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Oglesby: On Woods, health care, special election
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Glad as I am Tiger Woods is ready to play, it was surprising that he's not returning to competitive golf until the Masters. Most thought he needed at least one, better two, tournaments as tuneup.

Ordinarily in this light, I'd predict he wouldn't win, but history warns not to this time. Tiger is noted for drama, mental and physical toughness and intimidation, especially in uphill situations. Masters spectators are well-mannered and the grounds are tightly controlled. He won't hear many boos. I'm skeptical of his chances but not reckless enough to count him out.

It's too late for me for any residents' input to the City Council's second vote on once weekly curbside garbage pickup, but I'm with Bob Hamrick on this one. Kudos to the city manager and staff for diligence in cutting costs, and I realize up-front investment often is necessary to make significant savings. Once $400,000 plus is invested in new equipment, that money's gone, and if that new plan doesn't work out, it's lost.

My balance problem from strokes gives me trouble rolling a large can up and down my downhill driveway in rain because I can't walk with a cane, umbrella and can. I know others who could have even more difficulty in various circumstances. A good compromise would be once weekly pickup, either as now or at curbside.

I'm not surprised but am stunned in other ways that President Barack Obama's health care plan passed the House. Regulators and congressional committees would be all over financial companies if they made the claims Democrats did when the figures simply don't add up.

Some of the populist-pleasing goodies and a few truly needed measures go into effect immediately, meaning increased deficit. The tougher ones, including money to pay the bills and increased interest, come a few years later after he and Democratic congressmen are — they hope — re-elected. The last big expense is postponed until 2018 — after, if re-elected, his last term ends.

One immediate measure involving Medicaid will hit Georgia a fiscal sledgehammer blow. That means substantial added budget and service cuts or a costly state tax increase. Watch it.

Most national major polls are close in their numbers. Nearly three fourths of Americans don't think it will help them and nearly the same are totally confused by the conflict between what they know and what Democrats claim. That's why Obama hit the road, shoveling more bull, trying to protect votes bought with our tax dollars. Fewer than 50 percent of those polled approve of the bill.

As the state legislature enters the home stretch, it'll be without some members. Lee Hawkins and Tom Graves and others had to resign to enter the race to replace Nathan Deal in the special election May 11.
My guess is Hawkins and Graves will wind up in a runoff, with Max Cleland a close third or possibly replacing one of them.

We older Times survivors lost a treasured associate and a poultry industry pioneer in his own right when John Yarbrough died last week at 86. He was editor-publisher of our sister publication, The Poultry Times, for years, contributing ever so often to our editorial page, and I wrote occasionally for it.

Ted Oglesby is retired associate and opinion page editor of The Times. You can reach him at P.O. Box 663, Gainesville, GA 30503. His column appears on alternate Tuesdays.