Morning Reads for Thursday, November 29

November 29, 2012 7:00 am

by Bridget Cantrell · 50 comments

Did anyone win the Powerball?!?  If so – I’m free for lunch today ;)  Lots happening here and there in the news.  Something big must be happening that we’re supposed to be distracted from…

Georgia

Inter/national

Whatevs

So you think you can Google?  Play A Google a Day.  It gives you a question and you race to Google the correct answer.  It’s fairly evil.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 7:59 am

Big pimpin’? Come on Bridget, you’re better than early 90s misogynistic rap lingo.

At some point, somebody has to tell Mayor Reed that if he wants something to happen in this reddest of red states, the last thing that he should do is talk about, promote and take a leadership role on it. Instead, he should work quietly behind the scenes, and better yet see if he can get a prominent GOPer to be public spokesman for the project.

Bob Loblaw November 29, 2012 at 9:29 am

Big Pimpin is phat. I dig it.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 10:21 am

“Phat”? Late (though very late) 80s. “Dig it”? More like early 70s. But references to the exploitation of women should always be out of style, especially in the Atlanta metro area where it is a huge problem that not nearly enough is being done to address. (One of the people in DeKalb County who was in charge of fighting that issue was also an Atlanta Falcons’ cheerleader. Pete Randall was the one who exposed that. Whatever happened to him? He used to write good stuff.)

Bob Loblaw November 29, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Thanks for picking up the irony of backtracking decades of slang. However, I didn’t see the exploitation reference. Wasn’t intended.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 12:29 pm

Pimp = prostitution. Huge problem, especially in the Atlanta area, of women, especially minors, being prostituted against their will, which is a form of both slavery and rape. Hence the exploitation reference. Incidentally, much of hip-hop slang is based on things that aren’t particularly socially redeeming. And this is coming from someone who spent a good deal of his life immersed in hip hop culture.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 8:00 am

Turns out the kid who was murdered by a gun-wielding criminal in Jacksonville – who resorted to the typical “I felt threatened … I thought he had a gun … stand your ground” defense was from Marietta.

http://mdjonline.com/view/full_story/20967351/article-Marietta-teen-shot-to-death-in-Florida?instance=home_top_bullets

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 8:01 am

Don’t get me wrong … Stand Your Ground is a good law. We just can’t let criminals like this abuse it.

mountainpass November 29, 2012 at 9:25 am

Don’t worry a_a waiting a day to report it gets him.

saltycracker November 29, 2012 at 9:44 am

Local stories of the shooting are along the lines of a guy at a filling station headed home from a wedding, not liking loud music from a nearby car, the kids in the car pointing a shotgun at him, he shoots, they drive off, he shoots some more, he drives to South Florida. He was found from witnesses getting his tag number.

Retreating a few hundred miles & not standing his ground until the cops come isn’t going to play well to a jury if it gets down to he said/they said.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 10:10 am

“the kids in the car pointing a shotgun at him”

Pardon me, but that is 100% false. It has been debunked by witnesses and the police.

saltycracker November 29, 2012 at 3:49 pm

The story will continue to morph in the press as standard but I imagine we agree this appears (evidenced by leaving town) had less to do about stand your ground and more about disconnected rage by a bad guy.

Ed November 29, 2012 at 8:15 am

I’m not saying I won the lottery last night but my assets grew by multiple million orders of magnitude about 12 hours ago.

Another page in the “Don’t Believe Everything You Read” book. Kim Jong Un named sexiest man alive. As I am actually the sexiest man alive I take umbrage with The Onion’s reporting.

jbgotcha November 29, 2012 at 8:17 am

WSBTV is reporting that Gov. Deal supports the idea of a new $1B stadium for the Falcons. I’m sure he’s got a contractor who used to be his chauffeur waiting to benefit from the construction contract. We do not need a new stadium, especially if it is being funded on the backs of taxpayers.

Ed November 29, 2012 at 8:42 am

Sort of. He hasn’t actually endorsed the plan, he said he needs to see if $300m in motel tax revenue is feasible first, and that Georgia “as a whole” needs to be convinced of the need.

He did however give a very detailed explanation of what GWCC authorities would need to say whilst making their pitch.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 9:25 am

@jbgotcha:

This is an honest query, not flaming, trolling or setting you up. A lot of people seem to be taking the position that the $300 million is coming from “general fund” type of taxes i.e. sales taxes, income taxes, property taxes etc. that can either be redirected towards something that is more worthy or better yet (if you are a fiscal conservative) cut and returned to the taxpayer. This is not the case. The hotel/motel tax can’t be spent on education, transportation, public safety, etc. but can only be spent on a limited range of projects. And you really can’t eliminate or reduce it because only a portion of the tax will be spent on the new stadium. Most of the tax revenue will be spent on maintaining existing GWCC facilities. I guess you COULD try to reduce taxes only by the amount needed for this project, but it would only be for the purposes of spiting this project, not for any other economic, political or philosophical reason.

So, A) the tax exists because it is necessary
B) the revenue from the tax can only be spent on things related to the GWCC
add those up and C) if the money is not spent on this stadium or something similar, the money will basically go unspent. You can’t even put the money into reserves, because by law it can’t be used for the city’s reserves.

UNLESS someone comes up with another idea that is within the scope of the current GWCC hotel/motel tax law that is better and more worthy than this. Anyone has any ideas? If you have them, go ahead and present them. What are those ideas, and how will they actually advance the mission of the GWCC and justify the existence of a tax that quite frankly does need to exist?

I think that it is a question that is a lot more difficult to answer than simply saying “I oppose using tax dollars for this!” If you do, then exactly what do you support using this particular GWCC hotel/motel tax for?

And now going back to my bomb-throwing flaming trolling mode: is there anything that anyone in this state supports using taxpayer money for other than highways? Is that the only justifiable use of taxpayer dollars?

Bob Loblaw November 29, 2012 at 9:30 am

This is local legislation. Got a beef with how Dougherty Co. wants to spend it’s hotel-motel taxes? Glynn Co.? Why is it that Fulton Co. can’t tax hotel guests to pay for a stadium in its own county?

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 10:17 am

Charlie debunked that angle already. The issue isn’t Fulton getting to choose how it spends its tax revenue. They can … up to $200 million. They only need permission from the state to spend the $300 million. Even if the state rejects this, GWCC will still pay the $200 million for the new stadium, and the city will just find some other way to get the remaining $100 million.

But this is all tilting at windmills. Deal is a GOPer, but he is also a believer in using infrastructure to drive the economy. (Which the GOP itself believed until they went off the neocon deep end.) He is just hamstrung by wanting to avoid a primary challenge in 2014, and of course the economy. After winning re-election and the economy improves, we are going to see Deal start pushing a ton of infrastructure projects, with this being only one. And yes, that includes projects where he will work with Reed.

This stadium thing will pass. The Democrats – who actually can publicly admit to understanding the hotel/motel tax issue – will vote for it en masse, and it will be the job of the GOP whips to figure out which of their senators and congressmen will be able to politically handle voting yes, and the rest will make a grand meaningless show of voting no for the folks back home. It will pass by a narrow margin, but the outcome will be predetermined.

The Last Democrat in Georgia November 29, 2012 at 1:22 pm

“After winning re-election and the economy improves, we are going to see Deal start pushing a ton of infrastructure projects, with this being only one.”

You mean after Deal wins re-election IF he survives a primary challenge from his right, which after going along with Perdue’s residual transportation policy disasters in the I-85 HOT Lanes debacle (to which Deal did nothing to stop beforehand even though the state knew that it would be a disaster before opening the lanes) and the T-SPLOST disaster (which Deal along went along with and even gave his endorsement to late in a desperate, misguided and ill-advised attempt to avoid the building political massacre that happened on July 31st) is not necessarily a sure thing in this volatile political environment in which Republican voters in the party’s most reliable stronghold in the state (Gwinnett) are ambivalent towards him over said HOT Lanes mess.

Charlie November 29, 2012 at 1:45 pm

122 words. 1 sentence. That should be impressive, but…not so much.

The Last Democrat in Georgia November 29, 2012 at 3:08 pm

But it is impressive, you’re just not looking at it the right way.

saltycracker November 29, 2012 at 10:22 pm

It was what we expect of our transportation expert, a straight fast commute with no stops. If Charlie really wanted sophisticated dialogue he’d put in modify, spell check, font choices, thesaurus….and unload most of us.

I even saw a regular smarty pants spell privilege with a “d” today.

The Last Democrat in Georgia November 29, 2012 at 11:50 pm

Oh, don’t be mistaken. I’m not a transportation expert, but I did sleep at a Holiday Inn Express last night :)

The Last Democrat in Georgia November 29, 2012 at 11:52 pm

“a straight fast commute with no stops”

…Something that most Atlantans can only dream of these days.

Bob Loblaw November 29, 2012 at 9:33 am

So Cobb County reduced taxes and decided against a water bill increase?

Hey Debbie! Didn’t you and your “party” say re-electing Tim Lee would result in more tax increases? Guess that one didn’t pan out.

Thank heavens we don’t have that psychopath Byrne as Chairman.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 9:45 am

My only problem with Byrne is that he left Cobb, ran for office in his new county and trashed Cobb when he did it. It was only when he couldn’t get elected in his new county by denouncing his old one that he tried to return to Cobb politics and in the process pretended as if his failed attempt to remake himself in another area never happened.

As far as Byrne’s right wing extremism, that will become a problem for me when it is for the left. You have lots of very far left wing radical outside the mainstream types holding powerful offices in this country, and the media never talks about it, or treats it as a bad thing. (For example, the only thing that got Cynthia McKinney in trouble with the media was when she said something that was actually true!) So long as Byrne’s counterparts on the left are able to get elected, then guys like that on the right should be able to as well.

Bob Loblaw November 29, 2012 at 12:14 pm

Actually, McKinney got in trouble with the media and everyone else when she pushed a police officer out of her way and proceeded through a checkpoint without authorization. Embarrassed Georgia.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 12:32 pm

No, her comments on the Iraq War profiteering by people connected to the Bush family was what got her into trouble. Granted, it did contain some 9/11 Truther stuff in it that was specious, but the main thing is that she said those things at a time when the country wasn’t ready to hear it. The irony is that the left picked up on it a few years later, i.e. the Blackwater scandal, but even they didn’t defend McKinney at the time. The incident with the police officer only became a huge scandal because she was already known from the previous scandal. Otherwise it is nothing more than a 2 day news story.

View from Brookhaven November 29, 2012 at 8:30 am

That’s a lot o’ links.

Thanks, Bridget.

Spacey G November 29, 2012 at 10:27 am

Indeed. I might break a mouse clicking-on all these links. Thanks Bridget! That’s a lot of work, compiling such an exhaustive, “live” news roundup. One-stop holiday news shopping! Between you and Erick’s exhaustive R-finger-pointing to that hot spot of concrete (physical space and thinking) in VA I feel fully informed… at a glance and all before noon.

Now if you will just add pictures and make a nicer layout/presentation you’ll be the Newser of Georgia. (http://www.newser.com/)

Neither here nor there, just random thoughts from my head (which is a priviledge for you cats here I realize), but other than my own personal brand’s “Be the media you wish to see” tagline, Newser’s “Read Less Know More” is also one of my fave tag lines.

Noway November 29, 2012 at 8:51 am

Sounds like British millionaires are “Shrugging.” Good for them. Hope it comes across the pond soon.

saltycracker November 29, 2012 at 9:23 am

I’d seriously doubt 2/3rds of British miilionaires left over the tax rate. It is more likely the percentage that can “adjust” their income accordingly.

Our tax code is much more complex and works just fine for those on both ends of the bell curve.
Not so good for those getting most of their revenue reported by W-2′s & 1099′s and absent some “strategies”.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 9:35 am

I wish that fiscal conservatives (well fiscal conservatives other than Ben Stein anyway) would stop pretending as if the history of the world – or even the history of US taxation – didn’t begin with Reagan reducing taxes in the early 80s. Or that raising taxes to the Clinton rates – back when the economy was, er, pretty good I think – would turn us into Greece.

Low tax rates, the high national debt, and budget busting social programs are 3 different arguments. (Actually it is 4 or 5, because now we have the expectation of not only an expansive welfare state, but the idea that we shouldn’t have to pay for it! We love deficit spending, and no it is not just the Obama voters!) They should be argued separately. If doing something of substance about the national debt is a serious enough problem, then we ought to be willing to raise taxes to get it done. The supply side arguments – cutting taxes increases revenue – doesn’t work because cutting taxes only increases revenue for a short time, 3-5 years. It will take a long sustained effort of 20 years or more to get the national debt under control. And I don’t want to hear anything about spending cuts from the party that never actually makes those cuts when they are in power. Didn’t under Reagan, didn’t under Gingrich and didn’t under Bush.

benevolus November 29, 2012 at 10:25 am

Social Security is self funded.
Medicare needs to be addressed. No one will argue with that.
But the deficits right now are being caused by previous tax cuts, 2 wars, Medicare Part D not being paid for (and a financial meltdown whose causes are disputed). These are really all Republican problems. Republicans own them. Republicans need to face the music and fix them. There is no “leverage”. Boehner using the debt ceiling as “leverage” against Obama is like trying to blame the dog for your own fart. Obama isn’t spending any money that Congress hasn’t authorized. The debt limit problem is all Congress’s. Obama has nothing to do with it!

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 10:31 am

@benevolus:

I look at the national debt, not merely the deficit. With the deficit it is easier to play political football by blaming one party or the other for contributing more or less to the short term budget problem. But taking on the national debt means acknowledging that the long term tax and spending policies are to blame, and that both need to change their long term tax and spending priorities in order to fix them.

And while I am not necessarily one of those ObamaCare baiters, Medicare is bad, but ObamaCare just makes the problem of fixing MediCare worse. And the Democrats knew that when they passed ObamaCare. Just like how Democrats know that implementing cap and trade to address global warming will cost trillions. Which goes back to how it is a bipartisan problem.

benevolus November 29, 2012 at 11:11 am

I don’t think Obamacare has caused any debts or deficits yet. If/when it does, sure let’s talk about it.
I would just as soon be non-partisan about it because it’ s just problems that need to be solved. But if we don’t even acknowledge the problems we’ll never fix them.

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 12:36 pm

I hasn’t yet but it will, and its existence makes long term fiscal planning on MediCare and other budget issues that much harder, especially since no one has any idea of how the scope of ObamaCare is going to grow, and the unintended effects ObamaCare is going to have on the health care industry, the government and the larger economy. Being serious about paying down the national debt would have meant addressing that first and then putting in some form of universal healthcare later. But the Democrats had a Democratic president, a large majority in both houses of Congress and took advantage of what was really going to be their only shot to pull a score like that, and decided that they would take on the budget AFTER winning health care, even though health care was only going to add to the budget problem. And that is what made health care different from, say, TARP or the stimulus, which were done to keep us from falling into another great depression (except worse this time).

John Konop November 29, 2012 at 10:05 am

Pat Robertson has now embraced science and decriminalizing pot, who would of thought?

………..Televangelist Pat Robertson says that radiocarbon dating proves that the Earth is older than 6,000 years — and he’s telling Christians not to “cover it up.”

On Tuesday’s 700 Club, a viewer wrote Robertson that her “biggest fear is to not have my children and husband next to me in God’s Kingdom” because they question why the Bible could not explain the existence of dinosaurs.

“Look, I know that people will probably try to lynch me when I say this, but Bishop [James] Ussher wasn’t inspired by the Lord when he said that it all took 6,000 years,” the TV preacher explained. “It just didn’t. You go back in time, you’ve got radiocarbon dating. You got all these things and you’ve got the caucuses of dinosaurs frozen in time out in the Dakotas.”………..

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/11/27/robertson-tells-christians-radiocarbon-dating-proves-no-dinosaurs-on-noahs-ark/

John Vestal November 29, 2012 at 10:19 am

Will the upcoming Robertson-Broun “Pit of Hell” cage match by free or PPV?

John Konop November 29, 2012 at 10:45 am

lol

atlanta_advocate November 29, 2012 at 10:27 am

The Nazi Party embraced science too. Especially eugenics. So did Margaret Sanger by the way.

xdog November 29, 2012 at 1:54 pm

Well that settles it.

Charlie November 29, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Damn. Godwins Law on the Morning Reads. Don’t see that every day.

Ed November 29, 2012 at 2:34 pm

Is that a challenge?

saltycracker November 29, 2012 at 4:11 pm

“caucuses of dinosaurs” ….Caucuses are new to the Dakotas which started as Republicans in the late 1800′s and we know what dinosaurs are a euphemism for.
Proving Robertson is wrong and has sold out Republicans !

Joshua Morris November 29, 2012 at 1:58 pm

If only Tech could channel some of that solar research money to the GTAA to go ahead and replace the football coach. That would be super.

mountainpass November 29, 2012 at 2:18 pm

Hey he got them to the ACC title game.

analogkid November 29, 2012 at 6:17 pm

No. Miami did.

John Vestal November 29, 2012 at 8:45 pm

Yup…just like Ohio State is getting the SEC back to the BCSCG.

saltycracker November 29, 2012 at 4:51 pm

A friend had a question when in San Franciso this week: Why does it seem like every bum in the parks has a dog ?

Being a magnet city for the homeless and leading a cause to end euthanzation of animals they have developed a program. Pay panhandlers $75 a week to adopt a dog. Of course there are conditions but they are hard to administer.

Being skeptical I looked it up – yelp !
http://content.usatoday.com/communities/ondeadline/post/2012/06/san-francisco-to-pay-panhandlers-to-foster-problem-dogs/1

SallyForth November 29, 2012 at 6:53 pm

In one of my post-election rants, I put lipstick on the elephant in the room that our nation seems to prefer to ignore. Imagine my surprise to see the Wall Street Journal article today with Henninger pointing out some of those very concerns. I don’t know what to do about the problem, but I do know that we have to acknowledge it exists before we can address it. Here’s a place to begin:
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324205404578147360260072602.html

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