Friday, October 14, 2011


Herman Cain may be a great candidate, and very well could be the Republican nominee in 2012-but he might want to rethink the third 9:

As Tennesseans are aware, we are fortunate in this State not to be burdened with a State income tax, and that means that the State is dependent on sales tax revenue for its daily operation, and many counties and localities throughout Tennessee are at least partly dependent on sales tax revenue to keep their books in balance. In Jefferson County, where this writer lives, that means that we pay a combined sales tax rate of 8.75% on non-food items, and-thanks to a Republican effort to lower the grocery tax at the State level-7.25% on our grocery bills. A tax chart from the Tennessee Department of Revenue gives the reader a very good idea of what we pay in combined sales taxes, and it drives up the cost of goods and services quite a bit, though it is worth it to avoid an income tax. However, the Cain 9-9-9 plan would cause the combined 8.75% tax rate in Jefferson and many other Tennessee counties to double to 17.75%, since we would have to add the new federal 9% sales tax to the government's take of our bills for goods or services. The 9-9-9 plan would cause the sales taxes that most East Tennesseans pay to increase anywhere from 100% to 125%-something that Tennessee Republicans would, in recent times at least, call an act of tyranny.

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Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Curry Todd Case

Standards of conduct that apply to one should apply to all:

Whatever that decision might be, it should be remembered that we ought not to hold a double standard. Many of us demanded former Rep. Rob Briley's (D-Nashville) removal from his Chairmanship and position of influence when he was caught driving drunk, complete with Maker's Mark bottle in his car. Yes, there are differences in the two cases-Representative Todd did not resist arrest or kick the windows out of a Sheriff's vehicle, and thus far he has not blamed bloggers or public access to the Legislature thus far for his personal fall, as Briley did. However, we cannot make excuses for the one while nailing the other to the wall.

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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Not Very Niceley

Representative Frank Niceley may be drawn out of Knox County altogether, and may split Jefferson County with Rep. Jeremy Faison:

At that time, we said that Rep. Frank Niceley (R-Strawberry Plains) would either pick up more of East Knox County or would get part of Sevier County instead. In the comments of that article, Senator Stacey Campfield (R-Knoxville) remarked that "we pretty much know (meaning that people on the Hill in Nashville were already aware) that Frank will not have any of Knox County." Two months later, that reality finally shows up in the pages of the News Sentinel. Further, Campfield commented that Knox County will likely add "at least half a House seat," and sure enough Knox County will get a brand new Tennessee House district with no incumbent as part of the new arrangement. It will be exciting to see where this district will be located who might run for this new open seat.

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Duncan On Redistricting

Awaiting the word on redistricting, Knoxville Congressman John Duncan Jr. has some ideas of his own:

Everyone who follows Tennessee politics has wondered for months what the shape of Tennessee's new Congressional and Legislative districts might look like, and among the chief speculators are those who might be impacted-the legislators and Members of Congress themselves. Congressman John J. Duncan Jr. (R-Knoxville) represents the 2nd Congressional District and he apparently has some opinions about what his district should look like-he needs to lose a few people in order to maintain the principle of "one man, one vote-"so he wrote a letter to Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell (R-Nashville). While saying in that letter that he is not attempting to speak for the entire East Tennessee delegation, he makes says some interesting things about where he thinks the cutting should come from his district and which district should be impacted by it.

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Monday, October 10, 2011

Occupy the Square

Market Square got occupied Friday night:

While attempting to insult corporations by wearing a shirt not fit to be seen by his grandmother, the young man in the photograph was dialing someone on a cellular telephone. The poor fellow probably uses Twitter and Facebook too, and was likely one of those who used those particular media to drum up enthusiasm for their little march. Of course, those means of communication were brought to them by the mean and evil corporations that they are protesting against.

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