Happy Fourth of July!
I would like to provide a brief history on the intent and origin of the 2050 Plan that I think is important as we begin the public input sessions on the Base Line Ordinances (BLO).
I wonder how Leroy Jones, the black Chairman of the Essex County Democrat Committee, looks at himself in the mirror. I wonder how he looks at his family and the members of his community. I wonder how he feels as he sits in the pews of the black church he attends, and how he feels while sitting in the black barbershop. More specifically, I wonder how the people of Essex County, New Jersey as a whole, feel about Jones.
We declared our independence from Great Britain 238 years ago this week. It was a declaration long in coming, brought about by the overreaching rule of King George III and Britain's insistence on taxation without representation.
The things you learn while surfing the Internet in desperation for column material. Did you know that there is a National Association for the Humor-Impaired? May Jimmy Carter (speaking of the humor-impaired) wash my socks if I am not telling the truth.
A friend of mine worked for a small-town newspaper years ago and had to write the weather report. The county fair was approaching but the prediction was for rain. So the editors, fearing the wrath of local merchants, ordered my friend to change "rainy" to "sunny." That was the newspaper's policy. It has since been adopted by much of the Republican Party.
With trouble brewing big time in the Middle East again, it got me thinking of a time when we had similar issues in Asia.
Many view America's education as a failure, but in at least one important way, it's been a success - a success in dumbing down the nation so that we fall easy prey to charlatans, hustlers and quacks. You say, "Williams, that's insulting! Explain yourself." OK, let's start with a question or two.
Let me begin by saying that I regard Randy Vinson as intelligent, articulate, insightful and a sincerely good person, but I never forget Randy is a planner with one concept of how the world should be planned.
It's an off-year election, and the White House is securely in the Democratic camp for two more years. That means the focus is turning instead to down-ballot races.
This is a splendid time to remember the First World War. It started 100 years ago this month with the June 28 shooting of the Austrian archduke and his wife. By the end of the summer, much of Europe was engaged in a war that lasted about four years, toppled four empires, precipitated the communist revolution, created by fiat the modern Middle East, recognized Zionism, made the U.S. a world power and cost the lives of about 10 million fighting men. Historians are still trying to figure out what happened.
In my home hangs a photograph of a rather large and deep hole on the side of an asphalt road. It is the aftermath of an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) - or in more simple terms, a homemade bomb - that went off just as the Humvee in which I was riding passed over it.
ROME - Birthdays have always been a big deal in my family. When I was growing up, the birthday girl (or man, in the case of my father) would be regaled with a rendition of "Happy Birthday" during breakfast. The special attention continued throughout the day and included letting the honoree choose the dinner menu and being the center of family conversation. Birthdays were not about presents, but about being the center of attention.
For We the People, Obama's time in office has thus far been tantamount to a march through hell with the complete deconstruction of America strapped to our backs, and with despair and immiseration clinched in our teeth. And for the privilege of being unwilling participants in this death march, Obama believes we should be grateful. Obama has usurped and overrun Congressional authority in less time than it took for the Kudzu vine to overrun the South.
Whose fault is the current debacle in Iraq? It could be Nouri al-Maliki's since he is the country's strongman and has alienated the minority Sunnis. It could be George W. Bush's because he started the whole thing off with possibly the stupidest war in history, the Children's Crusade exempted on account of youth. The one person who is not at fault, we are told over and over again, is the current president of the United States. Like Millard Fillmore, he has kept us out of war.
In the war between the rich and the poor, I'm enlisting on the side of the underdog - the rich. What a drubbing they've been taking! Across the nation, but particularly in cities such as New York and Washington, the rich are incessantly accused of being slyly manipulative and self-serving. For instance, they support charter schools. Apparently, there is nothing worse.
An officer of the law asked if he could share the table where I was chowing down on a mound of North Georgia BBQ. It was a big table, and the joint was packed, so the other diners and I scooted over and let our new guest settle in. "Y'all aren't carrying guns, are ya?" asked the man in uniform. When we assured him we'd left our firearms at home, he said, "I feel naked if I don't have my gun with me." We ate, enjoying our small talk and the best BBQ I've eaten ...
I was at the sausage-making plant last week, better known as the Georgia General Assembly. I was there for a good cause. The state Senate was honoring Dick Pettys, one of the finest journalists to walk through the doors of the state Capitol, and I was asked to be a part of that special day.
Judge Jeanine Pirro proffered the question "Did Obama lie his way into the White House?" The succinct answer is: "Of course he did." And only the most dishonest and/or the most uninformed people would argue otherwise. The weight of documented proof is as demonstrable as traffic jams on the Belt Parkway in New York.
On Saturday of last week, I attended the annual workshop meeting of the folks who make Newton County's 2050 plan work.
Pardon the cliche - I think we have come upon a teachable moment. I am referring to the crisis in Ukraine and not just what it teaches us about the future but also what it teaches us about the past. Vladimir Putin has turned us all into Neville Chamberlain. The umbrella, please.
Almost two decades ago, heartbroken and single, I wrote out a list that described the man of my dreams. Less than two years later, my husband and I married, proving that dreams do indeed come true. (Yes, he met and even exceeded all criteria).
People in the media and academia are mostly leftists hell-bent on growing government and controlling our lives. Black people, their politicians and civil rights organizations have become unwitting accomplices. The leftist pretense of concern for the well-being of black people confers upon them an aura of moral superiority and, as such, gives more credibility to their calls for increasing government control over our lives.
The scene: I-16 near Dublin. WAAANGH! REEP! REEP! REEP!
With all this mess we have been going through with Russia again, I have been thinking that, as baby boomers, we have lived under fear of some type of war with Russia all of our lives.
The standard media coverage of President Barack Obama's new budget claimed the proposals included $600 billion of budget cuts over the next decade.
As Americans, we have the unfortunate habit of thinking about others by seeing their actions and reactions from our point of view. We put ourselves in their figurative shoes, i.e., we know about their situations, constraints, advantages and options, but we don't know what is going on in their minds. This may be due to our relative lack of diversity, the geographic size of our nation or our relatively insular upbringing.
A fortnight ago, my column focused on how Philadelphia's schoolteachers have joined public-school teachers in cities such as Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles, Columbus, New York and Washington in changing student scores on academic achievement tests. Teachers have held grade- fixing parties, sometimes wearing rubber gloves to hide fingerprints. In some cases, poorly performing students were excused from taking exams to prevent them from dragging down averages. As a result of investigations, a number of schoolteachers and administrators have been suspended, fired or indicted by states' attorneys general.
As predicted in this space a few weeks ago, there is compromise legislation pending in the General Assembly regarding the Common Core curriculum, the controversial program that seeks to establish consistent education standards across the country.
Vladimir Nabokov considered Anton Chekhov's "The Lady with the Dog" one of the best short stories ever written. For what it's worth, I agree. The plot is a simple one. A womanizing banker from Moscow seduces a young woman at the Black Sea resort of Yalta -- and then, calamitously, falls in love. The dalliance becomes an obsession for them both. They remain married to others but imprisoned by their passion for one another. The banker's name is Dmitri. He was hardly the last Russian to lose his wits in Crimea.