Author: Pete Randall

Pete Randall is a dude in Georgia.

Georgia bank closures. Anyone shocked?

As consistent as the sun rising in the morning, state Senator Vincent Fort being perpetually outraged on a day ending in ‘y’, or Georgia Senate Republicans making themselves look foolish, is a week with at least one Georgia bank closing.

This week, Clarkesville-based Habersham Bank, founded in 1904 in the North Georgia mountains, was seized and sold to SCBT of Orangeburg, South Carolina. Citizens Bank of Effingham in Springfield, near Savannah, was acquired by Albany’s HeritageBank of the South.

The 2011 total for Georgia now stands at six. More details here.

Nathan Deal quickly learning how to grow state government

Still discovering “how big state government really is,” Georgia’s Governor, Nathan Deal (R- Eally Loves Spending) has shown an inventive way of cutting state government by…expanding his staff? Wait, that can’t be right. Roll the tape!

There are 10 more employees in Deal’s office compared with the final months of Perdue’s administration, and top-tier salaries have increased. Eight people in Deal’s office are making more than $100,000, compared with three in the previous administration.

Overall payroll in Deal’s executive office stands at $3.32 million for 72 employees, compared with the $2.62 million payroll for 62 employees in Perdue’s office on Election Day in 2010, records obtained through Georgia’s Open Records Act show.

Welcome to the new norm. Oh, and we’re still screwed.

Judge B.J. Mobley resigns as DeKalb County’s experiment in stupidity continues to yield horrific results

As I said back on May 26 concerning DeKalb State Court Judge B.J. Mobley, “many of Georgia’s jurists think they are invincible…until they are caught in the midst of their impropriety.” Mobley, who was previously criticized for lavishly spending tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars annually on her travel and cell phone bills, accused of running her re-election campaign out of her own taxpayer funded office, and who had the longest delays in handling pending cases of any of her peers, has announced she will be resigning effective this Friday, according to two tipsters writing into the Tip Line.

Mobley, through a sheer coincidence that I’m sure has absolutely nothing to do with her decision, is under investigation by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation that she had an investigator from the DeKalb Solicitor’s Office run tags through the state’s criminal information system.

Judge Barbara Mobley’s last day will be Friday, her attorney Jackie Patterson told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Patterson declined to talk about why Mobley was stepping down, but confirmed that she had reached an agreement with the state’s Judicial Qualifications Commission.

Which will end the JQC’s investigation. Because that is how they roll. The GBI, on the other hand, should not halt their investigation of B.J. Mobley. Because who, exactly, were these alleged background checks being run on? Elected officials? Her enemies? Normal citizens? You? It matters.

Andrew Breitbart keeps Sanford Bishop in the crosshairs

Yeah, yeah. In the crosshairs. It’s a metaphor, people. Culture of civility be damned! Ha!

Anyway, Andrew Breitbart has been on a tear of late against Georgia Democratic Congressman Sanford Bishop who loves to give taxpayer funded scholarships to his own family and seems to have other family members who love collecting as many public salaries as possible.

Breitbart continues to focus on Bishop’s alleged collusion in corruption related to the Pigford v. Glickman settlement. Sure, Old AJC Guy likes to minimize it as “pretty thin gruel” (because that’s what a biased AJC reporter does, you see). But now Breitbart has put together some TV ads for Bishop’s home district that he is collecting funds to air. Here’s the main ad:

Breitbart’s position: “I am committed to getting justice for the bona fide black farmers who faced government sponsored discrimination and land loss. These American heroes were betrayed by the so-called ‘black leadership’ like the Congressional Black Caucus, who sold them out at every opportunity. CBC member Sanford Bishop is a perfect example of the back stabbing that these men have faced.”

With conversations in D.C. about the initiation of investigations into Pigford, it remains to be seen if Sanford Bishop will ever actually address the (sorry Old AJC Guy) serious allegations being levied against him from actual victims of discrimination.

Town drunks rejoice! The Georgia State Senate is on the way with help.

Otis Campbell breathlessly writes in this evening between shots of Old Crow to inform the Peach Pundit Executive Committee the day our kidneys will forever regret has arrived: the beginning of the end of the absurd ban on Sunday sales of alcohol in stores. ‘Tis true, my friends. Feast your eyes on SB 10, sponsored by six lovers of local responsibility and proofread by Ben Harbin between jello shots with Kiki and Bambi lobbyists concerned citizens.

This time, Georgia’s Governor says he’ll sign the legislation if it lands on his desk.

Hell Storm 2011 Open Thread

As North Georgia braces for the beginning of the end, enjoy this afternoon and be with the ones you love. Me, I’ll have a bottle of bourbon in one hand and a pistol in the other, waiting for snow zombies to rise up as the entire region loses their mind and state Senator Robert Brown (D-Moron) wakes tomorrow to find a “white sheet” of snow in the corner of everyone’s yard, thus proving his mindless ramblings.

Here’s a live webcam view from the Peach Pundit Command Bunker in Atlanta of the horror as it unfolds:

Also check here for a developing list of closures in the region and consider this an OPEN THREAD. Courage, my friends.

Sonny gets one right for a change

I’ve made no secret of the fact that Governor Doofus I, during the last eight years, has been a solid disappointment in just about every conceivable way. But in the waning moments of his administration, before he heads home to reap the rewards of millions of dollars of state spending he has steered his way, he’s made a fantastic appointment that has real impact on people. Indeed, Doofus I has appointed Sherry Boston (pictured, right) as the Solicitor-General for DeKalb County. While admittedly he’s appointed a Democrat (let’s be honest, though: he’s always been one himself), he has placed in a critically important role for public safety in one of our most populous counties someone who highly skilled and will ensure that over 15,000 cases a year are appropriately and speedily handled. Well done and good luck to Ms. Boston.

The only downside of this appointment is that the acting Solicitor-General, Nicole Marshand, now won’t be around anymore to show us her mad skillz.

Nicole (bumping and grinding, at left), you see, is a former stripper Atlanta Falcons Cheerleader who loved to strut her stuff half naked in front of thousands all while being a crimes against children prosecutor and later as the Chief Assistant Solicitor in DeKalb. She also is an incompetent without peer.

Alas, I suppose in 2011 we must actually have competence over someone who can bust a move.

For once, Sonny, you did something right. Now, don’t let the door hit in you in the rear.

And to you single guys: Yes, Marchand is available. She even sits for interviews on national television where she whines about her inability to find a man. Check below the fold for her interview and to see if you are her kind of guy.

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Georgia Power: You’ll take our rate hike and like it!

Critics assailed [Georgia Power President and CEO W. Paul] Bowers’ company for raising rates during an economic downturn that pushed unemployment to 10.1 percent, although Bowers said his firm invested billions of dollars in its business even in a sour economy.

“We didn’t stop it because our customers expect the lights to stay on, they expect us to be compliant with environmental law and they want us to have power for the growth of the future,” Bowers said.

Last month, Georgia’s utility regulators at the Public Service Commission approved a settlement that not only hiked bills, but also gave Bowers’ company the ability to more quickly raise prices should its earnings fall below set targets. Normally, Georgia Power must file a new case with the commission to raise rates, a process that takes months, involves testimony, analysts and a greater say for critics.

When asked, Bowers said he could not rule out another price increase before the current settlement expires in 2014, particularly if Georgia suffers another deep recession.

“I hope not,” Bowers said. “You know, you never know.”

More here.

The legal argument against ObamaCare from one of Georgia’s warriors in the fight

Mercer University School of Law Professor David Oedel is just about what you’d expect from that hilltop bastion of intolerance and liberalism (but I repeat myself) down in Georgia’s bellybutton. Oedel loves The One, his BFF is failed (and now former) Congressman Jim Marshall, and I’m told he has an Erick Erickson dart board up in is office.

Imagine my surprise to learn last week, then, that David Oedel is one of our oh so very special attorneys general for Georgia in the 20-state health care legislation to, you know, restore freedom and the supremacy of the Constitution…i.e., fight ObamaCare. He had a rather fascinating piece in the Wall Street Journal on December 27 about another argument against the legislation.

The conclusion is clear. So long as Congress insists on threatening the taxpayers of any state that withdraws from Medicaid by sending their tax money to the other states—and, in the process, depriving them of the funds needed to assist their poorest citizens—federal courts should follow Dole and rule that the new Medicaid requirements are unconstitutional.

The whole piece is here.

Thank our other non-Conservative Senator, Johnny Isakson, for leaving Georgia more at risk

You’re a peach, Johnny! He’s all proud and happy to announce that he is going to vote for the START Treaty in the Senate.

“Only through setting the example, without giving in or capitulating a thing, do we give hope to the future that my grandchildren and yours can live in a world that will not be free of nukes but will be secure; that loose nukes are not in the hands of bad people; and we have transparency and accountability while still having the capability to secure ourselves both offensively and defensively to ensure the security of the people of the United States of America.”

Next time you see him, be sure to thank him for supporting a treaty which will, per NRO’s Richard Perle and Kim R. Holmes, “encumber our freedom to deploy ballistic-missile defenses, squander the negotiating leverage needed to bring Russian shorter-range missiles under control, and reduce verification standards in this and probably future such agreements.” And also ask him why this wonderful treaty leave tactical nuclear weapons completely uncontrolled. And check out this article for much more on why your allegedly conservative senator wants to leave his home state in more peril, rather than less, from nuclear weapons.

Senator Chambliss, one more question

There have been many comments in several posts about this today and I believe it’s worth moving to the front page. Here is Senator Saxby Chambliss precisely one month ago:

“I have consistently voted for the elimination of earmarks in the past and will support the earmark-moratorium resolution today.

And here he is today:

I recently voted in support of an earmark moratorium to help reduce federal spending in the next Congress. As I have previously stated, while this is not the answer to our budget woes, it is a good start.

Why, then, Senator, do you personally have 42 earmarks in the Omnibus Spending Bill?

And if you think the Omnibus Spending Bill “simply spends too much,” does that include your own pet projects? If so, why did you promote them to begin with? If not, isn’t that a violation of your own alleged position against pork spending?

Saxby Chambliss responds to charges he isn’t a conservative leader by showing he isn’t a conservative leader

Earlier I made some salient remarks concerning Saxby Chambliss and his two-faced positions on pork spending and on how he fears being anything but a backbencher. Behold Saxby’s words on the Omnibus Spending Bill, via Press Secretary Ashley Nelson, received into the Peach Pundit Command Center a few hours ago:

On Nov. 2, the American people made it clear that they want Congress to rein in spending. I recently voted in support of an earmark moratorium to help reduce federal spending in the next Congress. As I have previously stated, while this is not the answer to our budget woes, it is a good start. Even though the Omnibus Appropriations Act falls under this Congress and is not covered by the moratorium, and even though it contains items that will benefit Georgia, it simply spends too much. I intend to vote against it.

It. Simply. Spends. Too. Much. Give me a break. This from the man who supports massive pork spending attached to the tax bill which passed this afternoon, who also voted for TARP, and who believes that billions should be spent so the First Lady can have a salad bar in every elementary school in the Republic.

To Saxby, he thinks he has done his job and can go home simply because he announces he is against something. But that is not leadership.

Why is it I seem to hear the name Jim DeMint every time real conservatives, you know, employ strategy and try to fight the never ending spending and increasing of government control? And has anyone ever –EVER– read a bunch of stories about how Jim DeMint and Saxby Chambliss are teaming up to fight fight fight for conservatism, more liberty, and less government control?

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Action talks and Saxby Chambliss walks

Last night Georgia’s allegedly conservative Senator, Saxby Chambliss, said on the Senate floor, “America’s fiscal house is in disarray. Our budget process is broken. And future generations will end up paying the price if we continue to ignore the difficult decisions required to fix this grave threat to our country’s financial stability.” He went on to say, concerning these problems, that “we’ve got to address it next year.” Next year? Swell.

But what have Saxby’s actions shown him to be? In typical fashion, in favor of continuing the big spending. He wet his pants with joy over the massive spending bill, which we can’t afford, to inject the Federal government into every school lunch room in the nation. He’s all gung ho for continuing unemployment benefits, which we can’t afford, for the rest of peoples lives if need be.

And now there is an Omnibus Spending Bill on the floor of the Senate that is 1,924 pages long which will cost $1.25 trillion and includes 6,488 earmarks. Where, pray tell, is Georgia’s Senior Senator? At 12:21 p.m EST, he was having a gay old time on the floor of the Senate, yucking it up with his colleagues as they considered amendments to yet another massive piece of pork filled legislation in order to let the people that actually pay income tax keep their rates the same for two more years.

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