The blog.

17
Aug

Adoptable Georgia Dogs for August 17, 2015

Klink
Klink is an adult male Chihuahua and Dachshund mix who is available for adoption from Toccoa-Stephens County Humane Shelter in Toccoa, GA.
Henry
Henry is an adult male Jack Russell Terrier mix who is available for adoption from Toccoa-Stephens County Humane Shelter in Toccoa, GA.
Benji
Benji is an adult male Lhasa Apso mix who is available for adoption from Toccoa-Stephens County Humane Shelter in Toccoa, GA.

17
Aug

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for August 17, 2015

On August 15, 1903, Georgia Governor Joseph Terrell signed legislation requiring that Georgia schools teach elementary agriculture and civics. Two days later, on August 17, 1903, the General Assembly condemned the practice of whipping female inmates.

Georgia Tech was designated the State School of Technology on August 17, 1908 by joint resolution of the State Senate and State House.

The Panama Canal opened on August 15, 1914. On September 7, 1977, President Jimmy Carter signed a treaty promising to give the Canal to Panama.

The State Highway Department was created on August 16, 1916 to comply with federal funding requirements, when Georgia Governor Nathaniel Harris signed legislation by the General Assembly.

Georgia Governor Hugh Dorsey signed legislation creating the State Department of Banking on August 16, 1919.

Georgia Governor Thomas Hardwick signed legislation creating the Georgia State Board of Forestry on August 15, 1921.

Georgia Governor Clifford Walker signed legislation changing the method of execution in Georgia from hanging to the electric chair on August 16, 1924.

On August 15, 1969, the Woodstock Festival began in upstate New York.

On August 16, 1974, The Ramones played their first public show at CBGB in New York.

The famous awning of the club is on display at the Rock and Roll Museum in Cleveland, Ohio. If you attend the Republican National Convention in 2016, you should visit the Museum, where you can also see Janis Joplin’s Porsche and one of the greatest guitar collections in the world.

Elvis Presley died on August 16, 1977.

Apocalypse Now by Francis Ford Coppolla was released on August 15, 1979.

Paul Anderson, known for years as the “Strongest Man in the World” for his weightlifting feats, died on August 15, 1994 in Vidalia, Georgia. Anderson was born in 1932 in Toccoa, Georgia. He won an Olympic gold medal in the sport of weightlifting in 1956.

On August 17, 1998, President Bill Clinton testified as the subject of a grand jury investigation.

The testimony came after a four-year investigation into Clinton and his wife Hillary’s alleged involvement in several scandals, including accusations of sexual harassment, potentially illegal real-estate deals and suspected “cronyism” involved in the firing of White House travel-agency personnel. The independent prosecutor, Kenneth Starr, then uncovered an affair between Clinton and a White House intern named Monica Lewinsky. When questioned about the affair, Clinton denied it, which led Starr to charge the president with perjury and obstruction of justice, which in turn prompted his testimony on August 17.

R.I.P. Julian Bond

Many others are eulogizing the late Julian Bond, so I’ll just tell you about the first time I met him. In 1985, as a freshman in High School I kept getting in trouble for falling asleep in class, most notably the one on American government. When asked why, I told the teacher “I already know all this, I had the same textbook in 7th grade already.” I was given the year-end exam, which I passed handily, and the teacher, along with the gifted program instructor, decided to give me my own independent study progam. The major project they gave me was to go to the Georgia State Capitol and watch sessions, tour the building, and interview my State Representative and Senator.

That day, when I went to find my Senator, the doorman couldn’t find him. When he learned I had to interview a Senator, he said, “wait here, I’ll find you one,” and he came back with a very tall African-American man named Julian Bond. I asked him the questions I had on my 3×5 cards and he answered and gave me his business card. When I found my father, I gave him Senator Bond’s card. Having lived during the period of the civil rights movement, my dad was very impressed that I got to meet Julian Bond, and if you went up to him today, thirty years later, he’d remember that day.

The last time I saw Julian Bond was a year or two ago at Reagan National Airport in Washington, DC. Thirty years later, I’m still scribbling questions on 3×5 cards and asking them of politicians.

If you enjoy stories about political history, Jim Galloway of the AJC has a neat one about Julian Bond here.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

This weekend, two Floyd County elected officials, elected as Democrats, were born again as Republicans.Continue Reading..

14
Aug

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for August 14, 2014

On August 14, 1784, Russians invaded settled Alaska, founding the first permanent Russian settlement at Three Saints Bay.

Dentist, gambler, and gunfighter Doc Holliday was born on August 14, 1851 in Griffin, Georgia.

Speaking of Griffin, here’s an interesting list of ten things you didn’t know about Griffin, Georgia.

On August 14, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln hosted a group of African-American men at the White House to discuss emancipation of American slaves outside the United States as colonists.

The Second Battle of Dalton was joined on August 14, 1864.

Veterinary medicine was first regulated in Georgia after the signature by Gov. Hoke Smith of legislation on August 14, 1908.

Governor Richard Russell signed a proposed Constitutional Amendment removing the requirement that all taxes be paid before a citizen was allowed to vote.

The County Unit System of elections was created on August 14, 1917 when Governor Hugh Dorsey signed legislation by the General Assembly.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act on August 14, 1935. The road to perdition is paved with good intentions.

On August 14, 1945, the Japanese surrender to the Allies was made public in Japan.

In the afternoon of August 14, Japanese radio announced that an Imperial Proclamation was soon to be made, accepting the terms of unconditional surrender drawn up at the Potsdam Conference. That proclamation had already been recorded by the emperor.

A Special Session called by Governor Miller to address legislative redistricting after the United States Supreme Court threw out Georgia’s Congressional redistricting map was convened on August 14, 1995.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Today, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker will announce that the following Co-Chairs have been named for his Georgia leadership team, joining Congressman Doug Collins (R-Gainesville), who was previously announced as Georgia Chair.

State Sen. Judson Hill
State Rep. Matt Ramsey, (R-Peachtree City) Georgia House Majority Caucus Whip
State Rep. Christian Coomer, (R-Cartersville)
Julianne Thompson, former co-chair of the Atlanta Tea Party
Rachel Little, former Gwinnett County Republican Party chair

Gov. Walker has experienced considerable support in Georgia, and his campaign will continue to have a strong presence in the state in advance of its March 1 primary election. Walker has made five trips to Georgia so far this year, and two since announcing his candidacy just a month ago. Among SEC Primary states, Gov. Walker’s message of fighting and winning for hard-working taxpayers has been especially well-received by voters, activists and elected leaders in Georgia.

This makes the second Presidential candidate to announce a Georgia state leadership team, after the Ted Cruz campaign’s announcement last week. Walker held a Meet and Greet event this past weekend at Lovie’s Barbecue in Buckhead during the Red State Gathering.

Earlier this summer, I interviewed Governor Walker on his campaign, and the importance of the SEC Primary to his effort.

rafael_cruz_flyer_general

Hispanic Patriots will host an event in Buford with Rafael Cruz, the father of United State Senator and Presidential candidate Ted Cruz. Rafael Cruz is every bit the gifted speaker his son is and it’ll be a great event.

Add the Buford Dam on Lake Lanier to the list of places you can’t fly your drone.

Motorists crossing over Buford Dam between Forsyth and Gwinnett County may have noticed an electronic sign encouraging safety.

The flashing messages read: “Be safe with fire.” “Wear your seatbelt.” “No drone zone.”

That last warning began appearing recently, said Lisa Parker, a deputy public affairs officer for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Mobile District, which encompasses Lake Lanier.

The corps, which manages the dam, wanted to alert visitors that using a drone to get footage of the area, which is government-owned property, is illegal.

Kennesaw Mayor Mark Matthews held a Town Hall meeting and wouldn’t answer a question about whether he’ll seek reelection.

Mathews said Thursday night he would not yet announce whether he was running for re-election.

The mayor referenced the upcoming election in his opening statements at the town hall meeting. In addition to the mayor’s position, council seats held by Cris Eaton-Welsh and Tim Killingsworth are on the November election ballot.

Qualifying for the seat will take place Aug. 31 to Sept. 2 at Kennesaw City Hall. Candidates for mayor must pay a fee of $576 and for the council must pay $360 to be eligible to run in the Nov. 3 election, according to the Cobb Elections office.

The State Elections Board has fined Fulton County $18,000 to settle a complaint over violations during the 2008 and 2012 elections.

The violations include failure to place voters in correct precincts, failure to update the supplemental voter list, failure to timely process address changes and other registration documents, failure to provide official voter lists to all precincts, failure to provide absentee ballots to all voters who requested them, failure to process all provisional ballots, failure to complete required paperwork to ensure the accuracy of the election and other violations.

These violations led to qualified voters not being allowed to cast ballots, the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office said on Thursday in a news release.

“I am glad that we were able to come to an agreement with Fulton County on these issues,” said Secretary of State Brian Kemp, chairman of the State Election Board. “The size of this fine shows that Fulton County recognized there were serious issues in how it administered these elections, and I believe they are committed to fixing these issues going forward. The State Election Board has not and will not stand for violations of state election law. Anything that leads to qualified voters not being able to cast a ballot is completely unacceptable, and I applaud Fulton County for recognizing and fixing these issues. I also applaud the State Election Board for standing up for the right to vote.”

DeKalb Ethics Board finds Stan Watson violated code

The DeKalb County Ethics Board found last night that County Commissioner Stan Watson violated the county ethics code but declined to suspend or remove him from office.

The ethics board then considered whether to remove Watson from office or suspend him, but decided to reprimand him, instead.

Watson has admitted that a company called APD Solutions was paying him $500 a month at the very time the company was seeking a county contract.

Watson did, in fact, vote to award the company a one-million dollar county contract, and several months later, while he was still on the company payroll, voted again to award the company an additional $500,000.

Members of the ethics board called that a serious conflict of interest.

“It was evident that he had violated the code, based on the wording that was presented to us, and there’s no doubt in my mind about that,” ethics board member Nikki Forman told 11Alive News after the vote.  “However, I will go on record to say I don’t believe that he should be removed from office.”

Chairman John Ernst, who supported suspending Watson, said the board’s decision to reprimand Watson is more than just a slap on the wrist.

“The citizens will know that what he did is wrong, and Mr. Watson will also know that what he did was wrong,” Ernst said.  “And it’s something that probably can be used against him in a political campaign, that, in fact, he violated the code of ethics.”

DeKalb County Commissioner Nancy Jester, the Board’s sole Republican, wrote on her blog that she had no advance notice of the soccer deal that will cost county taxpayers at least $12 million dollars.

DeKalb iCEO Lee May via his Chief of Staff Edmond Richardson has confirmed Nancy Jester was not invited to sign the April letter inviting Mr. Blank to consider DeKalb County.

Commissioner Nancy Jester had NO knowledge of any kind regarding the DeKalb soccer deal in April.

DeKalb County iCEO Lee May said differently on the day the Commission voted for the soccer deal.

Lee May Lie2

Then he won the first “GaPundit Award for Ironic Juxtaposition.”

Lee May Lie

 

Jester also writes that the use of County general funds to pay for the soccer facility is inappropriate and that Parks and Recreations funds should be used.

Building soccer fields and locating the County Parks and Recreation Department is clearly an expenditure that should be paid from the segregated, Parks and Recreation fund.  County residents pay a specific millage rate for that service.  I see no reason why cities that have their own Parks and Recreation Departments, for which their citizens are taxed, should pay for the County’s development of a parks and recreation facility and department office relocation and rent.  This is contrary to the purpose of fund accounting and the service delivery strategy that each city negotiates with the county.

Similarly, the Roads and Drainage component of this deal should be paid from the Roads and Drainage Fund.  There is no reason that cities that do not use DeKalb to provide these services should pay to demolish and relocate this department.

The abuse of the General Fund is striking.  Keep in mind that DeKalb raised the General Fund millage rate by over 2 mills this year; resulting in a millage rate increase for every city in DeKalb.  And this increase is on top of increased property assessments for 2015.

14
Aug

Adoptable Georgia Dogs for August 14, 2015

The following dogs have been placed on the Euthanasia list for next Wednesday due to overcrowding at the Barrow County Animal Shelter in Winder, GA.
Barrow070

Smokey is a young mixed breed male dog with Rotweiler or German Sheperd-like markings. He is available for adoption with no fee at the Barrow County Animal Shelter in Winder, GA.

Barrow206

Number 206 is a 10-month old Labrador Retriever mix, pretty much still a puppy. He is already neutered and vetted and is available for adoption for $55, a very low fee, at the Barrow County Animal Shelter in Winder, GA.

Barrow209

Jack is listed as a Pit Mix, but I’d say he looks more Lab-like to me. He was surrendered by his owner and fully-vetted, so he’s available for adoption with no fee from the Barrow County Animal Shelter in Winder, GA.

13
Aug

Gov. Scott Walker to announce Georgia leadership team

Scott Walker Judson Hill

According to his campaign, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker will announce on Friday morning that the following Co-Chairs have been named for his Georgia leadership team, joining Congressman Doug Collins (R-Gainesville), who was previously announced as Georgia Chair.

State Sen. Judson Hill
State Rep. Matt Ramsey, (R-Peachtree City) Georgia House Majority Caucus Whip
State Rep. Christian Coomer, (R-Cartersville)
Julianne Thompson, former co-chair of the Atlanta Tea Party
Rachel Little, former Gwinnett County Republican Party chair

Gov. Walker has experienced considerable support in Georgia, and his campaign will continue to have a strong presence in the state in advance of its March 1 primary election. Walker has made five trips to Georgia so far this year, and two since announcing his candidacy just a month ago. Among SEC Primary states, Gov. Walker’s message of fighting and winning for hard-working taxpayers has been especially well-received by voters, activists and elected leaders in Georgia.

This makes the second Presidential candidate to announce a Georgia state leadership team, after the Ted Cruz campaign’s announcement last week. Walker held a Meet and Greet event this past weekend at Lovie’s Barbecue in Buckhead during the Red State Gathering.

Earlier this summer, I interviewed Governor Walker on his campaign, and the importance of the SEC Primary to his effort.

 

13
Aug

Adoptable Georgia Dogs for August 13, 2015

Widget

Widget is a young female Italian Greyhound who is available for adoption from Atlanta Pet Rescue & Adoption Inc. in Smyrna, GA.

She is a joyful little lady who thinks life is full of candy and sunshine. She loves meeting new people and other dogs. She was a little unsure of her new dog pen-mates at first, but has quickly learned that they are all about fun, just like her. She is a young gal who will need a home to teach her all the great things about becoming an adult dog. Her personality is so fantastic she should make a good fit for almost any household.

Stubbs

Stubbs is an adult male Miniature Pinscher who is available for adoption from Atlanta Pet Rescue & Adoption Inc. in Smyrna, GA.

Stubbs is gleeful in almost everything he does. Hanging out with other dogs, getting a tummy rub from a human pal, playing with a toy…you name it, he thinks it is super. He has been very social and affectionate with the volunteers and staff he has met.

Shortstack

Shortstack is an adult male Corgi who is available for adoption from Atlanta Pet Rescue & Adoption Inc. in Smyrna, GA.

This girl is thick, sweet and delightful. Little Shortstack has a wonderful personality. She is friendly with people and other dogs. She wants to sit in your lap and have her big, bat-ears petted as she drifts off to sleep. She is very content to hang with her canine companions but is really looking for a home of her own. She is laid back and social and should fit right in with almost any home.

13
Aug

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for August 13, 2015

Georgia and American History

On August 13, 1909, Georgia Governor Joseph Brown signed legislation designating February 12 as Georgia Day to commemorate Oglethorpe’s landing near Savannah in 1733.

One year later, Brown signed the first legislation regulating automobiles in Georgia on August 13, 1910. The act included a minimum driving age of 16, prohibited driving while intoxicated, and required a car tag, headlight, and red taillight.

President Jimmy Carter was nominated for reelection as President by the Democratic National Convention in New York City on August 13, 1980.

President Ronald Reagan signed the Economic Recovery Tax Act on August 13, 1981.

The ERTA included a 25 percent reduction in marginal tax rates for individuals, phased in over three years, and indexed for inflation from that point on. The marginal tax rate, or the tax rate on the last dollar earned, was considered more important to economic activity than the average tax rate (total tax paid as a percentage of income earned), as it affected income earned through “extra” activities such as education, entrepreneurship or investment. Reducing marginal tax rates, the theory went, would help the economy grow faster through such extra efforts by individuals and businesses. The 1981 act, combined with another major tax reform act in 1986, cut marginal tax rates on high-income taxpayers from 70 percent to around 30 percent, and would be the defining economic legacy of Reagan’s presidency.

Reagan’s tax cuts were designed to put maximum emphasis on encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship and creating incentives for the development of venture capital and greater investment in human capital through training and education. The cuts particularly benefited “idea” industries such as software or financial services; fittingly, Reagan’s first term saw the advent of the information revolution, including IBM’s introduction of its first personal computer (PC) and the rise or launch of such tech companies as Intel, Microsoft, Dell, Sun Microsystems, Compaq and Cisco Systems.

Fast Times at Ridgemont High was released on August 13, 1982.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

United States Senator Johnny Isakson has drawn a potential Democratic opponent in the Rev. Raphael Warnock. Jim Galloway of the AJC has one of his signature in-depth pieces on how the race is shaping up.

Last week, the Rev. Raphael Warnock, senior pastor of Ebenezer [Baptist Church], announced he is considering a Democratic challenge to Isakson’s re-election bid.

So far, Warnock is the only Democrat to speak publicly of a challenge to Isakson. Warnock has never run for public office before, but the 45-year-old pastor is a stirring orator.

Warnock has spoken of the need to register more African-American voters, and that may be incentive enough to enter the race. In any case, he would provide Isakson with eloquent, if not necessarily well-funded, opposition.

[O]n a visit to Isakson’s Atlanta office, it only made sense to ask Isakson what he thought of the Ebenezer pastor’s deliberations.

“I know Reverend Warnock very well. He’s a very talented and gifted preacher,” the 70-year-old Republican senator began….“I gave him my ticket to the State of the Union address that President Obama made one year.”

Before I walked into Isakson’s office, I had texted the vacationing Warnock to give him a heads up. I would need the pastor’s response if Isakson said anything untoward. Warnock replied that he doubted it would be necessary. “He and I have a good personal relationship,” the pastor texted back. And he was right.

[I]n Georgia, we have a U.S. Senate race that is veering dangerously close to becoming a bombast-free zone. If he runs, the Reverend Warnock will have to answer the same question I posed to Isakson: Where’s the anger?

“I can get angry in a heartbeat if someone’s picking on my friends,” Isakson replied. “I’m a passionate man, not an angry man. There’s a difference.”

But a lack of animosity between the candidates doesn’t mean that negative attacks are off the table – it only means that any such attacks are likely to be made by third parties.Continue Reading..

12
Aug

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for August 12, 2015

Georgia and American History

On August 12, 1492 by the current calendar, Christopher Columbus set sail from the port of Palos de la Frontera in southern Spain with the Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria. Other accounts date his arrival at the Canary Islands off the coast of northwestern Africa on August 12, 1492.

Juan Ponce de Leon invaded Puerto Rico on August 12, 1508 and declared himself Governor.

On August 12, 1864, Confederate General John B. Hood prohibited Confederate soldier from seizing civilian property.

The first Ford Model T rolled off the assembly line on August 12, 1904.

On August 12, 1908, Ford’s first “Model T” rolled off a Detroit, Michigan, factory floor. Within six years, the car, company and man were propelled to unprecedented success, thanks to the new Highland Park plant’s first-of-its-kind assembly line, which created the intricate product quickly and in large numbers.

“If it hadn’t been for Henry Ford’s drive to create a mass market for cars, America wouldn’t have a middle class today,” wrote [Lee] Iacocca.

Increased travel spurred appeals for better and more roads, the development of suburbs, the oil industry’s rise and a boom in gas stations, strip malls and motels.

But the assembly line itself had the biggest impact on American society, Hyde contended, in making possible the swift, mass production of everything from computers to “fast food.”

On August 12, 1910, Georgia Governor Joseph M. Brown signed legislation prohibiting the carrying of a pistol or revolver without a license.

East Germany began building the Berlin Wall on August 12, 1961.

[T]he government of East Germany, on the night of August 12, 1961, began to seal off all points of entrance into West Berlin from East Berlin by stringing barbed wire and posting sentries. In the days and weeks to come, construction of a concrete block wall began, complete with sentry towers and minefields around it. The Berlin Wall succeeded in completely sealing off the two sections of Berlin.

Three churches in Albany, Georgia first allowed African-Americans to attend their services on August 12, 1962.

On August 12, 1968, Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and John Bonham played together for the first time.

The first Space Shuttle, Enterprise, made its first flight in the earth’s atmosphere on August 12, 1977.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Democrat Taylor Bennett won the Special Runoff Election in State House District 80, handing Democrats a majority of the Fulton County Legislative Delegation and strengthening their bargaining position on statewide legislation.

Bennett’s election gives Democrats control of Fulton County’s legislative delegation, where Republicans had held a 13-12 majority.

His win also gives Democrats more than one-third of the seats in the state House, which is enough to block constitutional amendment bills from passing if each party were to vote together.

Continue Reading..

12
Aug

Adoptable Georgia Dogs for August 12, 2015

Gwen

Gwen is a female Great Pyrenees mix (I think she looks more like a Hound) who weighs 65 pounds and is four years old. She was surrendered by her owners who said she’s good with children, dogs, and cats. Gwen is available for adoption from Walton County Animal Control in Monroe, GA.

Rowan

Rowan is a 3-year old Retriever/Newfoundland mix who weighs 65-76 pounds and is available for adoption from Walton County Animal Control in Monroe, GA. Rowan is very calm and quiet and submissive when handled.

Ella

Ella is a beautiful 3-year old German Shepherd who weighs 45-50 pounds, has already been spayed, and is available for adoption from Walton County Animal Control in Monroe, GA. She is friendly and social.

11
Aug

Adoptable Georgia Dogs for August 11, 2015

Max Shepherd

Max is an adult male German Shepherd Dog & Rottweiler Mix who is available for adoption from Best Friends Humane Society in Worth County, Sylvester, GA.

Max Doxie

Max is an adult male Dachshund with a corkscrew tail and a sweet, loving personality and high energy level. Max is available for adoption from Albany Pet Partners in Albany, GA.

Max Lab

Max is a sweet, 14-year old Black Labrador Retriever senior male who weighs 50 pounds.

Max is in generally good health but he does take Thyroid medicine twice a day and does have a heart murmur. He enjoys walks and loves to go riding in the car. He currently lives with other foster dogs both young and old, Max gets along with all of them. He does live with cats and he gets a little too friendly with the cats at times. This sweet ole guy just needs someone to love him the rest of his days. If you think you are able to give him the love and attention he needs, please contact his friends, [email protected]

Max is available for adoption from Emily’s Friends in Chickamauga, GA.