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Technology will trump ‘Bootleggers’ mentality

In recent weeks, I've written about how the "Bootleggers and Baptists" dynamic corrupts regulatory politics. Bruce Yandle developed this concept decades ago. He observed that Prohibition became reality because Baptists wanted people to stop drinking while the ban on legal alcohol put money in the Bootlegger's pockets. The do-gooders succeeded only because the money-grubbers joined their effort.

April 12, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Living through the times

It seems every day now some famous personality or former friend has passed away and at 68 it makes me think sometimes of my own mortality.

April 05, 2015 | T. Pat Cavanaugh | Columnists


GE and America’s corporate bootleggers

I recently highlighted an important book that describes how politics really works. "Bootleggers and Baptists: How Economic Forces and Moral Persuasion Interact to Shape Regulatory Politics," by Adam Smith and Bruce Yandle, showed that prohibition became reality because it appeared to satisfy both Baptists and Bootleggers.

April 05, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


The weekend that changed the world

Approximately 1,982 years ago, a man died. In fact, many men died that day. We know for sure of three men. Two were tied to crosses and crucified. One was nailed to the cross. Had that been the end of it, it would have just been like so many other Roman crucifixions. But, unbeknownst to most anyone at the time, the first Easter weekend would become the most important weekend in the history of the world.

April 05, 2015 | Erick Erickson | Columnists


Newton Co. legislators busy with successful legislation

It was a great week for Newton County! I am ecstatic to tell you that "Haleigh's Law," the medical cannabis oil bill, passed both the House and Senate and was signed by the Governor this week. Also my bill, "Kelsey's Law," passed unanimously in the Senate near midnight on the last night. I was also very excited that Newton County Representative Pam Dickerson's cyber-bullying law passed both the House and the Senate.

April 05, 2015 | Dave Belton | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Not talking with my mouth full

I wasn't at Chick-fil-A on Wednesday, Aug. 1. For the record, I haven't eaten there in at least 60 days. That's not a political statement or a reflection of my food preferences; it's a necessity while trying (with some success) to get my clothes to fit again.

August 11, 2012 | Maurice Carter | Columnists


Finally a positive energy bill

What with all the terrible tragedies happening around the country and the wash of divisive and negative news on all fronts, it is indeed refreshing to see that we are making progress in one area: a good energy bill was proposed in the Senate that would begin to move us forward towards energy independence. This is a good but not perfect bill and goes a long way to moving us off our current energy policy failure.

Senator John Hoeven, R-ND, recently introduced the Domestic Energy and Jobs Act, which would greatly expand access to energy and simplify burdensome regulations that ...

August 09, 2012 | William Peruguino | Columnists


Literacy starts early

Kim Degonia has a pretty full plate as it is. She's a part-time magistrate judge for Newton County and a municipal judge in Porterdale. She and her husband have three boys, ages 5, 9 and 11, whom she calls "trouble," and she teaches yoga on the side "to preserve my sanity," she laughs.

August 09, 2012 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Saluting teachers

Believe it or not, I have written a column for one year and this one marks the beginning of a second year. I have yet to understand why you find the trivia of my life interesting, but I am glad you enjoy it.

August 07, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


The heavy burden of government

In my hometown, everyone is required to have a landline telephone so local officials can reach us with a reverse 911 call.

August 04, 2012 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


The emerging ‘drone’ culture

The age of the drones has arrived. It's not possible to uninvent these Orwellian devices, but we can - and must ­- restrain their use.

August 04, 2012 | Eugene Robinson | Columnists


Stuck in beeping reverse

From Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, commercial aircraft were diverted from airspace over the southeastern U.S. when pilots reported hearing loud, persistent beeping in the area. Flights returned to normal once FAA investigators confirmed the beeps were coming from a backup alarm sounding as the State of Georgia shifted into reverse. However, they warn the noise may continue for at least a decade.

August 04, 2012 | Maurice Carter | Columnists


The devil is in the details

As the saying goes, the devil is in the details. It means the devil will have his way with you if you don't pay attention to the finer points in the big plans or schemes that you might devise. He's a crafty fellow and lies in wait in the most innocuous spots to trip you up.

August 02, 2012 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Fierce Five and Olympic Records

Our fascination with the Olympics goes beyond the near-perfect performances of the athletes. It also includes their stories. We watch and experience the trials and triumphs of people who fail, who get up and who triumph once again. Possibly through watching how Olympians perform under pressure, we can learn how to perform under pressure, as well.

Two examples stand out in my mind from this week, in women's gymnastics and men's swimming.

August 02, 2012 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Watching the London Olympics after Atlanta

Hard to believe, but it has been 16 years since the Olympic Games were held in our state. As I watch the festivities in London, I remembered the phone calls I had received over the past year from media members in Great Britain, asking me if I had any thoughts on what was going to happen when the Games began in London. Here is what I told them:

July 31, 2012 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Family photos found

My sister and her daughter and granddaughter came to visit me last week. My niece is researching our family history and wanted to pick our brains and copy whatever pictures we had of our parents and grandparents.

July 31, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


Be inspired by the Olympics

I'm ready for the Olympic Games, ready to watch the best athletes in the world giving it all they have. I'm ready to be inspired.

After a long Republican presidential primary soap opera, continuing mediocre economic news, ongoing information on the Greek crisis, the current silliness of the presidential campaign quips of the day, and last week's tragedy in Aurora, Colo., Americans are in desperate need of inspiration.

July 28, 2012 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Praise for Bush’s PEPFAR

This is a moment for all Americans to be proud of the single best thing George W. Bush did as president: launching

July 28, 2012 | Eugene Robinson | Columnists


Declining views of the economy put Obama’s re-election at risk

Consumer confidence fell to the lowest levels of 2012 this past week. Most Americans believe that both the economy and their own personal finances are getting worse. Just 25 percent believe the economy is getting better, and only 22 percent said the same about their personal finances.

Still, the lows of 2012 aren't nearly as bad as they were in the previous three years. But the trend is discouraging. It looks like yet another year starting with improved outlooks for the economy that fade by summer, and it's clearly taking a toll on the American people.

July 28, 2012 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Carter: Where do we draw the line?

I fully understand why President Barack Obama, candidate Mitt Romney, Speaker of the House John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid don't want to talk about gun control in the wake of the Aurora, Colo. shootings. I don't want to talk about it either.

Not because I don't think it needs to be discussed, but because we've become inept as a nation talking about anything that stirs emotions. Politicians are concerned with losing votes; I'm concerned about losing the goodwill of friends, neighbors and even family. I'm reluctant to throw more fuel on ...

July 28, 2012 | Maurice Carter | Columnists


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