Thinking Right’s weekend free-for-all. Pick a topic:
● Here’s an idea for saving HOPE, a concern of Gov.-elect Nathan Deal. Make it a scholarship. A real one with standards sufficiently high to cover the money available. Don’t promise what we don’t have.
● Bless ’em, yet another group of Delta Air Lines workers has rejected the invitation to unionize. I love the diversity of the private sector, where companies like Chick-fil-A can buck the retail crowd and maintain the founder’s values — never open on Sunday — and where employees of a company like Delta in a heavily unionized industry say to unions “thanks, but that’s not our culture.”
● Oooh! The angry hard-core lefties who seethe that individual earners are keeping too much of what they believe to be the government’s money are in full temper-tantrum. It’s because President Barack Obama has agreed with Republicans to trade off a two-year extension of all of President George W. Bush’s tax cuts in return for a 13-month extension of unemployment benefits. If you encounter one at a “holiday” party or what is generally (or formerly for the politically correct) known as a “Christmas” party, be kind. The Pelosi left, and the commentators who camp with them, have not forgiven us for November.
● This is serious. UPS stores and authorized shippers will now require proper photo ID. This means many children of Democrats will get no Christmas gifts from UPS Santas. As we’ve been told repeatedly, the requirement to present proper photo ID intimidates Democrats who are would-be voters. If fear keeps them cowering away from the voting booth, it’ll surely keep them from the shipping stores.
● The No. 2 Democrat in the Georgia House, Rep. Doug McKillip of Athens, switches parties. Of the 65 Democrats in the 180-member House, only 20 represent districts that aren’t majority black in voter registration. Rural Georgia is down to five white Democrats. Some suggestions are surfacing that it’s time to go to nonpartisan legislative elections. As with judicial, school board and some local races, the call for the “nonpartisan” switch is an effort to avoid something like November’s disaster.
● The AJC’s website ran a photo of the part-time accounting instructor at Kennesaw State University who is accused of taking off his clothes in front of students he was teaching. I’d have filed charges against the elderly gentleman, too. Clothing can be very becoming on the elderly, the heavily tattooed and those whose unhealthy diet is visually evident.
● The problem for conservatives with an absurd regulatory policy like Obama’s seven-year ban on offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico is that when balance in public policy necessarily returns, much of the media will report modifying or lifting the ban as “gutting” or “weakening environmental protections,” or invoke some other prejudicial word or phrase. There’s no such turn of phrase when a Republican administration’s energy, environmental or labor regulations are revisited.
● Hospital deals like the one with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia, the biggie on the block, that prohibits them from offering cheaper rates to others, are anti-competitive. They amount to an industry fixing a price floor. Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine pegs it perfectly: “To have contracts that legally prevent someone for lowering their health care costs … that’s pretty unconscionable.” A federal lawsuit in Michigan could and should lead to deep-sixing the practice. Blue Cross has 2.5 million members in Georgia; the No. 2, United Healthcare, has 1.3 million. Once Blue Cross signs, nobody else has any reason to negotiate.
Jim Wooten, an Opinion columnist, writes for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Reach him at email@example.com
- By Jim Wooten, Thinking Right blog