Archive for May, 2011

Lotto salesmen on the loose again

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

● Always looking for an opening to expand ways to take the milk-and-egg money of the poor and the pipe-dreamers, promoters are quick to grasp the down economy and over-promised HOPE scholarship to call for video gambling. If you ever lived in a poor neighborhood you know: There’s always somebody knocking on misery’s door promising salvation or riches — and asking for just a little of your money.

● Those who have paid attention over the past quarter century to the sleazing of daytime TV have to acknowledge the extraordinary feat of Oprah Winfrey. As the competing offerings descended into non-stop trash-talk, she remained plugged-in to the concerns, interests and values of mainstream America and, in the process, elevated book-reading to a family priority. She is one of the remarkable figures of our time.

● In an age of deep partisanship, it’s rare to find any policy or any public figure that pulls them together …

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Verbal gaffe will cost Gingrich

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

● Assuming Gov. Nathan Deal gets to appoint — or voters elect — one more Supreme Court justice in the mold of the two former Gov. Sonny Perdue appointed, Georgia will have a majority whose interpretation of law is more pleasing to conservatives — and decisions like this week’s 4-3 ruling on charter schools will go the other way. While that one was not strictly left-right, the majority bought the arguments of the old-line education establishment that has bitterly resisted parental choice — and effectively gutted charter school competition. For those who favor choice, the task now is to fight for vouchers and for the principle that public money follows the child to the education provider parents deem most suitable.

● The dissenters in the charter school decision were Presiding Justice George H. Carley, a 1993 Zell Miller appointee, and Justices Harold Melton and David E. Nahmias, both Perdue appointees. You …

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Be wary of costs shifting to states

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

● ObamaCare requires setting up hundreds of “accountable care organizations” across the country to regulate costs and services. A group representing almost 400 large medical providers serving about a third of the population finds the initial blueprint so complex and onerous that 90 percent of its members won’t participate voluntarily. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, making himself all the more appealing, promises that on his first day as president he’ll grant Obama-Care waivers to all states and will ask Congress for its repeal.

● Only 29.6 percent of “scholars” who qualify for the HOPE stipend as freshmen earn the grades in college to retain it until graduation. At some schools, it’s fewer than 20 percent and at the University of West Georgia it’s 8.3 percent. The retention rate confirms what Georgians have long known: Many of the B’s handed out in high school are esteem grades or charity …

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The rule of law is not negotiable

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

● One terrorist down. One to go. And then one more until all of those who actively conspire to kill us are defanged or dead. It ain’t over yet.

● The White House says the terrorist was unarmed. Not so on 9 /11 when America consummated the contract with Osama bin Laden that was done on 5 /1.

● Sometimes, now being one of them, sports metaphors are inappropriate. “We don’t need to spike the football,” said President Barack Obama in explaining the decision not to release the bin Laden death photos.

● With every ounce of energy Gov. Nathan Deal and legislative leaders can muster, they should work to eliminate the practice of public officials pocketing fees paid to them personally for performing public duties. Not even the tiniest burgh in Georgia should allow individuals operating under the color of law to do it. The AJC reports that Fulton County Tax Commissioner Arthur Ferdinand pocketed $342,000 last …

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