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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
Once upon a time there was a silver-tongued president. His foreign policy must have been seen by enemies of the United States as weak and feckless, because these enemies became emboldened. Mideast terrorists staged a brutal, bloody attack in which innocent Americans were killed. The president's response could be seen as a display of shameful weakness rather than steely resolve.
A U.S. ambassador is the legal representative of the President of the United States to that foreign country and the land on which the U.S. Embassy resides is considered U.S. territory. The murder of U.S. ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, and an armed attack on a U.S. Embassy are both unequivocal acts of war. I am bewildered and upset by the response from the President and the State Department. The president delivered a weak response with a reference to U.S. respect for other religious beliefs without taking a strong position of power to provide ...
A small drinking glass sits on a smooth, damp rock, filled to the midpoint with water. With a friend, you examine the glass and debate: is it half empty or half full?
Last week a friend and I were in Athens on business and decided to stay for dinner. We invited her nephew and friends to join us. We had no expectations other than a few students enjoying a free meal. We were impressed with a diverse group of young adults providing us with interesting conversation that turned into a delightful evening.
May the God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ be blessed! He is the compassionate father and God of all comfort. He's the one who comforts us in all our trouble so that we can comfort other people who are in every kind of trouble.
Rep. Edward Lindsey, R-Atlanta, majority whip of the Georgia House of Representatives asked me if I would talk to the proponents of the upcoming constitutional amendment on charter schools and get their side of the story. This was after Mr. Lindsey and I had publicly crossed swords over the issue.
When my sister and I travel, we go on our own in the U.S., but overseas, we like someone to meet us at the airport and give us a short half-day tour and then leave us alone to do our own thing.
I'm just a soul whose intentions are good. Oh Lord, please don't let me be misunderstood.
Judging by the party conventions, you'd wonder why this election is even close.
The question this fall is clear: Do we want a president who cares for others but is not competent or a president who might care, if he could just show it, but has proved his competence?
Mercifully, the political conventions have ended.
This year, as we know, is defined by the presidential campaign: the nomination battles of the Republican party; the relentless attack ads in which both sides writhe in the mud and facts are road kill; memory and attention spans are three beats long; the blustery political conventions; the carefully staged speeches; and finally the face-off on November 6th, after which pundits of both stripes predict the end of the world as we know it if their candidate loses. Not a few Republicans believe Obama, if re-elected, is going to turn this sovereign nation over to the control of the United ...
I got called a "liberal" the other day by a reader in Cherokee County who doesn't think much of my opinions and suggested "Someone should retire his word processor." My word processor Barney, was elated at the thought. Barney hates this job. When I brought Barney home, it was with the promise that he and I would create poetry. I was afraid to tell him the truth about writing snarky columns because I figured he might rip out his hard drive and die in a high-tech version of Hari-Kari. Instead, Barney shows his displeasure by going on strike about ...
I had a perfectly wonderful Labor Day. In fact, I told my husband's brother and his son as they were leaving that I believed Labor Day might be my favorite holiday.
We went to what I call my husband's cabin. It is a small place off the beaten path and on a pond. My husband loves it there. It's peaceful and quiet. All my children and grandchildren were there, and I got to enjoy being with just my family without the other distractions that often go with other holidays.
Hey, kids! Last week I wrote about the art of arguing, but I used some Latin terms and talked about the decline of society, so you probably assumed it was "old people advice." Well, it was. How about if I use this column just for you? How would you like a few tricks to use when arguing with adults?