Atlanta mayor needs iron will on benefits

Thinking Right’s weekend free-for-all. Pick a topic:

● Wal-Mart lost me by its Stockholm-syndrome support of “Obamacare” legislation. But the company is, nevertheless, a reminder that the left will destroy any successful business it can’t control. In fact, President Barack Obama’s profession of belief in a free market in New York was followed by this interpretation of how it really works: “A free market,” he said a week ago, “was never meant to be a free license to take whatever you can get, however you can get it.” He was referring to Wall Street, but that’s the left’s view of Wal-Mart, too. The company this week was exposed to billions of dollars by the left-leaning 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco over allegations of pay discrimination. The suit, now a class action headed to trial, was filed by six women in 2001.

● The National Association of Business Economics polled 68 of its members who have economics-related jobs in the private sector and asked whether the $862 billion “stimulus” had any value whatsoever as far as their company’s employment. About 73 percent said no. (This mistake was in asking private-sector economists and the like. The question should have been directed to the public sector and its unions and to the Obama administration. Their answer is, of course, yes.)

● The Associated Press confirms what you already knew about the purported savings from efficiencies and the elimination of waste and fraud in Medicare. Reports the AP: “While the law creates a commission to keep pursuing deeper Medicare savings, there’s no overall cost control strategy.” No strategy, no cost control.

● A DeKalb County study demonstrates why conservatives should never succeed in building financial reserves sufficient to smooth out the economic cycles. A Georgia State University study finds that DeKalb has 909 more employees, mostly redundant managers, than counties of roughly similar size, like Gwinnett and Cobb. This study would never have been done, nor would elected officials be disposed to act, had the money continued to flow.

● The most important thing Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed ever will do for his city and for Georgia is to succeed in the mission he promises: to reduce benefits for city employees to the level of a decade ago. He surely must know that most every public employee in Georgia, including a sizeable chunk of the state’s judiciary, will oppose him. If he succeeds here, reformers can succeed everywhere. It’s the equivalent of trying to move Stone Mountain. Reed will need iron will and an array of smart, aggressive lawyers.

● Is it 35 years already since the fall of Saigon? No people more deserve the freedoms that America affords than the refugees who came after Vietnam’s fall. This nation can never fully compensate them for our failure to honor our commitment to their freedom.

● Yes to all: Put Ronald Reagan on the $50 bill. Let Sandra Bullock and Jesse James go. Tune out the SCLC and its recurring little power squabbles, too. Georgia has good roads, as a national interest group asserts; building and maintaining them is one of the things government does proficiently and where public spending produces the desired results.

● States should more aggressively challenge the opinions of federal bureaucrats thought to have a political agenda, as Secretary of State Brian Kemp proposes in seeking to uphold Georgia’s right to verify citizenship of those who register to vote. Attorney General Thurbert Baker won’t sue the U.S. Justice Department over its failure to grant clearance for the law.

● Carter’s Inc., the Atlanta maker of baby clothes, reports a 150 percent increase in sales in the first quarter. No surprise. Both grandmothers of my acquaintance were shopping

53 comments Add your comment

Rafe Hollister

April 29th, 2010
8:53 pm

Jim, I hope we don’t do to the people of iraq and Afghanistan what we did to the people of South Vietnam.

Lawrence

April 29th, 2010
8:56 pm

I agree with everything you said. One of your best.

Michael H. Smith

April 29th, 2010
9:07 pm

States should more aggressively challenge the opinions of federal bureaucrats thought to have a political agenda, as Secretary of State Brian Kemp proposes in seeking to uphold Georgia’s right to verify citizenship of those who register to vote. Attorney General Thurbert Baker won’t sue the U.S. Justice Department over its failure to grant clearance for the law.

Agreed.

While we’re in the demanding mood we need to get rid of more than a few federal departments and agencies that employ these bureaucrats. Reducing the size of the public trough cuts down the on costs of federal feed.

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Jon

April 29th, 2010
10:29 pm

New week, same verse: WAAAAAAAAA!

Mid-South Philosopher

April 29th, 2010
10:45 pm

Good evening, Jim,

Of all the words, I’ve heard of late…the kindly prose, the verses bright…
the sweetest words to caress my ears…that gentle phrase…”Sine die!”

Peter

April 29th, 2010
11:41 pm

Jim the most important story is about the oil spill…….nice job avoiding the obvious…..

get out much?

April 30th, 2010
12:06 am

Naturally, I am sure Mr. Wooten would be the first to point out that no child of any Walmart employee gets their health care through SCHIP ….

I see Mr. Wooten still does not understand the first rule of holes (when you are in one, stop digging) by his comments about Vietnam.

I find it interesting that Mr. Wooten first proposes to replace President Grant (the winning General) on the $50 bill and then follows it with with an subtle attack on the Voters Right Act. News flash, the Civil War is over, the South lost.

Rick

April 30th, 2010
2:37 am

I don’t recall you being this critical of the disastrous economic policies of the Bush Administration nor the wasteful spending in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Just like all so called ‘conservatives’ and ‘defenders of the Constitution’, you’re hypocrisy is absolutely dreadful. You’re so caught up in the left vs. right debate that you forget this dichotomy was created by the very controlling corporate interests that lobby to keep the system rigged to their advantage. There is only *one* party in this country and it’s the corporate party. And they have bought and paid for both sides of the aisle whether you like to admit it or not.

If you were a true conservative, you would stop using the word ‘Left’ so much and start analyzing how corporations such as Wal-Mart don’t actually operate in a ‘free market’ like you so foolhardily believe, but instead operate in a distorted environment (that they helped create, obviously in their favor of course) that squeezes profit out of every possible avenue at the expense of any and all imagined ‘rights’ of anyone or any other company who stands in the way of those profits.

So get a clue, you’re ignorance is hilariously obvious. And it’s this kind of ignorance by people like you that is the true cause of the rampant loss of liberty in our nation. You’re the very face of the pathetic ’status-quo’ that has held back the progress of human civilization for thousands of years. Your words and attitude expressed above is the very essence of humanity’s failure.

Jeff

April 30th, 2010
4:24 am

Rick’s liberal rant is tolerable up to the last paragraph then he goes off the deep end. Must be off his meds. Take a pill and go home.

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
7:22 am

Good morning all. The 9th Circuit is so loopy that it is usually overturned by the Supreme Court, so all is not yet lost. Leftist accommodation of the wishes of plaintiff attorneys, to the detriment of consumers, is neither a new nor unexpected development. I would abolish all employment discrimination laws, as they are the principle weapon of thought police; I have full confidence in the capacities of the free market to punish mindless discrimination, and to reward efficiency.

I am distressed that 27% of independent economists think that the “stimulus” had some benefit to the economy; what are they thinking? I fear the field is going to the dogs. Maybe 27% of the surveyed were faux-thinkers out of their league, like the former Enron advisor who took up residence at the NYT.

The “cost control” in medicare will arise from diminished reimbursement to practitioners for services, which will lead to a large number of practitioners refusing to accept such patients. (As slavery was abolished by the 13th Amendment, there is no legal or moral obligation to provide service without market compensation.) Magna Sarah called the ObamaCare/Medicare strategy, “death panels.” And, of course, she is right.

If Mayor Reed fulfills that promise, the Republicans ought to run him for governor. If he fulfills his promise, the democrats will disown him.

The Congressional abandonment of South Vietnam, over the objections by then-President Ford, is the greatest US shame within my lifetime. There have been many stupider acts by our government, but none more shameful.

There is a $50 bill? I’ve never carried anything bigger than a $20, and never more than one at a time.

Agree that Georgia should challenge ObamaCare. I do not fault Mr. Baker for acknowledging that he is not up to the challenge; he properly should leave such a battle to those who are.

Do not doubt that Carters is seeing a 150% increase; the company has been depressed for the 25 years since Mrs. jbmlaw ceased needing to purchase their wares.

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
7:42 am

Apologies to the grammar police – “principle” was not clever word play in my 7:22, simply an error.

Lee

April 30th, 2010
7:42 am

I agree with Rag, if Reed can clean up “The Mess”, aka City of Atlanta, then run him Gov.

Congress and each state should pass a law, “No road, bridge, building, ship, airport, or anything else paid for by public funds will be named after a person unless said individual has been deceased for at least 100 years.”

MiltonMan

April 30th, 2010
7:43 am

Please refrain from anymore references to “Do nothing” Baker. Everytime I have to read about him I get a bad case of dysentery

vracer

April 30th, 2010
8:05 am

AG Baker will not pursue voter verification nor oppose Obamacare. That makes him the perfect imperfect democrat candidate for governor.

The Udder Side!!!!

April 30th, 2010
8:05 am

Can someone, anyone tell me what Reagan did to deserve to be on the $50.00??? Why not bring back the $2.00 and put him on one side and Nancy’s palm reader on the other…..

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
8:13 am

Dear Udder @ 8:05, while I dislike the idea of honoring contemporary politicians and agree with Lee’s post at 7:42, Mr. Reagan made life impossible for the leftists then in control of the US. Broke the back of international communism, over the objections of his State Department, with humor – suggest you Bing “Reykjavik.” We also credit him with restoring sanity to the economy, by reversing the last of the Nixonian/Keynesian “price controls,” which was contrary to conventional wisdom then. Hard for young people to appreciate just how screwed up were the 1970s, the last era when leftists ran things, until they look around today.

The Cynical White Boy

April 30th, 2010
8:48 am

Holy Cow – they REALLY make $50 bills in this country? Really? I learn something new every single day.

I’m currently doing all I can to keep a $20 bill in my wallet, given taxes, utility bills, paying for Ob-Blah-Blah zombies who receive cradle-to-grave benefits, so it really doesn’t matter who or what they decide to put on a $50 dollar bill.

Thanks for the education, though.

John Barnes

April 30th, 2010
8:51 am

spill baby spill.

how is the whole drill baby drill thing working out for ya?

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
8:56 am

Dear John @ 8:51, Do you realize we could reduce auto deaths to zero if we would just reduce the speed limit to 7 mph? Are all these traffic deaths worth the benefits of a higher speed limit?

Left wing bed wetters need to be deported

April 30th, 2010
8:57 am

Jim, great points.

Can’t wait until November when left wingers like Bookman and Tucker cry like little babies when their beloved Democrat Party is out of power.

GO ARIZONA!!!!!!!

Left wing bed wetters need to be deported

April 30th, 2010
8:58 am

“how is the whole drill baby drill thing working out for ya?”

Just fine. Oh by the way, Obama Hussein is the one that allowed this to happen.

Left wing bed wetters need to be deported

April 30th, 2010
8:59 am

“Can someone, anyone tell me what Reagan did to deserve to be on the $50.00???”

Ended the Cold War, got us out of the Carter disaster, made America the number one super power in the world….

Mid GA Retiree

April 30th, 2010
9:03 am

Regarding digging holes, (get out much, 12:06 a. m.) don’t just climb out and walk away. Fill them in so no one else falls into them.

Morrus

April 30th, 2010
9:20 am

Vote out the incumbents and start over

The Udder Side!!!!

April 30th, 2010
9:22 am

Left wing bed wetters need to be deported

April 30th, 2010
8:57 am

Part of me wants to respond to your post, but the more rational side of me says “whats the use”??? I happen to not be an Obama fan, but to blame the guy for an oil spill coming from a platform that has been online for several years just shows how Stupid and blindly partisain you really are….. Why not step away from the keyboard and Turn on Beck, I am sure he has some more nuggets for his minions to take and spread around!!!

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
9:25 am

Dear Udder @ 9:22, I perceived Jon Stewart-style humor in the 8:57 post by our friend “left wing.” I am certain he draws an analogy to the Bush administration’s Katrina.

LibraryJim

April 30th, 2010
9:28 am

The South didn’t lose — we are merely in a protracted retreat.
If at first you don’t seceded: try try again!

Van Jones

April 30th, 2010
9:32 am

“…corporations such as Wal-Mart don’t actually operate in a ‘free market’ like you so foolhardily believe, but instead operate in a distorted environment (that they helped create, obviously in their favor of course) that squeezes profit out of every possible avenue at the expense of any and all imagined ‘rights’ of anyone …”

Am I correct in my assumption that Walmart employees have the ‘right’ to NOT work there. Hmmm, maybe I should upgrade my skills and get a better job? Nah, I just want to complain that I’m not being treated “fairly”.

RJ

April 30th, 2010
9:33 am

It would be ironic to put Reagan on the $50 bill. Under his administration, you’d have been taxed right out of it. It might be better if we said we were putting him on the new 50, then issued a $25 bill.

The Udder Side!!!!

April 30th, 2010
9:35 am

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
9:25 am

Ragnar, had that post come from you I would fully understand and agree, But that posters is not nearly as witty as you. That is the kind of “mouth breather” that undercuts the ability to have spirited debate on political matters. Too much Fox and Friends and not nearly enough personal investigation of the facts……

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
9:38 am

Dear Udder @ 9:35, thanks, I think?

The Udder Side!!!!

April 30th, 2010
9:47 am

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
9:38 am

It was most sincere.. and your welcome :)

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
9:59 am

Dear Udder @ 9:47, appropriately chastened, I thank you sincerely.

Gator Joe

April 30th, 2010
10:07 am

Jim:
Why would anyone want to replace Benjamin Franklin, a truly significant American historical figure, on the $50 bill, with a mediocre president, who was more style than substance? What is your rationale, his participation in Iran-Contra, responsibility for the slaughter of 200 Marines in Lebanon, his placing flowers on the graves of Nazi soldiers at Bittberg, Germany?

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 30th, 2010
10:15 am

Dear Gator @ 10:07, the American leftists never have gotten over losing in Nicaragua, have they?

Chris Broe

April 30th, 2010
10:18 am

35 years since the Fall of Saigon…..I guess it takes a journalist to miss the Tet Offensives……what a story!!

Jim Wooten is an agent 4 d’Orange Alert policies of the Bush doctrine. He can’t see deforest4detrees. My diacritically-challenged opinion is that Lady Liberty and Wooten should have a tete-a-tete; (offensive as that sounds). Reading Wooten has become like shoving bamboo sticks up my fingernails. Just kidding……

A sellout journalist who prostitutes his talent is like a john who doesn’t care about his ho’s chi. (Men trail women in that respect, you know). My point is that I think that every single general of the current Joint Chiefs of Staff agree that Nam was a mistake, but maybe that’s the biggest one of my lies.

We perpetrated My Lai because the Vietnamese didn’t want a McDonalds on every street corner. Now, we can build as many Mickey D’s we want over there. American Corporations are invading Nam with trade and cultural exchanges. GOOD! We can show them America and change their hearts and minds. We didn’t have to slaughter them like dogs. The military industrial complex that brought us Iraq and collateral damage also brought us Nam and My Lai, and that brings us back to Cheney.

OT: Howard Dean is being interviewed on CNBC and I always get a kick out of how much he resembles Lee Harvey Oswald. Check it out. Separated at birth?

Just Kidding…………..

RJ

April 30th, 2010
10:45 am

Gator Joe,

“Jim:
Why would anyone want to replace Benjamin Franklin, a truly significant American historical figure, on the $50 bill, with a mediocre president, who was more style than substance? What is your rationale, his participation in Iran-Contra, responsibility for the slaughter of 200 Marines in Lebanon, his placing flowers on the graves of Nazi soldiers at Bittberg, Germany?”

You might want to do a little fact checking on that one. I wouldn’t put Reagan on the $50 either, but Ben Franklin certainly isn’t the reason. After all, he’s on the $100.

Dr. Stan-(the black one)

April 30th, 2010
11:18 am

● Is it 35 years already since the fall of Saigon? No people more deserve the freedoms that America affords than the refugees who came after Vietnam’s fall. This nation can never fully compensate them for our failure to honor our commitment to their freedom.

Allow me to move the subliminal message contained in the paragraph above from your unconscious mind to the conscious. “The American military machine must honor its commitment to freedom in the Middle East, Iran, Iraq, and Afghanistan etc. Twenty five million Americans are already unemployed and many refugees will be coming to the United States to compete for a paltry amount of jobs should we leave. Refugees deserve to be fully compensated for casting their lot with the dark side of our government. So bringing our troops home is not an alternative”.

Hillbilly Deluxe

April 30th, 2010
11:20 am

WalMart, for quite some time, has been cutting it’s employees hours back to move them from full-time to part-time status, so it doesn’t have to give them benefits. Of course they’re for Obamacare. It shifts the burden off of them and on to someone else. And it takes the heat off of them for not providing benefits,

Gator Joe

April 30th, 2010
11:24 am

RJ,
I stand corrected, humbled, and I sincerely apologize for my ignorance of who is on the $50 bill, Grant of course. However, I stand by my points regarding Ronald Reagan.

Dr. Stan-(the black one)

April 30th, 2010
11:49 am

Speaking of subliminal messages, there is a concerted effort by blue dog integrationist to force the masses to believe the children of the elitist Africans who sold other Africans into the Trans-Atlantic slavery bear no responsibility for the consequences on the other side. The offspring of the buyers of human beings should be primarily responsible for reparations, they say.

If the offspring of the offended masses accept that postulate, reasoning dictates the offspring of the elitist integrationist Negroes who sold the masses into integration, for money, plush jobs, fame, status, materialism etc. ,should bear no responsibility for the genocidal consequences visited upon the masses after segregation. The responsibility of reparations falls on the shoulders of the offspring of the Americans who opened the doors as well as the offspring of the Negro masses who didn’t walk through, they say.

In many respects, Dr. Henry Louis Gates might agree with me.

Diogenes

April 30th, 2010
1:54 pm

Good afternoon, Jim,

Have you no conscience? That Wal-Mart suit is about protecting the people who work for Wal-Mart against the abuses of the strong, not about politics. Have you no sympathny for your fellow man? It often appears that you support buiness over people. Of course, the fallacy of conservatism is that there is no place for people in the ideology.

rdh

April 30th, 2010
2:55 pm

Kasim Reed has his work cut out for him. I have been listening and reading the back-and-forth going on in the city. This really goes to the heart of the future of the City of Atlanta. He will be demonized and hated by city employees. He will be called every name in the book. But what he is doing is salvaging the future of Atlanta.

jconservative

April 30th, 2010
6:47 pm

“The suit, (WalMart) now a class action headed to trial, was filed by six women in 2001.”

Are you saying there is no case here? I suspect there is not but have no evidence. You?

——————–

“Put Ronald Reagan on the $50 bill.”

Your kidding right? Put the man whose policy of tax cuts/increased spending has now brought us the the door of bankruptcy on our folding money? Your kidding!

Mid-South Philosopher

May 1st, 2010
5:40 am

@ R J and Gator Joe,

Relative to the portrait on the $50 bill….Thanks for clearing that up. It has been so d*mn long since I saw either a $50 or a $100 bill, I had forgotten!

retiredds

May 1st, 2010
2:43 pm

Jim, it seems you have selective amnesia. I guess I am going to have to correct you again. Health care is not Obamacare it is Romney/Obamacare. So will you get it straight next time, please. And if you don’t I will keep reminding you.

Also would you care to talk about “spill baby spill” the new mantra that is replacing “drill baby drill” from the likes of Palin, et. al. I’m wondering if you could do an article, or have some comment, on just how her (and others like her) were so wrong about the risks of drilling for oil near our shores. The worst can happen, correction, is happening and not a peep out of the crowd (whom you support wholeheartedly and without a critical eye) about what’s happening in the Gulf of Mexico. My guess is they are huddled up on in some padded room somewhere trying to figure out how to spin the news, or possibly concocting a story that this is not really happening its the news media creating the disaster (sort of like the birther garbage).

Michael H. Smith

May 1st, 2010
5:39 pm

The MSDNC talking points section has now been published for those who choose not to watch liberal tripe cable TV.

Brucie is keeping up the evil fight in the losing battle. We will Drill Baby, Drill because we have no other choice than to take the risks. Notice gas prices jumped 12 cent a gallon over night after the updated news on the spill.

The Tar and Feathers Party

May 2nd, 2010
10:44 am

Back when the world was on the gold standard, there was a limit on how much a government could inflate its currency, imports and exports had to be carefully balanced, and deficit spending impoverished the people and the government. In those days, a Bank of International Settlement existed in each major country which had on deposit a certain amount of gold from all major trading partners. The bank had little barred cells, like an old west jail house, where each coutry’s gold was stored. The balance of trade for each country pair was settled in gold each quarter by moving bars from one cell to another. When a county ran out of gold bars at the bank, they had to supply more, or stop all imports until they earned more gold. Since all governments have completely abused the power to print money, I believe we are heading back to the gold standard by necessity, not by choice. No government would willingly return to the gold standard, that would force the guv to be honest. But the sequence of financial crisis in the West is forcing a return to honesty, and the gold standard is the only way to force guvs to be honest. The Greek are known liars, thieves, and cheats, yet they were able to borrow unbelievable amounts of paper currency just because it was so easy to print. Under the gold standard, Greece would have been cut off in 1999, no new credit, and many of their foreign assets seized by creditors. The story is the same in the rest of the Western world, big lies about deficits and debt. In America, two trillion dollars has been stolen from Social Security, so far without a peep from the victims. That will not last. There is going to be a mad scramble governments to use paper currency to buy up as much gold as possible. The return to the gold standard will result in much lower living standards around the world, and governments are to blame for their wild deficit spending. Be sure to punish any and all government officials for your reduced living standard.

Curious Observer

May 2nd, 2010
10:58 am

Carter’s Inc., the Atlanta maker of baby clothes, reports a 150 percent increase in sales in the first quarter. No surprise. Both grandmothers of my acquaintance were shopping.

Glad to see that all this unemployment has had some positive effect. When you’re out of work and can’t afford birth control, well . . .

RTW

May 6th, 2010
3:42 am

“IronMayor” would be cool. Sorry, couldn’t resist.

Nads

May 6th, 2010
11:20 am

A “free market” is a swell mantra when all players are operating on the same playing field. Not the case for Wally World. They have been on their own playing field through sheer size and the political control that such size commands.

But since the average American (and certainly the average Georgian) cannot look past “hey, $2 lawn chairs!”, Wal-Mart continues to grow at the expense of American industry, American businesses and American property values.

Does ANYONE on the right recognize the consequences of buying the cheapest thing, every time? Are economics really that cut-and-dry to you, Jim? How did you get a column, anyway?

Enjoy your retirement. Life has passed you by.

You first

May 6th, 2010
1:03 pm

I suggest the AJC cut pension and all other benefits to set an example for the city. After all, I think the AJC’s finances are in much worst shape than the city’s. That 25%+ reductions in subscriptions doesn’t lie. Perhaps the economic wizard Wooten could expand on that item in his next article.