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A Speech, a President, Unbounded by Reality

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.

January 25, 2015 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Dreaming of a 39-21-46

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 ...

January 18, 2015 | T. Pat Cavanaugh | Columnists


Belton: Wading through the first week

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.

January 18, 2015 | Dave Belton | Columnists


Liberals’ use of black people, part II

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.

January 10, 2015 | Walter Williams | Columnists


The Do-Something Congress

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.

January 10, 2015 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Obamacare and the Irritation Factor

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.

January 10, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


New Year joy

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.

January 03, 2015 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Potato Bowl already looking like the highmark for 2015

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.

January 03, 2015 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Getting your paper, rain or shine

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.

January 03, 2015 | T. Pat Cavanaugh | Columnists


Japan looks back

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.

December 27, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich-Cushman | Columnists


Friendships are truly the gift that KEEPS ON GIVING

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.

December 27, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


A lack of intelligence

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."

December 20, 2014 | Pete Mecca | Columnists


Holidays and a mother's love

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 ...

December 20, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Japan looks back

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.

December 13, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Commission director says progress being made in state’s charter school efforts

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.

December 13, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Cultural conceits and value of values

"Every society produces its own cultural conceits," Jack Weatherford wrote in "The Secret History of the Mongol Queens," "a set of lies and delusions about itself that thrives in the face of all contrary evidence. The Mongols believed that they could not be completely defeated."

May 01, 2011 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


America has no time for more silliness

Last week the White House released a long-form official Hawaiian birth certificate purporting to lay to rest ongoing controversy regarding Barack Hussein Obama II's qualification by birth to fill the office of president of The United States of America. At the heart of the matter has been rampant speculation that the conditions of the birth of the 44th president did not satisfy requirements set forth in the supreme law of the land, The Constitution of The United States of America.

May 01, 2011 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Mystery gives way to merriment

The ghostly visage of a grand four-columned, two-story home alone in a broad field of alfalfa appears in a photograph likely taken sometime in the first quarter of the 20th century. It sat beyond the eastern edge of Covington, now at the end of Floyd Street and behind the Newton County Library, but at the time the house was built -sometime between 1910 and 1918, it is thought - Floyd Street went only as far as Adams Street, according to local historian Charles King. Copies of the photo belong to Mrs. Nell Mundy and to Stanley Edwards, who found them in ...

April 29, 2011 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Understanding Gas fees can be taxing

A lot of press, including this publication, has been dedicated to trying to figure out why gas prices, already high, are headed further upward due to an increase in state and local sales taxes, effective Sunday.

April 29, 2011 | By Jim Tudor | Columnists


Yarbrough: Happiness a state of mind

I feel like a failure. For years, I have told you what a privilege it is to live in Georgia.

April 27, 2011 | By Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Giddens: An ode to Oxford

Our cottage in Oxford is once again a woodsy retreat, lush with fresh greenery and new growth.

April 27, 2011 | Tharon Giddens | Columnists


Tread lightly when stepping into local affairs

In case you missed this, there is a bill calling for the governor to be able to remove members of the Atlanta School Board if they keep chicken fighting among themselves rather than doing their job.

April 23, 2011 | By Ric Latarski Guest Columnist | Columnists


Holt: Legislative session a wrap

This year's legislative session is at last over.

April 23, 2011 | By Rep. Doug Holt Guest Columnist | Columnists


Mathews: Professional Learning Communities needed

If change were the criteria for judging school improvement, many school systems would be way down the road towards greater student learning. And, while "first order change" (an extension of the past consistent with existing knowledge and skills) is hardly the same as "second order change" (a break from the past requiring new knowledge and skills), both types are at work in Newton County School System as we seek continuous improvement.

April 23, 2011 | By Superintendet Gary Mathews Guest Columnist | Columnists


Harwell: You can't make this stuff up

Settle back friends, 'cause I'm about to tell you a story that may leave you slack-jawed and dumbfounded.

April 23, 2011 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Economics almost as simple as pie

Economics is much simpler than many highly-paid pundits would like you to believe.

April 22, 2011 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Let’s get on track for railroad buy

My head spins. My eyes cross. My neck tightens. I find it hard to draw a deep breath, and my hands tremble uncontrollably.

April 22, 2011 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Giddens: What we learned doing our homework

Donna and I have seen a lot of Newton County and environs in the past few weeks.

April 20, 2011 | Tharon Giddens | Columnists


Yarbrough: Dubious achievements in state government awards

Ladies and Gentlemen, the Yarbrough Worldwide Media and Pest Control Company is pleased to recognize members of the 2011 General Assembly who gave so much so that we could get so little.

April 20, 2011 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Revere, Doolittle, Yamamoto and me

Upon occasion, when meeting someone for the first time, I've fielded queries about my last name. A knowledgeable baseball fan, for instance, might ask if I were related to the late, great Ernie Harwell of Detroit Tigers broadcasting fame.

April 17, 2011 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


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