good cartoon! another cost of our invasion of iraq based upon lies is that we have lost the moral authority when other countries (russia in this case) do the same thing. at least russia has an historical connection with crimea and its people, in addition to its largest naval base. what connection did we have with iraq--besides a lust for its oil?
for the u.s. to cite "international law" is beyond hypocritical. putin may have "lost touch with reality", but if russia stops its "annexation" at crimea, or even at the russian naval base in crimea, we should find a way to back off. russia "gave" crimea to ukraine in the first place, 60 years ago, angering the crimean people. how important is "self-determination" of and by the people, anyway?posted @ Friday, March 7, 2014 - 16:38
most progressives realize that bureaucracies, public or private, are no better than "necessary evils". so a program of government support that dispenses with a bureaucracy to "police it" generally would be a good thing. in fact, the earned income tax credit (albeit part of our tax code) shares some principles with those programs.
when i was young i considered myself a libertarian (until understanding the holes in that pseudo-philosophy), but one issue that stays with me over the intervening 50 years is the distinction between ideologically driven libertarians (who would oppose any government involvement in social welfare) and pragmatic libertarians, who simply want to minimize government interference in the private sector, to the extent reasonably possible.
it would be interesting to see what establishment republicans today (of course, now fairly right wing), if allowed to think independently, would conclude.
i'm a krugman admirer, and to the extent he recognizes what social security essentially is and of course supports it, i do, to. in fact, those who simply want to reduce government spending will actually support this anti-bureaucratic social welfare program, divorced from a bureaucracy-based means testing, whereas the "industrial policy" types will condemn it: stereotypes turned on their head.
like nixon going to china, however, i think this is an idea republicans will have to propose; democrats likely never would, for fear of the campaign ads that would be run against them.posted @ Thursday, March 6, 2014 - 15:54
legalize it and tax it--georgia will gain revenue.
criminalize it--georgia will spend revenue on prison space, etc.
among other things.
why aren't the libertarians among the republican party speaking out in full force on this issue?posted @ Monday, March 3, 2014 - 18:18
i hope the rumor about the change to a 4-3 defense is true. at the college level, a 4-3 begins with "more weight" in the front seven, 50-60 pounds, which should help against power running teams like alabama.posted @ Monday, March 3, 2014 - 18:13
thanks for running this editorial, especially in the same issue as the article about snake handlers.
what do georgia republicans--at least this georgia republican--have in common with snake handlers? blind faith and ignorance. plus, they not only create damage for themselves, they harm their children as well.
here's hoping enough rational republican voters read spencer's piece and realize how asinine and cruel his "policy" proposal is.
remember, in view of repubs' lock-step voting mandates (witness most recently what happened in arizona), a vote for any republican is a vote for this guy: he obviously doesn't want working class georgians and their children to have the same health care that he has--or to have georgia hospitals get paid for the indigent care they provide. he might as well be asking for everyone to be handling poisonous snakes.
and, jim, if you can get sen. candidate paul broun to write an op-ed piece for abh, please do it--republican office holders should be the voters' "best teachers".posted @ Friday, February 28, 2014 - 16:06
study after study reveals that handgun ownership winds up killing or wounding far more friends and family members (whether by negligence, momentary anger, or suicide) than it protects. a shotgun should give homeowners all the protection they need.
even the marshall of 19th century tombstone, arizona knew enough to enforce a law requiring people to leave their guns outside of town. i wonder if anyone challenged him, citing second amendment rights.
this is just another example of ideology without thought triumphing over common sense. and of course the ideology is fed by the weapons industry, whose sales increased by 30% last year.
i'd think our wonderful and fearless legislators had more integrity if they specifically authorized, as a permitted place, handgun possession in the state capitol building. why don't they? don't they trust the citizens?posted @ Tuesday, February 25, 2014 - 16:29
the two issues confronting us that should be non-partisan (and no-brainers) are increasing the minimum wage and expanding medicaid. both would not only help individuals directly but help the economy by putting more money into local economies (increasing demand for goods and services).
because local hospitals and other providers would get paid for providing indigent health care, and those payments would circulate through the economy and defray local taxes, ultimately expanding medicaid would "pay for itself".
but, even though individual voters in both parties support both ideas (when framed in objective, non-prejudicial terms), republican party leadership opposes both. why?
the answer is: ideology. when too much ideology controls governing, and thinking, our officials will not objectively review the pros and cons of potential legislation.
why the ideology? unfortunately, the answer seems to be a combination of greedy billionaires with too much money to spend and conservative talk radio that tells listeners (and therefore elected officials) what they should believe.
both decisions constitute the kind of stimulus program (minimum wage would not involve direct government spending) that would increase jobs. as i said, these ideas, at this time, should be "no-brainers" supported by everyone.posted @ Tuesday, February 25, 2014 - 16:17
i give sam moore "credit" for being honest. i suspect he is the product of the current version of the republican party--especially its libertarian wing--and that many of his supporters privately agree with absurd views like this one--this proposal is no more daft than some of the gun proposals we see regularly.
moore's surprise that the media might be interested in legislation he proposes--of course is laughable, but . . . what is not funny is the media's failure to explain to the public the impact of many other pieces of legislation that is being proposed and enacted, albeit in a more "subtle" form.
actually, moore reminds me most of current members of congress from texas--and of the republican candidates for u.s. senate from georgia. we have a continuing clown show, and we have to rely upon an objective media to point that out.posted @ Tuesday, February 25, 2014 - 15:57
the confederate battle flag may represent "southern heritage" to some. but to many others, it represents what is being portrayed in the very powerful film, "twelve years a slave".
so, the question is: exactly what does "southern heritage" mean? i remember asking my grandparents (born and landowners in south and north carolina, respectively, whose families lived there for over 200 years) that question, or something close to it, on many occasions as i was growing up. they never could answer the question, referring merely to, maybe, their respective families.
the "confederacy", itself, they both said, meant "secession" or "separation" from the union, and was dead and gone, except in the minds of a declining number of people who lived in the past. these conversations occurred in the 1950's and '60's.posted @ Thursday, February 20, 2014 - 15:26
we voters should demand that every legislator who initiates plainly unconstitutional legislation--which when challenged will result in attorneys' fees owed to the challenger--should be personally liable to pay those attorneys' fees.
ignorance should have a price.posted @ Tuesday, February 18, 2014 - 14:13
before our "legislators" loosen gun carry laws even more, they should specifically permit guns in the capitol building and governor's office. rather there than bars, etc. i'm surprised we haven't heard from the nra on this issue.posted @ Tuesday, February 18, 2014 - 14:09
why does abh publish purcell's columns? they add nothing and usually are not funny, just misleading. of course, i ask the same thing about many of the syndicated columns abh publishes.posted @ Thursday, February 13, 2014 - 13:40
"the media has been in the bag for obama". another false right wing talking point. i assume you watch fox news and listen to talk radio, including our local fox radio outlet. have they "been in the bag" for obama? how about morris newspapers?
fox news is the republican network. roger ailes is its guru. talk radio specializes in "the big lie" and is directing republican members of congress to go along with and repeat those lies as "policy". never mind that among their goals is to destroy public education and to make taxes (especially georgia income taxes) as regressive as possible, favoring the financially well-off.
when we look at the wire service stuff the abh publishes, it's virtually all right wing nonsense if it has any political content. i've occasionally taken peeks at other morris newspapers--in augusta and savannah, for example, and they are far worse. if "objectivity" were a goal, fifth graders would do a better job.
seriously, do readers of abh have any idea what the cbo report actually said and what it's implications are? do they care? are they aware how regressive georgia's tax system is and how destructive republicans have been toward public schools? do conservative retired republicans really get upset about obamacare taking away their madicare? right wing talking points are creating an increasingly large pool of angry white (mostly) men (mostly) who are dangerously unaware of reality.posted @ Monday, February 10, 2014 - 16:21
once again, conservative crackpots reveal themselves to be ignorant idiots. we need more republican public officials to start shouting, out loud, to their supporters: we want to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony. an ideal maybe, but worth repeating.posted @ Thursday, February 6, 2014 - 16:09
the lyndon house is a municipal treasure. my two kids benefitted greatly from classes they took there as children, which, as they frequently mention, positively influenced their growth and future in the arts.
to suggest we should not simply "trust" our bureaucracy to preserve the lyndon house is an understatement. i agree with jim's sentiment: we should remain vigilant and in communication with our elected officials. short-term revenue enhancing "fixes" could easily destroy the lyndon house.
on the other hand, there may well be ways to increase pubic use of the facility without undermining its primary purpose of being a community arts center. so, we really do need to hear from the mayor and commission on this, long before any changes are planned.posted @ Thursday, February 6, 2014 - 16:04
deal is not only "wrong" on denying medicaid expansion in georgia, he is overtly harming georgia taxpayers and hospitals (as well as those individuals, including children, being denied health insurance).
what is the source of this obviously irrational and destructive decision? ideology and lock-step conformity to oppose anything/everything related to obama and obamacare.
we can't afford ideologues and the spineless in public service. gov. deal should stand up to republican "leadership" and the real party leaders--conservative talk show hosts and fox news--and serve the state of georgia as he took an oath to do.posted @ Thursday, February 6, 2014 - 15:56
some have said that the republican "health care policy" is: "don't get sick. if you do, die quickly".
i assume those uninsured obama haters who rage about obamacare (even those on medicare) will therefore not purchase health insurance on the obamacare exchanges and will therefore be more likely to "die quickly" (or go bankrupt).
five years from now, when results are in, i suspect that surviving republicans who have not bought insurance through obamacare will react as the republicans in massachusetts have to "romneycare": they will be thankful for the opportunity to get the insurance and oppose any effort to eliminate it.posted @ Tuesday, February 4, 2014 - 16:08
i agree with a comment above.
after reading the words, "according to a fox news report", i stopped reading.
fox news is not a "news station". people watching fox news do not do so to obtain an objective version of news. might as well cite "red state".
as far as anyone can tell (although not enough voice this view), the persons mainly responsible for the benghazi tragedy were the libyan radicals who conducted the attack and killings and, probably, the ambassador who believed the embassy didn't need more military security and died for his erroneous belief.
the republicans' efforts to turn this tragedy into a political football is unworthy (but typical), driven by their hatred of obama and fear of hillary.posted @ Tuesday, February 4, 2014 - 15:56
" . . . unless your own sense of self is a death grip." for the republicans, it is.
what dupuy is describing is, among other things, "group paranoia," "mass hysteria", etc. why do most iranians and north koreans believe the u.s. is still "the great satan"? they live inside an echo chamber. so do republicans.
the latest buzzwords, as dupuy describes, are "imperial presidency", dictator, etc.--based upon obama's use of executive orders, which he has done fewer times than any president in history (but should have been doing much more often, beginning four years ago). in short, republican "reality" is a fantasy.
the problem is that living in such a fantasyland can damage the entire country and us with it--as with the refusal during a private-sector induced recession to properly stimulate the economy and the belief that "government can't create jobs".posted @ Tuesday, February 4, 2014 - 15:46
"evidence contradicts christie", the caption says. what else is new?
but is that "evidence", or "republican evidence"? these days, the majority of assertions of "fact" coming from republican politicians have emanated from their separate universe--you know, "from the pits of hell" or some such place.posted @ Saturday, February 1, 2014 - 15:39
i hope the mayor and commission prevent non-arts bureaucrats from making decisions involving the lyndon house--which is a local treasure.
arts leaders should make better known how the lyndon house, now and historically, provides multiple services to the entire community.
i remember each of our two children--going back to the 1980's--benefitted greatly from educational/classroom experiences at the lyndon house--experiences which 30 years later remain with them and inspire them.posted @ Saturday, February 1, 2014 - 15:35
well, i tend to agree with the sentiments of the letter writer (but not, of course, his "facts").
he's making a good case for expanding medicare and medicaid, so that we have true, fairly simple, health care for all (like the vast majority of western democracies). "obamacare" essentially is based upon republican "market" policy--a bad idea for health insurance.
and, oh, his claim not to have heard of anyone having benefited from obamacare--he'll need to stop listening to rush and fox news. millions have benefitted already. but more would benefit from universal medicare.posted @ Thursday, January 30, 2014 - 14:57
it will be interesting to see how the republican primary debates, etc., affect voter opinion. those who say they support paul broun--do they really "know" him?
as the repub candidates push each other to sound loonier and loonier and more extreme--especially with respect to women's health issues--i'd be surprised if the repub vote totals don't begin to decline. preferring a generic republican is one thing; voting for a specific repub candidate is something else.
we'll all be reminded of the 2012 repub clown show among presidential candidates.posted @ Thursday, January 30, 2014 - 14:47
hey, maybe our good congressman has filled up all his wall space with animal heads and doesn't need an extra weapon anymore. or, maybe he's replaced it with something else.
so, do we georgians take pride in our republican senate candidates? do we make it a race between georgia and texas to see who gets the most laughs on late-night tv?
anyway, al, good letter.posted @ Wednesday, January 29, 2014 - 13:49
remember the republican presidential primary campaign from two years ago: the seven (or eight) stooges? gave us all a comedy break.
georgia's republican senate primary looks likely to match it. we'll see how many voters have a sense of humor. "how low will they go?"
i suspect we'll get some national media attention.posted @ Monday, January 27, 2014 - 16:00
Summary: Fun facts: The first-ever Oscar ceremony, held in 1929, ran a brisk 15 minutes. By contrast, the longest was in 2002, clocking in at a monstrous 4 hours and change. As usual, there are things I loved about it and things I didn't. Rather than be snarky or complain, I'll offer a few suggestions on how the organizers might bring the show into the 21st century. Fun facts: The first-ever Oscar ceremony, held in 1929, ran a brisk 15 minutes. By contrast, the longest was in 2002, clocking in at a monstrous 4 hours and change. As usual, there are things I loved about it and things I didn't. Rather than be snarky or complain, I'll offer a few suggestions on how the organizers might bring the show into the 21st century. First, a few thoughts on the winners: read more
Athens-Clarke County police officers responded to Pinewood Estates North on a 911 call concerning a heated domestic dispute. it reportedly was an argument over the lack of heat and food in a family's trailer and a woman was threatening to stab anyone who tried to take away her 7-month-old child. State patrol responded also, from their post nearby on U.S. Highway 29 North. The situation apparently was resolved. An officer reported he was driving the woman and infant to another home in Athens. read more