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Articles by Section - Columnists


Depressed journalists are depressing nation

I am far more pessimistic about our political system than most Americans. At the same time, I am very optimistic about the future of our nation. That may seem like an odd combination to some, but I am optimistic because I recognize that Washington, D.C., does not lead the nation.

April 26, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Consciously sidelining ourselves

Though Wal-Mart remains fixed in the American conscience as Sam Walton's business, it is less and less that. Walton was folksy and relatable to the Americans who shopped at Wal-Mart. Everyone could imagine Sam Walton shopping there, too. But over the years, Wal-Mart's management has passed out of the direct hands of Walton's family.

April 26, 2015 | Eric Erickson | Columnists


First session finishes with a flourish

The last day of my first session was thrilling and exhausting. I worked from 7 in the morning to midnight to get "Kelsey's Law" over the finish line. Only 13 minutes remained before the official "Sine Die" when all work must cease until next year. But I am incredibly grateful that my work, and the work of Newton Representatives Pam Dickerson and Doug Holt before me, finally came to fruition after four long years. More importantly, I am humbled to be just a small part of courageous Kelsey's fight to protect fellow teenage girls.

April 12, 2015 | Dave Belton | Columnists


Columnist no ‘Playtoe,’ but irked by lack of respect

Fortune Magazine has announced its list of the World's Greatest Leaders for 2015 and would you believe that I got snubbed again this year?

April 12, 2015 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Gay rights movement is totalitarian

The gay rights movement has tended to be a well-choreographed stage production over the last number of decades. Over time, behind the scenes, they pushed hard for gay characters in film and television. They pushed gay actors out of the closet and encouraged celebrations of diversity.

April 12, 2015 | Erick Erickson | Columnists


Technology will trump ‘Bootleggers’ mentality

In recent weeks, I've written about how the "Bootleggers and Baptists" dynamic corrupts regulatory politics. Bruce Yandle developed this concept decades ago. He observed that Prohibition became reality because Baptists wanted people to stop drinking while the ban on legal alcohol put money in the Bootlegger's pockets. The do-gooders succeeded only because the money-grubbers joined their effort.

April 12, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Living through the times

It seems every day now some famous personality or former friend has passed away and at 68 it makes me think sometimes of my own mortality.

April 05, 2015 | T. Pat Cavanaugh | Columnists


GE and America’s corporate bootleggers

I recently highlighted an important book that describes how politics really works. "Bootleggers and Baptists: How Economic Forces and Moral Persuasion Interact to Shape Regulatory Politics," by Adam Smith and Bruce Yandle, showed that prohibition became reality because it appeared to satisfy both Baptists and Bootleggers.

April 05, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


The weekend that changed the world

Approximately 1,982 years ago, a man died. In fact, many men died that day. We know for sure of three men. Two were tied to crosses and crucified. One was nailed to the cross. Had that been the end of it, it would have just been like so many other Roman crucifixions. But, unbeknownst to most anyone at the time, the first Easter weekend would become the most important weekend in the history of the world.

April 05, 2015 | Erick Erickson | Columnists


Newton Co. legislators busy with successful legislation

It was a great week for Newton County! I am ecstatic to tell you that "Haleigh's Law," the medical cannabis oil bill, passed both the House and Senate and was signed by the Governor this week. Also my bill, "Kelsey's Law," passed unanimously in the Senate near midnight on the last night. I was also very excited that Newton County Representative Pam Dickerson's cyber-bullying law passed both the House and the Senate.

April 05, 2015 | Dave Belton | Columnists


Growing jobs, investing in the community and trading squirrel pelts

Dear Editor,

March 29, 2015 | Ronnie Johnston | Columnists


If your mother tells you she loves you, check it out

The headline to this story is an adage taught by journalism schools throughout the country. News is supposed to be based on facts and reported without bias. But alas, reporters are human and have biases, acknowledged or not. If they are blatant and obvious, then we can dismiss them out of hand, (example: Chris Matthews saying, "I felt this thrill going up my leg," when listening to a speech given by then-presidential candidate Barack Obama).

March 29, 2015 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


President Spock?

The death of Leonard Nimoy saddened millions of Trekkies around the world (including me). But it wasn't just Trekkies who mourned. In the past month, it has become clear that Mr. Spock - the character Nimoy brought to life - had become a cultural icon extending far beyond the Trek universe.

March 29, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Thankful for a new generation of committed Methodist ministers

I spent last week helping to assess a group of people for a job I couldn't do if my life depended on it. Actually, what they were seeking is not a job; it is a calling. And my life here and in the hereafter depends on how well they do it.

March 22, 2015 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Baptists and Bootleggers:

It's apparent to anyone willing to look that a wide gap has grown between a Washington/Wall Street political class and the nation they want to rule. Less clear to many is the reason why.

March 22, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


The times are a-changin'

This week's column was going to be all about the comically nefarious Bobby Sigman and "Signgate," but then I heard about something even more terrible than a 70-year-old man stealing his opponent's campaign signs.

October 30, 2011 | Beth McAfee-Hallman | Columnists


Our rendezvous with destiny

Today, everyday citizens find ourselves at a crossroads. Abandon the ideals of the American Revolution, or take control of our destiny. The American people are called to action. Every generation must decide if it wants to leave politics to the politicians - or whether we are ready for our rendezvous with destiny.

October 30, 2011 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


The funny thing about politics

A funny man from Enigma named Bobby Rowan declared that anyone who loved politics was "genetically flawed." He said it with a laugh and a twinkle in his eye because he was very much afflicted with the disorder. Bobby was a State Senator from 1963-74, a gubernatorial candidate in 1974, a member of the Public Service Commission from 1989-94, and a lobbyist and raconteur without peer in between. Wikipedia finds that Rowan is one of only two "famous" people ever to come out of Enigma, the other being a gospel singer of some small note.

October 28, 2011 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


The obligation to vote

"We the People........." the first three words of the United States Constitution define us as a nation and the form of government created by the Founding Fathers. The Founding Fathers were determined to retain the power with the people to control the government and to forever be free of monarchs, dictators and oppressive hierarchies. In order to preserve and endure this power with the people, a citizenry must voice their views and concerns by their vote.

October 28, 2011 | By William Perugino | Columnists


Yarbrough: ‘Occupy’ protesters an un-bearable idea

News bulletin: The state Department of Natural Resources is reporting that black bears in North Georgia seem to be migrating toward Atlanta area.

October 25, 2011 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Travis: The story of the sidewalk steps

Directly across the street from my driveway is a short flight of steps that leads to the sidewalk. They appear rather innocuous, but they have been a part of some strange events.

October 25, 2011 | Paula Travis | Columnists


Careful with that T-shirt!

Sometime not so long ago, I started wearing T-shirts in public again, and that's when all my problems started. When I wore a simple polo-style shirt, I didn't have to worry about what anyone would assume about me. But now, I have to be extra careful because each T-shirt -with its slogan, picture or theme - is just a bad impression waiting to be made. It makes me wish I'd never stopped wearing long-sleeve flannel shirts, rolled up to the elbows. That's how I dressed in the '80s, but I'm trying to forget my clothing choices ...

October 23, 2011 | David McCoy | Columnists


Occupy Wall Street, the movie

Someone must make this into a movie: Mobs of angry people gathering outside the walls of the evildoer demanding revenge, if not justice, for the mad scientist who built the monster that terrorized the populace.

October 23, 2011 | Ric Latarski | Columnists


Americans lose recent debate

In the two hours of the Republican debate Tuesday night, more energy was spent in back-and-forth bickering than substantive answers. At times, I put my head down to avoid watching the candidates talk over each other. Due in part to a fast answer-and-rebuttal format, it felt more like a schoolyard argument than the serious discussion that would help propel the issues forward for the voters.

October 23, 2011 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


No need for county administrator

The article by the Newton County Commission Chairman, Oct. 16, 2011, regarding a change in the county government structure demands a common sense response.

October 21, 2011 | William Perugino Columnist | Columnists


Let's get organized

Would that getting organized were as easy as stores and websites devoted to organization suggest. Being organized is more mindset and habit than owning a pop-up dispenser for cotton swabs, a stacking system for cans or a rolling cart for laundry, as marketers would have you think. In just a few months, more than a few of those must-have organizers can end up collecting dust in a dark cabinet or sitting on a shelf in a store that sells donated goods.

October 21, 2011 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


It’s not the government schools, stupid

To quote the Church Lady on Saturday Night Live, "Well, isn't that special?" State School Superintendent John Barge and Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), have asked U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan for a waiver of the controversial No Child Left Behind law and, instead, to measure school performance on a broader basis, consisting of scores on a Criterion-Referenced Competency Test along with other factors in a "performance index."

October 19, 2011 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Drama in the classroom

Studying drama (plays) was usually a class favorite. Students like to take parts and read the play aloud. But different plays get different responses.

October 19, 2011 | Paula Travis | Columnists


Living the cartoon life

Like most primitive males my age, I'm a cartoon junkie. My pampered generation was raised on animated images of mice, ducks and rabbits stuffing dynamite down each other's pants and gargling with cyanide-laced cocktails.

October 16, 2011 | David McCoy | Columnists


Mobster rule

The decision to kill Anwar al-Awlaki was the result of months of legal review and reportedly not a single senior government official questioned the decision. Why am I not surprised?

October 16, 2011 | Patrick Durusau | Columnists


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