations - Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan - as well as the Palestinians. In the prediction of the fairly new CIA, the outcome was never in doubt: "Without substantial outside aid in terms of manpower and material, they [the Jews] will be able to hold out no longer than two years." It has now been 66 years, but I fear that sooner or later, the CIA's conclusion could turn out to be right.

July 24, 2014 | | Columnists


Johnson: Getting on the same page of the 2050 Plan

Last week I attended two informal meetings of citizens and two Chamber of Commerce moderated meetings on the 2050 Plan and a meeting on the Highway 278 Community Improvement District. I came away with an appreciation of just how similar is the end result most of us want for Newton County and yet how distant are the means that we would employ to accomplish that end.

July 22, 2014 | Philip Johnson | Columnists


Cavanaugh: Dream home to house from hell

I wrote this some time ago. With so many folks in the same boat as I was in those early days of my adulthood, I thought you might get a chuckle from my young eager mistakes:

July 19, 2014 | Pat Cavanaugh | Columnists


Cushman: Virtues require underlying framework

This summer has served as a reminder to me about the virtue of virtues, specifically hard work and perseverance. Last winter, our 12-year-old son, Robert, was accepted into an honors performance group as a string bass player, based on his teacher's recommendation and an MP3 submission of his playing. In May, he was sent four pieces of music to master by late June, when he was to perform them in New York.

July 17, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Williams: Spending and morality

During last year's budget negotiation meetings, President Barack Obama told House Speaker John Boehner, "We don't have a spending problem." When Boehner responded with "But, Mr. President, we have a very serious spending problem," Obama replied, "I'm getting tired of hearing you say that." In one sense, the president is right. What's being called a spending problem is really a symptom of an unappreciated deep-seated national moral rot. Let's examine it with a few questions.

July 17, 2014 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Yarbrough: The job of waxing poetic can be quite frenetic

"I have gotten bad news and am much the worse for it.

July 15, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Cohen: Conservatives will buy anything

They had a term for her, but I've forgotten it. It was a name applied to a person who could not say no to a door-to-door salesman. The one I remember from my brief career selling magazines was totally upfront about her intentions. "I'll buy whatever you're selling," she said. I sold her Esquire and two other subscriptions. Salesmen back then had a name for such people. Today, I would call them conservatives. They, too, will buy anything.

July 15, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Rasmussen: Political language, not Watergate, to blame for public distrust of government

In his weekly column for CNN.com, Julian Zelizer makes a reasonable case that "Distrustful Americans still live in age of Watergate." In his eyes, this helps explain why the president's health care law and other initiatives have encountered so much resistance.

July 12, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Cavanaugh: Adventures in Elizabeth City

One of the advantages of being an older baby boomer is that your mind can easily wander back to days of your youth and every detail of those experiences can be seen as clearly as if you were still that age.

July 12, 2014 | T. Pat Cavanaugh | Columnists


Cushman: President Obama should go down to the border

Based on this fiscal year's eight-and-a-half months of activity so far, the number of unaccompanied alien children from Honduras apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol will increase 22 times from what it was in 2009.

July 10, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Massie: What if terrorists used infectious diseases?

In a piece titled, "They're Not Telling Us The Truth," I wrote: "Clinton, Bush and Obama, et al, have positioned us in harm's way by providing an accommodating environment for these illegal disease carriers. It is not my contention that everyone who crosses the border illegally is diseased or a disease carrier. I am saying, the fact that we do not know which ones are and which ones are not puts us in peril...I confess that when I walk into an uptown restaurant and see illegals in the kitchen or busing tables, I am concerned." (mychal-massie.com ...

July 10, 2014 | Mychal Massie | Columnists


Yarbrough: When it comes to polls and pests, Junior E. Lee knows his business

With the July 22 runoff elections fast approaching, I called Junior E. Lee, general manager of the Yarbrough Worldwide Media and Pest Control Company, located in Greater Garfield, Georgia, to get his thoughts on the various races and to see who he thinks will make it to the finals of the November general election and who will be eliminated this round.

July 08, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Cohen: An offer they can't refuse

FADE IN: Michael Corleone's den.

July 08, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Illicit conspiracy

The trial of John Edwards - former everything, including senator, vice-presidential candidate, presidential candidate and Father of the Year - is getting underway in North Carolina.

April 28, 2012 | Ric Latarski Columnist | Columnists


Preparing for rain

Monday night, my husband came home around 8:30 p.m. and was surprised to find me painting my office. Early that morning, as I lay in bed, unable to sleep, I decided to paint my office. The deadline was driven by a Tuesday installation appointment for a TV. After all, why hang the TV on a wall with old paint, nail holes and patches of paint missing where the dry-erase squares had been removed?

April 28, 2012 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Morgan: Behind the scenes of the Baxter deal

Only six years ago, Shannon Davis was the petite, pretty and pert front desk manager at the Newton County Chamber of Commerce, a part-time employee. Today she's one of the local faces of the state and regional team that landed a $1 billion investment by Baxter International at Stanton Springs industrial park that will put 1,000-1,500 people to work by 2018.

April 26, 2012 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Perugino: Supreme Court deciding on president’s use of power

With justices questioning his aggressive assertion of federal power on both health care and immigration laws, President Obama faces the prospect of two major setbacks at the U.S. Supreme Court in the middle of his re-election campaign.

April 26, 2012 | William Perugino Columnist | Columnists


Travis: Students’ strange, funny answers to questions

I wrote one column about unexpected and funny answers students sometimes write on tests. But unexpected and funny answers from students can come in other forms. When you get a funny answer to a question and the whole class is paying attention, you don't want to laugh and hurt a student's feelings, but sometimes the comment is so startling that you just can't help but laugh.

Calling on a student to read a passage or a sentence in a grammar exercise can be tricky. Some students don't like to read aloud and some can't do ...

April 24, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


Yarbrough: Giving Gov. Deal good marks

Dear Governor, I know you have been waiting to hear how I think you are handling things these days, but I wanted to give you time to get the legislators out of town and to be sure all the silverware is accounted for. Plus, I have been busy trying to help your pal, Leroy Gingrich, understand he has blown his chances of becoming President of the United States and that he might want to go back to Washington and moonlight as the Pillsbury Doughboy.

I like your low-key style and the way you are willing to work with both parties ...

April 24, 2012 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Blakeslee: Starting the hunt

Glad to see you back again this week. Have you had a chance to gather your tools for your hunt? Did you get a chance to explore Ancestry.com? Did you go visit the Newton County Library's Heritage Room? The Library has genealogy volunteers just about everyday in the Heritage Room to help you. How about that steno book and loose leaf notebook?

April 21, 2012 | Ellen Blakeslee Columnist | Columnists


McCoy: Strolling on the toll walk

I hate toll roads. It's probably because I was born in Miami, and I remember my parents feeding the toll booths with nickels that I could have used to far better ends.

April 21, 2012 | David McCoy | Columnists


Carter: Doing your due diligence

In a recent Wisconsin speech, GOP Presidential candidate Rick Santorum stirred supporters with a tale of assault on American democracy and tradition. "I was just reading something last night, from the State of California…I think it's seven or eight of the California system of universities don't even teach an American history course. It's not even available to be taught," he said. "Just to tell you how bad it's gotten in this country, where we're trying to disconnect the American people from the roots of who we are, so they have an understanding of what ...

April 21, 2012 | Maurice Carter Columnist | Columnists


Morgan: Hats off to entrepreneurs

Call up the office of County Clerk Jackie Smith, and if she's not there to answer, you'll hear her cheery voicemail declaring, "It's a beautiful day in Newton County!"

Indeed, it is a beautiful day in Newton County since the announcement yesterday of a $1 billion investment by Baxter International in a plant at Stanton Springs that will employ 1,000 to 1,500 workers to make blood-related products. Newton County Chamber of Commerce President Hunter Hall calls the project a "game-changer" for this neck of the woods. Commission Chair Kathy Morgan takes sentimental pride in the ...

April 19, 2012 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Perugino: It’s still the spending

I know I've already used this famous slogan of Bill Clinton from his last presidential campaign a number of times, but holy cow Batman, we are drowning in endless preaching on increasing revenue (secret word for taxes) and totally ignoring spending.

The Buffett Rule - what a masterful misdirection play used to avert attention from the gargantuan spending and to invoke class warfare. Under the Buffett Rule, businesses and families earning $1 million will pay a minimum 30 percent effective tax rate. The president says those Americans aren't paying enough, and as proof he points to billionaire Warren Buffett ...

April 19, 2012 | William Perugino | Columnists


Travis: A special thank you

Recently my youngest granddaughter had surgery at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite. It was my first experience with a children's hospital, and it was an eye-opener. The staff and facility could not be more welcoming and child friendly.

The nurses wear brightly colored T-shirts to appear less threatening. The rooms have chairs which can be made into beds for parents, and mothers are allowed to sleep in the hospital beds with their children, even in pediatric intensive care.

April 17, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


Yarbrough: Shepherd Center rebuilds lives and uplifts spirits

Those of you who regularly check this space know this, but to the newcomers out there: I am a whiner.

Like Goldilocks, I whine when the porridge is too hot. I whine when the porridge is too cold. But unlike Goldilocks, I whine even when the glop is just right.

April 17, 2012 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Cushman: In life, conflicts are sometimes necessary

Driving my children to and from various events earlier this week, we had a discussion about what makes a good story. They are both working on writing a book (as am I - we'll see who finishes first).

Stories, I explained, are interesting because they have conflict. There are most often two forces that push against each other. In classic stories, it's good versus evil. Really interesting stories have subplots, which reflect conflicts within conflicts.

April 14, 2012 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Gahwiler: Students’ apathy towards learning

What's become of our society? Our youth? Our parenting? Children used to dream of being able to go to middle school instead of working in factories, let alone high school. Why has the parenting become so laissez-faire that our teens no longer wish to learn and become educated? Why has the "education" system lowered its standards simply to accommodate for the lacking of our generation? Why is our society sacrificing education and knowledge for the sake of schooling?

Our dropout rates are decreasing, but each teenage generation as a whole seems to care less about education than the previous ...

April 14, 2012 | Robert Gahwiler | Columnists


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