Perdue didn’t do much; Deal likely to do even less

When Sonny Perdue took the oath as governor in January 2003, Georgia’s transportation system was hamstrung by a lack of funding and vision, and its education system was underperforming national standards. The state also faced a $620 million budget shortfall, and was tied up in a lengthy ongoing water war with its neighbors in Alabama and Florida.

Almost eight years later, with Perdue ready to leave office, little has been done to address those problems. In fact, some of those problems have become considerably worse.

In his 2002 campaign, for example, Perdue said he would call a summit of governors to resolve the tri-state water war. “We’ll come together face-to-face with no staff and hammer this thing out,” he promised. But years passed and no resolution was found, and with a federal deadline of July 2012 looming, Georgia’s legal situation in the water wars is much more precarious today than it was when Perdue took office.

The state’s transportation crisis has worsened as well. The resource-starved Department of Transportation is all but bankrupt, with almost no means to address traffic congestion and decaying, inadequate infrastructure. There’s no help in sight until at least 2012, when metro Atlanta and other regions will be asked to vote on an inadequate but badly needed one-penny sales tax devoted to transportation. And even that sign of hope may prove an illusion.

Perdue’s stop-and-go leadership style on transportation was epitomized by a much-ballyhooed 2008 news conference in which the governor announced firm support for a new commuter rail line.

“Let’s move out aggressively,” Perdue said. “Once I’ve made up my mind, I’m usually impatient.” And that’s the last that’s been heard of it since.

Going into 2011, the state’s budget shortfall is also three times larger than when Perdue took office, which will no doubt force additional budget cuts to education and other programs already cut to the bone.

Given the global economic situation, it’s hard to blame that shortfall on the outgoing governor. To the contrary, Perdue’s greatest strength as governor has been fiscal management. But any assessment of his legacy must include the billions of dollars that he insisted be cut from education even when times were good, making later cuts all the more painful.

Looking ahead — and I hope I’m proved wrong about this — anyone who liked Perdue’s lackadaisical eight years is probably going to love incoming Gov. Nathan Deal. His history in politics and his post-election behavior suggest that he will be even less willing than Perdue to lead aggressively.

In almost 18 years in Congress, Deal left almost no mark and showed no instinct for leadership. And since his win over Democrat Roy Barnes, he has shown no sign of changing.

His transition team, for example, is dominated not by his own people but by longtime lobbyists representing most if not all of the state’s special interests. (In an awkward bow to ethical concerns, the lobbyists are required to refrain from lobbying during the actual transition, but it’s hard to see what that accomplishes.)

Deal has also been oddly acquiescent as Perdue moved to install his own loyalists in critical state posts. Those include the top two jobs at the Department of Economic Development, the state treasurer and the heads of the Office of Planning and Budget, Personnel Administration, the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority and the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority.

(UPDATE: Gov.-elect Deal has recommended the appointment of Chris Cummiskey to head the state Department of Economic Development, replacing Heidi Green, who had been elevated to the post by Perdue in July.)

A more aggressive new governor with plans to use his authority would demand the right to fill those jobs himself. Deal’s passivity suggests that once in office, he will make Perdue seem downright activist.

230 comments Add your comment

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
7:30 am

More of the same…. Georgian’s will get what they voted for.

TH

November 30th, 2010
7:32 am

Today is November 30.

BONER, WHERE ARE THE JOBS CREATED FROM THE BUSH TAX CUTS FOR THE WEALTHY?

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
7:33 am

Although, I’m willing to bet that by the time Deal ends his 4 years, there won’t be much said about his financial situation and how drastic it has changed in his term.

Real Scooter

November 30th, 2010
7:43 am

It’s hard to imagine someone actually worse than Perdue. What a Deal! :shock:

Peadawg

November 30th, 2010
7:52 am

The sad thing is Barnes isn’t any better. Georgia was screwed either way.

TaxPayer

November 30th, 2010
7:52 am

WoW! Why so much optimism, Jay. These are Georgia’s good old boys you speak of so there really is no need to even entertain expectations that extend beyond the over-sized pockets that they have had specially made for their coveralls. We can only hope that things do not get significantly worse under the “new” leadership that the majority of Georgia’s voters have chosen and that’s a stretch. But, if it gets too bad, they have not sealed the borders yet. So, we can escape to one of the other states and cut our losses in a pinch. I wonder which one would be the better choice, South Carolina, Tennessee, Florida, Alabama… maybe North Carolina. There’s the ticket.

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
7:53 am

It’s hard to imagine someone actually worse than Perdue. What a Deal!

The sad thing is Barnes isn’t any better. Georgia was screwed either way.

Just like the old Toyota commercial jingle goes…

“You asked for it, you got it…”

JohnnyReb

November 30th, 2010
7:54 am

Deal could, like any other state/governor, likely do a better job if our state’s fate was not so closely tied to the Federal purse strings. The Fed Gov continues to inflict upon the states unfunded mandates while operating under the Robin Hood principle. Any logical thinker only needs to look at the Federal Award for the trolley, and the City government’s buy-in with a smile while surrounding infrastruture falls apart, to see the challenge facing the governor – the state versus Atlanta. Deal will have done a good job if he maintains status-quo while positioning for growth when the recovery kicks in.

JohnnyReb

November 30th, 2010
7:57 am

Taxpayer – several truck loads of good old boys will help you pack. Just give us your address. Assuming you live in Georgia, there must have been something owned or operated by those same good old boys that brought you to a fine state which you apparently do not appreicate.

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

November 30th, 2010
7:59 am

Well, all the worthless Sonny ever give me was a name for my grandkid. Which I’m changing as soon as I get a few bucks set aside to pay a lawyer. Little _________ Zell George will have a new 1st name. He ain’t going thru life named after a shiftless guvner that didn’t do nothing except build some nice boat ramps, get a special tax break, pray for rain, get his trucking co. a exit to the port, and keep the Heathens from buying booze on my Sabbath.

I don’t know what to expect from Nathan. But one thing’s for sure. He’ll be very rich within two years. All the debts will be paid off. Just like we don’t want to see sausage being made, we won’t see how he comes across all that money. At least I never named my grandkid after him.

Have a good day everybody.

Mary Elizabeth

November 30th, 2010
8:03 am

Ironically, Perdue’s tenure could be viewed as being activisit toward the end of smaller government.

I will look forward to that day when the term “public servant” is, once again, held in esteem.

Granny Godzilla

November 30th, 2010
8:04 am

There are millions of really good people in Georgia…..and we were offered Barnes and Deal.

What the hell is that all about?

SOUTHERN ATL

November 30th, 2010
8:05 am

Good article. I wonder how much time Sonny will actually spend fishing!! The majority in Georgia has chosen Deal and it will be fascinating to see if he handles the states finances better than he handles his own.

Nofreecheese

November 30th, 2010
8:05 am

All I can say to defend Deal is that he’s far better than Barnes; not exactly a ringing endorsement, but we’re all victims of the two-party system. As far as a new tax–forget it! Government needs the same impetus as private individuals and business which forces them to make difficult decisions. While I don’t know if the premise of Jay’s statement is accurate regarding the billions cut from education when times were good, if this is the case, then it made things far less painful when tax revenues evaporated w/ the economic decline–less shock to the system.

mystified

November 30th, 2010
8:07 am

If there is a major flaw in our constitutional republic it is term limits. I like them. They are necessary, but they allow spineless politicians to ignore major problems and pass them on to the next elected official. They can stand on no new taxes or no service disruptions and tread water until their term is over instead of actually leading us through the crisis and solving the problem. Wouldn’t it be great to have a leader who leads regardless of the cost to their reelection bid.

Bob

November 30th, 2010
8:10 am

I don’t think it matters who is gov if you are an Atlanta Public Schools Student. You will get a new super, picked from a field that exludes the majority of population. Then you will hear the praise from the left about how great the new super is and how great the schools now are. Then you will get great grades and be told you are somebody. Then you score a 4 on the SAT and realize you have not learned a damn thing. Then the left will bash repubs for not sending enough money to ATL schools, even though you can send two kids to Pius for the same money. I could be wrong, the left may blame it on the tea party, but they will place blame.

TaxPayer

November 30th, 2010
8:11 am

That JohnnyReb shore is a funny boy.

Mary Elizabeth

November 30th, 2010
8:13 am

Nofreecheese @ 8:05 a.m.
“While, I don’t know if the premise of Jay’s statement is accurate regarding the billions cut from
education when times were good. . . ”

I repeat, “Perdue’s tenure could be viewed as activist toward the end of smaller government.”
The cuts were not totally by necessity, but by design, in my opinion.

Normal

November 30th, 2010
8:14 am

Get yer raw Deal here…. Good morning Georgia…you were warned…

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
8:14 am

see the challenge facing the governor – the state versus Atlanta.

Yep. The taxpayers in the metro area have been carrying the rest of the state for far too long. It’s time for them to carry their own weight. Maybe Deal will be the one to start that trend.

Normal

November 30th, 2010
8:17 am

TaxPayer

November 30th, 2010
8:18 am

Sounds like Bob is trying to place blame on someone other than Georgia’s good old boys for what they have “done” here in Georgia. Last time I checked, Georgia was still being run by the Republicans so it’s kinda hard to go and blame others for their own doin’. And quit tryin’ to blame Obama for what Georgia’s elected ones are doin’. To hear some of you compassionate conservatives talk, one might get the impression that Obama comes down here to Georgia and twists each one of your arms until you agree to do as he tells you to do and surely there would be no truth to such a notion outside the confines of a FOX news broadcast.

Call it like it is

November 30th, 2010
8:18 am

Good, honest people don’t run. We had the choice between Barnes and Deal. We already knew what we would get with Barnes, we could only pray that Deal will be better. Its just sad that an honest person didnt come out of the woodwork to run. Mixed feelings about Deal, do I want him to come out and lead, or stay in the background and dont do any further damage. Time will tell

Steve

November 30th, 2010
8:19 am

Georgia, fast becoming Mississippi East.
So much potential squandered.

Keep up the good fight!

November 30th, 2010
8:21 am

Deal will be doing alot….to line his pockets.

JDW

November 30th, 2010
8:24 am

Jay it is all in your perspective. I wager if you ask Sonny he will tell you that his accomplishments are legendary. For example:

He saved over $100,000 in real estate taxes.

He borrowed $21 million on really great terms to finance his business.

He has leveraged state resources and appointments well position himself to profit from doing business with the state in Savannah.

Folks that is just what we know…I bet there is much much more.

Didn’t do much? I think Sonny would tell you this was the most profitable 8 years of his life. Nathan on the other hand…just can’t wait to scoop up his “fair” share.

AmVet

November 30th, 2010
8:29 am

From downstairs…SoCo thanks for the link to nolables.org.

Really good stuff. It is certainly an idea whose time has come. I’m in.

Occasionally I see where someone posits that government not doing anything is preferable. Those people got their dream come true with Purdue. While the myriad of problems facing us spiraled more and more out of control. (Traffic, jobs, water, breathable air in Atlanta summers…)

Ask them now, if this do-nothing style of governance is what our communities and nation needs.

And I still contend that with the election of one of the most corrupt members of the entire US Congress, Georgia will fall further and further behind in all of the categories that matter most…

Mick

November 30th, 2010
8:29 am

Very depressing comments about your new governor, but wait florida elected a crook also, so maybe your “deal” won’t be so bad…

mm

November 30th, 2010
8:30 am

Republicans don’t govern. They just run for office, then collect paychecks.

pat

November 30th, 2010
8:30 am

Wow! There are so many good political topics right now and you’re blogging about what might sorta, could be in GA? Deal ain’t great, Barnes was worse and Purdue is below dog poo poo.
Now there is impending war in the Korean penisula, a massive security breach by a pro-Iranian rapist from Sweden, and obama wants to have a slurpee with Republican leaders….Who gives a crap what you think Deal may do?

capitalism and war

November 30th, 2010
8:32 am

As usual the very pagan Bookman is wrong. Perdue did more for the State of Georgia by praying publicly than any governor has since Reconstruction.

We lead by example, Bookman. Perdue’s ei was a great one. We are a great God fearing nation, and we don’t take kindly to people who keep pounding the nails into the side and spears into the hands and feet of you know who.

It does a man good to get down on his knees once in a while, Mr Boo. I’ll pray for your lost soul.

Shame. Recriminations, and bitter, bitter dregs.

Jklol

Doggone/GA

November 30th, 2010
8:33 am

“There are so many good political topics right now and you’re blogging about what might sorta, could be in GA”

Standard reply: this is Jay’s blog, not yours. If you don’t like his choice of subjects, then start your OWN blog and you can comment on any news YOU choose.

retired early

November 30th, 2010
8:34 am

When does that pendulum start to swing back?

dumbcrkr

November 30th, 2010
8:37 am

Sonny (R) was in charge for 8 years and what did Georgia get? Now you dummies put in Nathan (R) “Let’s make a Deal” and you think things are going to get better? Well the will. He’ll pay off his debt with your money and his high paid lobbyist cronies will get rich too.

No wonder you guy’s rank 49/50 in education. But look at the bright side you’re smarter than Mississippi.

TaxPayer

November 30th, 2010
8:38 am

On the brighter side, we got an abundance of water today. Maybe Perdue should pass his own special law requiring everyone to pray that those rain clouds just park themselves over Alabama, Georgia and Florida so everyone gets all the rain they could ever need, forever. By the way, I see Georgia is finally making its move and buying up some of that Oaky Woods land for only double what they could have bought it for. What a Deal. I mean, What a Perdue.

Road Scholar

November 30th, 2010
8:39 am

Jay , what happened to Heidi Green?

Add to Perdue’s achievements is the purchasing of land at twice the original price. Good use of taxpayers money….in a recession!

Nofreecheese

November 30th, 2010
8:39 am

What Deal’s victory and Republican near super-majorities will allow is for the emergence of more “naturally drawn” congressional districts. Unfortunately, Obama will sic the Justice Dept. and Eric Holder after GA (among other southern states) under the now pointless Civil Right Voting Act to prevent the loss of Democrat-safe districts.

@ Mary Elizabeth: There are many private schools that deliver a far superior education for less money than our public schools–even after factoring in the socioeconomic demograpics of their students. I’ll bet you the parents of the children you served in Dekalb County would have preferred to have sent their children to an institution of their choice. There are not enough dedicated treachers like you in public schools to compensate for their inadequacies. Our political class views public schools as a means of dispensing money and rewarding political allies. Although not referring to education, the WSJ had a great line: “…diffuse costs with concentrated benefits.” This is the essence of politics.

jt

November 30th, 2010
8:39 am

Actually, the FIRST thing Perdue did was raise taxes on tobacco.

Once a democrat, you can never go back.

Statist pig.

md

November 30th, 2010
8:40 am

“I will look forward to that day when the term “public servant” is, once again, held in esteem.”

Hope you are not holding your breath while waiting……………doubt it will happen in our lifetime.

pat

November 30th, 2010
8:43 am

JT, right on.

@@

November 30th, 2010
8:44 am

…Deal likely to do even less

The same could be said for Obama, who, as it turns out, is Bush-lite.

josef:

From last night. I don’t really think of Hillary as a sister, but she certainly would have made a better sister than Obama.

schnirt

md

November 30th, 2010
8:46 am

“Standard reply: this is Jay’s blog, not yours. If you don’t like his choice of subjects, then start your OWN blog and you can comment on any news YOU choose.”

Then maybe Jay should be the one responding………………..

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
8:47 am

AmV

I’m always on the lookout for something like that. I’ve been reading their site for the past few days. I may even sign onto the pledge. If they’re legit, it may be worth promoting.

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
8:49 am

The same could be said for Obama, who, as it turns out, is Bush-lite

You mean to tell me that Bush was a Socialist, Fascist, Marxist, Muslim-in-disguise, Manchurian Candidate wanna-be President too?!!? (did I get all of Obama’s adjectives in there)… forgot Uppity too!!!

Doggone/GA

November 30th, 2010
8:50 am

SoCo – you forgot “half-Rican”

barking frog

November 30th, 2010
8:51 am

Georgia should apply to the Corps of Engineers to extract
water from the Tennessee River and decrease use from Lake
Lanier on environmental grounds. A pipeline from Alabama
or Tennessee could fill the needs. Recycling water could also
relieve some usage. Rail will never be feasible unless gas
lands around 5.00 per gallon. Sometimes politicians doing
nothing are more benefit than politicians doing something.

larry

November 30th, 2010
8:52 am

But Jaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyy!!! We have a mini Bass Pro Shop just down the road from my house in which Deal will sell to the state for 75% higher than its appraised. Just think of all the jobs it will provide.

carlosgvv

November 30th, 2010
8:53 am

Sonny’s record as Governor has been pretty much front and center for the last eight years. In spite of this, Nathan Deal gets elected as our new Governor. The abysmal intelligence level of the majority of Georgia voters clearly shows why we are usually ranked near or at the bottom in America.

Nofreecheese

November 30th, 2010
8:53 am

@ Mick 8:29: You’re an ignorant knee-jerk reactionary. All off the Medicare billing fraud took was taking place in companies before Rick Scott (Gov. elect of FL) acquired them. He was not complicit in any fraud. Had he not purchased those companies, the government would have had no chance of collecting the $1.7 billion fine that was imposed–which Columbia/HCA is able to.

Daedalus

November 30th, 2010
8:59 am

What? The Governor did a great job…of using his job to increase his personal net worth. Did anyone ever really expect him to give a hoot about anything else.

Now we have Nathan “lets-make-a” Deal. The Tea-Partiers and GOP wingnuts have put thise state back 20 years. Want progress on transportation, infrastructure, jobs, water? Then move out of Georgia.

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
9:00 am

barking frog

I disagree with the rail. $5 gas would make it more of an option, but if we integrated true high-speed rail with our air traffic, that could ease overcrowded airspace. You could cut back hourly flights from Atlanta to Orlando, for example, if there was a train that could get you there in a decent time. Rail will not work, however, without dedicated lines specifically built for true high-speed. The initial start-up of such a system would be pricey, but I think the initial investment would greatly reduce the need for casual travelers to clog airports. That, in turn, would make TSA’s job easier and cut down on the unnecessary searches.

AmVet

November 30th, 2010
9:01 am

SoCo, turning the tide (no pun intended!) is going to require enormous work. Taking back our blood-soaked and sacred sovereignty from the multi-nationals and “monied powers” (hat tip Thomas Jefferson) will require enormous sacrifice and relentless determination. Electing men of true principle and moral courage will be exceedingly difficult, as the “good’ ones will not tolerate the “gotchas”, character assassinations and endless prevarications that are considered the norm of today.

Simply stated, removing the corporate-led stranglehold on our collective American throats is going to take the hard work of millions of people.

And for many, this looks as good as any place to start.

In some ways, I’ve always felt I was 50 years ahead of my time. I won’t be around to see it, but I pray to ALL of the deities, that rank and file American citizens will finally get fully informed and fully involved. By that time the plutocracy will be completely implemented, 95% of all wealth and associated power in this republic will be concentrated into 10% or less of the population and the oligarchs may likely suffer the same fate as those in France circa 1789.

The only question is who will be the new age Robespierre?

In the meantime, let the rest of us eat cake…

Normal

November 30th, 2010
9:07 am

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
9:00 am

But the most important reason for rail of any sort is jobs, jobs. jobs. And not just construction, but permanent jobs in running the rails. It’s a win-win, plus some.

Paulo977

November 30th, 2010
9:09 am

Mary Elizabeth
@8:13am
“By design”
You betcha!!
The response to you proved your point
in no uncertain way!!!!!!

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
9:09 am

By that time the plutocracy will be completely implemented, 95% of all wealth and associated power in this republic will be concentrated into 10% or less of the population

And that’s why I get a good chuckle when people say this is a Christian nation. That a nation, where the lust for money is what drives the economy, could be considered Christian is quite profound, if not warped, thinking. Being a Christian myself, I would never equate the two, but that’s just me.

Those with money here have the power, and they are not going to let it go without a knock-down, drag-out fight. It will be a long, long fight….

TnGelding

November 30th, 2010
9:09 am

md

November 30th, 2010
9:14 am

Rail?? Amtrak and Marta don’t exactly provide great cases for it.

I agree that gas prices would make a bit of a difference, but americans just don’t like to give up the convenience of their cars. Fly or rail, one still has to have a car when they get where they are going.

@@

November 30th, 2010
9:14 am

SoCo:

You mean to tell me that Bush was a Socialist, Fascist, Marxist, Muslim-in-disguise, Manchurian Candidate wanna-be President too?!!? (did I get all of Obama’s adjectives in there)… forgot Uppity too!!!

Other than “Uppity”…your adjective, not mine (I prefer arrogant/detached) have you ever seen me use any of the above to describe Obama? The answer is NO!!!

A statist? Yes!!!!

The term statism is sometimes used to refer to state capitalism or highly-regulated market economies with large amounts of government intervention. It is also used to refer to state socialism or co-operative economic systems that use the state, through nationalization, as a means of running industry.

For someone who promotes “no labels”, you certainly work hard to apply them to others, who may, or may not, agree with you on all things.

The solutions that nolabels.com advocates are the same as those being advocated by Congressman Paul Ryan (R). I’m a fan.

StJ

November 30th, 2010
9:17 am

“A more aggressive new governor with plans to use his authority would demand the right to fill those jobs himself.” Who’s to say that Deal won’t do that later?

Regarding the budget shortfall, hopefully this will be an opportunity to cut the dead wood instead of needed programs & personnel, although I’m not holding my breath.

Mr. Snarky

November 30th, 2010
9:18 am

My dog could have done a better job than Sonny, but these days, the hardest work any Repub has to do is to win their primary. Then they’re home free until the next primary…just keep railing against Obama and Pelosi (just because she’s not in charge any more won’t make any difference) and do nothing. I wish my job were so easy.

JS

November 30th, 2010
9:18 am

Please, please tell me no one is actually surprised by any of this?? All we can do is point the finger at us – the citizens of Georgia who have allowed such pathetic candidates to be elected – and in some cases, not once, but TWICE! Shame on us!

Doggone/GA

November 30th, 2010
9:18 am

“Fly or rail, one still has to have a car when they get where they are going.”

I have LONG thought that rail services were missing a good trick. For instance, I used to do a lot of long-distance driving to get to events with my dogs. Rail would have taken me there too, but it was to inconvenient – because, as you said, I still needed my van when I got there. Plus, traveling with up to 10 dogs on rail was just too much hassle.

But if I could have, for a reasonable sum, been able to load my van and dogs onto a train – say in a closed box car – AND been able to travel with them, it would have been a viable option.

RAPbama

November 30th, 2010
9:21 am

Jay, you got one thing wrong. The transportation infrastructure of Georgia is not in an advanced state of decay. Much of it is new, our state highways regularly are named the best in the U.S., they are well paved and we don’t have an adverse climate. We are the nation’s envy when it comes to the condition of our roads.

Choosing between Deal and Barnes was worse that choosing between Mutt and Jeff. Good Ole boys still rule here. Georgia is so bi-polar, there’s Atlanta and then there is Georgia, that we are unlikely to have a non-good ole boy for a long time.

Common Sense isn't very Common

November 30th, 2010
9:21 am

Southern Comfort@8:49 am

You mean to tell me that Bush was a Socialist, Fascist, Marxist, Muslim-in-disguise, Manchurian Candidate wanna-be President too?!!? (did I get all of Obama’s adjectives in there)… forgot Uppity too!!!
—————————
Kenyan also
Non-American

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
9:22 am

@@

I didn’t mean your adjectives exclusively. I was referring to the ones generally used to describe him.

md

If Amtrak was run as a business and had it’s own dedicated lines to cut traffic and delays, I think they could compete with air traffic for short trips. For instance, a typical flight from Reagan National in DC to JFK in NY is scheduled for 1.5 hours even though it’s only about 45 mins of actual fight time. With a set of dedicated tracks, there’s little to no congestion to worry about, and you could use trains capable of running in excess of 200mph. Add the fact that you could potentially move people and their cars with the train, and it’s a better option for the casual traveler who doesn’t want to drive the entire trip.

ty webb

November 30th, 2010
9:23 am

“Want progress on transportation, infrastructure, jobs, water? Then move out of Georgia”

I’ll drink to that! “Don’t let the door hit ya where the good lord split ya.”

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
9:24 am

Kenyan also

I can’t believe I forgot that one. With his anti-colonial Kenyanese self!!!

TaxPayer

November 30th, 2010
9:27 am

The Roadmap would give the most affluent households a new round of very large, costly tax cuts by reducing income tax rates on high-income households; eliminating income taxes on capital gains, dividends, and interest; and abolishing the corporate income tax, the estate tax, and the alternative minimum tax. At the same time, the Ryan plan would raise taxes for most middle-income families, privatize a substantial portion of Social Security, eliminate the tax exclusion for employer-sponsored health insurance, end traditional Medicare and most of Medicaid, and terminate the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

How could any true compassionate conservative resist. Just look at some of the great things that Roadmap would accomplish.

ty webb

November 30th, 2010
9:29 am

And on another topic, Has the racist who elbowed Obama in the mouth been prosecuted for a hate crime yet?

Bob

November 30th, 2010
9:29 am

Taxpayer, you really think 10 years of repub state control has given us 30 years of failed Atlanta schools ? That’s funny, but how much you want to bet the good old boys you are blaming are smart enough to keep their kids out of APS. Did the tea party elect Beverly Hall ? The state has many quality public schools, Atlanta has a few good schools, Morris Brandon & Sarah Smith to name a couple, the majority though are expensive day care centers. Like I said, somebody will blame repubs, taxpayer, I guess you blame repubs for Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and NAFTA.

@@

November 30th, 2010
9:30 am

SoCo:

I didn’t mean your adjectives exclusively. I was referring to the ones generally used to describe him.

So you took my post and used it to generalize???

Therein lies the problem. It’s all too convenient.

Disgusted

November 30th, 2010
9:31 am

But if I could have, for a reasonable sum, been able to load my van and dogs onto a train – say in a closed box car – AND been able to travel with them, it would have been a viable option.

Amen to that! I’m simply amazed that no entrepreneur has come up with a scheme whereby we can take our cars with us during train travel. In the present version of train travel, we’re still left without transportation once we reach our destination—unless we opt for extremely expensive car rentals.

Southern Comfort

November 30th, 2010
9:32 am

TaxPayer

Sounds like the ultimate conservative’s wet dream. :) So much for the middle class, though. There’s only room for two classes in the US, upper and lower. If you’re not upper class, that only leaves one choice…

Matti

November 30th, 2010
9:32 am

Mr. Bookman,

I disagree. I think Deal is going to be quite impressive!! He’s not only going to erase $4mil/debt on a $135K/yr salary in just four years, but he’s going to take it to the plus column in a BIG way! Furthermore, he’s going to do it with the *blessings* and *praise* of the people of Georgia, while not lifting so much as one corrupt pinky finger to solve any of the state’s problems.

These amazing feats are rivaled only by Wizards in great works of fiction!!! The people of Georgia DO love their fiction! Especially all the fiction in the steaming piles of poo shoveled their way by the Republicans and the dominant right-wing media. Yes, close your eyes while we drift backwards in time to a time of grace and plenty (for a handful of rich folks while everyone else suffered.) It was beautiful back then…. the Hollywood Libs told us so! … Ahhhh, good times.

TaxPayer

November 30th, 2010
9:32 am

I’ll drink to that!

I guess it’s never too early in Georgia.

TaxPayer

November 30th, 2010
9:35 am

Bob, get real. Republicans are in control here in Georgia so don’t try to blame the Dems or Obama for their failings.

AmVet

November 30th, 2010
9:36 am

4 more robo-calls yesterday. Every one of them from obsequious Republicans. Two of them from the consummate failures of governance – Sonny and Saxby.

A couple of earlier posts reminded me of the fact that I remember as a 15 year old thinking, what kind of pathetic putz would put a bumper sticker on his vehicle reading, “America, love it or leave it”?

As if *these* are the people who define who loves America? Or defines who is patriotic and who isn’t? Or determines who is a REAL American and who isn’t?

Sadly, 40 years on, it is apparent that very little has been learned in the ensuing four decades and that that kind of mindless mentality is still alive and well in certain segments of society…

A private sector employee

November 30th, 2010
9:36 am

You have the FACTS right, but the interpretation is all wrong.

Georgia cannot solve the water crisis. The Corps of Engineers had no right to make water deals with Georgia, and Georgia KNEW about that for the last 20 years. Georgia grabbed that water under DEMOCRATIC Governors and DEMOCRATIC leadership knowing full well that someday Georgia would be called to task for it. Alabama and Florida have not one single incentive to give up a drop of water to Georgia. The governor of Georgia has absolutely no power to resolve the situation other than begging.

Yes, there are budget shortfalls. But put in perspective, Georgia has one of the lowest debts of all 50 states. Depending on the study, Georgia is ranked between 7th and 18th in per capita debt (1st being the lowest per capita), Georgia is one of about a dozen states that still has an AAA bond rating. Overall, Georgia is not the best but Georgia is FAR from the worst.

And finally, Georgia’s transportation was hamstrung by a lack of funding and vision. Georgia is still recovering from the Democrat dominated DOT (Wayne Shackleford ring a bell?) and the all out sprawl that took Atlanta Metro by storm during the great 90’s expansion fueled by illegal water. These , again, were DEMOCRAT-sourced problems.

In short, Perdue was a mediocre Governor. But he was not responsible for the problems that you have suggested, Jay, and it is not within the Governor’s power to solve them.

Bosch

November 30th, 2010
9:37 am

I’m still gobsmacked that Nathan Deal was elected. The good conservatives of the state like to complain and bitch and moan about the state of affairs in this state, but they keep electing the same ideological nightmares. Which only shows that they, like the those of the Earl Grey persuasion, are incapable of connecting logical dots.

Doggone/GA

November 30th, 2010
9:39 am

” I’m simply amazed that no entrepreneur has come up with a scheme whereby we can take our cars with us during train travel.”

Especially since there are trucking companies that will move your car for you. But that’s not an option for me, because you can’t travel with your vehicle, and I doubt they would take a van with the dogs in it anyway.

Common Sense isn't very Common

November 30th, 2010
9:41 am

Of all the rapid transit systems I have ridden I like the DC Metro the best. Clean (little or no graffiti) , well patrolled and on time. Hard to beat that.

Atlanta’s Marta on the other hand has been piecemealed over the years to the point where the rails go to where the jobs aren’t.

Bob

November 30th, 2010
9:42 am

Taxpayer, why do you have to make things up to help your argument, I never mentioned Obama and never said I had compassion. You really think repubs running the state hired Bev Hall ?
“And quit tryin’ to blame Obama for what Georgia’s elected ones are doin’. To hear some of you compassionate conservatives talk, one might get the impression that Obama comes down here to Georgia and twists each one of your arms”. Taxpayer, I blame the APS officials, Obama had nothing to do with Hall claiming dropouts were actually tranfers so the graduation rate looked better, it was a scam. Why do need need to lie about what was in my post, read it again and show me where I mentioned Obama. You proved my post to be correct, APS is and has been democrat/liberal controlled for over 100 years, you blamed the good old boy repubs.

SOUTHERN ATL

November 30th, 2010
9:44 am

Jay,
It puzzles me why it is NOT illegal when a candidate that is elected under a particular party decides to switch to the opposite party. Is there a recall for this? If someone is running as a Republican and switches to the Democratic Party, it is unfair to the constituents that actually elected them. There is no fair balance in this.

@@

November 30th, 2010
9:45 am

Taxpayer:

You’re obviously a Krugman fan. Whether you like it or not, The Roadmap Lives!!!

Even Democrats are getting on board.

The fundamental elements of the Ryan Roadmap are sweeping tax reform; changes in health care which emphasize a marketplace and consumer choice; and modifications to retirement programs that reflect demographic reality. All of these elements can now be found in budget plans endorsed by prominent Democrats, including Democrats the president himself turned to find solutions to the nation’s budget problems. Consequently, it will be much harder in the future for Democrats to demonize these ideas as they have tried to do in the past.

Paul Ryan took the courageous step of going first with a bold plan to fundamentally restructure the tax and entitlement policies that threaten to push the federal budget past the breaking point. Now others, even some from the other side of the aisle, are joining him in sponsoring similar plans. The Roadmap does indeed live on.

Politicians who are willing to face the harsh realities.

I YIKE IT!!!

Mary Elizabeth

November 30th, 2010
9:49 am

Nofreecheese 8:39 a.m.

Thank you first of all for the compliment, but I must say that having taught in DeKalb county schools for almost 30 years, in both predominately white and black schools during that time, and having substituted in approximately ten diversified in population North Fulton Country schools until 2007, I have been witness to quality teachers in both school areas over decades. Of course, there are always some poor teachers, as in every field, but they are rare.

I prefer to speak from my experiences. To serve ALL of the children of this state, there would have to be so many private schools that many, if not most, would be educationally unsophisticated in instructional techniques and in knowledge of childhood development.

In the 1970s, I tutored two boys who were my relatives and who were a year behind in their reading skills as 3rd grade students. They were working in groups on second grade reading skills in third grade. That summer, their parents took them out of their public school and put them in a religious based private school. Since I was a reading specialist by then, I asked their parents if I could test them and instruct them for a week. They actually tested on general 4th grade reading levels although their skills were on second grade levels. I worked with them under the auspices of their public schools, i.e. their tests, books, programs, etc. The children improved one-half of a year in a week’s time of individualized instruction of 8 hours a day sessions, targeted exactly to their skill needs.

They reentered public schools that August one-half of a year behind, instead of one full year behind, in skills. By the end of their fifth grade year, they were on grade level. They graduated from high school with their peers and went on to become college graduates. Both are now professional men with families. They often thank me for changing the course of their lives, not only in skills, but in their self-confidence, which also helped them to succeed.

The teachers and administrators in the private, religious school that my relatives were going to in the summer after their third grade year meant well, but they had NOT A CLUE as to how to help my relatives with precision and with any impact. In fact, had my young relatives stayed in the private school, they probably would have regressed because of the lack of educational knowledge in that religious based private school.

Those who propose turning Georgia’s schools into all private schools instead of public ones are not educators and they do not know from which they speak. Their opinions are based basically on generalized, rigidly held ideological beliefs to the detriment of the school children of this state.

Massive enrollment of Georgia’s children in private schools will further segregate our children – by class not by race.

The Wall Street Journal to which you refer is owned by Rupert Murdoch, the same owner of FOX News, although I know that the WSJ does have some worthy, unbiased articles. Nevertheless, readers should be aware of the owner’s intent. Study Murdoch’s history as a newspaper man, from his ventures in the English press, to know what his ideological intent has been, in addition to making money.

One of the purposes of government is to serve the “common good” of all; that is what makes government workers “public servants.” I will look forward to the time in the future when “common good” is seen, again, in the eyes of Americans as a value to be held in esteem by our nation. In that coming day, young people will enter education to be “public servants” and will be respected by the populace as such. Money is not all.

Jack

November 30th, 2010
9:53 am

These Tuesday morning quarterbacks ought to run for governor.

larry

November 30th, 2010
9:54 am

In late January 2010, Ryan released a new version of his “Roadmap.”[13] It would give across the board tax cuts by reducing income tax rates; eliminating income taxes on capital gains, dividends, and interest; and abolishing the corporate income tax, the estate tax, and the alternative minimum tax. The plan would privatize a portion of Social Security,[14][15] eliminate the tax exclusion for employer-sponsored health insurance,[15] and end traditional Medicare and most of Medicaid.[14][15]. The plan would replace these health programs with a system of vouchers whose value would decrease over time.[15]

Looks like just another plan to kick the middle class in the teeth ,as usual . What would you expect from a repub.

Shawny

November 30th, 2010
9:55 am

Perdue is brining in the HOT lane conversion to I-85. I wonder how much of a kickback he is getting from that. It is a system that we do not need, and is another toll collecting boondoggle that drives the WRONG behavior instead of doing what is needed in reducing the number of cars on the road.

USinUK

November 30th, 2010
9:58 am

dumbcrkr

November 30th, 2010
9:58 am

Jack

Sonny was a joke and Nate won’t be any better.

Jefferson

November 30th, 2010
9:59 am

The GOP has never done anything for the working people of Georgia. The rich get richer, the poor have babies.

larry

November 30th, 2010
9:59 am

Shawny

November 30th, 2010
9:55 am

I agree wholeheartly. And look how many times the taxpayer has payed for this.

Once, to build I-85
Twice, to build the HOV lane
Third , to install the HOT lane
Fourth, to travel in the HOT lane.

Bosch

November 30th, 2010
10:00 am

“Massive enrollment of Georgia’s children in private schools will further segregate our children – by class not by race.”

That needs to be branded on the butts of all conservatives who think that privatization of everything is the panacea to all woes.

It would also set back our education system to the time when only the wealthy could afford it.

Bosch

November 30th, 2010
10:02 am

Hi USinUK,

Yummy! I’ve passed your blog onto several of me friends and my sisters (who think “cooking” is opening a box of Hamburger Helper or Kraft Mac ‘n’ Cheese — weird how siblings who grew up in the same house with the same mother doing the same things in the kitchen can be so different in their culinary skills and tastes).

TaxPayer

November 30th, 2010
10:04 am

So, how many years do Republicans have to be in charge here in Georgia before the compassionate, or otherwise, conservatives accept responsibility for their own failings. And as for those DEMOCRATS that were in charge before the Republicans took charge, they’re the same people with a different label. I simply choose to refer to them by their current label, “R”. Deal and Perdue were both former Democrats serving here in Georgia so proclaiming that our problems were borne of the Democrats is actually no different than saying that they were borne of the current Republicans.

Common Sense isn't very Common

November 30th, 2010
10:05 am

The south made the front page of the NYT online today ‘Celebrating Secession Without the Slaves’
with a picture from the Cyclorama.

I wonder if Sonny has got Dec 20th set aside as a state holiday to mark the 150th anniversary of secession, hope the Tea Party don’t get an idea in their heads to do it again.

TaxPayer

November 30th, 2010
10:07 am

It would also set back our education system to the time when only the wealthy could afford it

You post that as though you believe that to be in direct contradiction of compassionate conservative goals. Or at least that’s the way it comes across.

Matti

November 30th, 2010
10:09 am

TaxPayer @ 10:04,

That’s never going to happen. As long as they have “liberals, gays, blacks, atheists, Obama, and welfare grandmas” to pin their failings on, they’ll continue to trash the state, enrich only themselves, and take no responsibility whatsoever. “Personal Responsibility” is only an advertising slogan, not meant to be taken literally in their own careers.

Halftrack

November 30th, 2010
10:11 am

Gov. Purdue ruined the GDOT. It is now a 2 Headed department. In this two heads are not better than one. A real reformation of the GDOT is still in order. We need to go back to a One Dept Head Organization. The highway board needs competent people and not politicians that favor special interest. Recently the AJC had an article that GDOT was getting 350 million in fed. dollars and they didn’t know how to use the money. See what an awkward situation that our Legislators and Gov. have created.

Normal

November 30th, 2010
10:15 am

dumbcrkr

November 30th, 2010
9:58 am

But the joke’s on us…both times…