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breaking news

Obamas leave Washington to begin life as private family

Opinion


Election offers shot at better healthcare

Stephen DeMaura is the president of Americans for Job Security. He wrote this for InsideSources.com. As the country adjusts to the news of the new president-elect, the Trump administration and a new Congress have an opportunity to make some key changes to our nation’s healthcare system, and it is hoped for the better. For the last year and a half, American voters have been intently focused on...

Readers Write: Jan. 18

Sessions will stand for all Americans John Lewis and Corey Booker are two peas out of the same pod incapable of seeing a man ( Jeff Sessions ) for who and what he is and stands for; the two acting simply as pawns of a failed party, a party that failed at their hand. The Democratic Party has reached an all-time low. They are lost in a swamp of quicksand and don’t have the ability to extract themselves...

Christian persecution thriving in left-wing America

Actress Meryl Streep’s political diatribe at the Golden Globes awards isn’t the only surprise attention-getting provocation from the event. Nominee film “Hidden Figures,” a box-office hit about the true story of three black women mathematicians who played important roles at NASA in the early days of the space program, is also generating unexpected controversy. The controversy...

Readers Write: Jan. 17

Trump’s antics will come back to bite him “Never make unnecessary enemies” is a sacrosanct rule of politics our prez-elect keeps ignoring. “The Donald” rides higher in deep red Georgia, according to recent AJC polling on Jan. 6. But, he’s likely to find out what the god-like Georgian Gene Talmadge discovered in 1942. Ol’ Gene angered the wrong crowd, meddling...

Readers Write: Jan. 16

Actress should have kept opinion to herself Meryl Streep’s rant at the Golden Globe Awards reminds me once again why I don’t watch these types of programs and haven’t for 20 years. On a night set aside to honor the achievements of those in the entertainment industry, Streep chose instead to use it as a political forum. All she had to do was walk on stage, grab her piece of tin, say...

Obama’s legacy was doomed by one of his first acts as president

The Affordable Care Act is considered the signature law from Barack Obama’s presidency, understandably so given its nickname, Obamacare. But as he prepares to leave office and we begin to assess his legacy, an earlier law better symbolizes his time as president and explains why he isn’t being succeeded by a Democrat. And unlike Obamacare, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, a.k...

It’s always about the money

Remember, it’s about the money. It’s always, always about the money. For example, Republicans have no real idea about how or even if they’re going to replace Obamacare. But one thing they know: They’re going to repeal surtaxes on the richest of Americans that have helped finance health insurance for an additional 20 million Americans. That, they’ve made a priority. As...

Jesus was right about the mouth revealing one’s heart

How about if we let Jesus answer Kellyanne Conway? Donald Trump’s indefatigable apologist was at it again on CNN, defending her boss against, of all people, Meryl Streep. The Oscar nominee got under Trump’s famously thin skin with a speech at the Golden Globes. In it, she chastised him for, among other things, mocking Serge F. Kovaleski, a New York Times reporter who has arthrogryposis...

Accentuating positives, building on basics will boost state

Nathan Deal is Georgia’s governor. Editor’s note: Following are excerpts from the 2017 State of the State address: In 1944, Georgia’s own Johnny Mercer wrote the (song) lyrics … “You’ve got to accentuate the positive/ Eliminate the negative/ Latch on to the affirmative/ Don’t mess with Mister In-Between.” That was great advice for our nation as World...

Georgia needs to maintain strengths, provide broad opportunity

State Sen. Vincent Fort, D-Atlanta. Editor’s note: Following are excerpts from the Democratic response to Gov. Nathan Deal’s State of the State speech: I stood before you at this same time one year ago — and proposed a vision for Georgia that provided real opportunity for middle- and working-class families. Opportunities for a good job with rising wages, opportunity for a good and...

Readers Write: Jan. 15

Health care should not be political pawn I’m a two-time cancer survivor. Without quality health insurance, my family’s finances would have been deeply impacted and my survival to raise my daughters less certain. Republican lawmakers eager to repeal the Affordable Care Act have forgotten that our healthcare system affects real lives and livelihoods. It should not be used as a political...

An awareness that should yield action

Andre Jackson, for the Editorial Board. Success can be seen as successfully managing the intersection of challenges, opportunities and action. Each affects the other. That insight seems especially clear heading into this year. And it carries implications for both this nation and Georgia. A hard-fought, divisive clash of an election year yielded decisive results and substantive changes in elected leadership...

As we were wrapping up our newspaper lineup Tuesday afternoon, this headline exploded suddenly on CNN: “Intel chiefs presented Trump with claims of Russian efforts to compromise him”. Setting aside that these words were challenging to assemble into useful English, it was clear that an already odd political narrative was taking yet another even odder twist. We don’t rely on CNN for...

MLK’s legacy, teachings should inspire us still

Adon Taft is a retired religion editor for The Miami Herald and taught social studies at a community college. The third week of January will be a momentous period in the history of our nation: Friday, Jan. 20th, the swearing-in of Donald J. Trump will mark the end of the presidency of Barack Obama, the first African-American ever to serve in that office. This Monday, the country will celebrate the...

Readers Write: Jan. 13

DeVos is best for Sec. of Education Of all the publicly funded government programs in our country, public education is probably the most important expenditure that we authorize. This is true because, more than every other public expenditure, education is the most important determinant in the success of a child’s life. Because of this trust that American taxpayers — and even our children...

How much clearer can Georgians’ support for school choice be?

Wanted: A politician who can count votes and read an opinion poll. That might sound like asking for a fish that can swim or a competitive eater who likes the taste of processed meat. But the subject here is school choice, which apparently keeps the wind off the raised fingers of Georgia politicians. The electorate could hardly speak more clearly about the issue. The latest cry comes from the AJC&rsquo...

Readers Write: Jan. 12

Obama’s “high approval ratings” dubious In a direct quote from the story (“Obama works hard to cement legacy,” News, Jan. 1), “[Neera] Tanden said Obama’s actions are bolstered by approval ratings significantly higher than Trump’s, a historical oddity.” Oh, I see. Are these supposedly high approval ratings coming from the same pollsters who virtually...

After seven years, GOP still has no health-care plan

It’s amazing to watch Republicans in Washington try to claim that really, they really really do have a plan for how they’re going to replace Obamacare, but you see, the dog must have eaten it or the Russians must have stolen it or here’s a note explaining that they need to be excused from the assignment because their grandmother died and can they bring it in next year or maybe in...

Dilemma around DNC chair carries great risk for U.S. democracy

The Democratic Party has good reason to be concerned. In Washington, Republicans now control the White House and both houses of Congress. Thirty-three governors are Republicans, and Republicans control both houses of state legislatures in 32 states, and Democrats control both chambers in just five. Because I am a conservative, I am happy about Republican ascendancy. But I also want a vibrant two-party...

Readers Write: Jan. 11

New From the Right columnist Editor’s Note: Conservative opinion columnist Star Parker appears for the first time in today’s AJC. She replaces longtime columnist Thomas Sowell who, at age 86, has retired from column-writing. Parker is a nationally known conservative activist. According to her bio, “Parker is the founder and president of CURE, the Center for Urban Renewal and Education...

Readers Write: Jan. 10

Lilburn should prepare for illegal signs Lilburn will no doubt benefit from the Community Improvement District landscaping project described in (“Lilburn district expands litter, debris removal,” County-by-County, Jan. 1). I hope citizen volunteers will step up and fill in where municipal and county maintenance budgets fall short. If the Northlake-LaVista CID is any indication, be prepared...

Readers Write: Jan. 9

Writer wrong about Dept. of Energy A recent letter to the editor provided a seemingly convincing argument for the elimination of the Department of Energy (“Energy Department a massive waste,” Readers Write, Jan. 3). However, the writer’s supporting evidence was dead wrong. First of all, our nation’s percentage of dependence on foreign oil has not increased as claimed but has...

Governing amidst uncertainty

The Georgia General Assembly resumes session on Monday facing more political and policy uncertainty than has been the case in a long time. The victory of President-elect Donald J. Trump and GOP gains in Congress have blown unprecedented fogginess into the near future’s political calculus. The continuing swirl in D.C. will be deeply felt in Georgia, and the other 49 states. GOP control here does...

Lawmakers should focus on gov’t. reforms that boost state’s well-being

Benita M. Dodd is vice president of The Georgia Public Policy Foundation. Opportunity is knocking as the door opens on Georgia’s 2017-18 legislative session. In a state with a Republican governor since 2002 and GOP majorities in both chambers since 2004, it’s time for legislators to welcome policy reforms that can improve income, opportunity and well-being. In 2014, the Legislature capped...

Georgia’s failing schools need fixing, but they’re not the only ones

The fight to fix Georgia’s worst schools didn’t end with the Nov. 8 defeat of the Opportunity School District by Georgia voters. It just shifted tactics. That’s the clear message from Gov. Nathan Deal as the General Assembly opens its 2017 session Monday. Armed with fresh data showing the number of Georgia schools that have received grades of “F” for at least three straight...

Following the stories readers care about

One of the most important seasons of the year is upon us. On Monday, the Georgia Legislature kicks off its session, and our political leaders will begin the lawmaking that has a big effect on the lives of Georgians. In today’s print edition and at MyAJC.com, you’ll find out what’s really going on under the Gold Dome this year. Our capitol staff has been working and planning for months...

‘A chance to live longer’

If you’ve watched much TV, you’ve probably seen the ads from pharmaceutical giant Bristol-Myers Squibb, which is spending more than $100 million annually on the campaign. “For adults with an advanced lung cancer called squamous non-small-cell,” the announcer says, “… it’s not every day that something this big comes along: A chance to live longer, with Opdivo...

Readers Write: Jan. 8

GOP must keep promise to repeal ACA The Republicans ran on repealing Obamacare. It’s time they stick to it. The Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, is no longer affordable. Premiums for Obamacare plans in Georgia will go up to 19.1 percent and some states are seeing as much as a 116 percent increase. Since 2010, Republicans have promised the voters to fully repeal Obamacare. Now...

Volunteer sleep-out opens eyes

Cathy Huyghe is an award-winning author, a columnist at Forbes online, and the co-founder of big-data services provider Enolytics LLC. She is a trained mediator, and previously worked in international negotiation. There’s a street corner in Buckhead, in one of the most affluent neighborhoods of town, that’s within close proximity to luxury clothing stores, high-end hotels, expensive restaurants...

Readers Write: Jan. 6

Where’s the straight-up honest liquor? After reading Beth McKibbens article on the fine art of drinking, I had to get an insulin shot. What’s up with all the sweetness? Honey, sweet vermouth, red wine syrup, pineapple, Campari, etc … and even umbrellas in the drinks — a world I no longer understand. What’s the matter, Atlanta? Doesn’t anyone drink anymore? It was...

The large field to be Atlanta’s mayor — and do what, exactly?

The largest field of contestants in 2017 this side of “The Bachelor” — hey, there’s no Republican presidential primary this year — is shaping up to be the candidates for Atlanta’s mayor. About a dozen folks have said they’re running. More may jump in. It’s enough to make you ask: What do they think they’re going to do once they get there? Nothing...

Readers Write: Jan. 5

Trump only in it for himself The letter (“Trump the man to make government more efficient,” Readers Write, Dec. 25), is indicative of the perception millions of people have about Donald Trump. Obviously, they don’t remember that he filed for bankruptcy on four occasions, ruining many subcontractors by not honoring his contractual agreements. They have never heard of Trump Aviation...

Random thoughts on a long life and our dangerous age

Any honest man, looking back on a very long life, must admit being a relic of a bygone era. Having lived long enough to have seen both “the greatest generation” that fought World War II and the gratingest generation that we see all around us today, makes being a relicmore of a boast than an admission. Not everything in the past was admirable. Poet W.H. Auden called the 1930s “a low...

The attempted murder of an ethics agency, foiled (this time)

Well, that didn’t take long. As their first official action in launching the Age of Trump, the House Republican caucus voted Monday night to gut the Office of Congressional Ethics. They voted in favor of taking an independent oversight agency with real power to hold members of Congress accountable and turn it into a toothless, voiceless hulk of its former self. Put another way, the very politicians...

Readers Write: Jan. 4

Pastor’s comments damaging, wrong North Point Community Church pastor Andy Stanley seems to relish controversy (“Local megachurch pastor stirs controversy with comments,” Living, Dec. 29). His latest over-the-top statements downplay Jesus’ virgin birth, one of Christianity’s foundational doctrines. In contrast, Andy’s father, First Baptist pastor Rev. Charles Stanley...

Readers Write: Jan. 3

Dept. of Energy a massive waste The U.S. Department of Energy was created in the Carter Administration with the express purpose of “reducing or eliminating the nation’s dependence on foreign oil.” Our percentage of foreign oil has increased with every administration — R or D — since then. It is a massive, boondoggling failure and is overrun with busybody do-nothings....

Readers Write: Jan. 2

Obama has diabolical agenda for Cuba Whether intentional or not, Barack Obama’s legacy can be captured in photographs of the suffering people the world over. Refugees pouring out of one Middle Eastern country after the other, illegals crossing by the hundreds a day across our southern border, Venezuela a snake pit of corruption. Now Cubans who have been oppressed for generations while existing...

Snatching health care away from millions

If James Comey, the FBI director, hadn’t tipped the scales in the campaign’s final days with that grotesquely misleading letter, right now an incoming Clinton administration would be celebrating some very good news. Because health reform, President Barack Obama’s signature achievement, is stabilizing after a bumpy year. This means that the huge gains achieved so far — tens...

For me and Trump, it’s personal

To start the year with a clean slate, let me make a confession: My problems with our incoming president, Donald Trump, are at least as much personal as political. Just to be clear, our paths have never crossed. By personal, I’m referring to matters of style, character and values, to basic understandings of what our country is and should attempt to be. Policies aside, the America that Trump embodies...

In 2017 practice more skepticism, less cynicism

It’s 2017, and so far the best thing that can be said is it’s not 2016. This past year was one many people would like to forget, for a number of reasons. There were the deaths of icons from Muhammad Ali to Arnold Palmer, from Merle Haggard to Prince, from Antonin Scalia to John Glenn. There were the terrorist attacks on commuters in Brussels, the gay community in Orlando, Bastille Day...

Readers Write: Jan. 01

Love, mercy satisfied through God’s justice At the end of William Kristoff’s “Pastor? Am I a Christian?” Opinion, Dec. 28, the difficulty reconciling justice and love is addressed. In every other worldview, when someone does something wrong, to show mercy to that person, justice must be violated. They deserve X for what they have done; they are given punishment that is less...

Unearthing problems can help solve them

Imagine that you are the victim of a vicious attack. You go to the hospital and physical evidence is taken so that police can use modern DNA testing to solve the case. Instead, that evidence sits in a file cabinet for years. The case remains unsolved and you don’t even know what’s going on. That probably happened to some women who visited Grady Hospital after they were sexually assaulted...

Judge both quick and dead against peers

Charles Babington covered politics, Congress and the White House for The Washington Post and other media outlets for 24 years. Jesse Owens was a mediocre sprinter, ho-hum hurdler, forgettable long-jumper. After all, hundreds of athletes exceeded his records. That’s absurd, of course. Sure, countless people have bested Owens’ longest leaps and fastest sprints over the past 80 years. But...

Readers Write: Dec. 30

‘World peace organization’ a joke The U.N. should be supporting Israel. She grants full civil rights to non-Jews, protecting the holy sites of all religions. She has issued proposals for the establishment of a Palestinian state and ceded land. Many groups in Israel promote Israeli/Palestinian coexistence. Yet, the U.N. condemns Israel, while colluding with the Palestinian leadership to...
Some of the best essays of the year

Some of the best essays of the year

Perry Link once noticed that Chinese writers use more verbs in their sentences whereas English writers use more nouns. This observation is at the core of his New York Review of Books essay “The Mind: Less Puzzling in Chinese?” which is the first winner of this year’s Sidney Awards. I give out the awards, named for the philosopher Sidney Hook, to celebrate some of the best long-form...

A two-track approach to helping Georgia grow

I spent a few days last month visiting struggling rural hospitals, to learn how a new state tax credit might help them. While traveling, I also took in the condition of South Georgia more generally. In a word, it’s depressing. No sooner had I returned home than a friend who grew up down there sent me a ranking of America’s poorest metro areas. It includes five from Georgia. That&rsquo...

Readers Write: Dec. 29

‘Esteemed Electors’ a subversive ad Subversive. That’s the word which came to mind as I read the paid advertisement to “Esteemed Electors” in the Dec. 15 AJC. Urging electors who have sworn an oath of duty to their states to ignore their responsibilities in a deliberate attempt to prevent the dutifully elected candidate from becoming president is an absolute threat to...

Trump, ‘Merry Christmas’ and a Happy New Year

John M. Crisp writes for Tribune News Service. Jay Bookman’s column returns soon. I tried to write a Christmas column without mentioning president-elect Donald Trump; as you can see, I have failed. You may have preferred not to think about Trump during the season that celebrates the birth of the man who said, “Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.” Jesus must have...

Liberal media sometimes inadvertently performs public service

Sometimes someone inadvertently performs a public service by bringing an unbelievably stupid and dangerous idea to the surface, where it can be exposed for what it is. The New York Times can be credited — if that is the word — with performing this public service in a recent editorial against proposals to allow law-abiding citizens to carry concealed guns. They refer to what they call the...

Readers Write: Dec. 28

Gov’t cares more about fees than lives As a risk consultant in the insurance industry who has been involved in vehicle safety, I can say with reasonable certainty and common sense, that if existing toll lanes were eliminated we would see fewer deaths. My point is simple — toll lanes makes traffic more congested. More congestion means more vehicles are squeezed into fewer lanes wherever...

Readers Write: Dec. 27

Conservatives cherry pick founders’ insights Since thwarting the majority of voters in two of the last five presidential elections, I hear a chorus of praise among conservatives extolling the wisdom of Madison, Hamilton, Jay and the Founding Fathers for creating the Electoral College. Interestingly, we reject every other aspect of the electoral process they codified. We no longer award the vice...

Readers Write: Dec. 26

State/feds should address traffic congestion Kyle Wingfield’s opinion column about the evolution of transportation planning in this state (“GOP transit plan for metro Atlanta continues to move down the track,” Opinion, Dec. 15) contained an excellent description of the problem and the players. However, this is not about MARTA versus the suburbs, or this or that county’s transit...

Farewell to a media voice who pushed policy over personalities