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Articles by Section - Columnists


Africa: A tragic continent

Here's how my Aug. 11, 2003, column began: "Anyone who believes President Bush's Africa initiative, including sending U.S. troops to Liberia, will amount to more than a hill of beans is whistling Dixie. Maybe it's overly pessimistic, but most of Africa is a continent without much hope for its people." More than a decade has passed since that assessment, and little has changed to suggest a more optimistic outlook. Now Ebola threatens the very existence of the West African nations Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. Moreover, the deadly disease is likely to spread to neighboring nations.

October 27, 2014 | Walter Williams | Columnists


The power of positive beliefs

My mother was diagnosed with uterine cancer in the mid-1970s, when I was in grammar school. Her goal, at that time, was to stay alive to see my older sister Kathy and me graduate from high school. She neither dwelled on the disease, nor on why she was stricken with it, but instead focused on getting rid of the cancer and living for her two daughters.

October 25, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich-Cushman | Columnists


Ben Bradlee was a leader and a friend

Ben Bradlee would not have liked me to say so, but he was the living refutation of the Declaration of Independence: All men are not created equal. Certainly, he was not. He was born rich and well-connected, a member of the WASP tribe that once ran much of America and nearly all of its prestigious institutions. He was compellingly handsome and so smart that no crossword puzzle could really challenge him. It's not that he didn't have a weakness. He did. He was a sucker for the underdog.

October 25, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Embarrassing economists

So as to give some perspective, I'm going to ask readers for their guesses about human behavior before explaining my embarrassment by some of my fellow economists.

October 25, 2014 | Walter E. Williams | Columnists


Gov. Deal pledges 'everything on the table' public education reform

Last week Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jason Carter shared via this column his vision for public education in Georgia.

October 25, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Americans love community, hate politics

To understand the lack of enthusiasm most Americans feel about the midterm elections, it's important to recognize a vital distinction between government and community.

October 25, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Cushman: Exercise, routine and life

While new and novel might be exciting, routine and habit can help create a structure and framework for success. From eating breakfast, brushing our teeth or exercising every day, much of our lives are driven by routine. This reliance on routine behavior can startle us when we are driving and find ourselves not at our planned destination, but at our routine destination.

October 18, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Cohen: A president lacking menace

Tell me something: What do you think would happen if the United States concludes that Iran has been cheating and delaying and is about to pop a fully functional nuclear weapons program? Would President Obama respond by joining Israel to bomb the Iranian nuclear facilities to smithereens - or would he stall and equivocate? My bet is the latter and so, just to double down, is what I bet the Iranians are betting. They have taken the measure of Obama. He lacks menace.

October 18, 2014 | Staff Report | Columnists


Williams: Officially killing Americans

The Food and Drug Administration can make two types of errors. It can approve a drug that has dangerous unanticipated side effects, or it can reject or delay approval of a drug that is safe and effective. Let's look at these errors, because to err on the side of under- or over-caution is costly.

October 18, 2014 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Rasmussen: Lottery lies fuel distrust of government

It's a little thing, but it bugs me a lot.

October 18, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Random thoughts on some random subjects

If I die anytime soon - and I have no plans to do so at the moment - please see that the first paragraph of my obituary reads, "He was past president of the University of Georgia National Alumni Association." You can save for later paragraphs the part about my being often mistaken for Brad Pitt and my uncanny ability to put commas where they don't belong.

October 11, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Get Out and Vote

Ever since the 1976 election, I've understood the importance of voter turnout. My father was running for United States Congress in rural Georgia, having lost in 1974. He realized in early 1976 that running as a republican in Georgia, while Jimmy Carter was topping the democratic ticket, was going to be a hard feat to pull off, but confident of his ability to work hard, he trudged forward.

October 11, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


From Annapolis with love

This past summer I travelled back home to attend the 50th year reunion of the class of 1964 of St Mary's High in Annapolis Maryland.

October 11, 2014 | T. Pat Cavanaugh | Columnists


Things will get worse before they get better

In 1913, an entrepreneur "said in many newspapers and over his signature that it would be possible to transmit the human voice across the Atlantic before many years." For that accurate assessment of reality, he was prosecuted for stock fraud. A U.S. District Attorney claimed that, "based on these absurd and deliberately misleading statements, the misguided public ... has been persuaded to buy stock in his company."

October 11, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


The culture of passing the buck

The director of the Secret Service, Julia Pierson, was questioned this past Tuesday by members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform regarding lapses in Secret Service Performance. The hearing focused primarily on an incident that took place on September 19. Omar J. Gonzalez, 42, allegedly jumped the White House fence, ran across the White House lawn, ran up a flight of stairs and through the North Portico door. He then allegedly entered the entrance hall, turned left and headed into the East Room, where he was tackled and subdued. A knife was allegedly found in his possession.

October 04, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Men do more around the house now

I have been musing lately about the different responsibilities that men assume or assist with in the running of a household. There is a large gap between men of my husband's age and men of my daughters' ages.

My husband assumes responsibility for mowing the lawn, at least the middle of the lawn or what can be reached by a riding lawn mower. But most other yard chores belong to me. I prune, weed and water. He does, however, maintain a vegetable garden and is justifiably proud of its produce. My husband is in charge of the car and ...

April 03, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


That's a wrap: Session is out for the year

Last week saw the conclusion of the 2012 legislative session. The House finished voting on most of the remaining Senate bills, and then worked through the many situations where differing versions of bills had passed in the House versus the Senate. These are resolved by either agreeing with the other chamber's version of the bill, or by standing firm and appointing legislators to what is called a "conference committee." The conference committees try to reach a compromise version of a bill, which must then be approved by both chambers. However such differences are resolved, the final few days of ...

March 31, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Exploring the deep blue

James Cameron - filmmaker and Hollywood superstar - just took a trip to the bottom of the ocean.

March 31, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


America through foreign eyes

I've been in Europe for going on three weeks now, and I'm ready to come home. I miss my family, my bed, my friends and my guitars. I miss big steaks, cold sodas, twisted Southern English and rock and roll. I even miss our stupid American electoral circus, the lame tabloid-like coverage of our party-hardy political parties and the inert populace that thinks "insightful news analysis" is a reporter droning on about which politician said which "bad word" in which public forum. I miss all of this - warts and all - and I want it back. Europe is lovely ...

March 31, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Whatever happens next, the health care law is doomed

Media coverage now implies that the U.S. Supreme Court will determine the fate of President Obama's health care law. But nothing the court decides will keep the law alive for more than a brief period of time.

There are three ways the health care law could meet its end. The first, obviously, is the Supreme Court could declare some or all of it unconstitutional in June.

March 31, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Negative campaigning

It seems the Republican presidential primary is wending to a close with the stars aligning behind the ultimate candidacy of Mitt Romney to take on President Obama in the general election. Don't you think it's time for a nice, deep breath? All together, now: Inhale the pure, fresh air of these cool mornings and exhale all the polluted air filled for these many months with bitterness, rancor, ugliness, pettiness and deadly dares more befitting a prison yard brawl than a contest leading to the door of the White House.

Arizona Sen. John McCain, a veteran of presidential campaigning ...

March 29, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Latarski: All the pollen isn't such a bad thing

Spring is now officially upon us, although the weather we have had lately makes it feel like spring came and went around 2:47 a.m. Tuesday morning, and we headed straight into summer.

Normally we accept this with good grace because we know that our Northern friends are still digging out of snow, but that has not been the case this year.

March 24, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


McCoy: Breaking the sound barrier

How many of you grew up reading about a superhero who had amazing powers and who flew around town fighting crime while looking snazzy in a form-fitting costume? Come on; you know you read about Superman or Wonder Woman or other comic book heroes, and you wanted to be just like them. You wanted superpowers, and if you had any fashion sense, you wanted a snazzy cape with your initials on the back. Maybe you haven't given up hope. Maybe you still want superpowers, even if you're willing to compromise on the costume. I know which superpower I ...

March 24, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Burgess: Social Circle's best kept secret - Fire explorers and fire volunteers

Wanting to learn about our Fire Explorers and fire volunteers in Social Circle, I met two young ladies at the fire station who made me realize that there's a lot about firefighting that most folks, especially me, don't know. Shannon Patterson and Ashley Yantis are both experienced firefighters and Emergency Medical Technicians. Both are enthusiastic and totally committed to their work in insuring the safety of our citizens. Patterson is tall and pretty. Yantis is short (they call her "half-pint") and cute.

Unlike most jurisdictions, Public Safety Officers in Social Circle are cross trained as firemen and as ...

March 24, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Apted: Are you a facebragger or facedowner?

Are you a "Facebragger?" Urban Dictionary.com defines Facebragging as "the act of using a social networking site in order to show off or impress others with material items and/or fun activities and may include status updates, comments, or most often, pictures."

The opposite is referred to as being a "Facedowner"- someone who only posts the most dismal and depressing updates, presumably to garner sympathy from their friends.

March 24, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Gallimaufries to green grass

If you read last Sunday's Covington News, you may have seen a diatribe about this paper in the form of a letter to the editor from a man named Felton Hudson of Stone Mountain. In it, he also took a harsh swipe at my personal opinion columns, calling them "pedantic gallimaufries." More on that in a minute.

March 23, 2012 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Long live my crazy cat

I have a cat. His name is Earnest. He was a gift from a student in a senior English class spring semester of the last year I taught. The class voted to call him Shakespeare. But I declined. I couldn't see myself opening my back door and yelling Shakespeare into the neighborhood. So we settled on Earnest because as a class we were reading "The Importance of Being Earnest" when he came into my life.

March 20, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


The role Twinkies play in law

"Members of the Legislature, my name is Figby and I have been asked by House Speaker Dennis Ralston - he is the gentleman over in the corner eating the Twinkie - along with Senators Tommie Williams and Chip Rogers to discuss some potential campaign issues this fall. They are, of course, your leaders and have helped make the General Assembly what it is today.

March 20, 2012 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Great American Cleanup coming soon

The local community will team up once again Saturday to help Covington stay beautiful through The Great American Cleanup.

March 20, 2012 | Nicole Goetz | Columnists


Briggs: Life's lessons

I used to think people who dressed their dogs up in silly outfits or put bows in their hair needed professional counseling. That was back during my judgmental days when I thought my opinions mattered and always made it a point to make sure everyone around me knew what they were.

March 18, 2012 | Josh Briggs | Columnists


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