Posts Tagged ‘Congress’

Moderates need to use the coming Georgia U.S. Senate race as an opportunity to flex our “king making, scale tipping” muscles. Sen. Saxby Chambliss is an old school pro-business Republican rather than a new school pro-crazy drama starter. The far Right wants him gone and they want him to take any member of congress who talks with the other side with him.  No.

The extreme radical element of the GOP shouldn’t run Georgia or America. They are small in numbers yet vocal and crafty. Well, the reasonable center is huge and somewhat homeless regarding political parties. Since Georgia is a red state because the Democratic Party is poorly organized, Saxby’s replacement will likely be decided in a July primary rather than a November general election. Rep. Sanford Bishop, Rep. John Barrow or Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed could beat a Tea Party candidate but that is too risky.

Moderate Democrats must consider the possibility of swaying the Republican primary to a Saxby-like conservative. This move keeps a zealot out Georgia’s Senate office. Personally, I would pick Rep. Austin Scott or Rep. Jack Kingston because I want one of the two Senators to come from south Georgia and have a history of serving agriculture and military areas.

Since rural Georgia Democrats are as conservative as California Republicans, we can dig the whole no labels approach to governing—voting for a less bitter conservative would be easy.  We need solutions; we need peaceful dialog.  We need someone who will join with the Blue Dogs, Jon Huntsman, Barrack Obama, Condi Rice, Jeb Bush and Colin Powell to get about the business of fixing what is broken with our government and our mindsets.

Furthermore, candidacies for this Senate seat will likely open up U.S. House seats and I want to see some variety in the Georgia congressional delegation. A minority or woman in the Georgia congressional delegation from the GOP side would be peachy keen because someone should be at the table to say “enough with the silliness…let’s do the people’s work and govern.”

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Surprisingly, I agree with the rapper Two Chainz’s preoccupation with “I’m different.” We need some different mindsets in many aspects of our public and private lives because what has happen in the past simply isn’t fair, isn’t working and has us on a path to destruction.

Politicians: I have been waiting for two decades for a new type southerner officeholder/policymaker.  We need leaders who will tell the people the cold, hard facts—straight, no chaser; the good, the bad and the ugly.  A congressman or woman who goes to every community, builds trust, then sits on the tailgate of a pickup truck and tells the God’s honest truth about pulling everything on the fiscal table.

I have never been a fan of conservative columnist Cal Thomas but last month he wrote a classic about conservatives needing to “show up.”  The late Rep. Jack Kemp would show up in every neighborhood and people could sense his sincerity. Former RNC chairman Michael Steele tried to create a new subsection of conservatives who regularly dialoged with the other side and with regular non Republican folks but the Tea Party Movement wasn’t having that kind of different.

Tea Party People: America would be better off if those people weren’t so ticked off.  Their fiscal and governmental concerns are valid but being angry isn’t healthy or helpful.  Look, Black people have every right to be pissed with our bondage history in this nation but we (like the Native Americans) can’t carry that bitterness in our hearts.  The issues that have the Tea Partiers upset is still a pebble when compared to the boulder of slavery but we all need to make peace and move forward with positive energy.

Southern Youth: While this blog post started with Two Chainz I must take issue with the mindset of our kids.  The glamorization of thugs and strippers found in today’s hip hop is (in my opinion) is moving Black folks backwards.  In my neighborhood, the clean-cut kids with belts on their pants who speak English properly are different and I am so cheering for them.  The “yes, sir..no,sir” young ladies in my town are the remnants of our southern Black elegance.  That elegance is what we saw in the movie “The Help.”  I wrote a blog post once about Justice Clarence Thomas’s book about his grandfather.  Thomas’s grandfather didn’t like the government having the right to ask questions about what happens in his house.  I love that.


Hell, I will tell you about two chains.  The first chain was wrought iron and put by masters around the necks of slaves.  The second chains, which are golden, are in current times and put around the necks of slaves by slaves themselves.  I am different because I haven’t worn chains or any precious metal jewelry since 1979.  We need music like “De La Soul is on a roll…Black medallions…no gold.”  Two Chainz says “I wish a N-word would…like a kitchen cabinet.”  I wish the youth would watch our hip hop on VH1 Soul then view a Cosby Show marathon.


In summary, I hope that we create a movement of different in my community because what we are doing and where we are heading isn’t working.  We spend too much energy and time on the wrong things then struggle and suffer as a result.  All I want for my birthday is some guys who don’t reference to women as big booty garden tools. While Two Chainz says “me and you are cut from a different fabric,” I say that we are all woven into the same tapestry.

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The buzz around Georgia politics is that Eric Erickson of CNN and Red State might challenge Sen. Saxby Chambliss.  Saxby (he told us to call him that) was nice to me once a long time ago during a congressional ag staffers visit to Taylor County, Georgia, and I will never forget that.  He leaves when he is ready to go and if the far Right wants to push him for rebuffing his 20 year old tax pledge, their primary numbers can be replace by crossover moderates. 

Perhaps, Erickson of Bibb County could get the House of Representatives seat when Austin Scott exits for the U.S. Senate.  The polarization of the electorate that we have experienced in the last few years could be seen coming from a mile away.  I have always thought of Austin as a trendsetter who might be a great national leader and we are at a pivotal time when such leaders should emerge. 

Actually, the conservative movement would look better in my community if the recent election results moved them to listen to Republicans like Jeb Bush and Jon Huntsman.

The Democrats should start developing future Senate candidates closer to the middle modeled after Rep. Sanford Bishop and the Republicans should do the same with Austin in mind.

 Isakson and Chambliss are more statesmen at this point than politicians and that is a good thing.  I was thinking about the past, present and future Georgia congressional delegation while watching the legislative maneuvering in the movie Lincoln.  Austin Scott has that House seat on lock but he should function like a person who wants to win statewide in the future based on relationships and connections cultivated now.   What would old Abe do?

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President Obama’s presidency would have been better if he had a congress interested in dialog and compromise.  Without doubt, we are looking at one of the worst congresses in modern history.  Obama plan to have a healthy line of communication with the House and Senate and central to that plan was talks with conservatives like current GOP VP selection Paul Ryan.

The ugly part of the conservative movement wouldn’t let Ryan or any GOP members of Congress debate issues and seek solutions with the president.  Oh yeah, the ugly part has grown in the body of that party like a cancer.  As a party, Democrats are weak in the South but well-intended while Republicans are strong but hell-bent on running the nation without input from anyone outside their shrinking tent.

If they had listened to former RNC chairman Michael Steele, things would be different.  Steele and reasonable conservatives (who were moderate in their temperament) wanted to court those of us in the political center.  However, the Tea Party’s nature took them in another direction.  Understand, all conservatives share the same fiscal and size of government views but temperament is the key. 

The temperament of most southern conservatives will not allow them to select congressional candidates in primaries who will appeal to moderates in the general election.  Representative John Barrow of Augusta, Georgia,  is the last White Democrat in the House of Representatives from the deep South.  The GOP has been after him for years and to be honest, a moderate conservative Black candidate would have taken that seat.  Oh, I forgot that there are no GOP moderates since the Tea Party purge their ranks.

Rep. John Barrow listening

In the 12th congressional district primary, businessman Rick Allen lost to state Rep. Lee Anderson.  Allen has civic and social connections with non-Republicans in the Augusta area but that meant nothing to primary voters.  They wanted someone just like them and they got a candidate who refuses to debate Harvard-educated Barrow.   Democrats in Georgia that are looking for some action should get involved in the Barrow campaign because we can’t become a one race party in the South; we would be bogus.  Okay, I tossed in “bogus” because I was listened to MC Hammer yesterday and thought politics when he said “your party is bogus..yo, it ain’t legit” on the rap classic “Let’s Get It Started.”  Hammer could have been talking about Romney and the post Michael Steele RNC with their 47% nonsense.  

Let’s Get It Started had a sample from Queen’s “Another One Bites The Dust” and that is what is going to happen to GOP congressional candidates until they develop a moderate wing.  Hammer can be in a blog post about Augusta politics because brother James Brown is from that area and Hammer clearly bites from the Godfather of Soul’s beats and dance moves.  When America was on fire after the MLK assassination, Brown cooled things down.

We should get “Get Out The Vote” started for Barrow and Obama in that part of Georgia.  Barrow and the Blue Dogs bring moderate to conservative views to the Democrat table.

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Golf tournaments in Atlanta and Memphis sometimes have paddles that put me in the mind of campaign strategies. While marshall’s paddles usually say “Quiet Please,” our southern signs state “Hush Ya’ll.”  I love it and I think candidate Barack Obama privately told certain supporters that in 2008. 

If Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton and Minister Louis Farrakhan were at the front of Obama supporters, that support would have fuel the loyal opposition.  Actually, President Obama spent more time trying to connect with Rep. Paul Ryan and House Republicans than listening to the Congressional Black Caucus.  The CBC likely said, “We have seen that …..brother.”

If you live by the sword, you die by the sword.  Governor Mitt Romney had to stand on the stage with a cast of characters in the GOP primary who push their agenda to the far right and who said outlandish things about non-Republicans.  Well, it is hard for Romney/Ryan to secure the political center now when they failed to denounce crazy talk about Obama’s birthplace, “I want MY country back” and those who (they feel) don’t love America. 

If Obama told the far left “Hush Ya’ll,” Romney likely wishes he could do the same with the most vocal segment of the conservative movement.  But, those activists are not hearing it; they want red meat and they want plenty of it.  That same red meat will drive folks to the polls—not only to keep Obama in, but also to keep the crazies waiting in the wings out.  Again, Romney is a Trojan horse and you know who is inside said horse–the damgum Tea Party.

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Weasels are hard at work planning to win the November elections with voter apathy and non-voter confusion.  As we say in my neighborhood, “you didn’t have that to do.”  Nixon would have won anyway back in the day if he left well enough alone but dark forces on his side got some bright ideas and he didn’t stop them.

Romney is a good guy according to one of my best friends who worked with him in Salt Lake City but he should say more against the sinister strategies of diabolical nerds. We remember that John McCain took the microphone from that lady at his rally who said Obama was an Arab—she did even get the part of the  world right as she was being wrong.  The same John McCain recently stood up against conservative witch-hunters who are sullying the names of Huma Abedin (Hillary Clinton’s right hand) and other federal public servants because their family members might have known someone who knew someone decades ago.  Romney is silent on this Muslim related matter but my friend who worked with him has always been quickly to point out positive aspects Romney’s faith. 

If the witch-hunters logic is correct, I must confess that I broke bread at many a congressional receptions in the 90s with Senator Strom Thurmond and others who were segregationists in the 60s.  Clearly, these fine southerner gentlemen were once associated with Klansmen and Citizen Council members. 

Oh, I have finally discovered why I can get employment in the federal bureaucracy.  It’s because I talked about neckties with the senior senator from South Carolina back in the day and said hello once or twice a week to Rep G.V. Sonny Montgomery of Mississippi in the cafeteria at breakfast.  Montgomery, as in the Montgomery G.I. Bill, was avoiding the member’s dining room because it was fully of members and he was friendlier to lowly staffers that most of the Congressional Black Caucus was.    

I am not writing about voter suppression because one must be registered to be a voter and these weasel-like efforts are based on people not registering because the process takes a little enough and time.  Someone recently changed the driver’s license process in Georgia to require four or five forms of identification—weasels at work with voting in mind.  To combat a weasel or other pest, we must think like them.  These weasels are the same people who privately joke that if you want to hide something from “certain people” you put it in a book.  I am sure they are thinking that a more involved registration process will turn away millions (I can see those naughty nerds smirking and rubbing their hands together.)

The weasels know that the same young people who will stand in line to get in the club will not spend half that time to register and vote.  Look here, rich folks will be fine if Obama or Romney wins but regular people feel presidential and congressional decisions harder.  When I voted Friday in the primary election, a young poll worker looked over my shoulder the whole time.  I wanted to tell the brother that I was voting years before he was born  but he was well-intended.  My mind turned to the hip hop group Third Base and the line from their classic “Pop Goes the Weasel” that goes “I have got a strong mind.. it dosen’t have to be   spoon-fed…I can read, it doesn’t have to be read.”  These rap purists who dreamed about beating up M.C. Hammer and Vanilla Ice, who they saw as sellouts for commercializing rap.

Well, we shouldn’t beat-up the weasels who are playing games with the important right to vote because they can only do what weak people allow them to do.  The margin of victory for McCain over Obama in 2008 in many states could have been erased easily by young people.  So, the real weasels included those who acknowledge Obama’s effort yet won’t get their facebook friends to vote. 

Finally, registering to vote isn’t about Romney and Obama; voting is a long-term powerful action.  If the GOP will be running the South for the rest of our live, we should (at times) select a one of their candidates who is the better or best among their field.  As we can see from the witch hunters, we could do worse than Georgia’s two GOP senators and my new congressman (Austin Scott.)  I can’t help but believe that these three guys privately are telling the nutty elements on their team to cut it out and dial it down.

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People get and give insults in the South all day every day.  If you have thin skin, you should move.  These insults come to mind.

The Michael Basiden Show’s list “8 Reasons Black Women Should Date White Men: First, Black Women should date whoever makes them happy and treats them well.  But, the list from Basiden’s show ticked me off because I don’t think the desired traits are rare among my friends. I did like the list’s view on our community’s glorification of thug life.


Obama vs. Cain: I once worked at the U.S. Congress across the hall from Rep. John Conyers’s office and he had a young bright chief of staff named Julian Epstein.  At my Black college homecoming last weekend, many old classmates asked my opinion of the Herman Cain presidential candidacy and I told them that Obama vs. Cain was great for several different reasons from several different angles. I am insulted by Black people who think the Black electorate isn’t intelligent and crafty enough to vote for Cain in the open primary states if they want to see him faceoff with Obama.

While watching Fox News yesterday (yes, I watch Fox News sometimes), Julian Epstein let the cat out of the bag by saying that Democrats aren’t behind the recent Cain drama because smart Democrats want Cain to be the G.O.P nominee.  Epstein then seriously said that Democrats would donate to Cain’s campaign.  As we say in the South, Julian should “hush” because he is telling family business in the streets but he is so right.

Cain is to Obama as LBJ was to Kennedy: Yes, I can insult my political friends by stating that crass LBJ passed bills that smooth Kennedy didn’t get to before his tragic departure.  Those Kennedy boys were no match for the Dixiecrats but old Lyndon knew how to fight fire with fire.  LBJ said that he was insulted when a lifelong Black employee of his family would drive from Texas to the White House and if she need to use the bathroom in route, she had to squat in the woods. 

Obama is my favorite president but possibly too nice to turn the nation around.  He is too nice with the loyal opposition and he is too nice with his base regarding personal responsibility.  If you read the 8 reasons Black women should date White men, you will see that the president and the first lady could say more about their development and growth relative to teaching the next generation of all colors.  If Obama won’t get brass, Cain certainly would and that might be the answer.

Herman Cain, Bill Clinton and Thomas Gipson:  I worked at Albany State University with old school southern gentleman Thomas Gipson..God rest his soul.  Mr. Gipson, like Rev. Jeremiah Wright, had knowledge and wisdom for you everyday but he got a pass or was grandfathered on political correctness.  Gip said that the university’s harassment policies were nonsense and that he would never stop complimenting lovely women. 

Bill Clinton, one of my three favorite presidents, insulted me with that whole Monica mess as did Bush 43 with weapons of mass destruction.  If I gave Clinton and Bush passes, Herman Cain gets one also.  If people from Albany, Georgia, want to know what Cain likely said, they should remember Thomas Gipson and know that what was once tradition is now litigation.

In summary, “yes we can.”  We can reelect President Obama.  We can elect a Georgian as president if not Obama.  We can better position ourselves to enhance the lives of Black women.  We can understand if said women find happiness elsewhere.  We can understand that no candidate is perfect and neither are we.  We can use insults as positive dialog starters.   

We can put on that Sade’s remake of Timmy Thomas’s 1972 classic “Why Can’t We Live Together,” sit back and explain to Cain’s supporters why they are alienating the massive political center.  You can’t win the White House without the center.

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Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is on a mission to fix Washington and he is starting with campaign donations.  Schultz, who spends more on employee health benefits than coffee, is challenging his fellow CEOs to put money that normally goes to campaigns into job creation.

On this blog, we have been saying that for years.  In Georgia, the only congressional districts with a real contests next year will be the newly created district in North Georgia and the reconfigured 12th in the Augusta area.  I say the rest of the incumbents are safe and should spend time finding solutions rather than dialing for dollars.  Oh, when someone gives you dollars, you can best believe they will want something for it later. 

Congressional candidates should consider voluntarily limiting their warchests to say 200K because an outstanding legislator doesn’t need to scary off opponents with big money.  If and when I see them with big money, my first question is where did they get it. 

Schultz, like Donald Trump, is sounding the alarm on the fact that America does make things anymore and that is the reason for low job numbers.  The guy makes some great points.  He is to the Middle what the Tea Party is to the Right and that is a good thing.



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On Chuck Todd’s MSNBC show recently, he had a segment asking the question “Is this the worst congress of all-time.”  While I am not sure about all-time, it might be the worst of my adult life for the reasons discussed by former Senator John Breaux and Political Scientist Norm Ornstein.


Congress and the White House in the past started with the center (where most Americans still reside politically) and worked on the Left and Right.  Today, policy starts on the Left and Right and goes nowhere.  I think 90% of congress were decent people when elected but they get that “gang mentality” from their political parties and it’s battle battle battle.

Who wants to go through life constantly pissed off?  Senator Breaux was an endangered species as a moderate to conservative Democrat.  The segment rightfully pointed out that there is no more overlap in congress today since centrists like Breaux exited.  In the past, there were a few southern Democrats who were more conservative than California Republicans. 

Why can’t members work together?  When did compromise become a dirty word?  I personally refuse to let anyone pit me against fellow Americans.   Some of MSNBC is slowly becoming the same as Fox News.  If the negativity fostered by media continues, a center-based, anti-party centrists movement might be in order.  


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I am a good American who wants the best people governing.  While I support candidates I find competent of any party, a quagmire results from deciding if I should hope for an opponent who is easier for my guy to beat or hope for a quality person who would serve well if elected.

Obama is my guy in 2012 but I have issues with friends who gleefully want the worst GOP candidate in November.  What if that zany person actually wins?  Hillary Clinton, Mitt Romney, Mitch Daniels and Jon Huntsman are presidential material and if the economy doesn’t improve Obama himself might see the logic in letting someone else have at it.   Newt, Newt, my homeboy Newt is clearly an ideas guy whose intelligence and vision would be helpful to the nation but he likes to toss fire and that’s not cool.

In Georgia congressional politics, moderates must face the reality that Democrats help people who don’t bother voting—oh, they can go to every freaking high school football and basketball game but can’t find 10 minutes to vote.  If elections are to be decided in the primaries, we should support reasonable GOP candidates running against out of touch candidates or help out of touch candidates better understand all of the electorate.  If not, we might have elected officials who developed their points of view in a bubble…a strange angry bubble where everyone is like everyone else.   Cain vs. Obama would be cool with me because Cain would say what needs to be said to regular folks. 

I think Democrats and Black folks should spend some time listening to Herman Cain and the rest of the GOP field.  Their concerns are valid and solutions are often sensible—their methods and disposition need some work.  In a strange twist, listening to the conservative side helps President Obama because moderates better understand why he is seeking common ground with them.  I am a positive guy and if any conservative wants to talk about why their temperament is often off-putting, I am right here and eager to teach and learn.  Bottomline: constantly angry is no way to go through life. 

Columnist Cynthia Tucker wrote a nice one this week about Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss catching heat for negotiating in the Gang of Six group.  Why in the world would someone dislike an elected official for doing his job?  Tucker is correct: the ultra conservatives and the ultra liberals need to stop tripping.  We should remember that these two groups are a fraction of the American people but they are vocally involved and we all know that the squeaky wheel gets the grease.  


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Every southerner should be mapmaking during the redistricting process because our representation for the next ten years is on the table.  We shouldn’t leave it to the state legislators alone because they work for us.  There should be a smart phone app for redistricting. 

Because I am watching The Borgias on Showtime, ice-cold Niccolo Machiavelli, Pope Alexander VI and Amerigo Vespucci come to mind when think about our mapmaking.  I read in Machiavelli’s The Prince that one should kiss his enemy on the left cheek then the right cheek—no wondering why Tupac liked his writings. Pope Alexander VI (Rodrigo Borgia) stopped at nothing to get the territorial arrangements he wanted and so should we.   

How could Christopher Columbus “discover” a land with millions of inhabitants?  Columbus didn’t know where he was or what he had but Vespucci came back from current South America and reported to the d’Medici family that the land was larger than anticipated and not the Asia described by Ptolemy or Marco Polo.  It must be a New World or new continent.  In 1507, mapmaker Martin Waldseemuller produced a world map and named the new continent America after Vespucci’s first name.

It’s my turn to produce a congressional district of Georgia (actually, software programs for this purpose are online.)

It’s my turn to produce a congressional district of Georgia (actually, software programs for this purpose are online.)

My map would feature:

  • Going back to the 1992 map for the second congressional district (my area) with parts of Bibb County joining Albany and Columbus again.  The Republicans in the 8th District clearly don’t want that Macon concentration of Democrat voters and we would take then gladly.
  • Thomas, Brooks and maybe the rest of Lowndes County should be put into the 1st congressional district because they hate being in a moderate district.  Congressional candidate Mike Keown ran strong last year and he would be the heir apparent when Jack Kingston leaves for bigger things or returns to lovely costal Georgia.  Yes, Keown is congressional material but not in a swing district.  
  • Because I want to see a congressional district that can elect an African American GOPer member of congress, I would make the new 14th District a collection of moderate Democrats that give headaches to current GOP members but just enough Republicans to win the seat—Hall, Clarke, etc.  I want a brother or sister who would say once and for all, “stick to the issues and enough with the nonsense.”  Blacks would vote a candidate like that.

Of course, the U.S. Justice Department must review the congressional maps and I am hearing that all of Chatham County might go from the 1st District into the 12th District in an effort to improve the chances for a GOPer the 12th.  All of this is wild speculations but every Georgian should have at it.  If we have learned anything from the actions of the Tea Party Movement, it would be that elected officials work for us and we have a say.

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There is a controversial painting of all American presidents that includes President Obama standing on the U.S. Constitution.  The guy was president of the Harvard Law Review and a University of Chicago constitutional law professor but he doesn’t respect the Constitution.  Really?

I saw the painting hanging in the district office of U.S. Rep. Austin Scott.  Readers of this blog know I appreciated GOPer Scott removing Rep. Jim Marshall because Marshall, a law scholar himself, decided that Speaker Pelosi and the White House wasn’t his cup of tea.  The two Georgia U.S. Senators, Scott and Rep. Jack Kingston are the most bearable Republicans in Georgia because they are good guys in person.  But, the ultra conservatives are busy and seemingly require that the GOP leaders limit input from Democrats.  Kingston has a well-earned reputation for going to policy-hostile events and breaking down his voting record.  That’s how you do it and Bishop, Barrow and even Marshall did the same.

If the picture is in Scott’s office, it is there because Scott feels that the White House’s policy contradict the framers intend; Scott is on a fiscal correction mission.  When Rep. Sanford Bishop was a freshman, his Washington office initially didn’t have Georgia flag outside the front door.  In an interesting twist, Bishop got the old flag (stars and bars included) but state legislator Austin Scott was (I think) the only GOPer who support changing that flag and he caught hell for it.

The artist who created “The Forgotten Man” said he knew the work was a little strong and I personally think it is too strong.  I always respect President George W. Bush and argued with those who thought he wasn’t bright—dumb people rarely graduate from Yale.  The birther junk and whatever comes next are insults and thank you to those of the other side who want to stick to the issues.  I saw the facebook video statement of Rep. Scott regarding the killing of Bin Laden and yes, he was of the few conservatives who gave President Obama credit. 

Democrats have always allowed Bishop, Barrow, Marshall and other Blue Dogs flexibility to included conservative elements in their actions because conservatives are Georgians too.  I am concerned that the far Right will not allow the same leeway to any GOP members of congress.  Of course, the views of real liberals fall on death’s ear but even moderates and centrists should keep an eye on redistricting and hope that they end up in moderate districts.   

When Jon Stewart said that Bill O’Reilly was the “thinnest kid at fat camp,” he meant that O’Reilly was the best person at Fox News and one might say the same about Sen. Saxby Chambliss (Gang of Six) and Austin Scott.    

Jon McNaughton’s The Forgotten Man is art and art is designed (like Spike Lee’s and Tyler Perry’s work) to provoke thought.  You be the judge.

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Project Logic GA is starting a year long, monthly effort design to broaden our discussion of major issues, cultivate the next group of policy leaders and create a web-based/actual meetup network of results-oriented voters.  We believe, the major political parties, the media and special interest groups often execute their agenda while the people seem like pawns on a chessboard.    

In Georgia, the current 12th, 8th and 2nd congressional districts join the likely new north Georgia congressional districts as the competitive districts during election season.  With the importance of issues and policies, we will select one major topic per month and “put it on the table” for our panel of contributors.  We are inviting contributors to chime in with a brief paragraph or two on the monthly topic with the hope that a dozen issues will be discussed by this time next year—an ebook of non-Atlanta Georgia issues because the ATL gets enough ink all ready.

The party bosses and major political players in the Atlanta enjoy battling the other side in a blood sport.  Some feel that the rest of Georgia is more genteel and would prefer a civil approach to moving our state, our South and our nation forward.  Which some folks love “fussing and beefing,” moderates and centrists generally acknowledge good points from both sides.  Who really wants to go through life with a constant vibe of loathing, hate and conflict?  

In an interesting twist, we recognize the success of the Tea Party Movement in mobilizing those who feel they are Taxed Enough Already.  While their methods and techniques are “interesting,” their passion and networking savvy should be respected and emulated.  To borrow from boxing great Ali, “they shook up the world” with motivated voters while greater numbers of voters stood idly by.    

We hope that this project will generate a facebook-based network of Georgians who will be informed and focused because a relatively small number of voters on both political ends shouldn’t select leadership and drive policy. 

 Helen Blocker Adams, Augusta talk radio host, Project Logic GA blogger and serious optimist, recently wrote the book “Unlikely Allies: 8 Steps to Bridging Divides that Impact Leadership” about people coming together to address community problems.  We love books and blogs better when they serve as the catalyst for understanding and growth. 

The Unlikely Allies Project of Project Logic GA endeavors to:

  • Hear from contributors over time on major issues; cultivating the next generation of leadership.
  • Gather a collection of facebook friends from Georgia’s competitive congressional districts who are interested in policy discussions among unlikely allies.
  • Bring Georgians together in various social settings to humanize everyone in the political discussions.

During a trip across Georgia last week, the Eagles’ song “The Long Run” came on the radio and hearing it was timely.  In Georgia, we need to think about the long run or long term development of our human resources.  When Don Henley sang, “Well I don’t understand why you don’t treat yourself better…do the crazy things that you do,” my mind turned to starting this needed effort.

Eagles’ “Long Run”


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Cokie and Steve Roberts wrote a must-read column recently about President Obama events in Florida with former Florida Governor Jeb Bush.  The Roberts pointed out that the president knows that moderates are vital to his success and that he feels that he leads a nation and not just a political party.

The following congressional stats in the article will surprise anyone.     

Thirty years ago, when the National Journal started keeping these records, 58 senators occupied the middle ground between the polar extremes. Last year, there were none. As Trent Lott, the former Republican leader of the Senate, told the Journal: “Over the years, there is no question that the middle in the Senate has shrunk considerably.” 

If anything, the House has seen an even more dramatic shift toward ideological purity. In 1982, 334 House members posted ratings somewhere between the most liberal Republican and most conservative Democrat. By last year, the number had shriveled to seven, and today all but one of them — Republican Walter Jones of North Carolina — has left Congress.


Certain forces in politics get their bread and butter from promoting division among Americans but we need more bridge builders who seek to acknowledge the real battle of the United States vs. The World.  Haters on both sides push the fear factor but at the end of the day your coworkers or the people on the other side of town are likely decent folks.  I came across a prank video from a Spanish language  T.V. show that humorously use the image of the kid from the horror movie “the Ring” to scare people in a real hotel hallway.  As FDR said, the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.  The national debt and unemployment numbers are scary but real folks generally aren’t.   This blog is preparing a project that will be all about cultivating the next group of reasonable leaders.    

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Our prayers are with those affected by the tragic events in Arizona.  Project Logic GA has always supported a sensible political and policy debate and fostering a bridge over the divide-that’s why there is a bridge on the homepage.  Normal people can have a spirited and at times mischievous debate but we know that sick minds might take it too far do the unthinkable.  This is not a game.

It’s an appropriate time to read some past blog post that relate to having a less toxic discourse in the political arena—so help us God.   People often ask congressional staffers if they served our country–referring to military service.  Gabe Zimmerman died serving our country.










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I watched Denzel Washington’s movie The Book of Eli in the wee hours of New Year’s Day.  Washington’s character was protecting the last known King James Bible in a post nuclear war world.  We forget how important and useful the Bible’s messages and lessons are when (to be frank) we are busying sinning. 

Yesterday at my church and evidently everyone’s church, the pastor use Philippians 3:13 “…forgetting the things which are behind and stretching forward to the things which are before.”  I am so glad Denzel got sage information like that into to the rebuilding world and we need to think about that as we start a new congress, a new year and a new presidential selection process.

Come on: we all know that the political parties will be bickering in the next few days with the Democrats being afraid of the lefties and the Republicans being concerned about pleasing the far right.  They should all please the American people in general and Americans should get a fresh start with a mindset geared toward self-determination rather than governmental solutions for self-created personal drama.  I need to hear that from President Obama and smart conservatives should dig that vibe from Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, a good dude who will likely be passed over in the GOP presidential race.

Millions of other Americans and I need a fresh start with a new job and the mad scramble for employment is starting to seem like the quest for water in The Book of Eli.  Spoiler alert for those with HBO On Demand: Denzel’s character is blind in the whole film but surprisingly he can sense things slighted people miss. 

They say that in the land of the blind the one-eyed man is king.  I say people “between opportunities” in this economy will quickly tell the employed to work hard, sharpen skills and watch their backs.  While you are grumbling at your work place, some enthusiastic people would love to be in your position. 

At the end of the Book of Eli, a newly produced Bible was printed and a copy was put on a self between the Torah and the Quran.  Viewers get the impression that a lack of tolerance and/or  faith-based conflicts started the war.  Governing isn’t a game and pitting people against each other is reckless.

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At the end of this rough election cycle, we realize that the 2012 cycle starts before the freshmen members of congress can be sworn into office; it’s a never-ending process.  Some blogger friends are assessing the amount of “free time” spent online and hearing the advice of friends and grumbling family about doing for free what other get paid to do.  It’s like that free milk and the cow bride advice.  

I can’t understand while some in the political arena are eager to battle in the next election rather than positioning their guy in a manner that discourages future opponents.  In Georgia congressional politics, former Senator Sam Nunn is the gold standard because he created a situation in which his service was uniquely his; the man transcended political parties.  With the fluid nature of politics these days, tradition is a thing of the past and anything can happen.  

I will tell you what I want: a political cafeteria plan where citizens can pick and choose aspects of candidates, officeholders, parties and groups without buying the whole blue plate special.  For example, my favorite budget fast food lunch is Taco Bell’s seven layer burrito (.89 cents) on top of a Burger King side salad ($1.00).  If you toss in a bag of nacho chips from the grocery, you have a tasty balanced meal that is easy on the wallet.  To me, the best burgers are from Wendy’s and the best fries are McDonalds.  The ultimate fast food meal might involve stopping at several places but you get what you want.

We should do the same with politics and policy; one party is good at several things and the other major party is better at other issues.  If you toss in the Tea Party, the Green Movement, Progressives and Libertarians, the process gets much-needed range. 

I support politicians who make every effort to have their decisions reflect the views of all area voters.  My concern with the far Right is that they often believe they are always right about everything and ignore those who disagree.  Mind you, the far right might actually be right but ignoring folks isn’t cool in a region with our troubled history.  The endangered southern Blue Dog Democrats has a well-earned reputation of serving their Democrat base yet also serving their conservative constituents as much as possible.  So, urban liberals in Blue Dog congressional districts allowed this flexibility because it is the fair sharing of elected officials. 

With half of the House Blue Dogs gone, we will see if the same courtesy is given by freshmen GOPers or will they follow tradition by ignore those who voted for the other guy.  To form “a more perfect union,” leaders should work together and reach for common ground. I, for one, want the House and Senate freshmen to study the word comity. 

Lastly, the surviving Blue Dogs need to be more vocal in the Democrat Casus or the real liberals will take over and move the party too far left for most rural Americans.

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It’s the article that I first saw in the Albany Herald that everyone is reading and discussing.   Frankly, addressing this subject should be priority one for the CBC. Much governmental money is spent dealing with drama that is rooted in this article.  As the Chuck D said, “When there is a man in the house, the bull—- stops. ”  This discussion should include the fact that Oprah could be an unwed mother but the bigger problem is people having children before they have financial security.  Either Hill Harper or Barrack Obama wrote in his book that parenthood would be better in people wait until their mid-twenty…at least. 


Blacks struggle with 72 percent unwed mothers rate


Associated Press
Published Monday, November 08, 2010 7:30 AM


HOUSTON — One recent day at Dr. Natalie Carroll’s OB-GYN practice, located inside a low-income apartment complex tucked between a gas station and a freeway, 12 pregnant black women come for consultations. Some bring their children or their mothers. Only one brings a husband.

Things move slowly here. Women sit shoulder-to-shoulder in the narrow waiting room, sometimes for more than an hour. Carroll does not rush her mothers in and out. She wants her babies born as healthy as possible, so Carroll spends time talking to the mothers about how they should care for themselves, what she expects them to do — and why they need to get married.

Seventy-two percent of black babies are born to unmarried mothers today, according to government statistics. This number is inseparable from the work of Carroll, an obstetrician who has dedicated her 40-year career to helping black women.

“The girls don’t think they have to get married. I tell them children deserve a mama and a daddy. They really do,” Carroll says from behind the desk of her office, which has cushioned pink-and-green armchairs, bars on the windows, and a wooden “LOVE” carving between two African figurines. Diamonds circle Carroll’s ring finger.

As the issue of black unwed parenthood inches into public discourse, Carroll is among the few speaking boldly about it. And as a black woman who has brought thousands of babies into the world, who has sacrificed income to serve Houston’s poor, Carroll is among the few whom black women will actually listen to.

“A mama can’t give it all. And neither can a daddy, not by themselves,” Carroll says. “Part of the reason is because you can only give that which you have. A mother cannot give all that a man can give. A truly involved father figure offers more fullness to a child’s life.”

Statistics show just what that fullness means. Children of unmarried mothers of any race are more likely to perform poorly in school, go to prison, use drugs, be poor as adults, and have their own children out of wedlock.

The black community’s 72 percent rate eclipses that of most other groups: 17 percent of Asians, 29 percent of whites, 53 percent of Hispanics and 66 percent of Native Americans were born to unwed mothers in 2008, the most recent year for which government figures are available. The rate for the overall U.S. population was 41 percent.

This issue entered the public consciousness in 1965, when a now famous government report by future senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan described a “tangle of pathology” among blacks that fed a 24 percent black “illegitimacy” rate. The white rate then was 4 percent.

Many accused Moynihan, who was white, of “blaming the victim:” of saying that black behavior, not racism, was the main cause of black problems. That dynamic persists. Most talk about the 72 percent has come from conservative circles; when influential blacks like Bill Cosby have spoken out about it, they have been all but shouted down by liberals saying that a lack of equal education and opportunity are the true root of the problem.

Even in black churches, “nobody talks about it,” Carroll says. “It’s like some big secret.” But there are signs of change, of discussion and debate within and outside the black community on how to address the growing problem.

Research has increased into links between behavior and poverty, scholars say. Historically black Hampton University recently launched a National Center on African American Marriages and Parenting. There is a Marry Your Baby Daddy Day, founded by a black woman who was left at the altar, and a Black Marriage Day, which aims “to make healthy marriages the norm rather than the exception.”

In September, Princeton University and the liberal Brookings Institution released a collection of “Fragile Families” reports on unwed parents. And an online movement called “No Wedding No Womb” ignited a fierce debate that included strong opposition from many black women.

“There are a lot of sides to this,” Carroll says. “Part of our community has lost its way.”


There are simple arguments for why so many black women have children without marriage.

The legacy of segregation, the logic goes, means blacks are more likely to attend inferior schools. This creates a high proportion of blacks unprepared to compete for jobs in today’s economy, where middle-class industrial work for unskilled laborers has largely disappeared.

The drug epidemic sent disproportionate numbers of black men to prison, and crushed the job opportunities for those who served their time. Women don’t want to marry men who can’t provide for their families, and welfare laws created a financial incentive for poor mothers to stay single.

If you remove these inequalities, some say, the 72 percent will decrease.

“It’s all connected. The question should be, how has the black family survived at all?” says Maria Kefalas, co-author of “Promises I Can Keep: Why Poor Women Put Motherhood Before Marriage.”

The book is based on interviews with 162 low-income single mothers. One of its conclusions is that these women see motherhood as one of life’s most fulfilling roles — a rare opportunity for love and joy, husband or no husband.

Sitting in Carroll’s waiting room, Sherhonda Mouton watches all the babies with the tender expression of a first-time mother, even though she’s about to have her fourth child. Inside her purse is a datebook containing a handwritten ode to her children, titled “One and Only.” It concludes:

“You make the hardest tasks seem light with everything you do.

“How blessed I am, how thankful for my one and only you.”

Mouton, 30, works full time as a fast-food manager on the 3 p.m. to 1 a.m. shift. She’s starting classes to become a food inspector.

“My children are what keep me going, every day,” she says. “They give me a lot of hope and encouragement.” Her plans for them? “College, college, college.”

On Mouton’s right shoulder, the name of her oldest child, Zanevia, is tattooed around a series of scars. When Zanevia was an infant, Mouton’s drug-addled fiance came home one night and started shooting. Mouton was hit with six bullets; Zanevia took three and survived.

“This man was the love of my life,” Mouton says. He’s serving a 60-year sentence. Another man fathered her second and third children; Mouton doesn’t have good things to say about him. The father of her unborn child? “He’s around. He helps with all the kids.”

She does not see marriage in her future.

“It’s another obligation that I don’t need,” Mouton says. “A good man is hard to find nowadays.”

Mouton thinks it’s a good idea to encourage black women to wait for marriage to have children. However, “what’s good for you might not be good for me.,” Yes, some women might need the extra help of a husband. “I might do a little better, but I’m doing fine now. I’m very happy because of my children.”

“I woke up today at six o’clock,” she says. “My son was rubbing my stomach, and my daughter was on the other side. They’re my angels.”


Christelyn Karazin has four angels of her own. She had the first with her boyfriend while she was in college; they never married. Her last three came after she married another man and became a writer and homemaker in an affluent Southern California suburb.

In September, Karazin, who is black, marshaled 100 other writers and activists for the online movement No Wedding No Womb, which she calls “a very simplified reduction of a very complicated issue.”

“I just want better for us,” Karazin says. “I have four kids to raise in this world. It’s about what kind of world do we want.”

“We’ve spent the last 40 years discussing the issues of how we got here. How much more discussion, how many more children have to be sacrificed while we still discuss?”

The reaction was swift and ferocious. She had many supporters, but hundreds of others attacked NWNW online as shallow, anti-feminist, lacking solutions, or a conservative tool. Something else about Karazin touched a nerve: She’s married to a white man and has a book about mixed-race relationships coming out.

Blogger Tracy Clayton, who posted a vicious parody of NWNW’s theme song, said the movement focuses on the symptom instead of the cause.

“It’s trying to kill a tree by pulling leaves off the limbs. And it carries a message of shame,” said Clayton, a black woman born to a single mother. “I came out fine. My brother is married with children. (NWNW) makes it seem like there’s something immoral about you, like you’re contributing to the ultimate downfall of the black race. My mom worked hard to raise me, so I do take it personally.”

Demetria Lucas, relationships editor at Essence, the magazine for black women, declined an invitation for her award-winning personal blog to endorse NWNW. Lucas, author of the forthcoming book “A Belle in Brooklyn: Advice for Living Your Single Life & Enjoying Mr. Right Now,” says plenty of black women want to be married but have a hard time finding suitable black husbands.

Lucas says 42 percent of all black women and 70 percent of professional black women are unmarried. “If you can’t get a husband, who am I to tell you no, you can’t be a mom?” she asks. “A lot of women resent the idea that you’re telling me my chances of being married are like 1 in 2, it’s a crapshoot right now, but whether I can have a family of my own is based on whether a guy asks me to marry him or not.”

Much has been made of the lack of marriageable black men, Lucas says, which has created the message that “there’s no real chance of me being married, but because some black men can’t get their stuff together I got to let my whole world fall apart. That’s what the logic is for some women.”

That logic rings false to Amy Wax, a law professor at the University of Pennsylvania, whose book “Race, Wrongs and Remedies: Group Justice in the 21st Century” argues that even though discrimination caused blacks’ present problems, only black action can cure them.

“The black community has fallen into this horribly dysfunctional equilibrium” with unwed mothers, Wax says in an interview. “It just doesn’t work.”

“Blacks as a group will never be equal while they have this situation going on, where the vast majority of children do not have fathers in the home married to their mother, involved in their lives, investing in them, investing in the next generation.”

“The 21st century for the black community is about building human capital,” says Wax, who is white. “That is the undone business. That is the unmet need. That is the completion of the civil rights mission.”


All the patients are gone now from Carroll’s office — the prison guard, the young married couple, the 24-year-old with a 10-year-old daughter and the father of her unborn child in jail. The final patient, an 18-year-old who dropped out of college to have her first child, departs by taxi, alone.

“I can’t tell you that I feel deep sadness, because I don’t,” says Carroll, who has two grown children of her own. “And not because I’m not fully aware of what’s happening to them. It’s because I do all that I can to help them help themselves.”

Carroll is on her second generation of patients now, delivering the babies of her babies. She does not intend to stop anytime soon. Her father, a general practitioner in Houston, worked right up until he died.

Each time she brings a child into this world, she thinks about what kind of life it will have.

“I tell the mothers, if you decide to have a baby, you decide to have a different kind of life because you owe them something. You owe them something better than you got.”

“I ask them, what are you doing for your children? Do you want them to have a better life than you have? And if so, what are you going to do about it?”



On the Web: No Wedding No Womb: http://bit.ly/cBUuac Demetria Lucas: http://bit.ly/9UbGmS Amy Wax: http://bit.ly/dwNsOu


Jesse Washington covers race and ethnicity for The Associated Press. He is reachable at jwashington(at)ap.org.

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It’s 5:15 a.m. on Day Lights Saving Time Sunday morning and my clock just fell back.  In American politics, it feels like we are falling back in time also.  Are we near a cultural Civil war and isn’t “civil” war the ultimate oxymoron.  The one thing that is sure is that we need to have a better understanding of other’s points of view and the governmental process under which we function and live.

The Tea Party is a good place to start.  By Tea Party, I mean the original Boston Tea Party.  We have conveniently forgotten that the British taxes at the center of the debate were to recoup funds spent on the colonies’ defense during the French and Indian War.  War and defense cost money. The Boston Tea Party wasn’t a protest inside the current form of government; it was an effort to overthrown the current form of government and some current protest today have the same thing in mind.

President Obama and most reasonable Americans know that the fundamental concerns of the Tea Party Movement are valid: federal spending and debt; size and role of government; and grow of entitlements. The nation would be better if all America “carried themselves” with a moral compass and a sense of shame as we did in the past.  The government currently addresses problems that shouldn’t be problems at all.  However, extremists on both ends of the political spectrum would ignore the U.S. Constitution and the foundation of this great nation. 

It would be socialism if the government provided a nice house for every American.  The government should provide a fair climate where every American has an opportunity to grow and prospers but if that doesn’t happen, you deal with the cards resulting from your actions or inactions.  On the other hands, extremists on the far Right would interweave church and government for better moral fiber.  Would America be better if we all followed a faith?  Yes.  But, the question becomes should the government mandate this faith and which one?  As much as we respect them, the founding fathers at times goofed. Slavery is one obvious time and some believe that Christianity should have been the official faith with tolerance for other faiths.

We shouldn’t play with the intent of the founders or the foundation of this country.  We are in a mini Civil War in the South base largely on energy policy and health care policy.  President Carter was correct in the 1970s: we need a comprehensive energy policy to end our dependence on foreign oil.  The Cap and Trade provision of the energy legislation passed by the U.S. House fueled the Tea Party protest. New York Time columnist Thomas Friedman has written several great books on our energy futures and we must make tough decisions and changes.  Of course, the agriculture community gets my deference because we all must eat the food they grow but we must figure out farming methods that use less energy.  The last Farm Bill promotes research on producing renewable energy.

I must be half asleep because I am about to type: the problem with President Obama.  Okay Tea Party people here it is: We Obama supporters and President Obama himself know that some things could have been done better or differently. The same could be said about Bush 43 who I actually liked on some level. President Obama is real…straight real…too real.  We elected him to implement big changes but the adoring crowds weren’t listening to the guy.  He constantly said, “It won’t be easy…It’s won’t happen overnight….I can’t do it alone…we must do the hard part.” 

As quiet as it is kept, Michelle Robinson Obama was raised in the model conservative family environment and if she starts speaking freely and sternly about how we are “carrying ourselves,” her importance in history might overshadow her husband.  The residual benefit Sanford Bishop’s congressional service was always his positive image for the all kids.  The Huxtables on the Cosby Show and the Obamas in the White House have the same benefit.  The Georgia GOP botched the opportunity to have Dr. Deborah Honeycutt in Congress as a conservative example from a southern family but Mario Rubio and Austin Scott will be there to provide a fact-base form of conservatism that moves the nation forward with dialog rather than fear.

Obama’s The Audacity of Hope outlined problems and solutions with healthcare.  He pointed out that preventive care that comes with having every American seeing a doctor regularly could save billions and fund changes.  Obama was half right because what was also needed was far Right teeth. I don’t mean a dental plan; I mean public policy with teeth, bite or strong consequences.  The kids in my family love their Uncle Teddy and their uninsured Uncle Teddy has made diet and exercise adjustments to stay under 240 pounds.  A doctor would tell me that 260, 280 or 300 pounds would trigger health problems that require expensive treatment. 

Wait a second; if the doctor and the healthcare plan told Uncle Teddy that buffets could lead to a certain point where expensive treatment would be self-funded or not administered, I basically dug my own grave and they should spend that money on a nice fat double-breasted suit for my funeral.  It sounds cold but that is the reality of avoiding taxing or charging some people to pay for life choices of other.  While we are working out on the tennis courts, cats drop by with triple cheese burgers in hand. “What’s up, man.”   What’s up?…your cholesterol levels and your blood pressure…that’s what’s up.

These mini Civil Wars could be avoided if good conservatives worked with moderates sincerely.  In the South, we often find those individuals who feel they are more American than others for some reason.  I am proud that I had a dorm assignment at UGA and briefly attended grad school at  UF (Go Gators) but I knew that I want to be at my HCBU to study from people who reminded us that we helped built this great nation for free while not free.  We actually toiled in southern fields for over a hundred years before America was America in 1776.  How difference is “go back to Africa” from “I want my country back.”  President Obama  likely thinks that we can all join hands and sing “This land is your land…this land is my land” but he did grow up in my dirty South so he doesn’t know that no one is giving up or shares money and power without a struggle.

Oops, I am flashing back to those revolutionary days of youth when radicals hit us with too much “knowledge and wisdom.”  That stuff could come in measured dosages.  From the Boston Tea Party to John Brown to George Wallace to the Black Panthers to the current Tea Party, Americans must remember that our opinions and plans must be coordinated within our framework of government and among all Americans.  If the people decide to move slowly, not at all or in another direction, we must respect the process.

After the ballot drama Bush v. Gore, Democrats acknowledged President Bush as leader of this nation.  When President Bush decided that military actions in Iraq rather than Afghanistan only was the course, I respected that jacked-up decision (Cheney lied to 43).  Oh, but don’t let regular people elected Obama; folks start talking about second amendment remedies and secession.    

Big corporations, unions and lobbyists are fueling these civil wars…pitting Americans against Americans.  It is shame that some politicians on both sides think the objective for the next two years is winning the White House in 2012.  The clear objective is to reduce federal spending while growing the economy and creating the climate for job creation while keeping us safe.

New members of the congress should put the best interest of the nation above partisan politics because the people in this fast internet age have no problem tossing those guys out every two years…work together.  

I need to go because it is communion Sunday at church.  Yes, Democrats and moderates go to church and try to practice what is preached during the rest of the week. During my lifetime, overhyped people killed folks while they were worshipping in church…be careful with that fun rhetoric because civil wars are nothing with which to play.  


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The Albany Herald endorsed Mike Keown for congress in Georgia’s second district over Sanford Bishop.  I think that newspaper is wrong because Bishop is uniquely qualified and appropriate to represent the urban/rural; liberal/conservative and yes Black/White hodgepodge that is the 2nd District.

Keown is a conservative pastor from a very rural area and speaks with a command similar to a stern father chastising a wayward child.  That type sternness has been at the center of the far Right’s reaction to the election of President Barrack Obama.  In our system of government, most American adults have the right to elect officials and the actions of those public servants should reflect the will of the people.

That concept sounds clear in theory but we know that a more detailed explanation is that elected officials do the work of those Americans that vote, vote, vote.  President Obama and the Democrats did well in southwest Georgia in 2008 and those election results gave direction to Rep. Sanford Bishop.  For some reason, the Tea Party division of the conservative movement feels their votes count heavier that other Americans’ vote.  It must because they are smarter or something.

If Rep. Sanford Bishop did everything the Tea Party Movement wanted during the last two years, he would have been functioning in an unconstitutional manner because he would have ignored the desires of the majority that put him in office.  As a moderate, I could accept a Republican taking this swing seat if the guy was a policy wonk like Austin Scott or a conservative with a personal history of talking with various communities like Rep. Jack Kingston, Senator Johnny Iasakson or former Senator Sam Nunn.

Bishop came to congress 18 years ago after serving in a majority White state legislature seat; he prides himself on relating to and having a comfort level with everyone.  As a blogger, I watched the Keown campaign from day one and rarely saw them working to build relationships with my community.  The tone in Tea Partiers’ voice when then say “Barrack Obama,” “Sanford Bishop” and “Nancy Pelosi” is something different from regular Republicans.  You know the tone and if you have forgotten it shame on you.  Those who don’t remember history are doomed to repeat it.

Keown ran a strong race but some other congressional district or statewide position would be better for him and better for us.  Bishop won’t win this election if the people who gave him a mandate in 2008 don’t vote on November 2. 

An Albany city commissioner, who is also a Darton College professor, told the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call that Rep. Sanford Bishop was a $100 million dollar industry in south Georgia based on this position on the House Appropriations Committee.  In one of the poorest areas of the nation, the voters shouldn’t drop a congressman who secures funding for economic development, training and job creation. 

This hard campaign has served the purpose of making Rep. Bishop aware that he must be in the middle of helping President Obama shape more-moderate policy if he wants a second term.  And that’s it; the reason far right conservatives want Bishop gone from the Democrat Caucus is so the remaining Dems are so liberal that the presidency will go their way in 2012.  The Tea Party candidate for president will be Sarah Palin and keeping Palin out of the White House starts with voting for Bishop on Tuesday. 

Did the Albany Herald ever ask Mike Keown about his opinion of a possible Palin presidency?   Keown keeps bring up my old boss Rep. Charles Hatcher, who Bishop defeated in 1992.  As one of the last loyal Hatcherheads, I can say Hatcher always said you don’t get rid of committee chairs and appropriators because they deliver for home.   Hatcher knew the Farm Bill like the back of his hand and wouldn’t  jeopardize the provisions of interest to south Georgia by bouncing Bishop during tough times.

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