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Friday, July 25, 2014
Southern Weather Radar


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    war in afghanistan

    And when you ask them, “How much should we give?” Ooh, they only answer More! more! more!

    by | Mar 2, 2014
    Rep. Howard P. "Buck" McKeon (R-Calif)

    What would winning the War in Afghanistan look like? America has been at war there for 13 years and you would expect that after thousands of casualties and spending immense sums of our tax dollars something that could be deemed victory would have been achieved by now. Instead of that we are presented with soon to be retiring Rep. Howard P. ‘Buck’ McKeon, Chair of the House Armed Services Committee, chiding the America people and President Obama for not wanting to keep fighting the longest war in our history.

     

     

    union rights are civil rights

    Union loss in Chattanooga doesn’t deter Mississippi workers

    by | Feb 28, 2014
    Union loss in Chattanooga doesn't deter Mississippi workers

    Chip Wells, 43, an 11-year veteran at the 5,200-worker Nissan plant in Canton, Mississippi, says the recent bad news coming out of the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, did nothing to deter him and fellow pro-union Nissan workers from their campaign to join the United Auto Workers. “People think that derailed us,” says Wells, who works in Nissan’s paint department, “but we think it made us stronger.”

     

     

    taking god's name in vain

    Legalizing Discrimination

    by | Feb 27, 2014
    Legalizing Discrimination

    HB 1023 and SB 377 are now slithering through the dank halls of Georgia’s government. These bills would allow business owners to openly discriminate against gay Americans by denying them employment or services: banning them from restaurants, hotels etc. (Translation: anybody who wishes to discriminate against someone for any reason need only say that it’s because it’s part of their “personal religion”.) The so-called “Preservation of Religious Freedom Act” would, in effect, permit any individual or for-profit company to ignore Georgia’s anti-discrimination and civil rights laws.

     

     

    pandering to stupid

    I hate this time of year

    by | Feb 25, 2014
    I hate this time of year

    I live in Georgia. The General Assembly is in session. It is our annual celebration of stupidity, ignorance, pandering, baiting, and hate. It is open season on history, the Constitution, science, mutual respect, and common sense. It is a loathsome time. 40 days and $20 billion in public cash. One party, under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for some. This is an election year and our elected cannot legally accept campaign contributions while in the legislature is in session. The pressure is on in the hurry to protect poor little Georgia from big meanie pants Washington. Blame Obama. Praise Jesus. All hail the NRA and Georgia Carry. Cut taxes, but give give give to bidness.

     

     

    georgia hb 875

    Stand Your Ground Against This Bill

    by | Feb 21, 2014
    Stand Your Ground Against This Bill

    It’s the first day of school.  Imagine weepy parents and eager teachers. Imagine clingy children, it’s the first time we leave them in the care of our school. Some kids are thrilled with their new found independence. Now imagine that teacher armed with an AR-15, a lightweight, 5.56 mm, .223-caliber, magazine-fed, air cooled rifle with a rotating-lock bolt, actuated by direct impingement gas operation. A weapon we see in the movies. But it’s not a movie. It’s Georgia and it could be real, with passage of HB 875.

     

     

    keystone xl

    An Environmental Triple Whammy

    by | Feb 5, 2014
    An Environmental Triple Whammy

    “This we know: the earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth. Man did not weave the web of life; he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.”Chief Seattle, 1854

    On January 31, the Department of State issued its environmental assessment of TransCanada’s proposed Keystone XL (KXL) pipeline. If built, the KXL will transport petroleum from Canada’s Alberta tar sands to a neighborhood near you. At least that’s the hype. The safe bet is that the oil will be sold to the highest bidder…

     

     

    useless on ice

    Southern Snowpocalyse

    by | Jan 30, 2014
    Southern Snowpocalyse

    A dozen years ago, during the early spring, I was visiting my son in Pennsylvania. Among the scheduled activities was an opportunity to see my ten year old grandson play basketball that Saturday at the local YMCA. Upon rising that morning and peering out the bedroom window, I felt a tinge of disappointment. A dusting of snow had come during the night. I walked down to get coffee and expressed my regret to my son. He looked at me with surprise and confusion until he realized what I meant.

     

     

    his katrina?

    Deal’s Jam

    by | Jan 30, 2014
    Deal's Jam

    What is it with Republican governors and traffic jams? Up in New Jersey, we’ve got Chris Christie’s staff ordering up some “traffic problems” for Fort Lee, perhaps as a prank, and in Atlanta, Georgia, we’ve got Nathan Deal and the Mayor of Atlanta hosting each other at lunch while the traffic all around the city flops around in slush.

     

     

    something is wrong

    The Real State of the Union

    by | Jan 30, 2014
    The Real State of the Union

    The state of the Union is crap. 20% of the country is doing OK. 1% is doing fantastically. 0.001% is doing so well it’s criminal, literally. They don’t own everything yet but they do own all the politicians, judges, regulators, academics, and reporters. So they’re getting there. The other 80%, the rubes, the muppets, the serfs, are mired in an undeclared, ongoing depression. 50 years on I can safely state that the War on Poverty has been won. The poor have been defeated, the middle class conquered.

     

     

    déjà vu

    Incompatible and nontraditional

    by | Jan 20, 2014
    Incompatible and nontraditional

    I wouldn’t be writing about this now but for the 1996 Olympic Games. They were in Atlanta, you may recall, although probably the only thing you remember is the bomb Eric Robert Rudolph planted at Centennial Olympic Park. We didn’t know that at the time. Instead, we all blamed a luckless security guard who probably kept the death toll at one when he spotted Rudolph’s bomb. But before that, there was Cobb County.

     

     

    not so lame duck

    Not Again: Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

    by | Jan 20, 2014
    Not Again: Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

    The phrase “media bias” is used when someone does not agree with how a news organization presented a story.  News organizations themselves accuse other news agencies of various biases, particularly with regard to where an organization falls along the liberal-conservative continuum.  Fox News accuses the mainstream media, of which Fox apparently is not a part, of a liberal bias.  So-called progressive organizations such as MSNBC accuse Fox News of having a conservative bias.  When it comes to media bias, point an accusatory finger in any direction and you’ll likely hit a target.

     

     

    anti-families with children

    What do Johnny and Saxby and Lindsey have in common?

    by | Jan 14, 2014
    What do Johnny and Saxby and Lindsey have in common?

    What do Johnny and Saxby and Lindsey have in common with the ladies from New Hampshire and Maine, Kelly and Susan? The U.S. Senators, Isakson, Chambliss and Graham, along with a handful of others, couldn’t wait to gum up the longterm unemployment compensation legislation, so they attached themselves to number one amender, Senator Ayotte.

     

     

    polar vortex

    Melvin and The Almighty Hawk

    by | Jan 6, 2014
    Melvin and The Almighty Hawk

    The Hawk has come South and Hell has frozen over.

    I can’t prove these two events scientifically but I am very sure both happened in the last few days. Suddenly, the area to the south of the Mason-Dixon line is the freeze-framed Land of Petrified Cold. Mother Nature has turned into a frigid, heartless, cold-blooded shrew.

    It hasn’t been this cold since…

     

     

    noveau luck

    One Lotto Loser’s Open Letter to Fate

    by | Dec 23, 2013
    One Lotto Loser's Open Letter to Fate

    Dear Fate (aka Pure Dumb Luck): A few days back, out of what must have been millions upon millions of contest entrants, you choose to smile broadly on a lady living in Stone Mountain, Georgia. Statisticians tell us that ‘Ms. Stone Mountain Big Winner Lady’ (not her real name) has a better chance of being struck by lightning than winning the Powerball Lottery. Ms. Lady is extraordinarily lucky TWICE last week then. First, she doesn’t get struck by an electric bolt out of the blue yonder and second, she wins ONE HUNDRED TWENTY MILLION DOLLARS!

     

     

    ebenezer would be proud

    Bad Press Better than No Press

    by | Dec 19, 2013
    Bad Press Better than No Press

    Jack Kingston, the Republican representative from Georgia’s first district and esteemed member of the Republican theme team, has apparently decided that, if he wants to be a viable candidate for the United States Senate, he’s got to get himself some press coverage. Since he’s not a novice, we have to assume that targeting the children’s lunches is not an accident. According to Daniel Molloy, writing for the Atlanta Journal Constitution Kingston said: “On the Agriculture Committee we have jurisdiction over the school lunch…

     

     

    those who forget the past

    The politics of 1860: Why Christie won’t be the Republican nominee

    by | Dec 9, 2013
    The politics of 1860: Why Christie won't be the Republican nominee

    Will the Republicans nominate Chris Christie for president in 2016? The presidential politics of 1860 provide an answer, my premise being that the spirit that drives the Republican Party in our times is a re-emergence of the spirit that drove the South in the years leading up to the Civil War.

     

     

    sacred economics to heal

    Is the Pope an Occupier?

    by | Dec 6, 2013
    Is the Pope an Occupier?

    Pope Francis’ recent encyclical is sending shock waves around the world. In addition to exhortations to the faithful, Evangelii Gaudium (“The Joy of the Gospel”) packs a scathing critique of “unbridled” capitalism and consumerism. Here’s the flavor of the Pope’s message:

    Just as the commandment ‘Thou shalt not kill’ sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say ‘thou shalt not’ to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills.

     

     

    control issues

    In the land of the Cons

    by | Dec 5, 2013
    In the land of the Cons

    Nothing is as it seems in the land of the Cons. We’ve got to remember that. Sometimes it seems that, regardless of the issue, con men have to deceive, even if it means cutting off their own noses or, if they happen to be politicians, the noses of the constituents they expect to vote for them. If that makes no sense, it is still a fact in the twenty states where Governors, no doubt on the advice of their Representatives in Congress, are rejecting the extra dollars that would extend health care to people not earning enough to afford even subsidized insurance policies.

     

     

    engaged in the drama

    At Lincoln’s death, 12-day rail procession took body to Springfield

    by | Nov 26, 2013
    At Lincoln's death, 12-day rail procession took body to Springfield

    Last week Americans saw heavy media coverage of the death 50 years ago of President John F. Kennedy. I couldn’t help but compare the aftermath and funeral of JFK with that of Abraham Lincoln, both victims of assassins.

    One reason this came to mind is because I had just finished a year-long project — reading Carl Sandburg’s six volume biography of Lincoln.

     

     

    moronic public displays

    Gun Rights Advocates Turn to Intimidation

    by | Nov 12, 2013
    Gun Rights Advocates Turn to Intimidation

    Everything is indeed bigger in Texas, and now that slogan can also apply to moronic public displays of intimidation. The New York Times reported today on an armed protest outside a suburban restaurant this past weekend. From NYT: “A small meeting of a group seeking tougher gun laws was interrupted Saturday at a suburban Dallas restaurant when the woman who helped organize it saw something outside that startled her: at least two dozen men and women in the parking lot with shotguns, hunting rifles, AR-15s and AK-47s…

     

     

    50 years

    Overkilling Kennedy

    by | Nov 7, 2013
    Overkilling Kennedy

    Between the commemorative magazines at grocery checkouts evoking “Camelot” and the early-bird TV specials – JFK: The Smoking Gun,  Killing Kennedy and Capturing Oswald, to name just three – it’s hard to miss the fact that the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy is fast approaching. By midnight on November 22, there will have been more than 20 newly produced assassination specials, including a History Channel offering that promises to be “definitive.”

     

     

    how to keep defeating them

    Open Letter to President Obama

    by | Oct 11, 2013
    Open Letter to President Obama

    Good for you for standing your ground. I hope you’ve noticed how useful, for the overall political picture, it has been for you to hold firm and leave this Republican Party exposed as the reckless, anti-democratic, warlike force it has become.

    Helping the American people see clearly the nature of the force that’s taken over that Party is and remains Job One, because none of the other important tasks that confront us as a nation can be tackled successfully so long as they retain the power to prevent good things from being accomplished.

     

     

    affordable care act

    A Model of Compromise Detested by the Uncompromising

    by | Oct 9, 2013
    A Model of Compromise Detested by the Uncompromising

    As the government shutdown drags on and America creeps ever closer to yet another economic catastrophe, it is important to clarify a few things about the sole focus of House Republicans’ full-scale obstruction. Most realize that the government shutdown is a direct result of a desperate effort to stop the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, but it is worth explaining exactly what it is that extremist Republicans are trying to stop.

     

     

    colors against the shadows

    Light In October

    by | Oct 8, 2013
    Light In October

    The American marten’s body this morning had lost its lustrous sheen my wife Jody and I had marveled at yesterday when our dogs found it in the woods just off our drive. In the eighteen years I have lived here, this is only the second marten I’ve seen. I only got a glimpse of the first one years ago as he darted down off a rock and disappeared alongside the stream. We have no idea what killed this one, although we have coyotes and fox here who are natural predators.

     

     

    it's out there

    Just Tell the Truth, Why Don’t Ya?

    by | Oct 5, 2013
    Just Tell the Truth, Why Don't Ya?

    I’ve had enough. Really. Enough. I’ve tried so hard not to write about this shutdown thing, not to even think about it. But it’s not working. Every day, it’s some new idiocy. The latest, Florida Republican Congressman Dennis Ross, telling us the GOP can’t back down now because of “pride.”

     

     

    enough

    When will moderate Republicans decide “enough is enough?”

    by | Oct 4, 2013
    When will moderate Republicans decide "enough is enough?"

    At what point will the rank-and-file of the Republican Party determine that the extreme right wing of their party is about to take their party down? The “don’t compromise at any price” GOP element seems intent to getting their way, no matter what, though this may seriously harm any effort by the mainstream Republican Party to move toward the center on any issue. It may blow the Republicans out of the water in the next election.

     

     

    health insurance marketplace

    October First

    by | Sep 27, 2013
    October First

    As we creep ever closer to the day that 48,600,000 uninsured Americans have been waiting so long for… October first. The day the national insurance exchanges will open. The day that Teapuglicans have fought so tirelessly to prevent. It is time we were reminded of just how ruthlessly stupid our state leaders are. Perhaps, that isn’t fair. Maybe they are not stupid, just uninformed. Or perhaps, they are betting we are.

     

     

  • Worthy of Comment



  • Also on the Dew

    A Constellation of Vital Phenomena

    A Constellation of Vital Phenomena

    By: David Evans

    I knew I liked him early on by the way he told a joke. He had timing and delivery and the punch line was not telegraphed. Whenever I get off my mountain, I’m alert to serendipitous opportunities to meet such people and to get a peek into their lives. So on a recent trip to Atlanta for a couple of woodworking classes, I had the pleasure of spending a few nights with a dear friend in Asheville, one of the world’s finest and most civilized of cities. My friend is also a fine lady and like her adopted city, most civ  Read on →

    Is Nothing Sacred?

    Is Nothing Sacred?

    By: Andy Schmookler

    Every human culture, it seems, has had some notion of the sacred, and has placed that notion at the center of its worldview. From this, we can conclude several things: 1) that a sense of the sacred – like other universals, such as language and music – is an inherent part of our humanity; 2) that therefore we can conclude that this sense has served the cause of life of our kind through the eons in which we developed; and 3) that the experience of “the sacred” possesses an important kind of power, that it is not just an inherent part of us b  Read on →

    Battles Forfeited

    Battles Forfeited

    By: Andy Schmookler

    But the sacred is something that Liberal America, by and large, has not been tapping into. That was not always true. One can sense the sacred in the words of FDR, for example, engraved in the granite in that memorial on the National Mall. (And FDR was not shy about going toe to toe against his enemies, whether it be to help make the nation a better place or to stop the predations of the fascist powers against much of the world.) That was then. But if one listens to the voice of Liberal America in these times, one does not get  Read on →

    When Hot Cars Were Cool

    When Hot Cars Were Cool

    By: Tom Poland

    My high school years unfolded in a time when hanging out at drive-ins and burger joints was all we had. We played 45 RPMs by the Beach Boys and William Jan Berry and Dean Ormsby Torrence. You know them as Jan and Dean of “Dead Man’s Curve” and “The Little Old Lady from Pasadena” fame. Surf music was the craze back then in the era of steering wheel suicide knobs, but catching a wave in eastern Georgia wasn’t easy. Cars, though, now that was a different matter. Hot, candy-colored cars possessing names like GTO, Chevelle, Firebird, and Thunderbolt mesmerized us. So there we we  Read on →