Archive for November, 2003

Bredesen Mismanagement Continues…

Monday, November 17th, 2003

Phil Bredesen, elected governor of Tennessee last year, continues to amaze. Two major planks of Bredesen’s campaign last year were his promised to restructure both TDOT and TennCare. So far Bredesen has failed on both. In fact, State Finance Commissioner Dave Goetz is asking for more money for TennCare. Bredesen is right that these are tight times, but he has not handled them well. A 5 percent across the board cut? How about double digit percentage cuts to TDOT and TennCare? Or better yet, how about scrapping TennCare altogether?

The lottery continues to continues to flounder along. I don’t have a problem with a state lottery, and it was voted in by the people of Tennessee. However, the mismanagement that has followed has been crazy. People voted for it because the money was alleged to go to education. Let’’s keep it that way, politicians!

It’s good to see Al Gore working again.

The National Council of Churches (NCC), a socialist organization unrelated to Christianity, has been generously rewarded for its staunch support of Saddam Hussein. As some of you may know, an NCC “Peace” delegation visited Iraq earlier this year, and met with Tarik Aziz in a treasonous effort to undermine America’s position abroad. The NCC has a long history of ties to socialism and communism. The donor is an anonymous woman, but I suspect it might be Rihab Taha al-Azawi al-Tikriti (a.k.a. Dr. Germ).

Be sure to pick up the Weekly Standard this week, as it will contain a detailed account of Saddam Hussein’s ties to Osama bin Laden. Predictably, this report has gone largely unreported in much of the media, which is a shame. It probably won’t do much to silence the “Bush lied” crowd, however. They proved long ago they don’t care about the truth.

The fallout over Sukhmani Singh Khlasa’s column continues, as two letters were published (Justin Cook and Kristin Sullivan) supporting his position. Hopefully, the pressure will be enough to force some changes in the Issues Committee. Parents and donors, take note!

Finally, a quick book recommendation: I just finished reading Thomas Sowell’s Basic Economics. If you haven’t read this book, I urge you to do so, even if you don’t like economics. It’s a very entertaining and informative read!

Hillary ‘04?

Sunday, November 16th, 2003

Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton spoke at an Iowa event, and the speculation continues as to whether or not Mrs. Clinton will run for president. I doubt she will… Instead, she’ll wait until 2008 to run, possibly against Jeb Bush. If she were to run next year, she could easily win the Democratic nomination, but she would also look like an opportunist (which she already is, of course). She knows her chances of winning against a popular incumbent would be slim, so look for her to run in ‘08 instread. Bring it on, Hillary, I say. Mrs. Clinton had better be careful, or she might just lose that senate seat to a certain former mayor of New York City.

Well, my college football predictions went fairly well, as I now have an 11-5 (.690) record. I’ll improve on that next week.

On Football, judges, and entitlements

Saturday, November 15th, 2003

Go Vols! UT played a very strong game, crushing Mississippi State 59-21. The Vols put together back-to-back strong games, and I’ll be the first to give them credit. Unfortunately, Auburn did not upset Georgia. Next week, UGA plays Kentucky, which means I’ll briefly become a Wildcat’s fan.

The all night sessions attempting to force a vote on President Bush’s judicial nominees are over for the Senate, and not much was accomplished, other than the usual finger pointing. The Republicans should have forced the Dems to do a REAL filibuster, Strom Thurmond style. The Democrats whine the Republicans are wasting time and money better used for unemployment and the like. It’s amazing how Dems suddenly care about wasting money. As for wasting time, yes I agree totally. That’s why I think the Dems should simply allow an up or down vote instead of playing their childish games.

The most interesting story in this debate is Ted Kennedy referring to President Bush’s nominees as “Neanderthals.” One of them happens to be an African-American named Janice Rogers Brown. Had a Republican made such a statement, it would have been all over the news (see: Trent Lott). But it’s okay for Democrats to be racist. Just ask Sen. Robert Byrd (D-KKK).

Another area in which the Republicans haven’t performed well is in the debate over a prescription drug benefit for Medicare. I had hoped this wouldn’t happen, but it appears as though it is about to become reality. What’s next – a prescription drug benefit for pets? Come on, this is just silly. I know large majorities of Americans support it, but President Bush and Republicans should have taken their case to the American people and explained that it wasn’t necessary. Instead they simply capitulate, and we get yet another entitlement program. The Republicans are drifting away from their small government roots, which is very frustrating.

Time for a delayed update…

Friday, November 14th, 2003

I intended to do an entry yesterday, but was unable to do so due to my involvement in a car accident while researching sports bars for an article for the East Tennessee Scene. Not to worry, no one was hurt, my car isn’t damaged badly, and it wasn’t my fault. I was rear ended on Kingston Pike. Still, it’s annoying nonetheless.

Lots of interesting things in the Daily Beacon. First of all, my fellow columnist Sukhmani Singh Khalsa had this blistering expose of the UT Issues Committee yesterday. Sukhmani’s column elicited this response, in which the writer urges the Issues Committee not turn itself into a “one-sided conservative soap box.” I don’t think there’s any danger of that happening, Mr. Banta.

Also in the Beacon was this apology for not mentioning anything about Veterans Day outside of the opinion page. In fact, it also apologizes for one of the columns, which was offensive to some veterans. Bet it wasn’t my column! As someone who was disappointed that the Beacon didn’t take time to recognize our veterans, I can also say I think it was classy of them to apologize.

This is hilarious. So is this.

From the Bad News for Democrats file: Rush Limbaugh is returning to the radio next Monday, and not a moment too soon. For the record, the best fill ins were Walter E. Williams and Matt Drudge. Here’s some bad news for local Democrats.

Looks like TVA Chairman Glenn McCullough may have been taking lessons from a certain former UT president.

Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore has been booted from office. The Court of the Judiciary probably had no choice but to do it, but I was saddened to see it happen. Moore made a courageous stand, but he likely knew he would eventually be booted. He made the stand and sacrificed his career in order to make a point. I respect that.

In sports, UT takes on Mississippi State tomorrow at 12:30. This should be a blow out win for UT, but Tennessee tends to have a talent for playing at the level of their opponent. For example, see Miami and Duke. Still, I think UT will win this one fairly easily.

My other college football predictions are: Auburn over Georgia in an upset, Kentucky over Vanderbilt, Florida over South Carolina, LSU over Alabama, Ohio State over Purdue, Miami over Syracuse, Michigan State over Wisconsin, Iowa over Minnesota, Virginia Tech over Temple, Oklahoma all over Baylor, TCU over Cincinnati, Florida State over NC State, Nebraska over Kansas State, Michigan over Northwestern, and Middle Tennessee State over Louisiana – Lafayette.

Carlson a Hit!

Wednesday, November 12th, 2003

Last night I attended a lecture by Tucker Carlson, who was brought in by the UT Issues Committee. I went in a skeptic. I was unfamiliar with Carlson, and had not heard very many good things about him. After listening to him speak however, I was impressed. He was very funny and offered some interesting perspectives. Carlson definitely delivered. Not that I’m satisfied with the Issues Committee, however. They still have a long ways to go to restore balance with their speakers.

What was most amazing was the fact that the UC was standing room only! More people attended this lecture than I have ever seen before (I’ve attended Sy Hersh, Howard Zinn, and Scott Ritter). Another interesting fact is that, while about half of the people who came to hear Hersh appeared over the age of 40, almost everyone who came to see Carlson appeared to be under the age of 30! I guess the local aging hippies decided to sit this one out.

One of the topics Carlson covered was the expansion of government. This has been one of the areas that I am most critical of President Bush. This fiscal year, discretionary spending is up 12.5%. Part of it is the result of the war on terror, which is understandable. Still, nonmilitary discretionary spending is up 8.7%, which is not acceptable. President Bush and the Republican-controlled Congress need to address this by cutting back on the pork and the social programs.

It’s official: Roane County is now the meth capital of the world!

Happy Veteran’s Day

Tuesday, November 11th, 2003

First off, I would like to wish everyone a happy Veteran’s Day! Our veterans are truly the unsung heroes of our nation, and we should all thank them every chance we get.

Speaking of veterans, my column this week deals with Lt. Col. Allen West, who is being unfairly tried to assault. Col. West saved the lives of many men in his unit, and does not deserve this treatment. There is also a petition you can sign. This news story needs more attention!

Well, well, well, it looks like those silly Presbyterians are at it again. This time, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has convinced the socialist National Council of Churches to join them in their boycott of Taco Bell. What’s interesting is that the PCUSA also contains on their Washington Office page a request that we e-mail our congressmen and senators requesting that the embargo on Cuba be lifted, thus ending an American boycott of Cuban goods. Does the PCUSA really think that Taco Bell treats its workers worse than Fidel Castro treats Cubans? The PCUSA needs to spend more time worrying about declining membership, and less time on goofy left wing activism.

This story is a joke, but it’s so close to being accurate, it’s almost not funny.

Tennessee’s least favorite son, Al Gore, gave a speech to Move On, a far left group. Gore cautioned about loss of civil liberties due to the Patriot Act. I am no fan of the Patriot Act, but hearing Gore complain about it was just too funny. Gore, part of an administration who gassed children at Waco, suddenly cares about civil liberties? Give me a break…

Senate Republicans are FINALLY going to make Democrats do a real filibuster, instead of just threatening one. This is a great move, and I’m glad Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) is finally standing up to the Democrats. Make the Democrats read the phone book, I say.

The new BCS rankings are out, and Tennessee, fresh off a brilliant upset win at Miami, has moved into the #7 spot. However, Georgia stands at # 9, so if the season ended today, UGA would play for the SEC Championship. UT’s strength of schedule is likely to suffer over the next few weeks, as their season ending opponents are Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, and Kentucky. All I can say is Go Auburn!

First of all, as much as I’d like to take credit f…

Monday, November 10th, 2003

First of all, as much as I’d like to take credit for coming up with the title “What Can Brown Do For You,” I cannot. My gun toting friend Nathan Fortner came up with it.

TDOT has decided on the Orange Route, which it had previously decided on last year. This will no doubt anger State Rep. H. E. Bittle, who last year accused the Sundquist Administration of lying. I am also disappointed, as I supported the Blue Route, which would have passed through Roane County. If the good people of Hardin Valley don’t want it, us Roane Countians will certainly take it! Kudos to Roane County Commissioner James “Dub” Harmon, for his tireless work for the Blue Route.

Am I sensing some desperation here, Sen. John F. Kerry?

Mike S. Adams has a great column at Town Hall about some suppression of free speech across the border at the University of North Carolina – Wilmington. It’s no UNC – Chapel Hill, but it might be getting there.

CNN’s Tucker Carlson will speak tomorrow at the University Center, obviously in an attempt by the notoriously liberal Issues Committee to appease conservatives. I’m not overly familiar with Carlson, so I won’t comment on his conservative credentials until after I see him tomorrow. Still, after bringing Howard Zinn, Scott Ritter, Jerry Greenfield, and Sy Hersh, the Issues Committee has a long ways to go if they wish to create any semblance of balance.

I’m now in the 21st Century

Monday, November 10th, 2003

At long last, I’ve arrived in the 21st century, with the advent of my own personal blog! Here, I plan to talk about whatever I feel like discussing. If anyone has any tips for me, please do not hesitate to e-mail me. I hope you like my blog!