Cool down with a fan and iced tea
Thinking Right’s weekend free-for-all. Pick a topic:
- I agree with President Barack Obama. What? No lightning strikes me down? On his nomination of U.S. District Court Judge Beverly Martin to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, we are in agreement. She is, as he said, “a first rate jurist with unflagging integrity and evenhandedness.”
- More worries for taxpayers and their grandchildren: The government agency that pays the pensions of 44 million workers who were employed in failed businesses reports a deficit of $33.5 billion, triple the deficit reported six months ago.
- More worries, too, for the kiddies: By 2030, the number of U.S. residents over 65 will jump from 13 percent to 20 percent. The world’s elderly population is growing at twice the rate of the general population, reports the D.C.-based Center for Strategic and International Studies. Hide the piggy banks. Congress plans a stick-up.
- Change gushes through Washington and creeps through Georgia. But, still, it’s a grand day for education reform when the state’s Charter Schools Commission approves its first two schools — Ivy Preparatory Academy of Norcross and Charter Conservatory for Liberal Arts and Technology in Statesboro. The important new element is that both schools get state funds equal to the local share.
- In the spirit of good liberals everywhere in public office, eight members of Atlanta City Council agonize, wring their hands and “step up to the plate” to face the prospect that politicians want to spend $541 million and are $56 million shy. Cut? No. They raise taxes by an average of $240 per homeowner. And then and forever more, beg for a state bailout. It’s not their fault.
- Within hours of winning the Miss Georgia crown, Kristina Higgins of Duluth decided she’d rather teach special education. Admirable. But unfair to the second-place finisher, Emily Cook, who gets the hand-me-down crown. Some things in life can’t be anticipated. Winning a contest you’ve entered can be.
- President Obama may not have been too quick to react to the Russian invasion of the Republic of Georgia or the bogus election in Iran, but he’s on top of the situation in Honduras, where the elected president was deposed for trying to thwart the Constitution. He’s either a slow study or fast to firmness on international affairs that don’t much affect our national security.
- The reaction to the discrimination against firefighters who scored highest on promotion exams in New Haven, Conn., and then saw the city yank promotions because whites scored disproportionately higher, is as expected. It’s contained in one AJC headline: “Written tests may lose favor.” When test results don’t yield the results desired, get rid of them so the discrimination can be hidden. That’s the rule of bureaucrats and politicians who want to cheat legally.
- Bad news for conservatives. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pushed through a monstrosity of hidden taxes in the cap-and-trade legislation with the help of eight Republicans from blue states. In the Senate, the Dems are on the verge of having a filibuster-proof majority, with the arrival of comedian Al Franken from Minnesota. And, of course, they can always count on two or three Republican crossovers. Not good for containing the Obama over-reach.
- Some politicians are overexposed while in office. Former Gainesville Mayor Mark Musselwhite was overexposed after he left. A Department of Natural Resources ranger found him sitting naked in the summer heat at a Rabun County campsite. Ice tea and a funeral home fan would have been my recommendations.
- President Obama says the energy tax bill that passed the House with too little attention on the day that Michael Jackson died will cost the average American about the price of a postage stamp per day. Everybody who believes that has probably already spent the children’s inheritance on Billy Mays’ infomercials.