Your daily jolt: Max Cleland on putting two Vietnam vets in charge of U.S. foreign policy

Over the weekend, the liberal website Talking Points Memo caught up with former U.S. senator Max Cleland, who declared himself thrilled with prospect of two Vietnam veterans in charge of formulating and implementing American foreign policy.

Former U.S. senator Max Cleland of Georgia/AJC file

Former U.S. senator Max Cleland of Georgia/AJC file

President Barack Obama is expected to nominate former Nebraska senator Chuck Hagel for secretary of defense today. He’s already nominated Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry as a replacement for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Said Cleland:

“Look at John Kerry and Chuck Hagel, two wounded combat veterans of the Vietnam War. They’ve got five purple hearts between them. That’s the kind of people we want withdrawing from Afghanistan and ending this insane war and occupation and focusing the country on using the American military to stay out war, but if we get in war to win war and win it quickly,” he said.

Cleland said the pair will bring harmony to the civilian and military sides of American foreign policy.

“I see them as the perfect dynamic duo — Batman and Robin, Salt and Pepper, Tom and Jerry. Whatever you want to call it, instead of State and DoD fighting each other all the time as is historically the case, I see them hand-in-glove together,” he said. The two “share a common background,” he added. “They have both been shot at and hit.”

***
At the Saturday morning meeting of the Cobb Republican party, a state Republican lawmaker floated an idea for ending the debate of the hospital “bed tax” before it begins – by shutting down Medicaid. From the Marietta Daily Journal:

State Sen. Barry Loudermilk of Cassville, who will represent some of the Highway 92 area in north Cobb in the upcoming legislative session, said he recently talked with a Georgia Department of Transportation board member who expressed interest in a proposal to have the state control all the fuel taxes it issues and spends.

“There are no federal taxes that go for it, that’s what we need to be looking at,” Loudermilk said to applause, while dropping in quotes from Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin. “I’ll take it a step further: we need to start in the direction to where we don’t have a Medicaid system, but we turn it back to the way it was before Medicaid, where there were nonprofit hospitals that provided indigent care to the people, that were run by churches and religious organizations. As soon as Medicaid came into being, they went away. They saw a way of becoming a profitable institution by government funding.”

***
And yet, another Republican state senator is of a very different mind when it comes to government involvement. In a weekly newspaper column and message to constituents, Buddy Carter of Pooler endorsed the proposal to tear down the Georgia Dome and build a new one – with a retractable roof. In part:

A couple of things are lost in the shuffle here. First of all keep in mind that the original Dome was built with 100 percent public funds. The new stadium deal is a public-private partnership, with the private sector bearing more than two-thirds of the cost.

And just like the original Georgia Dome, the new stadium will be owned by the State. Only this time the state will not be responsible for capital expenditures, instead we will be guaranteed $2.5 million per year with an annual two percent increase for the next 30 years.

But what about the Falcons and their billionaire owner- won’t they be getting a good deal too? Yes, if everything goes as planned they will — in economic development that’s referred to as a win-win situation.

***
Tuesday will bring three special elections for legislative contests in north metro Atlanta and south Georgia – just in time for the Jan. 14 opening of the January session of the General Assembly.

Of the trio, the hottest is the contest to fill the Senate seat vacated by Chip Rogers of Woodstock, who left to take a job with Georgia Public Broadcasting after losing a fight to retain his position as majority leader. From the Woodstock Patch:

The race, hotly contested between Holly Springs resident Sean Jerguson and North Fulton Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Brandon Beach, is the source of nearly $50,000 in contributions made in its short life span of one month.

Over at Atlanta Unfiltered, Jim Walls has dinged both Senate candidates. First one:

When Brandon Beach ran for the Senate in 2010, he raised $13,600 to be spent on the general election once he became the Republican nominee. He didn’t make it that far, though, losing a primary runoff by a thin margin.

State law requires candidates to refund contributions raised for an election in which they’re not on the ballot. Beach’s campaign kept those donations in his campaign account, using some for expenses and rolling the rest over to his 2012 race. State law may allow some of that money to be reallocated after the fact to cover 2010 primary or runoff expenses, but at least $8,400 could not be redesignated since it came from donors who had reached contribution limits for those races.

Then the other:

Financial disclosures filed by Sean Jerguson during his six years as a state representative listed ownership interests in several businesses but omitted more than $1 million worth of real estate that they own. Those properties include the site of his Cherokee County shooting range, which it bought from another of his businesses with the help of a federally-guaranteed loan, and a Cedartown mobile home park owned with partners that is perpetually late paying its property taxes.

Meanwhile, a last word from Rogers comes in the form of his final column for Townlaker, a local community magazine that never says a bad word about anyone:

It has been an honor to be part of this publication. In today’s world, where journalism is a dead art and sensationalism laced with negativity has become the accepted form of “so-called”news reporting, it is nice to be associated with a magazine that focuses on positive stories with the purpose of being both informational and uplifting.

***
Amid three races and a total of 12 candidates on Tuesday, you’ll find only one Democrat. She’s Natalie Bergeron, a 41-year-old attorney in the House District 21 race – to replace Sean Jerguson, who’s attempting to make the leap to the state Senate.

Three Republicans are on the ballot. Over the weekend, Rashad Richey, political director for the state Democratic party, declared in an email to party members that the contest has the makings of an upset:

There is a state house race that will be decided this Tuesday in a ruby red area of the state. And with several Republicans and only one Democrat in the race, we can win if A) the Republicans split their votes between several candidates and B) we get every Democrat to vote for Natalie Bergeron.

That has led Scot Turner to urge his two Republican rivals – Brian Laurens and Kenneth Mimbs — to fold up their tents and go home early. The prospect of Democrats in Cherokee County is just too terrible to contemplate:

“Democrats are trying to steal a seat that they wouldn’t normally have the opportunity to compete for going into the final weekend of this special election. The Georgia Democratic Party has sent out an email blast to its entire statewide network encouraging members to contribute financially and volunteer for the democrat opposition’s campaign. If this race goes to a runoff, the likelihood that the Democratic Political machine will come to Cherokee County en masse becomes a real possibility. Cherokee County doesn’t need this; the time to unite is now.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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78 comments Add your comment

Aesop's Fables and other Lib Economic Theories

January 7th, 2013
10:34 am

Do the democrats even know where Cherokee County is?

southpaw

January 7th, 2013
10:39 am

Look for more Tom & Jerry than Batman & Robin. Or maybe we can expect to see Abbott & Costello. Or Laurel & Hardy.

Aesop's Fables and other Lib Economic Theories

January 7th, 2013
10:43 am

Let’s see if we can get this all straightened out, Hagel is a homophobic anti Semite who doesn’t have enough democrat votes to get confirmed, Kerry demanded Purple Hearts for wounds that were treated with a band aid using the third such award to bailout of his commitment 9 months early, treasoned against his fellow soldiers, is enshrined in the Hanoi Victory Museum and fought in Vietnam in case you haven’t heard, and Cleland threw a grenade at himself, scoring a direct hit.

And we’re supposed to be excited about all this?

curious

January 7th, 2013
10:53 am

Aesop should be banned as simply someone totally without class.

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
10:55 am

aesops

nobody is braver than chickenhawks like yourself..bet u wouldnt make it through basic training..

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
10:56 am

curious

why do rightwingers hate the veterans so much

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
11:01 am

now the homophobic bigoted gop pretends to care about gay rights in regards to Hagel…but we know thats just a smokescreen, Hagel is looked on as being anti-semitic….translation; he doesnt kiss the jews behinds like the rest of the rightwingers

Cherokee

January 7th, 2013
11:07 am

What curious said. Aesop, you’re just contemptible. it’s one thing to disagree with a guy politically; quite another to just make up lies about him.

yuzeyurbrane

January 7th, 2013
11:10 am

What happened to the Democrat who initially filed for State Senate District 11 race? She is no longer on Elections Division list.

Buymadeinusjobs

January 7th, 2013
11:13 am

Do you want your social security benefits, veterans benefits, medicare, medicaid, tricare [Republican demanded spending cuts in entitlements] taken away from us the American people to pay for more wars, excessive defense spending which makes weathy/their corporations/government contractors big money at seniors/disabled/veterans disadvantage,

I got a blood test this morning, most folks were using medicare/tricare to pay and keep the civilian lab in business employing workers, the same is true of staff at doctors office.

I hope Mr. Hagel gets confirmed, he is independent and that is why war mongers like Lindsay Graham, Bolton, Mccain and others are worried,

All of us have said things about gays and others that we have regretted, he said he was sorry.

Most of the objections are because he knows what war really is about and will do everything else before getting us in another Iraq and the sooner he can get our men out of Afgan, the better, .

They are being killed by the people they are supposed to train. The money going there can stay here.
Ask veterans how long they are waiting for claim processing because congress has not allowed more money for increasing number of vets due to war/illnesses.
Ryan’s 2011 budget which all republicans in senate and house voted for cut 17 billion from veterans programs. check c-span

curious

January 7th, 2013
11:13 am

Right wingers don’t hate veterans.

A veteran did the work, but now that they’re finished, the right wing has no use for them, so why support them?

The right wing motto. “What have you done for me lately”

Buymadeinusjobs

January 7th, 2013
11:13 am

Do you want your social security benefits, veterans benefits, medicare, medicaid, tricare [Republican demanded spending cuts in entitlements] taken away from us the American people to pay for more wars, excessive defense spending which makes weathy/their corporations/government contractors big money at seniors/disabled/veterans disadvantage,

I got a blood test this morning, most folks were using medicare/tricare to pay and keep the civilian lab in business employing workers, the same is true of staff at doctors office.

I hope Mr. Hagel gets confirmed, he is independent and that is why war mongers like Lindsay Graham, Bolton, Mccain and others are worried,

All of us have said things about gays and others that we have regretted, he said he was sorry.

Most of the objections are because he knows what war really is about and will do everything else before getting us in another Iraq and the sooner he can get our men out of Afgan, the better, .

They are being killed by the people they are supposed to train. The money going there can stay here.
Ask veterans how long they are waiting for claim processing because congress has not allowed more money for increasing number of vets due to war/illnesses.
Ryan’s 2011 budget which all republicans in senate and house voted for cut 17 billion from veterans programs. check c-span

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

January 7th, 2013
11:15 am

Good to see the tory Talmuist traitor against true Zion, America, drawn from cover: those without honor object to those with It.

A

January 7th, 2013
11:15 am

Let’s get Max back to the U.S. Senate…Neither Isakson nor Chambliss are doing much over there.

Buymadeinusjobs

January 7th, 2013
11:16 am

Do you want your social security benefits, veterans benefits, medicare, medicaid, tricare [Republican demanded spending cuts in entitlements] taken away from us the American people to pay for more wars, excessive defense spending which makes weathy/their corporations/government contractors big money at seniors/disabled/veterans disadvantage,
I hope Mr. Hagel gets confirmed, he is independent and that is why war mongers like Lindsay Graham, Bolton, Mccain and others are worried,

All of us have said things about gays and others that we have regretted, he said he was sorry.

Most of the objections are because he knows what war really is about and will do everything else before getting us in another Iraq and the sooner he can get our men out of Afgan, the better, .

They are being killed by the people they are supposed to train. The money going there can stay here.
Ask veterans how long they are waiting for claim processing because congress has not allowed more money for increasing number of vets due to war/illnesses.
Ryan’s 2011 budget which all republicans in senate and house voted for cut 17 billion from veterans programs. check c-span

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

January 7th, 2013
11:19 am

False Zionists want we “stupid” “goyim” of Zion as their “golem.” True Jews love G-d and know America is the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy of the New Israel. Our Founders knew it, too.

honested

January 7th, 2013
11:25 am

Senator Cleland identifies a clear reason why the republican wrong will oppose Senator Kerry and Senator Hagel……

They will be effective at winding down our pointless involvement in Afghanistan, rather than inventing reasons to perpetuate the enormous waste of blood and treasure.

Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:26 am

Amazing how obama was able to secure the Hispanic vote for re-election, especially the families of the Hispanics, here’s the truth on what obama thinks about them: “Government spent about $18 billion on immigration enforcement programs, Immigration enforcement topped the combined budgets of the FBI; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; Drug Enforcement Administration and U.S. Secret Service.

Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:29 am

The latest for you liberals who think the White House and Democrats did such a good job:

President Obama signed a last-minute deal crafted by the Senate and finally passed by the Republican-controlled House that avoided tax increases for most middle-class earners. But the agreement failed to cut the country’s estimated $16.4 trillion debt or resolve other major fiscal concerns..

Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:31 am

Liberal alert for welfare:

Welfare recipients took out cash at bars, liquor stores, X-rated video shops, hookah parlors and even strip clubs — where they presumably spent their taxpayer money on lap dances rather than diapers.

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
11:33 am

voter

now youre mad that the president is deporting lawbreakers?..maybe hispanics want the illegals sent back…..

Georgia Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:34 am

I wonder what Brian Laurens and Kenneth Mimbs thought of Laurens’ request. Have they given any response?

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
11:35 am

voter

how do u know what welfare recepients spent their money on, unless youre one of them…lol..

Retired Soldier

January 7th, 2013
11:41 am

Why does it take two Vietnam veterans, one of which has a dubious military past, to get the United States out of the “insane war” in Afghanistan?

I agree we should have been out a long time ago but that is no reason to have these two terrible guys running Defense and State. Could Obama pick anyone that will hurt America more than Kerry and Hagel?

Marlboro Man

January 7th, 2013
11:41 am

How can they have this year’s super bowl in that old SuperDome in NO, that has had deaths inside, remodeled and has a fixed roof ? Why don’t they use all the “new” stadiums like Atlanta insists on ?

Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:42 am

@liberallefty – I didn’t say I was mad. I’m all for immigrants following the rules and coming over legally and those that don’t go back, I’m all for enforcement. All I’m saying I was amazed how the Hispanics believed and voted obama, because he was going to help them when in fact he was trying to deport them. lol.. I find that ironic.

Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:44 am

@liberallefty – how do u know what welfare recepients spent their money on, unless youre one of them…lol..

That’s funny. No, actually I have been unemployed twice, supporting my children and ex-wife, not 1 dime have I ever took from welfare, not even food stamps. ( And I could have qualified easily)

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
11:44 am

The hypocrtical LOG CABIN REPUBLICANS took out a full page ad in the NYT criticizing HAGELs’ stance on gays. Yet these morons supported ROMNEY who wanted to deny them the right to marry. WHy do the LCR support a party that denies them basic human rights?

Newt is nuts

January 7th, 2013
11:47 am

Jim, why do you think your column attracts so many wingnuts?

Newt is nuts

January 7th, 2013
11:47 am

Jim, why do you think your column attracts so many wingnuts?

Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:48 am

@Retired Soldier – What?! John Kerry a dubious military past??

Wasn’t he the one that received 3 Purple Hearts all of sudden and left Vietnam?

Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:50 am

@liberallefty – WHy do the LCR support a party that denies them basic human rights?

What basic human right? It is NOT a basic human right for gays to marry.

Retired Soldier

January 7th, 2013
11:50 am

Exactly Voter, plus Silvers Stars many years later. What a guy.

Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:53 am

Kerry, incredible. Perfect obama nominee.

curious

January 7th, 2013
11:53 am

“Could Obama pick anyone that will hurt America more than Kerry and Hagel?”

Any specifics on how they will hurt America?

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
11:57 am

retired soldier

like all rightwingers no matter who OBAMA picked u were gonna whine about it…typical gop…

Voter

January 7th, 2013
11:57 am

@curious – Any specifics on how they will hurt America?

How about ethics or morals? When you put your faith in someone who has no moral or ethical foundation, how can you trust them to do a job when it really counts? Look at what happened in Benghazi.

Retired Soldier

January 7th, 2013
12:00 pm

curious-

Sure, in my opinion Kerry was disloyal and should have been arrested for lying to Congress when he appeared about made up war crimes. Plus he is one of the most liberal senators in Congress and was rejected by the American people in 2004.

Hagel is a gadfly and no republican. He has made many anti-Israel comments and did nothing during his time in the Senate to show he was capable of this level of appointment.

Retired Soldier

January 7th, 2013
12:02 pm

LL-

Not true, had no problem with his former CIA cheif, current defense sec or the current state Dept sec.

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
12:02 pm

voter

gays do have a basic right to get married…just because a bigot dont agree with it doesnt mean its not their right..

Aesop's Fables and other Lib Economic Theories

January 7th, 2013
12:02 pm

I’m not the one parading these guys around like they’re some battle hardened war heroes. If you libs need an example of what I’m talking about, look to the Benghazi debacle, those are war heroes who you democrats abandoned. I don’t see you shedding many tears over them. You don’t even have the guts to say their names.

curious

January 7th, 2013
12:03 pm

Any specifics on ethics and morals?

Just because you don’t like someone doesn’y mean they have ethics or moral issues.

So how are they going to hurt the Country?

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
12:05 pm

aesops

well u can shed all the tears u want…did u shed tears for the 9/11 fiasco when BUSH couldnt defend america?…

Voter

January 7th, 2013
12:07 pm

@Retired Soldier – Good points on Kerry and Hagel.

Of course, since the man that appointed them wasn’t capable of that level of appointment either, it makes perfect sense. Ironic

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
12:07 pm

curious

anybody OBAMA picked the bigoted rightwing was going to oppose…thats SOP for the gop

Weetamoe

January 7th, 2013
12:08 pm

Poor stonedorfragged Max is yanked out of obscurity only to be exploited by his fellow democrats. I’ll never forget the sight of him dropped off at the gate of the Bush Texas ranch with a note he was ordered to deliver. I thought he was still sitting at the gate.

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
12:09 pm

voter

well at least OBAMA wouldnt let a terrorist murder 3000 americans like dubya did…lol

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
12:11 pm

more whining from the rightwing…if they arent whining they arent breathing..

curious

January 7th, 2013
12:13 pm

Retired Soldier and Voter.

Still not very specific.

kerry’s testimony to Congress:

“I would like to talk, representing all those veterans, and say that several months ago in Detroit, we had an investigation at which over 150 honorably discharged and many very highly decorated veterans testified to war crimes committed in Southeast Asia, not isolated incidents but crimes committed on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command….

They told the stories at times they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war, and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country.”

Not something we want said about ourselves, but more accurate than not.

liberalefty

January 7th, 2013
12:14 pm

oh no CHUCK HAGEL dont believe IUREEL is gods chosen people…he doesnt believe in the biblical fairytales that dominate rightwing agenda.. lol