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Articles by Section - Columnists


An exhausting retirement

I have a friend who recently retired.

September 20, 2014 | Paula Travis | Columnists


The tech-inspired future of education

In 21st-century America, hope and change comes from tech-inspired entrepreneurs.

September 20, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Kissinger’s support for Israel runs deep

At the age of 91, Henry Kissinger has published yet another book - his 17th in 60 years, according to his biographer Walter Isaacson. In that sense, "World Order" is something of a miracle, but it is also a swell read. So, I initially thought, was a review of it in The New York Times by John Micklethwait, the editor-in-chief of the admirable Economist magazine - and I praised it to him in an email. A bit later, I did a double-take. I still like the book, but Micklethwait's review is a different matter.

September 16, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Trying to find the positives in this world can be a negative

The Woman Who Shares My Name instructed me that this week's column was to be about positive things. She says she is tired of bad news and thought you felt the same way. "Surely, you can find some positive things to write about," she said, "and temporarily take people's minds off all the terrible things going on in the world. I think your readers would appreciate that."

September 16, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Favors and Loot for Sale

At a July fundraising event in Chicago, Mrs. Michelle Obama remarked, "So, yeah, there's too much money in politics. There's (sic) special interests that have too much influence." Sen. John McCain has been complaining for years that "there is too much money washing around political campaigns today." According to a 2012 Reuters poll, "Seventy-five percent of Americans feel there is too much money in politics." Let's think about money in politics, but first a few facts.

September 13, 2014 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Health Care Law is Obama’s Gift to GOP for 2016

President Obama's health care law is the gift that keeps on giving to the GOP.

September 13, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


So long ago, and yet so near

According to a Gallup Poll released this week, "Americans' trust in the federal government to handle international problems has fallen to a record-low 43 percent, ... Separately, 40 percent of Americans say they have a 'great deal' or 'fair amount' of trust in the federal government to handle domestic problems, also the lowest Gallup has measured to date." (Poll conducted September 4-7, 2014, with 1,017 adults, 95 percent confidence level, +/- 4 points).

September 11, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Blacks should be angry with themselves

What is it that makes so many blacks so angry? What is it that makes so many of them blame the realities of life that beset everyone, e.g., debt, disappointment, etc., a result of their being black?

September 11, 2014 | Mychal Massie | Columnists


Dalton State College a major player in area’s economic rebound

Remember the story of "The Little Engine That Could?" That could very well describe the city of Dalton, a town of some 34,000 nestled in the corner of Northwest Georgia, not far from the Tennessee line.

September 10, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Blind to the world’s broken windows

"All politics is local," the late Speaker of the House Tip O' Neill famously said. How right he was. The world today is suffering from the failure of President Obama to apply a school of law enforcement that happened to originate in O'Neill's hometown, Boston, and goes by the moniker "broken windows." The problem, simply stated, is that Obama was deaf to the sound of tinkling glass.

September 10, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Robin Hood and the Digital Revolution

The lovable legend of Robin Hood with his band of Merry Men making life difficult for the Sheriff of Nottingham offers a great way to understand the politics of 21st century America.

September 06, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Applying smart power vs. don’t do stupid stuff

What a difference a year makes. Last September, the Obama administration and the media were cheering happenstance as victory. A quick review of last year's events: the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government on civilians, tough talk by President Barack Obama, an administration push for a congressional vote for use of force, Secretary of State John Kerry's off-the-cuff remark regarding Syria giving up chemical weapons, Russian President Vladimir Putin leveraging the remark into action, the Obama administration claiming a great solution.

September 04, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Vox explanation highlights gap between political world and everybody else

A recent column on Vox.com may have inadvertently highlighted the gap between the nation's political elites and the rest of the nation. Vox is an "explanatory journalism" site founded by former Washington Post columnist and blogger Ezra Klein.

September 04, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Pumpkins growing weary

Can it be? Is it September already? One of my favorite tunes, "September Song," was written by Kurt Weill and Maxwell Anderson for a Broadway musical in 1938 called "Knickerbocker Holiday. The lyrics could apply today to the current political season in Georgia - "For it's a long, long time from May to December, but the days grow short when you reach September."

September 02, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Try realism in the Middle East

America rarely does time capsules anymore, but the ones it does should include videos from February 2011 of American TV reporters exulting in the triumph of the Arab Spring. "This is the sound of a people rising," ABC's Terry Moran told us from Cairo. For Egyptians, it was a day "when a people rose and made themselves a new country, a new world, a new life."

September 02, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


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Archive By Section - 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


Carter: Changing the blame game

The 1970s were described famously by novelist Tom Wolfe as the "Me Decade" in a 1976 article in New York Magazine.

If I were asked to pin a label on the period we live in today, I would call this the "Who? Me!?" decade.

April 14, 2012 | Maurice Carter | Columnists


Obama and Romney at the starting gate

Any doubt that Mitt Romney would win the Republican presidential nomination vanished when Rick Santorum left the race. It also marked the end of Romney's time as the defining figure in the overall contest for the White House.

April 14, 2012 | By Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Waiting for the perfect robot

On a warm day, back in the dark ages when Richard Milhous Nixon was the Emperor of DC and double-knit polyester was the darling of the fashion industry, I was scouring my school's library for something good to read. I had already polished off Thomas Edison's biography, every "Three Investigators" detective story I could find, and a piece about the father of the telegraph: Samuel F.B. Morse. And then I found it - a big, hardcover book on robots. Robots!

April 14, 2012 | David McCoy | Columnists


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