Warm Southern Breeze

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Posts Tagged ‘Tennessee’

Republican Tennessee Governor Bill Lee Has Lost His Mind

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, April 10, 2021

A gun in every pocket.

Not a chicken in every pot.

No pot there, either.

Not even medical.

The state wants people to kill each other.

But not in the womb.

That’d be wrong.

Shooting people to kill them, is A-OK.

Shooting pregnant women is not.

Might harm the unborn, you know.

Tennessee’s Republican Governor Bill Lee has signed NRA-written legislation that allows any adult aged 21, or older, to carry a handgun either openly, or concealed without any special training, education, or permit. Active duty Military Service Members aged 18 to 21 are excepted.

Tennessee’s Law Enforcement Agencies throughout the state, including the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, have told the Governor that they thought his idea was poor policy, but he ignored them, and signed into law a bill that removes restrictions on carrying firearms, either concealed, or openly.

Tennessee Republican Governor Bill Lee (RIGHT) signs HB786 as the bill’s sponsor, Republican Representative William Lamberth of Portland, District 44, observes.

Despite law enforcement’s opposition to his legislation that would end gun permits in Tennessee, Governor Bill Lee told a gathering from the National Rifle Association that his legislation would “make Tennessee safer.” However, he failed to mention how it would.

A spokesman for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation told a Senate committee, “The bureau has been consistent [in opposition] on this from a public safety standpoint.” The TBI and Tennessee Sheriff’s Association oppose eliminating requirements for concealed carry gun permits.

Governor Lee’s Press Secretary Casey Black said, “The ‘Constitutional Carry’ legislation is a key priority in the governor’s public safety package, which is focused on protecting law-abiding Tennesseans’ Second Amendment rights, while also significantly increasing penalties for criminals who steal firearms.”

Advocates point to permitless carry which is often misnomered as Read the rest of this entry »

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Tennessee’s Republican Legislators Seek To Cut Unemployment Benefits Time

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, April 9, 2021

Tennessee’s Republican State Legislators Have Lost Their Minds

Republican-written legislation being considered in the Tennessee General Assembly would kick to the curb over 65,000 unemployed Tennesseans who have lost their jobs due to the COVID pandemic.

Republicans are seeking to cut in half the time frame for collecting unemployment benefits.

Richie Townsend, 39, an East Nashville resident and former bartender at Rolf and Daughters in Germantown, has struggled to find work after losing his restaurant job when the COVID-19 pandemic struck in March 2020.

In the time since, he’s held various unstable, low-paying jobs from which he, and others, have been fired over three times, due to no fault of his own. During those times, he has applied for, and has been granted access to his State Unemployment Compensation, a type of insurance paid for by employers, and backed by the state government, which all 50 states have.

Fortunately, he has benefits remaining, but only because of the extensions granted by Congress.

He’s recently started a new job in Franklin, but even as the state told him it is expediting his request for benefits, he’s reached out to his state House member but hasn’t gotten any payments on his latest extension.

“It sounds like an over-exaggeration by our local government to try to react to the fact that unemployment was extended for a year and a half in total,” he said.

Though he hates to admit it, Townsend says he’s Read the rest of this entry »

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The Midnight Train To Georgia Has Left The Station

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, February 6, 2021

The Number 1 smash hit popularized by Atlanta, Georgia-based family band of Gladys Knight and the Pips in October 1973 was the work of a native Mississippian from Pontotoc named Jim Weatherly.

His family reported that Jim died recently at his residence in Brentwood, Tennessee, a tony suburb of Nashville, of natural causes, aged 77.

Weatherly wrote two additional tunes that became hits for Gladys Knight and the Pips: “Neither One of Us (Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye)” and “Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me” – which was originally recorded by country singer Ray Price.

A star quarterback for the University of Mississippi, aka “Ole Miss,” in the 1960s, after graduation, Weatherly, who had already formed a band with some classmates, moved to Nashville where he hoped to find his fortune. Nashville, however, long known as a very cliquish town musically, rejected him. So he and his band moved to the Los Angeles area where he became a songwriter in that area’s then-hot music scene. It was a “training ground” for many musicians who later became immensely popular, super-star caliber artists, including Glen Campbell, Jackson Browne, Tom Petty, Eric Clapton, Ringo Starr, Brian Wilson, Beck, and many others who populated the Laurel Canyon area – a mountainous canyon region in LA’s Hollywood Hills West district, in the Santa Monica Mountains.

Although Laurel Canyon is a rocky, arid, and largely agriculturally inhospitable area, it was fertile ground for artists like Joni Mitchell, David Crosby, Stephen Stills, Graham Nash, and Neil Young, Linda Ronstadt, The Byrds, Frank Zappa, Jim Morrison, Buffalo Springfield, Love, Michelle and John Phillips of the Mamas and the Papas, Roger McGuinn, Gene Clark, Chris Hillman, J. D. Souther, Judee Sill, Carole King, the Eagles, Richie Furay (of Buffalo Springfield and Poco) and many, many more, almost too numerous to mention.

But, lesser known is the backstory of Jim Weatherly’s first hit song for Gladys Knight and the Pips.

After his college football days ended, Weatherly worked in Los Angeles as a songwriter.

During his off-time in LA he often played flag football with other creative types who had athletic backgrounds – among them, Lee Majors, who himself was a former college football player and was then starring in The Big Valley as Heath Barkley, alongside the lead and central character Victoria Barkley, played by renown actress Barbara Stanwyck. The Big Valley was a unique western television serial whose central character was a woman (Stanwyck), who had taken Heath as her own, though he was the illegitimate son of her character’s late husband Thomas Barkley, following his death.

Jim Weatherly was inducted to the Songwriters Hall of Fame at their 45th Annual Induction and Awards ceremony at the Marriott Marquis Theater on June 12, 2014 in New York City.

The Big Valley was Read the rest of this entry »

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Funny Thing About The Nashville AT&T Bomber…

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, December 28, 2020

Undated image of deceased Nashville bomber Anthony Quinn Warner, 63, of 115 Bakertown Road, Antioch, Tennessee, whom authorities have identified using DNA testing from remains found on-scene from the blast site, as the perpetrator of the Christmas Day bombing of the AT&T distribution building in downtown Nashville.

He’s White.

Dude looks kinda’ pasty White.

VERY pasty White.

Not Black.

Not Hispanic.

Not Asian.

But White.

White-bread American White.

As in Read the rest of this entry »

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Ted Cruz, Jack Dorsey, Twitter, and Free Speech

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, October 29, 2020

GOP Texas Senator Ted Cruz, member of the Senate Commerce Committee, moments before he screamed at Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey via remote hearing about Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.

Once again, Ted Cruz turns in a great performance, and quite possibly may be nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award for the same.

A reminder:
While he was in high school, Ted’s parents talked him out of moving to California to pursue an acting career. So he said in a November 2013 interview with the Boston Globe.

But yesterday, the Asshole from Texas, aka Republican Senator Ted Cruz, made an ass out of himself.

No surprise there, eh?

Nobody likes Cruz. Recall that in 2016, former Speaker of the House, Republican John Boehner (OH-8) called him “Lucifer in the flesh.” Additional diatribes against Cruz may be found at the conclusion of this article.

Ted WILL make a run for the Presidency again, so he’s just posturing. After all, it IS election season, and even though he’s not on an election ticket, per se, he is on the ticket. And just 2 years ago (2018), Cruz just barely escaped being replaced by Democratic challenger Representative Beto O’Rourke (TX-16) – 50.9% to 48.3% of 8,371,655 ballots cast.

In fact, the entire GOP slate is on the ticket nationwide this year. And so far, it’s not looking good. It didn’t look good yesterday, either. The “optics” aren’t good, goes the saying about political appearances.

But more to the point…

The Senate Commerce Committee conducted a Full Committee Hearing on Wednesday, October 28, 2020, 10:00 a.m. which was entitled, “Does Section 230’s Sweeping Immunity Enable Big Tech Bad Behavior?”

What is Section 230?

In short, Jeff Kossett describes it as the “26 words that created the Internet.”

Who is Jeff Kossett?

Jeff Kossett is Assistant Professor of Cybersecurity Law at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, and is one of the nation’s foremost experts on Section 230. Regarding the law, he said, “Section 230 set the legal framework for the Internet that we know today that relies heavily on user content rather than content that companies create. Without Section 230, companies would not be willing to take so many risks.”

The law, written in 1996, modified the 1996 Communications Decency Act, is short, sweet, and to the point.

Section 230(c)(1) reads:

“No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.”

But this hearing was pure grandstanding from the get-go.

Why?

Senators Read the rest of this entry »

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Edible Fake Food Is A Real Problem, But Who Has Your Back?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, September 7, 2020

Food Fraud: How Do You Know What You Buy Is What It’s Labeled As Being?

What is it, how often, and where does it occur?

Who does it?

What’s being done about it?

Sure, you may pooh-pooh the thought, the idea, the notion, that someone, anyone (people) could be defrauded in food purchases.

And quite frankly, the reason why, is that YOU TAKE IT FOR GRANTED.

Yes, 99.99% of ALL PEOPLE in the United States TAKE FOR GRANTED THAT THEIR FOOD IS WHAT IT IS LABELED TO BE.

Milk, for example, comes from a mammal, such as a cow, or goat – NOT a plant, NOT a nut (almond) – a MAMMAL.

Horse, or donkey milk isn’t a popular item in the States. And I don’t think that I’ve ever seen, or heard of camel’s milk anywhere stateside.

But, there is NO SUCH THING as “almond milk.” It’s actually a HIGHLY PROCESSED, chemically-produced, made-in-a-chemical-laboratory concoction that’s a poor wanna-be ALMOND JUICE, or some other disgusting kind of slurry of crushed almonds that couldn’t make the cut for edible snacks.

If you want REAL FOOD, only buy REAL FOOD.

Same thing goes for the gobbledygook parading as “turkey bacon.” There’s NO SUCH THING. BACON COMES FROM THE PORK BELLY – NOT GROUND-UP, HIGHLY PROCESSED TURKEY MEAT.

The etymology of the word “bacon” (its origin and derivation) is from the:

“early 14c., “meat from the back and sides of a hog” (originally either fresh or cured, but especially cured), from Old French bacon, from Proto-Germanic *bakkon “back meat” (source also of Old High German bahho, Old Dutch baken “bacon”). Slang phrase bring home the bacon first recorded 1908; bacon formerly being the staple meat of the working class and the rural population (in Shakespeare bacon is a derisive term for “a rustic”).”

Chicken, beef, pork… same thing. Not only is it by law, USDA inspected to be free from diseases or defects, and for cleanliness and sanitary conditions of slaughter and preparation, it’s the world’s HIGHEST quality for those reasons.

And, believe it, or else, in some nations – such as China, or India – food is REGULARLY adulterated (contaminated and mixed with) non-food items such as cellulose (paper/wood pulp), then sold to unsuspecting consumers. And, it’s NOT illegal.

Adulterated, and purposely mislabeled food is NOT a problem with a limited scope, or occurrence, and sadly, in recent years, with the proliferation and increase in global trade, it has increased in volume, and incidents, at home, and abroad.

For examples of other such instances, see:
https://foodrevolution.org/blog/food-fraud-olive-oil-and-avocado-oil/

https://globalnews.ca/news/4014182/food-fraud-avoiding-fake-product/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/larryolmsted/2019/02/17/5-fake-foods-and-food-scams-you-need-to-avoid/

https://www.europol.europa.eu/newsroom/news/over-%E2%82%AC100-million-worth-of-fake-food-and-drinks-seized-in-latest-europol-interpol-operation

https://realfoodfakefood.com/

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/china-fake-food-sector-unlicensed-products-knock-offs-supply-chain-contamination-public-health-alibaba-walmart-inscatech-a7880341.html

https://www.fraud.org/fraud_food

https://nationalpost.com/life/food/food-fraud-hits-one-of-italys-most-famous-products-raising-questions-about-effectiveness-of-gourmet-labels

The United States’ food safety and health laws have historically prevented such abusive, deceptive practices from occurring. It doesn’t mean, however, that it never occurs. I have written about this subject previously.

And yet, mostly-Republican administrations (including this one) have attempted to cut back on Read the rest of this entry »

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White Lady Antebellum Steals From Black Lady A

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, July 9, 2020

White Folks Trying To Steal From Black Folks

Southern White Musical Trio Attempting To Steal Name From The Black Woman Who’s Used It For 20+ Years

OH!

The irony!

White folks sue Black woman who’s been known professionally as “Lady A” for 20+ years.

The original Lady A is a 61-year-old black singer who’s released multiple records under that name, and said in part that

“This is my life.
They’re using the name because of a Black Lives Matter incident that,
for them,
is just a moment in time.”

Lady Antebellum’s very actions exemplify and perpetuate the sense of White Entitlement.

For several years they didn’t give a rat’s rip about the name, and “suddenly” they care.

Yeah… right.

And so now, the racist bastards are gonna’ try and steal it from her… legally.

In a July 8 story in Billboard headlined as “The Band Lady A Files Lawsuit Against Singer Anita ‘Lady A’ White: Exclusive” Melinda Newman wrote in part that

“The suit also alleges that after conversations broke down between the band — whose members are Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley and David Haywood — and the singer and their respective attorneys, White’s new counsel “delivered a draft settlement agreement that included an exorbitant monetary demand.” While the dollar figure is not mentioned in the suit, a statement concurrently issued by the band says the amount is $10 million.

““Today we are sad to share that our sincere hope to join together with Anita White in unity and common purpose has ended,” the group said in a statement. “She and her team have demanded a $10 million payment, so reluctantly we have come to the conclusion that we need to ask a court to affirm our right to continue to use the name Lady A, a trademark we have held for many years.””

Variety picked up the news as well, and in an article headlined as “‘Lady A’: Group Sues Singer for Right to Share Name, Says Lawyers Demanded $10 Million; The Nashville trio says it was granted a trademark on “Lady A” in 2011 after five years of use, but the blues singer of that name first released music in 2010. So much for a planned joint single.” which was published Jul 8, 2020 5:30pm PT.

The information for the story came from an Instagram post made by the trio which in part read:

“It was a stirring in our hearts and reflection on our own blindspots that led us to announce a few weeks ago that we were dropping the word ‘Antebellum’ from our name and moving forward using only the name so many of our fans already knew us by. When we learned that Ms. White had also been performing under the name Lady A, we had heartfelt discussions with her about how we can all come together and make something special and beautiful out of this moment. We never even entertained the idea that she shouldn’t also be able to use the name Lady A, and never will – today’s action doesn’t change that.

“Instead, we shared our stories, listened to each other, prayed and spent hours on the phone and text writing a song about this experience together. We felt we had been brought together for a reason and saw this as living out the calling that brought us to make this change in the first place. We’re disappointed that we won’t be able to work together with Anita for that greater purpose.

That kind of drivel – prosaic use of language such as “a stirring in our hearts,” and words such as “heartfelt,” phrases like “all come together and make something special and beautiful” – are purposely designed to pull at the emotional heartstrings of readers, and are nothing but a manipulative tool.

And for Southerners, at least – and Lady Antebellum is a musical ménage à trois of Three White Southerners – one must include religion, so it’s entirely apropos to let folks know that “we prayed.”

They just have the wrong god – mammon.

This entire ordeal stinks to high heaven of racism, and White Entitlement – it is the VERY embodiment, the quintessential substance of everything and every ideal that the Black Lives Matter movement stands for, and fights against – White Power.

It also shows Lady Antebellum’s utter lack of creativity.

A creative person could’ve announced a New Name Contest and given the three runners-up “consolation prizes” of $10,000 each, while the Grand Prize Winner – all which would be submitted and chosen by fans – a $100,000 cash prize.

But no… Lady Antebellum is not that creative.

The Three White Bitches would rather expend much more money to lawyer up and very publicly legally steal from a Black Woman.

There are a variety of names which they now ought to be called:

• Entitled White Thieves
• Three White Folks Stealing Names
• The Southern Bi-Sexual Ménage à Trois
• Three Musical Confederates
• Sorry… Not Sorry
• Three White Lives Matter More
• All White Meat: Two Men and a Woman
• We’re Richer Than You
or, the most apropos…

• Three Clueless White Southern Shitheads.

But if they really want to stay with the architectural theme, they could take:

• Ghost of Frank Lloyd Wright
• Greek Revival
• Dorian Columns
• Corinthian Scrolls
• Split-Level Singers
• Ranch-Style Songsters
• Idols of Excess
• Marble Columns
• Three Colonnades
• Spiral Staircase (that name has been used as “Spiral Starecase”)
• Cupola Singers
• Belvidere’s Belfry

Of course, another altogether unique option is:
The Band With A Racist Name

Joe Coscarelli of the New York Times wrote and confirmed the proceedings which the Nashville trio made “In the weeks that followed [the announcement made by Lady Antebellum to change their name], an apparent détente between the two parties, initially celebrated on social media by both sides, faltered when representatives for White “demanded a $10 million payment,” the band said in a statement on Wednesday. Now, the platinum-selling Nashville group has filed a lawsuit that seeks no monetary damages, but asks the court to affirm “a trademark we have held for many years.”

So apparently, the figure of $10 million came up in negotiations between Lady Antebellum and Lady A, which Lady A seemed to have proposed for use of the name “Lady A.”

The group apparently refused.

They’re only worth about $84 Million… and counting.

Ten million wouldn’t even begin to put a dent in their savings or checking accounts… or in the accounts of their corporations, or their accountants, or army of lawyers, or the numerous members of their extended entourages.

But seriously, the platinum-selling threesome has confessed being lackadaisical in their name choice, so this shenanigans is nothing but pure laziness on their part.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8504311/Country-band-Lady-A-files-suit-against-singer-name.html

Now, before you go off all half-cocked, read on… to become full-cocked.

Yes, this entire ordeal is stupid.

And what exactly is “this entire ordeal”?

“This entire ordeal” is that Read the rest of this entry »

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Trump: A Made-for-Teevee President

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Apparently, the Current White House Occupant (CWHO) thinks that he’s fooling you.

But hopefully, you know the saying:

Fool me once, shame on you;

fool me twice, shame on me.

The origin of the “fooled me once, shame on you…” adage is from an 1817 book entitled “The Court and Character of King James, Written and Taken by Sir A. W., Being an Eye and Ear Witness,” p52 (Sir Anthony Weldon)

POTUS George W. Bush couldn’t get that saying right when he visited East Literature Magnet School in Nashville, Tennessee September 17, 2002 – his remarks are interestingly entirely apropos to today and befitting the CWHO:

“There’s a lot of talk about Iraq on our TV screens, and there should be, because we’re trying to figure out how best to make the world a peaceful place. There’s an old saying in Tennessee — I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can’t get fooled again. You’ve got to understand the nature of the regime we’re dealing with. This is a man who has delayed, denied, deceived the world. For the sake of liberty and justice for all, the United Nations Security Council must act, must act in way to hold this regime to account, must not be fooled, must be relevant to keep the peace.

Part of the American history teaches us that we must lead toward a more peaceful world. Part of the history of the world shows that as threats develop, we must deal with them before they become too acute, unmanageable. Part of our history is, is that we’re a peaceful people. We love and long for peace, that we want peace for generations to come. But sometimes we must act in order to achieve the peace.”

It should be noted as well, that there is SIGNIFICANTLY IMMENSE irony in those remarks which are entirely apropos and befittingly descriptive of this POTUS – the Current White House Occupant.

The CHWO is without question “… a man who has delayed, denied, and deceived the world” – AND the American people.

The self-congratulatory whitewashed video POS45 had made of himself in that act was more like

Read the rest of this entry »

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America! You’re GROWING!!! GET COUNTED! Because SIZE MATTERS!

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, April 16, 2020

Here are a few factoids for your entertainment.

• There are SO FEW people in Wyoming, that they have enough room on their automobile license plates to depict a cowboy on a bucking bronco… and STILL have plenty of room leftover for numbers & letters for EVERY car in the state.

• There are MORE people in Nashville, TN (669,053) than there are in Wyoming (578,759).

• There are MORE people in Tennessee (6,829,174) than there are in Colorado (5,758,736).

• The TOTAL number of students (13,131), faculty, and staff (9,253) at Vanderbilt University, and employees at the now-independent University Medical Center (24,039) totals 46,423, which, in effect, makes it a city unto itself, and is why the University (and MC) have the state’s ONLY state-certified police force, with full authority to perform EVERY law enforcement function of the state. They’re also voluntarily, and fully accredited by three law enforcement accrediting bodies, one international, one national, one state:

CALEA (Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies)
IACLEA (International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators)
TLEA (Tennessee Law Enforcement Accreditation)

Here’s a factoid sheet on VUMC (Vanderbilt University Medical Center).

Speaking of size (because, yeah… size matters!), we’re growing! And by “we” I mean to refer to the United States.

For example, did you know that: → Population Rank

• Denver’s population is 716,492. → 19

• Atlanta, GA’s population is 498,044. → 37
(And was once called the “New York” of the South.)

• Jacksonville, FL = 903,889 → 12
• Fort Worth, TX = 895,008 → 13
• Columbus, OH = 892,533 → 14
• San Francisco, CA = 883,305 → 15
• Charlotte, NC = 872,498 → 16
• Indianapolis, IN = 867,125 → 17
• Seattle, WA = 744,955 → 18
• District of Columbia = 702,455 → 20
• Boston, MA = 694,583 → 21
• Detroit, MI = 672,662 → 23
• Portland, OR = 653,115 → 25
• Memphis, TN = 650,618 → 26
• Fresno, CA = 530,093 → 34

Comparatively, these cities’ names, while familiar, might conjure up population pictures that are not necessarily what one might imagine.

For example, who would’ve thought that San Francisco (883,305) and Charlotte (872,498) are almost identically populated? Size Rank → 15, 16

Or Denver (716,492) and Nashville (669,053)? →  19, 24
Or Boston (694,583) and El Paso (682,669)? → 21, 22
Or Las Vegas (644,644) and Louisville, KY (620,118)? → 28, 29
Or Atlanta (498,044), and Read the rest of this entry »

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95 Year Old Nazi German Living In Oak Ridge Tennessee Ordered Deported

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, March 5, 2020

UPDATE: Monday, 22 February 2021 – WWII Nazi Concentration Camp Guard Removed to Germany
February 20, 2021
Man is the 70th Nazi Persecutor Removed from the United States.
Press Release Number: 21-169
https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/wwii-nazi-concentration-camp-guard-removed-germany

“Today a Tennessee resident with German citizenship was removed to Germany for participating in Nazi-sponsored acts of persecution while serving as an armed guard at a Nazi concentration camp in 1945.

“In February 2020, Friedrich Karl Berger, 95, was ordered removed from the U.S. based on his participation in Nazi-sponsored persecution while serving in Nazi Germany in 1945 as an armed guard of concentration camp prisoners in the Neuengamme Concentration Camp system (Neuengamme).

““Berger’s removal demonstrates the Department of Justice’s and its law enforcement partners’ commitment to ensuring that…”

“In November 2020, the Board of Immigration Appeals upheld a Memphis, Tennessee, Immigration Judge’s Feb. 28, 2020, decision that Berger was removable under the 1978 Holtzman Amendment to the Immigration and Nationality Act because his “willing service as an armed guard of prisoners at a concentration camp where persecution took place” constituted assistance in Nazi-sponsored persecution. The court found that Berger served at a Neuengamme sub-camp near Meppen, Germany, and that the prisoners there included “Jews, Poles, Russians, Danes, Dutch, Latvians, French, Italians, and political opponents” of the Nazis. The largest groups of prisoners were Russian, Dutch and Polish civilians.

Friedrich Karl Berger (1959), Visa photo

“After a two-day trial in February 2020, the presiding judge issued an opinion finding that Meppen prisoners were held during the winter of 1945 in “atrocious” conditions and were exploited for outdoor forced labor, working “to the point of exhaustion and death.” The court further found, and Berger admitted, that he guarded prisoners to prevent them from escaping during their dawn-to-dusk workday, on their way to worksites and on their way back to the SS-run subcamp in the evening.

“At the end of March 1945, as allied British and Canadian forces advanced, the Nazis abandoned Meppen. The court found that Berger helped guard the prisoners during their forcible evacuation to the Neuengamme main camp – a nearly two-week trip under inhumane conditions, which claimed the lives of some 70 prisoners. The decision also cited Berger’s admission that…”
–MORE–


UPDATE: Saturday, 21 November 2020 – Friedrich Karl Berger appealed his deportation case and lost. He will be deported as originally ordered.

• See: Removal Order Upheld Against Tennessee Man Who Served as Nazi Concentration Camp Guard During WWII
Thursday, November 19, 2020
https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/removal-order-upheld-against-tennessee-man-who-served-nazi-concentration-camp-guard-during


The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) has dismissed the appeal of Tennessee resident Friedrich Karl Berger, a German citizen who was ordered removed from the United States earlier this year on the basis of his service in Nazi Germany in 1945 as an armed guard of concentration camp prisoners in the Neuengamme Concentration Camp system (Neuengamme).

“Berger’s willing service as an armed guard at a Nazi concentration camp cannot be erased and will not be ignored,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Brian C. Rabbitt of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “On the eve of tomorrow’s 75th anniversary of the commencement of the Nuremberg trials of the surviving leaders of the defeated Nazi regime, this case shows that the passage of time will not deter the department from fulfilling the moral imperative of seeking justice for the victims of their heinous crimes.”

“Berger was an active participant in one of the darkest chapters in human history. He attempted to shed his nefarious past to come to America and start anew, but thanks to the dedication of those at the Department of Justice and Homeland Security Investigations, the truth was revealed,” said Deputy Assistant Director Louis A. Rodi III of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) National Security Investigations Division, which oversees the Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center. “War criminals and violators of human rights will not be allowed to evade justice and find safe haven here.”

The BIA upheld a Memphis, Tennessee, Immigration Judge’s Feb. 28, 2020, decision that Berger was removable under the 1978 Holtzman Amendment to the Immigration and Nationality Act because his “willing service as an armed guard of prisoners at a concentration camp where persecution took place” constituted assistance in Nazi-sponsored persecution. The court found that Berger served at a Neuengamme sub-camp near Meppen, Germany, and that the prisoners there included “Jews, Poles, Russians, Danes, Dutch, Latvians, French, Italians, and political opponents” of the Nazis. The largest groups of prisoners were Russian, Dutch and Polish civilians.

After a two-day trial in February, the presiding judge issued an opinion finding that Meppen prisoners were held during the winter of 1945 in “atrocious” conditions and were exploited for outdoor forced labor, working, “to the point of exhaustion and death.” The court further found, and Berger admitted, that he guarded prisoners to prevent them from escaping during their dawn-to-dusk workday, and on their way to the worksites and also on their way back to the SS-run subcamp in the evening.

At the end of March 1945, as allied British and Canadian forces advanced, the Nazis abandoned Meppen. The court found that Berger helped guard the prisoners during their forcible evacuation to the Neuengamme main camp – a nearly two-week trip under inhumane conditions, which claimed the lives of some 70 prisoners. The decision also cited Berger’s admission that he never requested a transfer from concentration camp guard service and that he continues to receive a pension from Germany based on his employment in Germany, “including his wartime service.”

In 1946, British occupation authorities in Germany charged SS Obersturmführer Hans Griem, who had headed the Meppen sub-camps, and other Meppen personnel with war crimes for “ill-treatment and murder of Allied nationals.” Although Griem escaped before trial, the British court tried and convicted the remaining defendants of war crimes in 1947.

The trial and appeal of the removal case were handled by Eli Rosenbaum, Director of Human Rights Enforcement and Policy in the Criminal Division’s Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section (HRSP), HRSP Senior Trial Attorney Susan Masling, and attorneys from ICE New Orleans, Office of the Principal Legal Advisor (Memphis), with assistance from HRSP Chief Historian Jeffrey S. Richter, and the Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center. The investigation was initiated by the HRSP and was conducted in partnership with the Nashville ICE HSI office.

Since the 1979 inception of the Justice Department’s program to detect, investigate, and remove Nazi persecutors, it has won cases against 109 individuals. Over the past 30 years, the Justice Department has won more cases against persons who participated in Nazi persecution than have the law enforcement authorities of all the other countries in the world combined. HRSP’s case against Berger was part of its ongoing efforts to identify, investigate and prosecute individuals who engaged in genocide, torture, war crimes, recruitment or use of child soldiers, female genital mutilation, and other serious human rights violations. HRSP attorneys prosecuted the first torture case brought in the United States and have successfully prosecuted criminal cases against perpetrators of human rights violations committed in Guatemala, Ethiopia, Liberia, Cuba, and the former Yugoslavia, among others.

To learn more about HRSP, visit https://www.justice.gov/criminal-hrsp.


• See also: https://news.yahoo.com/94-old-former-nazi-concentration-150221553.html

• See also: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2020/11/20/94-year-old-former-nazi-concentration-camp-guard-deported-us/

• See also: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/nov/19/friedrich-karl-berger-nazi-guard-loses-deportation/

• See also: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/board-dismisses-appeal-on-removal-order-for-former-nazi-concentration-camp-guard/ar-BB1bbepu


Friedrich Karl Berger, 94, of Oak Ridge, Tennessee, who voluntarily served as an armed guard in a Neuengamme Nazi concentration camp subcamp, had been a Tennessee resident for over 75 years, and was drawing an employment-based pension which included his Nazi service, has been ordered deported by the U.S. Department of Justice to Germany, where he still has citizenship.

An index card found submerged in a sunken ship in the Baltic Sea helped federal prosecutors prove their case. Justice Department historians documented his service at the camp with information from that index card which summarized his Nazi work.

Berger emigrated from Germany to Canada after the war with his wife and daughter, and entered the United States in 1959.

While in the United States, he made a living building wire-stripping machines, and is now a widower with two grandchildren.

After a two-day trial, Judge Rebecca L. Holt, a Federal Immigration judge in Memphis, TN, found him deportable under the 1978 Holtzman Amendment to the Immigration and Nationality Act because his “willing service as an armed guard of prisoners at a concentration camp where persecution took place” constituted assistance in Nazi-sponsored persecution.

He voluntarily served as a Nazi guard at Read the rest of this entry »

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Early Morning Tornado Blasts Nashville Tennessee On Super Tuesday

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Nashville residents and others in outlying areas along a pathway proceeding west-to-east of Nashville, including Mt. Juliet, located east of the Music City along I-40, were kept awake around midnight by the sounds of a tornado which wreaked havoc in the downtown capitol hill region, slightly north and east of the city.

The storm twisted its way through an neighborhood north of Nashville known as Germantown, into the Five Points area of East Nashville, and on through Mt. Juliet, 20 miles east of Nashville.

Nashville Fire Department officials have tentatively reported 48 collapsed, or damaged structures, numerous broken windows, and downed power lines. Numerous homes and businesses in the East Nashville and Donelson areas of metro Nashville were reported damaged, some perhaps, beyond repair.

Maggie Hannan, Community Relations Officer for Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, confirmed that, across a four-county region including Benton (Camden), Davidson (Nashville), Wilson (Mount Juliet), and Putnam (Cookeville) Counties, 19 lives were lost.

Authorities had earlier tentatively reported 14 deaths in Putnam County, 2 each in Davidson and Wilson Counties, and 1 in Benton County, but that figure has been revised upward and is expected to top well over 20 total deaths from this storm.

Putnam County officials wrote that “at approximately 2:00 a.m. CST, one confirmed tornado touched down between Read the rest of this entry »

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Bernie Sanders Said…

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, March 2, 2020

On November 19, 2015, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders addressed a crowd at Georgetown University.

It was not a campaign rally.

In the conclusion of his speech, he said:

“So the next time you hear me attacked as a socialist, remember this:

“I don’t believe government should own the means of production, but I do believe that the middle class and the working families who produce the wealth of America deserve a fair deal.

“I believe in private companies that thrive and invest and grow in America instead of shipping jobs and profits overseas.

“I believe that most Americans can pay lower taxes – if hedge fund managers who make billions manipulating the marketplace finally pay the taxes they should.

“I don’t believe in special treatment for the top 1%, but I do believe in equal treatment for African-Americans who are right to proclaim the moral principle that Black Lives Matter.

“I despise appeals to nativism and prejudice, and I do believe in immigration reform that gives Hispanics and others a pathway to citizenship and a better life.

“I don’t believe in some foreign “ism”, but I believe deeply in American idealism.

“I’m not running for president because it’s my turn, but because it’s the turn of all of us to live in a nation of hope and opportunity not for some, not for the few, but for all.

“No one understood better than FDR the connection between American strength at home and our ability to defend America at home and across the world. That is why he proposed a second Bill of Rights in 1944, and said in that State of the Union:

““America’s own rightful place in the world depends in large part upon how fully these and similar rights have been carried into practice for all our citizens. For unless there is security here at home there cannot be lasting peace in the world.”

“I’m not running to pursue reckless adventures abroad, but to rebuild America’s strength at home. I will never hesitate to defend this nation, but I will never send our sons and daughters to war under false pretense or pretenses or into dubious battles with no end in sight.”

Vermont U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, Georgetown University, November 19, 2015

The word ‘socialism’ has been used for many years as a fear tactic to persuade people to do, or not do, what the one who is using the word wants them to do, or not do. It’s been around at least as long as since 1931 – and likely, much longer. Perhaps 20 years, or more.

A cursory search of the Congressional Record (part 1 volume 45, p270) showed that in the 1910 Congress, in the Second Session, on December 20, Representative Frank Wheeler Mondell (1860-1939), a Republican, said in part the following:

“Advanced with the extraordinary argument that to take authority from the people locally and lodge it with a federal bureau is “saving” something for “all the people” and from the” interests,” and backed by the demand of a certain section of the press, inspired by socialistic government bureaus, the propaganda has much influence with some legislators.”

Demonizing “the press,” demonizing “socialistic government bureaus,” and claiming it’s all “propaganda.”

Wow.

That stuff reads like it was ripped from today’s headlines in 2020, over 110 years later.

Grand OLD Party, indeed.

Same… tired… old… rhetoric.

But, let’s continue searching in that year’s record.

Senator Porter McCumber (1858-1933), a Republican from Nebraska, addressed that body on February 4, 1910 and as found on page 1481, is recorded to have said in part, Read the rest of this entry »

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Lamar Alexander And Lisa Murkowksi Vote To Acquit Charles Manson

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, February 3, 2020

United States Senator from Tennessee, Lamar Alexander

Tennessee’s United States Senator, Lamar Alexander (b.1940), a 3-term Republican who is retiring this year, recently said of his decision to vote to acquit the President in the Impeachment Trial of Donald J. Trump, that, “I’m going to vote to acquit. I’m very concerned about any action that we could take that would establish a perpetual impeachment in the House of Representatives whenever the House was a different party than the president. That would immobilize the Senate.”

Alexander’s remarks were made in an interview on the NBC News program “Meet the Press” which aired Sunday, 02 February 2020.

He had previously issued a press release 30 January 2020, which stated in part that,

“It was inappropriate for the president to ask a foreign leader to investigate his political opponent and to withhold United States aid to encourage that investigation. When elected officials inappropriately interfere with such investigations, it undermines the principle of equal justice under the law. But Read the rest of this entry »

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Flooding Rains Damage Alabama and Tennessee

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, February 24, 2019

America could build infrastructure to PREVENT tragedies like this from happening. And by “tragedy,” I mean to refer to the damage done in the wake of such climatological events – REGARDLESS of their causes, whether human-influenced, or not.

We once did build infrastructure, or rather, attempted to, after the Great Mississippi River Flood of 1927, when nearly 30,000 square miles of land along the lower portion of the Mississippi River was flooded to depths up to 30 feet, and stayed flooded to that extent for well over two months before receding. That natural disaster displaced well over 1.5 million people, and killed thousands directly and indirectly.

After that, Republican POTUS Calvin Coolidge refused to call a Special Session of the then-adjourned Congress, and rather than initiating governmental action, wanted to raise money to facilitate recovery efforts through bake sales, church raffles and private philanthropy, which he also thought should be dealt with at a local level, rather than Federal. It’s NO exaggeration to write that.

Obviously, that approach didn’t work. So Coolidge, who couldn’t be bothered to go and visit the people in the areas devastated, came under significant pressure for his lackadaisical do-nothing attitude, and assigned the task of “doing something” to then-Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover, who – though Stanford-educated as an infamously mediocre student who failed all the entrance exams but mathematics – had led food distribution efforts in post-WWI Europe.

Newspapers were not kind to Coolidge, and the Jackson Clarion-Ledger (in Mississippi) wrote, “It has been necessary to school President Coolidge day by day a bit more towards the realization of the immensity of the catastrophe.”

The Paducah News-Democrat (in Kentucky) wrote that Coolidge had either “the coldest heart in America or the dullest imagination, and we are about ready to believe he has both.”

The New York Times however, saw things differently only because they were unaffected, and wrote, “Fortunately, there are still some things that can be done without the wisdom of Congress and the all-fathering federal government.”

But the Chicago Tribune thought little of the hare-brained scheme, and instead headlined a story with “Coolidge Backs Gigantic Flood Control Scheme,” while their Editorial Board wrote, “Only the resources and jurisdiction of the federal government can cope with the task of flood control.”

Coolidge’s contempt for government was well-known, and he disparagingly said, “If the federal government were to go out of existence, the common run of people would not detect the difference.”

Instead of governmental action, the Coolidge White House started Read the rest of this entry »

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White Male Domestic Terrorist Commits Early Morning Earth Day Mass Murder #AR15 Shooting @WaffleHouse In Nashville, Tennessee

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, April 22, 2018

The AR-15 rifle used in the Nashville Waffle House Mass Murder on Earth Day, Sunday 22 April 2018.

Let’s start Earth Day with some sad news.

Around 0325 this morning (Earth Day, Sunday, 22 April 2018), a White male gunman using an AR-15 rifle opened fire at the Waffle House, 3571 Murfreesboro Pike in Nashville and shot 6 persons, 4 fatally – 3 died at the scene, 1 at the hospital. The 2 others are being treated at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Crime Scene tape surrounds the Waffle House, 3571 Murfreesboro Pike in Nashville, TN where an early morning Mass Shooting Murder occurred around 0325 Sunday, 22 April 2018.

A patron wrestled away the gunman’s rifle.

He was reported to be Read the rest of this entry »

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In Response to John Goodwin’s FaceBook Post

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, December 5, 2016

A man named John Goodwin made a public post on FaceBook, which also included a link to an OpEd published in the Washington Post on November 9, 2016, which was written by Charles Camosy (PhD, University of Notre Dame), and entitled “Trump won because college-educated Americans are out of touch.” Dr. Camosy is an Associate Professor of Theological and Social Ethics at Fordham University, and the author of a book entitled “Beyond the Abortion Wars: A Way Forward for A New Generation.”

Mr. Goodwin’s FaceBook profile is sufficiently ambiguous of himself, though in his public post which is time & date-stamped 9:45AM, November 10, 2016, and ostensibly geolocated from Washington, D.C., he wrote of himself that, “I haven’t posted about the election mostly because 1) I do this for a living and most of you don’t,” which would lead one to suppose that at some level, he works in or with public policy, or more likely, with politicians.

I do not.

However, suffice it to say, that for many, many, many years, I have remained immensely interested in public policy, though I do not now, nor have I ever made my living from it, or influencing, or attempting to influence others in elected office.

In other words, I have taken the high road.

Mr. Goodwin’s public post to FaceBook is linked herein, as is the article upon which he expounded.

https://www.facebook.com/goody37/posts/10154328123133884

In order to fully understand the matter of discussion herein, I encourage the reader to fully read this item following herein, as well as Mr. Goodwin’s post, and the OpEd upon which he opined

I have responded to Mr. Goodwin’s post as follows:
His words appear italicized, and in “quotation marks.”
My commentary follows immediately after.

“…not everyone lives in big cities.”
• That is correct. The United States Census Bureau says that 80.7% of American reside in urban areas. In fact, they report that “the population density in cities is more than 46 times higher than the territory outside of cities.” So that leaves a whopping 19.3% in rural areas.

“I didn’t grow up with money.”
• Money had been invented by the time I was born. But seriously, someone votes for Donald Trump as if the wealthy are advocates for the impoverished or even the average American? C’mon. Mr. Born-With-A-Silver-Spoon-In-His-Mouth? Really?

“…not everyone went to elite colleges.”
• According to the United States Census Bureau, “in 2015, almost 9 out of 10 adults (88 percent) had at least a high school diploma or GED, while nearly 1 in 3 adults (33 percent) held a bachelor’s or higher degree.” I’m in the 33%. So I’m an elite. Thanks!

“You think they (people who eat at Read the rest of this entry »

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Terrorism In The South

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, October 6, 2016

quantrills-raiders-1924-reunion

Reunion of Quantrill’s Raiders, circa 1924, Oak Grove, Missouri. The first official reunion occurred in 1898, more than 30 years after Quantrill’s death and the end of the Civil War. The circled figure is Jesse James. Image from the Jackson County Historical Society and the Truman Library.

quantril-reunion-1901

The 1901 reunion of Quantrill’s Raiders in Blue Springs, MO. Note the tag in the upper LEFT corner of the image. Sim Whitsett was at this reunion and is probably in this picture. Also in the picture is Frank James (center front, named). The first picture of the Quantrill veterans (Sim Whitsett was in attendance) was taken at the 1900 reunion. The picture is of a parade of the attendees on horseback. The 1901 is the first group photo in which the faces of individuals can be (barely) distinguished.

In response to a post expressing justifiable criticism of terrorism at home and abroad, it occurred to me that terrorism itself is nothing new… not even in the United States. So, I thought to share a brief overview of it, which appears as follows.

—/—

You forgot all about the War Between the States.

The Southern rebellion, of course, was often comprised of loosely associated rag-tag bands of incompetents and criminals, which thrived and often deserted formal association with the Confederate Army, and ransacked their way throughout the countryside.

mosby-uniform-night-of-stoughtons-capture

John Singleton Mosby, image from his memoir. His note reads: “This picture is a copy of the one taken in Richmond in January 1863: The uniform is the one I wore on March 8th 1863 on the night of General Staughton’s capture. John S Mosby”

The rebels were known for such terroristic activities as Read the rest of this entry »

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Understanding ISIS Origins: Islamic Extremism & American Middle Eastern Foreign Policy

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, November 19, 2015

Gustav "Gust" Lascaris Avrakotos (January 14, 1938 – December 1, 2005) CIA Field Case Officer

Gustav “Gust” Lascaris Avrakotos (January 14, 1938 – December 1, 2005) CIA Case Officer, and Afghan Task Force Chief

After the Paris terrorist attacks of Friday, 13 November 2015, news media is awash in reports of seemingly innumerable variety. There is so much information, it’s almost like sifting sand or searching for a needle in a haystack to understand anything about the whys and wherefores of an evil international effort that has morphed into ISIS/ISIL/Daesh.

Charlie Wilson and a group of Afghan mujahideen during the Soviet war in Afghanistan. February 25, 1987. Contact sheet 1 photograph 16.

Charlie Wilson (center) and a group of Afghan mujahideen during the Soviet war in Afghanistan. February 25, 1987. Contact sheet 1 photograph 16.

Unquestionably, what happened is evil, and inexcusable. And just like any other crime, prosecutors search for motivations.

“But why would they!?,” you may ask.

In a nutshell, it’s PsyOps (Psychological Operations) work to understand the basis for motivation, because to prevent further occurrences, one’s mind must be changed.

But without further ado, here’s an easy way to understand what has happened, which will form the foundation, and guide understanding on what is happening.

What would it be like if Christians fought each other like the Hatfields & McCoys?

That’s what’s happening in Islam today.

Sadly, Saudi Arabia long ago Read the rest of this entry »

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TVA Closing Widow’s Creek Coal-Fired Electricity Plant In Stevenson, Alabama

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, May 8, 2015

TVA announced recently the Board of Directors voted to close the last operating unit of 8 coal-fired electricity generating operating units at their Widow’s Creek facility near Stevenson, AL by October 2015.

Especially problematic was the issue of costs associated with storing “fly ash” the toxic residual waste generated by burning coal. While fly ash is used in construction of roads, and in concrete, there is more waste generated than used.

Nationwide, increased “accidents” from accumulated and overfilled swamps of coal ash have polluted rivers and water supplies. Remediation costs associated with cleanup, and repair of waste storage facilities has proven unprofitable for TVA and other coal-burning electricity-generating utilities.

According to Knoxville, TN television station WBIR, TVA has spent an estimated $1.2 billion cleaning up since the [December 2008 Kingston, TN] spill. Coal ash is left over from burning coal to power a power plant.” Read the rest of this entry »

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How Successful Is It To Drug Test Public Assistance Welfare Recipients?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, October 5, 2014

UPDATE: 07February2016
http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/politics/2016/02/07/drug-testing-benefits-tennessee-yields-only-65-positives/79776756/

Since implementation of a law began July 1, 2014, the Tennessee Department of Human Services found only 65 out of 39,121 people who applied for a cash assistance program known as “Families First in Tennessee,” tested positive for illegal substances, or medicines for which they had no prescription.

That’s less than 1% of all applicants who tested positive.

That information was provided provided to The Tennessean by the Tennessee DHR.

An extra 116 refused to participate in an initial drug screening questionnaire, which automatically disqualified them for benefits.

The average monthly benefit of the cash assistance program was $165 per month in December – or $1,980 per year. If they otherwise would have qualified to have received assistance, the total value of the benefit to the 116 people who refused to take the test would have been $230,000 annually – if they had otherwise qualified for benefits.

Since the law began, 609 people have been asked to take a drug test: 544 tested negative, and 65 tested positive. Of those who tested positive, 40 were referred for substance abuse evaluation, and 13 enrolled in a drug treatment facility or recovery support group as a condition of receiving benefits.

The total cost to Tennessee taxpayers so far has been $23,592.

There’s a meme which circulates on FaceBook and presumably, in other places as well, which appears similarly as this:

Drug Test Public Assistance Recipients

Drug Test Public Assistance Recipients Meme

Honestly, the idea is a failure.

But you’d rarely – if ever – hear about it’s failures.

Florida was the first state to tread that path. What they learned was surprising. And then, the law was struck down by a Federal court. The states that embark upon Florida’s path will be wa$ting their citizen$ taxe$.

Only 2.6% of Florida applicants failed the drug test.

“Because the Florida law requires that applicants who pass the test be reimbursed for the cost, an average of $30, the cost to the state was $118,140. This is more than would have been paid out in benefits to the people who failed the test. As a result, the testing cost the government an extra $45,780.”

The purported savings in Florida’s program will be negligible after administrative costs and reimbursements for the drug tests are taken into account.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/18/us/no-savings-found-in-florida-welfare-drug-tests.html

But it wasn’t limited to Florida. Read the rest of this entry »

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More Hobby Lobby Store Hypocrisy: Investigation finds close ties to creepy resigned Southern minister sex molester

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, July 2, 2014

This just gets creepier and creepier.

In light of these recent revelations, perhaps the SCOTUS might want to vacate their decision.

https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/07/hobby-lobby-bill-gothard-institute-basic-life-principles/

Hobby Lobby Funded Disgraced Fundamentalist Christian Leader Accused of Harassing Dozens of Women

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Howard Baker 1925 – 2014: Photographer, United States Senator, Ambassador

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, June 26, 2014

Howard Baker, 18 years United States Senator from Tennessee, Republican Majority Leader, widely respected by Democrats & Republicans as “the quintessential mediator, negotiator and moderator,” Chief of Staff to President Ronald Reagan, Ambassador to Japan under President George W. Bush, and award-winning Photographer has died aged 88 in his Huntsville, Tennessee home of complications from a stroke Saturday, 21 June 2014.

He said of his photographic hobby that it “may be the only place where I can reasonably aspire to perfection.”

Mr. Baker began his photographic hobby as Read the rest of this entry »

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*!* ATTENTION ALABAMA RESIDENTS *!*

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, June 14, 2014

ATTENTION ALABAMA RESIDENTS:

Please continue to fund out-of-state K-12 schools, and send Tennessee, Georgia & Florida kids to college by purchasing Tennessee, Georgia & Florida Lottery tickets.

• Today, in Tennessee, over 100,000 students benefit annually, and Republican Governor Bill Haslam signed a bill written by Republican TN legislators which will pay for 2 years of community/junior/technical college education for every Tennessee high school graduate.

• In Georgia, over 1,600,000 students have benefited from Georgia Lottery.

• In Florida, over 650,000 students have received over $4,290,000,000 since 1986 to attend higher education.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Inequality in Government: Is there Racism in Mississippi? In 2014? Say it ain’t so!

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, April 4, 2014

It occurred to me recently in a couple conversations I had with friends in various parts of our United States, that equal representation is a matter with which we still struggle.

While on occasion I’ve opined about injustice through inequality – the United States’ Constitution guarantees Equal Protection and Equal Rights under law via the 14th Amendment – it occurred to me recently that there are some who “just don’t get it.”

More to the point, I was spurred by a photograph sent to me by a friend in one of our Northern sister states – the Land of the Frozen Chosen, sometimes also referred to as “The Great White North.”

In gentleness, I refer, of course, to Minnesota.

It was a photograph of my friend’s co-worker which sparked my interest, and subsequent curiosity.

The co-worker was Afro-American, aka “Black.”

I was somewhat surprised to see a Black person in Minnesota, so I queried the Census Bureau for some Quick Statistics about our United States.

Here’s what I found:
Only 5.5% of Minnesota’s population is Black.

In comparison to the United States at large, 13.1% of our American population in general is Black. And in Alabama, 26.5% are Black, while in neighboring Mississippi, 37.4% of that state’s residents are Black. Alabama’s Eastern neighbor Georgia has a closely similar percentage with a 31.2% Black population, while Tennessee is nearly half, with a 17% Black population.

Examining some other states, I found that Alabama’s Southern neighbor, Florida has a very closely similar Black population with 16.6%, while Louisiana’s Black population is just about double with 32.4%. The “Natural State” of Arkansas has a 15.6% Black population, while North and South Carolina are almost evenly tied with 22 & 28% respectively.

On the other hand, Texas has a lower Black population than either Tennessee or Arkansas with only 12.3%.

Kentucky? Only 8.1% of Kentuckians are Black.

Interestingly, of the 16 players on the Kentucky Wildcats Basketball team, only 6 are not Black. In other words, 62.5% of the team is Black – a clear majority. And yet, the state’s general population is completely and disproportionately unrepresentative of the team.

What about Virginia? With a 19.7% Black population, Virginia stands in distinct contrast to West Virginia, which only has a 3.5% Black population – a very stark contrast, indeed.

But what about some of the other Midwestern states?

Missouri has an 11.7% Black population, while only 3.2% of corn-fed Iowans are Black.

From Minnesota moving West, South Dakota has a mere 1.7% Black population, while Montana…

Well.. there just about no Black folks in that state, at all. Only a mere 0.6% – 6/10ths on one percent – of that state’s residents are Black.

A casual observation would be that it’s mighty White up North.

But let’s bring it back on home to Mississippi…

In a recent post shared by someone else on Read the rest of this entry »

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No More Alcohol in Gasoline?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, March 17, 2014

Recently, I received an email message from a friend, one who is highly intelligent, and who has a phenomenal diversity of life experiences. The item had a video to a Faux News video segment, which is included in this post, at the conclusion.

My response to the half-truthed item follows.

Here’s hoping you and others find it informative, and helpful.

While I have neither been the type to proclaim THE SKY IS FALLING! THE SKY IS FALLING! nor believe there is conspiracy against me, nor the paranoid type that imagines “the government” is out to get me (and therefore neither view nor read Fox News), I do think there is some credence to the item. (Of course, a “Snopes check” shows a mix of half-truths. But, if it ain’t all true, it ain’t true – kinda’ like the gas, you know.) More details on that follow.

In a story published published Saturday, February 1st, 2014, the Chattanooga Times-Free Press wrote how some motorists in that area are preferring 100% pure gasoline over the 10% Ethanol blend. (I happened to read that story at the time it was published.)
http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/2014/feb/01/some-motorists-want-their-gasoline-corn-free/

While residing there, I also noticed the same, and noticed that the price for 100% pure gasoline is higher than for the 10% ethanol blend. One day, while pumping the 100% gasoline at a Chattanooga gas station, I happened to speak with a gent at the adjacent pump about the difference. He shared an observation with me which I thought quite interesting, and one which certainly seemed reasonable.

He said that in an “accidental” experiment, he purchased some 10% ethanol blended gasoline for use in his lawn mower. He then poured some of the 10% ethanol blended gas into a glass jar, and let it set out at least overnight (or a bit longer). He observed that it had become cloudy from the accumulation of humidity.

While I’ve never tried such an experiment, I do note that many years ago, on occasion, I would run my little carbureted Toyota’s gas tank empty, and would then fill it up with 1 gallon each of Methanol, 100LL, Toluene, Xylene and Methyl Ethyl Ketone. I did so for at least two reasons: 1.) to get any water in the fuel tank & system out, and; 2.) to “clean out” any deposits that may have formed in the fuel system.

Of course, Gasoline and Water are different for several reasons, not the least of which is that Read the rest of this entry »

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Dumb Dope Smugglers Lose Little Load

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, November 23, 2013

From the third episode of “dumberer & more dumberer” comes this asinine item.

Officials: Package at Daikin plant marijuana, not bomb

By Eric Fleischauer Staff Writer | Posted: Thursday, November 21, 2013 9:54 am

Authorities have determined a suspicious package attached to a rail car in Decatur was not a bomb but contained marijuana, Morgan County officials said.

The rail car contained toxic gas and was at the Daikin America plant on State Docks Road.

Investigators said they believe the marijuana had been on the rail car since it was in Mexico. They said the package was the size of a large telephone book and contained 1 to 2 kilograms of marijuana. They believe the rail car entered the United States in Brownsville, Texas.

The package was in the dome on top of the rail car. It was discovered when

Read the rest of this entry »

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How much can one employee’s bad attitude cost? How about $360,000/yr?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, September 3, 2013

I’ve decided to take a different track with this entry.

I choose to grocery shop at Kroger.

I don’t grocery shop at Wal-Mart. I don’t grocery shop at Publix. I don’t grocery shop at Winn-Dixie. For the most part, I don’t regularly grocery shop at local Mom & Pop grocery stores, though on occasion, I have. On occasion, I do shop at Aldi. I don’t shop at Sav-a-Lot. On rare occasion, I have shopped at various local ethnic grocery markets for specialty items. But on the whole, I do the exceeding majority of my grocery shopping at Kroger.

I have grocery shopped at Kroger for well over 10 years. In the Tennessee city where I’ve resided for the past year, there is Read the rest of this entry »

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There’s something to be said for mothers

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, August 21, 2013


1“Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord,a for this is the right thing to do. 2“Honor your father and mother.” This is the first commandment with a promise: 3If you honor your father and mother, “things will go well for you, and you will have a long life on the earth.”b

4Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord.” cf.Ephesians 6:1-4 NLT

Politically, it certainly seems that Southerners have been more often wrong, than correct.

And today, continuing the tradition of Radical Liberal Republicans who endeavor to remove voting rights and foist more atrocities upon the nation, they continue to be “right” about being wrong.

Consider the following:

SUNDAY Aug. 18, 2013

“On this date in 1920, the 19th Amendment Read the rest of this entry »

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Remarks by President Barack Obama at Chattanooga, Tennessee’s Amazon Distribution Center on Jobs for the Middle Class, 07/30/13

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

July 30, 2013

Remarks by the President on Jobs for the Middle Class, 07/30/13

Amazon Chattanooga Fulfillment Center
Chattanooga, Tennessee

2:00 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, Chattanooga!  (Applause.)  It is good to be back in Tennessee.  (Applause.)  It’s great to be here at Amazon.  (Applause.)

I want to thank Lydia for the introduction and sharing her story.  Give Lydia a big round of applause.  (Applause.)  So this is something here.  I just finished getting a tour of just one little corner of this massive facility — size of 28 football fields.  Last year, during the busiest day of the Christmas rush, customers around the world ordered more than 300 items from Amazon every second, and a lot of those traveled through this building.  So this is kind of like the North Pole of the south right here.  (Applause.)  Got a bunch of good-looking elves here.

Before we start, I want to recognize your general manager, Mike Thomas.  (Applause.)  My tour guide and your vice president, Dave Clark.  (Applause.)  You’ve got the Mayor of Chattanooga, Andy Berke.  (Applause.)  And you’ve got one of the finest gentlemen I know, your Congressman, Jim Cooper.  (Applause.)  So thank you all for being here.

So I’ve come here today to talk a little more about something I was discussing last week, and that’s what we need to do as a country to secure a better bargain for the middle class -– a national strategy to make sure that every single person who’s willing to work hard in this country has a chance to succeed in the 21st century economy.  (Applause.)

Now, you heard from Lydia, so you know — because many of you went through it — over the past four and a half years, we’ve been fighting our way back from the worst recession since the Great Depression, and it cost millions of Americans their jobs and their homes and their savings.  And part of what it did is it laid bare the long-term erosion that’s been happening when it comes to middle-class security.

But because the American people are resilient, we bounced back.  Together, we’ve righted the ship.  We took on a broken health care system.  We invested in new American technologies to reverse our addiction to foreign oil.  Changed a tax code that had become tilted too much in favor of the wealthy at the expense of working families.  Saved the auto industry, and thanks to GM and the UAW working together, we’re bringing jobs back here to America, including 1,800 autoworkers in Spring Hill.  (Applause.)  1,800 workers in Spring Hill are on the job today where a plant was once closed.

Today, our businesses have created 7.2 million new jobs over the last 40 months.  This year, we’re off to our best private-sector jobs growth since 1999.  We now sell more products made in America to the rest of the world than ever before.  (Applause.)  We produce more renewable energy than ever.  We produce more natural gas than anybody else in the world.  (Applause.)  Health care costs are growing at the slowest rate in 50 years.  Our deficits are falling at the fastest rate in 60 years.  (Applause.)

So thanks to hardworking folks like you, thanks to the grit and resilience of the American people, we’ve been able to clear away some of the rubble from the financial crisis.  We’ve started to lay a new foundation for a stronger, more durable America — the kind of economic growth that’s broad-based, the foundation required to make this century another American century.

But as I said last week, and as any middle-class family will tell you, we’re not there yet.  Even before the financial crisis hit, we were going through a decade where a few at the top were doing better and better, but most families were working harder and harder just to get by.  And reversing that trend should be Washington’s highest priority.  (Applause.)  It’s my highest priority.

But so far, for most of this year, we’ve seen Read the rest of this entry »

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President Barack Obama to visit Chattanooga, Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, July 28, 2013

Chattanooga is an old, old, old, old city.

It’s older than Civil War old.

Throughout the city there are narrow streets, many (if not most) of which need widening and repaving. Interstate 24, which leads into the city, is in sore need of widening. Because of the twisting, winding route it takes as it leads into, through and around the city and it’s numerous mountains and hills, it can be treacherous. When any slowdown for any reason occurs, traffic can be backed up for 15-20 miles, or more. When wrecks occur on that route, they’re often fatal, and create even longer delays. The only other major route into the city is US Highway 72. There is no bypass. If there are problems on either of those two routes, significant delays can take hours. (See a Google Map of the area.)

It has a university – University of Tennessee, Chattanooga – with other smaller colleges & universities nearby (Lee University, in Cleveland & Southern Adventist University, in Collegedale). One of three hospitals in the area (each which has numerous campuses) Erlanger, is a Level One Trauma Center, and teaching hospital for the College of Medicine at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Memorial Hospital, is part of the Catholic Health Initiatives system, and is a teaching hospital, while Parkridge Hospital is operated by TriStar Health.

Because of industrial waste released by area manufacturing, in 1969, Chattanooga had the filthiest air in the nation. The Tennessee River which serves as a boundary for the area was equally polluted. For many years, troubles GALORE plagued the city, including economic inequality, poor race relations, deteriorating economic infrastructure, rapid population decline, and departure of industry.

Recognizing that the city and area residents were suffering a slow suicide, officials and interested citizens embarked upon a plan to revitalize the area, including cleaning up industrial waste, reinvigorating the economy with employment opportunity, and looking forward, rather than backward.

EPB (Electric Power Board), one of the public utilities in the area, came upon an idea to infuse their power grid with Fiber Optic cable to enable better response times, to pinpoint areas of concern, and to re-route electricity during power outages when lines were downed by trees or severe weather. They faced stiff opposition in the form of legal fights by Comcast (principally), yet were successful in overcoming. In turn, they sold High Speed fiber optic Internet Connectivity to area residents at a significantly reduced cost in comparison to the Wall-Street-traded Comcast. They also provide better service.

While the area’s renaissance is by no means complete, it has advanced with enormously significant strides.


 

Obama to visit uneven Chattanooga area recovery


published Saturday, July 27th, 2013

Mike Pare, deputy Business editor at the Chattanooga Times Free Press, Mike Pare MPare@TimesFreepress.com phone: 423-757-6318

Mike Pare, Deputy Business Editor, Chattanooga Times Free Press; MPare@ TimesFreePress.com phone: (423) 757-6318

by Mike Pare
view bio

When President Barack Obama flies into Chattanooga on Tuesday to tout new economic initiatives, he’ll see a city recognized in a national study as a metro area emerging from the recession as an “economic frontrunner.”

Area Development, a national business magazine covering site selection and relocation, ranked metro Chattanooga at No. 86 — in the top quarter — among 380 metro areas examined for the study titled “Leading Locations for 2013.”

While in Chattanooga Obama is expected to unveil new ways to spur the nation’s sluggish economic recovery.

At the Amazon distribution center at Enterprise South industrial park, the president will see a growing, state-of-the-art distribution facility with 1,800 full-time jobs created since 2011. The Chattanooga facility, along with Read the rest of this entry »

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Would President Obama privatize TVA & Kill the Goose that Laid the Golden Egg?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Shoals: Privatizing TVA is ‘a bad idea’

By Mike Goens
Managing Editor
Matt McKean/TimesDaily
4/21/13

Anglers fish below thousands of feet of power lines that run from TVA’s Wheeler Dam turbine systems. Those from the Shoals who work closely with the Tennessee Valley Authority said the federal agency should not be turned over to private companies. Matt McKean/TimesDaily

Anglers fish below thousands of feet of power lines that run from TVA’s Wheeler Dam turbine systems. Those from the Shoals who work closely with the Tennessee Valley Authority said the federal agency should not be turned over to private companies. Matt McKean/TimesDaily

If President Barack Obama needs help orchestrating an effort to privatize TVA, he shouldn’t expect much support from the Shoals.

Those from the Shoals who work closely with the Tennessee Valley Authority said the federal agency should not be turned over to private companies. They fear a privately owned TVA will lead to higher electricity rates, job cuts, more flooding problems and navigational issues on the Tennessee River and other waterways under TVA’s jurisdiction.

“The first questions you need to ask are what’s the gain for government and what would be gained by the community,” said Steve Hargrove, manager of Sheffield Utilities. “If the purpose is to make things better and there is reason to think it’s possible, I would be the first one interested in sitting at the table and talking about it. I just don’t see advantages of privatizing at this time.”

Obama brought the issue to the table through his 2014 budget proposal, which was released last week. He said selling TVA should be explored as a means to increase revenue by as much as $25 billion, money that could reduce the federal deficit and pay for other government services.

Hargrove has a unique perspective to the debate, having worked at TVA for 33 years before retiring as plant manager at Colbert Fossil Plant. He became manager of Sheffield Utilities in December.

His department purchases electricity from TVA and provides power to about 19,000 customers in Colbert County.

“I am a believer in the private sector, but I would fear their mission would be different than TVA’s,” Hargrove said. “The mission of TVA is not to make profit, and the mission of the private sector is to make a profit. They have to answer to a board that wants to maximize profits. When your primary goal is to make a profit, that becomes a higher goal than helping the community.

“TVA has had its problems, and bad decisions have been made, but its mission is good and they are an established part of the communities.”

Hargrove said residential rates for TVA customers in the Southeast are among the lowest 25 percent in the country and Read the rest of this entry »

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Tennessee may modernize antiquated beverage alcohol laws

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Tennessee has some very strange and peculiar laws regarding the regulation of beverage alcohol, most of which remain rooted in the Prohibition Era, and in in fear.

And, true to form, it would be no wonder that Baptists – the arch-conservative religious political right wing activists of the right wing party – are directly involved in efforts to keep the state mired in the antiquated bad old days of yore.

Tennessee is unique in the regard that state law forbids sale of wine except in state-licensed liquor stores. To clarify, the state of Tennessee has an unusual combination of laws that forbid sales of wine in any other type store save one that sells liquor. Further, sales are prohibited on Sunday. Beer, however, is able to be sold in grocery stores… but only if the ABV (Alcohol By Volume) is under 6%.

Alabama once had a similarly prohibitive content law, along with bottle size restriction – which severely limited the sales of domestic and imported craft/micro brew beers and ales. Alabama no longer has such prohibitive limitations.

And then, if one considers the implications of that law – mandating the sale of wine be exclusively limited to sales in liquor stores – the state actually sanctions the liquor enterprise itself, rather than being a neutral, regulatory body. In Tennessee there are no state-operated liquor stores as there are in Alabama. To have a state-run enterprise is not contradictory to the free market, because the state is a direct competitor in the market, which frequently has the lowest priced products, because taxes are the markup/profit margin for the state. Contrasting that model with the private retailer, the private retailer must make a profit atop the taxes which the state charges (after they purchase from the state at a wholesale cost – the same cost the state sells to the general public), thus increasing the retail price above what the state sells it.

Supporters and opponents of a bill that would let grocery and convenience stores sell wine undertook one final push to sway Tennessee lawmakers Monday ahead of a make-or-break vote in the state legislature.

Liquor store owners, grocery store operators, wine shoppers, a sheriff, an addiction specialist and a minister were among the people allowed to testify at a special hearing held a day before the Senate State & Local Government Committee is to vote on the biggest rewrite of Tennessee’s liquor laws in decades. Members guarded Read the rest of this entry »

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Growing America’s Middle Class and Increasing Profitability

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Some time ago, a friend shared an unsolicited comment about “ObamaCare” before all the ruckus over it had reached the SCOTUS. He had observed about a fellow he knew and described as “a snaggle-toothed Tennessee hillbilly,” whom had joined the United States Army. He observed that the fellow had some health needs, among them poor dentition and the need for corrective lenses. Upon his enlistment, he noted that the fellow was given proper healthcare, and all of his needs – food, clothing, housing, and healthcare – was provided by the United States government.

“Now, why did they do that?,” he asked rhetorically.

Answering his own question, he said quite simply, “because they know Read the rest of this entry »

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It’s not a joke. Republican voting states have lower education & income.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, November 18, 2012

Like it, love it, or hate it… there must be something to 1.) Richard Nixon’sSouthern Strategy,” and; 2.) The line made famous (or infamous, depending upon one’s perspective) by then-Washington Post reporter Michael Weisskopf in 1993 about being “largely poor, uneducated, and easy to command.“ And, for the readers’ benefit, in context, he wrote, “Corporations pay public relations firms millions of dollars to contrive the kind of grass-roots response that Falwell or Pat Robertson can galvanize in a televised sermon. Their followers are largely poor, uneducated, and easy to command.”
— Washington Post reporter Michael Weisskopf in a February 1, 1993 news story.

America’s Best (and Worst) Educated States

Published October 15, 2012

24/7 Wall St., Michael B. Sauter and Alexander E.M. Hess

The number of Americans with college degrees has increased steadily in the last decade. According to the latest government data, 28.5% of U.S. residents 25 or older had at least a bachelor’s degree in 2011, up only slightly from 27.2% in 2005. While the number is relatively unchanged, there are substantial differences across the country. In West Virginia, the state with the lowest graduation rate, 18.5% of adults have at least a bachelor’s degree. In Massachusetts, the state with the highest graduation rate, the figure is 39.1%.

Best & Worst educated states & voting record

Best & Worst educated states & Presidential voting record

This article was originally published by 24/7 Wall St. 

Based on education data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s’ American Community Survey, 24/7 Wall St. identified the U.S. states with the largest and smallest percentages of residents 25 or older with a college degree or more.

The difference in median income between those with only a high school diploma and a college degree is dramatic. The median pay for U.S. adults with just a high school diploma was $26,699 in 2011. For those 25 or older with a bachelor’s degree, median annual earnings came to $48,309. Residents with a graduate or professional degree did even better; median annual earnings was $64,322.

Differences in poverty rates related to education are just as dramatic. For U.S. adults with at least bachelor’s degrees, the percentage living in poverty in 2011 was just 4.4%. For adults with only a high school diploma, 14.2% were living below the poverty line.

The effects of wage gap by education becomes clear when comparing the states by graduation rate. Of the 10 states with the largest percentage of college-educated residents, eight are in the top 10 for median income. Among the worst-educated states, eight are among the 10 with the lowest median income.

24/7 Wall St. reviewed the percentage of U.S. residents 25 or older with at least a bachelor’s degree for 2011 from the annual American Community Survey. From that survey, we obtained Read the rest of this entry »

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Alabama Governor Robert Bentley Defies Federal Law, Refuses to Establish Healthcare Insurance Exchange for Citizens

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Governor Bentley is pulling a George Wallace stand-in-the-schoolhouse-door redux.

What an ignorant ass he is!

It’s exceedingly sad that he – as a physician – ordered Alabama’s 67 Counties Departments of Public Health to STOP giving Tuberculosis tests, thereby jeopardizing the public health of everyone who eats at a public restaurant, works in healthcare, and more – and was done as super-virulent, drug-resistant strains of tuberculosis are emerging. Gee, thanks, Governor Dr. Bentley. NOT!

Thanks for nothing, you jack-legged nincompoop!

By your defiant actions, Governor Bentley, you will FORCE the Federal Government to do something TOTALLY against your opinion – and that is, to establish a Health Insurance Exchange in Alabama.

You, Governor Bentley, are a lazy, sorry, idiotic jerk, in addition to being a liar, thief, incompetent boob, and contemptuous good-for-nothing.

Pejoratives aside, more than anything, this places the solitary onus of responsibility upon the governor and legislature to 1.) Increase education,; 2.) Increase employment; 3.) Increase Corporate Income Tax rates; and 4.) Increase Personal Income Tax rates on the wealthiest Alabamians who already pay a well-documented rate that is significantly lower than the impoverished.

By increasing educational attainment in Alabama, the governor will be demonstrating a high-quality, high-yield investment in the state’s most precious resource – people.

But the governor – bless him – is ignorant, and it is quite painfully obvious that he just doesn’t understand such simple concepts. He should understand them, however, because he has said previously, that he used the G.I. Bill to complete his medical training after his enlistment ended.

In stark contrast, Tennessee’s Republican governor, Bill Haslam said, “I’ve always said from the very beginning that anything we [Tennessee] can run instead of the federal government, we are going to run it better and cheaper,” The simpler thing to do is to say, ‘Here, it’s your idea, you run it,’ but I’m not convinced yet that that’s what’s best for our citizens. There’s going to be an exchange and ultimately, our citizens — through their insurance companies — are going to pay for the costs of running that exchange. So who do we think can run it cheaper: us or the federal government? I’ll bet on us every time. But we have to be convinced that the flexibility they will give us is worth taking the risk of running it ourselves.”

For the benefit of the reader who may be unaware of what an Insurance Exchange is, the exchange is designed to allow uninsured people to compare and buy health insurance plans through a single Internet portal. Those who earn up to four times the federally designated poverty level will receive subsidies to pay for the coverage.

Essentially, it’s an Internet-based non-business (nobody is making any money), that creates a database of health insurance carriers that all adhere to certain guidelines for efficiency and coverage. The law allows states to join together to run multi-state exchanges – essentially, insurance across state lines – or to exclude themselves.

In essence, make a list of companies that sell health insurance in the state, make a comparison of their plans and prices, and provide a link to the company for folks to buy insurance from whatever company they want.

Not too difficult to figure out, eh?

Here’s a link to an informative flyer from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation about what Health Insurance Exchanges are, and what they do.

You may also be interested in reading the informative site http://healthreform.kff.org.

 

Gov. Bentley says Alabama won’t set up exchange, expand Medicaid

By Kim Chandler | kchandler@al.com
on November 13, 2012 at 1:38 PM, updated November 13, 2012 at 5:19 PM

Bentley, in a show of continued resistance to the Affordable Care Act,  said this afternoon that he will not set up a state health care exchange and he will not expand Medicaid under the federal healthcare overhaul.

Alabama Governor Bentley speaks at luncheon

Alabama Governor Robert Bentley speaks at the Birmingham Business Alliance 2012 Governor’s Luncheon in Birmingham, Ala., Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012. (Tamika Moore | tmoore@al.com) / Tuesday, November 13, 2012 1:17 PM

“I will not set up a state exchange in Alabama,” Bentley said during a speech to the Birmingham Business Alliance.

States have a Friday deadline to inform the  U.S. Department of Health and Human Services  if they plan to set up a state-run exchange, essentially a marketplace for people and businesses to shop for insurance. If states don’t set up their own exchange, either alone or in federal partnership, then the federal government will step in and design it.

Bentley said he has been in communication with other governors  — including peers in Texas, Florida and Louisiana — about the exchange decision.  He expected multiple governors to show a united front of resistance to the Affordable Care Act.

“If we stand together, I do believe Congress is going to have to look at this again,”Bentley said.

Bentley said he expected other governors to announce similar decisions.

“That will Read the rest of this entry »

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Alabama: Keep ’em largely uneducated, ignorant & easy to command

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, September 30, 2012

Good grief!

Even Mississippi has a better record!

Why are Alabama‘s legislators so utterly clueless?

Oh… wait.

They’re a reflection of the people. Now it’s all beginning to make sense.

(News item follows the lyrics.)

Mississippi Goddam
(1963) Nina Simone

The name of this tune is Mississippi Goddam
And I mean every word of it

Alabama’s gotten me so upset
Tennessee made me lose my rest
And everybody knows about Mississippi Goddam Read the rest of this entry »

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Support Schools & Private Enterprise, Drink Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Whiskey

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, July 9, 2012

Having apparently not blogged about this, I find myself remiss that I so negligently – if inadvertently – omitted this news story… which I’m about to bash.

Before I proceed however, Alabama‘s governor, Dr. Robert J. Bentley, MD (a retired dermatologist), when he was campaigning for the office, on Thursday, June 17, 2010 vowed that, “I will forgo a salary as state representative for the rest of my term and will not accept a salary as Governor until Alabama reaches full employment.” To his credit, he has lived up to that vow, and has only accepted what is legally mandated – $1.00/month as representative, and has been reimbursed for minimal incidentals or travel-related expenses. The state’s records show he has collected about $2,100 in travel reimbursements during his term as governor. Alabama’s governor’s salary is about $112,000; and so far, as governor, he has only been paid $2 in salary.

Part of the irony of liquor, taxes and employment is that Dr. Bentley is a Southern Baptist. And for many years he has been a deacon at First Baptist Church in Tuscaloosa. As a denomination, Baptists are well-known and avowed tee-totalers, who continue to badmouth beverage alcohol. I suppose in some way, they could be considered modern Prohibitionists. But here, in this scenario, Alabamians – whose population is significantly Protestant – have enjoyed the jobs and money that making whiskey provides.

I suppose, however, that the irony is not lost on others, for the Amish grow tobacco, yet eschew its use. Similarly, many religious Afghanis (most who practice Islam) have grown marijuana and/or opium poppy to provide for their households, yet use neither. The discussion of the ethics of such decisions would be fascinating – at least it would be to me.

Now, on to the news.

It’s not the news, per se, but the atrocious writing which aggrieves me so.

Actually, the plant will be near Decatur, Alabama. More specifically, it will be located in the Mallard Fox West Industrial Complex, along Alabama Highway 20 in Trinity, Alabama. The complex is located in Lawrence County, which is the adjacent county WEST of Morgan County.

Lawrence County, AL_overview

Location of Mallard Fox West Industrial Complex in Lawrence, County, Alabama

But this raises another question, and it is this: If someone wrote that New York was in Los Angeles, you’d think them insane, right?

Well, why then would you not think the same for those who make such egregious errors as is so blatantly displayed in the following headline, and story?

DAMN IT, MAN!

GET IT RIGHT!

And Read the rest of this entry »

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Atlanta Federal Reserve: Southeast employment up in May

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, June 18, 2012

Slowly, but surely, the signs that our nation’s economy is improving are emerging.

They’re not rapid, they’re not massive, but they’re there.

And like a trickle that becomes a raging river, it’s beginning to rain.

District employment increases modestly in May

06/18/2012
Payroll employment 6th district 1/11-5/11

Payroll employment 6th district 1/11-5/11

The Sixth District as a whole added 9,000 jobs in May, following 9,600 new payrolls in April, and 18,900 in March, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Alabama, Florida, and Georgia recorded payrolls increases while Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee reported payroll decreases. Georgia was primarily responsible for the net positive District increase.

Payroll employment 6th district states 1_11-5_11

Payroll employment 6th district states 1/11-5/11

The District unemployment rate was Read the rest of this entry »

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BCS playoff system set to die. Will NCAA football ever be the same again?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, April 25, 2012

No use crying over spilled milk, eh?

BCS Head Calls Status Quo Dead

  • April 25, 2012, 6:09 PM ET

Late Wednesday afternoon, Bowl Championship Series executive director Bill Hancock said the words that many college football fans have been waiting more than a decade to hear: “The BCS as we know it with the exact same policies will not continue.”

Hancock made the declaration at the end of a day of meetings of BCS leaders at a hotel in Hollywood, Fla., to negotiate possible new formats for when the BCS’s current TV contract expires after the January 2014 bowl games. College football’s 11 major-conference commissioners plus Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick will meet again Thursday and hope to release a shortlist of formats under consideration.

Hancock clarified that Read the rest of this entry »

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Remembering the Nazi Genocide

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, April 20, 2012

Yesterday – Wednesday, 18 April 2012 – began Holocaust Remembrance Day 2012. It is now coming to a close as I write.

For those unaware, the Holocaust refers to the genocide of Jews, primarily, and of Gypsies, Jehovah’s Witnesses, the crippled, aged, mentally ill, and those with other disabilities, including homosexuals, dissidents and any others whom Nazis sought to eradicate because they thought them either subhuman, or ideological enemies.

In recent years, the word “holocaust” is being replaced in popular usage with another word “shoah,” because the word “holocaust” refers to a burnt offering as sacrifice made to the Almighty. The Jewish genocide was neither 1.) a burnt offering; and 2.) was not an offering to the Almighty. Shoah means catastrophe. Both words, “holocaust” and “shoah,” are Hebrew in origin.

One of the most fascinating stories of Remembrance comes from a tiny town of 1600 in the rural mountains of southeastern Tennessee.

Tucked away in the gentle rolling green hills where coal mining is a way of life for many, is a memorial to the 6,000,000+ people brutally killed by Hitler’s Nazi regime. Even more fascinating is that the memorial was a project by the middle school children of Whitwell. For example, who would imagine that children whom are largely isolated from world events by their location, who are homogeneously white, Protestant Christians, would have any connection to the tragedy that remains one of the most brutal scars in human history?

The 2004 documentary film Paper Clips retraces the steps in the process of bring that memorial to fruition.

Also unbeknownst to many, during World War II, the humble paperclip was a symbol of Norwegian national solidarity, concord and opposition to Nazi German authorities occupation.

But moreover, you may be asking “Why remember?”

For the simple reason that “Those who forget history are condemned to repeat it”

Paper Clips‘ Links Town, Holocaust Legacy

April 18, 2012 – Deborah Hirsch, Jewish Exponent Staff

Whitwell, Tenn.The Jewish population of Whitwell, Tenn., increased by 5,300 percent on Sunday as a busload of 53 teens and adults from Har Zion Temple pulled into the tiny, rural town.

Har Zion student Rachel Weiss tours the rail car
Photo by Jay Gorodetzer.

The mostly white, Protestant population here has grown accustomed to welcoming tourists since middle schoolers collecting paper clips to represent the Holocaust death toll picked up media attention and eventually built a full-fledged memorial. But this was the first time they’d greeted so many Jews from quite so far away: 27 students plus parents and clergy from the Conservative synagogue in Penn Valley.

“We’re standing in Appalachia and not somewhere you’d expect that people would care, and I feel like they care even more,” said Jordan Gottlieb, a freshman at the Shipley School.

The impetus for the whirlwind overnight trip came from Norman Einhorn, co-principal of Har Zion’s Hebrew high school. He’d been using the 2004 Paper Clips documentary to teach his students its “incredible lesson about taking care of others,” and arranged to have Whitwell teacher Sandra Roberts come to Har Zion in November. So moved by her speech, he vowed — “in the heat of the moment” — that synagogue members would find a way to visit the memorial.

In less than six months, he had more Read the rest of this entry »

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Tennessee “Firefighters” let homeowner’s house burn. Why?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, December 8, 2011

Perhaps an alternate title of this entry could be “Whoops… we screwed you… again, and again, and again.”

Why?

It’s not the first time it’s ever happened. In fact, it’s the third.

Last year, firefighters in Obion County Tennessee twice purposely REFUSED to attend to a housefire, and allowed the house to completely burn to the ground. It was nationally – even internationally -reported as a “no pay, no spray” issue.

Why?

The owners had not paid a $75 annual fee to the Volunteer Fire Department. Especially insulting was that the firefighters responded… not to attempt to extinguish the fire, but rather, to prevent fire from spreading to a neighboring house… whose owner had paid the fee.

Fast forward to December 2011.

Same song, third verse. Third verse same as the first.

Have people simply gone mad? Where’s their sense of humanity?!!

Be sure to read the stories from last year’s incident. I’m not certain why – or if – the Tennessee State Legislature dealt with that issue. If not, they should.

Fire Chief Doug McClanahan in neighboring Blount County had this to say about the issue: Read the rest of this entry »

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How to make a simple, inexpensive barbecue smoker

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, October 4, 2011

For those uninitiated in the finer things of Southern culture, Barbecue is a staple Southern food.

In fact, it’s one of the primary food groups.

Snake Handler Double IPA

Snake Handler Double IPA

It’s right alongside beer.

Yep, there’s bread, also known as the “staff of life” more often, though, it’s cornbread; there’re vegetables, which include tomatoes, green beans, black-eyed peas, corn on the cob; liquid refreshments which include sweet tea, beer – and then… there’s barbecue.
Read the rest of this entry »

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Small Minds Think Small Thoughts

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, September 24, 2011

Wilson Lock and Dam, impounding Wilson Lake on...

Wilson Lock & Dam, impounding Wilson Lake, viewing North - Image via Wikipedia

In the region where I attended and graduated university, and later resided for many years, there has been an ongoing ruckus.

As a bit of background for the reader, Northwest Alabama is geographically comprised of Lauderdale and Colbert counties. The two counties are separated by the Tennessee River, with Lauderdale on the Northern side, which county also borders Tennessee.  Regardless of what anyone says otherwise, there has been a great sense of superiority, or of “looking down” the nose at Colbert county by Lauderdale countians. Lauderdale county hosts the university, while Colbert county hosts the community/junior college. Colbert county has historically been a blue-collar, labor-oriented community, while Lauderdale county has historically been a retail/white collar-oriented community. Colbert county is wet – allows beverage alcohol sales – whereas Lauderdale county is dry, and only a few select locales within it are wet.

I happened to read a recent story about the prospects that Sheffield city officials (Sheffield is in Colbert county) have suggested which would Read the rest of this entry »

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Good News for Birthing Mothers! – Audio Post

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, June 3, 2011

Wonderful News out of Nashville! /%20%20/%20Post

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Mississippi River Flooding, Diaster Response & Economic Theory

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, May 16, 2011

The opening lyric to Hank Williams, Jr.‘s – aka “Bocephus” – 1982 song “A County Boy Can Survive,” is “And the Mississippi River she’s a goin’ dry.”

At this juncture, that certainly doesn’t seem to be the case.

The Mississippi River has flooded to such an extent that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has decided to open floodgates and allow excess water from the river to flow toward the Gulf of Mexico through alternate routes.

Weeks of heavy rains and runoff from the melting of an extremely snowy winter have raised Mississippi River levels to historic proportions. Over 3 million acres (1.2 million hectares) of farmland in Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas along the river have been flooded, evoking memories of floods in 1927 & ’37.

On Saturday, the Corps opened two of 125 floodgates at the Morganza Spillway, and opened two more today (Sunday, 15 May 2011). The spillway is 45 miles northwest of Louisiana’s capitol, Baton Rouge. The Corps hopes that by opening them, it will Read the rest of this entry »

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Crimson Tide Offensive Lineman found dead on Florida balconey

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, May 12, 2011

Police have confirmed that after a night of partying, Alabama Crimson Tide Offensive Lineman Aaron Douglas was found dead on the balcony of second-floor Fernandina Beach, Florida residence.

Witnesses said the 21-year-old Douglas was taking a taxi to Jacksonville after dinner with friends when two women apparently Read the rest of this entry »

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“Lady Gaga” goes gaga over “Baby Gaga” Breast Milk Ice Cream

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, March 6, 2011

Earlier I’d posted about “Baby Gaga” human breast milk ice cream which was being marketed in England.

Now, the denizen attorney hoards hired by Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, aka “Lady Gaga,” have threatened an entrepreneur in England who has hit upon a rather unique idea which has – legality & ethics issues aside – provided a nominal source of income for the donors and for the marketer.

We don’t read of the “Goo Goo Dolls” suing “Goo Goo Cluster” candy in Nashville, TN. Nor do we read of either of them suing “Goo Gone” of Cleveland, OH for their citrus-based cleaning product. Perhaps her insatiably greedy attorneys will file suit against anyone whom uses the word “gaga” in conversation.

Standard Candy Company, makers of the Goo Goo Cluster indicate that Read the rest of this entry »

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