Friday, March 25, 2011

The Governor Is In Town

Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam is in Jefferson County tonight:

The 2011 Jefferson County Lincoln/Reagan Day Dinner will be held tonight at Stokely Memorial Cafeteria on the campus of Carson-Newman College. It will be Governor Haslam's only party fundraising dinner appearance in East Tennessee this year. The doors open at 6:30pm, and dinner is at 7:00pm.

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Road To Nowhere?

Simply throwing bad words out there won't get the Tennessee Tea Party anywhere politically:

By engaging in behavior that can only be characterized as childish and politically naive, the so-called leaders of the Tennessee Tea Party show us why the national Tea Party may be on the political rise, but in our State the movement seems to be dying a slow and painful death. Tea Partiers made complete fools of themselves a year ago this week at the State Capitol, with many screaming "kill the bill" while the House Industrial Impact Subcommittee was conducting a hearing on what would eventually become the Tennessee Health Care Freedom Act-a bill the Tea Party supported. Protestors nearly rioted in the hallway when the hearing was delayed a week after the bill was amended in subcommittee, which is standard operating procedure in many House committees. One of the so-called leaders of the Knoxville Tea Party shouting at Tennessee Eagle Forum President Bobbie Patray-one of the bulwarks of the conservative movement in this State.

The shame of the behavior of some in the local Tea Party folks is that so many of us agree with their basic ideas and have been preaching many of these concepts for many years ourselves. The arrival of the Tea Party made us believe that people were finally waking up to see what we've been saying. However, it matters little how "right" a person is if their "correct" political beliefs are accompanied by a lack of knowledge, a lack of respect for others, and an unwillingness to learn how the business of government works-and could work to all of our benefit.

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Butting Out

The Tennessee General Assembly needs to let local election results regarding liquor by the drink stand on their own:

What if it does fail again, however? There are those who think it right when people in a local area who do choose to keep their community or their county dry that some restaurant or club owner or an official of the local government (or both and more) should be able to seek some special exemption from the General Assembly once a referendum on the question has locally been decided. Such manuevering is all-too common, and has happened in this writer's home county. It has become the system of record that certain businesses ask the Tennessee Legislature for a "resort" designation so that they can be exempt from a dry law that might exist within their county or community.

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Bad Medicine

Former Tennessee House Speaker Jimmy Naifeh gets a taste of his own medicine:

Those were the days when Republicans were so few in the Tennessee House so as to be irrelevant. The House Republican Caucus was little more than an East Tennessee social club on Capitol Hill. Well the Lord works in mysterious ways, His wonders to perform...
For now the tables have turned and it is the Democrats who find themselves in the position the Republicans were once subjected to in the recent past. The position of being the leadership team that the lobbyists and the public interests go to because they know that these are the people with the votes to pass whatever they decide to put to paper. Representative Naifeh certainly remembers that kind of situation, because he was Speaker of the House during a time when Democrats held that kind of dominant sway in the Tennessee General Assembly.
It is really a simple case of mind over matter. We no longer mind you, Jimmy, because you no longer matter.

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Monday, March 21, 2011

Pearl's Out

I was thrilled when Tennessee hired Bruce Pearl as head Men's Basketball Coach in 2005, but I was very much aware then of his baggage with the NCAA. Pearl isn't worth the long-term risk to the program:

Many Vols fans aren't happy about the prospect of losing a coach who has led the men's basketball team to unheard-of levels of success. One close friend of mine remarked that Bruce Pearl could be fired over meeting a player at a barbecue, but that Ohio State football Coach Jim Tressel should be fired after Tressel admitted having knowledge that several of his players sold championship rings and other memorabilia to a local tattoo parlor in exchange for tattoos. Tressel didn't condone the players' actions, but in having knowledge of these clear rules violations but failing to report them, Tressel himself violated the rules. Tressel will serve the same five-game suspension that his players will be forced to serve. He was to have received a much lighter two-game ban, but the punishment was increased to five games at Tressel's request. In the grand scheme of sometimes arcane NCAA rules, Tressel's offenses were no worse than Pearl's, and if Tressel deserves to be fired, should not the same standard apply to Bruce Pearl?

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