So as to give some perspective, I'm going to ask readers for their guesses about human behavior before explaining my embarrassment by some of my fellow economists.
Last week Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jason Carter shared via this column his vision for public education in Georgia.
To understand the lack of enthusiasm most Americans feel about the midterm elections, it's important to recognize a vital distinction between government and community.
While new and novel might be exciting, routine and habit can help create a structure and framework for success. From eating breakfast, brushing our teeth or exercising every day, much of our lives are driven by routine. This reliance on routine behavior can startle us when we are driving and find ourselves not at our planned destination, but at our routine destination.
Tell me something: What do you think would happen if the United States concludes that Iran has been cheating and delaying and is about to pop a fully functional nuclear weapons program? Would President Obama respond by joining Israel to bomb the Iranian nuclear facilities to smithereens - or would he stall and equivocate? My bet is the latter and so, just to double down, is what I bet the Iranians are betting. They have taken the measure of Obama. He lacks menace.
The Food and Drug Administration can make two types of errors. It can approve a drug that has dangerous unanticipated side effects, or it can reject or delay approval of a drug that is safe and effective. Let's look at these errors, because to err on the side of under- or over-caution is costly.
It's a little thing, but it bugs me a lot.
If I die anytime soon - and I have no plans to do so at the moment - please see that the first paragraph of my obituary reads, "He was past president of the University of Georgia National Alumni Association." You can save for later paragraphs the part about my being often mistaken for Brad Pitt and my uncanny ability to put commas where they don't belong.
Ever since the 1976 election, I've understood the importance of voter turnout. My father was running for United States Congress in rural Georgia, having lost in 1974. He realized in early 1976 that running as a republican in Georgia, while Jimmy Carter was topping the democratic ticket, was going to be a hard feat to pull off, but confident of his ability to work hard, he trudged forward.
This past summer I travelled back home to attend the 50th year reunion of the class of 1964 of St Mary's High in Annapolis Maryland.
In 1913, an entrepreneur "said in many newspapers and over his signature that it would be possible to transmit the human voice across the Atlantic before many years." For that accurate assessment of reality, he was prosecuted for stock fraud. A U.S. District Attorney claimed that, "based on these absurd and deliberately misleading statements, the misguided public ... has been persuaded to buy stock in his company."
The director of the Secret Service, Julia Pierson, was questioned this past Tuesday by members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform regarding lapses in Secret Service Performance. The hearing focused primarily on an incident that took place on September 19. Omar J. Gonzalez, 42, allegedly jumped the White House fence, ran across the White House lawn, ran up a flight of stairs and through the North Portico door. He then allegedly entered the entrance hall, turned left and headed into the East Room, where he was tackled and subdued. A knife was allegedly found in his possession.
The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), sometimes called ISIS or IS, is a Sunni extremist group that follows al-Qaida's anti-West ideology and sees a holy war against the West as a religious duty. With regard to nonbelievers, the Quran commands, "And kill them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out." The Quran contains many other verses that call for Muslim violence against nonbelievers for the sake of Islamic rule.
Last Saturday while the Bulldog nation sweated out a 35-32 victory over the Tennessee Volunteers that should not have been as hard as our scholar-athletes made it, former head football coach and athletic director Vince Dooley's first team at UGA was recognized on the occasion of its 50th anniversary. As nice as that was, more - much more - needs to be done to honor the legendary Hall of Fame coach.
It's a fortunate thing that Bill O'Reilly's latest book, "Killing Patton," was written by him and not someone else. In that case, O'Reilly would have taken the poor person apart, criticizing the book for its chaotic structure, for its considerable padding and for its repellent admiration of a war-loving martinet who fought the Nazis and really never understood why. George S. Patton stood almost shoulder to shoulder with them in his anti-Semitism -- not that O'Reilly seems to have noticed or, for that matter, mentioned in his book.
A crinkled page dangles from a whiteboard in my home office, just beyond my peripheral vision as I work at my desk. The top corners are curled from nearly four years hanging by the same twine that secured it around my neck on the morning of November 5, 2008. While always in sight, this relic was out of mind for years. Lately, though, it haunts me. I hear scratching sounds that make me look up to see only an aging piece of paper fluttering ever so slightly against the blinds in my office window.
That sound you hear is silence - as millions of small business owners and entrepreneurs were left speechless this weekend from President Obama's latest insult.
If the governor and the state legislature had done their jobs, we the people wouldn't be deciding July 31 whether to raise the sales tax by one percent for the next 10 years to cover critically needed road projects throughout Georgia's 12 economic development regions. But the so-called "leaders" of the state couldn't bring themselves to do one of the jobs they were put there to do - namely, to provide adequate tax revenues to preserve and enhance transportation infrastructure now strained to the max. Even now, legislative leaders say if the T-SPLOST votes fail, they don't ...
I am not a very mystical man. As a Christian, I obviously believe in the supernatural, but mysticism isn't something I go looking for. Occasionally though, the Lord allows me to see something that is so far beyond the natural that it leaves my faith stronger and my sight in awe of God's mighty hand.
Ah, the good ol' Internet. You think it's just one big, anonymous playground. You can do anything. Well, it's a playground alright. And you can do almost anything online nowadays, but it's definitely not anonymous. Everyone needs to be mindful of what they write, post and share online. You don't know who's going to see it or what tiny detail in that Instagram photo or post on Facebook can give away your identity or location.
What comes to mind when you think of a beach vacation? Miles of white sand, a sparkling blue sea, a warm breeze ruffling your hair?
The 10-county, $7 billion metro Atlanta transportation referendum is set to be decided by voters on July 31.
When I first moved to Covington in 1970, to call someone on the telephone all you had to dial was the last four numbers of the seven-digit phone number.
Of course, calling Conyers or anywhere else besides Covington was long distance. It was a banner day when we could call Conyers and it was not long distance. But that improvement had its drawbacks. We now had to dial all seven digits of the phone number.
There are plenty of reasons that the economy is the most important issue of Election 2012.
Spare us any more hooey about "preventing fraud" and "protecting the integrity of the ballot box." The Republican-led crusade for voter ID laws is revealed as a cynical ploy to disenfranchise as many likely Democratic voters as possible, with poor people and minorities the main targets.
Nothing gets friends - or even strangers - more animated than talking about memorable moments long past that survive and even flourish with passing time.
What are Americans interested in? According to a Gallup poll released on June 14, it's the economy, in a variety of forms.
The poll found that "68 percent of Americans mention some aspect of the economy when asked about the most important problem facing the country today, with the economy in general (31 percent) and unemployment (25 percent) most often mentioned as specific concerns." (Poll of 1,004 adults, conducted June 7-10, with a sampling error of plus-or-minus 4 points.)
Who doesn't know Terry Kay? And if you know him, you just gotta love him. The dimpled and bearded Georgia-born writer of 12 novels was named 2012 Author of the Year in June by the Georgia Writers Association, the fourth time he's been honored by the group and a year after receiving its Lifetime Achievement Award. This time, he won for the short story, "The Greats of Cuttercane" released last year.
There are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. ~James Madison, speech at the Virginia Ratifying Convention, 1788.
News bulletin: Scientists working at the world's biggest atom smasher near Geneva have announced the discovery of a new subatomic particle that looks remarkably like the long-sought Higgs boson. Sometimes called the "God particle" because its existence is fundamental to the creation of the universe, the hunt for the Higgs involved thousands of scientists from all over the world.