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Archive By Section - OPINION


Lawmakers have a shot at redemption

The General Assembly is taking some heat in the media this year for having one of its least productive sessions ever, in terms of addressing issues that really affect the lives of Georgians. Legislators still have one last shot at redeeming themselves in the closing days, however.

As last week came to a close, there was actually some progress made on two of those vital issues: the state's traffic congestion dilemma and the upgrading of Georgia's woeful network of trauma care facilities.

April 01, 2009 | By Tom Crawford Columnist | OPINION


The magic at 40

Last Friday one of our local icons of science education, a fellow by the name of Jim Honeycutt, dropped in on classes at Eastside High School. Jim's columns on astronomy occasionally grace the pages of this paper, as he follows a – no pun intended – stellar career in the public schools by teaching astronomy at Oxford College of Emory University.

March 28, 2009 | Nat Harwell | OPINION


Waiting for Sam and Roy

Sam Olens might be hard to beat for governor next year, if he had a $10 million-plus campaign war chest and established statewide fame.

March 28, 2009 | Bill Shipp | OPINION


I’m a glass half full kind of guy

In my everyday job, I write about business and state politics.

Those are generally not fun areas on which to write. It seems like every story now is about some sort of downward trend. Revenues are less, businesses are closing and folks are losing jobs.

March 27, 2009 | Harris Blackwood | OPINION


The Legislative Responsibility Act

Senator Christopher Dodd inserted an amendment in legislation that enabled the now infamous AIG bonuses.

When asked about it on national TV, he simply lied about it. He denied having anything to do with it. The very next day he admitted to the same reporter that he had inserted the language.

March 27, 2009 | Patrick Durusau | OPINION


Tax cuts, now where are the jobs?

Georgia's lawmakers have always been willing to approve tax breaks for the state's business leaders and special interests, but they have really stepped on the gas since Republicans took control of the House and Senate four years ago.

In that first year of Republican control, legislators passed a huge break for corporations: a bill that would give them tax reductions totaling nearly $1 billion over a 10-year period.

March 25, 2009 | By Tom Crawford Columnist | OPINION


What really counts

A sincere plea to Sonny and Romeo: Please don't embarrass Georgia again.

I can see what you're up to. You're already shuffling the political deck so you can play the race card in the next election. Don't do it. We've been hurt enough.

March 25, 2009 | Bill Shipp | OPINION


Out of Africa

A parent's worst nightmare came out of Africa last week with the news that a 24-year-old Peace Corps volunteer, Cathrine "Kate" Puzey, had been murdered. Formerly of Cumming, Kate received a sociology degree from William and Mary in 2006, joined the Peace Corps and had been teaching English in a small village in Benin since July 2007. Her two-year hitch in West Africa was almost up.

March 22, 2009 | Nat Harwell | OPINION


Barnes sounds more like a candidate

Over the past year or so, there has been one question about politics that I hear more often than any other: "Is Roy going to run?"

March 22, 2009 | By Tom Crawford | OPINION


Looking like celebrities not all it's cracked up to be

When somebody thinks you're somebody that you're not, it can either be really good or really bad.

I have years of experience in this field. In 1970, I had gone to visit an aunt in Jacksonville, Fla.

March 20, 2009 | Harris Blackwood | OPINION


Crescendo of legislating

Last week saw our first crescendo of legislating, as we passed the crossover mark of the session. We worked through 112 bills and resolutions. For the next few weeks, we'll be reviewing bills sent over from the Senate as we approach the end of the session.

A number of the measures we considered are worth mention. HB 23 would prohibit provisional driver's license holders under 18 from using cell phones and similar electronic communications devices. Young drivers generally don't have sufficiently solid driving skills to handle a car at the same time as talking on a phone ...

March 20, 2009 | By Doug Holt State Representative | OPINION


Crossover day passes

The legislature reached a significant landmark in the 2009 session on March 12, which was the 30th legislative day. That means that it was the turning point for all Senate legislation to be passed and transferred to the House in order to continue through the legislative process. Likewise, members of the House of Representatives worked diligently to send their legislation to the Senate for a chance at final passage. Several important pieces of legislation were voted on this week, but perhaps most significant was the FY 2009 supplemental budget.

Thanks to a cooperative spirit between both the Senate and House ...

March 18, 2009 | By Sen. John Douglas Columnist | OPINION


Flowers seem to grow on you

Why is it the older you get the more you begin to notice things you really never paid much attention to before? Simple things. Quiet things. Natural things.

It's been that way for me, for instance, with flowers. When I was growing up in Moreland, my Aunt Jessie's yard was the flower capital of the county. People drove from as far away as Grantville, Corinth and Smith City to gaze at the color show Aunt Jessie's yard put on each spring.

March 18, 2009 | Lewis Grizzard | OPINION


We’re rolling down a bumpy road

There is less than a month to go before the legislative session adjourns and our lawmakers don't appear to be any closer than they were last year at this time to resolving the state's highway congestion issues.

March 14, 2009 | Tom Crawford Columnist | OPINION


I’m so excited

Hey, I'm excited! Have you heard of three fantastic things happening right here in our neck of the woods? They have such potential for improving life that if you'd tried a month ago to tell me they could happen here, I'd have called you a liar.

March 14, 2009 | Nat Harwell | OPINION


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