McBerry issues a threat.

Apparently supporters of erstwhile GOP Gubernatorial candidate Ray McBerry say: “Do what we want or else.”

According to the Political Insider, McBerry wants to sup with Sonny and force him to sign some sort of document:

“What they’ve(McBerry’s supporters) told me almost universally is that if Sonny’s folks don’t sit down with me in the very near future and put some things in writing, they’re either sitting it out or they’re voting for Mark (Taylor),

250 comments

  1. LINDA says:

    Anyone, that thinks the flaggers are not an important voting bloc is a fool! But as P T Barnum said, “there is a sucker born every minute.” My conservative estimeate of the 40,000 voters is that you can multiply that number by at least 8 for the November election. If Sonny does not take the flaggers seriously, he may be looking at running for a county commissioner position in Houston County. I do not think you people understand that this is not, and I repeat not a Republican state. The same people that voted Sonny in can vote him out. President Bush won with a widespread margin because of the war with people not wanting change in the middle of the “war on terror.” That momentum is not going to carry the GOP now. Too many scandals, too many skeletons in the closet. And I predict 2008 will be a tidal wave of scandals.

  2. LINDA says:

    I am voting for Sonny this November. I am not a flagger for those that may want to jump in and say some smart comment. I could never vote for Mark Taylor! The GOP in Georgia is too liberal for me, but as Jack Nicholson said, “maybe this is as good as it gets.” I just got to either live with it or try to move to a more conservative state. But where is that?

  3. LINDA says:

    My husband just chills out, and sums it all up this way. The political parties are just two or more groups of people fighting over control over who is going to spend the taxpayers’ money. He tells me go to any town, and you will find the same thing, which is phony politicians fighting for the right to spend tax dollars. I should be putting in overtime at my work, and earning more bucks, instead of worrying about what fox to put in charge of the hen house.

  4. atlantaman says:

    Yes the flaggers are quite a formidable group. They did such a great job of blocking Tom Price and Phil Gingrey from getting elected to Congress, especially in Cobb County where they are the strongest.

  5. UGAMatthew says:

    Linda,
    I fundamentally disagree with most of what you’ve submitted.
    First off, while I’ll entertain the possibility of the flaggers still being sore about the issue, I challenge you to prove they’re in the 10’s of thousands. I just don’t see it.

    Next, they may protest the election, but there’s no way they’ll vote for Taylor.

    Georgia did not elect and re-elect Bush soley based on Iraq as you put forth.
    Ask any other state in the union if GA’s a conservative or liberal state. Assume that as a rhetorical question.

  6. rugby_fan says:

    there will always, *ALWAYS* be people upset with the flag in Georgia. African Americans will not stand for a confederate flag, flaggers will not accept anything. No matter what.

    Flaggers will be lucky to amount to a hill of beans.

  7. LINDA says:

    Dear UGAMatthew,

    You see, I see a very real threat with the fact that McBerry pulled 12% of the vote or nearly 40,000 votes. I am using the theory of numbers that you can mulitiply that number by 8 of the amount of people that will turn on Perdue that voted in the Democrat Primary for Cathy Cox that are flagges. They will either vote for Taylor in November or stay home and not vote at all. You will have more people, of course, that will vote like the flaggers did in November that did not vote in the Primary. The fact that the Democrats pulled more voters in the Primary is a very troubling sign for the GA GOP.

    The Democrats will pull on average 5 times more voters in November than they did in the Primary per my analysis that I did in 2004 here in Bibb County. The GOP seems to be better at turning out voters in a Primary, so their multiplier effect in the General will not be as great as Democrats. If the Democrats pull ten times as many voters, the Republicans will pull less than that amount. The GA GOP has quite a battle on its hands. We have way more Democrats in Georgia in 2006, than we had in 2002!

  8. LINDA says:

    I don’t care whether or not the Blacks would stand for the Confederate Flag. The 1956 flag should have been on the ballot, and it should have been decided on by a majority vote. It could have been settled with a vote, plain and simple.

    Take a look at Lebanon today, at the ethnic cleansing of innocent people. That is exacltly what you are witnessing, which is a mirror image of the union that came in and destroyed the South here in our country. Homes burnt to the grown, Atlanta burned to hell and people driven from their homes. But there is a history in Georgia, which is the Confederacy. I am not like the typical transplant in Georgia. I am a Hoosier that respects the history of this state, and I have symppathy for those that want their heritage honored. We are a Republic for those of you that don’t understand that, put down your brewskies for a little while and actually study American history. Our Republic has been destroyed for people that have the mentality that everyone has rights as groups, instead of the right of the individual. So, we have a Democracy where mob rule is the law. Thus if a voting bloc wants the Confederate Flag in Georgia, it should be that way until another group gains the strenght in numbers to vote it out!

  9. LINDA says:

    You have to absolutely understand something that many of you do not seem to get. My husband worked in a factory with 2500 hundred people, many of them guys that wear CSA belt buckles that vote Democrat or do not bother to vote at all! The flaggers put Sonny in office, and you can take that fact to the bank. You may want to thing that the “social conservatives’ put Sonny in office, but you are dead wrong. The same ones that put him in office can help put him out of office. Am I scared of Mark Taylor being elected governor? You bet I am! But the flag issue should have been the first thing that the Governor lived up to for the promise that he made, and other Republicans made the same promise!

    Do you really think that the people out of work here in Middle Georgia that worked at B&W and Keebler, and those at Ford and Deltal in Atlanta are going to vote for Governor Perdue this November? I wish that Governor Perdue had kept his promise, but he didn’t and now all we can do is pray that we do not go back to the more liberal choice.

  10. JasonW says:

    While Sonny didn’t put the flag on the ballot, lets not forget that Mark Taylor supported actually changing the flag. It seems kind of hypocritical to me, that the flaggers would support Taylor over Perdue, who on pretty much every OTHER issue, would be their man.

  11. kspencer says:

    Linda, a flaw and a comment.

    The flaw is in the comment where you said the Republicans have better primary turnout. I’ve posted this in another comment, let me repeat it here. There were more D voters than R in this primary just past. If the D are ‘better at turnout’, the R have a problem.

    The comment is that I agree with you that the R should worry about the flaggers. No, I don’t think the flaggers will vote for MT. They’ll vote for a third party, or they’ll not vote, or something rather than voting for Sonny.

    Dunno about the “times 8” bit. But given how close some elections past have been, 40,000 votes is nothing to ignore.

  12. Chris says:

    Whoa, you think it’s Perdue’s fault that B&W, Keebler, Delta and Ford and others have so many financial problems they’re closing down their plants? How exactly is that Perdue’s fault? Those closings are the results of shortsigted corporate planning and poor business decisions and have absolutely nothing to do with Perdue and his policies.

  13. atlantaman says:

    The biggest mistake you make is you are assuming all 40,000 people who voted against Sonny are flaggers and for that matter have an inkling of who Ray McBerry even is. On their best protest days I’ve seen 10 people show up and most days they come to protest a candidate, the flaggers have no more then 3 people show up.

    I’d like to know which candidates, State Reps, Senators, Congressman, etc.. that the flaggers have protested and fought against, actually were thrown out of office. There are plenty of examples of folks who brushed the flaggers off like gnats and kept their position or even went on to higher office like Price and Gingrey.

  14. atlantaman says:

    Good point Chris, I’m not sure if McBerry’s conservative platform included government handout programs to incentivize businesses to stay in Georgia.

  15. LINDA says:

    Well Atlantaman,

    Did you ever stop to think that most of the flaggers actually work for a living? That may be why you do not see them at protests. The bottom line is that Brown and Williamson ask for tax breaks to help them out, since the lawsuits against big tobacco companies were hurting their proits. Brown and Wiliamson put over $400 million into our economy with the ripple effect, and they were a company that should have been retained. The first thing the Governor did was to raise tobacco taxes, and the legislature voted to ban public smoking in restaraunts. When we visited TN recently, the restaurants had separate smoking areas because they are a state that depends upon tourism.

    Like it or not, people out of work vote with their pocket books. Just because some of you perceive that all in this state are doing as well as you are, you are not seeing things as they really are. Those that voted for McBerry will vote for Taylor or Libertarian, and those that have lost jobs and feel slighted in this changing global economy will vote for Taylor.

  16. LINDA says:

    Dear Kspencer,

    That is what I was trying to convey that Republicans generally turn out more people in the Primary, and with the Democrats turning out more is very troubling. I am on the same page that you are, although I was not clear enough. With the amount of money spent by Cagle and Reed, the Republicans should have turned out way more voters.

  17. LINDA says:

    You know I heard that Brown and Williamson spent $8 million per year on water here in Bibb County! Now what do you think their closure has done to our economy. The kaolin mines supplied chalk used to produce cigarette paper: box making companies are now not being utilized: a locksmith company that was retained to unlock lockers and change locks all of the tiem is no longer needed; Carter Mechanical that employeed many workers as a subcontractor that earned $100,000 per year are out of work; plumbers that worked in the plant are out of work; electricians that worked as subcontractors are out of work; S&S Cafeteria that fed the workers with a cafeteria at the plant are out of work. And the list goes on and on.

    People that earn on aveage $60,000 per year at B&W, where at one time 3200 worked put real money into an economy. And such companies do not need handouts, but they darn sure needed tax breaks to stay here! Atlantaman, you need to go back and take some more Economic classes!

  18. LINDA says:

    And this $500 million plus surplus in Georgia would only pay for the cost of the war in Iraq for two days! Or put another way, less than $60 per Citizen in Georgia. This is a joke for the Governor to brag about a surplus that would not pay for a hurricane disaster on the coast, and it is likewise a joke for Taylor to say it would go anywhere with education! The real sad fact is that we are not moving forward in this state, and I do not buy into the financial studies showing that we are one of the most fiscally conservative states. I do not trust any bought reports because I know that bought reports are biased.

  19. Chris says:

    $8 million/year in water usage alone?! Man, just think how much more severe our drought would be if they were still using all that water. That ripple effect is the same with any large corporation, and the fact that corporations move around, close down plants and relocate is the nature of business. Those nasty old lawsuits just nibbled away at their profits, and we’re supposed to shore up their wealth with tax subsidies? Those impoverished executives decided to take their marbles and go elsewhere, and that’s how it works. Who do you think was/is paying those higher tobacco taxes? Certainly not B&W.. their customers, the poor people who give every penny they got to this vibrant economy, that’s who. And you ain’t seen nothing yet in Middle Georgia. Just wait till all these wars die down. Remember the huge aerospace corridor built up along 247 between Macon and Warner Robins about 20 years ago, and how it vanished overnight? Expect the same kind of corporate shift the minute they start talking about these current wars actually achieving their goals.

  20. Chris says:

    Well Linda, when Perdue says we got a half billion dollar surplus, I start thinking when do we get some of our money back. Do you think “moving forward in this state” means building up more of a surplus than that, continuing to tax our citizens over and above what they actually need and spend? Ummm, youngen you need a refresher on conservative principles.

  21. cagle2006 says:

    Jobs leaving is corporate greed. it’s called outsourcing. Those jobs are going over to slave wage markets like China and Centeral America where people only get $0.50 per hour and work under the most hazardous conditions that were outlawed in the US under Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson and FDR. It is not the nature of business. it under the nature of our trade policies,handouts to major corporations at taxpayer’s expense and pandering to corporate lobbyists in Washington, DC has basically given multi- national corporations the idea their immune to any law or soverign nation.

  22. Chris says:

    And they’re shooting themselves in the foot for shortterm financial gain. They’ve run out of ways to cut costs by going to the world’s cheapest labor pool from the world’s most expensive labor pool. That means the only other ways to continue reporting profits is to take trim down a couple million in executive paycuts. Then when that doesn’t work they just go under, go bankcrupt, get a government bailout, or get bought out at a tax-deductible loss to the acquiring corporation, and be reabsorbed into the corporate shenanigans environment.

  23. atlantaman says:

    Guess what, I work for a living also and don’t see many of them at the after work or weekend events. You ignore my main question which is, “Point to a specific incumbent that the flaggers were unhappy with (and there are many of them), that they were able to throw out of office.” Gingrey and Price (both candidates in Cobb county where the flaggers are strongest) actually moved up to higher office with the flagger force working against them.

    I used to do business with B&W and that closing has everything to do with the merger with RJR and nothing to do with Sonny Perdue. It’s a real shame those folks lost their jobs, but to try and pin it on the Governor is absurd.

    Sometimes it’s the reality of the marketplace and there is not a whole lot government can do about it. I’m always amazed at the so-called “conservatives” who want to blame government for the unfortunate events that occur in their lives. As I said before, I have sympathy for those that have lost their jobs but their anger needs to be directed at Adam Smith not Sonny Perdue.

  24. Chris says:

    Wait wait wait is she saying what I think she’s saying?

    People that earn on aveage $60,000 per year at B&W, where at one time 3200 worked put real money into an economy.

    People making $60k for pushing a bascart full of tobacco around an air conditioned warehouse all day – GOOD.

    Unions – GOOD.

    Is that what she’s really saying?

    Personally I’m surprised B&W lasted this long.

  25. atlantaman says:

    Cagle2006-

    It’s not corporate greed it’s consumer greed. It’s the American consumer and his never-ending quest to get the most for his money. The corporations don’t get to pocket those profits, they have to pass the savings on to the consumer or end-up road-kill on the marketplace highway.

    New Balance is a great example: for the longest time they exclusively made their shoes in America. Now they outsource a good bit of their shoes. Because of their corporate greed – No. Because consumers would not pay extra for their low-end shoes and the company would have gone out of business.

  26. cagle2006 says:

    atlantaman,
    i wasn’t born in Atlanta. hint: I was born in the land of 10,000 lakes, around the Twin Cities. Let’s forget about corporations for a minute. we need to get down to business. I have created a 2 senario lieutenant governor race poll. one Casey Cagle vs Jim Martin or Casey Cagle vs Greg Hecht. please visit http://FreeOnlineSurveys.com/rendersurvey.asp?sid=jbhfh76qw7jvytl209499, or if link does not appear highlighted, just paste url into address, then click

  27. Maurice Atkinson says:

    The reason Dems have more primary voters is quite simple. There are more contested Dem primaries than Republicans. We, as a Party, are still minority as it pertains to population. We are obviously trending Republican. Our problem is there are not enough Republicans seeking locally elected office. We cannot sustain a solid majority for long if we do not ante up and involve ourselves locally.

    Until this happens the flaggers, regardless whether we feel they are relevant or not, should be considered.

    I do, however, have confidence in our elected leadership. We are fortunate to have several visionaries, but we still need to do a better job locally. This will happen with time, but there needs to be a concerted effort to recruit or encourage individuals to run for public office.

  28. debbie0040 says:

    The GOP had more primary voters in 2004 than the Democrats did. A lot of the GOP voters sat at home. That is disturbing…

  29. LINDA says:

    Dear Chris,

    You know people like you show your stupidity in the United States in not understnading what you define as a living wage for people that work very hard in a tobacco company. I don’t know what you do for a living, but whatever you are doing I think that you are overpaid with your mentality level. For instance, one can walk into a closing attroney’s paper mill office where the people getting the mortgage loan have done all of the leg work in getting the documents together and canned programs are used to spit out loan documents to sign. Paperwork is shuffled around the table in 30 minutes are less, the loan is closed and the attorney can do eight or more a day and make more than $350 a pop! This is not counting kickbacks from title insurance companies and other work.

    But then, you had workers at B&W that stood on their feet for 12 hours a day earning $28 per hour average operating multi-million dollar machinery that you would no doubt stand and look at with your thumb up your ass, and not know the first thing about operating. These employees were the cheapest asset the company had, and if they ran the machines efficiently made multi-millions in profits. But that is ok, allow your stupidity to be the norm of college educated idiots, and destroy what built this country!

  30. LINDA says:

    Chris,

    My husband worked at B&W for 32 years, and believe me he earned every dime he made. Batus that owned B&W was in the top ten on the Fortune 500 companies. People like you will continue to destroy this state. You know you are also a dime a dozen. I have college educated people send me resumes wanting to learn and grow in my CPA office, wanting to start at $40,000 per year. I laugh and put the resumes in a file folder!

  31. LINDA says:

    And Chris, do you have any idea how many little sweat shop companies will have to make up for the good jobs that have been lost? Who is going to pay for this massive welfare state that we have in Georgia, where we depend upon Federal grants to even build a library? Corporations in the United States that were faced with afirmative action quotas to meet, regualations that do not seem to end, bureacratic regulations in local governments, lawsuits without merit, health care costs through the roof and incompetent government officials that tax them out of existence have made corporations move out of this Ccountry!

    And I bet you are one of those people that drive little rice burners, too. Thinking that you are saving all of this fuel efficiency. And then when you need brakes redone or a transmission rebuilt, it cost twice as much as a GM or Ford vehicle. Oh, I hate to think my tax dollars go to fund your education in publicly funded colleges. Because, the money is wasted on thick-numb skulls!

  32. LINDA says:

    And Maurice,

    The only vision smart people have in Bibb County is moving out as soon as they can! Visionary people are not going to run for office here. The people that live here do not even realize that a SPLOST increase created inflation and harms the poor and small businesses. Look at Bibb County, since all of you visionaries pushed for more taxes and count the number of businsesses that have closed down!

  33. LINDA says:

    You remember when I told you that property was being revalued and was going to be sky high? huh huh Maurice, you remember when I talked the talk that is happening today????? I think 18,000 appeals speaks for itself, don’t you? Or do you have selective memory?

  34. LINDA says:

    Oh but the criminals have a nice air conditioned jail to sleep in at night! We have our priorities wrong! We could have put up tents like the smart sheriff does in Arizona with barbed wire fence around it. The prisoners could be wearing pink underwear and cutting grass in this County. Jail should be the last place someone wants to visit. The good ole SPLOSTS lines the pockets of the well connected, and to hell with the small businesses is the new GOP motto!

  35. LINDA says:

    And the reason that Dems have more Primary voters is because there are more Democrats in Georgia than there are Republicans. Since 2004, the Democrats have increased their voter base. All you have to do is look at the increases in spending in public schools and medicaid and foster care and on and on. These recipients are not Republicans. How many Katrina people do you think moved to Atlanta? And they will vote in Louisianna and Georgia. LOL! Sad isn’t it, and it is only going to get worse in Georgia. You see my vision is reality, and my glasses help me to see 20/20, and I realize that minorities will soon take over this state. And they do not vote GOP. All I see is being taxed out of existence to the point that my vision will lead me to move to another state.

  36. MorganCoGOP says:

    To assume that the 40,000 votes McBerry got were all flaggers is absurd. I know people who are Republicans who are not totally happy with Sonny, and voted for McBerry. These same people will support Sonny in the fall because they don’t want MT in office, but in the Primary they knew that there vote against Sonny would not hurt anything. But to assume that just because these people voted against Sonny are flaggers is ridiculous. I’m sure there were many people like this all over the state. Out of the 40,000 votes that Ray got then I put the flagger vote at a very small percentage of that number.

  37. I used to be Cagle2006. Now i am offically Taylor/Cagle2006. It is a bi-partisan effort to better government i might add. Mark Taylor for Governor and Casey Cagle for Lieutenant Governor. Mark Taylor and Casey Cagle both eliminated the sales tax on Groceries which is the largest tax cut in Georgia history. Both Mark Taylor and Casey Cagle passed 2 strikes your out the toughest law in the nation for violent criminals. For lower taxes and less crime you need Mark Taylor for Governor and Casey Cagle for Lieutenant Governor. This would be a good bi-partisan leadership.

  38. Brian from Ellijay says:

    Also Maurice,

    Middle and South Georgians have to vote in the Democratic primary if they want to have a say on their Sheriffs, Commissioners, or any other local offices. This should account for some of the higher numbers on the D side.

    Those same folks BTW usually vote R nationally and now statewide also.

    Of course Maurice, Bibb was the exception in 2004. Not sure about this cycle.

  39. kspencer says:

    Brain, MorganCoGOP, you keep telling yourselves that. I mean, both statements are true, but if you want to sit back and assume they’re all of it, I’ll let you. Me, I’ll just look at the numbers and have my doubts. After all, in 2002 and 2004 there were more R primary voters than D. This year, it’s the D that had the larger primary turnout.

    Kirk

  40. Brian from Ellijay says:

    Kirk,

    I personally know quite a few people who did a protest vote against Sonny and his team. But to say that they, even those sympathetic to the flag cause, would support Taylor is absurd.

  41. LINDA says:

    Dear Brian,

    I want you to give me ten issues concerning budgeting and spending, and tell me where Governor Perdue differs from Mark Taylor. In that analysis, I want to know what government programs have been abolished in the last four years, and how many workers have been removed from the state payroll. Tell me where Perdue is more fiscally conservative, and tell me just what the difference is now that Sonny has a R before his name instead of a D? Tell me how your life is better now that Sonny is a Republican, and how it has helped our state.

    You see, I have set you up with a test that you cannot pass. I do not want social issues discussed here, I want dollar issues discussed.

  42. LINDA says:

    I gave a protest vote for McBerry, as did my husband. Depending upon what comes out in the next few months, I may change my mind and vote Libertarian this November. That is why when I got a phone call last week to work on Sonny’s campaign that I declined. I am not sure that my vote will go to him, as he has disappointed me with his leadership. I am not happy with Sonny Perdue, and I hate not having a choice in an election for the head of our state. Sonny rides the fence post like President Bush is now doing. The GOP had a chance to really turn our Country around, and they have failed miserably. Now, all we have is more people than ever working for the government and a middle income class disappearing.

  43. LINDA says:

    I know some of you would probably like to throw your computer at me. But you know in 1975, I was young and dumb and thought that my father-in-law that fought in the Battle of the Bulge knew less than me about politics and life in general. I also thought my Grandpa that lived through the Depression was an old person that was just not hip like me and my friends. I know that you cannot relate to me or my words. I could teach you more if you hung around me at my business for a year than you could learn in four years of college. But you will be like my generation was, and discount the words from the wise and the Country wil be worse off thirty more years from now. That is history, that is life, and we live and learn from our mistakes.

  44. LINDA says:

    Yes, Jeff, sadly that is what I believe. Look at Europe and how the countries have evolved with their now fragile economies. We are now a debtor nation living on borrowed time. I see another civil war in the future, and another crash in the stock market. History repeats itself, but unfortunately too few of us bother to study history. I pray that you and your generation can change things, but in all actuality my generation is to blame for spoiling our children and worrying about getting instead of making a real difference.

  45. Chris says:

    Wow Linda. Where to start. You sound like a liberal, demanding living wages for people and decent pay for skilled labor, criticizing the country’s astronomical health care costs, decrying the decline of the middle class, demanding we generate more tax revenue to pay for our “massive” welfare state, and even indirectly supporting the very thing that caused so many companies across the nation to relocate to cheaper fields: Successful Unions.

    You’ll notice I’m sure that the companies you complained about closing down: Delta, Ford, Keebler, B&W, all had one thing in common – very strong unions. But when you look at the single largest employer in this state, and all the successful businesses that exist to support its operations, you’re hard pressed to find very much union activity anywhere: Robins Air Force Base. Salaries and benefits throughout that sector rival anything you see at Delta/Ford/B&W, except they all do it without unions, it’s all financed by the taxpayer, every last bit of it.

    You asked how many sweatshops will it take to fill the void left by those private companies, it would depend entirely on whether they’re government contractors or union shops or not. Because all others pay shit for wages and very few benefits. So you have several choices: Bring in more Walmarts and Waffle Houses (free-market solution), support tax-funded government handouts in the form of privatized services outsourced to contractors, or support labor organizing to force the free market to pay higher wages without taxpayer subsidies.

    For the record I support higher wages too, but not in the form of government-mandated minimum wages. The middle class is leveraged to the hilt, borrowing and buying, dumping their money into the economy and keeping it growing strong like all the news reports will tell you. And the economy is booming, except the people, the masses doing their part to keep pumping borrowed money into it are getting nothing but bills in return. They see on the news how all these executives got millions in raises and bonuses for the growth of their companies, and how our politicians voted themselves another multi-thousand dollar payraise, and they keep thinking “my raise is coming too so I can pay down more of my debt, put more money still back into the economy and build a nice little nest egg for myself and my family.” But their raises never come. What do you think the solution is to this dilemma?

    About the only declaration you’ve made that I’m embarrassed to admit I wholeheartedly agree with is your intentions to vote libertarian in the general. And regarding what I do for a living, I’m a self-employed engineering consultant who at one time decades ago helped design and install some of that multi-million dollar equipment out at B&W. I also had relatives who were employed at B&W, who made better than $50/hour with massive overtime, pushing a damn tobacco cart around in an airconditioned warehouse.

  46. LINDA says:

    Well Chris, did you know that there are unions at Warner Robins Air Force Base? it sounds like you are just bitter because you did not get a union job at B&W. You are wrong though if you think that the majority did not earn every dime and more that they were paid. What do you want in society, and empty vacuum? Have you driven in North Carolina and seen all of the mills closed down? Do you think that we are going to keep on keeping on here? No, we are in for a collapse.

    My father was a union truck driver, and I know how hard he worked. As I said before, my husband was a union worker at B&W for 32 years. Other than taking his vacation days, my husband did not miss more than a couple of days per year sick. He and other workders could be counted on to make the company a profit. Unions built this country and union wages pay taxes into economies that built the roads, bridges, schools and contributed much to local economies. I cannot relate to your way of thinking other than thinking that you are bitter because you did not get the same chance in life that those that are retired from B&W got.

    Where good paying jobs have been lost have created a vacuum in our society that is going to cause a collapse. Just mark my word because you have been fore warned.

  47. LINDA says:

    Are you telling me, Chris, that the base is efficient with tax dollars? If there are no private companies, where will tax money generate from? When I took economic classes, I was taught that governent adds little to GDP. Why do you think that people are leveraged to the hilt? Could it be because of governments that have over taxed the people? And then when the money is paid back, it is paid with dollars that are worth less because of inflation.

    You need to do a study of Henry Ford and find out how he paid his workers, and how he wanted to produce a vehicle everyone could afford to drive. When workers are paid well, they produce more. When I hire people to work for me, I not only pay them the agreed upon wage but I also pay bonuses because I could not make it without them. If I go through McDonald’s drive through, many times I give the worker at the window a couple of dollars and tell them to use it for gas. I know that those on the bottom are having it hard. Tax dollars is the most inefficient means of paying people because it becomes corrupt like that which we have today!

  48. John Konop says:

    Linda,

    You are right !!!

    This is the latest sell-out vote by congress.

    Trading on terror to profit a few

    The U.S.-Oman Free Trade Agreement deserves greater scrutiny as it makes its way in Congress under the radar.
    By Antonia Juhasz, Antonia Juhasz is the author of “The Bush Agenda: Invading the World, One Economy at a Time” (ReganBooks 2006 (TheBushAgenda.net) and a visiting scholar with the Institute for Policy Studies.
    June 26, 2006

    EVEN AS Congress has finally begun a serious debate about whether U.S. troops should be withdrawn from Iraq, another part of President Bush’s “war on terror” is advancing with far less public fanfare. Last month, the Senate Finance Committee approved the implementation of the U.S.-Oman Free Trade Agreement and cleared the way for its consideration by Congress.

    The agreement is part of the president’s dual strategy for fighting the war on terror: direct military engagement and free trade. Then-U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick first announced the policy on Sept. 20, 2001, saying that the administration would be “countering terror with trade.”

    ADVERTISEMENT
    Bush reiterated the pledge four years later when he told the United Nations that “by expanding trade, we spread hope and opportunity to the corners of the world, and we strike a blow against the terrorists. Our agenda for freer trade is part of our agenda for a freer world.”

    In the years that followed, the war in Iraq — and the administration’s stated reasons for launching it — have been widely challenged, but the president’s free trade agenda has received far less scrutiny.

    Just two months after invading Iraq, Bush announced his plan for a U.S.-Middle East Free Trade Area, which he said would include 20 countries from western Africa to the Persian Gulf. To make it happen, he established a unique negotiating platform involving a series of bilateral negotiations between the U.S. and each of the individual countries.

    If all goes according to plan, the individual free trade agreements will be united under the U.S.-Middle East Free Trade Area by 2013. Negotiations have progressed rapidly as nations throughout the region seek to prove they’re with the United States, not against it.

    Oman’s accord would be the fifth free trade agreement between the U.S. and a Middle Eastern country, and the fourth implemented by Bush.

    Oman is a relatively small country (just slightly smaller than Kansas) at the southeast end of the Arabian Peninsula between the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. An absolute monarchy, Oman has been governed by Sultan Qaboos bin Said al-Said since 1970. Although its reserves are modest, oil accounts for 75% of the nation’s export earnings and the vast majority of all U.S. imports from Oman (which, in total, were just $422 million in 2004). Apparel is the only other major import product. U.S. oil, energy and apparel companies, in turn, are likely to be the only major U.S. beneficiaries of the agreement.

    It should not be surprising, therefore, that the U.S. corporate lobbying group pushing for the MEFTA (the aptly named U.S.-Middle East Free Trade Coalition) includes among its 120 members Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Bechtel and Halliburton — companies intimately connected to the Bush administration that have been big winners in the war on terror. Their “winnings,” however, have not translated into greater oil security for the U.S., lower prices at the pump for U.S. consumers or lower rates of terrorism.

    The Oman free trade agreement provides these companies with expansive new rights and greatly increased access to Oman’s economy, a template they hope will spread from agreement to agreement across the Middle East.

    For instance, Oman will give U.S. firms substantially greater access to its service sector, likely including energy, which is largely nationalized. The Omani government also is restricted under the agreement from giving preference to local over foreign companies in virtually all circumstances, including in its energy sector.

    On Jan. 19, then-U.S. Trade Representative Robert Portman sent a letter to Oman’s minister of commerce and industry. He affirmed that, when it signs contracts, the Omani government may not give preference to Omantel (the nation’s second-largest employer after the government), Petroleum Development Oman or Oman Liquefied Natural Gas — that is, to the primary Omani exploration and production companies largely owned by the government of Oman.

    Thus, U.S. firms will receive significantly greater access to Oman’s oil profits without any clear benefits for Oman’s economy.

    As for Oman’s apparel industry, the U.S. International Trade Commission estimates that the U.S.-Oman agreement will lead to a 66% increase in U.S. imports of apparel manufactured in Oman.

    What are the likely effects? A report in May by the National Labor Committee, a not-for-profit research organization, exposed the costs of the first Middle East trade agreement signed by Bush in December 2001 — the U.S.-Jordan Free Trade Agreement. After that agreement was implemented, new factories arrived in Jordan to service American companies primarily from the apparel industry, including Wal-Mart, JC Penney, Target and Jones New York.

    The factories have engaged in the worst kinds of human rights and worker abuses, including 48-hour shifts without sleep, violent physical and psychological abuse and workers brought from foreign countries with their passports held by employers, often receiving no pay for their work. Wal-Mart also is a member of the U.S.-Middle East Free Trade Coalition.

    American companies seeking cheap, easy labor are not likely to meet much opposition from the Omani government. The State Department has reported Oman for human trafficking and forced labor abuses. Eighty-five percent of the private-sector workforce in Oman is made up of foreign “guest workers” who are granted limited rights. And the U.S.-Oman Free Trade Agreement does not even include the meager labor standards of the Jordan agreement.

    At a moment when people across the Middle East reveal in poll after poll a deep distrust of the United States, and particularly of its actions in the region, it seems ill-advised to advance trade agreements that provide clear rewards to a handful of U.S. corporations but few discernible benefits to either the people of the Middle East or the people of the United States.

  49. Chris says:

    Unions are good, and about the best way to resolve income disparities, but they have consequences as seen in the mass exodus of the nation’s manufacturing base to cheaper countries.

    In terms of efficient tax-based economies, Middle Georgia would be a dustbowl without RAFB. I personally think alot of that funding is pork that should be cut from the budget, because I’m a firm believer in free-market capitalism provided all sides have ample leverage to deal with each other. Middle Georgia’s economy is NOT based on free-market principles, it’s all dependent on government largesse pumped into RAFB.

    Free market principles would definitely grow more jobs, and contribute to our economy, if current regulations were scrapped to allow open, unfettered competition across all industries, giving way to the successful introduction of exciting new technologies that could help restore both our middle class and our excellence in science and technology. But the system we have now does nothing to encourage free market activities because regulations currently in place only protect the monopolies that control the industries.

    We could indeed become a self-sustaining economy (far from what we are at this moment), based on free market capitalism where hard work and innovation is rewarded rather than penalized as it is now with our corporatist government. Look all across the country at the new technologies being announced daily, and look at how most of them languish with inaction because somebody’s waiting for the government to either fund their endeavor with taxpayer dollars, or write a law to protect their venture from competition.

    I think both of us want the exact same thing, and have many of the same beliefs, but we’re talking past each other based on erroneous perceptions about our intentions. I believe unions are good, and are the best way to force companies to pay decent wages for hard work. I don’t believe the government should fund any or all of an entire economy such as it is in middle Georgia, and I don’t think the government (funds or legisaltion) should be used to prop up businesses that can’t succeed on their own in a truly competitive environment. They need to get their hands off of business entirely and let the free market, with all its benefits or consequences, do what it can do.

  50. atlantaman says:

    It seems absurd to claim you’re a Libertarian and then complain that Sonny Perdue and the State of GA have not done enough to keep the high paying union jobs here in Georgia.

  51. John Konop says:

    Chris,

    Where do you set the bar with labor ? I guess you are ok with slave labor and human trafficing ? Since you are ok with slave labor overseas do we bring it back here ? By the way ,Jordan MM wage is 2 cents an hour. You guys all beat up Reed for being a lobbyist for this type of policy,yet guys like Tom Price voted for it.

  52. LINDA says:

    Sonny Perdue was in the legislature when the states were bringing lawsuits against big tobacco. Why did the legislature not do like North Carolina and not participate in the lawsuits. The first thing Sonny did was to push for more taxes on cigarettes when he got in office, just like he would have done had he still been a Democrat. If you think that raising taxes on cigarettes is a good thing, then you are not to bright. Atlantaman. Oh, but Sonny will help bring in Japanese companies and help insiders make money flipping the land and promise teachers more pay to get the teachers to vote for him. But to hell with a company that was the third largest employer in the state. Yeah, let them move to North Carolina and then work with Tom Reynolds from New York in getting Bass Pro Shops in Bibb County without investing a dime of their own money.

    Yeah Sonny is the fisherman’s choice, the fishermen of wealth. LOL

  53. LINDA says:

    Why don’t you do a little research of the scam of Bass Pro Shops where I believe nearly 20 are being built across the U.S? You know the founders are some of Bush’s buddies from Texas. Atlantaman, you have a lot to learn.

  54. LINDA says:

    Let me give you a little help: Bass Pro Shops in Buffalo, NY; Bass Pro Shops in Arizona; Bass Pro Shops in Tennessee; Bass Pro Shops in Bibb County, GA: Bass Pro Shops near Fort Walton Beach, FL.; Bass Pro Shops in Louisianna for starters. Research, the players in the ponzi scheme and the lawsuits filed by taxpayers in some of the states where residents actually have brains enough to complain about what their government does behind closed doors.

  55. John Konop says:

    atlantaman,

    The father of free-enterprise Adam Smith warned monoplies destroy the system. The system is based on the capital being concentrated with small business not big business.This is why true conservative like Ron Paul do back our current trade deals and tax policy.

    The truth is we have a un-holly alliance between between Democrats wanting open boarders to increase voters and union membership(union dues) at the expence of middle class. We have Republicans who have already sold us out via trade deals and pretend get tough immigration policy giving mega corporation cheap labor ,killing small business.

    That is why the revnue per tax payer is dropping. You do not need a Harvard MBA to get this is a race to the bottom. This is why guys like Warren Buffet are moving money out of our country and gold is doing well.

  56. Chris says:

    John Konop said: Where do you set the bar with labor ? I guess you are ok with slave labor and human trafficing ?

    No I’m not ok with slave labor and human trafficing. Last time I checked none of that was occurring in the United States. Where do I set the bar with labor? With the people themselves. There’s not a damn one of us out here who’ll accept a drop in our wages, so the bar is set at the current level. Giving ample leverage to workers to organize and negotiate in their best interests, I have no reason to believe their demands will be anything less than what they’re currently getting. There’s the bar, and it can only go in one direction: Up.

  57. LINDA says:

    Ten step program after we pick ourselves up from a collapsed Democracy:

    1. term limits in the state legislature of no more than one term
    2. no retirement benefits for politicians or health insurance
    3. term limits in the U.S. Congress and Senate of one term
    4. President can only serve one term
    5. no health care or pensions for U.S. Congress and Senate
    6. cut all federal funding, except for the military (means getting the federal government out of schools and our personal lives)
    7. no political campaign contributions from teachers unions and utility companies.
    8. no political campaign contributions from corporations (no pacs either).
    9. make government completely transparent and no involvement with business development.
    10. no lobbiest allowed to influence legislation

  58. John Konop says:

    Chris,

    We have sweatshops in the U.S. today. If you search on the net you will find it fast.You being a Democrat, you might find this interesting. Ceasar Chavez testified before congress in 1979 that immgration was a tool to drive down wages. The first Minuteman project was run by his brother Manuel and Ceasar.In 1969 MLK successor Ralph Abernathy and Walter Mondale did marches to block the boarders from illegals immigrants.

    Ceasar did not have a MBA but he did understand supply and demand. Henry Ford was asked why do you pay you employees so much, he pointed out that he wanted them to buy his cars. Think about that and then think about your answer.By the way I do not think unions are the anwser.

  59. Chris says:

    I agree that immigration is being used to lower wages for huge financial enterprises, and I agree we need some kind of border enforcement. But I also believe that corporate structure is part of the problem, an entity that acts with impunity recognized and protected by a corrupt government.

  60. Chris says:

    Yes I’m aware of that situation, and think any US territory should have uniform application and enforcement of US laws.

  61. Chris says:

    Henry Ford was asked why do you pay you employees so much, he pointed out that he wanted them to buy his cars. Think about that and then think about your answer.By the way I do not think unions are the anwser.

    How many Henry Fords do we have leading companies today? If I’m not mistaken he was pretty much villified for his position on labor, and the likes of him have not been found elsewhere in this country since (except maybe Ben &Jerry’s, and that didn’t last very long either).

    I agree with Henry Ford’s heart, but I think the power to force such application of moral integrity or economic sense should rest with the people affected, rather than the government.

  62. John Konop says:

    Chris,

    I agree with you.We need to shift corporate welfare to multi-national corporations and instead shift the money to SBA loans to create competition via small business.This will lower prices and create more jobs and increase wages. Example why would Exxon develop anything to help cars get better gas milage.Our latest energy bill gave money to companies like Exxon to solve our energy problem. This is socialism !!!!

  63. John Konop says:

    Chris,

    By having more small businees and less big business this solves the problem via competition.The spread between rich and poor grows with less competition. This is Adam Smith point in his book Wealth of Nations. The problem we have is the lack of enforcement of ANTI- TRUST laws.And lobbyist buying off congress to creatre unfair adavantage over small business.

  64. Chris says:

    Nope I don’t agree with using tax money to “create competition via small business.” I think good ideas stand on their own merits, and private investors can pool their resources to get the ball rolling for marketing new technologies to a public hungry for some diversity.

    Speaking of the energy bill, there were a couple of articles this spring exposing a scam tha congress passed in the dark of night attached to a spending bill that allowed the price of oil to be rolled back to pre-2004 levels in order to maintain govt subsidies for synthetic fuel producers. A whole industry of sham operations claiming to be in the gas-to-liquids or coal-to-liquids industry started lining up for the handouts. Look it up in Time magazine archives, and in National Geographic.

    Meanwhile we have two seemingly industrious companies trying in ernest to get synthetic fuels into the marketplace, with per-barrel production costs ranging from $10-30/barrel, low enough to put the fuel on the retail market at under $1/gallon. However, should the synthetic fuels industry decide to peg their products to industrial petroleum prices (which would be encouraged through legislation), they stand to reap the hugest of windfalls by selling the fuel retail at current gasoline prices.

  65. LINDA says:

    All of this is in the Protocols of Zion that many argue do not exist. The blueprint for our Marxist Totalitarian Government was written long ago.

  66. John Konop says:

    Chris,

    Do you know how SBA works ? Tax payer risk is 10% and the the money, the rest comes from private sector. Also you must have an approved business plan from a bank which is 100% PG from the business owner.No one would borrow 10 million dollars and not use the money to expand.This is much smarter way to spur development than corporate welfare. By the way the rate of bad loans is real low.

    If we had not cheated so long the other way I would agree with you.

  67. John Konop says:

    Chris,
    I think I read they are having problems with getting gas stations to carry the fuels via the contracts with companies like Exxon. Do you know if this is true ?

  68. LINDA says:

    Dear John and Chris,

    Don’t you see that you cannot tame the beast? It is the same thing when a family has exhausted all of their savings, has credit card due, has a mortgage in default after losing their jobs. There is no choice left, but to file bankruptcy. We are getting crushed with debt, and now France which holds much of the debt in Lebanon is going to have to write off debt that the destroyed Democracy will never be able to repay.

    The United States is so close to bankruptcy it is scarry to me. You mentioned SBA loans, and that is fine but then they are full of government traps such as minority businesses getting preferences and this creates fraud. For instance, I had a head of a corporation that came to my office setting up a business with other friends and they were putting it in their wives names to get minority preference. Every place that the government is involved is rife with fraud.

    The bottom line is that it is useless to debate how to change the direction of our Country because we are a train wreck that is taking place right now!

  69. LINDA says:

    Dear John,

    I was not insinuating that you were part of a take over the system person. This global plan was put in place by big money, and there is no one big enough to stop it from ruining the United States. I wondered who you were because I saw Bill Simon debating about Tom Price and his opponent, and I was not in tune to who you are because you are not in my district.

  70. Chris says:

    No I was not aware that SBA loans were only 10% taxpayer risk. I was basing my arguments on your earlier statements: We need to shift corporate welfare to multi-national corporations and instead shift the money to SBA loans to create competition via small business.

    I think the money needs to be removed entirely. Make corporations stand on their own without corporate welfare, and cut that money out of the budget entirely. You said to shift it all from mega corporations to small businesses, which I don’t agree with. However, if 100% of the SBA funding comes from banks and private investment, and only 10% of that is guaranteed by the taxpayers, I don’t have a huge problem with it.

  71. Chris says:

    Re: distributing fuels to the public, I think there are problems in getting biofuels into mainstream distribution channels because of the current infrastructure, but as of yet none of the synfuels have been introduced to the marketplace. I would love to see entirely new fuel stations crop up with a whole compendium of fuels from which the public can choose, at the modest prices resulting from low production costs.

    I do know that synfuels from the gas-to-liquids process are currently being tested in large quantities on military installations, and so far the results are coming back perfect. Governor Schweitzer is pushing hard to help both synfuel companies get into position to put their fuels on the open market. The only way I predict that can happen is with new fuel stations being built in various test communities, bypassing the current petroleum distribution channels altogether. Because I don’t see Exxon or Shell or BP or any other petroleum distributor allowing their retailers to sell synfuels or alternative fuels at $1-2/gallon alongside their $3/gallon product. So the obvious answer is to bypass these existing stations entirely.

  72. LINDA says:

    http://www.heartland.org/Article.cfm?artId=19290

    One of many articles about the scam of Bass Pro Shops! I have been to Myrtle Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Smokey Mountains, TN and these places all had something in common a Bass Pro Shops. Each time, our vacations were at least seven days and I told my husband we need to check out the Bass Pro Shops. But you know, we never found the time. And one of our good friends said that the prices are so high that they could not find anything affordable to buy. But yes siree our bright politicians in Bibb County got us one right here and gave away tax incentives to boot! Psst-Governor Perdue was also involved-come on Taylor camp do you really want an issue with substance to run on? What a joke! How about Libertarians?

  73. Chris says:

    The bottom line is that it is useless to debate how to change the direction of our Country because we are a train wreck that is taking place right now!

    Well then what are we supposed to do, just sit back and wait for it, or go ahead and make the best of what we can while we still can?

  74. LINDA says:

    Chris,

    We should all just party like its 1999 because the ship is sinking! As soon as I can, I am retiring and moving to Tennessee. We are going to get about 4 acres of land and sit back and watch the sun rise and sun set. I won’t know a darn thing about politics there, and I am not going to get involved. I am going to support Tom Tancredo if he runs for President by putting a sign in my yard. And I am going to have an attitude of forget about it!

  75. Chris says:

    I think the simplest solution to all these doomsday predictions is to never re-elect anyone. And every new person vying for the jobs needs to be clean and pristine and untainted by the scandals that so rile your fragile spirits.

  76. LINDA says:

    I would like to see every politician replaced with a NCO that has served in Viet Nam, the Gulf War, Iraq or Afghanistan all the way from the state house to the White House. We could then have real leaders that are like the Marines that say “Lead, follow or get out of the way!” All of the politicians in DC should be stripped of their cushy pensions and health care!

  77. LINDA says:

    I just saw the Governor on the news with a message that Georgia stands and has always stood with Israel. What with a $500 millon surplus in Georgia? That would not pay for more that a handful of precision guided missiles used to do billions of dollars of damage to Lebanon that we will have to help rebuild. WHAT A JOKE! Innocent people are being killed, and we call other countries terrorist countires. i am so sad at what is going on in the world, as our politicians make decisions that go against morality and go against the wishes of the people!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am a born again Christian, and there are only 7% of the Christians that are evangelical born again Christians, and this replacement theology is not what I believe in at all!

  78. LINDA says:

    I wish that people had some sense in the GOP because if they did, they would have voted for McBerry and changed our direction in this state to not being complacent in the destrucition of the Middle East with our Federal government.

  79. BB says:

    If things are so bad Linda / John, hop a plane and get the hell out. Reading both of you would make an outsider think America is the most dreary, failed experiment in goverment the planet has ever known.

    McBerry was a joke candidate just like Konop…neither had a snowball’s chance of winning. Flaggers will have no impact on the coming election just like they had none during the primary or back in ’02. Flaggers, isolationists, etc. are fringe voting blocks occasionally empowered when some guy runs a guerilla campaign.

    BTW John, you never really answered the question before. Now that you got annihilated in the primary, who will you support in November?

  80. LINDA says:

    Well BB, you tell me what in the hell is good with our Country right now? Have you lost a good friend in the hell hole called Iraq? Have you served in the military? Are you willing to send your kids to die for this war on terror? You know, I wish that I did not know what I do know about the state of our economy. I wish it was all as it is supposed to be “United we stand and divided we fall” and that we could all sit around a camp fire and sing kum bay yih my Lord, and trust our politicians. But it is not that way. I do not have to leave this country. I can trace my roots back to 1610! Can you do that?

  81. LINDA says:

    And btw, I have mentioned to my husband moving to Iceland. But he is not as adventorous as I am. But it is only four hours by plane from New York and before long the globalist will ruin that tiny Country too!

  82. LINDA says:

    Why do you think young 18 year olds join the military? It is because they are too young to know what they are getting into. Am I patriotic. You bet your ass I am! Ask anyone that knows me how patriotic I am. But now that I realize that we are intentionally creating civil wars in the Middle East, I am sick to my stomach. You see, I am not the bigot some think that I am. I actually realize that when those big bombs go off that people are dying! Wake up, BB and learn a hell of a lot more than you seem to display before you come knocking on my door. I’ll give you and earful, and leave you packing with your tail tucked between your legs.

  83. Jeff Emanuel says:

    “Why do you think young 18 year olds join the military? It is because they are too young to know what they are getting into. Am I patriotic. You bet your ass I am! Ask anyone that knows me how patriotic I am. But now that I realize that we are intentionally creating civil wars in the Middle East, I am sick to my stomach. You see, I am not the bigot some think that I am. I actually realize that when those big bombs go off that people are dying!”

    That’s the most inane comment I’ve ever read. Thank God people like you have no real control over our military, or our foreign policy. I’m not even going to waste any more time refuting the obvious idiocy of that quote.

  84. John Konop says:

    To understand BB (which is Bart) everyone should read this. My question is do you think a guy who advocates attacking kids should be a vice chairman of the Republican party? He even used this blog to promote attacking kids which I gut numerous calls asking if Bart is crazy.

    James Budd
    GOP snubbing challengers in primary

    July 06, 2006
    I live on a rocky ridge in Cherokee County, and when the sun angle is mirror-perfect on my west-facing windows, these monstrous crows, which perch on a nearby persimmon tree, take turns battering themselves against the “challengers” reflecting in the glass.

    Today’s Republican incumbents and the party infrastructure, at both the local and state levels, appear to have the same mentality as the crazed crows outside my house, battering and clattering at both real and imagined challengers. The clattering has reached a crescendo as the July 18 Republican Primary nears.

    In fact, the state GOP’s executive board has enacted a policy to support incumbents only, according to Sheila Auffrey, corresponding secretary with the Cherokee County Republican Party (CCRP).

    Out here in the frontier of Cherokee, just next door to Milton, the list of GOP hopefuls who couldn’t break into the “in-crowd” form a long, dejected line. More will be added after July 18. Bet on it, Bubba.

    The GOP putsch has been won, so now it’s time to round up dissenters and keep the power among the “pure” original Republicans.

    It’s the same way in Forsyth, where the local party recently called for the resignation of School Superintendent Paula Gault because she was one of 22 state superintendents to criticize Gov. Sonny Perdue in a letter for cutting school funding during his term and lowering maximum class sizes.

    Cherokee’s Superintendent Dr. Frank Petruzielo also signed the letter criticizing the governor, but he’s so ornery, and heavily armed with data, that most politicians cower and wilt when he enters the room.

    Although local party officials such as Auffrey and Chairman Pete Castello deny giving a cold shoulder to GOP challengers, ask practically anyone who has dealt with the local party as a challenger and he will report they felt like the proverbial “skunk at the picnic.”

    First case in point is John Konop, a financial services specialist from Cherokee County, who is challenging North Fulton physician and incumbent Tom Price for Sixth District Congress.

    Konop’s run an energetic campaign against an entrenched incumbent, who has more than $1 million in his campaign war chest. Konop’s been drawing hundreds of supporters at recent forums.

    Konop, an America-first candidate, had no luck getting his campaign announcements on his home county’s GOP Web site. The state party also snubbed him with its incumbents-only policy.

    Bart Brannon, the guy in charge of communications for the Cherokee GOP, brushed Konop off from the get-go.

    The challenger complained bitterly to the local party’s executive board in an e-mail.

    In his e-mail, Konop wrote: “All I am asking for is fair treatment. We all know Bart [Brannon] has refused to book me to speak to the CCRP as a candidate, while offering Tom Price multiple opportunities…”

    Nothing happened at first.

    But, Chairman Castello finally got so tired of the infighting he had all candidate announcements yanked off the Web site a few weeks ago.

    Konop said a faction within the party is so “vicious” that they’ve verbally abused his children at political events.

    “When it sinks to that level, you know it’s over the top,” said Konop. “There’s a very dangerous element that controls everything.”

    Ironically, Brannon was arrested several years back for violating state elections laws when he was a political consultant. He could have faced jail time, but instead was allowed to produce a pamphlet on election laws as part of the terms.

    Another candidate who’s had trouble breaking into the clutches of the local GOP “in crowd” is Mary Whilhite, a former Chicago Bears cheerleader who happens to be an African-American. She ran an unsuccessful campaign two years ago for the District 22 House seat in south Cherokee, losing in a runoff election to Chuck Scheid.

    After taking office, it turns out Scheid, a resident of Woodstock, hadn’t paid his state taxes for several years. He was also cited for numerous ethics violations for filing his campaign financial disclosure reports late.

    A financial adviser, Scheid, 57, claims his records were destroyed in an arson that happened at his home in the midst of his close runoff election with Whilhite. Hmm.

    Scheid, who had the backing of the local GOP two years ago, decided not to seek the District 22 House seat again, probably because news of his tax problems hit the newspapers and the future didn’t look promising.

    Now Scheid’s running for State Labor Commissioner in the GOP Primary against Atlanta businessman Brent Brown. In a recent straw poll in Cobb County, Brown, 35, whipped Scheid by landslide.

    Scheid’s departure left the door open for Whilhite to try again. She’s in a three-way race in the primary and continues to get the cold shoulder from the party elite.

    Whilhite, whose signs were recently sprayed with racial epithets, rolls her eyes when talking about the local GOP. She said most of the leadership tries to be fair, but a “nasty faction” controls the party.

    “The stories I could tell,” said Whilhite.

    There are plenty more stories to tell from the wild Cherokee frontier, but space is limited and the crows are back

  85. John Konop says:

    After Bart made his comments that attacking my kid is ok on this web site.My wife was yelled at with my kids using 4 letter words (12 and 5).Now read about Bart and his partner he was arrested with.

    The Political Vine is the home of political news, satire, rants, and rumors.
    « Open thread….Tom Price Campaign Goes Ballistic! »Cherokee County’s Robert Trim: Kids, Don’t Grow-Up To Be Anything Like Himby Bill Simon

    I know Robert Trim can be a horse’s ass, but I didn’t know he was THIS much of an absolute jerk until his actions at yesterday’s Cobb GOP BBQ for the 4th of July.

    Robert Trim’s best pal in the whole wide world is a guy in Cherokee County named Bart Brannon, whom I refer to as being The Cow Turd With Two Legs. I guess I now have to dub Trim as being something just as respectable as the Cow Turd, so I’ll refer to Trim as being The Dirtbag With Two Legs.

    Ever since John Konop announced his candidacy sometime last year to challenge Tom Price for Congress, Brannon/The Turd has been in a constant battle with Konop, whether by trying to tear him down via e-mail or just blocking his candidacy as much as he could in Cherokee County. I guess The Dirtbag, by virtue of being The Turd’s butt-buddy, sorta glommed onto The Turd’s hatred of Konop and his candidacy.

    Nevermind that John Konop could clean either of these two dipshits’ clocks in brain power and knowledge of the effects of Congressional votes on bills that affect macroeconomics, these two putzes (along with another jackass by the name of Dick Hall in Cherokee County) have made it their life’s work to try and make trouble for Konop and his campaign.

    It’s one thing for The Dirtbag to try and get in Konop-The-Candidate’s face (for whatever screwed-up reason is in Trim’s f*cked-up, moronic head)…it’s quite another when Trim takes his aggression out on Konop’s 12-year-old son.

    Here’s the scenario I know about yesterday’s events, based on talking to John Konop, Konop’s son William, and Robert Trim himself: Konop’s 12-year-old son was handing-out fliers and putting them down on tables in the room full of about 50-60 tables packed with people.

    He came upon a table where several people were seated, eating lunch. Robert Trim was standing at one end. Konop’s son handed-out fliers to the people seated and then (according to The Dirtbag’s side of the story), William “smirked

  86. Chris says:

    I don’t think I’ve seen such a bad case of battered wife syndrome from both Linda and John as I’m seeing here. Why do you both continue to support the very party that’s destroying our country?

  87. John Konop says:

    Chris,

    Both parties are destroying our country. The trade ,personal and national debt is out of control. What has happen is the lobbyist have bought off both sides. The struggle is do I say nothing while I am one of the 5 % who make out ok.

    I am a highly paid expert in turning around failed companies or starting new companies.I do think we can turn this around.The issue is when the bottom falls out. That is when real reform will happen. The question is will come from free – market side ? That is why I am doing my part.

  88. LINDA says:

    Well Jeff,

    Look at the avearage age of those names on the Vietnam Memorial. I am not willing to sacrifice my son’s life for a war that is a LIE!

  89. LINDA says:

    This war in Iraq was all planned in 1996 “A New Strategy for Securing the Realm.” Read it yourself, Jeff, I even have in on my blog. You will see that this war in Iraq had nothing ZILCH to do with 911. When you see your son’s best friend that you loved, too, come back in a coffin then you have a different way of looking at the way politicians get us into wars. If you can’t understand that then you are missing the most basic premisie of what freedom you are supposed to fighting for. Again, I will thank you for your service to our Country. My son is still in a risky military related position, and I cannot convince him otherwise. He has done five years in the Marines, three years in the Reserves and now has undergone smallpox vaccines and some other shots in preparation to maybe go to Bagdad. We are a patriotic family!

  90. LINDA says:

    As a 51 year old educated person, I have learned that their is ZERO difference between the Republican or the Democrat Party. One day, the rest of you young idealogues (sp?) will realize that I was right! And I looked at the Libertarian choice for Governor of Georgia, and that did nothing to give me hopes for change.

  91. LINDA says:

    I know the drill, Jeff! I am the one that saw the billboards in South Macon when my son was a senior in high school where the Marines were looking for young boys to enlist. I took phone call after phone call, and I saw how the Recruiting Sergeant filled my son and his two friend’s head with a line of shit. Oh, you can go to college and all of this other malarchy. Mark did not have time to go to school while he was in the Marines, but your branch of the service is much different!

  92. Demonbeck says:

    I demand that the Governor take me to dinner or the three votes in my household are going elsewhere!

    (Just kidding)

  93. BB says:

    John,

    The Jeep needs a wash loser, I’ll bring the brush and bucket to tonight’s candidate forum. 17.7% – even worse than I predicted. Do you have a portable vaccum?

    BTW, I have never spoken to your kid and to my knowledge he was never “attacked”. But if a candidate running on a platform based solely on attacking his opponent incessantly without cause puts his kids in the campaign as you did, then that candidate should be prepared to have the kid hear disparaging remarks. Before casting aspersion at others regarding your kid John, you should first accept that you are to blame, nobody else.

    My advice would be for you to seek counseling as you obviously are not handling your landslide loss well. You probably convinced yourself that you had a chance then realized at about 8:00 last Tuesday that the fantasy was over. Maybe counseling will help, but I doubt it because you are one seriously wacked individual. Please take Linda’s advice and run as a write-in for governor so Georgians throughout the state can verify what I have been saying since you announced…Republicans don’t vote for doom and gloom!

    Speaking of blame, your lies contributed to James Budd joining the ranks of the unemployed…are you proud of that? It is not often that an editor of a newspaper is so filled with hatred that he completely ignores facts while writing a weekly column, but Budd did and he paid the price. Now he is submitting freebies to N. Fulton Times as if they give a rats ass about Cherokee County politics. Why don’t you hire him to be your press secretary as you prepare to run for county commissioner. He has about as much regard for the truth as you, so it will be a perfect match. Bonus: you can send Budd to do your dirty work and leave the kids at home so they are not faced with evil citizens who despise lying candidates who have no message other than personal attacks against an opponent and his/her supporters.

    BTW, who will you support in November for the 6th district…you didn’t answer the question again. FYI, the Cherokee Democrats meet once a month (www.cherokeedems.com) and are surely more receptive to your Chicken Little, doom and gloom message. I know a few people who will gladly pay your membership fee.

    Bart

  94. LINDA says:

    Dear Bart,

    You are part of the problem with the Republican Party instead of the solution. I think you are being a smart ass to John, but I am not surprised! You elitist snobs are ruining this Country, and if the Democrats were in power you would be a Democrat. I have your number, and I know your kind. Vultures!

  95. John Konop says:

    In fairness the first Iraq war we shocked to find out how much they had in WMD.
    After 911 ,knowing what happen in the first war it is hard not to assume the worse.

    In hind sight we should had a better post war plan and had stronger world wide support. The real issue is what do we do now ?

    The spitting of the oil money fairly between all three parties is key.And we most become free from needing Middle East oil.

  96. LINDA says:

    Well where do you think they got the WMD from? From us and our allies. We have created the terrorist in an effort to prevent a new empire forming like the Ottaman Empire. Our Country must have wars to survive, but as you said earler the bucket is about to fall out from under us.

    Wars are blood money for greedy contractors, and it keeps us printing money and so far we have someone to fund our debt. Doesn’t China now own more than 40% of our debt, now? Think of that a Godless Communist Country is holding the debt of the most Democratic Country in the World. It makes me sad that college graduates are not learning a darn thing about the United States and gloss over the Federal Reserve in Finance Class with no doubt a hangover!

  97. John Konop says:

    BB,

    Point out the lie.

    Did you not get arrested and cut a deal ?

    Did you not support attacking my kids ?

    Did you go after a black Republican for getting tough on illegal immigration ?

    Did not the local police department even question why you are the Vice Chairman of the Republican party ?

  98. Demonbeck says:

    I think this argument would be better served over personal email, rather than being aired out on a public blog. Can you two take this personal stuff elsewhere – maybe a truck stop or a public restroom?

    Seriously, let’s keep our pettiness focused on the issue at hand – whether Ray McBerry is a figment of his own imagination.

  99. John Konop says:

    Linda,

    You are right about China and our debt.By moving the bar lower with our latest 2 cent an hour trade and slave labor deal in the Middle East it will not help.

  100. Demonbeck says:

    John,

    Enough with the red herrings. Opening trade has proven time and again to work to our favor. The problems we will have with regards to trade deficits for the time being are minimal to the advantages created by stable economies worldwide.

    China now has a middle class larger than the our entire population – when there was no middle class 20 years ago. These folks have expendable incomes for the first time ever and are beginning to clamor for workers’ rights and American products.

  101. LINDA says:

    The difference between McBerry and Perdue, is that McBerry is on the common sense and right side of history. Unfortunately, the majority of Americans and even political insiders like that on this blog cannot or refuse to see the light. I would never discount 40,000 people that voted for McBerry. I just wish that the rest of you would wake up and see that the global elitists back Perdue and other puppet politicians to get what they need to have control of the world economy and it makes no difference whether the politicians are Democrat or Republican! If only you could see what I see. If only you could believe like I believe….remember Fleetwood Mac?

    But you are all blinded by smoke n’ mirrors!

  102. BB says:

    Ray is a figment of his own imagination which puts him at least one figment and one imagination ahead of Konop.

    LieS John, multiple…and you know what I am talking about.

    Yes, No

    Nobody attacked your kids, show me the police report.

    What are you talking about..black Republican, illegal immigration?

    No, and if so, who cares…the local sheriff supports removing party affiliation from sheriff races and has not attended a CCRP meeting in years.

    Now, answer my question, who will you support in November for the 6th district.

  103. LINDA says:

    China jails Christians for distributing bibles.

    China forces women to have abortions that have one child already.

    China operates with slave labor.

    China is exactly opposite of what we stand for: Demonbeck does Communism ring a bell?

    Oh, but that is ok because the United States now operates under a fear of terrorism and it allows for tyranny to take over. You people are fools.

  104. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    Guys like you green light thugs like BB with your last comment. Look at voter turn out, most people have ckecked out.This is why McBerry may be a issue in the ellection.

  105. Demonbeck says:

    Oh come on, John.

    To think that the Governor really needs to take the supporters of Ray McBerry seriously is hogwash. It is very typical for an incumbent with a primary opponent to get some protest votes in the primary. I would also ask you , how many of the crossover voters who voted against Reed voted for McBerry as well?

    Ray McBerry’s support will whither away come November. To think that he is now a (major or otherwise) player on the statewide scene is nonsense. He is a figment of his own imagination.

  106. John Konop says:

    BB,

    I did file a police report.

    Let me gat this straight, you think it is no bid deal a REPUBLICAN SHERRIF thinks you are a problem.

    This shows your lack of respect for the law.

  107. BB says:

    Answer the question John who ran as a Republican; who will you support in November, Price or Sinton?

  108. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    On the Georgia Gang it was pointed out last week that we have more Democrats then Republicans in our State.By the way, I did not know this.The key is Republican did a great job with turn out. If Reed and McBerry people feel out of the loop this could be a problem.

    Also Price out spent me 20 to 1 and I drew people from all sides. In cherokee county I had close to 30% of the vote. I had no name ID and spent only about 100K. This tells you people are not happy. Only 1 in 6 feel the economy is heading in the right direction.

    In a race with a spread less than 10% this could be a problem. Taylor has name ID and is a great speaker.

    A big issue is health-care and Taylor is all over it. If I was Sonny I would counter with the mandatory pay plan in MASS.

    I do support Sonny , and I do think he will win, yet I would not bet against Taylor.

  109. Demonbeck says:

    Reed folks don’t feel out of the loop with Sonny and these folks do come out and vote. McBerry folks are largely non-existent. You could have put a special needs monkey up against Perdue and he would have garnered 20,000 votes. Not because of issues raised by the monkey, but just because he wasn’t the incumbent.

  110. John Konop says:

    Demenbeck,

    The estimates are the flaggers are a 10% factor. Lets say Taylors picks up 2 to 4 points. Let say 2 to 4 points of Reed voters do not show. Let say 2 to 4 points of voters are just mad. As I said , I would not take Taylor or any voter groups lightly. This ellection will come down to less than 5 points.

    Turn out was light.

  111. Demonbeck says:

    Turn out was light in the primary. Flaggers do NOT represent 10% of the vote in Ray McBerry’s wildest wet dreams – quit kidding yourself.

    Yes, you can guarantee that Taylor will pick up some points for not being the incumbent, but don’t downgrade the power of incumbency that Sonny has, which should equal if not surpass any protest vote.

  112. Bill Simon says:

    So, Demon, if you support “trade” wverywhere, then I guess you had no problem with Ralph’s lobbying of the Mariana Islands’ deal, eh?

  113. Demonbeck says:

    The two don’t go hand in hand, Reed was paid to cover up poor working conditions on the Mariana Islands. His doing so contradicted his personal beliefs, implying that he would seel out his personal beliefs for money. That is not something I want in an elected official who represents me. However, I would support trading with the Northern Mariana Islands, because time and again we have shown that the best way to get American ideals into other nations is through trade.

  114. Bill Simon says:

    BB,

    Why should John have to state that he “supports” either candidate? I didn’t know that was a requirement of a Republican resident in the 6th District of Georgia to be “required” to support a candidate in a General…Seig Heil to you and yours, Barty-Boy.

  115. John Konop says:

    Demenback,

    Chavez has used NAFTA/CAFTA in Central America and Mexico as a tool to gain support. Look at the ellection in Mexico. The truth is the standard of living in Mexico went backwards after NAFTA and that is why illegal immigration is up. They did not like the sweatshops.

    The fact is Perot warned this would happen. The Pew institue study showd 70 % of illegals had jobs in Mexico ,but did not like the pay and working conditions.

    NAFTA will encourage illegal immigration
    [It is a myth that] NAFTA will reduce illegal immigration. As manufacturing in northern Mexico expands, hundreds of thousands of Mexican workers will be drawn north. They will quickly find that wages in the Mexican maquiladora plants cannot compete with wages anywhere in the US. Out of economic necessity, many of these mobile workers will consider illegally immigrating into the US. In short, NAFTA has the potential to increase illegal immigration, not decrease it.
    Source: Save Your Job, Save Our Country, by Ross Perot, p. 72 Jan 1, 1993

    NAFTA lets Mexican professionals work in the US legally
    Today, foreign professional workers can enter the US labor market, but only “temporarily

  116. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    Your facts on China are not complete. The are having big problems outside of the top 20%. FYI this is why they are having riots.

    Chinese Officials Vow to Spread Growth Benefits
    Decision Reflects Awareness That Inequalities Could Become Politically Troublesome

    By Edward Cody
    Washington Post Staff Writer
    Friday, September 30, 2005; 10:48 AM

    BEIJING, Sept. 30 — The ruling Communist Party vowed Friday to spread the benefits of economic growth more fairly among all levels of Chinese society, seeking particularly to close the yawning income gap between farmers and city dwellers.

    The pledge, issued by the Politburo, the country’s top policymaking body, was seen in part as a response to growing unrest, especially in small towns and villages, by peasants who feel they have been left out of the economic boom that has transformed China over the last two decades.

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    “In the next five years, China should pay more attention to social fairness and democracy and earnestly solve the problems closely related to the people’s interests,” said a statement relayed by the official New China News Agency. “Development of economy and society, of cities and the countryside, and of different regions, should be more balanced and harmonious in the 2006-2010 period.”

    The statement, also published in the official People’s Daily and other major newspapers, reported on a meeting of the 25 Politburo members held Thursday in Beijing under President Hu Jintao, who is general secretary of the Central Committee and thus the senior party leader. The meeting laid out an agenda for the annual Central Committee plenum scheduled Oct. 8-11, which will approve China’s 11th Five-Year Plan for economic development covering 2006-2010.

    Hu and his premier, Wen Jiabao, have strongly emphasized the need for more equitable wealth distribution since taking over the Chinese leadership nearly three years ago. Nevertheless, the gap between rich and poor has continued to widen as market reforms create money-making opportunities for private businesses and allied government officials, while often leaving peasants in the lurch.

    The Politburo’s call for more determination to attack the problem reflected growing awareness at senior levels of the party that widespread dissatisfaction over the glaring inequalities has become a potentially troublesome political issue. The number of violent incidents across the country has shot up dramatically over the last year, according to a recent assessment from the Public Security Ministry, and most stem from economic grievances against local authorities.

    “After 20 years of opening and reform, China has now come to a key stage of development,” said Ye Duchu, a professor at the Central Party School for up-and-coming functionaries, in a recent interview with Southern Weekend newspaper. “Problems like the income gap, the rural-urban gap, corruption and so on, have begun to emerge quickly. How to solve these problems and eliminate inharmonious factors now seem crucial to China’s opening process.”

    Study Times, the party school’s official organ, warned last week that the alliance between party and business, often greased by corruption, itself is a big reason for the income inequality that has farmers so upset. Citing a study published by the Labor and Social Security Ministry, the paper said incomes gaps have reached “the yellow light alarm level” and within five years could reach a “dangerous red light level” that could result in “destabilizing social phenomena” unless something is done to change the trend.

    Some Chinese academics interpreted that comment as an attempt by concerned government officials to make sure the issue received a prominent place on the Central Committee agenda and in the next Five-Year Plan. Judging from the report published Friday, their tactic was partially successful–the income gap got a prominent spot, but corruption was not mentioned.

    In addition to the pledge to pay more attention to those left behind, the Politburo said it would call on industries to give support to farmers and on more developed cities to give support to poor rural areas. How this would be done was not spelled out.

  117. Demonbeck says:

    First of all, Konop, Mexico’s problems have nothing to do with NAFTA. Mexico’s problems stem directly from the culture of corruption within the political system – an issue that Vicente Fox has worked diligently to fix. Without a stable government in place, it is hard for any progress to be made.

  118. Demonbeck says:

    As for your post about China, it is clear that civil unrest is a strong motivator for change. What is bringing about the push for the civil unrest? Trade with China.

    As I said, American ideals follow American products.

  119. buzzbrockway says:

    What an interesting thread. It started with flaggers, moved on to people’s disgust with the GOP and now to a debate on free trade – with a few personal fights thrown in for good measure. 🙂

    I’m with you Demon. Free trade is the way to go, and thank the Lord Fox’s Party won in Mexico. That Hugo Chavez clone would have made our immigration problem even worse.

    Also, McBerry will never have a sit down with Sonny, and to make threats is not the best way to begin negotiations with someone who just beat you 88%-12%.

  120. Demonbeck says:

    That’s like the Vanderbilt football team saying that they want to sit down with Georgia or their fans are going to pull for Auburn in the SEC Championship. Who cares? They only have 3 fans.

  121. BB says:

    It is not a “requirement” Bill, just a simple question. Who will Konop support, the D or Tom Price? The same question has been posed in every other race, why is Konop avoiding the answer? Set a good example for the “attacked” kid John, show him how to be a good sport when you finish as landslide first loser.

    Blog quote of the primary from PV — “Price isn’t going to take it by a landslide”. I guess it all depends on how one defines ‘landslide’.

  122. Bill Simon says:

    Interesting numbers on the 6th. Of the $50,000 Konop spent, he earned 10,316 votes…or, $4.85 per vote.

    Tom Price spent $1 Million and earned 47,904 votes…or, $20.87 per vote.

    Tom Price probably spent upwards of $750,000 of taxpayer dollars from his franking bullshit, so, add that to his vote total and he spent $36.53 total for each of his votes.

    Yes, Bart, he won by a landslide…and one he had to spend lots of money on to accomplish.

  123. buzzbrockway says:

    When UGA plats Vandy, Vandy has at least one more fan. 😉

    Bart,

    Often times, challenging an incumbent is a good thing. McBerry’s campaign didn’t accomplish much as best I can tell, but I think Konop ran a good race and even though he didn’t win, he brought to light several important issues – not the least of which is the conduct of Republican party officials. Why don’t Party officials just stay out of primaries? Let the voters decide for crying out loud!

  124. John Konop says:

    Buzz,Demonback

    Define free trade. If we had free trade why do we have the farm bills? Black was asked this in Cobb, and he said it was due to the anti-free trade deals like NAFTA,CAFTA……. So are you right or Gary Black? By the way do you favor slave labor? Do you favor human trafficing ? Mexico is falling a part after NAFTA. China and India are having riots over the spread between rich and poor. Chavez is using CAFTA as a tool against us. While 80% of Americans real wages are going down. The saving rate for the average family went from 11% to NEGATIVE ONE post NAFTA. Why deal with facts.

  125. Demonbeck says:

    “Why deal with facts.”

    Exactly, why deal with facts when we can just pick a convenient red herring and blame it? You know, I think “Saved By the Bell” began around the same time as Mexico’s economic down turn, why don’t you blame it all on Screech?

    The fact, which you refuse to acknowledge, is that Mexico’s problems stem from a corrupt government. Without a stable government, how can the laws of the state be enforced? Fortunately, we have seen Mexico’s government begin to stabilize under Fox and will continue to see that happen (hopefully) under the new administration. As the government in Mexico stabilizes, so too will the economy. Without the influx of investment from America, how much worse would illegal immigration be? The fact of the matter is that trade with Mexico is keeping their economy to the low levels it currently enjoys, without American trade, you’d see your very own Chavez in Mexico.

    We have farm bills to protect our farmers – who, in many markets, cannot compete. Take lumber for example. Canada owns a large percentage of its forests and leases lumber rights to companies for harvest. These companies have flooded the Softwood lumber market in America so much so that it is actually cheaper to buy Canadian lumber in Georgia for less than it is to buy Georgia lumber in Georgia. Certainly, you aren’t advocating an end to all trade with Canada?

  126. LINDA says:

    If I were John, I would not support Price! If Price is a crookded and corrupt politician, then why should he get anyone’s vote.

  127. LINDA says:

    Oh, I know we are now going to have the CC Republican facet of the party. Crooked and Corrupt, but that’s ok because they belong to the GOP! Just trying to live up to my agitator award. If Bill Simon says that there is something wrong with Price, then I believe it. But we did disagree on Westmoreland.

  128. John Konop says:

    Demonback,

    Mexico,

    You are right it is run by drug dealers. Why would you not factor that in the trade deal. Our trade debt grew with Mexico not the other way around post NAFTA.A big part of the growth of illegal immigrants are the workers and small farmers wipe out in Mexico post NAFTA. By the way it hurt family farms here as well. This is what ADAM SMITH warned about. Read you might find this interesting.

    http://www.sierratimes.com/05/06/29/norwood.htm
    CAFTA: Amnesty for Trade Cheats
    Congressman Charlie Norwood

    Georgia chicken farmers are trying to sell poultry in Central America under a 160% import tariff, while Central American farmers sell their chicken in America tariff-free. Any five-year old will tell you that’s cheating. So what are we going to do about it?
    The global trade crowd says we ought to reward these “competitors

  129. BB says:

    Buzz,

    Are you saying anybody who volunteers to help local party organizations should be required to stay out of politics?

    In Cherokee County, bylaws prohibit the chairman and vc candidates/elected officials from getting involved, all others are able to participate. Even moreso than Gwinnett, Cherokee has no democrat opposition, so races are decided in the primary. Also because potential candidates know they cannot win with a D behind their name, many run dishonestly as Rs.

    Make you a deal. I won’t tell you how to do it in Gwinnett if you refrain from telling us how to do it in Cherokee where every candidate received equally fair coverage.

    Bart

  130. BB says:

    No John, I am the VC of Communications for the Cherokee County Republican Party serving as a volunteer to help elect GOP candidates.

    Why won’t you answer the question about the General Election John?

  131. Demonbeck says:

    Yeah, John, tell us how well embargoes have worked in the past. Cuba certainly is suffering from a lack of trade with America. We certainly have showed them.

    Give me a break. You Adam Smith wannabes would rather cut us off from the rest of the world to save a few factory jobs. The fact of the matter is that GWB can give all the shoulder rubs he wants, the only thing that makes or breaks allies is trade. Embargoes, like the ones you are advocating, do nothing but start wars or dissent against us.

  132. John Konop says:

    BB,

    So why did you get arrested?

    And you think the police do not like you because they do not attend your meetings ?

    And the press lied about you , but you have no facts ?

    Bart you need help.

  133. buzzbrockway says:

    Bart,

    Y’all can do things any way you want in Cherokee, and feel free to say whatever you want about the Gwinnett GOP. I’m just telling ya’ after 6 years on the Gwinnett GOP’s Executive Committee including 3 years as Chairman, I found it best that all Party officials stay out of the public eye when it comes to primaries. It almost always creates more trouble that it’s worth.

    Obviously, fewer and fewer people in local Party leadership positions agree with me, which is one reason why I have no plans to ever seek a Party leadership position again.

    Buzz

  134. John Konop says:

    Demenbeck,

    You are right we need trade. The deals have to be a smart trade deals. As you know Warren Buffet and Alan Greenspan issued warnings that the current trade debt will kill us.This is why gold is up and Buffet moved his money out of the U.S. The dollar will go down if we do not fix this. This will crush savings and increase interest rates.

  135. John Konop says:

    Why I’m not buying the U.S. dollar
    America’s growing trade deficit is selling the nation out from under us. Here’s a way to fix the problem — and we need to do it now.
    By Warren E. Buffett, FORTUNE
    Oct. 26, 2003

    Print this Email this Submit a Question

    I’m about to deliver a warning regarding the U.S. trade deficit and also suggest a remedy for the problem. But first I need to mention two reasons you might want to be skeptical about what I say. To begin, my forecasting record with respect to macroeconomics is far from inspiring. For example, over the past two decades I was excessively fearful of inflation. More to the point at hand, I started way back in 1987 to publicly worry about our mounting trade deficits — and, as you know, we’ve not only survived but also thrived. So on the trade front, score at least one “wolf” for me. Nevertheless, I am crying wolf again and this time backing it with Berkshire Hathaway’s money. Through the spring of 2002, I had lived nearly 72 years without purchasing a foreign currency. Since then Berkshire has made significant investments in — and today holds — several currencies. I won’t give you particulars; in fact, it is largely irrelevant which currencies they are. What does matter is the underlying point: To hold other currencies is to believe that the dollar will decline.

    Both as an American and as an investor, I actually hope these commitments prove to be a mistake. Any profits Berkshire might make from currency trading would pale against the losses the company and our shareholders, in other aspects of their lives, would incur from a plunging dollar.

    But as head of Berkshire Hathaway, I am in charge of investing its money in ways that make sense. And my reason for finally putting my money where my mouth has been so long is that our trade deficit has greatly worsened, to the point that our country’s “net worth,” so to speak, is now being transferred abroad at an alarming rate.

    A perpetuation of this transfer will lead to major trouble. To understand why, take a wildly fanciful trip with me to two isolated, side-by-side islands of equal size, Squanderville and Thriftville. Land is the only capital asset on these islands, and their communities are primitive, needing only food and producing only food. Working eight hours a day, in fact, each inhabitant can produce enough food to sustain himself or herself. And for a long time that’s how things go along. On each island everybody works the prescribed eight hours a day, which means that each society is self-sufficient.

    Eventually, though, the industrious citizens of Thriftville decide to do some serious saving and investing, and they start to work 16 hours a day. In this mode they continue to live off the food they produce in eight hours of work but begin exporting an equal amount to their one and only trading outlet, Squanderville.

    The citizens of Squanderville are ecstatic about this turn of events, since they can now live their lives free from toil but eat as well as ever. Oh, yes, there’s a quid pro quo — but to the Squanders, it seems harmless: All that the Thrifts want in exchange for their food is Squanderbonds (which are denominated, naturally, in Squanderbucks).

    Over time Thriftville accumulates an enormous amount of these bonds, which at their core represent claim checks on the future output of Squanderville. A few pundits in Squanderville smell trouble coming. They foresee that for the Squanders both to eat and to pay off — or simply service — the debt they’re piling up will eventually require them to work more than eight hours a day. But the residents of Squanderville are in no mood to listen to such doomsaying.

    Meanwhile, the citizens of Thriftville begin to get nervous. Just how good, they ask, are the IOUs of a shiftless island? So the Thrifts change strategy: Though they continue to hold some bonds, they sell most of them to Squanderville residents for Squanderbucks and use the proceeds to buy Squanderville land. And eventually the Thrifts own all of Squanderville.

    At that point, the Squanders are forced to deal with an ugly equation: They must now not only return to working eight hours a day in order to eat — they have nothing left to trade — but must also work additional hours to service their debt and pay Thriftville rent on the land so imprudently sold. In effect, Squanderville has been colonized by purchase rather than conquest.

    It can be argued, of course, that the present value of the future production that Squanderville must forever ship to Thriftville only equates to the production Thriftville initially gave up and that therefore both have received a fair deal. But since one generation of Squanders gets the free ride and future generations pay in perpetuity for it, there are — in economist talk — some pretty dramatic “intergenerational inequities.”

    Let’s think of it in terms of a family: Imagine that I, Warren Buffett, can get the suppliers of all that I consume in my lifetime to take Buffett family IOUs that are payable, in goods and services and with interest added, by my descendants. This scenario may be viewed as effecting an even trade between the Buffett family unit and its creditors. But the generations of Buffetts following me are not likely to applaud the deal (and, heaven forbid, may even attempt to welsh on it).

    Think again about those islands: Sooner or later the Squanderville government, facing ever greater payments to service debt, would decide to embrace highly inflationary policies — that is, issue more Squanderbucks to dilute the value of each. After all, the government would reason, those irritating Squanderbonds are simply claims on specific numbers of Squanderbucks, not on bucks of specific value. In short, making Squanderbucks less valuable would ease the island’s fiscal pain.

    That prospect is why I, were I a resident of Thriftville, would opt for direct ownership of Squanderville land rather than bonds of the island’s government. Most governments find it much harder morally to seize foreign-owned property than they do to dilute the purchasing power of claim checks foreigners hold. Theft by stealth is preferred to theft by force.

    So what does all this island hopping have to do with the U.S.? Simply put, after World War II and up until the early 1970s we operated in the industrious Thriftville style, regularly selling more abroad than we purchased. We concurrently invested our surplus abroad, with the result that our net investment — that is, our holdings of foreign assets less foreign holdings of U.S. assets — increased (under methodology, since revised, that the government was then using) from $37 billion in 1950 to $68 billion in 1970. In those days, to sum up, our country’s “net worth,” viewed in totality, consisted of all the wealth within our borders plus a modest portion of the wealth in the rest of the world.

    Additionally, because the U.S. was in a net ownership position with respect to the rest of the world, we realized net investment income that, piled on top of our trade surplus, became a second source of investable funds. Our fiscal situation was thus similar to that of an individual who was both saving some of his salary and reinvesting the dividends from his existing nest egg.

    In the late 1970s the trade situation reversed, producing deficits that initially ran about 1 percent of GDP. That was hardly serious, particularly because net investment income remained positive. Indeed, with the power of compound interest working for us, our net ownership balance hit its high in 1980 at $360 billion.

    Since then, however, it’s been all downhill, with the pace of decline rapidly accelerating in the past five years. Our annual trade deficit now exceeds 4 percent of GDP. Equally ominous, the rest of the world owns a staggering $2.5 trillion more of the U.S. than we own of other countries. Some of this $2.5 trillion is invested in claim checks — U.S. bonds, both governmental and private — and some in such assets as property and equity securities.

    In effect, our country has been behaving like an extraordinarily rich family that possesses an immense farm. In order to consume 4 percent more than we produce — that’s the trade deficit — we have, day by day, been both selling pieces of the farm and increasing the mortgage on what we still own.

    To put the $2.5 trillion of net foreign ownership in perspective, contrast it with the $12 trillion value of publicly owned U.S. stocks or the equal amount of U.S. residential real estate or what I would estimate as a grand total of $50 trillion in national wealth. Those comparisons show that what’s already been transferred abroad is meaningful — in the area, for example, of 5 percent of our national wealth.

    More important, however, is that foreign ownership of our assets will grow at about $500 billion per year at the present trade-deficit level, which means that the deficit will be adding about one percentage point annually to foreigners’ net ownership of our national wealth. As that ownership grows, so will the annual net investment income flowing out of this country. That will leave us paying ever-increasing dividends and interest to the world rather than being a net receiver of them, as in the past. We have entered the world of negative compounding — goodbye pleasure, hello pain.

    We were taught in Economics 101 that countries could not for long sustain large, ever-growing trade deficits. At a point, so it was claimed, the spree of the consumption-happy nation would be braked by currency-rate adjustments and by the unwillingness of creditor countries to accept an endless flow of IOUs from the big spenders. And that’s the way it has indeed worked for the rest of the world, as we can see by the abrupt shutoffs of credit that many profligate nations have suffered in recent decades.

    The U.S., however, enjoys special status. In effect, we can behave today as we wish because our past financial behavior was so exemplary — and because we are so rich. Neither our capacity nor our intention to pay is questioned, and we continue to have a mountain of desirable assets to trade for consumables. In other words, our national credit card allows us to charge truly breathtaking amounts. But that card’s credit line is not limitless.

    The time to halt this trading of assets for consumables is now, and I have a plan to suggest for getting it done. My remedy may sound gimmicky, and in truth it is a tariff called by another name. But this is a tariff that retains most free-market virtues, neither protecting specific industries nor punishing specific countries nor encouraging trade wars. This plan would increase our exports and might well lead to increased overall world trade. And it would balance our books without there being a significant decline in the value of the dollar, which I believe is otherwise almost certain to occur.

    We would achieve this balance by issuing what I will call Import Certificates (ICs) to all U.S. exporters in an amount equal to the dollar value of their exports. Each exporter would, in turn, sell the ICs to parties — either exporters abroad or importers here — wanting to get goods into the U.S. To import $1 million of goods, for example, an importer would need ICs that were the byproduct of $1 million of exports. The inevitable result: trade balance.

    Because our exports total about $80 billion a month, ICs would be issued in huge, equivalent quantities — that is, 80 billion certificates a month — and would surely trade in an exceptionally liquid market. Competition would then determine who among those parties wanting to sell to us would buy the certificates and how much they would pay. (I visualize that the certificates would be issued with a short life, possibly of six months, so that speculators would be discouraged from accumulating them.)

    For illustrative purposes, let’s postulate that each IC would sell for 10 cents — that is, 10 cents per dollar of exports behind them. Other things being equal, this amount would mean a U.S. producer could realize 10 percent more by selling his goods in the export market than by selling them domestically, with the extra 10 percent coming from his sales of ICs.

    In my opinion, many exporters would view this as a reduction in cost, one that would let them cut the prices of their products in international markets. Commodity-type products would particularly encourage this kind of behavior. If aluminum, for example, was selling for 66 cents per pound domestically and ICs were worth 10 percent, domestic aluminum producers could sell for about 60 cents per pound (plus transportation costs) in foreign markets and still earn normal margins. In this scenario, the output of the U.S. would become significantly more competitive and exports would expand. Along the way, the number of jobs would grow.

    Foreigners selling to us, of course, would face tougher economics. But that’s a problem they’re up against no matter what trade “solution” is adopted — and make no mistake, a solution must come. (As Herb Stein said, “If something cannot go on forever, it will stop.”) In one way the IC approach would give countries selling to us great flexibility, since the plan does not penalize any specific industry or product. In the end, the free market would determine what would be sold in the U.S. and who would sell it. The ICs would determine only the aggregate dollar volume of what was sold.

    To see what would happen to imports, let’s look at a car now entering the U.S. at a cost to the importer of $20,000. Under the new plan and the assumption that ICs sell for 10 percent, the importer’s cost would rise to $22,000. If demand for the car was exceptionally strong, the importer might manage to pass all of this on to the American consumer. In the usual case, however, competitive forces would take hold, requiring the foreign manufacturer to absorb some, if not all, of the $2,000 IC cost.

    There is no free lunch in the IC plan: It would have certain serious negative consequences for U.S. citizens. Prices of most imported products would increase, and so would the prices of certain competitive products manufactured domestically. The cost of the ICs, either in whole or in part, would therefore typically act as a tax on consumers.

    That is a serious drawback. But there would be drawbacks also to the dollar continuing to lose value or to our increasing tariffs on specific products or instituting quotas on them — courses of action that in my opinion offer a smaller chance of success. Above all, the pain of higher prices on goods imported today dims beside the pain we will eventually suffer if we drift along and trade away ever larger portions of our country’s net worth.

    I believe that ICs would produce, rather promptly, a U.S. trade equilibrium well above present export levels but below present import levels. The certificates would moderately aid all our industries in world competition, even as the free market determined which of them ultimately met the test of “comparative advantage.”

    This plan would not be copied by nations that are net exporters, because their ICs would be valueless. Would major exporting countries retaliate in other ways? Would this start another Smoot-Hawley tariff war? Hardly. At the time of Smoot-Hawley we ran an unreasonable trade surplus that we wished to maintain. We now run a damaging deficit that the whole world knows we must correct.

    For decades the world has struggled with a shifting maze of punitive tariffs, export subsidies, quotas, dollar-locked currencies, and the like. Many of these import-inhibiting and export-encouraging devices have long been employed by major exporting countries trying to amass ever larger surpluses — yet significant trade wars have not erupted. Surely one will not be precipitated by a proposal that simply aims at balancing the books of the world’s largest trade debtor. Major exporting countries have behaved quite rationally in the past and they will continue to do so — though, as always, it may be in their interest to attempt to convince us that they will behave otherwise.

    The likely outcome of an IC plan is that the exporting nations — after some initial posturing — will turn their ingenuity to encouraging imports from us. Take the position of China, which today sells us about $140 billion of goods and services annually while purchasing only $25 billion. Were ICs to exist, one course for China would be simply to fill the gap by buying 115 billion certificates annually. But it could alternatively reduce its need for ICs by cutting its exports to the U.S. or by increasing its purchases from us. This last choice would probably be the most palatable for China, and we should wish it to be so.

    If our exports were to increase and the supply of ICs were therefore to be enlarged, their market price would be driven down. Indeed, if our exports expanded sufficiently, ICs would be rendered valueless and the entire plan made moot. Presented with the power to make this happen, important exporting countries might quickly eliminate the mechanisms they now use to inhibit exports from us.

    Were we to install an IC plan, we might opt for some transition years in which we deliberately ran a relatively small deficit, a step that would enable the world to adjust as we gradually got where we need to be. Carrying this plan out, our government could either auction “bonus” ICs every month or simply give them, say, to less-developed countries needing to increase their exports. The latter course would deliver a form of foreign aid likely to be particularly effective and appreciated.

    I will close by reminding you again that I cried wolf once before. In general, the batting average of doomsayers in the U.S. is terrible. Our country has consistently made fools of those who were skeptical about either our economic potential or our resiliency. Many pessimistic seers simply underestimated the dynamism that has allowed us to overcome problems that once seemed ominous. We still have a truly remarkable country and economy.

    But I believe that in the trade deficit we also have a problem that is going to test all of our abilities to find a solution. A gently declining dollar will not provide the answer. True, it would reduce our trade deficit to a degree, but not by enough to halt the outflow of our country’s net worth and the resulting growth in our investment-income deficit.

    Perhaps there are other solutions that make more sense than mine. However, wishful thinking — and its usual companion, thumb sucking — is not among them. From what I now see, action to halt the rapid outflow of our national wealth is called for, and ICs seem the least painful and most certain way to get the job done. Just keep remembering that this is not a small problem: For example, at the rate at which the rest of the world is now making net investments in the U.S., it could annually buy and sock away nearly 4 percent of our publicly traded stocks.

    In evaluating business options at Berkshire, my partner, Charles Munger, suggests that we pay close attention to his jocular wish: “All I want to know is where I’m going to die, so I’ll never go there.” Framers of our trade policy should heed this caution — and steer clear of Squanderville.

    FORTUNE editor at large Carol Loomis, who is a Berkshire Hathaway shareholder, worked with Warren Buffett on this article.

  136. Dawgsrock says:

    JK,
    Would it be possible to put links in instead of cut and pasting the entire article?

  137. conservativecore says:

    Please if there is a god John will find another windmill to tilt at and we can get back to a good debate.

    Oh and just for information Buffalo Bill Simon won’t discuss any inconvient facts that challenge his theories. Sounds eerily similar to the anit-evolution christian nuts to me. Maybe Buffalo Bill Simon has found his lost tribe.

  138. BB says:

    Konop,

    Blah, blah…why are you not addressing the simple question. Most Republicans find it to be a fairly easy decision, support the guy with a R behind his name. No surprise with your history of financial support for dems that you avoid the answer.

    Bart

  139. Demonbeck says:

    John,

    I have read each of the cut and paste jobs you have offered, and countered them with my own opinions, but that last one is a doozy. Why don’t you give me your own opinion and lace it with points made by Warren Buffett? I’m not inundating you with pages of reading to make my points.

  140. conservativecore says:

    For those of you that care about the facts, John and Buffalo Bill close your eyes now, the arrests in Cherokee were an abuse of power, even according to Buffalo BS. If you have any idea what is happening in Cherokee you will understand it is about control of the county and money. They don’t like the move townelake is making to take power away from the Canton crowd. The fact is the more the light shines on the cockroaches in Canton the faster they scurry away.

  141. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    The point I was making the current trade debt will hurt our economy. I do not agree with the solution by Norwood and Buffet , but we most do something.

    I would start enforcing our current trade deals. We know that the violation are numerous. Next we must stop China from IP theft which is about 90% of the time according to congress. This would generate about 200 to 250 billion a year. Next we should increase SBA style loans to companies that compete with oil companies instead of giving the money to Exxon…… Also no more investment of U.S. tax dollars to build overseas sweatshops. We must negotiate work standards above slave labor.

  142. John Konop says:

    Bart,

    My wife is a D, so what.By the way did you vote for Cagle ? Should we not vote for Sonny ? Tell me what is the line? Your support of the Highway bill and Energy bill show us who is the real conservative.

  143. Demonbeck says:

    John,

    It would be nice to hypothesize and wail about principles and whatnot, but some of us have to live in the real, imperfect world. A world where things aren’t even and fair.

    As a result, we strive for the best that we can get until that perfect world is created and make do with what we’ve got.

    In a perfect world, Farm Bills would be unnecessary and no country would impose tariffs, because every economy would be flourishing and the markets would be open and the business execs honest.

  144. John Konop says:

    conservativecore,

    Good fiction story !! I guess numbers and facts are a little over your head !!!!!! We have a great police department. Garrison cleaned up our county !!!! You are to little of a person to say who you real name !!!!!!

  145. Demonbeck says:

    The trade debt will be resolved by improving the economies of our trade partners.

    We cannot retreat from a world economy, lest we get ourselves in a worse situation.

  146. buzzbrockway says:

    I’m not so sure trade deficits are all that bad. I have a trade deficit with the grocery store and the gas station and many other places. I buy from people who have items I need and sell my services to my employer(who has a deficit in my favor). It’s no different with nations. We buy stuff from countries because they produce it cheaper or better than we do.

    Now, if we want to address things that drive up our production costs, such as farm subsidies, I’m all for that. Also, our tax code punishes small business, and many of our laws dealing with farmers make it almost impossible for small farmers to survive. Let’s address those things rather than getting away from free trade.

  147. John Konop says:

    Buzz,

    The key indicators are debt and wages.Both are going down. If debt is moving faster than wages this is not good.

    You are right a key factor is small business growth.

  148. John Konop says:

    Bart,

    The concept of ratios goes beyond your fingers and toes.The point is debt is going up faster than wages. By the way your hero Tom Price in the debate pointed this out,with his own figures about wages.The average wage is around 15 bucks per hour while health-care,childcare,college cost are growing 2 to 4 times faster than wages.

    Bart this is called a real wage decline. Are you lost yet. This is one of the reason debt is becoming a problem and are savings going down.

    The concept I used with gowing down means BAD for wages and debt.I know after talking points it is rough for you.

  149. BB says:

    John, meanwhile back in reality the economy is growing, stock market rising, average income increasing. You can reference the ultra liberal LA Times for your doom and gloom scenario, but most reliable studies and indicators prove you wrong. You like other dems have been hoping for a recession since last August when you told me, “just wait til Q1/Q2 numbers” show just how bad things are in this country. You are the ultimate economic hypochondriac searching for a symptom to justify your paranoid Chicken Little predictions that never come to fruition.

    Here is a ratio for you: 4.65 as in the precent mulitple of Congressman Price’s landslide margin of victory over your doomsayer ass. So who will you support in November John, the D or Congressman Price? Personally I hope you jump on the Sinton train…it will be the first truthful thing you have done since deciding to run against Congressman Linder.

  150. Demonbeck says:

    “The trade debt will be resolved by improving the economies of our trade partners.”

    “So how would this Work ?”

    When economies improve the demands and the rights of the worker improve. The lives of everyday people improves. We are already seeing in China, a movement from the poor for better pay and better working conditions. This will drive up the cost of production in that nation and will help to level the playing field with us.

    America’s problem is that we have had it so much better than the rest of the world (sans Europe) for years. The playing field is leveling out and our dominance in the industrial sector is no longer there. We have two choices: Adapt and play a part in the world economy or shut the world out and be left behind.

  151. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    That is not the trend. What has happen is a race to the bottom. China lowerd working standards to Mexico.Now we have the Middle East and Africa doing the same to China. At the end this is a simple supply and demand problem. What the economist are seeing is a shift of wealth from western middle class to very few in third world countries.

    The problem is simple math we have way more of them then us.Henry Ford was right if real wages fall you have less buying power.We have kept this shell game going by using debt. The part that is scary is 31% of consumer spending are people using a home as a credit card.

    Over a year ago I told a group of CCRP Republicans interest rates would go up and home defaults would go up.Guys like BB got upset and said I would be wrong.

    I made my money undestanding risk.

    Read the results.

    A Big Increase in 2006

    RealtyTrac, a California organization that tracks foreclosed properties nationwide, found that the foreclosure rate in March of this year was up 63 percent compared with last year. The company’s foreclosure data includes a variety of categories: homes that enter the foreclosure process, homes that are actually foreclosed on and homes that are returned to the banks.

  152. Demonbeck says:

    China may or may not have lowered their standards to compete with Mexico, I cannot confirm nor deny that and anything you provide will simply be claims made by someone pushing an agenda/point. The fact of the matter is, though, that the Chinese workers are now demanding more rights and better wages.

    This is a cyclical phenomenon. It happened in Europe. It has happened in America twice. Now it is going to happen in Asia.

  153. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    Your point is workers in COMMUNIST CHINA want more rights. And that in a COMMUNIST COUNTRY they will have lots of rights ?

    My only agenda is I am a father who wants what is best for your kids and mine.

    Romegaguy

    Ned Flanders ?

  154. Demonbeck says:

    No, they won’t but the first steps in a revolution are created by dissent from within, not from without.

  155. Chris says:

    How long do you think our work force can just sit here and wait for the Chinese to have their revolution before our wages start improving again?

  156. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    Chris makes a great point , do we fix this before or after the fiscal hurricane hits ?

    A ‘fiscal hurricane’ on the horizon
    By Richard Wolf, USA TODAY
    WASHINGTON — The comptroller general of the United States is explaining over eggs how the nation’s finances are going to hell.
    “We face a demographic tsunami” that “will never recede,” David Walker tells a group of reporters. He runs through a long list of fiscal challenges, led by the imminent retirement of the baby boomers, whose promised Medicare and Social Security benefits will swamp the federal budget in coming decades

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2005-11-14-fiscal-hurricane-cover_x.htm

  157. Demonbeck says:

    Oh sure, blame our problems with Medicare and Social Security on the US Trade with China. What next? The Braves June slump? Give me a break.

    Chris,

    The American worker is fine. Wages have not gone up in recent years, because of the economic downturn brought on by 9/11 and the Clinton Administration’s poor economic planning. Now that the economy has turned around, you will see wages beginning to rise as well.

  158. BB says:

    Demon,

    It was fun during the campaign making bets with friends right before Konop would approach them…bet – he will mention China at least 5x during his elevator pitch or I would buy dinner. Didn’t have to buy one dinner. LOL.

  159. Demonbeck says:

    Anyone who resorts to blaming trade with China on all of society’s ills is merely playing a modern day McCarthy.

  160. Bill Simon says:

    Well, Demon, it’s true! What other cuisine out there can you eat and be hungry 3 hours after? Chinese food! All that money spent on the lunch or dinner and you’re hungry all over again!

  161. John Konop says:

    Demnonbeck,

    All talking points from you with no facts !!! What business have you started or ran ? How many business plans have you executed on and made money?

    The bottom line is almost all economist have said the current trade debt will kill us.You and BB can keep thinking you can buy more than you sell and make it up in volume.

  162. Demonbeck says:

    John,

    I don’t have to have started a business, run a business or executed business plans to know that the world has gotten smaller and the world’s economy is getting larger. To call for the world’s largest economy and superpower to shut itself off from the world is asinine.

  163. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    Your postings demonstrate your lack of understanding basic business. You do not even match the right talking point to the question some of the time.Good luck !!

  164. Demonbeck says:

    John,

    Would you buy your supplies for your small business from a local store even though the prices are higher and the selection smaller or from Sam’s Club because the prices are cheaper and the selection is greater?

  165. John Konop says:

    The issue is Sam’s bought off congress to get slave labor goods at the expense of small business and the middle class to make the product. In the long run this will destroy our economy as wages fall and debt grows.Remember Henry Ford, I want people able to buy my products. We have a race to the bottom going on today.

    I do not blame the owner of the business who is forced to buy the product to maintain his RIO. This issue is do you want a country with the majority of money in multi-corps hands.

    Adam Smith the father of free-market, would say this is bad. That is why reading and working in economics and business helps you to think past talking points. You should read Wealth of Nations and you might understand what you are fighting for.

    By the way ,do you think it is ok to have slaves ?

  166. Chris says:

    John that’s not a valid question, about owning slaves. In order to get any productivity out of them you have to clothe, feed, shelter and nurse them to good health. Nobody could afford slaves today even if they wanted to. It’s far more economical to give workers a few bucks an hour for 8-10 hours of productivity, then send them on their way to fend for themselves the remaining portion of their day. Even those in poor health can still turn out a good 6-8 hours of productivity, justifying the barest minimum of wages.

  167. BB says:

    Just in case you haven’t noticed, there is nobody, I mean nobody that knows as much as John Konop…just ask him. You can offer factual data supported by respected economists, substantiated by real life examples and Konop will still disagree. He is truly an ego-maniacal wackjob starving for some position of power so that he can save the world from prosperity.

  168. Demonbeck says:

    When we had slavery in the United States, we had full employment. Sure, the employment was less than desirable and I for one would never condone it. Then we had a war, a war between the states in our nation. (During that war, some General burned Atlanta, they made a movie and a book about it.) Slavery was ended shortly after this war. In the century following the war, there were many movements throughout America that improved the workplace and made it much nicer for American workers. None of these movements were created or instigated by other nations. The workers started these movements.

    Now movements like these are happening in country’s with less than desirable workplaces and the workers in those country’s are demanding better treatment. The difference is, though, these workers have the help of outside nations and groups helping them do this.

    Without the demand for the products these people produce, these movements will die out. Without the products these people produce, our economy will die out.

    I can’t get much more elementary than that.

  169. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    You have to be kidding !!!

    You think slave labor is do to high employment rate.

    The Middle East,China,Mexico….has huge unemployment and lots of slave labor
    By the way ,did you not make a big deal out of Reed and his relationship with slave labor and human trafficing.So if you lobby for it is not ok , but voting for it as a congressman is fine ?.

    Do you understand supply and demand ?

  170. Demonbeck says:

    I understand supply and demand. The question is, do you? If there is no supply and demand remains the same, what happens to prices? How much are you willing to spend on your next trip to Walmart or Target? Most of us aren’t as rich as you either.

    I said that Slave Labor is not a desirable, but it is in fact a form of employment. The factories that hire these folks for next to nothing rely on the work produced by these people. If people refuse to work and demand better conditions, the factory has to acquiesce or hire new workers.

    As for Reed, the issue for me is not that there were undesirable working conditions, but that he was pushing his connections with the Christian Coalition while at the same time covering up the conditions on the island. That is contradictory – which was my issue with him. (I do have issue with the working conditions of the factories, of course. Just not enough to demand that my country sacrifice it’s economy.)

  171. BB says:

    Demonbeck,

    You will never win, been there, done that. No matter what common sense you put forth, Konop will disagree.

    BTW, I agree with you and am glad to see somebody else attempting to educate Konop. Unfortunately his steadfast position is based on fighting prosperity at all costs. He will not be happy until the world economy is turned upside down and we are at war with China, all of South America and any other country that dares to engage in commerce with America.

  172. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    Slave labor is wrong ,end of story !

    You need to read Adam Smith. The father of free – market was not for multi-national corps demanding slave made goods. Real wages are down since we started doing anti-capitalism trade deals.Ask the guys in the AG race, they will tell you , CAFTA,NAFTA,WTO CHINA….. is not free trade.

    By the way do you want to be part of a system that is dependent on slave labor. As a father I could not promote this value system to my kids.That is why this
    system will not work in the long run.You kick a dog to long bad things will happen.Morals do matter.

    So if a congressman had support of the CC it was wrong to vote for the slave trade deal ? Is that your point ? I still do not get how you could be upset at Reed and not a congressman who look the other way by supporting slave labor. It is not like Reed had a vote. Congress was on our payroll, Reed was not.

    By the way according to the (pro trade) IMF study wages are falling faster than any price gain from products world wide.If you read economic blogs this has been a big story.This is a bad trend.

  173. Demonbeck says:

    You know my point about Reed, but you are being dense just to demagogue it. I’m not going to stoop so low to argue with you over it, because it has absolutely nothing to do with the argument we are having.

    I could read Adam Smith, but frankly, I would rather get my advice on free trade from someone who did not die in 1790. Perhaps that’s your problem.

  174. Demonbeck says:

    By the way, do your kids get ridiculed at school for dressing like the Amish? Because shopping at Wal-Mart, K-Mart, Target, the Gap, Banana Republic or any other clothing store in America is supporting this value system that you cannot endorse.

  175. Romegaguy says:

    “Ask the guys in the AG race, they will tell you , CAFTA,NAFTA,WTO CHINA….. is not free trade.”

    Not sure what the Attorney General’s race has to do with Nafta, etc. Can someone elaborate on this for me…

  176. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    I thought you understood about the issue with Reed ? The main point of the scandel is made in the American goods (which my wife trys to buy) are made by slave labor in U.S.owned islands. So that means made in the USA according to congress is slave labor sewing made in the USA on products.

    A guy named Henry Tan (from China) payed off both parties to keep this scam going. Delay was the key congressman in this scandel. Clinton was also knee deep.

    People like myself who try to buy made in the USA goods were upset with the fraud.

  177. Demonbeck says:

    The issue with the Mariana Islands since 1993 has been to try and implement the federal minimum wage on US territories like in American Samoa. It has been pushed consistently by our most conservative elected officials, such as George Miller of California, Susan Collins of Maine and Sen. Akaka of Hawaii.

    The issue with Reed and the Mariana Islands in 2006 is just what I explained earlier.

  178. Demonbeck says:

    Oh yeah, that’s not a biased source. I have already read enough of your opinions to know that you are wrong, why should I listen to another diatribe of yours?

  179. John Konop says:

    Demenbeck,

    Charlie Norwood a biased source ? The source is two Republican congressmen and the business section. The story is all over the net.

  180. Demonbeck says:

    Congressman Tom Price’s China Connection
    Jun 29, 2006 John Konop for Congress – 6th District 6th Congressional District

    For Immediate Release
    June 28, 2006

    Contact: Steve Stoll, Campaign Manager, 770-852-2222

    The source is your campaign John.

  181. John Konop says:

    Demombeck,

    You left out the real source read for yourself.

    Click Here to Read Congressman Norwood’s Full Statement

    Click Here to Read Congressman Westmoreland’s Full Statement

    Click Here to Read the Article in a Chinese Newspaper about Tan and DeLay

  182. Demonbeck says:

    John,

    Enough with the red herrings. Opening trade has proven time and again to work to our favor. The problems we will have with regards to trade deficits for the time being are minimal to the advantages created by stable economies worldwide.

    China now has a middle class larger than the our entire population – when there was no middle class 20 years ago. These folks have expendable incomes for the first time ever and are beginning to clamor for workers’ rights and American products.

  183. Demonbeck says:

    Enough with the red herrings. Opening trade has proven time and again to work to our favor. The problems we will have with regards to trade deficits for the time being are minimal to the advantages created by stable economies worldwide.

    China now has a middle class larger than the our entire population – when there was no middle class 20 years ago. These folks have expendable incomes for the first time ever and are beginning to clamor for workers’ rights and American products.

  184. John Konop says:

    Demonbeck,

    Why not answer the original question ?

    So if a congressman had support of the CC it was wrong to vote for the slave trade deal ? Is that your point ? I still do not get how you could be upset at Reed and not a congressman who look the other way by supporting slave labor. It is not like Reed had a vote. Congress was on our payroll, Reed was not.

    As far as China the ratio is bad. 80% of the people have been left out. That is not a good economy. The spread between rich and poor is growing. That is why slave trade or human trafficing of people are growing.

    As I said read some economic blogs and you will see this is the big issue. The trade deals are not working here or in the third world.

    You might not agree , but my facts do check out. Why not find facts to defend your ideas?

  185. Demonbeck says:

    John, because I have explained to you over and over why international trade is a good thing and we are going around and around on this and I am not going to do it anymore. You can go on through life and be as backasswards as you want and can hate every other country but America and that is fine with me.

    When you finally realize you were wrong, I will happily tell you I told you so.

    Until then, I am done discussing this issue with you.

  186. conservativecore says:

    John clearly your campaign manager and your consultant, as stellar as they were, mislead you. The fact is like in boxing there is etiquette, I am not going to waste my time reiterating what the positives are for Congressman Price. I asked a simple question do you call and congratualte him on a good game and offer your support.

    You can anwer any number of ways, you called and congratualted him but are reserving suport, you called and offered both or as I will guess by your avoidance of the question you did neither. Instead choosing to leave your trash on our roadways and scurrying back to your cave to rant and have a tantrum. Never thought you were much of a man, and certainly was sure you didn’t have any character and this just proves it.

    Perhaps you should join Ralph Reed and just go away.

  187. conservativecore says:

    Its more fun this way. Why does it matter? You still have yet to answer a question asked. Deflect and avoid is not a winning strategy

  188. Jeff Emanuel says:

    CC, anonymously tormenting somebody may be “fun” for you, but, as I think you know, it’s not a productive way to get answers. Period. Would you answer somebody who was tormenting you from behind a pseudonym?

    At the very least, I give John credit for being willing to stick around after his primary loss. Give him a break, if you don’t mind, and actually discuss the issues.

  189. John Konop says:

    Jeff,

    Thanks

    By the way your post was fair on the other page.I really did not take it as being mean. I hope you got that in my answer to you.

  190. conservativecore says:

    Jeff I have asked serious questions that he will not answer but with other questions. Why not join me in aksing John the basic of questions.
    Did he congratulate Congressman Price
    Did he offer his support

    When he answers them with a straght answer then I think that we can move on. I think he should answer them or stop blogging and clean up after himself. I don’t think either is too much to ask.

    Instead of giving me grief why not hold his feet to the fire? Part of the lack of civility in campaigns comes from sore losers who show no character. That is my point.

    I asked two valid questions he has avoided and gone on his soap box to distract everyone.
    If my sarcasm and tiring of his continued avoidance of basic questions came across wrong sorry for that. I would venture to guess anyone on here who works in campaigns tells their clients if they lose to pick up the phone and call to congratulate the winner. And if in a primary that the loser should offer support. Do you disagree?

  191. John Konop says:

    conservativecore ,liberal to the bone,

    I did call Tom Price and we had a short nice conversation. He did not ask for my support.

    As far as my support, if you can show me the light that by Tom Price voting or supporting the Highway Bill, Energy Bill, NCLB,10 trillion dollar debt…. is a true conservative I will support him.

    Why not show courage and say who you are ? What is the big deal ?

  192. conservativecore says:

    Half a loaf is better than none at all I guess
    The rest of the question was “did you offer your support”

    But hey we are getting somewhere and don’t worry I will confirm you stort

  193. Demonbeck says:

    Youtube has posted a re-enactment of Sonny Perdue after hearing of McBerry’s threat – played by Jesse Spano…

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