The blog.

24
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 24, 2015

The only major battle on Sherman’s March to the Sea occurred at Griswoldsville on November 22, 1864; on the same day, federal troops marched into Milledgeville.

Milledgeville-Old-Governor-Mansion-3

On November 23, 1864, Sherman himself entered Milledgeville, where he used the Governor’s Mansion as his headquarters. Sherman’s forces left the capitol city on November 24th.

President John F. Kennedy became the fourth President of the United States to be assassinated in office on November 22, 1963. The next day, Jack Ruby shot Lee Harvey Oswald, who had been arrested for shooting Kennedy.

Construction on the Georgia Dome began on November 24, 1989.

On November 24, 1992, Republican Paul D. Coverdell defeated Democratic incumbent Wyche Fowler in the runoff election for United States Senate. We are thankful that Georgia has runoff elections, not something silly like drawing straws or instant runoff voting.

Paul_D.Coverdell

Gratitude

A reader shared with us yesterday his gratitude for the chance to spend some time with some of our veterans. With his permission, here’s what he wrote:

I sing barbershop harmony, and this past Saturday, I rallied three other guys and we sang for the good folks at the Trinka Davis VA facility in Carrollton.  All I can say is “Wow!”  Very honoring and humbling to be able to sing for these folks – residents and staff alike.  The Patriot Guard Riders host an ice cream social each month, and we plugged in through my contact with PGR (another story for another time).

Grateful!  But the most amazing thing is how awesome that Trinka Davis veterans village is.  One of the eldest and more recent residents, has a book coming out telling the story of this VA facility.  As a servant to these veterans this past weekend, I am grateful on two levels: 1) for these fine folks who gave every measure; and 2) for the VA (and particularly the late Trinka Davis) in providing such a powerful example of a model VA facility.  Very cool, and mostly very honoring.  Check it out if you get the chance.  And search out George Woodruff’s book: “Just Before TAPS” due out in December.

A tip of the hat to Dennis Brannon for sending us that tidbit, and our deepest thanks to all our veterans and for those who kept the home fires burning so they could serve us.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

The Donald J. Trump campaign sent out a message that Trump will be returning to Georgia soon. Not included in the message was the rumored Continue Reading..

23
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 23, 2015

On the Presidential campaign trail, Franklin Delano Roosevelt arrived in Atlanta on October 23, 1932, speaking to 10,000, and continued on to his “second home” at Warm Springs, Georgia.

smFDR Atlanta 1932

FDR campaigning in Atlanta and Georgia in 1932.

FDR Georgia

When he arrived at Warm Springs, FDR gave a short speech:

“Two more weeks to go. . . . First, let me say this: this old hat, a lot of you people have seen it before. It’s the same hat. But I don’t think it is going to last much longer after the 8th of November. I have a superstition about hats in campaigns, and I am going to wear it until midnight of the 8th of November. . . . Well, it’s fine to see, and I’m looking forward to coming down here for the usual Thanksgiving party at Warm Springs, and having a real old-fashioned Thanksgiving with my neighbors again. I thank you!”

On October 23, 1971, the Coca-Cola Company launched the advertising campaign “I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing.”

Georgia-born Clarence Thomas was sworn in as an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court on October 23, 1991.

Gratitude

I’m grateful to all of you who take a few minutes out of your day to look at the dogs read about Georgia politics. My sincerest personal thanks. Here are the two best things I read this weekend. From Arthur C. Brooks at the American Enterprise Institute, via the Wall Street Journal.

For many people, gratitude is difficult, because life is difficult. Even beyond deprivation and depression, there are many ordinary circumstances in which gratitude doesn’t come easily. This point will elicit a knowing, mirthless chuckle from readers whose Thanksgiving dinners are usually ruined by a drunk uncle who always needs to share his political views. Thanks for nothing.

Beyond rotten circumstances, some people are just naturally more grateful than others. A 2014 article in the journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience identified a variation in a gene (CD38) associated with gratitude. Some people simply have a heightened genetic tendency to experience, in the researchers’ words, “global relationship satisfaction, perceived partner responsiveness and positive emotions (particularly love).” That is, those relentlessly positive people you know who seem grateful all the time may simply be mutants.

But we are more than slaves to our feelings, circumstances and genes. Evidence suggests that we can actively choose to practice gratitude — and that doing so raises our happiness.

This is not just self-improvement hokum. For example, researchers in one 2003 study randomly assigned one group of study participants to keep a short weekly list of the things they were grateful for, while other groups listed hassles or neutral events. Ten weeks later, the first group enjoyed significantly greater life satisfaction than the others. Other studies have shown the same pattern and lead to the same conclusion. If you want a truly happy holiday, choose to keep the “thanks” in Thanksgiving, whether you feel like it or not.

One explanation is that acting happy, regardless of feelings, coaxes one’s brain into processing positive emotions. In one famous 1993 experiment, researchers asked human subjects to smile forcibly for 20 seconds while tensing facial muscles, notably the muscles around the eyes called the orbicularis oculi (which create “crow’s feet”). They found that this action stimulated brain activity associated with positive emotions.

According to research published in the journal Cerebral Cortex, gratitude stimulates the hypothalamus (a key part of the brain that regulates stress) and the ventral tegmental area (part of our “reward circuitry” that produces the sensation of pleasure). It’s science, but also common sense: Choosing to focus on good things makes you feel better than focusing on bad things.

In my lifelong struggle with depression, one of the best tools I’ve found is the practice of acting as though I’m happy. Others call this, “fake it till you make it.” Even when I don’t fell like getting off the couch and doing something, if I just go take the dog for a walk, I know that helps. Repeat that every day, and before I know it, I’m feeling better.

Rick Jackson, CEO of Jackson Healthcare, has made quite a splash in Georgia Republican politics, but I, and likely many others, didn’t know much about him. Jennifer Brett of the AJC has written a great profile about the man behind the money that is shaping Georgia politics.Continue Reading..

23
Nov

Adoptable Georgia Dogs for November 23, 2015

bistre

Bistre is a young female brindle Boxer puppy who is available for adoption from the Dolly Goodpuppy Society in Barnesville, GA.

Khaki

Khaki is a young male Boxer puppy who is available for adoption from the Dolly Goodpuppy Society in Barnesville, GA.

Sepia

Sepia is a young female Boxer puppy who is available for adoption from the Dolly Goodpuppy Society in Barnesville, GA.

Sepia is a beautiful little girl, playful and happy. She loves playing with her sibling Khaki. Jumping in grass and leave is the best.

RosiePosie

Rosie Posie is an adult female Chihuahua and Dachshund mix who is available for adoption from the Dolly Goodpuppy Society in Barnesville, GA.

Rosie loves to snuggle and give kisses. Sugar sweet and petite, what’s not to like about Rosie? She seems to love everyone including children. But she is no couch potato. This little girl likes to run and play. She is very athletic and would probably enjoy learning a few tricks. Rosie is waiting to meet you at our kennel. Please email [email protected] to make an appointment to meet Rosie. She is spayed, up to date on shots and has a microchip. Fee $150

20
Nov

Adoptable Georgia Dogs for November 20, 2015

Bert Ernie

Bert and Ernie are a sweet pair of bonded Hound/Lab mix puppies who were found dumped and starving at a construction site in East Atlanta. To foster or adopt these boys, contact A Welcome Home Animal Rescue in Atlanta, GA.

Sparky

Sparky is a young male Hound mix boy who is available for adoption from the Atlanta Humane Society in Atlanta, GA.

Spunky Sparky “sings” until he gets your attention and howls all the way to the play yard as if to announce to the world how happy he is that he got his wish. Once outdoors though, he settles down quietly to the business of exploring. With his graceful run and his enthusiastic attempts at playing fetch, he is a joy to behold. Sparky lived with a family before he arrived at Atlanta Humane, so we know that he gets along with other dogs and children.

Because he is so “chatty”, he probably won’t do well in an apartment, but he has been a fine student in Atlanta Humane’s Paws to Teach program. He would excel even more if he had a home with a yard to romp around in and a family to shower him with attention. Wont you come visit him at Howell Mill today? That forlorn sound you hear in the distance? Thats Sparky calling your name. He is also an UNDERDOG, which means that he has been here longer than 30 days, so his adoption fee is reduced!!

Viva

Viva is a 10-month old female Hound dog who is available for adoption from DeKalb County Animal Services in Decatur, GA.

Viva is as gentle and sweet as they come. The moment she meets you her eyes light up and her tails starts wagging. Viva seems to be a low key girl who would enjoy a comfy bed and humans to shower with love and affection daily. Viva is great with other dogs and probably wouldn’t mind having a canine companion in her new home. Viva is an awesome dog. We know you will fall in love the second you meet her here at Lifeline’s DeKalb Animal Services. Her adoption includes his spay, microchip, vaccinations, and more! For more information email [email protected]

This month at DeKalb and Fulton County Animal Services, all dogs weighing more than 25 pounds and all cats are available for adoption at reduced fees. The cost of $47.50 to adopt is a fantastic bargain compared to the cost of spay/neuter, microchip and vaccinations.

Rudy

Rudy is an old soul, a 5-year old Hound dog who is available for adoption from DeKalb County Animal Services in Decatur, GA.

Rudy is an older gentlemen that is looking for a place to retire. He is a super friendly guy that loves everyone he meets. He has definitely passed his puppy stage and is ready to find a laid back home where he can rest his paws.

20
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 20, 2015

New Jersey became the first state to ratify the Bill of Rights on November 20, 1789.

Franklin D. Roosevelt visited Warm Springs, Georgia for the 22d time on November 20, 1931.

Duane Allman was born in Nashville, Tennessee on November 20, 1946.

President John F. Kennedy lifted the naval blockade of Cuba on November 20, 1962, ending the Cuban Missile Crisis.

On November 20, 1975, Ronald Reagan announced he would run for President of the United States against incumbent Republican Gerald Ford. On May 4, 1976, Reagan won Georgia’s Presidential Primary with 68% over Ford.

Newt Gingrich was reelected Speaker of the House on November 20, 1996.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

The calls have begun for Secretary of State Brian Kemp to resign after news broke of a massive data disclosure from the Elections Division, but I’m not really that worried about my identity being stolen. Here’s why:Continue Reading..

19
Nov

Adoptable Georgia Dogs for November 19, 2015

Abe Lincoln dog

Abe Lincoln is a 14-pound senior male Dachshund who is available for adoption from Friends To The Forlorn Pitbull Rescue Inc. in Dallas, GA.

Abe Lincoln was found as a stray on 4/23/15. He was stuck in a drain pipe on White Street (West End) in Atlanta, GA 30310. He had on a leather collar but no tags and no microchip. No one ever came for him at Fulton County Animal Control and due to his poor condition he needed to get out of there ASAP so Friends To The Forlorn rescued him.

His original name when animal control took him in was Timmy. We were told that he was thin and about 5 years old. We changed his name to Abe Lincoln because he is our old little man. We are not sure exactly how old this sweet boy is but most likely about 10 years old. He has limited hearing and limited vision. He was 13 1/2 pounds when we took him in and is severely underweight. He has arthritis in his back legs too.

Abe Lincoln could also be named Guilliver for Gulliver’s Travels because this boy loves to trot around! It doesn’t matter if he is doing laps inside the home, on a leash or in a fenced in yard – he loves to be moving! He enjoys climbing up your leg for lovin’, curling up in a crate for a nap, getting treats, going for walks, giving kisses while in your lap and looking out the window on car rides! Don’t let his age scare you – he has a lot of pep in his step!

Anabelle Bones

Anabelle Bones is a beautiful female Greyhound who was in a prison training program and is released and ready to go to a permanent home. She is available for adoption from Second Chance Greyhounds in Douglasville, GA.

Abe_puppies

Abe is one of a litter of Chiweenie – Chihuahua/Dachshund mix puppies, who is about 7 months old and available for adoption from TenderHeart & Great Pyr Rescue in Newnan, GA.

Abe is a love-bug. He loves to run and play, then crashes in your lap. His adoption fee includes his neuter, microchip, and vaccines.

Babe

Babe is a sweet girl, an adult female Pointer/Spaniel mix who is available for adoption from Warner Robins Animal Control in Warner Robins, GA.

19
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 19, 2015

Georgia and American History
Lincolnatgettysburg

President Abraham Lincoln delivered an 87-word speech at the dedication of the Soldiers’ National Cemetery at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on November 19, 1863.

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate, we can not consecrate, we can not hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

On November 19, 1864, as Sherman marched toward Savannah, the Georgia delegation to the Confederate Congress in Richmond, Virginia, sent a message to the state,

“Let every man fly to arms! Remove your negroes, horses, cattle, and provisions from Sherman’s army, and burn what you cannot carry. Burn all bridges and block up the roads in his route. Assail the invader in front, flank, and rear, by night and by day. Let him have no rest.”

The first issue of National Review magazine was published on November 19, 1955.

Reagan Gorbachev 11191985

President Ronald Reagan met for the first time with Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev on November 19, 1985.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns & Elections

Yesterday, the AJC ran a story about a lawsuit filed over an inadvertent release by the Georgia Secretary of State’s office of personal identifying information for 6.1 million registered voters. The information included Social Security Numbers and Drivers License numbers as well as the usual voter registration data.

Two Georgia women have filed a class action lawsuit alleging a massive data breach by Secretary of State Brian Kemp involving the Social Security numbers and other private information of more than six million voters statewide.

The suit, filed Tuesday in Fulton County Superior Court, alleges Kemp’s office released the information including personal identifying information to the media, political parties and other paying subscribers who legally buy voter information from the state.

In response, Kemp’s office blamed a “clerical error” and said Wednesday afternoon that they did not consider it to be a breach of its system. It said 12 organizations, including statewide political parties, news media organizations and Georgia GunOwner Magazine, received the file.

Continue Reading..

18
Nov

Secretary of State Brian Kemp on voter data release

Statement from SOS Kempclick here for .pdf

STATEMENT FROM SECRETARY OF STATE

Georgia’s voter registration system was not breached. The system has been and remains secure. This was a clerical error that has been remedied.

“Our office shares voter registration data every month with news media and political parties that have requested it as required by Georgia law. Due to a clerical error where information was put in the wrong file, 12 recipients received a disc that contained personal identifying information that should not have been included. This violated the policies that I put in place to protect voters personal information. My office undertook immediate corrective action, including contacting each recipient to retrieve the disc, and I have taken additional administrative action within the agency to deal with the error,” said Secretary of State Brian Kemp.

Pursuant to O.C.G.A § 50-18-72(a)(20)(A), personal identifying information cannot be withheld from news media when they verify they are using the information for news purposes. Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 21-2-225(c), no person that receives this data may use it for any commercial purposes.

Letter from SOS Kemp to County Voter Registrarsclick here for .pdf:

Dear Georgia Voters:

On Friday, November 13, my office learned that voters’ personal information was inadvertently included on a statewide voter file that was sent to twelve groups on October 13.

As a standard practice, these twelve groups, comprised of Georgia’s news media and political parties, receive a computer disc with an updated list of all of Georgia’s registered voters every month. This information is available to them per existing Georgia law.

However, in October, a clerical error in the IT Division led to these discs containing personal identifying information that should not have been included. The IT employee has been terminated for breaking internal rules governing the release of this information.

Upon learning of this mistake, my office took immediate action to retrieve the discs and to confirm that the recipients had not copied or otherwise disseminated the data.

All twelve discs have been accounted for. Each recipient, including the Georgia Republican Party and the Georgia Democratic Party, has confirmed that the data was not retained or diseminated to any outside parties.

To reiterate, the Georgia Voter Registration System was not breached. The system has been and remains secure, and I am confident no voter’s personal information has been compromised.

I want to assure Georgia’s citizens that it is my top priority to protect their personal information. I have put in place additional safeguards to ensure this situation does not happen again.

Sincerely,

/s./

Brian P. Kemp

18
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 18, 2015

Abraham Lincoln traveled to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on November 18, 1863.

Carl Vinson was born on November 18, 1883 in Baldwin County, Georgia. At noon on that day, U.S. and Canadian railroads implemented four time zones for the first time.

Efficient rail transportation demanded a more uniform time-keeping system. Rather than turning to the federal governments of the United States and Canada to create a North American system of time zones, the powerful railroad companies took it upon themselves to create a new time code system. The companies agreed to divide the continent into four time zones; the dividing lines adopted were very close to the ones we still use today.

Most Americans and Canadians quickly embraced their new time zones, since railroads were often their lifeblood and main link with the rest of the world. However, it was not until 1918 that Congress officially adopted the railroad time zones and put them under the supervision of the Interstate Commerce Commission.

Mickey Mouse debuted in a black-and-white film called “Steamboat Willie” on November 18, 1928.

On November 18, 1933, Franklin D. Roosevelt traveled from Washington, DC to Savannah, Georgia by train for Georgia’s Bicentennial and delivered a speech at Municipal Stadium.

Carl Vinson was honored on his 81st birthday in Milledgeville, Georgia on November 18, 1964; Vinson did not run for reelection in 1964 and retired after 50 years in office.

President Richard M. Nixon flew into Robins Air Force Base for Carl Vinson’s 90th birthday on November 18, 1973; on the trip he announced the next American nuclear supercarrier would be named USS Carl Vinson.

On November 18, 1989, Pennsylvania Governor Bob Casey signed the Abortion Control Act, the first abortion restrictions enacted after Roe v. Wade.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal quit his presidential campaign. I’d forgotten he was still running.

The Weekly Standard dives into the weeds of Alabama’s presidential primary process and sees an enthusiasm gap for Jeb Bush.

With less than four months to go before the state’s primary, the Bush campaign has declared, committed delegates for just 29 of 47 available spots—a sign the former Florida governor may be lagging in organization and enthusiasm in the Yellowhammer State.

Even with an incomplete slate, Bush can still fully compete for all of Alabama’s delegates to the Republican National Convention. According to the Alabama GOP’s rules, candidates running in the March 1 primary competing for 47 declared delegates, 3 for each of the state’s 7 congressional districts and an additional 26 “at-large” delegates. The registration deadline for prospective delegates was November 6, but even if Bush performs well enough in the primary to earn more than 29 delegates he currently has spots for, the state party will find enough delegates to make up the difference.

That won’t be an issue for the four presidential candidates who have at least one pledged delegate for each of the 47 spots: Ben Carson, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, and Donald Trump. In fact, all 4 of those candidates have more committed delegates than the 47 spots available. One other candidate, Rand Paul has 45 out of 47 committed delegates. Bush, however, has 32 delegates running for just 29 spots, with several of the at-large spots and a few congressional district spots unfilled as of the Friday deadline.

If the state party can make up the difference, why do declared delegates matter, and why did the Carson, Rubio, Cruz, and Trump campaigns even bother filling their slots? For one, more declared delegates means more on-the-ground activists touting your candidacy. For another, it can be a good indicator—to donors, to rival candidates, and to the media—of the organizational strength of a campaign. When Bush secured a full slate of Tennessee’s delegates in October, for example, the campaign touted this on their own website.

Early voting in Columbia County for the December 1 runoff elections for House District 122 and County Commission District 3 will be open beginning November 25th.Continue Reading..

18
Nov

Adoptable Georgia Dogs for November 18, 2015

Mecca

Mecca is a 12-week old baby Yellow Labrador Retriever mix girl who is available for adoption from Baldwin County Animal Control in Milledgeville, GA.

Paisley

Paisley is a 12-week old female baby Boxer mix. She has some skin loss that will need to be treated. Paisley is available for adoption from Baldwin County Animal Control in Milledgeville, GA.

Rodney

Rodney is an adult male Chocolate Labrador Retriever who is available for adoption from Baldwin County Animal Control in Milledgeville, GA. According to the shelter, he’s a very happy, active(but not hyper) typical lab guy!