Open Thread

Talk amongst yourselves.


  1. Harry says:

    Buzz, are you sure you want to do this on a Monday morning?

    My main problem with Deal, I suspect he’s still profiting from his inside “deal” — in spite of having simultaneously been on the federal payroll, and perhaps the state payroll in the future. I don’t like public servants who use their influence to grab government monopolies, but maybe it’s just me. Happens all the time? I don’t think so, at least not in so blatant a fashion.

    No, I’m not voting RoyB or libertarian, but not sure about NathanD. Sometimes it’s better to not vote at all. I know a couple who voted for the Obama “Hope and Change” and “Change We Can Believe In” and who now wish they would not have voted period.

    If King Roy came back, it would give the GAGOP a chance at continued self-improvement from the outside looking in, which might just be a good thing sometimes.

    • Doug Grammer says:


      You don’t know that Deal’s company has not been inspecting cars since August 2009, when the state revenue department said they didn’t care about safety as part of the inspection process?

      King Roy abused his power last time he was in office. Do you really want to let him do so again? Redistricting is too important, for me anyway.

      • B Balz says:

        Hey Doug,

        I am hearing that the budget and redistricting are the two major areas that lawmakers will be occupied with in 2010-2011.

        Since redistricting is based on census data, and that process is overseen by others concerned with preventing ‘irregularities’, what is actually left to do? What kinds of issues and concerns ought either Party have on this issue?

        Just curious, I keep hearing about redistricting, and the ‘horrors’ of Dems being in charge of it, so what is really at stake?

        • Doug Grammer says:

          Census data is contained for census tracts. The lines are drawn with census tracts to determine where the boundaries of a district are. Those final lines have not been drawn yet. Barnes and the Dems drew lines which used census data, but not in a “fair” way. The GOP legislature split less counties and precincts, and kept more communities of interest together. These lines are drawn for congressional districts, state senate, and state house. Bob Barr and John Linder were drawn into the same congressional district and they ran against each other, depriving Georgia of an elected GOP Congressman. Bill Stephens’ state senate district was 40 yards across at one point, in the middle of a lake. What was done was not done in the best interest of the state, but at an attempt to maintain power. Gerrymandering.


          after (GOP):

          • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

            So you would therefore posit that Republicans would not gerrymander for their own purposes? Because if you said that, you would be wrong.

            That’s why I’m for a non-par redistricting commission. It’s the only fair way to go.

            • Doug Grammer says:

              I’ll state that the Republicans in the Georgia legislature have not tried gerrymandering for their sole political purpose.

              You may want a non-par redistricting commission, but we don’t have one. I might be inclined to agree with you for calling for one, but for now, the legislature and Gov. get first crack at drawing the lines.

                • Progressive Dem says:

                  Barnes showed the potential problem of partisan redistricting. It’s only a matter of time before another group, Democrat or Republican, does the same thing. It’s in the DNA of politicians to try and select their district. We need a non-partisan commission.

                • Actually, EME, that’s not accurate. The Barnes’ Districts were thrown out after the 2002 elections and had to be redrawn for 2004. The Democrat controlled House would not agree with the plans submitted by the Governor and GOP controlled Senate and the courts ended up redrawing the plans. After the GOP took control of the House in the 2004 elections, there was some talk about tweaking the districts again, but the legislature decided not to.

                  Also, not only are the lines something that can be played with, but standard deviation is another issue as well that Barnes used effectively. The allowable deviation was 5%. that means that a state house or senate district can have a population either 4.99% greater or less than the ideal population. For example, let’s say the census says there are 10,000,080 people in Georgia. With 180 House Districts, each district should have exactly 55,556 people living in it. With a 4.99% deviation, a district will meet the one-man, one-vote requirement even if it’s over or under populated by 2,772.24 people.

                  What Barnes did was he overpopulated the Republican Districts by 4.99% and underpopulated the Democrats by 4.99%. Let’s say the GOP does the same thing next year that the Dems did in 2001. Going on the current R-D breakdown in the House, 105 – 75, that means the GOP would have districts underpopulated by 291,085. That means they could over stuff nearly 3% of the Georgia population into Democrat districts to make more Republican districts.

                  I agree with Progressive Dem’s comment above that partisan redistricting can backfire, though I don’t think a truly non-partisan commission can be appointed since those doing the appointing will always be partisan.

                  • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

                    Sorry for the error in information, however I think that the general idea still stands. ANY party will try to redistrict for themselves, and I’m not okay with that. I prefer representation for like-minded areas that are drawn in a manner that is not Gerrymandered, but rather go off of natural lines.

          • B Balz says:

            Thanks Doug.

            I recall 2 reps in my district who had been allied for years, having to run against each other.

            Relative to comment below, it seems that either Party is going to ‘mander for their own gain. I see this issue taking valuable time away from lawmakers.

            • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

              Doug, just because they haven’t yet, doesn’t mean they won’t in the future. If Austin Scott wins, I’ll bet my fortune on the fact that he’ll be Gerrymandered a safe district.

  2. BoogDoc7 says:

    So…about Beck’s rally…”mainstream” media claiming 87k, Beck’s people claiming 1mm.

    What I DO know is that pretty much nobody knows how to count people on the mall.

    What’s the verdict?

    • Dave says:

      Libs will say it was an absurdly low number like the 87k estimate! What a crock! The numbers were in the hundreds of thousands and the socialists hate it! What they’ll hate even more is when the dem trash is swept out of office in November in droves! Let’s see Allen Combs, whom I actually like, by the way, or Chris Matthews or any lib draw one one hundredth of the amount Beck did. Never gonna happen!

      • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

        Thanks, Dave. I presume you are some sort of numbers expert? And I also guess that you were there? Yes, that must be the case.

  3. B Balz says:

    Many GOP congressional reps are messaging:

    “…Unless Congress acts to prevent it, the largest tax hike in American history – $3.8 trillion – will occur on January 1, 2011. If this is allowed to occur, the average middle-income family in Georgia’s Sixth Congressional District will pay an additional $2,451 in federal income taxes next year, according to the non-partisan Tax Foundation. …” – from Rep. Tom Price.

    Seems like $3.8T is overstated, I recall the $300MM number being tossed around on broadcast news last week.

    • MSBassSinger says:

      I believe they are using the same misdirection libs and conservatives do – state the cost over a 10 year period. That is where the $3.8 trillion comes from.

      • B Balz says:

        Misdirection – Froma GOP rep? Shocked, just shocked I tell you.

        Thanks, MSBassSinger. Your explanation makes sense and shows the type of nonsense that makes it hard for anyone who is only superficially involved in current affairs to understand anything.

  4. Adnan Zulfiqar, a former Max Cleland aid, has delivered a sermon at the University of Pennsylvania lamenting what could happen to American Muslims because of the Ground Zero Mosque debate–“A controversy like this can make them radical.”

    Run that by me again, Adnan? The Ground Zero Mosque mosque controversy will could lead to the radicalization of your Muslim peers? Okay, then tell Imam Rauf to scrap his plans altogether.

    • B Balz says:

      “Because it can be built doesn’t mean it should be built.” – NY’er view who knows of some who did not come home on 9/11.

      • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

        “It’s not actually on Ground Zero. In fact you can’t even see either site from the other.”– Me.

          • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

            “Really, it’s closer to some strip joints and liquor stores than it is to Ground Zero. Oh, and what of that actual mosque which has operated 4 blocks from the Ground Zero site which predates the WTC construction?”– still me

            • B Balz says:

              Not to argue, but you are not “frum theah” so your insensitive remarks prolly sound cute to you, but frankly, they are pretty offensive to most most Americans….

              The existing mosque pays tribute to the Muslims that died that day. Your snarky position is the new Muslim shrine is not actually on-site to where 2,752 people died?

              That’s not very gracious.

              • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

                @B Balz. How do you know I am not? I in fact have numerous connections to New York City that you are completely unaware of.

                The “existing mosque” has been there since the 1970s, and pays tribute to, well, noone really. It’s a place of worship for a religion that is peaceful and good.

                The Park51 project is actually a community center (consider it a Muslim JCC of sorts) which is to be built on currently abandoned property a few blocks away from the Ground Zero site. It’s not on it. It’s not visible from it. And, frankly, if the mass media didn’t draw attention to it, nobody would ever have known it from Adam.

                What’s your reason why it can’t be built? Because it is a MUSLIM community center? Comparing the 9/11 hijackers to all Muslims is like me comparing the Westboro Baptist Church morons to all Christians because they bastardized a perfectly good religion. It’s inane and nonsensical.

                I’m beyond pissed off at the rampant bigotry by many Americans. You want to talk about terrorism? Let’s talk terrorism. How about the guy who slashed a cab driver’s throat? How about the arson in Murfreesboro? How about the attempted bombing in Jacksonville? Who were those all against, you ask? Muslims. And I would sure venture to say that all of them were committed by Christians. Shall we now disallow Christians their right to freely worship peacefully because of the actions of a demented few? Shall I condemn those who believe in Jesus because Timothy McVeigh was raised Catholic?

                It’s inane.

                  • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

                    I don’t doubt that fact, but that is completely beside the point. I addressed a plethora of things, none of which were the comparative frequency of hate crimes against any groups.

                • B Balz says:

                  Like I said,”…because it CAN be built, doesn’t mean it should be built…”

                  EME’s argument is valid, correct, lawful, and many believe it is still plainly wrong. We are at war with muslim radicals and extremists.

                  Many feel this building is a victory to our enemies cause. Throughout history, Muslim victories are commemorated with mosques.

                  Like, Gov. Deal, I prefer not to tell NY’ers how they should conduct their affairs. I agree the rule of law allows the mosque CAN be built and acknowledge the wrongness of that use.

                  As to bigotry, Americans do not hold a corner on that market, it is a human frailty.

                  • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

                    I agree with REP. Deal (he is not nor will he ever be a Governor). We as Georgia residents have no business telling NYers what they should do.

                    I would agree that this mosque would be a “victory mosque” if it were 1) a mosque, or 2) the Imam in question is a radical, extremist, or involved in the 9/11 attacks.

                    Perhaps many of you who have never been to NYC do not realize the literal bargain that they got on Park51? I would doubt that its proximity to Ground Zero had anything to do with it, but rather the cheap as HELL prices. If I could buy a plot of land for like $2.1 mil in NYC, I would do it in a heartbeat.

  5. ZazaPachulia says:

    College football starts this week. Finally.

    While UGA and Tech are prepping for their exhibitions, we’ve got a real game in Atlanta Saturday night. Which team is going to win at the Dome?

    And then, on Labor Day, the Crab Bowl returns (on ESPN). The People’s Choice for Heisman will officially kick off his senior campaign by whupping the Terps. For those of you unaware of who “The People’s Choice” is, his name is Ricky Dobbs, he’s from Douglasville and here is his obligatory Peach Pundit political connection:

    • Buzzfan says:

      As of now, I expect LSU to handle UNC Saturday.

      (But, if their scout teams played each other, I think UNC would get a shutout! :-Þ)

      • ZazaPachulia says:

        Look, I realize it’s not the Terps fault that Ricky Dobbs is so awesome, but be prepared for a tough opponent. Navy tends to enter the season running on all cylinders — just ask the 100,000 or so fans who attended game one of Ohio State’s season last year in Columbus.

        As a Navy fan, I’m never overly optimistic of our chances against the big boys, but I can’t wait for Monday — we need to extract some revenge on the turtles.

  6. RT @ terraM “I’m very high on Johnny Isakson. I know that’s crazy for a Dem to say,” (Roy) Barnes said. “If every Republican were like…Isakson, I’d be one.”

    The Status-Quo Establishment Party (aka Democratic-Republican Party) have apparently hedged their bets by putting up Big Gov Politicians in most races representing both factions of their party on the ballot in November.

    I’m so proud of our volunteers and their tireless efforts to make sure GA has some real choices this election cycle.

      • Doug,

        I think it’s interesting that you continue to focus on these things instead of more important things like fiscal responsibility. Perhaps your time could be better spent educating your GOP elected officials about what fiscal responsibility means. You may also want to inform Nathan Deal that when he talks about “smaller government” that you don’t get a smaller government by continuing to vote for a larger one.

      • In the cases of the three issues you’ve mentioned… how successful has your Prohibition laws worked?… 1 in 13 Georgians are in jail, Billions of dollars spent, yet the percentage of the population partaking has not significantly change one iota…. but you “feel” like you’re doing something positive, I understand… socialist always do.

        And btw, Governments don’t make things legal… they can only criminalize and/or draft and pass Prohibition laws against freedom… In other words, they can either recognize and protect liberty … or in the case of your party, NOT.

        • Doug Grammer says:

          As long as we all agree the LP agenda is making drugs, prostitution, and gambling legal. (or in LP speak, decriminalizing them.) The focus of my comment is to let facts of your platform be public and to help keep your candidates at 5% or less.

          • Doug,
            I’ll make a deal with you. You educate the “public” on the fact that your party advocates to continue to steel their money, take away their rights and have been lying to them in order to continue failed policies and I’ll admit that my party advocates to no longer do that. Agreed?

            • Doug Grammer says:

              No thanks. I’ll send my message out, which will be truthful, and you can send yours out. I may disagree with some of your FACTS as opnions. I will give y0u some advice though. I think to register with the voters, you are going to have to pull out a few specific things, such as making drugs, prostitution, and gambling legal. Thanks for not denying that.

              Let me see if I can translate LP speak. “Steel their money” means the LP thinks that “taxes should be voluntary.” I won’t go into how you will govern or provide services with no money or just voluntary money. “Take away their rights” could mean “prohibiting drugs, prostitution, and gambling.”

              I have no idea what lies you are talking about or which policies that you consider failed unless you consider the war on drugs a failed policy. I’m happy to compare platforms. Shall we keep going? It’s an open thread….

              • “Steel their money” means the LP thinks that “taxes should be voluntary.”

                Yes, I and John Monds personally advocate for reforming our tax system to a sales/consumption tax to replace income and property taxes.

                “Take away their rights” could mean “prohibiting drugs, prostitution, and gambling.”

                When it comes to people’s personal decisions, I think government should only get involved when an individual’s rights have been infringed upon. Private matters should remain private otherwise.

                …which policies that you consider failed unless you consider the war on drugs a failed policy.

                Yes, I and John Monds do consider the “War on Drugs” as a failed policy… and has lead to further encroachments/deteriorations of our rights by the government who insists to continue to attempt to make a flawed policy successful… but just as prohibition of alcohol did not work; neither will other prohibitions ever be successful. Study after study has shown that education and voluntary treatment reduces any and all vices at a fraction of the costs…. and most importantly, no infringement on individual Liberty.

                • Doug Grammer says:

                  From the Georgia LP platform:

                  “recognize the right of any individual to challenge the payment of taxes on moral, religious, legal, or constitutional grounds”

                  In other words, all taxes are voluntary. As far as a state sales tax to replace other forms of taxation, I’m on board with you. I imagine Deal is to, considering he was a co-sponsor of the fair tax.

                  From the national GOP platform: “In any fundamental restructuring of federal taxation, to guard against the possibility of hypertaxation of the American people, any value added tax or national sales tax must be tied to simultaneous repeal of the Sixteenth Amendment, which established the federal income tax. ”

                  Platform for platform, the GOP says that if we switch to a national sales tax we must end the income tax or else be faced with just an additional tax. The LP platform says that taxes are voluntary.

                  Please explain how you will govern and meet services with a voluntary tax system. It’s nice that you and your candidate seem to want to follow the taxation portion of the GOP platform instead of your own.

                • John Konop says:


                  This does not include the savings from police,courts, incarceration…..The war on drugs only helps the underworld, gangs and terrorist!

                  BW…..How much money is made from this single illegal substance? In fairness, nobody knows for sure. “Illegal” means that hard data are hard to come by. However, we do know that there are anywhere from 25 million to 60 million U.S. consumers (depending on how likely survey respondents are to tell the whole truth), and at an average cost of $5 per cigarette, factoring in one per day for each user, total spending on marijuana may add up to $45 billion to $110 billion a year.

                  What about possible tax revenue? From Canada we’ve learned that the production cost of (government-sponsored) marijuana is roughly 33¢ a gram. Currently, U.S. marijuana consumers pay at least $10 per gram retail for illegal marijuana. If the cost of retailing and distribution is the same as for legal tobacco cigarettes, about 10¢ a gram, then selling the (legal) product at exactly the same prices as on the street today ($10 per gram) could raise $40 billion to $100 billion in new revenue. Not chump change. Government would simply be transferring revenue from organized crime to the public purse……


            • seenbetrdayz, Ph.D. says:

              I still say that the GOP is the Libertarian Party’s best advocate. No education is necessary as to what the GOP stands for. We all know what they say they “stand for” but no one sees them actually stand for it (at least, not in the people who keep getting re-elected). This may be the anti-democrat year, but it may not be the anti-incumbent year, which is going to leave us right where we left off in 2008.

              I think it’s going to eventually come to a point where people cannot stand hypocrits (read: Johnny and Saxby). It may even come to a point at which people don’t actually agree with a particular platform issue, but would vote for that party’s candidate anyway because, hell, at least they say what they mean and mean what they say.

              Would I want to see drugs and prostitution legalized? I wouldn’t advocate for it, because it wouldn’t benefit me one way or the other, as I don’t really desire any of those things. (I haven’t been driven to prostitutes for ‘love’ . . . —yet anyways).

              But a wise man once said, “I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it”

      • Hank Reardan says:

        we are going need some drugs if your guy wins and I am willing to bet he will never release his tax returns and as for prostitution your guys may not be selling the good stuff just their souls

  7. “Deal, for example, said the toughest thing about being governor would be to turn down the requests of his friends, something that might have been interesting for media to follow up with considering he was facing possible ethics charges before resigning from Congress earlier this year.

    Both candidates also brought unintentional moments of humor. Deal, the Republican, called the teleconference back a few minutes after his session, not recognizing the number on caller ID and asking the room full of attendees who had just called him.”

    …and just what should convince us that Deal will be able to “turn down his friends”? I smell another ethics charge in his future should he win…

  8. John Konop says:

    If you are old enough to serve you old enough to make a fool out of yourself in public.

    IP-Old enough to fight but not to drink? Congressman wants to lower on-base drinking age

    ….. U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston, R-Ga., introduced a bill, HR 5958, on July 29 that would allow 18-year-old, active-duty servicemembers to purchase and consume beer and wine by the glass at on-base restaurants, enlisted clubs and other events.

    Purchases of beer and wine at base exchanges and convenience stores still would be prohibited, according to the bill…..

    • Dave says:

      I am thinking that depending on the base commander, 18 year olds in the service can already drink. I have a nephew, in the navy, who just turned 21. He was allowed to drink on-base before this past birthday. I’m a little confused as to Kingston’s bill, unless it’s to make the practice uniform. Anyone with better info on this please post.

  9. John Konop says:

    I guess not…..

    ….Bigot starts ground zero church: Where’s the outrage?

    A pastor who hates Muslims, Mormons and gays will start preaching Sunday. Will mosque opponents speak out?

    A bigoted pastor who has assailed gays and Muslims is launching the “9-11 Christian Center at Ground Zero” a mere two blocks from the World Trade Center site this Sunday, but so far the project hasn’t drawn a peep of protest from those who are outraged by the “ground zero mosque.”…….

    ‘…..Vote for Romney is a vote for Satan’

    While some evangelical Christians are defending the presidential candidacy of Mormon Mitt Romney from an attack by Al Sharpton, another prominent pastor is going further in his condemnation – saying a vote for the former Massachusetts governor is a vote for Satan.

    That’s the word from Bill Keller, host of the Florida-based Live Prayer TV program as well as

    “If you vote for Mitt Romney, you are voting for Satan!” he writes in his daily devotional to be sent out to 2.4 million e-mail subscribers tomorrow. …….

  10. debbie0040 says:

    This weekend marks the beginning of my favorite time of the year – college football season!!! Roll Tide Roll!!!

  11. Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

    Is anyone here going to discuss the fact that Phil Kent is a dirty stinkin’ liar? Someone make a thread about that crap, please.

    • B Balz says:

      Perhaps Mr. Kent, misspoke, repeated bad information, or even did a poor job of fact checking, but calling him a “…dirty, stinking, liar…” seems pretty severe. Mind you, I am not the biggest fan of Mr. Kent, but geez EME!

      • Erick's Mortal Enemy says:

        He…said…he…looked…at…them? There are two options here, neither one of them bodes well for someone:

        1) Nathan Deal is releasing his tax returns to only conservative dittoheads like Kent, or

        2) Kent is a dirty stinkin’ liar.

        It’s far beyond bad fact checking, and for the love of all that is good and holy this is one of those issues that is so well known (see: every Barnes ad thus far produced) that if Kent didn’t know the truth about it, he’s just stupid. So I guess there are three options, really.

        • Romegaguy says:

          Earlier this year Deal claimed he had received a refund for his 2009 taxes. The last couple of weeks Deal’s campaign has said that his Accountants are getting his returns ready to make public. The campaign sent Kent an email saying they were releasing them Saturday and Kent said they were released and he had personally reviewed them. Now the Deal campaign is saying that he filed an extension and hasnt filed his taxes yet.

          Seems it isnt just Kent that is a liar

          • B Balz says:

            Why would Gov. Deal respond to Roy or anyone about this matter. How will it help him?

            I would prefer that any Gov. commits to putting their business in a blind trust during their administration far more than a look back at their income tax records…

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