Morning Reads For Monday October 22, 2012

UPDATE: Congressman Lewis dances “Gangnam Style.” Hat Tip: Political Insider

Georgia Items
– AJC: Atlanta region sees spike in public corruption cases.
– The Boy Scout’s “perversion files” scandal impacts Georgia.
– A documentary looks at the Tri-State Crematory scandal.
– The “Capitol Steps” are coming to Athens for a pre-election performance.
– Walter Jones: Governor Putting Stamp On Higher Education.
Five counts dropped against Clayton’s Victor Hill
– Erick Erickson says vote “Yes” on the charter school amendment.
– Wingfield: Spend more money on traditional schools? We tried that.

Georgia Election Items
– CD12: Augusta Chronicle talks about Lee Anderson and the Athens Banner-Herald talks about John Barrow.
– Jim Galloway says Sen. Chambliss might get a challenge in 2014.
– A look at the PSC district 3 race, incumbent Eaton (R) v. Oppenheimer (D) v. Ploeger (L).

National Election Items
– The President and the Governor get ready for tonight’s final debate. Topic: foreign policy.
The President outraises the Governor in September, raising $126 million to Romney’s $78. Obama also outspent Romney $115.6 to $65 million. For some reason the Obama campaign borrowed $15 million from BoA.
– Sandra Fluke drew a crowd of less than 12 while campaigning for Obama in Reno. Mark Steyn comments.
– UN says “don’t elect Romney.”
– RCP National Average: Obama 47.1, Romney 46.9.
– RCP State Averages: FL: Romney +2.1, IA: Obama +2.4, NH: Romney +1.0, OH: Obama +2.1, PA: Obama +5.0, VA: Tie, WI: Obama +2.8.
– RCP Electoral College map.
– 11 Senate seats are toss-ups.

National/International Items
– RIP: George McGovern.
Three dead, four wounded in a shooting in Wisconsin. The suspect was later found dead.
– Joe Scarborough says the Tea Party has been good for the GOP.
– Elections in the Basque and Galicia regions of Spain were held yesterday.

Miscellaneous Items
– Olympic Medalists McKayla Maroney and Jonathan Horton will speak to students at Georgia Gwinnett College today. The pair will join other Olympic Gymnasts at the Gwinnett Arena this weekend.
– The Detroit Tigers are in the World Series.
– The Giants force game 7 against the Cardinals.
– The weekend box office results.


  1. The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

    “Sandra Fluke drew a crowd of less than 12 while campaigning for Obama in Reno.”

    Oh, how so deliciously rich to see Eurotrash-style Socialist rhetoric on its deathbed.

    Let’s twist the knife and put these miserable communist scumbags out of their misery for good on November 6th!

  2. John Konop says:

    I was very skeptical on a local level if the Tea Party would focus on real issues or fall into the trap of just spewing talking points…….I have to give Debbie Dooley and company credit with creating a group that has done a good job of montering statewide fiscal issues. If the Tea Party can focus on fiscal policy over social policy and distraction issues like ” birther” claims they will be a key player.

    • wicker says:

      I am going to keep beating this drum for as long as it is relevant. Conservative groups like the Tea Party should restrict themselves from social policy and distraction issues when liberal groups do the same. So long as liberal and libertarian groups push liberal social policy, moderate and conservative groups should exist and organize to oppose them. That is the way that a democracy is supposed to work.

      • kyleinatl says:

        I seriously doubt there are any actual MODERATE groups pushing to overturn Roe v. Wade, denying gay marriage, put creationism in schools, and trying to outlaw forms of stem cell research.

    • Bob Loblaw says:

      Debbie Dooley has done a good job of mouthing off, making threats and failing to follow up on them. All while displaying an amazing lack of understanding of both state and federal government. She’s thrown more knives at elected officials than you could find in a Steven Segal movie. Where’s that lawsuit on the Constitutionality of the T-SPLOST again? Still waiting on that. There’s a fiscal issue: whether or not the state can tax by region. She said she’d sue. She’s not. I don’t call that a “good job of monitoring statewide fiscal issues”. She’s just a good quote machine for lazy reporters.

      • wicker says:

        Ms. Dooley – and she admitted as such the next day – was primarily concerned about keeping suburban taxpayer money away from Atlanta-Fulton-DeKalb. So, when the metro Atlanta region T-SPLOST failed, she lost interest in the lawsuit, even though it passed in other regions. Curiously, her “Plan B” for the T-SPLOST included allowing Cobb, Gwinnett, Paulding etc. to come together to fund their own transportation projects (and for DeKalb, Fulton and Clayton to do the same FWIW). That would pose the same – or at least similar – constitutional issues as T-SPLOST did, but since it did not involve suburban money going to intown (though technically Clayton IS suburban Atlanta, but why bother with semantics … I guess the REAL concern was Republican money going to Democratic areas or whatever) she was willing to advocate it rather than sue to stop it.

        I recall during the Occupy Atlanta nonsense last year her threat to sue Kasim Reed for civil rights violations because he “allowed” Occupy Atlanta to take over a park without a permit while requiring a permit for the Tea Party. That lawsuit threat never went anywhere either … likely because the right to break the law is not a legally respected civil right.

        • Bob Loblaw says:

          Oh, ok. So Debbie Dooley was only concerned about the Constitution when the issue would have been in her county? The Constitution isn’t “about” one county–its a document that applies statewide. The T-SPLOST is either unconstitutional statewide or its not. I guess she only cares about the Constitution when it applies to her own backyard.

          Having Counties “come together” to fund transportation projects isn’t a Plan B. It was here long ago. It’s called an intergovernmental agreement, and counties are free to enter into such agreements to jointly fund projects without having to have a referendum.

          Dooley is a carnival barker. Sue! Sue! Sue! If its unconstitutional in the ARC, its unconstitutional in the Heart of Georgia. If she cared about Georgia as a whole rather than focusing on her backyard, she’d of backed up her doubletalk and filed suit.

          She ought to read the story about the boy that cried “wolf”.

      • Scott65 says:

        First let me state that I am NOT a TP supporter, but I have a little more respect for Debbie. One person cant do it all, and on the whole, I have found that she walks the walk as well as talk the talk and is not afraid in the least to go against Republicans as well as Democrats when she feels they violate her principles.
        As for social issues…its hard to justify being a party of less government when you interject your morals into peoples lives not with persuasion, but with the police power of the government. I’ve yet to see that one explained adequately
        (see Calypso…paragraphs!)

        • Bob Loblaw says:

          What walk has she walked? Flaming out on T-SPLOST suit? Suit vs. Mayor Reed? I’ll agree that she’s willing to spew attacks, with or without merit, at every elected official in Georgia when, as you put it, they “violate her principles”.

          I guess her principles don’t involve anything like keeping your word or standing up for the Constitution, after you promised to. Glad she’s not an elected. She threatened that on us already, too, only to wimp out when another “leader” in the Tea Party qualified.

          She’s just the one that you have the most exposure to, thanks to the lazy reporters at AJC and Channel 2.

          • Scott65 says:

            T-Splost is but one piece of legislation. When there was a bill moving through the dome which would have limited protests at personal residences, she was there protesting (with unions who also opposed it). Thats one, and if I try I’m sure I could think of more, but you asked for one…and that qualifies

              • John Konop says:


                You know I like and respect you for the intelligent comments you have made on the PP agree or not. With that said, I have known Debbie for years, and she has done a tremendous job educating herself on issues agree or not. And I have to give her credit, beyond just building a large organization of taking the time to go beyond talking points with issues.

                • Bob Loblaw says:

                  We’ll just have to agree to disagree on her competence. Throughout the T-SPLOST debate she would, for instance, say that the law would be a bad one because GDOT would be the custodian of the funds and basically, that GDOT couldn’t be trusted.

                  It is federal law that for matching purposes, that a state designate one agency for which the feds will deposit funds. In short, the trust fund had to go there. She was that clueless, or maybe just misleading.

                  There’s enough empty threats coming from her and attacks on elected officials that she smacks of the angry old man at the end of the counter at the coffee shop. Railing about crooks and politicians and how he’s gonna sue everybody. If T-SPLOST is unconstitutional and she said she would sue if it passed and she fails to back that up then she’s bringing nothing of substance to the table than any other politician who makes promises and after the election, fails to back them up.

        • wicker says:


          “As for social issues…its hard to justify being a party of less government when you interject your morals into peoples lives not with persuasion, but with the police power of the government.”

          Huh? My statement was that social conservatives should stop pressing their agenda when social liberals stop pressing theirs. And social liberals use the same police power of the government. Quit pretending otherwise.

          • Scott65 says:

            Wicker…hate to disagree with you…but what part of that statement mentions conservative or liberal (both of which I assume have morals of one kind or another). I also dont believe mine was a direct response to your comment per say but a comment/observation about the small government hypocrisy. Believe what you want…but thats way more a problem for the right than the left, who believes in more government, thus imposing their morals would not be hypocritical at all, and in most situations they dont (ironic isn’t it). If you can name some on par…I’d like to hear them.

            As for the TP embracing a stand on moral issues and not sticking to the original issues opens them up to the same criticism of hypocrisy (since most of those issues have been of the religious right)

  3. Ed says:

    “Erick Erickson says”

    Who is that and why should I listen to him?

    Also, good to know that LDIG was a long-planned troll job (or is now a troll, whichever).

    • “Who is that and why should I listen to him?”

      He is a radio talk show host on “WSB AM 750 and Now 95.5 FM” and since “WSB AM 750 and Now 95.5 FM” rules the Atlanta airwaves with an iron fist you are compelled to listen and obey.

              • Calypso says:

                Keep that up and you’re going to give me a gender identification complex. Not really.

                Ed, how do I get an avatar to go with my posts?

                • SallyForth says:

                  Me too! Me too! I’ve been trying to figure out how to get an avatar, but so far it has been way above my pay grade.

                    • Calypso says:

                      Thanks, I’ll see if my rudimentary technical skills will allow me to put a face with my name. If my HTML abilities are any indicator, it will not be pretty.

                    • SallyForth says:

                      Thanks, Charlie – but some of us may be beyond help on this I’m afraid. :( I would like to have an avatar, just an easy uncomplicated one.

                      Calypso, you need to read the stuff on the link carefully before you take the leap. If you do manage to set up one of their avatars, it will follow you all over the internet and anybody who clicks on your avatar will link directly to your personal info. Do you really want to be THAT well-known?

                      Ed, when I click on your avatar nothing happens (which I consider a good thing). Can you give us a link to wherever you set yours up? Calypso and I are partners in crime on this quest, and the operative word is “easy.”

                    • SallyForth says:

                      Thanks – this one looks more my style! :) It’s pretty neat how all our avatars on PP change when we swap one out. Yes, keep looking around and try ’em out until you find one you like. And like you say, we can change like benev if we want to.
                      Ah! We’ve found a whole new way to entertain our PP buddies. :)

                  • SallyForth says:

                    benevelous, I like that nothing happens when I click your avatar either – where did you set it up?

                    • SallyForth says:

                      Cool, Calypso – and nothing happens when I click on it! How’d you do keep that from happening?

                    • Calypso says:

                      Sally, it’s involved. I gotta run, but I’ll try to post what I did right here later this evening.

                    • Calypso says:

                      Hey Sally!! Welcome to Club Avatar. These pics are small. You are a caped crusader riding a rearing, white steed, correct? Why does the horse’s head look like it’s wearing a mask, or something?

                      See Bene, I can doe some techie stuff right, even without going to GT (a nod to you, Lawton).

                    • SallyForth says:

                      Thanks, Calypso – seems you and I are partners in crime on this techie stuff. I surprised myself by figuring out how to get my knight and trusty steed avatar pic. That’s not a mask on the horse; it’s a shield on the knight’s arm on the other side of the horse’s head. You’re right, the pics are mighty small. We may cause PPers to get bifocals (or new ones).

                    • Calypso says:

                      Too late, I’ve had bifocals for 6-8 years, guess it’s time for some new ones. I see you changed your avatar pic too. I like your new one better. I think I’m going to keep searching for just the right one for me and then change them around as benevolous seems to like to do.

                    • SallyForth says:

                      ARGH! Calypso, I got so carried away with our avatar adventure that I responded to you in the wrong place. Please look at the post I did just above (I seem to have responded to my own self :-|)

                    • Calypso says:

                      Big Bird’s cool. But I think of more as an ‘Oscar the Grouch’ kinda guy. Or maybe one of those old guys in the balcony from the Muppets.

  4. ricstewart says:

    Anyone else hear Jan Jones say that Georgia has a higher dropout rate than “EVEN Mississippi” on APC roundtable yesterday?

    What would Georgians do without Mississippi to look down our noses at?

    • wicker says:

      At some point, especially in states like Georgia, we have to focus less on – while not totally abandoning – the folks at the bottom end of the academic achievement scale and start doing more for those at the top. We’ve spent the last two generations with the “No Child Left Behind” mentality trying to improve the performance of the underachievers while not doing nearly enough to challenge and reward the high achievers. We need more magnet schools, international baccalaureate programs, dual enrollment programs with colleges and trade schools (and I mean real dual enrollment programs, not the fake online stuff), etc. So many have allowed education to become another battleground for social activism that we have forgotten about the need to provide the best possible education to ALL students.

      And this is not just for the folks in Gwinnett, Forsyth, Cherokee and Paulding Counties. You want to improve the image of Clayton, Fulton and DeKalb County schools quickly? Start a bunch of schools and programs for the BEST students in those areas. Get someone to start charter schools, but have competitive admissions processes where they take the kids with the best grades and standardized test scores (or maybe they can create their own entrance exams) instead of being forced to take all comers.

      There really is only so much the state can do for kids who don’t value their own futures, and whose parents can’t or won’t discipline them. Sure, we can try to help those of them that can be helped, but we need to stop redirecting our resources and attention from the kids that are doing well to those that refuse to do well, and whose parents refuse to make them.

    • Scott65 says:

      Its funny because dropout rates can be highly deceiving. Check out the Frontline program on the PBS video site “Dropout Nation”. I was amazed at how schools can game the numbers to reduce the perceived number of dropouts to keep their funding (which I’m not sure that bonding that to funding is a good idea)

        • Baker says:

          It deserves a more thorough PP look than us plebes trying to put in a thread. Where are the resident dems eager to knock our state govt?

                • Scott65 says:

                  corruption knows no party…they just have parties, big ones (the corrupt ones of course)…paid for by lobbyists…ok, had ’nuff PP fun…back to work…got glass to cut

                    • Scott65 says:

                      An Asian yardman thats speaks Yiddish (hmmm is your quest to be “avatared” did you somehow disable the ability to reply to your comments? there is no reply button after your posts)…Actually an artist…glass being stained glass…

                    • Scott65 says:

                      lol…just re-read that comment…does sound sort of Confucius-like…but I assure you I am not asian (they make the cheap imported crap that breaks in a month)

                    • SallyForth says:

                      I don’t know about that missing “reply” thing, been wondering why it disappears when we get to this level on a thread.
                      But I’m loving your new hair doo, Scott.

                    • Calypso says:

                      Once a post is replied to so many times the ‘Reply’ feature goes away. Is your stained glass artistry you vocation, or your avocation? It’s a wonderful medium either way.

                      The Asian yardman *joke* was in reference to the ‘r’ and ‘l’ difficulty many Asians have in pronouncing some English words.

                    • Scott65 says:

                      I love Tracy Ullman…from the “Got Milk” campaign years ago…love the look on her face…like she is saying “really?”
                      …did I type (or not type) an R or L…?

                    • Scott65 says:

                      Its a love and vocation (and pays the bills most of the time)…stained glass mosaics as well…I’d post a link but shameless self promotion is frowned upon here (as it should be)

  5. Andre says:

    I’ve been following the Victor Hill case very closely. particularly as it relates to campaign finance, because a portion of this case centers around the use of campaign contributions.

    Two judges, United States Bankruptcy Judge C. Ray Mullins and Clayton County Superior Court Judge Albert Collier, have both ruled that Georgia law is vague as to who “owns” campaign contributions.

    Judge Mullins, in the bankruptcy proceedings of former state Representative Jill Chambers, wrote, “Georgia campaign finance law restricts use; it does not determine ownership.”

    Judge Collier, according to the Clayton News-Daily, wrote, “Georgia statutes do not establish ownership of those campaign funds.”

    The two judges, however, disagree on whether campaign funds are the personal assets of the candidate.

    Judge Collier says, “While the Georgia statutes do not establish ownership of those campaign funds, it clearly states they are not the personal assets of the candidate and the statute does not allow unfettered use of those funds.”

    Judge Mullins says, “The campaign funds are property of the estate pursuant to section 541 of the BankruptcyCode and Whiting Pools and its progeny.”

    We now have a situation where there is conflict.

    A federal judge trumped state law [O.C.G.A § 21-5-33(c)] when he ruled that campaign funds were the personal assets of the candidate and could be seized by creditors to satisfy debts in bankruptcy proceedings.

    A superior court judge has said campaign funds are not the personal assets of the candidate. Well, if campaign funds are not the personal assets of the candidate, then who owns the campaign funds?

    This question needs to be answered before we see a whole bunch of people walking into court claiming they did nothing wrong when they used campaign funds for personal use by citing Judge Mullins’ ruling and Judge Collier’s ruling in part.

    • John Walraven says:

      This is crazy. With 535 lawmakers in D.C. and 236 in Georgia, we ought to clean this up. Its hard enough to run for office and maintain that office already. Title 21 is likely to open up this Session & Georgia could provide some clarity, here. A campaign is an entity. The money belongs to the entity, not the person. If the person uses the entities’ money for themselves, they are ripe for a complaint at the CFC. So what’s the basis for a judge to figure that entities’ assets and liabilities into the person’s finances in a BK setting? Absurd.

      Lame duck session would be a great time to fix this in D.C.

      • John Walraven says:

        Having gained too many grey hairs from drafting in this code section, I would say no. Georgia law is not vague, here. Title 21 has several different entities that can be organized for electioneering purposes. Whatever your purpose, there’s a shoe that fits. For a judge to believe that the funds raised by any of these entities should somehow be permitted to be spent on a candidate’s personal expenses flies in the face of why these entities were codified to begin with. Such acts will open that person up to complaints leading to possible fines and other sanctions. To include these funds in any calculation of a person’s individual finances is a “swing and a miss”.

        • saltycracker says:

          Guess the judges missed the “definition of terms” as common sense or “what is the idea for” is not a legal position. Frustrating.

        • Andre says:

          As I wrote earlier, Judge Mullins invalidated 21-2-33 when he ruled campaign funds are personal assets of the candidate.

          For all intents and purposes, it is now legal for candidates to spend campaign cash for personal use. That’s one of the reasons why Victor Hill saw some of the charges against him dropped.

          If campaign cash is part of a candidate’s personal estate and personal assets, then it is impossible to steal from yourself.

          I agree this needs to be fixed, or else we’re going to see people solicit campaign contributions, use the money to pay off personal debts, then use the rulings of Judge Mullins and Judge Collier as a shield against prosecution.

  6. saltycracker says:

    Two Tea Party candidates from Cherokee are back in the news. One an unopposed candidate and the other, representing the accused, was defeated in the primary.

    Cherokee BOC Candidate Brian Poole is alleged to have outstanding tax obligations in the State of Alabama and with the IRS. He is represented by attorney Channing Ruskell. Legal responses and maneuverings are in process.

    I’ll stay the c(o)urse on my opinion on politicians with unpaid taxes. Should Mr. Poole have any unpaid taxes he should be ineligble to serve, if not on legal grounds, certainly on an ethical and common sense basis. _coverage_right_column

  7. Scott65 says:

    FYI note about the weather…TS Sandy is forming in the Western Caribbean…and it might make a play for FL and the east coast by end of week. If some of the models verify, it could be a real disaster for the midatlantic…so if you know anyone or own property in the area…keep an eye on the forecasts

    • saltycracker says:

      Not to worry, as it develops, the local media will have us in increasing panic mode for the umpteenth time this year.

      • Calypso says:

        I heard there might be a frost! Everyone to the milk and bread aisles! Get it before the hoarders do.

        • Scott65 says:

          I hope there isn’t frost…I’m not up to having to drag plants indoors, at least not yet…but just remember when the media whips into a frenzy…you heard it first here! (btw…Sandy is currently bombing out pressure down sub 960mb on last recon pass…thats L O W)

    • Charlie says:

      Watched it as well. Very interesting.

      One point about the way Colorado is doing this is worth noting. I wasn’t aware that each of the dispensaries must grow a minimum of 70% of their own product. The plants are tracked by bar code individually as they are grown & harvested. Thus, this isn’t just making the retail part of the industry legal but leaving the production to the same cartels who would otherwise already have a monopoly on this market (and who could likely be expected to keep it via violence). It seems much easier to regulate than I had thought.

  8. gopgal says:

    Buzz, The Tri-State Crematory film is not a documentary. At least the article you link does not indicate that it is. In fact, this line “tells the story from the perspective of a teenage boy who discovers a body in the woods” suggest the film is a fictionalized account of the true story.

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