Enthusiastic, entertaining, energized and eminent, President Obama's demeanor and delivery at the State of the Union belied his political reality. Unbowed, unbroken and possibly unaffected by the recent midterm Republican wave, Obama displayed his great skill by delivering an emotional teleprompter-driven speech that was a throwback to his first election. Varying tempo, pitch, passion and inflection, his speech was more a theatrical performance than a delivery of a prewritten, pre-released text.
Our 18-year-old granddaughter is living with us again as she goes to school, and I love having her. It reminds me of the time she was a baby living with us, and she was the love of my life - besides Molly, of course - and I took her everywhere. I packed her on my back as I covered meetings, we visited Disneyland every week, I decked her out in Disney clothes, we rode every mall merry-go-round in Southern California, we watched some of the most God-awful movies together - the adventures of Lava Boy being the worst - we enjoyed our evening walks ...
My first week of legislative "work" is complete, and it has been a whirlwind. It is hard to imagine how any person can meet so many people and deal with so many issues so quickly. Luckily, I have a very good mentor in former Representative Doug Holt who is helping me wade through the distractions.
Last week's column focused on the ways liberals use blacks in pursuit of their leftist agenda, plus their demeaning attitudes toward black people. Most demeaning are their double standards. It was recently reported that Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., the House majority whip, spoke at a 2002 gathering hosted by white supremacist leaders when he was a Louisiana state representative. Some are calling on Scalise to step down or for House Speaker John Boehner to fire him. There's no claim that Scalise made racist statements.
As members of the 114th Congress were sworn into office on Tuesday, their party affiliations described what happened last November: 246 of the 435 representatives and 54 of the 100 senators are Republican.
As we enter 2015, the politics of the president's health care law are little changed from last year or the year before, or any year since it was passed. The details change with the calendar, but year after year, the law remains a major drag on President Obama's popularity and legacy.
New Year's is the almost-perfect holiday (Christmas takes the blue ribbon). It's a combination of reflecting, celebrating or possibly just being glad of getting rid of the old year - while at the same time looking forward to the potential and possibilities of the year to come. It's the bridge between the past and present, where what has been done is over - but the future still looks bright, if a bit hazy.
I had just returned from the local toxic waste site where I had disposed of my holiday fruit cakes and was busy cramming my Christmas tree down the garbage disposal (don't ask), when I heard a knock at the door. I figured it was the Environmental Protection Agency coming to talk to me about polluting the toxic waste site with fruit cakes.
The rain this past week certainly has been a blessing as a good rain always is, but for newspaper people in circulation, inclement weather has always been one big pain in the rear.
Almost four decades ago, when I was in Mrs. Carmichael's Sunday School class, I memorized Luke Chapter 2, (the King James version of course). It took hours of practice and study, but the words still come when prompted by the line before.
Maybe it's the fact that I have more days in the rearview mirror than I have ahead of me, but at this special time of year I am more aware than ever of the gift of friendships. Friendships are always the correct size, the right color and don't require a set of instructions on how to operate them. They are truly the gift that keeps on giving.
Intelligence school in Denver, CO was thought-provoking, complicated, and opened enigmatic doors I never thought existed. We mastered the art of dissemination; gained knowledge of codes; planned and plotted and analyzed envisioned missions; studied Soviet military equipment to master photographic interpretation; and were privy to a few top secret particulars that are now prehistoric. As Sun Tzu wrote 2,500 years ago in his military masterpiece The Art of War, "Know your enemy better than you know yourself."
This is my second Christmas season without my mother, and so far it's been harder than the first. I had known that the first year would be hard, and all I really cared about was surviving it. Activity was my friend: My sister Kathy and I spent the fall wrapping up her estate, selling her house, and sharing her prized possessions with family and friends. We talked every day. Much of our connection was activity-based: Was her account closed? Were the papers signed? It was hard, but I had known that it was going to be hard -- so I ...
Japan is working hard at forgetting. Its prime minister, Shinzo Abe, suggests in code-talk that Japan was the victim of World War II - no war criminals at all, thank you - and its influential conservative press, with a wink from the government, is determined to whitewash the country's use of sex slaves during the war. This sort of thing can be catching. Maybe others will forget why they consider Japan a friend.
You may recall that I vigorously opposed passage of a constitutional amendment in 2012 creating the State Charter School Commission that would allow an alternative method for authorizing charter schools in Georgia. You may recall, also, that the amendment passed handily. So much for my vigor.
I got a good lesson in wealth management this week. Not from a high-powered financial advisor, but from the retrospective of a 103-year-old life lived well.
It's 2011, and we're being rocked by earthquakes, tornados, financial crises and bloody revolutions in the third world. If there were ever a time to completely lose all of your senses and run around town acting nuts, now is as good a time as any. Just in the past two days, I've seen signs that "crazy" is becoming the new norm. While driving down one of our major roads, I passed a man who was waving his arms and screaming at some invisible antagonist. Later, I walked out of a building and saw another man having an ...
I thought it would be easy, but it is really difficult to find the words to express what I want. Just know that Brenda Sumner is one of the most wonderful people in the world and in my eyes is a hero.
I'll never forget Lester Maddox, 75th governor of Georgia, presiding in that capacity from 1967-1971. 'Twould be presumptuous to speak for everyone else, but I can't help but think that anyone who actually met the man at more than a superficial political meet-and-greet would agree.
I've had enough shocks and scares to script an entire lifetime's worth of nightmares. Once, while walking in the woods, I stumbled upon a coiled snake, just staring at me and daring me to come closer. Another time, I slipped off a log and fell into a creek on an icy February afternoon. Then, there was that one Easter night when a drunk driver slammed into the family Ford Galaxy, right as we were turning into our driveway. Stepping on rattlesnakes, falling in a freezing creek, and being rammed by another car are themes worthy of the worst ...
An old English nursery rhyme from the 16th century begins with the words: "If wishes were horses, then beggars (or poor men) would ride."
The first news report on what turned out to be the assault on the Pakistani compound where Osama bin Laden was hiding apparently was a tweet from a guy complaining about all the helicopter noise late at night.
Sheila the Family Wonderdog is one proud pooch today.
Today is Mother's Day, and just like most of you, Molly and I have dispatched flowers and candy to my mother to tell her we were thinking about her and to show our love.
One can only imagine the joy in Munchkin Land when Dorothy's house dropped out of the sky and killed the Wicked Witch of the East. No longer did the innocent little people in Hollywood's magnificent 1939 classic "The Wizard of Oz" have to live in dread of the evil one. "Ding dong, the witch is dead!" they sang as they danced with glee.
February 11 is now known as the Day of Departure among Egyptians.
I discovered quite by accident that this was nurses' week.
Wasn't it all just too beautiful?
The granddog Sophie takes me to some interesting places.
Osama bin Laden is deader than a doornail and sleeping with the fish. May he rot in Hell and may those who danced and burned American flags after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, which killed more than 3,000 innocent people end up there with him, minus their virgins. Applause to President Barack Obama, who changed a lot of opinions about his personality and his leadership abilities. It was on his orders that a group of Navy Seals stormed into a compound outside Islamabad, the capital city of a joke called Pakistan, and took out bin Laden and ...