Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Governor delivers State of the State Address and Unveils Balanced Budget Proposal

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam tonight delivered his 2012 State of the State address before a joint session of the General Assembly in which he shared his vision for the state and called upon those watching and listening to “believe in better.”

“We can believe in better for how state government serves Tennesseans,” Haslam said.  “We can believe in better when it comes to the education of our children, and we can believe in better when we talk about a stronger, healthier economy for our state.”

During his speech, the governor emphasized the importance of Tennessee job growth, a continued focus on improving education, public safety, a more customer-focused, efficient and effective state government and keeping taxes low.

“Our role in state government is to provide services that Tennesseans aren’t able to get on their own – we build roads, offer higher education options, guard prisoners, help families adopt children, care for the mentally ill, patrol highways, serve veterans and perform hundreds of other services,” Haslam said.  “My job as governor is to make sure we are providing those services in a customer-focused and effective way.”

Haslam also outlined his Fiscal Year 2012-2013 budget proposal, which reflects his priorities and includes strategic investments, necessary reductions and savings for the future. 
Highlights of the budget include:

  • Restoration of more than $100 million of the $160 million “core services” funding that was designated two years ago to be cut such as:
  • The Coordinated School Health program;
  • Extended teacher contracts;
  • Alcohol and abuse treatment programs;
  • Juvenile justice grants;
  • Diabetes prevention;
  • And matching dollars for state employee 401k programs.
  • Full funding for the Basic Education Program.
  • Nearly $264 million to fund long-deferred capital outlay projects in higher education including:
    •  A new science building at Middle Tennessee State University;
    • A science lab at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville;
    • A new patient diagnostic center at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis;
    • And planning money for new buildings at Nashville State Community College, Northeast State Community College, the University of Memphis and the University of Tennessee - Chattanooga.
  • A 2.5 percent pay increase for state employees.
  • $50 million to the Rainy Day Fund bringing it up to $356 million.
  • A continued commitment to the West Tennessee Megasite with $25 million.
  • More than $23 million to fund a new veterans home in Bradley County.
The budget also includes funding for the governor’s legislative proposals announced earlier in the month that include:
  • Tougher sentences for certain gang-related crimes and for gun possession by those with prior violent felony convictions along with mandatory incarceration for repeat domestic violence offenders;
  • Raising the exemption level on the estate tax in Tennessee from $1 million to $1.25 million to lower the tax burden on family farmers and family business owners;
  • And lowering the state portion of the sales tax on food from 5.5 percent to 5.3 percent with the goal of lowering it to 5 percent during the next three years.
Not mentioned in the Governor's address but worthy of noting is that he did not propose a raid on  the Land Conservation Trust Fund funding which is derived from a portion of the real estate transfer tax and is designated for purchase of park lands and critical habitats and natural treasures. Environmentalist and lovers of Tennessee's great outdoors are relieved. Despite this funding source being designated for a particular purpose, from time to time these funds have been diverted to the general fund. 

Lieutenant Ron Ramsey said of the speech, "It is so refreshing to sit in the chamber and listen to a State of the State address given by a Republican governor who shares my fundamental views on government. Gov. Haslam has laid out an agenda that will give the people of Tennessee exactly what they have asked for -- more jobs, less spending and smaller government. It is a continuing honor to be his partner in giving Tennesseans the efficient, responsive government they deserve."

The complete text of the governor’s speech and an archived video of his speech are available at www.tn.gov/StateoftheState.

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Update: Conservative Fusion Book Club Meeting Delayed

The meeting of the Conservative Fusion Book Club that was originally scheduled for tonight at my home has been rescheduled for Wednesday, February 15, 2012, 7:00 PM.

Tonight is the Florida primary and several people who would normally attend wanted to watch the primary returns and live commentary. Also, there were conflicts for the next couple weeks also so the meeting is being put off until February 15. That means that if you think you would like to attend, there is still time to order and read the book.

You are invited to join other conservatives and libertarians is civil discussion of serious books and an occasional debate.   Conservative Fusion meets once a month, meeting  in the home of one of the group members. The organizer and leader of this group is Gene Wisdom. The next meeting will be a discussion of The Conservative Intellectual Movement in America Since 1945 by George Nash. This is the definitive study on the development of the movement, with its various strands. It is truly the starting point in understanding the ideas and figures in modern conservatism. The book can be found, at a really great prices at Amazon. Unfortunately, I got the only copy out of the public library. 
Previous meeting have discussed the books Liberal Fascism by Jonah Goldberg,  In Defense of Freedom by Frank S. Meyer, The Road to Serfdom by F. A. Hayek, and Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlitt. Come share a glass of wine, a snack, a little socializing and and hour and a half of vigorous discussion. Visit the meetup site Conservative Fusion.

While the Meetup site list 30 members, there are about 7 regulars and a couple more people who have attended a time or two.  Once we get a solid core of a dozen or so people who attend regularly this group will be closed to new members. Read some great books and join the discussion.

Future books include:

Ideas Have Consequences (by Richard M. Weaver) 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012, 7:00 PM

One of the mega-influences of the early post-war conservative movement, Weaver's book was considered by Frank Meyer (who developed the idea of the fusion of conservatism's strands) as "the fons et origo (source and origin) of the contemporary American conservative movement." As such, I don't know why it sat in my library unread for so many years! Powerful in its arguments, it set the tone for much of the development of conservative thinking. Its subject is "the dissolution of the West". I hope you'll find time to read it soon. You can find it at http://www.amazon.com/Ideas-Have-Consequenc...

The Law (by Frederic Bastiat)

A firm statement against the expropriation power--and nature--of government, The Law is one of the classics that I believe can unite the libertarian and traditionalist wings of the conservative movement. There are at least three editions I find at Amazon. A short but powerful read.

Our Enemy the State, by Albert Jay Nock

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In Case You Missed It: Ron Paul Wins Tennessee Presidential Straw Poll

In Case You Missed It: Ron Paul Wins Tennessee Presidential Straw Poll

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Monday, January 30, 2012

It's our party.

The following essay is from a prominent local well-known Republican activist who has asked to remain anonymous. Rod    

by Anonymous

A few weeks ago, I received an email from a local blogger asking me to write an article. The request seemed simple enough; who did I plan to support in the 2012 GOP Presidential Primary in Tennessee? I had planned to write about how the remaining four candidates would all be a marked improvement over President Obama, but now I know I cannot do that. If I do, I will quickly be branded a RINO, the dreaded moniker assigned all Republicans that don't conform to the most strict of conservative mantras.

Over the past eight months I have supported different candidates for President. Each candidate is different in many ways. The only thing that matters to me at the end of the day is whether they can defeat an incumbent president. That's it. 

Yes, I care if they supported abortion at any point in their lives. Yes, of course I care if they didn't support a strong military in years past. I care that they support reasonable tax reform, and I want the candidates to consider many other reforms as well. I care about debt, spending, foreign affairs. I care about all of those things. 

So what should conservatives care about most? Debt or Spending? Abortion or Capital Punishment? Foreign Affairs or Homeland Security? Any conservative planting their flag into any single issue is missing the point. Our biggest concern is President Obama; a known quantity who also happens to be a worse option for President than any of the remaining GOP candidates (my opinion, of course). Conservatives need to unite behind whomever wins the nomination. Period. End of discussion. RINO or not. Doesn't matter. Maintaining control of the house as well as winning back a majority in the Senate would make for a very happy two-year period, pending any 9/11-like event. 

I've been hearing and seeing an incredible amount of angst in the Republican party in Nashville. It is utter foolishness. I may be a RINO because I believe that if we can elect someone more conservative than the liberals want to elect, it constitutes a minor victory. I'm a RINO because I like that Senator Corker and Senator Alexander aren't afraid to engage in open compromise on Capitol Hill. I also support Rep. DesJarlais and his absolutist policy stances. I support Rep. Blackburn, despite her initial support of SOPA/PIPA. Yes, Republican legislators may not always vote the way I want, but it's better than a democrat. Every single time, it is better. 

If you want to make a valid case as to why your preferred candidate is best, do it. But be civil. Leave the name-calling for another purpose. Talk of "kicking people out of the party" is ridiculous and should cease immediately. Its a non-starter for young Americans looking to engage in the political discourse. What could possibly be less inviting than knowing if you disagree on some issues that the perceived powers that be would excommunicate you? 

Trust me, it's no one's party to dominate. It's our party. As much as you may want to, you can't take the ball home with you when you get frustrated. That's the beauty of a social society and social political parties. 

As conservatives, we have a mandate: elect someone that will help restore and preserve the fabric of America. If we are too fractured to understand the need for every possible vote to accomplish this, then we have already lost. Romney, Santorum, Paul or Gingrich, I don't care. I know the vote I cast on March 6th matters less than the vote we will all cast on or before November 6th. 

If you don't see it the same way, then we've already lost in November.

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DCRP Chairman Releases Statement on Resolution Urging County Clerk to Resign

Nashville, TN — Davidson County Republican Party Chairman Kathleen Starnes today issued the following statement in response to a resolution by Metro Councilman Robert Duvall, urging the resignation of Davidson County Clerk, John Arriola.

 “On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Davidson County Republican Party, and the citizens of Nashville, I support the proposed immediate resignation of John Arriola from his post as County Clerk. Even the appearance of the misuse of public office for private gain is something we cannot tolerate. In the case of Mr. Arriola, the District Attorney has been quoted that there are activities that do appear ‘potentially criminal’ and D.A. Torry Johnson has asked the TBI to investigate. It is in the best interests of the office of the County Clerk for Mr. Arriola to step down and I urge the members of the Metro Council to support this resolution.”
For more on the Davidson County Republican Party, visit www.davidsoncountygop.org

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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Tennessee Republican Assembly Endorses Santorum After Paul Landslide In Straw Poll

Here is the news through facebook, from Combat Veterans for Ron Paul:

Combat Veterans for Ron Paul
Local news stations in Nashville tonight reported that the TRA had their straw poll (with no mention of vote tallies, percentages, or any numbers), and that THE TRA IS ENDORSING RICK SANTORUM. After the landslide victory Tennessee delivered for Ron Paul today, the TRA should refund the voters money and publicly apologize for ignoring the straw poll results and adding insult to injury by trying to use all the Ron Paul voters money to endorse Rick Santorum. The Republican establishment obviously doesn't want to embrace what could be the future of the party. Instead, they insist on pushing us out of the process and/or resorting to corrupt tactics to blackout the Ron Paul groundswell. Research this story! The Republican establishment doesn't care what the voters think!
EDIT: here is the link to TNRA contact

My Comment: I don't blame the the Ron Paul supporters for being mad. It was duplicitous of  TRA to have a straw poll and then issue an endorsement for a candidate other than the winner of the straw poll. This is highly unusual. I don't know that I have ever seen this done before. Last year when Ron Paul won the CPAC endorsement, we knew Ron Paul may not have not been the favorite of most regular CPAC members, but the Paul supporters organized and went to the convention and paid their fees and won the straw poll. If an organization fears the outcome of a straw poll, don't have it. If you have a straw poll then don't issue an endorsement for a different candidate. Play fair. TRA just used the Paul supports.

I like that the above writer called TRA "the Republican establishment." To be against "the Republican Establishment" seems to be TRA's only reason to exist. Now, someone considers TRA "the Republican establishment." He should have also called them "RINOs."

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"Occupy" Scumbags Burn Flag

Photo credit: AP Photo | Occupy Oakland protestors burn an American flag found inside Oakland City Hall during an Occupy Oakland protest on the steps of City Hall. (Jan. 28, 2012)

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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Ron Paul Wins Big at TRA Convention!

Ron Paul won the Tennessee Republican Assembly Convention straw poll by a huge, huge margin, beating out his closest rival Rick Santorum by a margin of better than 3 to 1. Here are the straw poll totals.

Ron Paul 200 votes
Rick Santorum 62 votes
Newt Gingrich 38 votes
Mitt Romney 15 votes
Jon Huntsman 1 vote

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Mark Rogers, Kicked out of Republican Circles.

I don't know the exact context of the news report to which Mark Rogers left a comment or the exact language of the comment Mark Rogers made that ticked off the female half of the Glen Hughes/Sharon Ford team know as the Tennessee Republican Assembly, but Republican political activist Mark Rogers is deemed kicked out of Republican circles by Sharon Ford. Below is a Sharon Ford Facebook post.

 Herbert Mark Rogers has cleaned up his post. It now reads "The TN Firearms Association has issued a threat to Speaker Harwell if there is no expansion of 'gun rights.' I applaud the Speaker for her performance so far and encourage her to stand up to these political terrorists. " He had another paragraph ripping not only 2nd amendment folks but also called TN Right To Life terrorists. For this he needs to be held accountable. He should no longer be welcome in Republican circles.
Mark Rogers
Glen also wanted everyone to be aware of this dastardly character known as Mark Rogers and told his followers,"You may not know his name but you have been in the same room with him on numerous occasions." I am going to give Glen a helping hand. If you look to the left you will see the no-longer-welcome-in-Republican-cirles Mark Rogers. So, followers of Glen Huges and Sharon Ford, this is the guy you are to shun if in the same room with.

Mark, welcome to the club of people not liked by the Huges/Ford wing feather of the Republican party. In a blog post I recently made a harmless snide comment that Ron Paul was going to win the TRA straw poll and maybe TRA should change it's name to "the libertarian wing of the republican Party" from "the conservative wing of the Republican Party." For daring to make such a comment I got purged from good standing as a Republican and got the dreaded label "RINO." Here is the Facebook post:

Once again our friend the irrelevant Rod Williams has chosen to stick his GOP establishment foot in his RINO mouth, by commenting on the post below. Mr. Williams stated “After the convention, maybe TRA needs to change its slogan to, "the libertarian wing of the Republican Party." The Straw Poll is controlled by those who buy tickets and is not an official endorsement of the Tennessee Republican A...ssembly. His implication is both uncalled for and unprofessional even for a two bit blogger. Paid members of the TRA will endorse during the business meeting of the convention. I encourage Mr. Williams if he has issues with the TRA and/or its straw poll to get off his wallet and doing something about it,
Mark, you and I are both in pretty good company. If you read Facebook post of Glen Hughes Sharon Ford and their followers, they don't like Bob Corker, Dianne Black, Beth Harwell or Ron Ramsey either.
I have been rethinking my comment that TRA should change its label from "the conservative wing of the Republican Party" to "the libertarian wing of the Republican Party" and think a more fitting slogan is "the stupid wing of the Republican Party."

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Report from the Tennessee Republican Assembly Convention

I just now received this report from someone who attended the convention of the Glen Hughes and Sharron Ford wing of the Republican Party that goes by the name of Tennessee Republican Assembly. (Well, not a wing of the party; more like a feather of the Party) This communication is from someone who prefers to remain anonymous and was speaking frankly. The characterizations in this communication are those of the anonymous reporter and not mine.  I was hesitant to post this because I do not think it contributes to Party unity. However, Glen Hughes calling everyone who does not march in lockstep with his views, a RINO does not contribute to Party unity either.

There were about 200 "Paulistinians," who showed up just to vote for the Ron Paul.  I estimate about 75 TRA, and an additional 50 who showed up to be seen (Marsha Blackburn included).  Why are people like Tootie, Nathan James, Duane Dominy, and William Morgan lured to this type of meeting?  Beats me.  Overall, yawn.  Speakers were boring and Angle has nothing of interest to add.  No wonder Reid beat her like a drum.  She was hawking her book, yawn again.  The Paulistinians were the most interesting.  If you think Glenn Beck is out there, then just talk to these folks.  The Lunatic Fringe calls them the Lunatic Fringe.
I used to belong to TRA and at some point just stopped paying my dues and attending meetings. I mainly stopped because I was, at the time, coordinating the Davidson County Republican Party "Egg and Bacon" summits which were weekly Saturday morning breakfast groups. At one time we had six of these groups and every Saturday of the month was taken attending these and TRA's meetings were also on Saturday mornings. I could not attend both.

When I was attending TRA, I did not feel out of place or unwelcome. I enjoyed the speakers and the good conversation and camaraderie. A couple years ago, I attended their annual convention myself.  Since then however, Glen Hughes and Sharron Ford have taken over TRA and somehow decided that I am really not a Republican but a RINO (Republican in Name Only).   I don't think I would feel comfortable attending the TRA convention. Also, when I was attending, they did not seem so fringe. They seemed pretty mainstream Republican. Even when I was active in TRA however, I was never sure why we needed the organization.

TRA calls itself the "conservative wing of the Republican Party."  Officially of course, TRA is Republican only by self identification and has no official association with the Republican Party. They state as their mission, "to work to recruit committed conservative activists to become involved in the Republican Party, earning and taking leadership positions within it and displacing RINOs ("Republicans in Name Only") who do not reflect the overwhelming majority position of Republicans across America."

Started in California in 1932, the first Republican Assembly worked to take back the California Republican Party from a liberal elitist faction that controlled the Party at that time. By 1964 the California GOP was in the hands of Goldwater Republicans. The California GOP has been in conservative hands since then.  In 1996, The Republican Assembly became a national organization.

Why is TRA necessary? There are no more Rockefeller Republicans. As far as I can tell, the Republican Party nationally, and certainly in Tennessee, is a fairly conservative party. I am not familiar with the Party in each state and maybe in some states there are Republican Parties that are controlled by liberals but not in Tennessee. Certainly there are disagreements and various factions within the Party and there are some people who care more about some issues than other issues and people who identify more with one candidate than another candidate, but I just do not see a big ideological divide in the Tennessee Republican Party.

Our own Davidson County Republican Party has as it's chairman Kathleen Starnes. Does anyone think Kathleen Starnes is a liberal?  We have on the Executive Committee people like Ken Merraro who blogs as The Blue Collar Muse and who is a TEA party activist,  Lonnie Spivak who ran for the 5th Congressional District Republican nomination and who is a leader of a conservative organization, Dan Davis and Tony Roberts organizers of Conservative Groups, David Hall who was the Party's 2010 5th Congressional District candidate,  Dave Patterson who ran on the Party ticket for a State House seat, and Brent Pierce who leads a chapter of the Ron Paul affiliated Campaign for Liberty. If you know any of these people, or became familiar with them when they were running for office, do you think they are liberals? Are they RINO's?

Who is the TRA trying to take the party from?  If they think the Davidson County GOP is liberal, what would a TRA dominated party look like?

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Metro Livery cited for refusal to engage in price-fixing!!!

Last night, Metro Livery received a citation of $104 by Metropolitan Transportation Inspector Milton Bowling for charging $25 for a less than 10 minutes ride instead of charging the mandated $45 minimum rate. This citation was issued one week after Federal Judge Kevin Sharp ruled against Metro, denying Metro's motion to dismiss the challenge to the $45 price-fix minimum.

Metro Livery and other service providers should not abide by what is most likely an unconstitutional law. I am not sure what will happen next but Metro Livery should appeal this fine and refuse to pay it.  They should seek an injection against enforcement of the price-fix law if that is an option.

To Metro Livery and others who are resisting this illegal effort to fix prices, Please don't buckle. Fight on! This is not just about your livelihood. This is a battle for the constitution, for free enterprise, and limited government.

To read more on how Metro has used the power of government to protect established firms from competition, click here then scroll down.

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Friday, January 27, 2012

Duvall resurrects resolution calling for Arriola's resignation | Nashville City Paper

Duvall resurrects resolution calling for Arriola's resignation | Nashville City Paper

“The comptroller’s report speaks for itself,” Duvall said. “We now have specific evidence that what we suspected back in August to be correct. Now we need to move on it.”

“If you listen to the emails that we’re already starting to get from the citizens,” Duvall said, “I think there’s absolutely going to be a tremendous [number] of citizenry demanding that he go.”

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Councilman Duvall's has filed a resolution in the Metro Council requesting John Arriola resign. Arriola's  malfeasance in office is a disgrace.  He needs to resign now.  A resolution overwhelming passed by the Metro Council may be the nudge he needs to realize that it is over and it is time for him to step aside.

Let your council member know how you feel. With one click, you can send an email to ALL MEMBERS OF THE COUNCIL:  www.nashville.gov/council .  Choose "Contact My Council Member" and select "Entire Metro Council."  Also a more personal  message to your own councilman letting him know you are his constituent and you care about this issue may carry more weight than a message to a council member who does not represent you.  So, do both; send a general message to all member and a personal message to your own council member.

Spread the word on your facebook and your email list also: ARRIOLA HAS TO GO NOW! 

Also we need to put pressure on Distict Attorney Torry Johnson to demand Criminal Charges against Ariolla.

We need to put a stop to this good ole boy political corruption that has been going on for ever. The days of Fate Thomas and Mack Smith are over. We need to demand honest government and punishment for those who abuse their office. DA Johnson office number is 862-5500.  Call. Pass it on. Pick up the phone...

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TN NORML Marijuana Education Day

Featuring NORML founder Keith Stroup, Esq.Saturday, January 28th, 2012, Sunset Grill, 2001 Belcourt Avenue, Nashville, Tennessee
Luncheon Seminar
Medical, Recreational and Legislative Updates
10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
$30 a person. Cash Bar.
For more information click here

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Greenhills GOP Breakfast: Double-Header this Saturday!














Saturday Morning At Swett's--Green Hills
Breakfast Served Starting At 8:15 a.m.
Program Starts Promptly At 9:00 a.m.
Bring $8.75 cash to cover everything.


See you Saturday!

Peter & Gail Voysey

Event Chairmen
DCRP Green Hills Breakfast Summit

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What Happened at the Jan. 24 Metro School Board?

Nothing. No votes were taken. No policies were discussed. The entire Board meeting was a workshop on "the data warehouse" explaining the collection of data on student's performance and demographic data collected and how this data is used and can be used in driving decision making. Unless you are directly involved in education in Metro this was very boring. I watch meetings of the Metro School Board so you don't have to.

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Thursday, January 26, 2012

What is wrong with the Davidson County Election Commission?

Why no Early Voting in Bellevue?

Super Tuesday is March 6, 2012.  Early voting for Davidson County is February 15, 2012 through February 28, 2012, with early voting at Howard School for the complete February 15 - February 28 period and early voting at satellite locations from February 23 through February 28.

Unless Romney or Gingrich deliver a knock out punch in Florida then the Super Tuesday states, including Tennessee, will be extremely important. The Florida primary is a proportional primary where candidates split the delegates according to the percentage of votes they receive, so it is highly unlikely any candidate can deliver a Florida knock out punch. Therefore, the primary election will most likely be decided on Super Tuesday March 6. Which brings us back to the Davidson County Election Commission and early voting.

The election commission has established these early voting locations:
  • Bordeaux Library, 4000 Clarksville Pk
  • Edmondson Pk. Library, 5501 Edmondson Pk
  • Green Hills Library, 3701 Benham Ave
  • Hermitage Library, 3700 James Kay Ln
  • Madison Library, 610 Gallatin Pk S.
What? What are they thinking?

I will try to establish a map pinpointing  these locations for these established early voting locations. For now,  imagine a map of Davidson County. What is wrong with this picture? Who will be voting in the Republican primary? Mostly Republicans. Right? What is a part of the county with large number of Republicans?  Bellevue and Belle Meade. But, the closest voting location for residents of the western end of the County, those folks living in populous Bellevue, is Green Hills. That is about 15 miles away.  Not many people are going to make a 30 mile round trip and navigate Green Hills traffic to early vote.  While there is also a Democratic County primary election on March 6th, the only races are Assessor of Property, Criminal Court Clerk, a General Sessions Judge, a Circuit Court Judge and the Democratic Executive Committee. None of these races will create much excitement and some of these offices may not even be contested. Turn out for the Davidson County Democratic primary will be extremely, extremely low. The real election on March 6th is the Republican Primary.

Why did the Election Commission not establish an early voting location in Bellview?  As established by law, the majority of members of the election commission at this time are Republicans. I do not think Republicans would be treated with any less consideration had we a Democratic majority election commission. Had we a Democrat majority election commission, I would think this choice of satellite voting locations was an intentional effort at voter suppression. What is the point of haveing a Republican dominated election commission if the Commission is going to treat Republican voters worse than would a Democrat dominated commission.

Looking again at the list of voter locations, I suspect that not a lot of people will be voting at the Bordeaux Library. I just don't think there are a lot of Republicans in Bordeaux. Why did the Election Commission not take a look at a map and put voting locations in areas most likely to have an interest in this election?  

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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

What the Auditors Found in John Arriola's Office.

Read the full 22 page auditors report on John Arriola's office.
Here are some of the findings:

  • collecting fees for marriage ceremonies,
  • failure to report computer fees to the country trustee on a timely basis,
  • "deficiencies in the administration of payroll,"
  • not requiring a part-time employee to document his time,
  • a part-time employee receiving full-time employee benefits, 
  • violating metro's procurement policies,
  • campaign activity in the clerk's office, 
  • failure to report use of an assigned vehicle as compensation,
  • sloppy record keeping, records and accounting for money. 
This looks pretty bad. Maybe criminal activity?

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More Allegations Against Davidson County Clerk

WZTV FOX 17 :: Newsroom - Top Stories - More Allegations Against Davidson County Clerk John Arriola

Among the key findings of that report, the clerk required employees to collect a $40 fee for marriage ceremonies without advising couples that fee was optional. The audit estimates John Arriola could have pocketed more than $119,000 through the fees.

Wow! $119,000 plus that fancy SUV with chrome wheels and all the extras! It pays to be a public servant.

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Dr. Steve Perry, MLK Commemorative Convocation Speaker is in Reruns,

If you missed it, you can watch it on Channel 3. 

On January 16th, Dr. Steve Perry was the convocation speaker at the Martin Luther King commemorative convocation at Tennessee State University. He made a great speech. He was entertaining, inspirational, and controversial.

I don't know Dr. Perry's political identification and don't know if he even considers himself a conservative, but his message was a message that conservatives could applaud. Speaking to an audience of mostly African-Americans, I am sure his message is one that many in the audience found challenging to accept and a message they seldom hear. As a white guy, I felt somewhat embarrassed. I am glad I was there and immensely enjoyed his speech, but I felt somewhat like an outsider watching another family's family argument.

Points he made and gems from his speech were these:

  • Nashville has terrible schools.
  • The day they put a metal detector in the school, it is no longer a school.
  • School choice is essential.
  • Schools are often places where the grown people work rather than places were children learn.
  • A bad teacher is more dangerous is  than a drug dealer.
  • The reason we like the status quo is because it benefits the adults.
  • The new racism is telling you that the reason we have under performing schools is because we have a large number of Black children in the school.
  • Don't think because a Black person is running a school, it is a better school.
  • I do not believe a child in Nashville is any less bright than a child anywhere else in America.
  • Why should you have to go to a terrible school just because it is close to your house. You wouldn't  have to go to a terrible hospital because it is close to your house. 
  • Martin Luther King did not fight for you to go to a Black school, he fought for you to go to a good school.
Dr. Perry's speech is being replayed on Metro's Channel 3. If you were not there to see it in person, watch it. It is a speech that everyone who is concerned about education needs to hear. It will be replayed several more times on Channel 3. The next showings will be tonight, Jan.25th 10PM and Jan. 26th, 5AM, and 10Am. For other listings visit the Metro 3 Playback  schedule.

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Ann Barnhardt is coming to Nashville

Ann Barnhardt is a livestock and grain commodity broker and marketing consultant who, among other things, has been critical of the Obama administration and of Islam.  She is a firebrand, sometimes compared to Ann Coulter. I was unfamiliar with her prior to reading of her upcoming appearance in Nashville and still know little about her. She does have several  youtube videos. From what I can gather from my limited exposure, she preaches financial doom and gloom and that Islam is not a religion.

"Ann Barnhardt says the things that everyone thinks but is too terrified to say," says the material promoting her appearance. Anyone who's publicity photo features herself with a pretty pink AK47,  I would expect to be provocative.

She will be appearing in Nashville, Thursday, January 26, 2012, 6:45 PM at the Green Hills Hampton Inn. The cost of the event is $15 and seating is limited. One must be preregistered to attend. The event is being promoted by 912 Project Tennessee. For more information go to this site.

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The Tennessean Finally Reports, Cab rivals win round one against new Nashville regulation.

I am glad to see the carrier pigeons finally reached The Tennessean. This news happened a week ago and I reported it on this blog at the time. I was afraid the Tennessean was just going to ignore this story. It is better late than never, however. This is a good report explaining the issue.

Drivers say Metro designed new rules to kill their business 

Jan. 25, 2012,  Three small-business owners have won the first round of a federal lawsuit challenging a Metro law that regulates non-taxi vehicles for hire.The car service operators say the new regulations — which, among other things, require sedan and limo services to charge a $45 minimum fare, ban them from using leased or old vehicles and require that they dispatch only from a fixed place of business for prearranged appointments — are anti-competitive and unconstitutional.


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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Government should do for people only what they cannot do better by themselves

Text of Obama's State of the Union address

"I'm a Democrat. But I believe what Republican Abraham Lincoln believed: That Government should do for people only what they cannot do better by themselves, and no more."

This was deserving of applause. I just wish I believed that he really believes it.

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Osama bin Laden is not a threat to this country.

Text of Obama's State of the Union address

"We gather tonight knowing that this generation of heroes has made the United States safer and more respected around the world. For the first time in nine years, there are no Americans fighting in Iraq. For the first time in two decades, Osama bin Laden is not a threat to this country. Most of al-Qaida's top lieutenants have been defeated. The Taliban's momentum has been broken, and some troops in Afghanistan have begun to come home."

This is worthy of applause. For the killing of Osama bin Laden, give credit where credit is due.

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I will take no options off the table

Text of Obama's State of the Union address

"Let there be no doubt: America is determined to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, and I will take no options off the table to achieve that goal."

This is worthy of bipartisan applause. I hope he means it.

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I guess it was worth crying over spilled milk.

Text of Obama's State of the Union address

"There is no question that some regulations are outdated, unnecessary, or too costly. In fact, I've approved fewer regulations in the first three years of my presidency than my Republican predecessor did in his. I've ordered every federal agency to eliminate rules that don't make sense. We've already announced over 500 reforms, and just a fraction of them will save business and citizens more than $10 billion over the next five years. We got rid of one rule from 40 years ago that could have forced some dairy farmers to spend $10,000 a year proving that they could contain a spill— because milk was somehow classified as an oil. With a rule like that, I guess it was worth crying over spilled milk.
I'm confident a farmer can contain a milk spill without a federal agency looking over his shoulder."

Even a blind pig finds and acorn every now and then.

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Fred Thompson Endorses Newt Gingrich

Newt Gingrich is the guy who can articulate what America is all about--American Exceptionalism. He can make the case, not just read the talking points, or do it off a teleprompter. He can make the case for free markets, and our basic case that lower taxes can be good for everybody, and bring about growth. It's good for everybody. He's not afraid, and he's tough, and he's experienced. I don't think anymore that it's an advantage to be able to say I know nothing about the operation of the Federal government. - Fred Thompson
I like Fred Thompson and wish he would have been President. Fred Thompson was the candidate I wanted four years ago. Watch this video. He makes a very strong endorsement of Newt.

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Monday, January 23, 2012

Ron Paul to win the Tennessee Republican Assembly Straw Poll.

The following was posted on the Middle Tennessee Ron Paul 2012 website:

The Tennessee Grassroots Ron Paul supporters are organizing to win this Straw Poll for Ron Paul in Nashville, TN.

A generous supporter has already paid $125.00 to secure a Ron Paul 2012 booth at the TRA Convention. I have confirmed that Romney and Gingrich will also have a booth at the convention.

Let's rock the establishment by diligently organizing and winning this Straw Poll.

Buy extra tickets, ask your friends/family to go with you and vote.

If you are a Ron Paul supporter from out of town, it'd be worth the drive to Nashville. The results of the poll will make local news via newspaper, conservative TN blogs, local news media, and more.

More importantly, it will send a clear message to Ron Paul that we are serious about getting him elected.

Tickets to vote in the Straw Poll are only $6.27:

TRA Convention with Straw Poll
Saturday, January 28, 2012 from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM (CT)
Hotel Preston
733 Briley Parkway
Nashville, TN 37217

For the win,
Joey Fuller
After the convention, maybe TRA needs to change it's slogan to, "the libertarian wing of the Republican Party."

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Saturday, January 21, 2012

Newt's Victory Speech!

Great Speech! If you missed it, here it is.  If you saw it is worth watching again.

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update: Newt Gingrich wins South Carolina Republican Primay!

Update: Newt wins very big! 

90% reporting
Newt Gingrich
Mitt Romney
Rick Santorum
Ron Paul
Herman Cain
Rick Perry
Jon Huntsman
Michele Bachmann

Newt Gingrich wins South Carolina Republican primary | The Ticket - Yahoo! News

Wow! Great news as far as I am concerned. I await the details. Now it is a two man race, I assume.

I am closing my poll posted on this blog. Here are the result of the poll of visitors to A disgruntled Republican who voted. Thanks to all who voted.
Michele Bachmann
  3 (2%)
Herman Cain
  4 (3%)
Newt Gingrich
  42 (37%)
Jon Huntsman
  7 (6%)
Gary Johnson
  1 (0%)
Ron Paul
  22 (19%)
Rick Perry
  2 (1%)
Mitt Romney
  20 (17%)
Rick Santorum
  11 (9%)

 Votes so far: 112

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Please vote in the poll to the left. Only hours left to vote

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Tootsies honored as one of the 25 best nightclubs - WKRN, Nashville, Tennessee News, Weather and Sports |

Tootsies honored as one of the 25 best nightclubs by Complex magazine.

I love Nashville and love to see our city get recognized as the great place that it is. I also love the honky tonks of lower Broadway. It is the music and lower Broad that makes Nashville a unique city. If you have never visited lower Broad, do it. If it has been a while since you visited, do it again.

I don't party on lower Broad as often as I did when I was younger but I do occasionally. I am more likely to go down to lower broad on a Sunday afternoon or a mid-week evening rather than a Saturday night. The music still plays but you have room to move. On a Saturday the crowds can be crushing and the dance floors are so crowded you can't dance. In December however, after an evening of doing the monthly art crawl, my wife Louella, our friend Sue Deuss and I ended up partying on lower Broadway. It was unplanned and spontaneous. We thought we would just walk back to our car by taking a walk up lower Broad. We ended up partying for hours. We went in and out of several bars. We would go in the front door of one bar, stand in the crowd listen to sample of a band, maybe stay for a couple songs, then work our way out the back door to the Opry alley, then walk in the back door of the next bar and work our way through it to the street. We ended up having a couple beers and spending a couple hours in Tootsie's visiting both the upstairs room and ground floor. It was packed and the music was loud and there was danger of getting beer spilled on you but we had a blast! There is something exciting about an enthusiastic crowd. The energy is contagious.

In the 70's when the Grand Ole' Opry abandoned the city and the city turned its back on Lower Broad and the area was overran by homeless and there were as many porno shops as honkytonks on lower Broad, Tootsie's stayed put and kept live music on lower Broad. Tootsie's is truly a Nashville treasure and Lower Broad is a unique place in America.

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