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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


Growing jobs, investing in the community and trading squirrel pelts

Dear Editor,

March 29, 2015 | Ronnie Johnston | Columnists


If your mother tells you she loves you, check it out

The headline to this story is an adage taught by journalism schools throughout the country. News is supposed to be based on facts and reported without bias. But alas, reporters are human and have biases, acknowledged or not. If they are blatant and obvious, then we can dismiss them out of hand, (example: Chris Matthews saying, "I felt this thrill going up my leg," when listening to a speech given by then-presidential candidate Barack Obama).

March 29, 2015 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


President Spock?

The death of Leonard Nimoy saddened millions of Trekkies around the world (including me). But it wasn't just Trekkies who mourned. In the past month, it has become clear that Mr. Spock - the character Nimoy brought to life - had become a cultural icon extending far beyond the Trek universe.

March 29, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Williams: Democracy and majority rule

President Barack Obama narrowly defeated Gov. Mitt Romney in the popular vote 51 percent to 48 percent. In the all-important Electoral College, the difference was larger, with Obama winning 303 electoral votes and Romney 206. Let's not think so much about the election's outcome but instead ask: What's so good about democracy and majority rule?

November 24, 2012 | By Walter Williams | Columnists


Just who’s in charge?

It never fails that whenever I sit down to compose this weekly column - or almost anytime I find myself at the computer - our little gray girl cat comes around mewling plaintively. In the wink of an eye, she's on the desktop, prowling back and forth across the keyboard, putting herself between the computer screen and me.

November 23, 2012 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Give thanks unto the Lord

"Rejoice in the Lord always... Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God."

November 23, 2012 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


The Vampire Project

First, I commend Mr. Ketchum for having enough community interest to write his article, "Rails to rails: It makes too much sense," Nov. 16. Mr. Ketchum appears to have not been around to hear all the reasons for the project to be deemed not feasible or to experience the long emotional struggle over the project.

November 23, 2012 | William Peruguino | Columnists


Hines: Counting siblings as well as blessings

One of the things I'm most thankful for is growing up in a family that gave thanks. Three times a day, at every meal, my father said this "blessing": Heavenly Father, pardon our sins, and give us hearts to be thankful for this and all our blessings. Amen.

November 21, 2012 | By Roger Hines | Columnists


We are to blame for church membership decline

A recent study from the Pew Forum on Religion and Life reveals that for the first time in our history, more people in the United States claim no religious affiliation than those who do. There are now more than 13 million self-described atheists and agnostics (nearly 6 percent of the U.S. public), as well as nearly 33 million people who say they have no particular religious affiliation. Why is that?

November 20, 2012 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Holidays on the square

I hope everyone who attended the annual Lighting of the Courthouse on the square had a wonderful time.

November 20, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


McCoy: The last unspoiled holiday

Thanksgiving is one of the last unspoiled holidays we have - a holiday that's still celebrated roughly the same way it's always been celebrated. Sure, there's always the unwavering Arbor Day, but when was the last time your boss gave you a day off to have a fancy dinner party with a bunch of trees? No, Thanksgiving is one of our last major holidays that would still be recognized by the originators. Do you think Joseph and Mary would recognize a modern Christmas? "Mary, who's the fat guy in the red suit? And were there any flying ...

November 20, 2012 | David McCoy | Columnists


Travis: Holidays on the square

I hope everyone who attended the annual Lighting of the Courthouse on the square had a wonderful time.

November 20, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


Yarbrough: We are to blame

A recent study from the Pew Forum on Religion and Life reveals that for the first time in our history, more people in the United States claim no religious affiliation than those who do. There are now more than 13 million self-described atheists and agnostics (nearly 6 percent of the U.S. public), as well as nearly 33 million people who say they have no particular religious affiliation. Why is that?

November 20, 2012 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Americans favor new approach to war on drugs

More than 40 years ago, the federal government launched a war on drugs. Over the past decade, the nation has spent hundreds of billions of dollars fighting that war, a figure that does not even include the high costs of prosecuting and jailing drug law offenders. It's hard to put a price on that aspect of the drug war since half of all inmates in federal prison today were busted for drugs.

November 17, 2012 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Rails to rails: It makes too much sense

The argument over the last couple of years in Newton County is that the abandoned rail road corridor that runs from Porterdale through Covington and Mansfield into Newborn should be turned into trails. The problem is many people in the community, including myself, feel that in the current economic climate, and with the counties budget constraints this is an issue not even worth consideration.

November 17, 2012 | Dustin Ketchem | Columnists


Carter: Thankful for the season

Thursday we give thanks. But, we needn't reserve gratitude for one day, nor cast thanks only to the heavens. Last week, I wrote about expressing appreciation to someone while he was still alive. This week, I share another story.

The chance to say thanks was recent, but my gratitude goes back 36 years. The place was Peachtree High School in DeKalb County, and I was a rising senior - an undersized, not terribly athletic, but determined kid on a football squad going nowhere.

November 17, 2012 | Maurice Carter | Columnists


Cushman: GOP renovation

Any change requires pain. Whatever we are doing now is easy (we think) compared to change, whatever it may be. Changing is hard. It requires us to think anew, to change our habits, our processes, our language. It's venturing out into the unknown. Without a compelling reason, people will stay the same and not change.

People begin to change only when the pain of what they are doing becomes more painful than the pain of change.

November 17, 2012 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Perugino: It’s still the spending

The Presidential election is history now leaving us awash with mind damaging cries of "tax the wealthy" and a myriad of other tax increase proposals. I have this vision of us driving straight towards a cliff but only looking out the side window. It doesn't take a graduate degree to figure out that you can't continue to spend more than you bring in without having the whole process crash. What one does need is the courage and responsibility to clearly look at the problem and accept the answers that are there. Indeed, "It really is still the spending ...

November 15, 2012 | William Peruguino | Columnists


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