Remember the story of "The Little Engine That Could?" That could well describe the city of Dalton, a town of some 34,000 nestled in the corner of Northwest Georgia not far from the Tennessee line.
When George Orwell first coined the phrase "Big Brother is watching you," he knew what he was talking about.
It has been just over two months since I wrote a column about Georgia Power, the Public Service Commission and the construction of two additional nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle. I can hear President Ronald Reagan's voice now: "There you go again."
Can it be? Is it September already? One of my favorite tunes, "September Song," was written by Kurt Weill and Maxwell Anderson for a Broadway musical in 1938 called "Knickerbocker Holiday." The lyrics could apply today to the current political season in Georgia - "For it's a long, long time from May to December, but the days grow short when you reach September."
First-world problems. You know what they are. We all have them. They're the issues confronting and irritating those of us living in wealthy, industrialized countries that would leave people in the third world either scratching their heads in bewilderment or shaking them in disgust.
There was a time when general election campaigns didn't "officially" get underway until after the Labor Day weekend.
It is a potential killer whose numbers rival the deadly Ebola virus and it doesn't get near the attention it should. Unlike the dreaded illness currently ravaging West Africa, this is one with a quick cure.
For the past 20 years, an idea frequently floated for reforming the political system has been to set term limits for elected officials.
Two weeks ago, The Times reported Robin Williams' suicide. I'm sad for a number of reasons, maybe not the same as other people's reasons but just as intense. I am sad because the world lost a gifted comedian. To quote Ella Wheeler Wilcox, who wrote "Laugh and the world laughs with you:"
Rap! Rap! Rap!
If I met Sharon Budd, I know I'd like her. She's from Uniontown, Ohio. She's raised four kids and worked as a seventh-grade language arts teacher. She's a breast cancer survivor.
There are many lessons about elections I've learned through years of reporting on politics.
Many Christians feel that removing teacher led prayer from school is persecution. This debate has come to Hall County with the letter sent by the American Humanists Association to Hall County School officials demanding that coach led prayer be stopped.
I just learned of a book called, "Say Goodbye to your Southern Accent." Gosh dang. What is wrong with a Southern accent?
Ray LaHood, who once was the federal transportation secretary for President Barack Obama, had some blunt advice for a legislative study committee trying to figure out how the state can pay for repairing its highways and bridges.
If you had told me a year ago that Gov. Nathan Deal would essentially be tied at this point in his re-election campaign with an inexperienced Democratic legislator, I would have asked if you were smoking some of that stuff that is now legally on sale in Colorado.
Anyone with a sense of history who has watched the fascinating new Ken Burns documentary on PBS, "The Roosevelts: An Intimate History," may have experienced a sense of déjà vu during episode six, which chronicles the tumultuous events of 1939-44.
I have one of the most interesting jobs in the world. One day I am advising world leaders on the nuances of international monetary policy. The next day I am consoling a distraught reader who thinks I need to "look within myself spiritually."
Over the past 10 years, Georgia has served as the location for a wide-ranging experiment in economic theory.
Until I heard her speak at a benefit luncheon, I thought Ronda Rich was a bit of an empty-headed lightweight. I was wrong, wrong, wrong, and she has become one of my must-read columnists.
The Woman Who Shares My Name instructed me that this week's column was to be about positive things. She says she is tired of bad news and thought you felt the same way.
I don't pay a lot of attention to football. Even though I was a proud Red Elephant during the heyday of Bobby Gruhn and Tommy West, I just never caught the fever. Four years at the University of Alabama during the reign of Bear Bryant did nothing to pique my interest. Since I married a man whose football apathy mirrored my own, there was never an incentive to learn or follow the game.
In our system of government where citizens elect those who will make the decisions for them, voter registration and the casting of ballots are the fundamental elements of democracy - the blocking and tackling, to use a football analogy.
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