Category: Open Thread

Happy Birthday Peach Pundit!

Strange and Weird Birthday Cakes Ever 2Ten years ago today, Clayton Wagar made this post, as he and Erick Erickson launched Peach Pundit. The post later turned into the first “thread of dreams” which almost crashed the server and forced the implementation of time limits to commenting on posts.

Over the years we’ve talked about Georgia politics and a whole lot more. Just when we thought we’d discovered Paul Broun really did get sworn in, we found it might have been in the wrong state. Some guy named “Icarus” missed his chance to meet Mitt Romney at the Varsity because he was too busy trying to build his own Buzz Brockway, while Mike has a name picked out if this blogging thing fails and he decides to get in to uh…movies. No doubt the Tanalach Media Conspiracy was involved in all these disasters.

It’s been a fun ten years. I look forward to many more. Happy Birthday to us!

Discuss this and whatever else is on your mind in this OPEN THREAD.

Championship Weekend Predictions And Open Thread

It’s Conference Championship weekend and as usual Atlanta in right in the thick of it. The SEC Championship is of course in our Capitol city but the game might not be as exciting as it normally is.

For Yellow Jacket fans like myself, we’re enjoying something we’re not all that used to: People are actually rooting for our football team. Sure, some are doing it because they don’t like Florida State’s QB but nevertheless, this is a big game for our program. So much so that if several things happen, Georgia Tech could find itself in the mix for the 4th spot in the new College Football Payoff. Here’s how that could happen:

1) #2 Oregon defeats #7 Arizona tonight, claims the Pac-12 Championship and retains their spot in the playoff.
2) #3 TCU defeats Iowa State tomorrow and claims a share of the Big-12 Championship and a spot in the playoff.
3) Tomorrow afternoon #1 Alabama defeats #16 Missouri to claim the SEC Championship and retain the top playoff spot.
4) #9 Kansas State knocks off #6 Baylor tomorrow night and shares the Big-12 Conference title with #3 TCU.
5) #13 Wisconsin knocks off #5 Ohio State and claims the B1G Championship.
6) #11 Georgia Tech knocks off #4 FSU and claims the ACC Championship.

None of those things are out of the question, which leave us with this possible scenario:

Three Conference Champions with 2 losses are considered for the 4th playoff spot: Kansas State, Georgia Tech and Wisconsin. What about #8 Michigan State and #10 Mississippi State? Well, they are not Conference champs, which the Selection Committee says is important and could cause those two teams to be jumped by K-State, GT, and Wisc.

I think the Selection Committee would then toss out Kansas State because #3 TCU defeated them 41-20 during the season and if you were going to have two teams from the same conference in the playoffs they’d be from the SEC, not the Big-12. So we’re left with GT and Wisconsin. They may very well pick Georgia Tech because Tech has a better strength of schedule and has defeated #19 Clemson, #9 Georgia, and #4 FSU in consecutive weeks. Wisconsin’s win over OSU would be (rather tragically) against OSU’s third string QB and perhaps not as impressive as GT’s win over FSU.

Implausible? Perhaps. Impossible? Not at all. In fact, I think it may very well happen.

Discuss this and anything else on your mind in this OPEN THREAD.

SnowJam and SOTU Open Thread

We’ve heard reports of people in metro Atlanta taking hours to get home in what is normally a short commute, due to the snow today. Governor Deal declared an emergency for the Peach State this afternoon. Over at the AJC, Greg Bluestein is reporting Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and Governor Deal’s response to the storm, especially after the 2011 snowfall that left state troopers escorting elected officials to the Capitol on the first day of the session, will be looked at closely.

In other news, President Obama will offer his State of the Union Address beginning at 9 PM. We expect to see lots of references to the middle class, the minimum wage and inequality.

Everybody has an opinion, and if you’ve made it home, you’re not going anywhere tonight, so you might as well vent. Feel free to contribute your thoughts on the storm or the SOTU in this open thread.

Politics and Journalism: This is Going to be Fun!

_MG_1422prcsdtim(2)As someone who has followed politics since I was a boy (I was kind of a weird kid), I’m thrilled to become part of the Peach Pundit team.

Politics and journalism combine two of my great passions (the other is sports, of all kinds).  I’ve been lucky enough to serve as a regular political analyst and commentator on several metro Atlanta radio stations since the 2002 elections, and have also been on C-SPAN and Prime Time Lawmakers (I have a better face for radio than TV).

Most recently I served as a regional editor for that great AOL experiment in local journalism known as Patch. Our coverage of the Brookhaven cityhood debate led all 900-plus Patch websites, across the nation, in readership and engagement. While the Patch initiative has experienced some rough spots in recent weeks, I’m proud of the service it provided to our  communities while I was there.

I also served as founding editor for the old Business to Business Magazine.

There are few things more boring than reading about someone else, so I’ll keep the rest of my introduction short: Georgia State University grad in political science; tons of experience in newspapers, magazines and websites; and the author of a couple of books (which are really good, BTW).

Thanks to everyone at Peach Pundit for giving me this great opportunity to become part of their team. Now, let’s have some fun!


Merry Christmas

From all of us here at Peach Pundit to all of you, we wish you a very Merry Christmas!

— Erick

The Gospel of Luke 2:1-20

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register.

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.


Championship Saturday Open Thread

It’s Championship Saturday and two teams are playing for more than just their Conference Title. I hope my Yellow Jackets can pull off a miracle and beat the Seminoles and I hope the Dawgs knock off the Tide and earn a spot in the National Championship against Notre Dame. Of course I can’t help but point out that Notre Dame is about to join the ACC (in everything but football but full membership will come soon enough), so I’ll claim them as a fellow ACC’er.

Discuss football in this Open Thread. Oh and if some of you out there are thinking about politics today…why? But you can talk about that too I suppose.

Late Breaking 2012 Georgia General Primary Election News Open Thread

We’re more than 24 hours away from the polls closing in the 2012 Georgia General Primary, and as such, there is a lot of news, rumors, and other delightful inside baseball tidbits that most folks like to gobble up.  Check back here for any late-breaking election news and feel free to post any sort of updates and interesting stories from the elections in your neck of the woods in the comments section.  I understand that we’re in the bottom of the ninth, but please remain cordial with each other…we’re monitoring the comments.  You’ve been warned.


Update from Representative Jay Neal’s campaign concerning anonymous mailings attacking him from an unregistered Political Action Committee:

Chickamauga, GA – July 30, 2012 – The reelection campaign of State Representative Jay Neal called on challenger Steve Tarvin to reveal what he knows about a negative mail piece House District 2 voters received in the days leading up to the primary election.

The negative mail piece says that it is “Paid for by Say No To Flip Flops” and attacks Representative Jay Neal who faces Tarvin in tomorrow’s Republican primary election. The mailer was sent from the same mail house that has done previous mailers for Steve Tarvin’s Campaign – Permit #96 out of Kennesaw, GA.

A review of the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission (formerly known as the State Ethics Commission) does not list the organization credited with paying for the piece as registered, as political organizations in Georgia are required to do. This latest mailer is the third instance of an anonymous or unregistered negative political mail directed against Representative Neal.

Representative Neal commented on the piece “My political opponents are free to criticize me and send out negative information about me if they choose, but they should at least have the courage to put their own name on their negative mail instead of hiding behind fabricated or unregistered political organizations.”

The Neal campaign is offering Tarvin’s campaign the opportunity to disclose whether or not his campaign, or anyone affiliated with his campaign, was behind this negative mail piece and why it was paid for by a political organization that is not registered as required by state law.

What keeps you honest? (an Open Thread)

Ah, the corporate expense report – the bane of every professional traveler’s end of trip paperwork. You need (and are owed) the reimbursement, but man, what a PITA.  Don’t you think you deserve just a little more than the policy allows because you give so much of your personal time to the company?  It’s not dinner, golf, a sports outing.  When you’re trying to close a deal, it’s WORK.  Those are extra hours you’re putting in – practically for free.  You could be spending the time with your family.  You always go above and beyond what’s required of your job.  A little extra here and there is only fair. Dare I say – it’s only right.

So, do you do it? If you can submit up to $25 without a receipt and you only had a $3.79 cup of coffee, how much do you put in the expense report box?  Does the company policy and threat of being fired influence the amount you put in the box?

Read more

Morning Reads: May 1, 2012

Happy International Workers’ Day!

Occupy Atlanta plans a protest at Troy Davis Park at 10:30 AM. As you’ll recall the Occupy crowd renamed Woodruff Park after the convicted and recently executed cop-killer.

At least this group plans to clean up after themselves when they’re done protesting at the Capitol today.

Here’s a full schedule of all the fun-filled May Day festivities.

If marching is not your style, you can join your Occupy comrades at a screening of the movie “Koch Brothers Exposed” tonight at 7:30 PM.

Last week George Chidi penned a lengthy “Dear Occupy” letter and left the group. Others decided not to follow George out the door.

Other Georgia Reads

Doug Richards rememberd 4.30.92 when things got got nasty in the wake of the Rodney King ruling.

Andre over at Georgia Unfiltered has caused no small stir by uncovering Rashad Richey’s alleged brushes with the law. Richey is the Political Director for the Georgia Democratic Party. Democrats have pushed back, and speculation abounds about Richey’s lawyer even threatening  taking legal action. Georgia Progress, formerly “gapolitico” formerly “galiberal” quotes scriptures in their defense of Richey.

More on the vote by a citizens review panel against commercial flights at Briscoe Field in Gwinnett.

National Reads

One year ago today Osama bin Laden was killed.

The Obama campaign released a web ad praising the President’s decision to raid bin Laden’s compound and claiming Romney would have let bin Laden live. Navy SEALs criticize the President for playing politics with the issue.

President Obama’s new campaign slogan “Forward” has an interesting history as a political slogan.

We knew Ron Paul was staying in the race until the convention, but he said yesterday that he might not support Mitt Romney against President Obama. Is anyone really surprised?

Other Reads

The Gwinnett Braves have a 4.5 game lead in the International League’s South division.

The Big Braves lost to the Pirates yesterday but are still playing well and only a half game behind the Nats.

The Celtics’ Rajon Rondo won’t be playing in game 2 tonight of their first round matchup against the Hawks. Apparently bumping the Ref will get you in some trouble. The Hawks look to take a commanding 2-0 lead over the old and whiny Celtics.

Here’s a gorgeous slam by Marvin Williams Sunday night.

Friday Ron Paul Video Game Open Thread

A Ron Paul fan has turned the Congressman and Presidential Candidate into a video-game action hero. Using the crowd-funding source Kickstarter, Daniel Williams has raised $8,368 to bring his game to market.

The goal of the game is for Paul to become the President of the United States and shut down the Federal Reserve. In the game you play as Paul, who has to go through all 50 states to collect gold and delegates.

Feel free to discuss this or anything else on your mind in this Open Thread.

Happy Birthday Saba

Today is the birthday of front page contributor Saba Long.  We will not ask how old she is, but she’s still younger than most of us.  Poor girl has lived her entire life with her birthday being overshadowed by a groundhog. That ain’t right. So say hello and wish Saba a happy Groundhog birthday.

And, of course, OPEN THREAD.

Friday Open Thread

It’s a Conference Championship Weekend. Will UGA beat LSU? Jeff Shultz thinks not. Who will win in the ACC? Clemson or VT?

315,000 left the workforce and unemployement fell to 8.6%. Wait, what?

The final playoff spot is up for grabs this weekend in the Peach Pundit football league. The Head Shrinkers have the inside track even though I cruelly defeated him by less than a point last week.

Discuss these things, or anything else on your mind in this Open Thread.