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Talking himself into a corner

Like a pitcher who has lost his fastball, Barack Obama has lost "the speech." The speech has always been central to the president and his presidency. He established his credentials with the one he delivered to the 2004 Democratic National Convention while still a state senator. He followed that with many others - Berlin, Cairo, Philadelphia on race, etc. - each one greeted with bobby soxer delirium, which Obama fully expected. In 2004, just before he spoke to the convention, he told his friend Marty Nesbitt that the excitement about him was yet to peak. "My speech is pretty good," he allowed.

June 03, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Who cares about global warming?

In 1971, I joined my parents and older sister in the second annual Earth Day by picking up litter in Carrollton.

April 18, 2010 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


The pace quickens

The pace of the Georgia Legislature is increasing as the clock ticks to the end of the final day, scheduled for April 21.

The Senate recently passed House Bill 307, which includes another tax cut for Georgians and an effort to keep the federal government's hands out of your pockets. The bill contains a $75 million cut in the state portion of a tax on health insurance premiums. Currently there is a 5 percent tax on those premiums, half going to local governments and half to the state. Under the gigantic "Obama Care" bill in Washington, that Georgia tax ...

April 14, 2010 | Staff Report | Columnists


Ryan hammers UGA’s Adams

Bob Ryan, noted sports columnist for the Boston Globe recently ripped the National Collegiate Athletic Association for considering University of Georgia president Michael Adams as CEO of that organization to succeed the late Myles Brand, saying it would be a "colossal mistake." The NCAA search is being conducted by Parker Executive Search of Atlanta, the same firm that recommended Adams for the UGA job.

"Start with the idea that he (Adams) is not an academic," Ryan opines, "Michael Adams is a spinmeister. He is a clever and ruthless politician. He knows how to amass allies - a power-seeking liquor magnate named ...

April 14, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Grow the carrots

It's spring break week for my children, and this year we are joining others who are staycationing. We spent Monday morning at the Georgia Aquarium, and Tuesday we went to the Atlanta Zoo, where I learned something new and was reminded of something I already knew.

What was new? Pandas bleat to communicate.

April 11, 2010 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Thank you, Marshall

Once upon what seems a long time ago, America's service industry took a personal, sincere interest in making certain that customers were thoroughly satisfied. All across our land successful businesses were operated by professionals who cared enough to make sure the customer was genuinely pleased with the service provided.

April 11, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


My day as a firefighter

Our homework for our last class day - public safety day - of Leadership Newton County, was to select a branch of city or county public safety and spend a day with them learning about what they do.

April 09, 2010 | Jennifer T. Long | Columnists


The customer comes first

Sometime ago I mentioned the worst customer service and the best customer service I ever received - all in the same week. I reprise the saga because the hero of the story recently and tragically died.

To refresh your memory, for a number of years I had done business with a local investment firm. The locals sold the company to a national concern and moved on. I assumed nothing would change with the new folks in charge. Silly me.

April 07, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Legislative twists and turns

The House returned to a posture of heavy committee work and light floor sessions last week. Having finished crossover, we are now working on bills the Senate has already passed. The next several legislative days will see a compressed repeat of the ramp up from committee work to lengthy time on the House floor. As such, we voted on nine bills and resolutions during the week. One measure was notable.

SB 206 would require that the Department of Audits and Accounts compile an annual report on all tax exemptions currently in effect in the state. The report is to be ...

April 07, 2010 | Rep. Doug Holt Guest columnist | Columnists


Stand and be counted

When our nation's founders wrote the Constitution of the United States, they required that the U.S. Census be taken every 10 years to count the number of people living in America. The first Census was taken in 1790 and has continued every 10 years since.

Our forefathers had a unique plan to empower the people over their new government by counting every person living in the newly created United States of America. The Census has been used for many things, including the establishment of military service. Today, it is primarily used to determine representation in Congress, thus ensuring ...

April 04, 2010 | Kathy Morgan Guest columnist | Columnists


Short and sweet

After the longest and coldest winter season in recent memory, what appears to be a short and sweet spring is here. My neighbor's Bradford pear trees blossomed last Saturday afternoon right before my eyes as I watched the NCAA "Sweet 16" basketball tournament. Realizing that it appeared to be snowing outside, in disbelief I went over to the window; there I found the blanket of white filling my field of vision to be those Bradford blossoms billowing in a fairly strong breeze, looking for all the world like the snows we experienced earlier in the year.

April 04, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


The appeal of an inflatable gorilla

During graduate school, I had to take a marketing course - an insipid class that I hated completely and thoroughly. Yet, despite that forced march, I must confess my demented fondness for automotive advertisements. The various dealer ads fascinate me, even if I don't understand how they can possibly lead to increased sales. Maybe if I'd paid more attention in class, I might understand some of the insanity that goes on down at the car lot. I understand the hotdogs and hamburgers, the flags and banners, and the giveaways: that's all easy. But I don't understand why ...

April 02, 2010 | David McCoy | Columnists


Getting down to business

I can't believe I only have one more class day with Leadership Newton County. These past few months have really flown by, but every class day I get to slow down a bit and study a facet of our community that few can devote five minutes to, let alone an eight-hour day.

April 02, 2010 | Jennifer T. Long | Columnists


Tax pledges not what they used to be

Americans for Tax Reform, an organization that opposes tax increases, for years has asked legislators from across the country to make this promise: "I will oppose and vote against any and all efforts to increase taxes."

March 31, 2010 | Tom Crawford | Columnists


Horsing around with the budget

I have a lot of respect for third-term State Sen. Ronnie Chance (R-Tyrone.) Sen. Chance's father, Louie, and I grew up in College Park and I know for a fact the young man comes from good stock. Louie Chance is a Great American.

Ronnie Chance is also politically skilled enough to tell me pointedly that you and I need to understand how grim Georgia's financial situation is these days. Maybe he is tired of my digs at his colleagues fretting over pistol-packing preachers and unauthorized tracking devices on our body parts and wants us to know some serious ...

March 31, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


The junior-senior prom

Last weekend one of those things, which occasionally remind me that I'm a product of a bygone era, came along. The event was the Junior-Senior Prom for Eastside High School, where my wife has taught science since it opened just before the close of the 20th century and from which our two youngest children graduated. My wife teaches mostly seniors, and I'm currently serving as a substitute teacher in classes containing mostly juniors and seniors. So we both looked forward to seeing the kids in their finery and maybe to sneaking in a dance if, by some miracle ...

March 28, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


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