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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


Ryan’s diet of whoppers -

Has there ever been a more dishonest presidential campaign than the one Republicans are waging right now?

September 01, 2012 | Eugene Robinson | Columnists


Conventions don’t matter

Political junkies get excited about the Republican and Democratic national conventions, but for many Americans, they provide a stark reminder of how out of touch our political system has become.

September 01, 2012 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Doing the best with what you have

One of my mother's favorite sayings is to do the best you can with what you have at the time. She should know.

September 01, 2012 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Understanding Breeds Common Ground

Once again I find myself faced with a Column written by Mr. Carter in the Sunday, Aug. 26, edition that simply cries out for a logical response.

September 01, 2012 | William Peruguino | Columnists


Taking Exception to Exceptionalism

"American Exceptionalism" is a central theme for Mitt Romney and those who gathered this week at the Republican National Convention. For many conservatives, unwavering belief in the inherent goodness, unique character, and global superiority of the U.S. is a minimum requirement for admission to the circle of "real Americans." In their eyes, President Obama's willingness to apologize to other nations and peoples - more so than questions about his birthplace - makes him unworthy of citizenship in "Real America."

September 01, 2012 | Maurice Carter | Columnists


An opportunity denied

The phone rang the other night during dinner. We often have the news on, although that's not good for digestion. Our satellite service displays on the TV screen the entity and phone number that's calling.

August 30, 2012 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


My wisteria’s haircut

I gave my wisteria a haircut this weekend. I usually trim it about twice in the summer and then really cut it back in the fall when the leaves fall off. Every time I cut it in the summer, it gets really happy and grows at a greater speed and even flowers again.

August 28, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


Yarbrough : Skeeter Skates weighs in on Middle East situation

I was in the middle of preparing a PowerPoint presentation for you on why House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, needs a campaign war chest of $356,415.19 to run unopposed for re-election in his district. The neat part was going to be explaining the $1,000 campaign contribution from the American Kennel Club, located in New York. You will be interested to know The American Goat Association, located in Pipe Creek, Texas, did not contribute to Mr. Ralston. I think this proves beyond doubt why goats have so little influence under the Gold Dome. (When was the last ...

August 28, 2012 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Skeeter Skates weighs in on Middle East

I was in the middle of preparing a PowerPoint presentation for you on why House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, needs a campaign war chest of $356,415.19 to run unopposed for re-election in his district. The neat part was going to be explaining the $1,000 campaign contribution from the American Kennel Club, located in New York. You will be interested to know The American Goat Association, located in Pipe Creek, Texas, did not contribute to Mr. Ralston. I think this proves beyond doubt why goats have so little influence under the Gold Dome. (When was the last ...

August 28, 2012 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


My wisteria’s haircut

I gave my wisteria a haircut this weekend. I usually trim it about twice in the summer and then really cut it back in the fall when the leaves fall off. Every time I cut it in the summer, it gets really happy and grows at a greater speed and even flowers again.

The Chinese kind, which I have, is an invasive plant. It will take over the world. I have cut it out of my fig tree, which is at least 15 feet from the original plant, and from an azalea bed, which is more than 30 feet from ...

August 28, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


Why women matter this election

In politics, where there are more men than women in elected positions, it's easy to get the impression that men matter most. You see them on TV, see their pictures in the paper, hear them pontificating on the issues on TV and radio.

So it may surprise you to learn that women matter more than might be evident. Why? They outvote men.

August 25, 2012 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Romney, Obama both struggle to connect

When Republicans formally nominate Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan next week, the race against President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden will be officially underway.

Yet, while the two teams represent different ideological views, different upbringings, different faith backgrounds and different experiences, neither of them has yet inspired any confidence among voters. Just 32 percent believe the economy will be stronger in a year if Obama is re-elected. Only 36 percent think it will be stronger if Romney wins.

August 25, 2012 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Better than a thousand hollow words

Is it me, or has the 2012 Presidential campaign been going since 1912? No doubt, Republicans began plotting to unseat Barack Obama on the morning of November 5, 2008.

That's politics. But, it's 71 long days yet to next national referendum on leadership, and we're just now reaching the nominating conventions. As if the rhetoric wasn't heated enough already.

August 25, 2012 | Maurice Carter | Columnists


Robinson: Policing pregnancies

The uninvited participation of a hurricane at next week's Republican convention would be superfluous. Buffeted by powerful internal winds, the party may be flooded with cash, but it's already kind of a debris-strewn mess.

Who would have imagined that Topic A, in the days before GOP delegates gather in Tampa, would be abortion? Certainly the thought never crossed the minds of the convention planners who intended this four-day infomercial to be a nonstop indictment of President Obama's performance on the economy. But the old line about the relationship between the political parties and their candidates - "Democrats fall ...

August 25, 2012 | Eugene Robinson | Columnists


Perugino: Consensus of future not divisive warfare

On Aug. 19, Maurice Carter wrote an article entitled "Drawing a new battle line" in which he accuses Paul Ryan of supporting only individualism and fighting against collectivism for the common good. Carter goes on to say that Paul Ryan blindly follows the philosophy of Ayn Rand to the exclusion of a focus on the welfare of the U.S.

This commentary is wrong on so many fronts that I must respond to Maurice's allegations for fear of some readers being falsely influenced by the incendiary writing.

August 25, 2012 | William Peruguino | Columnists


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