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Articles by Section - Columnists


Dalton State College a major player in area’s economic rebound

Remember the story of "The Little Engine That Could?" That could very well describe the city of Dalton, a town of some 34,000 nestled in the corner of Northwest Georgia, not far from the Tennessee line.

September 10, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Blind to the world’s broken windows

"All politics is local," the late Speaker of the House Tip O' Neill famously said. How right he was. The world today is suffering from the failure of President Obama to apply a school of law enforcement that happened to originate in O'Neill's hometown, Boston, and goes by the moniker "broken windows." The problem, simply stated, is that Obama was deaf to the sound of tinkling glass.

September 10, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Robin Hood and the Digital Revolution

The lovable legend of Robin Hood with his band of Merry Men making life difficult for the Sheriff of Nottingham offers a great way to understand the politics of 21st century America.

September 06, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Applying smart power vs. don’t do stupid stuff

What a difference a year makes. Last September, the Obama administration and the media were cheering happenstance as victory. A quick review of last year's events: the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government on civilians, tough talk by President Barack Obama, an administration push for a congressional vote for use of force, Secretary of State John Kerry's off-the-cuff remark regarding Syria giving up chemical weapons, Russian President Vladimir Putin leveraging the remark into action, the Obama administration claiming a great solution.

September 04, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Vox explanation highlights gap between political world and everybody else

A recent column on Vox.com may have inadvertently highlighted the gap between the nation's political elites and the rest of the nation. Vox is an "explanatory journalism" site founded by former Washington Post columnist and blogger Ezra Klein.

September 04, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Pumpkins growing weary

Can it be? Is it September already? One of my favorite tunes, "September Song," was written by Kurt Weill and Maxwell Anderson for a Broadway musical in 1938 called "Knickerbocker Holiday. The lyrics could apply today to the current political season in Georgia - "For it's a long, long time from May to December, but the days grow short when you reach September."

September 02, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Try realism in the Middle East

America rarely does time capsules anymore, but the ones it does should include videos from February 2011 of American TV reporters exulting in the triumph of the Arab Spring. "This is the sound of a people rising," ABC's Terry Moran told us from Cairo. For Egyptians, it was a day "when a people rose and made themselves a new country, a new world, a new life."

September 02, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Blacks must confront reality

Though racial discrimination exists, it is nowhere near the barrier it once was. The relevant question is: How much of what we see today can be explained by racial discrimination? This is an important question because if we conclude that racial discrimination is the major cause of black problems when it isn't, then effective solutions will be elusive forever. To begin to get a handle on the answer, let's pull up a few historical facts about black Americans.

August 30, 2014 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Time to call a spade a spade

As the character Cecily said to Miss Fairfax in a play written by Oscar Wilde entitled "The Importance of being Earnest": "When I see a spade I call it a spade."

August 30, 2014 | Mychal massie | Columnists


In 1970, we had a riot; Ferguson looks like war

The news from Ferguson, Missouri, has brought back unpleasant memories from the long-ago riots in Asbury Park, New Jersey. It was the summer of 1970, and I was a young teenager close enough to the action to be appropriately frightened.

August 28, 2014 | Staff Report | Columnists


The Value of Work and Labor Day

My first paying job was cleaning the bathrooms at the First Baptist Church of Carrollton, Georgia, where I was a member. I was 14, the minimum age for "children" to work. This was neither glamorous nor exciting work, but useful and needed work. On Sundays I often over heard the "little old ladies" of the church commenting on the cleanliness of the bathroom. I remember my subsequent feeling of pride. While not a glamorous work, my actions were helpful and appreciated by those who used the facilities. For providing this useful service I earned minimum wage in 1981, ($3.35 ...

August 28, 2014 | Staff Report | Columnists


Family’s tragedy: text less, live more

It is a potential killer whose numbers rival the deadly Ebola virus and it doesn't get near the attention it should. Unlike the dreaded illness currently ravaging West Africa this is one with a quick cure.

August 26, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


The new face of evil

As Hannah Arendt foresaw, we are once again up against the question of evil. An American photojournalist, James Foley, was presented to the camera and methodically decapitated. The instrument was not the ax reserved for royalty or the whooshing blade prompted by that reformer Joseph-Ignace Guillotin, but an ordinary looking knife. Death would be neither swift nor painless. This, somewhere in the bleached desert, was pure evil.

August 26, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Decision Pending on Newton’s Government Structure

The structure of county government is once again on the agenda of the Board of Commissioners (BOC), which has scheduled a work session for Aug. 26, 2014. As readers may recall, this has been a topic of discussion for several months and the BOC has met with experts from both the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia (ACCG) and the regional planning agency. Representatives of both clearly have indicated that the current "hybrid" system of having both a full time Commission needs to be changed to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of county government.

August 23, 2014 | Larry McSwain | Columnists


50 years in newspaper industry

The other day I found myself thinking on how long I have been a part of the newspaper industry - it turns out that this will be my 50th year, with one year of my life working with mentally challenged adults and two working with people going into their final sunset, through Hospice.

August 23, 2014 | T. Pat Cavanaugh | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Emily attacks Sarah

There are few things sadder than girls being mean to girls. Boys seem to be able to slough off slights and events, pick up the ball and play again. Girls tend to hold grudges longer, become more self-conscious and end up creating divisions between each other.

August 22, 2010 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


The end of the world as we know it

As the 20th century closed I was still toiling as a middle school social studies teacher. I recall archaeologists, in 1999, unearthing pottery shards in a remote area of Pakistan. Primitive writings evident thereupon were carbon-dated to approximately 5500 B.C., and linguists subsequently determined the etchings originated within the extinct Indus civilization.

August 22, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Robert Redford

I've never told anyone this before. I turned down Robert Redford - not once but several times. Oh, his pleadings were sincere. And passionate. He dangled beautiful possibilities before me, were I to return his ardor, but waxed equally eloquent about the sadness and wasted opportunities, were I not to respond. I savored each distinctive flourish of his signature. I imagined him at his desk in the mountains of Utah, picking each word so carefully, crafting a letter that just couldn't be resisted. I could envision the sun glinting off his strawberry blond hair, still thick, hair through which ...

August 20, 2010 | Barbara Morgan Columnist | Columnists


The days grow short on political campaigns

Congratulations, dear reader. Silly Season, aka, the 2010 political campaign, is nearing the end. Most of the wannabes have been shunted aside and we are in the short days of the campaign. On Nov. 2, it will all be over. Can December come soon enough?

August 18, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Thanks for your support

Our campaign for the Georgia Public Service Commission came to an end on August 10 when Tim Echols garnered 52 percent of the vote. Between May 1 and Aug. 10, we drove nearly 20,000 miles across Georgia, met wonderful people and shared our ideas on making this state better for all of us. Working hard to have been the first Newton County resident elected statewide was both gratifying, rewarding and eye opening, all at the same time.

August 17, 2010 | John Douglas Senator | Columnists


A Bold Spirit of Adventure

I'm a planner. When I worked in finance, I loved planning the budget process - how would it unfold, who would be involved, how we would ensure we met our target. I was most satisfied when we had made all the plans and were ready to begin.

August 15, 2010 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Big Country, Jawjuh, and Newt

Remember the nursery rhyme of three blind mice? The children's fable of three little pigs? Perchance, might you recall "The Three Stooges?" If not, evidence suggests that all of them now serve as elected officials.

August 15, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Never-ending seasons

My head is spinning. I'm caught up in a vortex of seasons that have become indistinguishable because of the speed of their circling around me. They all seem to blend into one, with no beginning or end. I don't know where I am or where I'm going. Might you have the same feeling this time of year?

August 12, 2010 | Barbara Morgan Columnist | Columnists


What about discretionary spending?

"This debt is like a cancer. It's truly going to destroy the country from within." These two sobering words were spoken by the heads of President Barack Obama's national debt commission as reported by the Atlanta Journal Constitution. The 2011 federal debt is estimated to amount to $47,000 for every U.S. resident or $14 trillion. Nine-hundred twenty billion in U.S. IOUs is held by China.

August 10, 2010 | Bob Furnad Guest Columnist | Columnists


Just call me SugarNat

Once upon a time, way back in 1969, this tender, sheltered kid from a really small town went off to school, landing in Statesboro. That's where Georgia Southern College, a tiny camp of some 6,000 students, was located. And that was it. There wasn't even a McDonald's! Fast food was an emporium on Fair Road called Burger Chef. No kidding.

August 07, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Murder, mayhem and an old song

Do you ever wonder why children aren't completely insane by the time they're adults?

August 06, 2010 | David McCoy | Columnists


Separate but equal seems to be back

I never thought the days of "separate but equal" would return. It was well settled that Plessy vs. Ferguson (1896) was bad law. I wake up one morning to find that both liberals and conservatives both support "separate but equal," at least for Muslims.

August 06, 2010 | Patrick Durusau | Columnists


It’s hard to stay cool and calm

It started a few days ago. And, yes, it was one of these just too hot and humid days when tempers can get a little short. All our days these days are that way, but that comes with living in Georgia in August.

August 06, 2010 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


The outspoken leader

I had considered the recently-constituted Special Council on Tax Reform and Fairness for Georgians just so much political hooey until I saw who was elected chairman of the council: Adolphus Drewry Frazier, Jr.

August 04, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Running away from the president

When Sarah Palin endorsed Karen Handel prior to the Republican primary, Handel embraced that support and has been attached at the hip to Palin - figuratively speaking - ever since.

August 03, 2010 | Tom Crawford | Columnists


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