I Miss Lewis Grizzard

Lewis Grizzard had a gift of summing up Georgian’s thoughts even when we weren’t quite sure what we were thinking.  While he is sorely missed down here on Earth, I am sure he is smiling today on Dick Yarborough who did a pretty good impression of him in this column…

Primary Results Indicate November Elections May Be Going to the Dogs

By Dick Yarbrough

(7/26/06) The state primary elections are history — with the exception of a few runoffs — and that means we get a brief respite from all the mud-slinging political ads on television. Now it’s back to screaming car dealers and commercials about medical problems that shouldn’t be mentioned in a family newspaper. Better enjoy it while you can. You know that the political strategists are loading up their slop buckets and getting ready for the November general election.

For whatever reason, only about 20 percent of us voted in the primaries. That is a shameful statistic. I was in Iraq when people got their first chance to vote in a democratic election. Some walked 20 miles for the privilege. We won’t even get our lazy rumps off the couch.

In the Republican primary for governor, incumbent Gov. Sonny Perdue easily dispatched Ray McBerry, the choice of the flaggers. Flaggers are high-fiving each other over the 50,000 votes their guy received. I hate to burst their bubble, but Sheila the Family Wonderdog could get 50,000 votes without missing her daily 22-hour nap. Perdue got 370,000 votes, or 88 percent, which qualifies in my book as a rout. Flaggers have been telling me for several years that 79 percent of Georgians have said they want a chance to vote on a state flag referendum that includes the Confederate battle flag. Maybe so, but the flag issue wasn’t a blip in the primary and won’t be in the November general election either.

Meanwhile, back in the 21st century, Gov. Perdue will face Lt. Gov. Mark (The Big Guy) Taylor in the general election. Perdue says he will run on his record, which includes spaying a couple of dogs and giving an elephant a physical. Taylor has chosen not to run on his record because he didn’t do anything worth talking about while lieutenant governor. Perhaps a good campaign strategy for Taylor would be to charge Perdue with animal cruelty because of the poor dogs that lost their manhood, their self-respect and some other stuff I’m not going to mention at the hands of the governor. (Note to Taylor’s campaign team: I’m giving you this idea free of charge.)

Replacing Taylor as lieutenant governor will be either Gainesville Republican State Sen. Casey Cagle or the Democrats’ Jim Martin of Atlanta, a former state commissioner of Human Resources, or former State Sen. Greg Hecht of Jonesboro. Martin and Hecht are in a runoff, if anybody besides their closest relatives care. Cagle beat slick-as-oil Ralph Reed, who happened to be passing through Georgia on his way to the White House. Reed was the choice of the Christian Coalition, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, former U.S. Sen. Zell Miller, and a bunch of Republican fat cats. He just wasn’t the choice of the voters. Reed claimed to be an anti-gambling advocate at the same time he was helping disgraced Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff protect the gambling interests of some Indian tribes. I guess he thought we were too dumb to notice the irony of that.

In Georgia’s 4th Congressional District, Ambassador to Outer Space Cynthia McKinney is in a runoff with an earthling named Hank Johnson, a former DeKalb County commissioner. Currently stumping the district for the ambassador is media publicity hound Cindy Sheehan, as well as Darth Vader and E.T., the Extra Terrestrial — none of whom are qualified to vote in the district. Needless to say, I have a great interest in the outcome of this race. The ambassador is worth a minimum of four columns a year — six, if she slaps a police officer.

The primary results have been a bit unsettling for me. If I lose Ray McBerry, Ralph Reed and our Ambassador to Outer Space as regular column fodder, this would leave me with only President Peanut and his unsolicited and self-important pronouncements, bleeding heart liberals who think George Bush is responsible for all the world’s ills, including psoriasis, and people who talk too loud on their cell phones in the checkout line at the grocery store. If that happens, I just may be forced to spay dogs for a living.


  1. HSC Republican says:

    I have been a fan of Yarbrough for a couple of years now. I heard him speak on St. Patrick’s Day a few years ago. He was great! He said in one article that The Democrats and the flaggers both hated him. He said it was the one thing that those 2 camps coule ever agree on!

  2. Philly says:

    You Cagle supporters keep posting things that bash Reed. I forward them to Reed people. When Cagle gets his tail kicked in the General Election because Reed supporters either did not vote or voted Democrat I will just laugh.

    It would snow in hell before I voted for Cagle. It is a matter of principle and I always vote principle over politics any day of the week.

  3. debbie0040 says:

    As I recall, there were a number or Cagle people that said they would not support Reed were he to win. Do they receive that award too or does it just go to disgruntled Reed supporters?

  4. Jeff Emanuel says:

    Fair point, Debbie. In all honesty, had Reed won, I believe that the positions would be reversed, and that we could very well be talking about the “sour grapes of the Cagle people.”

  5. Maurice Atkinson says:

    dittos, I miss Grizzard.

    Thank God, Philly is one vote, unless Philly lives in Dodge County where dead people have been known to vote numerous times.

  6. debbie0040 says:

    We all need to understand that the Dems are the enemy not other Republicans.


    Steele Admits He Criticized GOP in Interview
    Unnamed Candidate Said Being Republican Was Like Wearing ‘Scarlet Letter’

    By John Wagner and Robert Barnes
    Washington Post Staff Writers
    Wednesday, July 26, 2006; B02

    Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele’s Senate campaign acknowledged yesterday that he was the anonymous candidate quoted by a Washington Post political reporter as saying that being a Republican was like wearing a “scarlet letter” and that he did not want President Bush to campaign for him this fall.

    The campaign made the disclosure after a day of speculation in the blogosphere and among political reporters about which Republican Senate candidate had made the disparaging remarks reported by Dana Milbank in the Washington Sketch column in yesterday’s Post.

    Democrats in Maryland and Washington pounced on the comments to portray Steele as either a chameleon or a hypocrite.

    “He realizes that he can’t win being a conservative Republican in Maryland in 2006,” said Maryland Democratic Party spokesman Arthur Harris. “He’s out of touch with the majority of Marylanders.”

    State Democratic Party Chairman Terry Lierman pointed out in a statement that Steele has held fundraisers with the president, Vice President Cheney, Bush adviser Karl Rove and National Republican Party Chairman Ken Mehlman.

    “He has taken millions from Bush and his top aides and even endorsed Bush in a prime-time Republican National Convention speech in August 2004,” Lierman said.

  7. BB says:

    Lewis was the best, miss his take on all subjects, especially Bulldogs and Tech. Yarbrough is good, but nobody can replace the legend. For an archive of some of the better Grizzard columns, http://www.lewisgrizzard.com.
    Amazing how some written years ago still apply today, including ‘If Y’all Don’t Like Dixie, Delta is Ready’ — with this closing statement, “Delta may be hurting financially, but it’s still ready to take you back to Toledo when you are ready to go.”

  8. Michael C says:

    Debbie are we to support Republicans like Chafee or Spectre just because they have an R by there name? That I can not do. I am a conservative first, Republican second.

    I loved Grizzard’s columns trying to sell grits trees during the Democratic Convention of ’88.

  9. Demonbeck says:

    My favorites are Gatewood Dooper at the Masters and the one about his father dying. I have yet to find that one online. The man could bring tears to your eyes from laughing and from sadness.

  10. debbie0040 says:

    Michael, I don’t like them either but if they are running against a Democrat they are better than the Democrats. I will admit I would love to see them gobbled up in the GOP primary. Also Snow and few others.

    I am not saying you can’t criticize a Republican if they don’t uphold Republican principles but it needs to be tempered with the understanding the Dems are the real enemy. I am very critical of Bush’s illegal immigration plan and some of his policies. I criticize those policies . I don’t say Bush should disappear from the GOP or that I am embarrased by Bush or that anyone that supports has a scarlett letter…

    I liked Grizzard’s dog.

  11. Michael C says:

    Debbie I see your point and I agree to an extent. But sometimes you just have to take a stand on principle and stick to it. Do you really affect change if you continue to support RINOs etc.? I argue not. Reed is by no means a RINO, just using this as an illustration.

    I don’t begrudge Philly for not supporting Cagle, I had pledged to skip the Lt Gov race had Reed won. It was a principled stand.

    I know you are trying to bring the party back together. Thank you for your commitment to doing so.

  12. debbie0040 says:

    Michael, I understand your point but unfortunately sometimes you have to decide between the lesser of the evils.
    For example, what if Arlen Specter were running against Uncle Teddy Kennedy?

    I would not have begrudged you for not supporting Reed had he won. Let’s be honest about the Lt. Governor in Georgia. It is simply a placeholder and has no real power. If Cagle wins and the power is given back to the office, what will happen if we have another Democrat Lt. Governor? Will the GOP simply play the same games as the Democrats do and remove power again?

    I am frustrated by the fact when the GOP is in the minority we criticize the Dems for playing political games but when we are in majority we do the same things we blasted the Dems for…

    We have higher principles and standards than the Dems and should act accordingly.

  13. Missing Lewis Grizzard, huh?

    What, Cynthia Tucker isn’t filling that niche?

    LOL. Joking, of course. Cynthia must be the most miserable person on the face of the earth.

  14. Maurice Atkinson says:

    Demonbeck, Richard Pryor may be a viable candidate in Dodge County, but I doubt it would fly in the rest of the state.

  15. Demonbeck says:

    The above was a reference to Brewster’s Millions to all of you youngsters who don’t know any better.

    A political leaning column from my boyhood idol, Lewis Grizzard, a Great American.

    Dinner At The White House

    WASHINGTON – I’m not certain how it came to pass that I was invited to a White House state dinner last week in honor of, as it said on the invitation, the visit of his Excellency, The Prime Minister of India and Mrs. Gandhi.
    I don’t know anything about India except they allow cows to wander around in the streets over there because they think cows are sacred. I don’t have anything against cows, but I’m glad we don’t think they are sacred over here because if we did, there wouldn’t be any such thing as a bacon cheeseburger.

    When I responded to the social secretary of the White House to accept the invitation, I asked how long the dinner would last.

    “I’m not sure,” she said, “Why?”

    “Because if I don’t have my tux back to the rental place by 11, I’ll have to pay extra,” I explained.

    She laughed, nervously.

    I had a great time at the White House. When you walk into the Gold Room for dinner, you have to pass through a foyer where the press and the photographers are located.

    Jimmy did better

    I walked in behind Loretta Young, the actress, who looked darn good for a woman 300 years old, and Dr. Henry Kissinger, and his wife, who resembles a corn stalk and smoked one cigarette after the other, despite the fact ashtrays are at a premium in the White House. Oh, well, there’s always the floor.

    The press asked Loretta Young and Dr. Kissinger a lot of questions and all the photographers snapped pictures of their entry into the dinner.

    When I was announced, nobody took my picture but a lady from the Washington Post did ask if this was my first trip to the White House.

    “Surely you jest,” was my reply.”The last time I was here, we all sat in the backyard and drank beer and listened to Willie Nelson.”

    Say what you want to about Jimmy Carter, but the man knew how to throw a party at the White House.

    Know who provided the after dinner entertainment at Reagans party for Prime Minister Gandhi? Some bald-headed guy who played the cello, that’s who. He had a foreign name President Reagan had trouble pronouncing when he introduced the man to the dinner guests.

    Cello players, I decided, are a lot like alligators. You’ve seen one, you’ve seen ’em all.

    No soda crackers?

    The food. We had Crab and Cucumber Mousse and Supreme of Cornish Hen, Wild Rice with Toasted Walnuts, and Baby Zucchini. We had Bibb Lettuce with Garden Chives and Grape Cheese, and we had Chocolate Boxes with Fruit Sorbets and Peach Champagne Sauce.

    Our wines were Bacigalupi Chardonnay (1983), Saintsbury Garnet (1983) and Schramsberg Cremant DemiSec, which I found assertive, but not offensive. My only complaints with the meal were there were no soda crackers to eat with the salad, and I am foursquare against the slaughter of baby zucchinis.

    I got to shake hands with the president. He is a nice man, but he is shorter than I thought he was. I chatted with Mrs. Reagan, who has a very nice smile in person. I met Maureen Reagan, who needs to lose a few pounds, and I danced with a dress designer from New York who spoke with a British accent despite the fact she was from Missouri.

    When the party was over I went back to my hotel room and ordered a bacon cheesburger from room service and ate it while sitting in my underdrawers.

    Holy cow, I thought to myself, what a perfect way to end a storybook evening.

  16. debbie0040 says:

    If you are speaking in the GOP Primary, Zell. In Georgia, I think pigs would fly before a gay Republican would be nominated. Zell is now Republican. I would find it extremely hard to vote for anyone that is gay.

  17. debbie0040 says:

    Great and accurate article by Randy Evans.

    J. Randolph Evans
    Column No. 819 (7/26/06)

    Primary 2006 – what happened, what didn’t.

    Even though the national media treated Ralph Reed’s loss and Cynthia
    McKinney’s vulnerability as surprises, primary election day in Georgia
    in 2006 yielded little in the way of the unexpected. While many things
    have changed in the political world, most things have stayed the same.

    First, primaries are all about turnout. Both the Democratic Primary
    Governor and the Republican Primary for Lieutenant Governor proved this
    point. In both parties, there is a nine hundred pound elephant in the
    room. For Democrats, it is the organized African-American vote. For
    Republicans, it is the religious right.

    If energized and/or invested, the elephant will dominate the outcome of
    a primary. Mostly, this is the result of just numbers. Each group can
    represent almost forty percent of the primary vote in each party’s
    primary. For a candidate, this means that you need only get a little
    more than ten percent of the remaining sixty percent in order to win.

    Mark Taylor successfully energized and/or invested the organized
    African-American vote in the Democratic primary. His work on this
    started years ago and involved building strong personal relationships
    with key African American leaders. In addition, he never wavered on
    issues in the African American community. These efforts paid off on
    primary election day.

    Some will focus on Cathy Cox’ missteps in the course of her campaign.
    The truth is that the Democratic Primary was over before it ever began.
    Mark Taylor’s infrastructure, financing, and groundwork made his
    impressive win a foregone conclusion. In the final days, his only
    challenge was to avoid the kinds of colossal mistakes that can snatch
    defeat from the jaws of victory.

    Ralph Reed successfully energized and/or invested the religious right.
    But he did not win. Instead, his candidacy succumbed to the nonstop
    battering from his opponent, the media, and old political enemies. The
    result was that the voters that Ralph Reed needed to win the Republican
    Primary either stayed home, or they skipped the Lieutenant Governor’s
    race on the ballot. Some even voted against him.

    Make no mistake, it was Ralph Reed’s past associations and actions that
    were fired back at him. However, the missiles and rockets were fired
    in an organized, coordinated, and systematized attack. The timing of
    (1) reports (by his enemies in the United States Senate); (2) news
    stories and opinion editorials (by the mainstream media, especially the
    Atlanta Journal-Constitution); and, (3) the lawsuits/allegations
    (facilitated by hostile groups) were orchestrated to assure that he
    could never escape from the “scandal” cloud arising from the Jack
    Abramoff investigation.

    Cynthia McKinney had a similar problem. She clearly has wired large
    segments of the voters in her Congressional District. But she could
    put her opponents away. Instead, her own past conduct combined with
    intense media coverage kept her from skating to outright victory.

    Second, negative advertisements work. As much as candidates, voters,
    and the media complain (and complain loudly), negative advertisements
    change voting patterns. Both Mark Taylor and Casey Cagle made this
    point with their very, very effective use of attack advertisements.

    Unfortunately, the more vicious the advertisement, the more effective
    was. As a result, political consultants have pushed negative attack
    advertisements early and often. Because the attack advertisements
    candidates have agreed. Based on their success in the primary
    voters should expect the negative campaign attack advertisements in the
    fall elections to make the negative advertisements in the primary
    election look like a walk in the park.

    J. Randolph Evans
    McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP
    Suite 5300
    303 Peachtree Street
    Atlanta, GA 30308

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