Thinking Right’s weekend free-for-all. Pick a topic:
● With the Obama Administration official who counts jobs saved or created through the $787 billion “stimulus” spending (24,681 of them in Georgia) tallying the votes … And, with ACORN registering country music fans … This news leaks across the Internet: President Barack Obama has defeated Kenny Chesney, Taylor Swift, Keith Urban, George Strait and Brad Paisley to win Entertainer of the Year, the top award in country music. The Country Music Awards will be handed out next Wednesday.
● Last November, Americans voted for “change.” This November they vote again for change. Voters are concerned about jobs and the economy. Congress and the administration, determined to push their own agendas on health care, cap-and-tax, and control of business — as they did on stimulus spending — didn’t listen. And aren’t now, even after dramatic losses in gubernatorial contests in Virginia and New Jersey.
● Flood maps in Metro Atlanta are flawed, despite a five-year effort and an expenditure of $32.7 million to modernize the state’s floodplain maps. Changes as significant as a bridge or as small as a culvert can alter water flow, making even the latest maps unreliable. And yet, huge numbers of people believe that thousands of bits of information fed into computer programs can accurately predict global warming.
● Unionists never learn. The United Auto Workers helped to bankrupt Chrysler and GM — and given a chance they’ll do the same for Ford. The UAW’s rank-and-file overwhelmingly rejected contract changes that would bring Ford’s labor costs in line with GM and Chrysler. After doing its part to drive Chrysler and GM into the ground, the UAW was rewarded with a 55 percent stake in Chrysler and 17.5 percent stake in GM. Ford, a free-enterprise company, is the UAW’s competitor.
● The city of Atlanta may need more police on the force and it does need more on the streets. But no mayor and no police chief and no level of staffing can secure neighborhoods where men sit waiting in a van in the Sylvan Hills area of southwest Atlanta for two days for murder-target Dionta Browning and nobody bothers to get a tag number or inform police. Sure enough, Browning showed up — and was promptly shot dead. Thirty-one shell casings were found at the scene.
● Former Gov. Roy Barnes, now a candidate for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, says he won’t take campaign contributions from lobbyists. In previous runs for governor, he’s taken loads. Frankly, I think money is only one form of currency in politics. Endorsements, phone banks, special interest get-out-the-vote drives and other vote-producing activities are sometimes better and more effective than money. The money, at least, is transparent.
● Sure the special interests howl and rush to spin stories to the media about how the Earth will revert to the Ice Age if modest cuts are made in the programs they favor. But give Gov. Sonny Perdue and legislators credit for taking the responsible steps necessary to preserve Georgia’s triple-A bond rating. Yes, more cuts are coming. It takes strong and disciplined leaders to stand up to the kind of pressure that politicians are now getting. With undisciplined politicians buying political peace from constituency groups, Georgia could be in the city of Atlanta’s perilous financial condition.
● With the AARP endorsement of the $1.2 trillion health care bill seniors who are not of the gimme and grow-government variety should consider switching membership to the Alpharetta-based American Seniors Association (ASA), which already represents hundreds of thousands nationwide. Since August, 16,000 seniors have left AARP, which ASA President Stuart Barton calls “a behind-the-scenes Obamacare cheerleader.”